What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by nisiprius » Sun Jun 21, 2015 9:37 pm

One of the characters in Alexander McCall Smith's "44 Scotland Street" series makes a favorable remark about Ian Rankin, author of a detective series set in Edinburgh, so I gave it a try. I didn't much like Resurrection Men and got totally befuddled by wheels-within-wheels betrayals, but I got to the end, and I thought I'd try the first book in the series--series writers often start to lose some steam after the tenth book or so. So, I read Knots and Crosses and truly did not like it. One part of the story concerns two prisoners, who are adults of normal intelligence, who apparently play unending games of naughts and crosses (tic-tac-toe), and eventually one of them start to teach the other the secrets of tic-tac-toe strategy. Pretty hard to suspend disbelief. This is one of those detective books in which a deranged but brilliant criminal sends a detective teasing, mocking letters, challenging the detective to catch him... which I always find hard to believe, too.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Grateful1 » Sun Jun 21, 2015 11:29 pm

Just finished SCORPION DOWN ... Sunk by the Soviets, Buried by the Pentagon: The Untold Story of the USS Scorpion by Ed Offley.
It recounts the loss of the nuclear submarine USS Scorpion (SSN-598) at sea on Memorial Day May 27, 1968.

This book will especially appeal to those who grew up during the cold war or who want to better understand that period. Though the public was told our nuclear submarine Scorpion with 90+ American sailors aboard was sunk due to a mechanical problem it was actually sunk by a torpedo from a Russian submarine.

This is an EXTREMELY well researched book

It was interesting to learn how aggressive and harassing our actions were towards soviet subs including many purposeful collisions prior to this incident. It also reveals the very great espionage damage done by the John A. Walker spy case and the Pueblo incident which together allowed the Soviets to read the U.S. Navy's encrypted communications for many years.

It is eye opening to learn the lengths and depths our own government has gone to in order to keep information from the public. The events chronicled in this book are thought provoking and further diminished my naive trust in government. Though past performance does not predict future results ... extrapolating forward from this episode makes one wonder how little truth we are likely being told about the current world and how many lies and misinformation we are fed.

Besides being informative the book is actually quite a good read. I'd recommend it and rate it 3+ stars.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by a » Mon Jun 22, 2015 8:23 am

Ray Kurzweil, How to Create a Mind

What is responsible for the phenomenon of denial?

When people hear a truth that counters their current belief,
it seems that it is to prevent the organism (viewing from
an evolutionary advantage perspective) from having to do
extra work. We have invested much in our belief system and
some beliefs really ARE subjective. For example, if I think
apples are the best fruit, I may have made friends with an
apple orchard owner to get cheap, quick apples, and if someone
tells me that oranges are better in every way, it makes
SENSE for me to resist because I don't really lose anything
by sticking to my beliefs that apples are great and it would be
extra work (or the loss of current infrastructure) to switch
to eating oranges. (Note: I personally wouldn't really do
the above)

If this is the reason, then whenever we hear a counter truth,
the amount of resistance
should be proportional to the amount of work required to switch
beliefs. This seems to be true.

This is a good example of the fact that much processing goes
on in the unconscious. When you first hear a truth, you are
not conscious of all the links the brain traverses to calculate
all the ramifications of the new truth being true. Yet you feel
the weight of its final summation.

Generally, people come to accept the truth after some time
(when it's an objective truth).
Why do some people seem to overcome denial
more quickly than others? I think when you have a goal,
it requires that you DO understand truthful laws about the
world. (To effect change in the world or yourself
requires that your premises are valid. It would be like
someone trying to design an engine with incorrect laws
of thermodynamics.) Thus maybe we can equate goal
setters with people who value truth. (Note: many people
have goals but if they are not committed to them, they
don't really count as goals.)

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by MP173 » Tue Jun 23, 2015 11:02 am

"George Harrison - Behind the Locked Door" by Graeme Thomson.

This is a very en depth look at the "Quiet Beatle" from his childhood thru his death and post death details.

As a tribute, I a learning to play "Here Comes the Sun" on guitar. My wife is sick of it, but hey...it is a classic.

