Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Innaguarl Winter Short Stories Festival 2:27

Who would want to kidnap Santa Clause?  Will the old demons of wanton behavior be able to upset the kids on Christmas?  Will the Spirit of Christmas prevail, find out in the Kidnapped Santa Clause by L. Frank Baum.  L. Frank Baum "The Kidnapped Santa Clause"

Oh to be Scottish

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Innaguarl Christmas Short Stories Festival 1:27

We begin the Christmas Short Story Festival Year One 2011, with the master of the Christmas stories, Charles Dickens: The Haunted House by Charles Dickens.(Listen to on Libri Vox)


The most haunted house is haunted most by our past experiences.  Or do ghosts really haunt the house?  This question is answered in the story, The Haunted House.  A remembrance of friends and family together again.
Not included on the Libri Vox recording was the second part of The Haunted House by Charles Dickens, titled The Ghost in Master B.'s Room The first part dealt with the outer ghosts that may haunt us this Christmas; the second part deals with the inner parts that may haunt us during the holiday, that we are the thing that is to be afraid, that we are in care of a skeleton as a mortal companion.

Review: The Trouble With Paris

(Caveat Lector: If you are troubled by Christian Books than this post is not for you.  So sorry! But I am excited for my review here and think it is worthy to share.  I originally published this review on Polycarp 55 my non-secular blog.) 
Mark Sayer’s book The Trouble with Paris examines the way Modern Consumerism has been exalted to the “New Religion”.  Sayers shows that corporate America has erected plastic Idols that manipulate consumers to always want more, and more, and even more of that plastic stuff.  But just like that song by the Rolling Stones, "I Can't Get No Satisfaction"  the believer is left empty.    “Human beings are used and discarded like Styrofoam boxes that held junk food.”1 

When we worship made things instead of our LORD we are left with a hyper-reality.   This hyper-reality is a vacuum that leaves worshipers empty.    “Reality is not considered an impediment to desire.”2 Corporate America has a vested interest in keeping us unhappy so they can cure this pain by supplying us with endless happy meals with a toy included inside.  
Sayer also states that our kill joys happen when we compare ourselves with the Joneses.   When Mr. Jones buys a new Corvette, or moves to the better part of town; he leaves us with our broken down car, and our adequate house we feel a sense of shame that we are not making enough.  
The American Debt traders say, “Don’t worry be happy, and buy this new Chevrolet; if you don’t you’ll regret your life forever!”  The market also attempts to terrorize us with too many choices, just look down the aisle for Spaghetti sauce.   What is the best one?  There are way too many to compare, how do we make a decision without that feeling of guilt?  We could stand there for thirty minutes, in order to make a good decision. 
Death is the spotlight that the creed of hyper-reality is fraudulent and a heretical religion.  More money cannot conquer the effects of gravity and the ultimate end from this world.   But we can control our expectations.

The good

Mark Sayers brings an important thesis to the Mass Market Christian.

The bad

The book stumbles in some of its Theological Presuppositions.   I am not sure that Sayers has a firm grasp on the triune god; it seemed that he made Jesus a separate entity from God.   This is a classical heretical misstep. 

The Conclusion

“Christian Lite” book that will sharpen our focus on our relationship to and in Consumer America.

1Hedges, Chris. "American Psychosis." Adbusters (2010). Print.
2 Ibid.  

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

When you've seen your family talking politics, when its 75 degrees outside and "Florida Novembers" do not feel like proper weather, when the day promises heavy stomachs from overeating, when the conclusion that your life has not yet meet the "great expectations", when everyone only hopes to stay pleasantly blah, when the only pleasure you can anticipate is the country roads to grandma's house, then you remind yourself of the importance of family and you go to celebrate Thanksgiving anyway.

Reading "What is a Sentence" by Stanley Fish.  A book that should be the Grey's Annatomy for all Writers.
This is an excercise from that book.  Here is form, so that you can give it a go!
When an outside occurance:
When the day promises:
When a concluding remark about yourself:
When hope for everybody involved.
When (the best anticipation)
Then (a concluding remark that all of these ideas are subject to).  

Monday, November 21, 2011


The week of November 25 through the December 2nd buy locally and support local people.  Local people, are the back bone for free enterprise in your neighborhood.  Buy form Saturday Markets. Buy from local artists. Use your money to support not mega corporations.  Use your money to support the local artist.     

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Library Notes/Reading Ventures/Writing Bones

Lewis Carrol 
Twas brilling, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wave;
All mimsy were the borogroves,
And the mome raths outgrabe.

My Writing

Twas Sunday, and the church bells
Did ring and shaped my steps yesterday;
All gone were my keys,
And the church bells rung.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Library Notes/Reading Ventures/Writing Bones

Reading "What is a Sentence" by Stanley Fish.  A book that should be the Grey's Annatomy for all Writers.

Here is an exercise: using the Jabberwoky as a form  to copy and then put real words into the descriptive phrase.

Twas brilling, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wave;
All mimsy were the borogroves,
And the mome raths outgrabe.

