On Mankato, Minnesota's KMSU "The Maverick," I talked with Benjamin Allocco for the show he co-hosts, "The Weekly Reader." You can listen here; it's 33 minutes long, just so you know what you're getting into. It was a fun conversation, so I think it might be interesting to others as well.
This was a very gratifying "notice" to receive for Ghost Dances. I'm not sure what the circulation of the Prairie Personalist is, but it's the press organ (read: newsletter) of some heroes of mine, Beth Preheim and Mike Sprong. They run Emmaus House, which is a hospitality house in the Catholic worker tradition for families visiting their loved ones in the prison facilities in and around Yankton, South Dakota. They don't have a web presence that I can discern, but you should send them a donation or get on their mailing list: 401 Green Street, Yankton, SD 57078.
Again belatedly (I'm in school...), here's a link to my review of Timothy Egan's Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher: The Epic Life and Immortal Photographs of Edward Curtis. I'm actually a fan of "Mr. Egan" (per New York Times style), but there were some serious blind spots that I wanted readers to go into his book expecting. At left is "The Vanishing Race," the opening image of Curtis's portfolio.
I forgot to link to the op-ed heard 'round the world. Wow—I have never struck a nerve like that before. Of course I've never written for the New York Times before. But I guess a lot of people have a yearning for good old midcentury liberalism. With good reason. And here's a link to a radio interview I did on South Dakota Public Broadcasting's "Dakota Midday" talk show. It was pretty fun, though again a little scary to be live on the air. If you could hear how mumbly and inarticulate I sound on the tapes of me as a college DJ at WAMH, you'd be impressed with my performance. My grown-up self is a regular Casey Kasem by comparison. Anyway, God bless you, Mr. McGovern. You were a good man.
Unfortunately, I wasn't able to go to the Land Institute's Prairie Festival this year. The one time I attended I learned a lot and had a great time—fond memories of taking a shower in water from an old oil tank that made me smell like creosote and probably kept the bugs away. The event has gotten so big the New York Times took notice. I remember pitching the event to NYC websites to no avail. Grrr.
I am very much looking forward to its upstart artsy cousin, the Big Feed in Byers, Colorado, on October 13. Look at that bison roasting!
So, appropriately enough, I was on Prairie Public Broadcasting yesterday. For those few of you outside the North Dakota broadcast zone, you can stream it here. I had a nice chat with Dayna Del Val via land line.
This was a fun, but nerve-racking first appearance on television, the inimitable AM Northwest. In the Portland media market, I followed the Backstreet Boys reunion on Good Morning America.
I met and chatted with the NYC all-star Leonard Lopate on WNYC today. Nerves before, relief afterward. Here's the link to the podcast version if you want to hear more about the book.
Hmm, the New Yorker that hit newsstands the day before Ghost Dances hit bookstores shares a cover element with my book—that iconic silhouette that once graced the tails side of a nickel. The artist, Bruce McCall, intended this image as a libertarian satire of the corporate, warm fuzzy utopia Michael Bloomberg is trying to make of the city. I prefer to see the ambiguity and weirdness of the urban buffalo on this sort-of High Line (a name, by the way, shared with a spectacular region of Montana Plains along the Canadian border)—the similarities between New York City and the Plains, and the danger in this most comically benign image (see the first couple of seconds of the Ghost Dances trailer, for instance). And there are indeed bison in the city, as the prologue to my book describes. I imagine that they are just about as awkward and out of place there as their human kin.