Stephen Malkmus, Patton Oswalt, And Frank Lloyd WrightS

Welcome to Must Read, where we single out the best stories from around the automotive universe and beyond. Today we've got reports from Esquire, PlayboySFW, and Vanity Fair.

Stephen Malkmus On The Pavement LegacyEsquire

I'm a Pavement fan and will definitely be looking forward to the release of the new Jicks CD tomorrow. As an amuse bouche for that, here's Malkmus talking about The Grateful Dead:

Well, sometimes there is sort of a counterculture, do-it-yourself side to them that I appreciated. But you take the good with the bad. There was certainly some kind of watered-down side to it all by the end, right? Not to mention depressing drug use that's sort of a cautionary tale, a cautionary baby boomer story. I watched Jobs with Ashton Kutcher. And you've got Ashton Kutcher playing Steve Jobs. And he's walking around on bare feet and kind of singing hippy-dippy stuff. But he's also this voracious capitalist. And the Dead were, too. They were definitely a money-making baby boomer thing. They were peace and love and then they grew up. Or they never were maybe. They were always the children of their parents.

The Wright Stuff? Test-Driving the Jeep Grand Cherokee EcoDieselVanity Fair

Stephen Malkmus, Patton Oswalt, And Frank Lloyd Wright

Brett Berk has mega press car game, meaning he can get just about any car (even ones the manufacturers say aren't around anymore). How does he do it? The Grand Cherokee EcoDiesel near Falling Water sounds like the worst kind of I-want-this-car-for-a-vacation kind of request (of which I've made a few) but Berk, as always, manages to pull it off.

Frank Lloyd Wright may have been a boor, a tyrant, and a womanizer, but he was also a profoundly creative architect. His unique artistic ideals—buildings that connected organically to their surroundings, featured open living plans oriented around familial togetherness, and were experiments with advanced construction materials and techniques—had an immense and ongoing influence on design.

Many of the same statements could be applied to the Jeep brand. Having its beginnings in World War II—when its four-wheel-drive transport was created to ferry troops and weaponry across treacherous landscapes—Jeep's handsome upright appearance, accessible utilitarianism, and all-terrain capability have had a significant and lasting effect on the auto industry and American culture.

20Q: Patton Oswalt on Rape Jokes, How a Nerd Rebels in HS and Social MediaPlayboySFW

Stephen Malkmus, Patton Oswalt, And Frank Lloyd Wright

The aesthetic of the average Playboy centerfold, so bereft of hair and full of plastic they might as well be mannequins that never get their chance to Kim Cattrall, isn't really my thing. If you like it, Mazel Tov, but I'd never pick one up to get aroused.

That's why I'm a fan of what the magazine is doing with their SFW blog. I can browse over to their Kinja and enjoy this great interview with Patton Oswalt.

Years before Comic-Con became crazy, I saw this guy walking around in an amazing Klingon costume he'd made—costume, makeup, everything. I told him, "Wow, I'm stunned. What do you do for a living?" He told me he was an actuarial accountant and was explaining his life to me, and I said, "You should do costumes in films and TV." He looked at me and said, "But then I wouldn't have time to watch the shows I watch." It was almost as if he didn't want to watch the magic being made; he wanted it to impact him. It was his fantasy world that he didn't want messed with. That's another Walter Mitty.