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 1 
 on: Today at 12:49:29 PM 
Started by MDS - Last post by MDS
i was out canvassing for votes in QV and kapler passed by me

first off he is built like a fire hydrant...easily more jacked than your average linebacker. he isnt insanely tall but he could break me into pieces with his index finger.

second i asked if they're signing machado and he said something to the effect of "i dont know, we'll see." i responded with the money doesnt matter you gotta do it and hes like "i love it."

so its official. machado to the phillies.

 2 
 on: Today at 10:50:42 AM 
Started by Wingspan - Last post by General_Failure
Luke Cage also cancelled. The Marvel burnout is too strong for seventeen shows that probably should have just been one show.

 3 
 on: Today at 10:16:29 AM 
Started by MURP - Last post by Diomedes
The older I get the less I can tolerate television and movies.  I watch basically nothing but Eagles football.  I can go years without seeing a movie.  The only way I can entertain myself is by being active, not passive.  Games and puzzles work.  That is, I'm able to forget myself for a while as I'm busy figuring shtein out in the game.  And of course, there's reading.  Without books, I'd probably just rather die. 

Recently:

Frederick Douglass --  Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave - Holy shtein this man was a giant.  Fascinating to read this man's first account of his life as a slave in parts of the world that I know pretty well.  Among other things I liked Douglass' observations of people's character.  He put flesh and blood into the figures of different slavers who traded him, as well as some of his fellow slaves.  I could see in my imagination the fields he was made to work under Covey, and also the ships at Fell's Point in Baltimore.  Fascinating read. 


Nicholas Monsarrat --  The Cruel Sea - An account of wartime life aboard the British corvette class convoy escort ships of WWII.  I knew little of this part of the war prior...America sitting over there doing farg all as the Germans enjoyed years of target practice taking out merchant ships from their U boats.  I was surprised by how modern the language was--a few anachronistic phrases and the like but generally it was the same English we use today.  It's characters are good at Sea but on land, and in matters of domestic life, they flag and their stories smack of cliche.  From what I gather, this book was an amalgamation of several shorter pieces Monsarrat had written previously, and is considered his best work.


Erik Larson --  Devil in the White City - Two subjects addressed in tandem, set in the same time and place (roughly):  the effort by Chicago's (and eventually, America's) leading architects to produce the World's Fair of 1893, and the career of on of America's first famous serial killers.  I found the former story fascinating, and ate it up, but the latter uninteresting and a chore.  I couldn't care less about serial killers and their methods.  The cop who eventually figured it all out was interesting.  As for the Fair, I couldn't get enough of that.  As a carpenter, I was fascinated by the scale of the building, and the characters who lead the Fair are a laundry list of Important people from the time.  Well worth the read just for the education about Chicago and the Fair at the end of the 19th century. 


Phillip K. Dick --  The Man in the High Castle - Billed as "alternate history" and "science fiction" at once, this is the first of Dick's work that I've read.  I'm broadly aware of his place in the canon of American writing, and also that he was an all-time speed freak, neither of which helped me to appreciate the book any better than I might have done if I came to it completely ignorant of the man.  As it happened, I suspected from the start that I was merely being dragged along in the frantic uppers-rush of his writing by the idiotic genius you think you've become amidst the crazy flow of thoughts that cascade relentlessly though an amphetamine-besotted mind.  The actual language was interesting and if not exactly a pleasure to read, it was definitely something more accomplished than the unremarkable style of Erik Larson, which I read just before this.  At the end of Man..Castle, I was just glad to be done, and despite his reputation for putting big questions to the reader, I didn't find anything in it too very interesting.  Clever idea, Japan taking the U.S. from CA to the Rockies, and the Germans getting the rest, etc.  But the whole circular, self-referential b.s. about an important author writing a book of alternate history in which America wins the war was just too clever by half.  I could be persuaded otherwise perhaps, but I don't think this is anymore than pseudo-intellectual jerking off, that passes well in coffee shops with young edgy people...  I'll give his work another chance some day, as I'm told that Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep is better.


