Tag Archives: books

What books are you reading?

Men across the globe are praising the Fifty Shades of Grey series of books for the increase in their sex lives the books have provided as these sensual stories have been devoured by female readers.  If you are not familiar with the Fifty Shades of Grey books, well, apparently the two main characters have sex… ALL. THE. TIME! In any case, nothing like a little literary fantasy to get people revved up.

In the past, other series of books haven’t worked out so well…

Prior to the Fifty shades of Grey series, the Hunger Games books were topping the charts. Now granted, I read the first one and I thought it was a very good book. But in all honesty, horrible, desolute poverty and kids killing each other just doesn’t put people in the mood. I mean, the average guy could spend hours out in the woods collecting and preparing stuff for a romantic dinner of stale bread, roots dug out of the ground, nuts and berries, mice and squirrel meat and porridge, his hands dirty and bloody from digging in the soil and tearing meat from bone… only to have his wife crush all his dreams when she walks in the door with a pizza and six cartons of Chinese food. It would be enough to want to fire an arrow through her heart. Not very romantic.

Before the Hunger Games, most women were, of course reading the Twilight series of books and men were thinking, “this is it, a sexy vampire story, I am so in, I just need to spend a lot of time down in my basement so I can get that pale white skin!” Plus, the average, grunt-speaking man had to learn to talk in short, breathy sentences while staring off into space and saying things like “you are utterly indecent — no one should look so tempting, it’s not fair” and “yes, you are exactly my brand of heroin.”  Of course, if a guy was able to master those things, he had to attempt to move through rooms at light speed while shirtless and wearing tight pants.  This of course came with the high risk of knocking himself out while tripping over the unused exercise machine and flying head first into her nightstand.

Then, who can forget the Harry Potter years, when women wrapped their vivid imaginations around wizards and magic. It seemed like those years went on forever, but most men thought, “what could be sexier than a guy in a wizard costume with a pointy hat?” Sales of those little circular glasses went through the roof and men interacted with their wives by saying things like “woulducus likto havicus sexicus” and “engorgio erecto, can you takus carathis” while simultaneously opening up the black cloak that they were wearing as a bathrobe.  Apparently women didn’t find any of this arousing in the least.

So, now that the Fifty Shades of Grey books will slowly fade from the best seller list, men around the globe are concerned about what books will become the next craze. As most men don’t follow the best seller list and/or know what’s popular maybe you female readers can help us figure out what we can look forward to next!

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Christmas Shopping

I spent this morning doing some Christmas shopping. Unlike many people I actually enjoy shopping on the last few days before Christmas because everyone is in a good mood… well, except maybe some of the sales clerks. I believe it’s a myth that everybody is bitchy and pissed off and crotchety on the last few shopping days before Christmas. Most people are just off from work for a little while so they’re able to be finally feel happy about the upcoming holiday… or maybe they’re just drunk… whatever…

Here are a few observations:

I was in a bookstore for about an hour. I wasn’t looking for anything in particular. I just thought it would be fun to look around. Some of you know, until this past November I worked in a family business… a bookstore… for the last eighteen years. It was a college bookstore, so we sold textbooks, rather than general reading books, but a bookstore nonetheless. Books became business to me. We made good incomes selling books, but I started hating books. The last thing I wanted to do was look at a book. Plus, as a retail store, we were always busy this time of year and didn’t get much time off. But today, I stood in a bookstore and looked through books and had a grand old time. I held them in my hands and stared at the covers and browsed the pages inside and even bought a few things. It was a renewed love affair.

I was in a store that sold wine today.  When I brought my purchase up to the cashier’s desk, she asked to see my ID.  I’m pretty sure that she didn’t think I was under twenty-one, this was just a store policy that they ask everyone to show an ID so they can enter their birth year into the cash register. I pulled out my wallet and flashed my driver’s license.  As I was closing my wallet back up, I noticed sticking out from behind my license was the appointment card for my upcoming, long overdue vasectomy surgery.  In big green letters on the top of the card, clearly visible to the cashier was the word UROLOGY.  Probably not too many guys under twenty-one spending time at the urologist’s office.

I’m a pretty friendly, people-person kind of guy… but have you ever seen someone who you don’t know, a complete stranger, and think “God, I hate that person.” I saw a woman today who was all scrunched up and angry-looking and that thought ran through my head… then I said to myself “thank God, I don’t have to spend the holidays with that woman.” Then I felt bad… because that scrunched up, angry woman is probably somebody’s wife, mother, sister, aunt… whatever. Oh well, hopefully she has a Merry Christmas and isn’t so fucking scrunched up when she’s with her family.

Hip stores play great Christmas music that really gets me in the holiday mood. Not that crap Christmas music you hear on the radio where they play “Grandma got run over by a reindeer” six hundred times a day, but funky, jazzy, cool Christmas tunes that you haven’t necessarily heard before. I like Christmas music like that… it’s fun and it makes me happy. By the way… whoever the hell wrote and sang “Grandma got runover…” should be locked up for torturing us all these years with that shitty, douche-bag song.

