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Short Takes

“If you came into the kitchen in my house when I was growing up and you were looking for something ??? money or a clean shirt or permission to go to the pictures ??? then my mother could be really irritating. She would quote Shakespeare in a loud voice and make you listen. Sometimes she was Julius Caesar, sometimes Cassio, sometimes Iago and often Othello. You had to stand there and wait until she was finished.”

McEwan on when sex began (ie, 1963).

My favorite April Fool’s post.

“At this point, what counts as literary porn, anyway?”

Plagiarizing one Parker collection in another.

“Predicting the future of technology is a mug’s game, but that doesn’t stop people from trying to do it.” And about biologically inspired robots

The French have a thing or two to say about English as a global language.

“There is no university in the continental United States that has a department of biography — the only one that I know of is in Hawaii.” (via AL Daily)

The MLA grades an evaluation of No Child Left Behind. It’s ok if you feel a little dizzy.

Eastern Europe, poetry and power.

It’s official: I want a pet otter.

In honor of Passover: kosher wine.