Ed

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by gkaplan » Tue Jun 23, 2015 6:38 pm

I just finished Murder Plays House, the fifth book in the Mommy-Track mystery series written by Ayelet Waldman.
Gordon

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by perries » Tue Jun 23, 2015 9:18 pm

Imagining the World into Existence: an Ancient Egyptian Manual of Consciousness by Normandi Ellis

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by black jack » Tue Jun 23, 2015 11:31 pm

Grateful1 wrote:Just finished SCORPION DOWN ... Sunk by the Soviets, Buried by the Pentagon: The Untold Story of the USS Scorpion by Ed Offley.
It recounts the loss of the nuclear submarine USS Scorpion (SSN-598) at sea on Memorial Day May 27, 1968.

This book will especially appeal to those who grew up during the cold war or who want to better understand that period. Though the public was told our nuclear submarine Scorpion with 90+ American sailors aboard was sunk due to a mechanical problem it was actually sunk by a torpedo from a Russian submarine.

This is an EXTREMELY well researched book

It was interesting to learn how aggressive and harassing our actions were towards soviet subs including many purposeful collisions prior to this incident. It also reveals the very great espionage damage done by the John A. Walker spy case and the Pueblo incident which together allowed the Soviets to read the U.S. Navy's encrypted communications for many years.

It is eye opening to learn the lengths and depths our own government has gone to in order to keep information from the public. The events chronicled in this book are thought provoking and further diminished my naive trust in government. Though past performance does not predict future results ... extrapolating forward from this episode makes one wonder how little truth we are likely being told about the current world and how many lies and misinformation we are fed.

Besides being informative the book is actually quite a good read. I'd recommend it and rate it 3+ stars.

Your review reminded me of a song I hadn't heard in a while: Phil Ochs' "The Scorpion Departs and Never Returns" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cKaNxA-V3_E
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by seeshells » Wed Jun 24, 2015 9:02 pm

The New Lombard Street: How the Fed became the Dealer of Last Resort , by Perry Mehrling. Again....and "Reminiscences of a Stock Operator" by Lefevere, Markman, and Jones, again.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by gkaplan » Thu Jun 25, 2015 1:01 am

I just finished The Cradle Robbers by Ayelet Waldman.

Sandra Logeree, incarcerated, in Dartmore State Prison, has enlisted full-time mom, part-time private investigator Juliet Applebaum to locate the son Sandra surrendered to foster care – as well as the foster parents who have disappeared with him. Juliet's new case, however, takes a deadly detour when the desperate young mother is knifed to death, allegedly by another inmate. Juliet is determined to make Sandra's last wish come true.

This is the sixth in the author's Mommy-Track mystery series.
Gordon

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by ruralavalon » Thu Jun 25, 2015 10:27 am

A Short History of Reconstruction, by Eric Foner. Very informative history of Reconstruction beginning with the Emancipation Proclamation in1863 and ending in about 1877. Focuses on the black family, church and social institutions, labor codes, crop failures, railroad expansion and corruption, the depression of the 1870's, as well as the politics and violence of that time.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Fallible » Fri Jun 26, 2015 9:45 pm

The Wright Brothers by David McCullough. How the brothers knew what to do, when to do it, how to do it, what to look for, what came next after failure, is as fascinating as the actual flights. And beyond actual flying skills are more innate skills: they are good writers, savvy promoters, and good judges of character, a touching example of which is Amos I. Root, a beekeeper who beautifully writes a first accurate eyewitness account of the early flights in an issue of, yes, "Gleanings in Bee Culture." And there is the tight knit, talented Wright family, a story in itself. It was my first book (in addition to articles) on the Wrights and I'm glad it was McCullough's.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by gkaplan » Sat Jun 27, 2015 6:27 pm

I just finished Bye-Bye, Black Sheep by Ayelet Waldman.

Heavenly has come to Juliet Applebaum with a story too sad for any private investigator with a conscience to turn down. Her sister, an addict and streetwalker, has turned up dead – and the police could not care less. With any luck, and with Juliet doing all she can, Heavenly will learn what she can about her sister's death and, if possible, bring the killer to justice.