My Writing

Twas stroming and the orange clouds,
Did dash and break in the sky;
All huddled were the guinea pigs,
And the love bird yelped.

This book shows the writer how "forms are the engines of creativity." page 30

By the way, I wish I would have read this book sooner as it is the basics that enable a writer to write well.   So if you struggle at writing, like I do, then go and get How To Write a Sentence by Stanley Fish.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Book Reviews: The Talented Mr. Ripley

The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

     Tom Ripley calculated murder like a mathematician solving a difficult proof; with painstaking precision he scratched to uncover his way into a power.  He imagines someday being tied to the power brokers.   Then the unexpected happens, a rich man with a favor sends Tom packing to Europe.  As Shakespeare said, “Some are born with it; others are propelled into by life’s allegiances and currents.”(Paraphrased for Emphasis)  Tom was the type that has been pushed forward by his unexpected involvement with the rich expatriates hanging out in the 1950’s Post-War Europe.   A perfect place for those seeking exile outside of the policed 1950’s U.S.A.

  Will he get away from the swift and shocking events that have propelled his life forward?  Patricia Highsmith asks the moral questions: “Does life deal out just desserts?   Do we get what we deserve; is there a law of karma?

   I enjoyed this book a lot.  Although at times I had a hard time suspending disbelief. I do not think that Tom would find it today so easy to cover up his steps.   This disbelief kept me from enjoying it to the fullest.

   The book also reminded me a lot of a modern adaptation, “American Psycho” by Brett Easton Ellis.   I wonder if Tom Ripley is one of the sources for Ellis’s character Patrick Bateman.

The Talented Mr. Ripley  is a classic example of the Anti-Hero in American Literature. #27 in my Top 100 List.
The Talented Mr. Ripley (Ripley, #1)

View all my reviews

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

 1955 Times of the Talented Mr. Ripley

Friday, November 11, 2011

Listen On Librivox

Command and teach these things. Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity. (1Ti 4:11-12)

Review of Four Day Planet by H. Beam Piper 3:14 of the Terro-Human Future History

The young man Walt, the only reporter on a treacherous planet tells the news on a dangerous planet.  He dreams of one day being honored with the ability to be able to hunt for monsters and the profitable wax that come from them.   He also yearns to be taken seriously by the leaders of his community, through his truthful telling of the news.   The story explores the dissemination of language; what language needs to be heard in order to maintain civilization in a cultural outpost.   The book fell flat half way through the telling.   I finished the book, just to finish it.  Four Day Planet is a shipwreck story with a wrecked narrative.  
DamnedDamned by Chuck Palahniuk

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is a book that should be read by church members, but will probably never be read there. It goes over our philosophy of hell and what is its meaning in the 21st century. A read that is funny all over, and evokes one to tell our own story. The use of the Breakfast Club is tremendous, as the movie seems to be a seminal story for my generation.

View all my reviews

Although it was not very much liked by the crew over at the Onion. Read their review.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Oakland: Colorado County

Emperor Claudius

Claudius Jones was the owner of the Cyaxares Bookstore.  He reigned with a dignity that makes a blue-haired librarian proudly pet her cat.   He would assign his patrons books to read and reports to write or he would never sell them a book again.

El Camino: Borderland States


January 1997, Mt. Sinai, 4:30 AM}   
We climb Mt Sinai with flashlights in our hands.  We cling to the rocks.   Camel Jockeys shout in the dim light, “You want Camel?  Twenty-five dollars!” 
I reply, “We’re American’s I need no camel to get up this darn mountain.” 
Our flashlights go out.  
We quickly stumble on.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Listen On Librivox

Omnilingual  part 2 of 13 of the Terro Human Future History by H. Beam Piper 

Scientists excavate the ruins on mars to find the key to the missing language for a martian civilization dated to be 50,000 years missing.   The story provides the reader a platform to see H. Beam Piper's questions reasoned out.  

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Haiku  To Walking on Ice-Cubes

Wandering on ice 
cubes, prone to melt through our
feet; splash wet blue.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Listen On Librivox

The Edge of the Knife part 1 of 13 of the Terro Human Future History

The Science Fiction Novella, the Edge of the Knife, written by H. Beam Piper, formulated truth is vital in a free society, especially when truth may create unrest.    Piper hid his important message in the passages of Science Fiction Publications;

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Book Reviews:

The Postman Always Rings TwiceThe Postman Always Rings Twice by James M. Cain

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

mad dogs and loony cats should not mix; but they make for a perfect tragic story

The Postman Always Rings Twice, by James Cain, is told just like they played it. The description of the old Gas Station in the middle of nowhere, on a lone highway, is a model for setting (I hope to someday achieve). The story traces a sordid love triangle, and the administration of justice to the perfect crime.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Movie Reivews

 The truth is out there, or is it?  This is the question posed by Zenith, a film written by and directed by Vladan Nikolic.   This is his fourth film, following his movies Burn (2001),  Love (2005), and the City (2007).   
The film according to IMDB is described
 as “a retro futuristic steam-punk 

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