What It Is (posts below left; rate sheet, client list, other stuff below right)

My name is Bob Land. I am a full-time freelance editor and proofreader, and occasional indexer. This blog is my website.

You'll find my rate sheet and client list here, as well as musings on the life of a freelancer; editing, proofreading, and indexing concerns and issues; my ongoing battles with books and production; and the occasional personal revelation.

Feel free to contact me directly with additional questions: landondemand@gmail.com.

Thanks for visiting. Leave me a comment. Come back often.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

out of nowhere

So, I'm indexing this rather thoughtful tome entitled Quenching Hell: The Mystical Theology of William Law. On second read, I am getting an idea of what the book is about, but as with most of the stuff I work on . . . right over my head.

Then comes the first A-level head in the last chapter: "Baby's on Fire." There is no subsequent text in the chapter to justify the use of this header.

Folks, "Baby's on Fire" is one twisted Brian Eno song that appears on the most excellent album pictured here (as well as on Here Come the Warm Jets). If you can't read the type, this is a concert album featuring Kevin Ayers, John Cale, Eno, and Nico. Plenty of good stuff to recommend.

The lyrics appear below. And if anyone can tell me what the connection is, or if the author -- one Alan Gregory -- happens upon this blog and can explain the reference, I would be most appreciative.

Baby's on fire
Better throw her in the water
Look at her laughing
Like a heifer to the slaughter

Baby's on fire
And all the laughing boys are bitching
Waiting for photos
Oh the plot is so bewitching

Rescuers row row
Do your best to change the subject
Blow the wind blow blow
Lend some assistance to the object

Photographers snip snap
Take your time she's only burning
This kind of experience
Is necessary for her learning

If you'll be my flotsam
I could be half the man I used to
They said you were hot stuff
And that's what Baby's been reduced to

Juanita and Juan
Very clever with maraccas
Making their fortunes
Selling second-hand tobaccoes

Juan dances at Chico's
And when the clients are evicted
He empties the ashtrays
And pockets all that he's collected

But Baby's on fire!
And all the instruments agree that
Her temperature's rising
But any idiot would know that.
Late update: I just wrote to the author. We'll see.


moi said...

I'm having very My Life in the Bush of Ghosts moments these days. Mainly because I have about five bazillion headers to write and I'm crap at headers. Should be a separate job unto itself. Maybe I should have taken a peek at my Primus CDs for inspiration?

czar said...

thankfully, in retrospect, i think it was the inability to write headlines that anyone could relate to that kept me from getting a copyediting job another lifetime ago at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. that is a road i am very happy life did not lead me down.

czar said...

oh, by the way, if this is for the corporate history, headers make indexers happy. so, thanks.

NYD said...

I can't even imagine how a person can write an index. The only thing I can relate it to are the lines Kurt Vonnegut wrote about itin the book Cat's Cradle.

NYD said...

I didn't make those typos to give you more work, I just suck at typing so I forgot the space and the comma, sorry.

czar said...

no worries. i am off-duty when on the blog . . . when it comes to my precious few readers, anyway

moi said...

I remember when our Vermont Il Duce first decided we needed headers – I think it was the K.C. book. Anyway, NONE of the writers wanted to do them. You should have seen the flood of protest emails I got.