This is the seventh and, unfortunately the last, in the author's Mommy-Track mystery series. It is, perhaps, the best of the Mommy-Track books, which makes it even more unfortunate that Ms. Waldman chose to end the series.
Gordon

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by telemark » Sun Jun 28, 2015 12:03 pm

Terry Pratchett's _Raising Steam_. I'm not a Pratchett completist (unlike some members of my family), but I've read enough to understand that he uses the Discworld as a platform for whatever he wants to write about. In this case what he wanted to write about seems to be mostly politics. I don't particularly understand U.K. politics, but it's hard not to read this one as a commentary on the immigration debate; it feels like an extended lecture on the importance of embracing change and tolerating other people. Nothing I don't agree with, but not quite what I was expecting from a Discworld book. Also, for a nominal fantasy there's very little magic; almost but not quite none at all.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by ruralavalon » Wed Jul 01, 2015 5:06 pm

Jacksonland, by Steve Inskeep. Covers the history of the removal of Indians from the southeastern U.S. and the parallel political lives of Andrew Jackson and John Ross from 1814 through 1838. This is an excellent book in my opinion.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by nisiprius » Sat Jul 04, 2015 5:54 am

The Reminiscences of a Stock Operator, by Edwin Lefevre, Jon D. Markman. Specifically, The Reminiscences of a Stock Operator Collection, Wiley Investment Classics, a slightly weird offering containing three versions of the same book: the original book unadorned; the collection of magazine articles on which the book was based; and an annotated edition of the book, annotated by Jon Markman, which is what I'm reading. The notes are as interesting to me as the text, and there's not a chance I could begin to understand what's going on without them.

Now to begin with I have no idea what I'm actually reading here. It's a novel, folks. It's fiction. Markman says that it is a lightly fictionalized version of Jesse Livermore and that Lefevre made extensive interviews, and identifies other fictionalized firms and people such as E. F. Hutton. The fact remains it's a novel, and it is based on Livermore's own presentation of his own life--there's no particular reason to think anything in it is true or that Livermore was able to do the things he said he could do.

One thing. You don't have to read ten pages of this to realize that either the stock market of today is a totally different thing from the stock market of that era, in which case we shouldn't even think of combining pre-SEC and post-SEC data to create long-term data sets--or, and this is scary, that it really is essentially the same thing as the stock market of that era, in which case... well... even an index fund isn't a long enough pole with which to touch it.

I'm only a few chapters in. Biggest revelation so far: before they were outlawed, Livermore and most retail investors were using bucket shops which, I hadn't understood, did not trade stocks at all--they were gambling operations, pure and simple, based on reading a stock ticker without actually buying or selling stocks, with the bucket shop making its money on a (basically arbitrary, imposed by the shop) bid-asked spread and/or by cheating customers. The interesting thing is that Livermore claims that he did better at these than at the real stock market, before they kicked him out for winning too much, because the bucket shop was treating the ticker numbers as instantaneous--and unaffected by the bets placed by players--whereas in the real stock market, the ticker lagged behind the real price, and the price could be moved by a large trade. So if Livermore correctly sensed through his tape-reading intuition that a stock was about to move down, by the time his order was executed it had already moved down (and his trade might have moved it down even further).
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by LadyGeek » Sat Jul 04, 2015 9:34 am

LadyGeek wrote:Shift, by Hugh Howey. This is book #2 of the Silo series. I like it nearly as much as the first one.

Dust, by Hugh Howey. This is book #3 of the Silo series. I like it nearly as much as the second one.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by letsgobobby » Sat Jul 04, 2015 9:45 am

nisiprius wrote:One thing. You don't have to read ten pages of this to realize that either the stock market of today is a totally different thing from the stock market of that era, in which case we shouldn't even think of combining pre-SEC and post-SEC data to create long-term data sets--or, and this is scary, that it really is essentially the same thing as the stock market of that era, in which case... well... even an index fund isn't a long enough pole with which to touch it.

I have long felt it is the latter. Beyond the book you're reading, which I enjoyed very much when I read whatever version I read 20 years ago, the fact that human beings are in charge of the markets suggests to me that the markets have not changed, and will never change, in content. The form may become unrecognizable - high frequency trading, computerized algorithms, electronic marketplaces as contrasted to bucket shops and ticker tape - but the animal instincts of greed and fear are still at the core of investing. The failure of most major finance shops to accurately gauge the risks of the credit boom are exhibit A. You didn't have to be a genius to see the risk: you just couldn't be willfully blind. That so many of them missed it, or saw the risk and thought they could out-trade their competition around the risk, spoke to the raw emotions in charge even at the top of the most powerful corporations in the world. Not impressed. Very frightening. And no reason to think we aren't already right back in the same place, again.

