Musings from Brian J. Noggle
Saturday, October 14, 2006
Author Coming to Town
The Programs Coordinator for the St. Louis [City] Public Library has informed me that Daniel Woodrell, the author upon whose works I commented in August, is coming to town:
    The St. Louis Public Library and Big Sleep Books are pleased to host author Daniel Woodrell. He will discuss and sign his new book, Winter's Bone, November 15 at 7pm at the Schlafly Branch Library, 225 N. Euclid Ave. Books for sale will be provided by Big Sleep Books. This event is free and open to the public. For more information, call 314-206-6779. Winter's Bone follows a 16-year-old heroine named Ree as she hunts for her drug-dealing father, while trying to keep her family intact. The book, set in Missouri's Ozarks region, is earning comparisons to True Grit. Daniel Woodrell lives in the Missouri Ozarks. Winter's Bone is his eighth novel and has just been selected as the 2007 ReadMOre book.
Well, there you go; or there you might go, but I'll probably skip it.

In a side note, the Programs Coordinator represents the third person with whom I went to high school to contact me out of the blue this week. Weird.

Friday, October 13, 2006
Book Report: Kings and Queens of England and Great Britain by Eric R. Delderfield (1975)
Book Report: Kings and Queens of England and Great Britain by Eric R. Delderfield (1975) As you know, gentle reader, I am something of an Anglophile as long as it doesn't require actually traveling to Britain or liking, really, anyone or anything currently British. I was an English major, though, and as much as I tilted the degree toward American writers, I couldn't escape the constraints of my collegiate upbringing. Plus, I think it's interesting the progression of the English monarches throughout much of the relevant history of the Western world.

Consider this book to be a more detailed version than Britain's Kings and Queens: 63 Reigns in 1100 Years, which I reviewed three years ago. That pamphlet, from the same time period as the edition of this book that I read, summed up the leaders and the effects their rules had upon England and Europe at large; this book, though, offers more verbosity in the leaders' lifetimes and occasional sections into the time periods. Of course, this book is worth more than the pamphlet I reviewed in 2003, but it's an expansion on the themes and rules therein.

Both books I've reviewed come from the early 1970s, so there's not been much change in the lineage aside from the marriage of Charles III (projected) and the divorce of Charles III (projected) and his issue. Still, in the 1970s, the chroniclers had a certain (as sports fans now call it) homer sentiment; that is, the introduction of this book admits that the early rulers were barbaric, but the early times were barbaric, but that the home team (Britain) eventually turned out okay and that its influence on the world was good. As an American conservative, I respect that (and apply it to my own country).

This edition (ca 1975) offered me enough trivia and Britainnia to be worthwhile; I cannot speak to the late editions, but I don't think they'll be any less interesting.

On a side note, I'll let you know, gentle reader, that I was a little ashamed of recovering the same territory that I mentioned in my review of the Bellews book. Until such time as I discovered when I covered that book, that is. I thought I'd read that book this year, or perhaps late last year. When the beauty that is this blog revealed that I read that earlier pamphlet 3 years ago, I was stunned. What a different world that was, for me at least. What were you doing then, and was it as immediate for you as the 9th century was for me?

Books mentioned in this review:

Wednesday, October 11, 2006
The Untold Story
Lost emu raises ruckus on Route 3:
    Six times during the weekend, police here responded to the same call: a 100-pound emu running wild near Illinois Route 3.

    The 5-foot-tall bird caused quite a ruckus, especially when it wandered into traffic on the busy highway, Police Chief Richard Miller said.
Sure, when it was apprehended, the emu told the cops it was lost, but the word I heard on the street is that this particular emu was looking to hitchhike to Carbondale to settle a score.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006
Things That Would Have Made Much Less Sense in 1981
Kenny Rogers pitching to Milton Bradley

Let's face it, if you're going to go back in time and need to convince someone you're a time traveler, leave the 2006 American League Championship Series out of the conversation.

Hijinks Not A Felony, If You're The Police Chief's Son
In St. Charles, Missouri, two youths in an unmarked police unit pull over an off-duty police officer, who recognizes the youths as not really cops. The leader youth is charged with misdemeanor impersonating a police officer instead of the felony tampering or, you know, stealing a freaking police car.

The city of Ballwin, whose police car was misappropriated, chooses not to press charges:
    Banas said City Administrator Robert Kuntz had faxed a letter stating the following: "With regard to the case involving Brian Biederman and the use of his father's police vehicle, the city of Ballwin is not desirous of prosecution in this matter. Please find enclosed a notorized form of no prosecution from the city of Ballwin."
No doubt Ballwiin treats all youths, regardless of whether they're the fruit of the Police Chief's loins, with that amount of tolerance.

As a Family Man, I Understand
‘Shelby's made our family complete'

I completely get it. Although my life and family are wonderful, a Shelby would only make it better.

Monday, October 09, 2006
Self-Help Tip
Dr. Creepy Doctor Creepy says:

You must loathe yourself before you can truly loathe others.

Is There Anything Jail Cannot Solve?
Walk a dog without something to clean up after it? Go to jail in St. Charles:
    Like many municipalities, St. Charles for years has had a pooper-scooper law requiring pet owners to remove their animal's droppings while in public places.

    However, Councilman Jerry Reese says the new measure, which he got the council to pass last week, will make it easier for police and animal control officers to deal with the problem. No longer will a witness to the droppings be needed to make a case, he said.

    From now on, the ordinance books also will say that simply walking a pet without "waste removal equipment" in itself is a violation. Those convicted could be fined up to $500 or get up to three months in jail. The measure will take effect when Mayor Patti York signs it; she says she'll do that sometime this week.
Now the government wants to micromanage the minutiae like a subdivision association with SWAT teams standing by. Why don't we just get body armor and automatics for the building inspectors and get it done with?

Because Sometimes You Just Don't Have a Dead Chihuahua Handy
Woman charged with using baby as weapon

I think we need a seven day waiting period on babies. Also, a limitation on having more than one every month. And a registration, including safety classes, if you want to carry one in public.

Sunday, October 08, 2006
Newcomer Agitates In Favor Of Train Crossing Fatalities
No, he's against train whistles:
    rain horns are keeping Wentzville newcomer David Lutes up at night. "It was a great disappointment to move to Wentzville and hear so much noise at night," Lutes, 54, said. "On about the second night here, it was like (a train) was in our bedrooms." Lutes said he left Southern California for the clean air and convenience of Wentzville. He and his family absolutely love their new city — except for the nightly noise from train horns. A Wentzville resident for just about a month, Lutes has already established a community action group, Wentzville Against Noisy Traffic and Trains. He’s looking for others wanting more sleep and less noise at night to write aldermen and sign a petition urging the city to apply for a quiet zone with the Federal Railroad Administration.
I'd remind the fellow that train whistles are safety devices designed to prevent collisions with the train. But I expect the gentleman doesn't care as long as he gets his night's sleep.

Book Report: Unsolved Mysteries of the Past by Reader's Digest Books (1991)
This book is part of the Quest for the Unknown set, and I guess its schtick is that it's supposed to center around the past. It does have chapters on ley lines, old temples and sacred places, and whatnot, but it also lumps in lesser past things like mediums and some recent disappearances. It's not exhaustive nor even detailed in the subjects it covers, preferring a very browsable format with small articles and lots of photographs and sidebars.

Still, if you're jonesing for a Reader's Digest compendium of paranormal and other things that make you go hmmmm, you're better off with Mysteries of the Unexplained, which relies more on copy, is longer, and includes source notes.

Books mentioned in this review:


To say Noggle, one first must be able to say the "Nah."