Musings from Brian J. Noggle
Friday, October 17, 2008
Welcome To The 21st Century, Noggle
I received my first text on my cell phone today, a message from my uncle.

"From a 64 year old man," my wife said. "How does that make you feel?"

"Better than you'd feel if it was a 21 year old woman," I thought, but didn't say, mostly because I fear her displeasure.

Thursday, October 16, 2008
Sign of the End Times
You know, that bumper sticker I made insinuating that Obama was a communist is one thing; another thing entirely are the line of official Barack Obama signs and whatnot with the freaking Soviet star on them:

Obama, the Soviet Star

What, you're going to tell me that's supposed to imply the Red Star Yeast logo because Obama is going to raise us all or the Macy's logo because Obama wants to turn the government into the citizens' department store, where they can get anything they want as long as it's red.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Memo to All Democrats
Obama is leading in the polls, 150% to 28%. You know what? You don't even have to show up and vote.

Stay home on November 4th and watch the second season of Heroes on DVD.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Book Report: Myths, Lies, and Downright Stupidity by John Stossel (2005)
This book takes on a number of media-promulgated myths and explains why most of them are false. As a reasonable, libertarian sort of fellow myself, I already knew most of them. The last chapter of myths covers parenting, and it's the weakest one. Stossel is a consumer reporter, not necessarily a parenting reporter, so the book ends on a weak note.

Another book that goes along with what I believe, generally, so it didn't challenge me much. Explaining common sense to someone with some common sense ain't riveting reading. Sadly, like most political books, only people who agree with it will buy it/acquire it.

Speaking of which, since I just bought a hardback copy, I have a trade paperback to get rid of. Call it if you want it.

Books mentioned in this review:

Would They Call Regular Fraud "Fundraising Efforts"?
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch's Washington "editor" weighs in on ACORN's fraud problems by calling them something else: GOP attacking ACORN's voter registration efforts:
    Trailing badly in new-voter registration, Republicans are waging an aggressive campaign in Missouri and around the country against a group that claims to have added 1.3 million people to voter rolls since last year.
Let's play a new game: whenever the Post-Dispatch identifies something as fraud, let's see how they would spin it if it involved/indicted the Democratic Party.

Like this: GOP attacks Nevadan's fundraising efforts

Or this: Republicans assail investor efforts.

I guess I am just naive; I didn't think that Republicans were upset with voter registration efforts. I thought they were upset that ACORN people were systemically and nationally caught making things up out of whole cloth:

I guess that explains why I didn't go into journalism; I don't want to "help" people see the "truth" through my creative writing and pretending it was something other than a fictional narrative.

Monday, October 13, 2008
Book Report: A Friend Forever edited by Susan Polis Schutz (1980, 1982)
This is a simple collection of "poems" and quotes about friendship from famous people taken from magazines. Think of Reader's Digest's Quoted Quotables section, but with 70s pop art.

Again, it's good to read some bad poetry to remind you what good poetry is like. And some of this is not very good.

The strangest thing, though, is that the copy I have is from the third printing. And the book cost 4.95. In 1982. And I guess someone was buying them.

And, on the other hand, the editor and author of many of the poems within founded the company that published this book and created, which they sold to Excite for $780 million. So she's got that going for her. Me? I've published a couple of chapbooks and have a couple cool blogs.

Books mentioned in this review:

Book Report: Do As I Say (Not As I Do) by Peter Schweizer (2005)
So I picked this book up for a quick mad-on for those who would rule us (those in the other party, I mean). It takes on the likes of Michael Moore, Nancy Pelosi, Noam Chomsky, and so on and details how their personal lives don't match their public rhetoric. You know, I found most of these people odious to begin with, and I get enough of this sort of material from the blogs daily, so the book didn't do much for me. The best I can say is that now I'm conflicted about buying Ravenswood wines because Pelosi owns a stake in them.

I guess this book works best for readers who don't traverse the blog circuit regularly and instead buy books from advertisements in National Review or the conservative book club.

Books mentioned in this review:

Book Report: The Man With The Golden Gun by Ian Fleming (1965)
This is the second book I've read recently that was set soon after the Cuban revolution, and Fleming didn't think it would last (to the contrary, Brett Haliday thought it might be a good idea.) These things strike me.

This book deals with a post-brainwashing, post-trying-to-assassinate-M Bond unbrainwashed and assigned to kill a Caribbean hitter who used a goldern Colt .45 revolver and custom gold-loaded bullets. Bond goes down there, infilitrates, and gets his man.

I can't remember how the Roger Moore Bond film of the same name worked, but I would guess it differed greatly from the book. It's a pretty good read, an artifact of the times and of the medium (pseudo-pulp spy fiction, the good stuff before the epic, moral-grey-area stuff came on).

Books mentioned in this review:

Book Report: Elephants Can Remember by Agatha Christie (1972)
This book, like the other book I've read most recently from Agatha Christie (By The Pricking Of My Thumbs) comes from Agatha Christie's later works (remember, gentle reader, she started in 1920; this book is from 52 years later and is the penultimate book she wrote). Maybe I'm crazy, but I like the earlier works better, back before the main characters got old.

This book features Hercule Poirot and Mrs. Oliver trying to suss out the story behind a murder/suicide fifteen years earlier. A rarely-seen goddaughter of Mrs. Oliver is set to marry, but the groom's mother worries about the goddaughter's parents' deaths. The protagonists puzzle it out based on reminisces and rumors from people only tangentally involved with the story. As a matter of fact, a main part of the story turns on the goddaughter not knowing her own family or forgetting things that happened at age 14.

So it's not a very satisfying book in Mrs. Christie's canon, but reading the book, I'm reminded that she had her own book club as late as the 1980s; one could join the club and get a different Agatha Christie book every month for several years if one was inclined. Wow. I remember Stephen King had one, too, and he's the only author of our generation that I can recall having such. These days, nobody reads enough to rope them into something like that. And I notice the BOMC offers to send out two books automatically each month unless you send back the card. Just so they can soak the negligent double until they cancel, I guess.
Books mentioned in this review:

Memo to Missouri Democrats
If you voted for a dead man for Senate and knowingly sent a woman to the United States Congress based on her qualification that she was the governor's widow, you may now shut the hell up about a sitting governor being unqualified to be vice president.

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