My 60/40 portfolio and willingness to tactically allocate is predicated on this belief.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by htdrag11 » Sat Jul 04, 2015 9:56 am

Just "fun" reading, The Child 44 Trilogy by Tom Rob Smith. I felt the pace of the 2nd one, The Secret Speech, seems to be more fast paced. I'll get to the last one later this month. Each is about 400 pages with large white spaces.

The details of the post-Stalin era is fascinating. Power surely corrupts, just like North Korea.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by heartwood » Sat Jul 04, 2015 10:20 am

Finders Keepers by Stephen King. It follows some of the same characters of Mr. Mercedes. I'm a third of the way through it. So far at least its a straight murder/detective/mystery book. None of the paranormal themes sometimes found in King. I've enjoyed so much of his ouvre; but not all. I look back at his works and just wonder where he gets it all across so many genre.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by letsgobobby » Sat Jul 04, 2015 12:53 pm

Rocky Mountain wrote:I just finished "The life-changing magic of tidying up" by Marie Kondo. It's motivated me to get started. If only life would get out of the way so I can take it to completion.

I also just read this book, in March. It's really something. It works.

We downsized from 4400 to 1350 sf (not entirely intentionally) and I got rid of more than half my clothes, half my camping stuff, acres of books, a fair amount of kitchen supplies, and have yet to miss one thing. I look around and can see I could probably lose another half my stuff and barely miss a beat.

I cannot recommend this book enough!

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by bertilak » Sat Jul 04, 2015 1:43 pm

Chaucer's Canterbury Tales

Thirty people, a wide cross-section of 14th century English society, including Chaucer himself, are on a pilgrimage to Canterbury. This is a bit of a departure from other literature of the time in that it is focused on "plain folk," not just nobility. It is also written in the language spoken by the average person -- English -- instead of Latin. This was a new trend that Chaucer adopted.

Each pilgrim was to tell two tales on the way to Canterbury and two tales on the way back but Chaucer never finished so there are only about (I think) 24 tales told.

The tales range from reverent to bawdy. Included are history, legends, fables (Greek and Arthurian) and more. Several will be familiar to most educated people. Chaucer himself tells one of the tales.

Also on the journey is the innkeeper of the place the pilgrims congregated to start the journey, referred to throughout as the host. He holds things together by leading the pilgrimage and selecting the tale-tellers as they go. Some of the more fun and interesting parts are not the tales themselves but the interactions between the host and the individual pilgrims.

The host always has something to say about each tale and he is not always pleased. For example, he cuts short Chaucer's very own tale with the following:

    "Namoore of this, for Goddes dignitee,"
    Quod oure Hoste, "for thou makest me
    So wery of thy verray lewdness
    ...
    Thy drasty rhyming is nat worth a toord!"
In translation:
    "No more of this, by God!" our host declared,
    "This arrant drivel of yours makes me tired!
    God be my witness, it makes my ears ache
    ...

    (I leave the last line's translation up to you. "Drasty" is a good, but rare, modern English word that I have added to my vocabulary!)
The host was right. Chaucer's tale was vapid and meandering -- as he intended it to be, a parody of tales of knights and chivalry. The hero of the tale had only one battle before Chaucer was cut off by the host. Our hero fled in fear as he was pelted with stones. When hunting he (bravely) hunted deer and rabbits. None of this wild boor stuff for him! Reminded me just a little of what Cervantes did with Don Quixote two centuries later.

Here's a little something from The Merchant's Tale:
    A wyf is Goddes yifte verraily;
    All othere manere yiftes
    ...
    Alle been yiftes of Fortune,
    That passen as a shadwe upon a wal,
    But drede nat, if pleynly speke I shal,
    A wyf wol laste, and in thyn hous endure,
    Wel lenger than thee list, paraventure.

In translation:
    Undoubtedly a wife’s the gift of God,
    For every other kind of gift indeed,
    Are the gifts of Fortune, one and all,
    And fleeting as a shadow on a wall:
    But never fear – for let me tell you plain,
    A wife will last, and in your house remain
    A good deal longer than you bargained for.

