Saturday, January 17, 2009

Harvey, Alan and Clive

I bought books by Harvey Pekar and Alan Moore at my neighborhood's exciting new addition last week. Imagine my surprise when I opened the Pekar book at a random page yesterday and found a storyline about Pekar's visit with Moore in England.

Unlike The Simpsons' version of Moore, Pekar's, drawn by Ed Piskor, makes Moore look even more like a wild man than he does in video clips. "Alan is a very good and very talented guy," Pekar writes. "You couldn't have a better friend." Pekar has Moore say that he lives in Northampton because "It centers me. It has a large working-class population that I feel comfortable with." and "It's been inhabited continuously for 8,000 years."

In other news related to my reading, I found this in an essay by Hugh Trevor-Roper: "The world is jealous of confidence and success: it loves to detect the occasional ignorance of the omniscient, the trivial errors of the infallible."

Of course, he was writing about Macaulay and not about Clive James, but still.
© Peter Rozovsky 2009

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14 Comments:

Blogger adrian mckinty said...

Peter

That's an unexpected joy. That comic is a must have for me.

I dont think Alan Moore's quite right about Northampton though. Northampton's a fairly dull suburban town on the M1, a ten minute drive from Leamington Spa and Milton Keynes, hardly Kinsman Road in East Cleveland


That Clive James thread really has become in Ger Brennan's words become "a monster". We're up there with Daily Kos comments now.

January 18, 2009  
Blogger Paul D.Brazill said...

Fancy that comic, i do. adrian's right about Northampton. Home of Rick Astley, the goth band Bauhause and my old mate the porn star Omar. Was it featured in the IDLER book of crap towns? stewart lee's radio interviews with alan moore are a joy, bye the way.

January 18, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Adrian, Pekar appears to have met some interesting people on his travels to promote the American Splendor movie. I wonder if Alan Moore lives in a part of town different from the one you know. Or maybe he just has his facts wrong. I do seem to recall your remarking that you liked Alan Moore because he lived in the least distinctive part of England. In fact, you may have said Northampton had no distinctions whatsoever.

Up there with the Daily Kos, but I know how to calculate percentage change correctly, if I ever have to, unlike the DK.

January 18, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Paul: The British Comics (if I have the name right) interviews with Moore, available in YouTube, are also worth a look. Are those radio interviews available online?

I don't remember if Northampton was in the book of crap towns. I've seen one such book, but that was before I had any reason to look out for Northampton. In fact, none of the towns from the books sticks in my mind.

January 18, 2009  
Blogger adrian mckinty said...

Peter, Paul (love saying that)

I lived in Leamington for a year and that definitely should be on the last of crap towns. There's a Sir John Betjeman poem called Death in Leamington which sums up the mood well.

That comic just sounds better and better, Pekar travelling the world bad mouthing David Letterman...

January 18, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Adrian, I just opened the comic at another random page. I found the beginning of a story in which Pekar talks about music and the soundtrack to the American Splendor.

He also visits Australia in one of the stories. One panel even has an illustration of Sydney's Opera House, although, based on newspaper references, I think the building's full name is "The City's Iconic Opera House."

And the McKinty/James thread isn't monstrous, it's just healthy and growing.

January 18, 2009  
Blogger petra michelle; Whose role is it anyway? said...

You seem to find something in everything you read and make it interesting, Peter.
hmmm. v-word: artiest. Apropos?

January 18, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Why, many thanks. That's due either to my wide-ranging interests, or to my mania for making a new post every day.

Nice v-word!

January 18, 2009  
Blogger adrian mckinty said...

Peter

This would be the same Hugh Trevor Roper who authenticated the Hitler Diaries for The Sunday Times, right?

January 19, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Er, yes. His reputation never quite recovered from that one. Happily, though, these essays were written decades earlier.

January 19, 2009  
Blogger marco said...

This would be the same Hugh Trevor Roper who authenticated the Hitler Diaries for The Sunday Times, right?

Occasional ignorance.Trivial error.

Happily, though, these essays were written decades earlier.

Before acquiring the wealth of experience which didn't help him recognize what other experts called not particularly good fakes?


v-word:alize,a french alice,or maybe a trade wind.

January 19, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

The Hitler Diaries were an unedifying story. The fault appears to lie more with practies of greed and corrupt journalism. Apparently Trevor-Roper's newspaper had signed a confidentiality agreement that barred him and others from having the diaries reviewed by other academics.

I read that the forgeries had been composed on modern paper with modern ink. The confidentiality agreement might have barred Roper and the others who were fooled from submitting the diaries to experts who could have detected this.

January 19, 2009  
Blogger adrian mckinty said...

But they also had things in them like "those Americans with their Jazz music, that is why the Reich will triumph."

And I'll bet there was the odd "thank God for our fleet of operational helicopters, they will be the key to our victory."

And of course who can forget his rant about Star Wars

January 19, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

I suppose now you'll try to tell me that the Hitler clip is not genuine?

January 19, 2009  

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