Friday, August 24, 2007

Kassabova on Clive James

I first chanced upon Kapka Kassabova through Clive James's website.

There's a fine sense of completion when I chanced upon this. Here's Kassabova on James:

Perfectly balanced and lethal like a Russian ice-skater, Clive James pirouettes through conversation, as he does on the page. There’s never a dull moment. From Shakespeare’s sonnets (“You should always carry a copy of the complete Shakespeare with you”) to The Sopranos (“It’s appalling. I love it”); from the diaries of war witness Victor Klemper to the uses of the baseball cap, which, worn back-to-front, is “the international sign of the idiot”; from the misguided utilitarian politics of playwright Brecht to Czech émigré Milan Kundera’s “unbearable lightness of not being there”; from singing along to the arias in a Tosca production (“You’re lucky – this is the best Scarpia you’ll ever see!”) to commenting on a group of female guests in his Berlin hotel: “There’s a Convention for the World’s Ugliest Women here.” Careless about his own appearance, he is meticulous about the appearance of others, especially women. But nobody’s perfect.

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