The tales are lots of fun. I can read the original Middle English with the help of a side-by-side translation or gloss but that ruins the experience because I don't have a chance to get into it, with constant mental interruptions to translate. The theory is, if one reads an original language version with a gloss one will start to pick up on the language to the point where the need for a gloss is no longer intrusive. I have tried but apparently not tried hard enough! So I read a translation, of which I have a couple. Sometimes if one translation seems a bit awkward I take a look at the other one.

(David Wright Translations above)
Listen very carefully. I shall say this only once. (There! I've said it.)

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by letsgobobby » Sat Jul 04, 2015 2:29 pm

bertilak wrote:"Drasty" is a good, but rare, modern English word that I have added to my vocabulary!)

Is 'drasty' analogous to my patients' use of the word 'droggy', as in, "that medicine's ok but it makes me kind of droggy?"

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by bertilak » Sat Jul 04, 2015 3:09 pm

letsgobobby wrote:
bertilak wrote:"Drasty" is a good, but rare, modern English word that I have added to my vocabulary!)

Is 'drasty' analogous to my patients' use of the word 'droggy', as in, "that medicine's ok but it makes me kind of droggy?"

Drasty is not a way you feel, but what someone's opinion of you might be and that's not a kind opinion. There might be some overlap, English being as flexible as it is, but Drasty is, well, nastier, than Droggy as used in your example.
Listen very carefully. I shall say this only once. (There! I've said it.)

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by nisiprius » Sat Jul 04, 2015 3:33 pm

The Lost City: A Rick Brant Electronic Adventure (1947), by "John Blaine." I really wanted to read this one again. Some kids went for the Hardy Boys or Nancy Drew, I liked the Rick Brant Electronic Adventures. Some of the later ones must not have been copyrighted properly and are available at no cost via Project Gutenberg, but not the ones I really wanted. And... for some reason libraries are snooty about cheesy juvenile series books, even the Oz books, and I couldn't even get this one through interlibrary loan. So, a second-hand purchase it was.

It may just be the joy of re-reading after some fifty years, but IMHO this series was really skillfully done... although marred by, you know, national stereotypes (they tend to be travelogues and the protagonists always end up in seedy parts of foreign cities, confronted by menacing ethnicities), and sexism:
[Rick Brant's sister] Barby Brant, a very pretty girl a year younger than Rick, was pecking at her food, a petulant expression on her face. He knew why: Barby had hoped all along that her parents would allow her to go on the expedition [to Tibet].... "Why did I have to be a girl?" she mourned.
And, alas, I am now so old that I think I recognize what I call "plot band-aids." These are sudden little conversations that pop up out of the blue, in which someone says "but why can't you just..." and someone else explains "because." I always suspect that these are plot holes that get discovered when the book is almost complete, and the writer is forced to slap a band-aid on them.

The "electronic" premise of the book is to develop reliable long-distance radio communication by bounding radar signals off the moon. This seems like a perfectly workable idea, though with terrible problems due to high signal attenuation, and I'm surprised it was never--oh, actually, it was.

At any rate, here comes the plot band-aid. They are about to mount a scientific expedition to Tibet to set up a remote station to communicate by moon-bounce to Spindrift Island, New Jersey, and kid sister Barby pipes up
I don't see why they have to go all the way to Tibet! Why can't you bounce your old messages back to... to Whiteside?" Whiteside was the little town nearest them on the New Jersey mainland.
Good question, Barby. Or why not bounce them to Murray Hill, New Jersey where Bell Labs has a few sensitive receivers already deployed? The only answer is "because then there wouldn't be a story," and the band-aid is of fairly low quality:
The scientists smiled, and Hartson Brant explained: "It wouldn't quite suit our purpose, Barby." He pointed to the moon. "That piece of green cheese up there is the top of a triangle. Spindrift Island is another corner. We've chosen a plateau in Tibet for the third corner because it's just about the most distant point we could find.

"And for a good many other sound, scientific reasons," Julius Weiss added. "No, my dear, I'm afraid Whiteside just wouldn't do."
Right. Because the distance from Spindrift to the moon to Whiteside would be only 238,000 x 2 = 476,000 miles, while the distance from Spindrift to the moon to Tibet would be 2 x sqrt(238,000^2 + 4,000^2) = 2 x 238,034 miles = 476,068 miles. Let's travel 12,000 miles to get an extra 68 miles of signal distance.

