The Poets and Writers film series, cosponsored by the Friends For The Public Library, kicks off today at Guild Cinema in Nob Hill. Among the word-centric films are An Angel At My Table (Jane Campion’s biopic about distinguished author Janet Frame), Barton Fink (the Coen brother’s existentially spoofy look at screenwriting in the Golden Age of Hollywood) and Slam Planet: War of Words (a documentary look at the national slam poetry championships). Each film will be introduced by a local author and/or poet. Alibi is getting into the spirit of the festival by sponsoring the Midnight Movie Madness screening of Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. This spiritedly trippy adaptation of gonzo journalist Hunter S. Thompson’s crackpot autobiography (directed by Monty Python’s Terry Gilliam) stars Johnny Depp, Benicio Del Toro, Harry Dean Stanton, Cameron Diaz, Ellen Barkin, Christina Ricci, Gary Busey, Lyle Lovett and more. Fear and Loathing will play Friday and Saturday night at 9:30 p.m. only. Local poet Olivia Gatwood will introduce Friday’s show. City Slam Champion Hakim Bellamy will kick it off on Saturday.
Today’s Office Excavations post is about a box of phlogs. If you punch this word into Google, you’ll get a dozen different definitions. I think, in this case—although there is no explanation accompanying the box—the artist means “photo logs,” or something of this ilk.
The box, which was under a stack of junk on a bookshelf in my office, is full of black, matte, blank greeting cards, each with a black and white photo glued to the front. Most of the subjects pictured are people, although one is cutlery and dirty plates. Each photo has intriguing composition and exudes a melancholy feel, such as I like my art to have. On the back of every card is an essay relating to the image on the front. The essays are little capsules of narrative poignancy.
A sheet inside the box reads “Phlogs: Journey to the heart of the human predicament. Note card series by George Stranahan.” (Dirty dishes do get right to the heart of my predicament.)
It turns out that George Stranahan is a physicist, philosopher, educator, writer and photographer who lives in Colorado. He is also a brewer. He started the Flying Dog brewpub in Aspen, which expanded to become a brewery in Denver, with his friend and neighbor Hunter S. Thompson!
The note cards are an offshoot of the book, Phlogs: Journey to the heart of the human predicament, which is full of photos and essays by Stranahan. He had some help on the bound version from author Nicole Beinstein Strait, who wrote some of the essays.
The note cards are really cool and I’m willing to share. If you comment on this blog, I will mail you one at random, and you can regift it or tack it to your wall. (Up to 12 people, because that’s how many cards there are.)
Ten years ago, when the Alibi was called NuCity, then-Editor Alma García and former columnist and Personals Manager (not to mention longtime Hunter S. Thompson companion) Norma Jean Thompson (no relation) embarked on a whirlwind journey to spend several days with the father of "Gonzo" journalism, driving around his property at breakneck speed and attempting to interview him while clinging to their own lives.