What exactly is a “bohemian” environment? Many of us love the idea of living in such a place, and indeed make decisions about where to live based on an assessment of which place is the most bohemian, in the sense of most accepting of the widest possible variety of work and lifestyle choices. But the received definition of “bohemian” – and the one, disappointingly, accepted by urbanism maven Richard Florida – equates bohemianness with working in “the arts.” Certainly artistic activity is an important component of any bohemian culture, but hardly all artists are bohemians, particularly professional artists – including, notably, those who once counted as bohemians but whose mold-breaking has become a style or an affected life-tic. So, as Daniel Silver notes, contra RF, it’s not in LA and Nashville – filled with professional artists – that we should look for bohemia, and it’s not at what certain people do for a living, but at how the bulk of people, in a particularly area, live, all the time. Where, though, do we find his “concentrations of [certain specific] expressive practices?” He leaves the elaboration for another post, which I look forward to reading.
Archived entries for places
…or at least, has the most of, per capita. Same info available for every other country too, in the full-size, lightly interactive map at this link. Be sure to click through if you, like me, need another argument to convince your wife that the whole family, little kids included, should move to Montevideo.
For me, the best non-fiction writing is the stuff that leaves you wondering, is the writer really that good, or the subject just so interesting, that anyone could write well about it? A case in point – and an indication that however by-the-(boring)-book its fiction, and political pieces, might be, the New Yorker is still worth reading – is Peter Stevenson’s account of his brief jaunt through Astoria with Christopher Walken.
According to Snopes, early on in his effort to turn Cuba into his personal fantasy camp, Fidel Castro created a more obvious predecessor of the US institution of the same name:
Cubans know that Fidel Castro was no ballplayer, though he dressed himself in the uniform of a spurious, tongue-in-cheek team called Barbudos (Bearded Ones) after he came to power in 1959 and played a few exhibition games. There was no doubt then about his making any team in Cuba. Given a whole country to toy with, Fidel Castro realized the dream of most middle-aged Cuban men by pulling on a uniform and “playing” a few innings.
More at the link above. I await photos of Hitler pole-vaulting in the 1936 Olympic trials, Stalin nailing a goal from the offside line, and Moctezuma dunking at the buzzer, at the end of a hard-fought game of tachli.
(Via the matchless Kottke)
…assuming they come after residential construction rebounds, and they’re looking for two bedrooms and a backyard pool.
For more way-cool pictures of California City, a never-finished desert suburb that’s wound up as the US equivalent of the Nazca Lines, check out this post at BLDGBlog. And for the big picture, go to Google Maps.