The number of young people in today’s information-overloaded America who are managing to make a living writing poetry probably exceeds the nation’s current population of ivory-billed woodpeckers, but both birds and poets are indisputably endangered.
There were maybe 30 of us at GeekHampton in Sag Harbor the other night, watching a PowerPoint presentation on how to spot an Internet “phishing” scam.
Not a virus, not a bug, not a worm, not even the so-called “Nigerian 419” shakedown (419 is the number of the Nigerian Criminal Code section dealing with fraud — thank you, Wikipedia), where somebody in Lagos urgently desires to give you a big chunk of his rich uncle’s money in exchange for a little of yours to bribe it out of the country.
On Memorial Day 2011, Fran Castan wrote searingly in this newspaper of the death of her first husband, the Look magazine war correspondent Sam Castan, killed by enemy fire in the highlands of Vietnam, just an hour’s plane ride away from their apartment in Hong Kong. Traumatized, she fled the British colony, where they had happily settled short months before, and returned to the United States, carrying their 13-month-old toddler and a weight of buried memories that would surface many years later in her award-winning poetry.
While public libraries everywhere are adapting more or less effectively to the many challenges posed by the technological revolution, the East Hampton Library — known not so very long ago for its dusty stacks, once-a-year book sales, and “Shhh, quiet, please” admonitions — is fast becoming a pacesetter among its peers. Not only is it keeping up with digital change, it is running a step or two ahead.
Indie, activist, hip, smart, relevant? Then you will want to know that the Feminist Press, a nonprofit literary publishing house that takes pride in being all that and more, is holding its annual Hamptons fund-raiser on Sunday, and that B. Smith’s restaurant on Long Wharf in Sag Harbor is the place for the like-minded to be.
My iPhone 4 fell out of my back pocket and into the toilet.
Three things raced through my mind when I heard the splash: Get it out! Dry it off! I can’t believe this is happening!
I grabbed a towel and rubbed, and then I did what you are never, ever supposed to do when your cellphone gets wet: turned it on.
A flicker of life! The little Apple silhouette — glowing, otherwordly — appeared . . . and vanished.