12 October 2006


Where I work (NJ not the Texas job) we have a storage building for construction materials which I store books in (generally less valuable ones or ones I’m not into now), and today in my absence while the bathroom was being sheet rocked a Latino drywall contractor used the john and took one of the books with him. When he got out he was passionately attached to the book and insisted on purchasing it. They said that it belonged to someone not present. He insisted on taking the book home and they suggested five dollars but the drywall worker insisted it was worth nine (twice the internet value) and emptied his wallet of the nine dollars inside. He is finished the job and is unlikely to return.

After extended interrogation, I established that the book is most probably Jean Cocteau’s Diary of an Unknown.


Ian Keenan said...

This was put to me originally as 'A Nobody' 'Diary of a Nobody' .. I feared it was my first Am Ed Knoft of Jules Romains 'Death of a Nobody.' I like to collect Romains Knoft editions because for one thing, no one wants them and they're cheap.

shanna said...

Yay for Cocteau!

Ian Keenan said...

a while back I wrote the lines:

the newspapers are FULL
of stories of
Jean Cocteau

of which the subtext of the full poem meandered around the neighborhood of ‘Yay poetry’ as can be commonly found when young people arrive at Naropa in the summer months and get caught up in the ‘Yay poetry’ pep rally contests. I remember I was writing it and preparing to perform it (what do you need a ponderous subtext for if it’s for a reading?) in the hostel, which I moved out of, indicating it was the first week or so, and the guy in the room next to me said he thought I was screaming about Joan Fontaine in the middle of the night.

david raphael israel said...

you were in the Naropa summer writing program one year? When was that? Just curious. (A young friend of mine almost went this past summer, but then changed plans.)

Ian Keenan said...

..it was '91.


It would have been much better in my case to wait 'til I got older, but I got undergrad credits which was good because the other schools weren't working for me. The summer programs are still the best for that sort of thing; the MFA program has the most stylistically diverse faculty of the handful of good writing schools out there.

david raphael israel said...

cool; -- I listened to that audio fragment (3min 40sec), from what now seems almost another era.