Actually it looks to me as if Melbourne, Canberra, or Sydney would be closer to being antipodal to New Jersey than Tibet, and no need to hire exotic, colorful, horse-drawn gharries.

Don't underrate Barby Brant, though:
Barby's blue eyes suddenly filled with tears. She swallowed hard and said "Don't forget to be careful, please! I'm afraid. My ... my intuition tells me something awful is going to happen...."
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by letsgobobby » Sat Jul 04, 2015 3:54 pm

bertilak wrote:
letsgobobby wrote:
bertilak wrote:"Drasty" is a good, but rare, modern English word that I have added to my vocabulary!)

Is 'drasty' analogous to my patients' use of the word 'droggy', as in, "that medicine's ok but it makes me kind of droggy?"

Drasty is not a way you feel, but what someone's opinion of you might be and that's not a kind opinion. There might be some overlap, English being as flexible as it is, but Drasty is, well, nastier, than Droggy as used in your example.

got that, I should have been clearer: is drasty a portmanteau like droggy [drowsy + groggy]? Some old English word beginning with "dr..." and "nasty"?

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by bertilak » Sat Jul 04, 2015 5:54 pm

letsgobobby wrote:I should have been clearer: is drasty a portmanteau like droggy [drowsy + groggy]? Some old English word beginning with "dr..." and "nasty"?

http://www.thefreedictionary.com/Drasty
http://www.yourdictionary.com/drasty
https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/drasty

There are more but they all give the same definition: filthy; worthless. According to wiktionary the etymology is from Old English daerstan, dresten (“dregs”). So, not a portmanteau.

One translation of Canterbury Tales gives it a scatological interpretation which is somewhat justified by its reference to something compared to a "toord" immediately following.

Apparently it is in the OED but listed as obsolete. I think it deserves to be un-obsoleted!

The quote I gave seems to be popular. It is used a an example of "drasty" in a number of places. Ii's the only example I found with my cursory search.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by letsgobobby » Sat Jul 04, 2015 5:59 pm

This was the other common reference to drasty: a 2005 poem, available here:

http://www.poetryfoundation.org/poetrym ... oem/171983

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by snowshoes » Sat Jul 04, 2015 6:08 pm

The New Lombard St., How the Federal Reserve became the dealer of Last Resort, by Perry Merhling.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by bertilak » Sat Jul 04, 2015 6:12 pm

letsgobobby wrote:This was the other common reference to drasty: a 2005 poem, available here:

http://www.poetryfoundation.org/poetrym ... oem/171983

I'll bet that guy read this: http://www.poetryfoundation.org/poem/173170 before he wrote his poem!

A beach,
misguided shellfish without feet,
something about the general matter-of-fact tone with no remorse at their death.

Maybe I'm stretching things a bit. :happy
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by ruralavalon » Sun Jul 05, 2015 3:34 pm

Salt: A World History, by Mark Kurlansky. Interesting obscure facts about salt production, transportation, taxes, revolutions and politics, food preservation, cooking and other uses from pre-history through Morton Salt.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by ruralavalon » Thu Jul 09, 2015 4:00 pm

Lunatics,by Dave Barry and Alan Zweibel. Two New York soccer dads almost save the world.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by ruralavalon » Sun Jul 12, 2015 7:48 pm

The Wright Brothers, by David McCullough. Very interesting telling of the story of the Wright brothers and their family, their study of birds, development of a wind tunnel, glider experiments, development and flying of the first aircraft, and interaction with other early aviation pioneers.

Giving advice on how to succeed in life,"pick out a good father and mother, and begin life in Ohio." Wilbur Wright.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by LadyGeek » Sun Jul 12, 2015 8:14 pm

Once Dead, by Richard Phillips. This is Book 1 of the Rho Agenda Inception series. A spy thriller with a sci-fi twist. I can't put it down.

The Rho Agenda series was written first, this is the prequel series. I like to read things in time order.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by MP173 » Tue Jul 14, 2015 12:34 pm

I just finished Radiant Angel by Nelson Deville. John Corry must have eliminated all Muslim terrorist threats as he now turns his attention towards the Russians. Not as good as his past books, but not bad.

