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SOMETHING THAT UPSETS ME

There are people in the world who actually justify their refusal to vote by claiming that franchise is an opiate for the masses. That's so sad and frustrating I want to retch.

SOMETHING THAT I FIND BITTERSWEET

"Coma Girl", by Joe Strummer and the Mescaleros, is damn near everything a rock 'n roll song should be. The Towson college station has it in furious rotation, and this fact confirms my notion that said station kicks ass. It is barely an exaggeration to say that I can't get enough of that song, because it makes me fucking giddy.

Of course, this giddiness is tempered by the knowledge that Joe Strummer (like Johnny Cash, Warren Zevon, and a frightening number of Ramones) is dead. As I've said before, I hope some of these folks enjoy a posthumous career as lucrative as Tupac's; Strummer seems off to a solid start, at least.

SOMETHING I THINK IS AWESOME BECAUSE I'M A TOTAL FUCKING GEEK

I went by the comic shop today after work, and came home with JLA/Avengers #2 and Superman/Batman: Worlds' Finest #3. Both lived up to my expectations in a big way. The former demonstrates why Kurt Busiek is amazing: it's filled with interactions among characters, ranging from the obscure to the iconic, that display a deep knowledge and love of said characters -- while also making for a great story. It also manages to find some surprises in among the familiar: folks expect the Batman/Captain America and Superman/Thor showdowns to be fun, and they are; but the issue almost gets stolen by Wonder Woman/Hercules.

The latter title is generally more predictable, but still manages to throw a few curveballs. But really, the draw for this one is the interaction between Bats and Supes, and it doesn't disappoint. Again, I'm really pleased when I read comics written by folks who love and understand the characters. (Of course, I use a very odd definition of "understanding" in this case -- some of my favorite depictions of these characters utterly contradict each other. I suppose I just dig on authors that find one aspect of the characters that they can relate to, and produce powerful and consistent renditions of the character in that light. I could start rambling about mythological parallels and modern-day demigods and what not, but I feel that I've probably geeked out enough for this post.)

THINGS THAT MAKE ME BEAM WITH DELIGHT

Our weekend has begun in earnest. We're getting a Margaret visit next weekend, and a Trevor visit sometime this month. My dad and I are trading book recommendations. We're going to see my family for Thanksgiving. There are amazing movies out right now, and more to come. My boss is more than willing to shift schedules around to get me more time in front of classes and/or trainees. Nina and I get to sleep in tomorrow, and get an extra hour of it at that. Samson is willing to be used as a pillow, for short naps at least. And did I mention that I get to spend a weekend with Nina? I think I might've. :-)
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Well, my posting has been erratic at best recently. I'll try to do better, because I believe in my heart of hearts that you people care.

I'll lay partial blame for my silence on the upcoming LSAT. While I'm not taking the thing myself, the October exam's frightening popularity means that I'm at least partially responsible for the preparation of about a score of folks who are. Add on the dozen kids in my SAT class, and it's been a busy couple of weeks.

Regarding those SAT kids: I've come to the conclusion that I can't deal with teaching SAT anymore. I don't have the patience to deal with seventeen-year-olds who are being forced to give up their nights and weekends for extra school. It doesn't pay any more than teaching the folks who choose to prepare for graduate school entrance exams, and it's a hell of a lot more aggravating. Luckily, my next two teaching assignments are a GRE and a GMAT class.

Of course, I've got to teach them tomorrow morning, which pleases me not a whit. But then I get to hang out with my brother-in-law, which is something I've been able to do far too little of these past few months.

Since I find it reasonable to assume that anyone reading this is literate, I have no qualms about making a universal recommendation for S.M. Stirling's The Peshawar Lancers. It buckles all the swashes and alternates the histories, and is a damned good yarn all 'round.

Of course, if you still haven't read George R.R. Martin's The Song of Ice and Fire, then I must assume you've given up books for some kind of ascetic reasons anyway, and so to hell with you. Go read A Game of Thrones, dammit. Enlightenment can wait.

Two agenda items upon which comments are most welcome:
1. Figuring out whether I like General Clark for what he believes, in addition to what he is.
2. Figuring out what the hell to do with my life.

Depending on the answers to the above, I may consider volunteering in a political campaign. As I said, comments are welcome.

Books!

Aug. 30th, 2003 12:22 am
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I'm generally pleased with the book access available to us down here in Maryland. My first visit to the local Borders came within a day of my arrival, and I found it very good indeed; I hadn't checked out the local B&N until yesterday, but when I did I discovered that it spiffs nicely as well.

And, of course, our local library is stunning, with a great selection, easy access to interlibrary loans, and an excellent online catalog for account management. I stopped there today, and added the following to the dozen books I've already got checked out:

Rats and Gargoyles, by Mary Gentle
The Urth of the New Sun, by Gene Wolfe
Nightside the Long Sun, also by Wolfe
Across the Universe: the DC Universe Stories of Alan Moore

The last of those is only one example of the impressive selection of graphic novels that are available to me, for free. God, I love my library!

(OK, at this point I feel that I'm begging the universe to send some bullies to beat me up for my lunch money. Time to wrap this up.)

Honestly, once I can find a decent used bookstore down here, I'll be utterly content, book-wise. (Well, that and an FLGS beyond the crappy WotC store in the mall, though the Border's RPG section is noteworthy: beyond a ton of varied WW and d20 stuff, it also has things like Children of the Sun). I must admit that Autumn Leaves spoiled me, so I'll ask a lot of any used bookstore I do find.

In any case: books good, bullies bad. G'night folks, I'll be here all week!

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August 2009

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