Monday, November 26, 2007

Foggy Blurry Midtown

It's not poor image quality from a cellphone, it's art. Enjoy.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Classical Music on Pandora

As mentioned on their blog and my mailbox, Pandora has classical music.
I'm excited. I can now be cultured and only mildly distracted at work at the same time.

The Pandora email has links to stations: (I like the Symphonic, Romantic Period)

Friday, November 9, 2007

Blackwater - The Rise Of The World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army

Bartered this book from a co-worker for 'Survivor' (see last post)

Started: 11/9/2007
Finished: 12/11/2007

I've always been lukewarm on the exposé novel genre, but maybe that just stems from my distrust of non-fiction to be entertaining. After reading the book I came to realize that I stand correct in my assumptions. This book suffers from the same problem all non-fiction literature is plagued with: there is one grand point to be made in the entire book. The rest of the book feels like a book report (albeit a well written one). Scahill makes his point early on in the book, and keeps talking about the same thing for the rest of the book. It's not as bad as the 'dead horse beating' in The World Is Flat, but there is something very off putting here. There is a distinct lack of a cohesive narrative. The book picks up in certain parts with the stories of several mercenaries, lawsuits, etc, but for the most part it reads like a research paper.

For these exact reasons, this took me like a month to read.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Survivor - Chuck Palahnuik

I felt as if I've had it to easy in my recent bouts with literature, so I've decided to go for something more serious.

Survivor is written backwards. The first page in the book is numbered 2xx and the pages count down to 1. This way I know how much I have left to go. It seems a fairly odd but fitting style of layout.

The narration, layout, etc are all done in a similar style to style to Fight Club. The narrative is hindsight aware retelling of events that have already happened with in the order that the narrator percieves them leading to his current state. There is the slightly offsetting amount of Home Economics details offered by the author, also in some sense similar to the information conveyed by Ed Norton's character in Fight Club.

I'm half way through the book, and it feels like I'm going to borrow another one: Choke

It seems as if Palanhuik really enjoyed Psychology in college (or is still teaching). The references and usage of the DSM and the various disorders were humorous and nostalgic. As far as social commentary, this is a much darker than what I've been recently reading.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Boomsday - Christopher Buckley

A modern version of Jonathan Swift's 'A Modest Proposal'.

This book centered around the idea of the surmounting Social Security debt imposed by the Baby Boomer ('46 to '62) generation on the current generation. The proposed solution involved 'Voluntary Transitioning' : having old people volunteer to kill themselves after the age of 65 for tax benefits.

A light and humorous read, the book took me about 5 days to read Oct-1 to Oct-5 2007.

up next ... Chuck Palahniuk, maybe