angry beaver, caption 'do not want' Don’t upset the beavers.

It was cold and cloudy on Monday, and it started raining at about 3:30pm. Two buses had broken down or something right next to my bus stop, and they had the police and the transit authority out there doing something. My bus was about 10 minutes late thanks to construction downtown, so I got to see that neither of the broken buses had moved an inch after 15 minutes. It was still drizzling when the bus dropped me off. It’s certainly novel having cold and rain in Phoenix, though.

Reading “The greatest American short stories of 2007″. I got this book almost a year ago and hadn’t read it until now. Well, I’ve only liked a few of the stories I’ve read in it so far. There’s “Wait”, a surreal story about a bunch of people who are trapped in an airport for weeks while waiting for a plane to take off. Anyone who’s dealt with the airline industry can empathize with that one. There’s “Toga Party” by John Barth, where a bunch of comfortable upper-middle-class 60-ish folks get together for a party and several of them commit suicide at the end. This one wasn’t interesting for the characters or the plot (all were pretty banal, vapid, or predictable) but for vague hints that in the setting, lots of people were killing themselves for tax reasons. It’s like he was trying to write a sci-fi story without any of the usual sci-fi tropes. It’s also an odd example of a story where I disliked the characters, plot, and setting, but liked the overall effect the whole thing had. I also have to wonder: Was that the effect the author was aiming for? Does it matter?