John Le Carre --  The Spy Who Came in from the Cold -- This was my first exposure to Le Carre, and I loved it.  What an outstanding breath of fresh air the writing was after the jarring staccato of The Man in the High Castle.  Concise, sharp, excellent writing, with good characters and momentum.  I'm not a spy novel guy, or into mysteries, so this was not typical reading.  The closest I've come to the genre is some Eric Ambler.  I was glad to find that it is not a page turning spy thriller along the lines of Tom Cruise movies, but instead more of a rumination on black questions about how far one can go in opposing evil without becoming so.  I often wonder it it will always require a Stalin to defeat a Hitler, as it were, and the abdication of morality that is accepted, even embraced, by the spies who are supposedly fighting to preserve good things, is good shtein to chew on with a second deep whiskey in the evening.  I will read Le Carre again now that I find he's doing more than just spinning yarns about dashing spies.

Richard Price -- The Whites  - Very good modern American writing, page turning cops story, written in short passages that come off more like a script for the Wire than as a novel, but entertaining nevertheless.  Hardly an important work, nothing really to chew on here, but a pleasant read and Price nails modern urban American life.  I've also read Lush Life--which I think was better than The Whites--and would recommend Price as a not-quite frivolous page turner, but that's all.  If for no other reason, his language is top notch.  Some passages are so packed with fresh, accurate descriptions of people's motives, or expressions, etc. that they warrant re-reading and underlining as examples of talented writing.

Edgar Lee Masters --  Spoon River Anthology - Published 1915, this book is something else.  Masters offers a portrait of small town middle America that strips the facade of wholesome rural-values, and reveals the truth:  sex with people you'r not supposed to farg, murder, suicide, lifelong misery, graft and charity alike, all these things better and worse, thrive wherever the human heart beats...not just in the big cities.  The most interesting thing to me, other than the indictment of those small town Americans who like to see themselves (in today's lingo) as people of family values, as being no better than those denizens of iniquity in the City, is the way the story is told:  Master gives the reader an epitaph from each of dozens and dozens of townfolk.  Short passages that link one to another, the more so the better you pay attention.  But that's the rub:  he's given the reader such small chunks of narrative that it's easy to sample a bit now and a bit later, like snacking, rather than taking good long sections at a time, like a meal.  If the reader succumbs to the lure of taking the tale in bits and pieces, he will miss a great many of the connections that give the book depth.  In order to appreciate the larger tapestry, you really need to read the book through in big sections, but the format almost begs the reader to take small bites rather than a whole meal.  I'd love to ask Masters why he chose this method.  I think I will re-read this one some time sooner than later, because I'm sure I've missed subtle connections that enrich the work.

Next up, either The Sot Weed Factor, by John Barth, or Toland's Adolf Hitler.  Likely, the latter.  When reading The Man in the High Castle, I was ashamed by how little I knew of the few prominent Nazis mentioned.  I mean, I broadly get that Rommel was a tank guy in Africa, and Goebbals was the propaganda guy and all that, but I realized that I need to know the Nazis and their history better than I do.  Toland was recommended to me as an excellent start upon the European WW2 and Nazi history.  I do like big books, too...if they are good there's nothing like 1000 pages of something to suck me out of my own world.  This one might not be such a pleasant diversion as Middlemarch or Moby Dick, but it comes highly praised as being readable, etc.  We'll see.

Anyone else doing some good reading?

 4 
 on: Today at 08:28:30 AM 
Started by Diomedes - Last post by Rome
Ha.  No.  Ive seen them live myself.  Theyre ridiculously good. 

 5 
 on: October 19, 2018, 08:06:12 PM 
Started by PoopyfaceMcGee - Last post by Rome
hey romey, your buddy frank is a tad misguided id say.

Hes an ignorant jackass.  I did get a kick out of him calling me a libtard, though.  Good stuff. 

 6 
 on: October 19, 2018, 03:50:12 PM 
Started by General_Failure - Last post by AO1
Hyde traded to the Jags for a 5th. Id have taken him for a 5th, hes better than Smallwood

 7 
 on: October 19, 2018, 02:41:06 PM 
Started by PoopyfaceMcGee - Last post by smeags
hey romey, your buddy frank is a tad misguided id say.

 8 
 on: October 19, 2018, 02:06:38 PM 
Started by PoopyfaceMcGee - Last post by ice grillin you
https://www.nbcsports.com/philadelphia/the700level/fan-who-ran-subway-pole-gets-big-surprise-eagles

 9 
 on: October 19, 2018, 12:43:51 PM 
Started by General_Failure - Last post by Rome
He had the worst mechanics Ive ever seen.  Still a good player, though. 

 10 
 on: October 19, 2018, 12:33:47 PM 
Started by General_Failure - Last post by Diomedes
Apparently Rihanna turned down a Super Bowl halftime gig because of the NFL's treatment of Kap.

If true, much respect to her.

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