Also finished "Fire and Rain...The Beatles, Simon & Garfunkel, James Taylor, CSNY and the Lost Story of 1970" by David Browne. This is another look at popular music and what was occuring in the pivotable year of 1970. Pretty interesting look at the groups mentioned and how there lives were interwoven.

Ed

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by abuss368 » Tue Jul 14, 2015 3:04 pm

I am almost finished reading "King of Capital" which is a story of the building of The Blackstone Group. I enjoyed the book and would recommend it. Private Equity is an interesting read.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by ruralavalon » Tue Jul 14, 2015 7:33 pm

Murder in the Keweenaw, by Harley Sachs. While fishing in Lake Superior, a CIA agent on sick leave snags and hauls in a woman's body, calls the Coast Guard and turns over his catch, but can't help trying to figure out "who done it" and why. Not a classic murder mystery, but still interesting. The setting is about two miles from where we are staying on vacation.

Anatomy of a Murder, by Robert Traver. This is the classic murder mystery (with dozens of eye witnesses, there is no mystery at all about who did it, or what he did) set in Michigan's Upper Peninsula on the shores of Lake Superior. This is a realistic story of pre-trial investigation and a jury trial.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by snowshoes » Tue Jul 14, 2015 7:43 pm

King of Capital: An account of Steve Shwartzman's rise in venture capitals world. By Carey and Morris./ Same book as noted by abuss368 above.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by nisiprius » Tue Jul 14, 2015 8:39 pm

Mark Twain, The Innocents Abroad. I don't think I'm likely to finish it, though. I don't know if I should be surprised, but although it is funny, and written in an astonishingly modern-sounding voice, it is also rather irritable, snarky and mean-spirited. Apparently he did not like guides much, and he tells a story of how they amused themselves by refusing to react at all to anything the guide showed them, no matter how magnificent--and how every time the guide showed them a statue of someone, they would just ask the same question every time: "Is-- is he dead?"

File this under something to research someday:

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"A square meal" is a Californian phrase?
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by jabberwockOG » Tue Jul 14, 2015 10:00 pm

Gogol - Souls of the dead - Interesting soap opera style comedy of manners - misadventures of fops, cons, and fools of the Russian landed gentry and their minions in the 1840's. It along with many other classics that have passed into the public domain are avail free to download and read on my ipad. At this point in my life, just turned 60, I'm going back to some of the classic writers that I did not have adequate time for in my younger days. Hopefully find some gems amid the dross.

Also Redeployment by Phil Klay. Just won national book award. Powerful beautifully written book about our soldiers returning from the mideast war zones. Should be absolutely mandatory reading for every single person in the US over the age of 17.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by letsgobobby » Fri Jul 17, 2015 12:29 am

Mosquito Coast, Paul Theroux. Excellent, surpassed my expectations. The slow burn from eccentric inventive genius to manic, paranoid genius was well executed.

Bone Clocks, David Mitchell. Halfway through. Reminds me a bit of Junot Diaz. Wild ride. Some parts are heartachingly compelling.

Beauty and the Sorrow, Peter Englund. As the subtitle says, an Intimate History of the first world war. Stunning. The best war book I have ever read. Follows 20 or so real life players in the war, all minor characters. Visceral sense of the human tragedy of that war.

Netherland, Joseph O'Neill. Cricket, New York, a marriage on the rocks. Didn't do much for me.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by gkaplan » Fri Jul 17, 2015 12:32 am

I have been reading Beethoven: Anguish and Triumph: a Biography by Jan Swafford.

Swafford presents a detailed overview of the life of Beethoven, traveling from Enlightenment-era Bonn to the musical capital of Europe, Vienna, to vividly describe the composer's career, ill health, and romantic rejections. At over 900 pages, the book might seem somewhat overwhelming if it were not so interesting and well written, with the exception of some puzzling syntax at times. I do admit to skimming some of the technical explications of musical composition that were beyond my comprehension.

In addition to the text, the book includes a lengthy bibliography, exhaustive endnotes, many with interesting commentary, and an index that is elegant, well constructed, and generally thorough. I do think it would have been useful if the book had included an appendix of the works discussed in the text, at least those discussed in some length, along with their opus numbers and dates of composition.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by Blues » Fri Jul 17, 2015 7:27 am

letsgobobby wrote:Mosquito Coast, Paul Theroux. Excellent, surpassed my expectations. The slow burn from eccentric inventive genius to manic, paranoid genius was well executed.

