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“The Roast of Iowa City” endcaps the Festival of the Book

The Roast of Ghostwriter-ville

We are lucky that Iowa City is the only one U.S. UNESCO Literary City the whooole world over, and to have an even bigger, city-wide, weekend-long Festival of the Book for it. The Roast of Iowa City finale was the best part, hands down, glasses up.

But if you only read to laugh, or like to listen to your hilarity while chowing down even more–the Roast of our fine town and campus last Sunday was an IPA- and dark-beer-drinking, mozz-stick-sizzling yuck-it-up to wrap up a writerly, readerly, mostly quiet, reverential, program-history-nostalgic serial string of readings and panels and the usual world-famous authors who of course went here to the Workshop or Nonfiction Writing Program. Word to the Iowa writer alum, the writing students pulled in for it, and the fantastic living breathing achievement, contribution to the canon, and way-paving for every other writing program of the U Iowa writing programs; WE’RE #1!!! It’s true! Pick up a best-seller, or watch one of the current well-written tv shows: Chances are there are Iowa ties, even if you didn’t know when you bought a black and yellow Hawkeye t-shirt.

If you wanna goof off and drink your weekend: Have no fear! Even Book Fest fans the flames of the finest, closeted non-reader fittin’ to Hawk-out! The culture editor of your favorite underground haps rag Little Village told all those stories you thought you were the only one going through about crappy crazy neighbors and trying to get an apartment, a New-Yorker-cum-Iowa-Citian told us why he loves (and hates) the place, a Townie told us why he loves (and hates) the place, and these were almost exactly the same reasons! An English major inflamed us with the fantasy concerns of a young Hawkeye spawn not becoming a fan. And taking the cake was a recent grad describing dating life at U Iowa in good ol’ Iowa City. Who knew Sally Mason, our controversial university president, was on Tinder? Or that a regular-guy student could find her–and she’d be a match?! Did he get a date with her? You should’ve been there!

Sit back in the Mill‘s almost-too-low light next year with me. I’ll order you the Iowa City tradition “Peckinpah” pizza pie that’s been on the menu since current Iowa students were just drunken twinkles in the eyes of some Hawkeyes fumbling with the locks of the stall doors painted with trippy white birch trees.


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