This will require a bit of back-story, but not much. Alasdair Gray is a Glaswegian writer and artist. I once spent a lot of time looking at how he imagines and uses the Book as a material object. Somewhere in this flat I have a opus magnum which details Gray's use of paratextual elements in constructing and assembling his books (In case you care, his The Book of Prefaces really pushes these ideas to the very edge. I wouldn't call it an interesting read; it's a maddening exercise in finding a text. It's fun.)

In short: I like Alasdair Gray a great deal. In a strange and roundabout way, Gray's work in art and fiction was one of the reasons I moved to Glasgow and probably also one of the reasons why I connected with Glasgow so quickly. When you spend a significant amount of time living with your head inside books that write Glasgow, Glasgow herself becomes familiar.

I was watching BBC's The Culture show tonight. Alex Kapranos was reading a passage from Gray's Lanark whilst sitting in Óran Mór. The inside of my head was splattered across the television screen. To clarify: the frontman whose band's first album was the soundtrack to my life circa 2003-2005; the passage the very one you can find in the sidebar on this website; the novel which spawned a thousand and one things; and my local pub which just so happens to be decorated by Gray himself.

I learned that Alasdair Gray is working on a giant mural for my local underground station, Hillhead. And there is an exhibition in Edinburgh (there are two exhibitions, actually, but I'm mostly interested in the first one).

Life is very odd and very good and very bitter-sweet and very perfect sometimes. I am amazed at where my life has taken me.