Bone Clocks, David Mitchell. Halfway through. Reminds me a bit of Junot Diaz. Wild ride. Some parts are heartachingly compelling.

Beauty and the Sorrow, Peter Englund. As the subtitle says, an Intimate History of the first world war. Stunning. The best war book I have ever read. Follows 20 or so real life players in the war, all minor characters. Visceral sense of the human tragedy of that war.

Netherland, Joseph O'Neill. Cricket, New York, a marriage on the rocks. Didn't do much for me.


Agree on "Mosquito Coast".

I've read and didn't much care for the work of Junot Diaz. Perhaps that's why I've quit both "The Bone Clocks" and "Cloud Atlas" without completing them. (Rare for me.) I agree that some passages were very evocative.

"Netherland" didn't live up to expectation and I learned way more about cricket than I ever cared to know.

Just finished "Mother Night" by Vonnegut. Remains a classic after all these years...

...And for "summer" type reading, I've begun the "Joe Pickett" novels by C.J. Box. The first one, "Open Season", was a good tale, well told.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by bondsr4me » Fri Jul 17, 2015 7:35 am

Jack B's "The Little Book of Common Sense Investing"....just got yesterday from Barnes & Noble online.

Still reading BG's The Intelligent Investor too!

Have a great day trading....ooops, I mean market timing...uh, I mean INVESTING all you BH'ers :happy

Don

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by heartwood » Fri Jul 17, 2015 7:43 am

I just finished Memory Man by David Baldacci. Perhaps he's used the protagonist before. It's a ex-cop with total recall, and more, of everything he sees since a hit in his first NFL game. He becomes involved in several investigations and puts his memory to use. Too much brutal imagery for me. I won't say more about the plot.

I got to the end and found the list of Baldacci's works. It's very impressive.

I've just started Jeffery Deaver's Solitude Creek. The main character is one Deaver has written before, Kathryn Dance, an investigator for the California Bureau of Investigation. I've liked a lot of Deaver's work (another prolific author) but not all.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by JDot » Fri Jul 17, 2015 8:35 am

Atlas Shrugged. I'm convinced most people who love/hate it haven't really read it.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by SHL » Fri Jul 17, 2015 11:02 am

I was reading Mark Twain's Innocents Abroad, but got bogged down midway through it, so I read Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan instead, which was pretty entertaining.

Currently reading The Girl With All the Gifts by M. R. Carey, which is a real page-turner! :happy
Stephen

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by VictoriaF » Fri Jul 17, 2015 11:12 am

Blogging for Dummies by Susan Gunelius. I am on page-13 and already hooked.

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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by ruralavalon » Fri Jul 17, 2015 8:28 pm

Bear Creek, by Larry Bruege. A fun novel. A lumber company's Camp Number 13 by 1923 has become the village of Bear Creek, or Bare Creek, inhabited by miscellaneous misfits. The tale includes searching for lost hunters visiting from Chicago, a beaver dam, a new minister, an apparition that appears at full moons in the summer, a wedding, a honeymoon trip by wagon, a whiskey still in the woods, a heavy bet (to raise money for a stove to heat the church) on a hockey game, a child lost in a blizzard, chaperoning an annual teenagers' canoe trip (no one ever chaperoned it twice) and much more.

"True Yoopers never left the U.P. Having been told by other Yoopers this was God's country, they felt no desire to wander."

"There was no reason to come to Bear Creek, nothing ever happened at Bear Creek. But the Yoopers that lived there didn't care -- they didn't know any better."
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by ruralavalon » Sun Jul 19, 2015 6:30 pm

Forgotten Tales of Michigan's Upper Peninsula, by Lisa A. Shiel. Odd stories about the U.P. in the late 19th and early 20th centuries about earthquakes, wildlife, miners, loggers, ships, railroading, crimes, crazy behavior, and folk tales, all based on newspaper articles of the time.
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Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Post by indexmantra » Sun Jul 19, 2015 6:47 pm

I am a newbie here, so I apologize if I intrude in any way. However, I am reading Bogle on Mutual funds, and I am enjoying it a lot. I find that Bogle's ideas are so simple, yet so tightly packed with useful information for the everyday investor.

And I am so happy to have found this site.

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