What draws us to fall in love with a particular piece of art? Someone recently asked me to provide a list of things I was listening to/reading/loving/wanting, and a quick run-through provided Billie Holiday’s version of “You Go to My Head,” Scott Walker’s “Darkness” (from Plague Songs), Peter McCarty’s Fabian Escapes, Rufus Wainwright’s Release the Stars, Mary Gauthier’s “Falling Out of Love,” Deadwood (third season), a reread for the zillionth time of Louise Fitzhugh’s Harriet the Spy, and — on the wish list — Leonard Cohen’s version of Joni Mitchell’s “The Jungle Line.” Is there an aesthetic through-line here? Thank goodness the person didn’t ask me that.

I also think John Malkovich is hot, but we won’t get into that.

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