When you shop where I live, everybody says “Merry Christmas” to you. “What’s wrong with that” you ask? Well, nothing really… except… although I’ve lived in Michigan now for the past 18 years, I grew up on Long Island, New York where there is a large Jewish population. So you didn’t say Merry Christmas to everyone because there was a good possibility that they were not Christian and didn’t celebrate Christmas. Apparently I am still under the influence of that upbringing and I tend not to say Merry Christmas to people unless they say it first.

Even then I say it with a sense of… “I know you just said Merry Christmas to me… so I feel somewhat confident that I can say it back to you… perhaps… so… Merry Christmas to you too… ummmm… I think… you know… unless you happen to be Jewish… or Muslim… or Hindu… or Atheist… and you were just saying it to me because you figured I live in Michigan so the odds are pretty good that I celebrate Christmas… you know… so have a nice holiday, whatever you happen to be celebrating.”

Lastly on the subject of Christmas… man the freakin’ Christmas cards are pouring in. We get a shit-load of Christmas cards this time of year. I never get Christmas cards in February or May… or even September… but they roll in by the dozens this time of year. We are not good at reciprocating and sending out Christmas cards to all of our friends and family. If it were solely my responsibility… frankly it would never happen. My wife pulls it together some years and sends out “New Year’s” cards sometime in January.

I’ve always wondered why people send Christmas cards with only pictures of their kids on the card. Are you and your spouse that hideous that you can’t be on the card as well? If you’re my friend, I want to see a picture of you on the Christmas card, especially if I haven’t seen you in a while… you know… so I can see if you’ve gotten fat and bald. Then I can feel better about myself and everybody needs a little bit of that, especially around the holidays.

I’d love to see a Christmas card with me on it… you know… perhaps in a red Speedo with a Santa Clause hat on.  Hey, if that just made you throw up in your mouth a little… well, I hope you get coal in your stocking!

Merry Christmas… ummmm… I think… you know… whatever… just have a nice holiday, whatever you happen to be celebrating.

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Goats That Eat Their Own Legs

I try not to dwell on the search terms that bring people to my blog.  Apparently some of the words and phrases I have used sporadically throughout my posts have a tendency to attract some sordid characters of less than stellar moral virtue.  I won’t go into details as I don’t want you to throw up in your mouth.

Yesterday, however, while checking my stats page (have I ever mentioned that I like to check my stats page?) I glanced down to the search terms and discovered this:

borders.com goat that ate its own legs book

WHAT?!?!?!

Have I ever mentioned that I have goats?

Well, I do… I have two of them… and so far neither one has eaten its own legs.  Just as importantly, neither has attempted to eat the other goats legs. I will tell you they do eat all kinds of other stuff, including plastic and paper… but so far no body parts.  Is that even a possibility that my goats could eat their own legs?  Rubbish… I’ve never heard of such a thing!

I really like my goats and have become quite attached to them.  Well, not literally attached, but you know what I mean. They’re like dogs with horns, except only one of them still has his horns. I’ll tell you, we get along smashingly well!  Except for the time I was bending over to pick something up and one of them head butted me so hard that I thought I was going to pass out… but I’m over that now.  Now we get along fabulously! Except for that time that one of them was licking my arm and then bit me, but I don’t hold grudges. Oh, and there was that time just recently that we were putting up fence to protect our garden… you know, from the goats… and one of them kept rubbing on the fence and knocking it over… but we’ve worked that out.  Of course, there was that time that one of them chewed the wires on my lawnmower… and on our bikes.  But, hey, these things happen and we’ve kissed and made up.  Well, not literally kissed, but you know what I mean.

Anyhow, as I said, we get along well.  We hang out in the yard.  We take walks together.  I even let one of them take a sip from my wine glass the other night.  He really liked it and so then I understood why we get along so well.  It’s a special relationship, that between man and goat.  Hey, get your mind out of the damn gutter…

Anyhow, I was perplexed that our goats had not come with any kind of warning that there was the possibility of them eating their own legs.  I was deeply concerned because a goat with no legs would not be nearly as fun to be around as one with legs.  I’d have to put them on a leash and then drag them down the road, and who needs that? So I googled this search expression and found that there is actually a book titled My Goat Ate Its Own Legs: Tales for Adults.  Well thank goodness it’s for adults! It certainly doesn’t sound like an appropriate topic for a children’s book.

I don’t know what the book is about but it is fictional so that gave me a sliver of relief.  Although I am immensely curious, I think I will choose NOT to read it, however.  I don’t want my relationship with my goats to become tainted.

In case you'd like to read it. Just don't tell me what it's about!

 

 

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The ABC’s of Publishing a Children’s Book

A is for Agents who I’m sending my query.
B is for Books which may soon disappeary.
C is for Children’s, a cut-throat division.
D is for waiting to hear their Decision.
E is for E-mailing queries like mad.
F is for Failing to proofread, so sad!
G is for Great, all the stories I’ve written.
H is for Hoping the agent is smitten.
I is for Indigestion I get from declines.
J is for Juggling submission guidelines.
K is for Keeping my eyes on success.
L is for Losing my mind from the stress.
M is for Money I hope they will pay.
N is for No which I hear everyday.
O is for Overworked, its taking its toll.
P is for Published, the ultimate goal.
Q is for Quitting and giving up writing
R is for Rhyming books, always exciting
S is for Seuss, everybody would read him.
T is for Tired of trying to beat him.
U is for Unpublished and feeling out of balance.
V is for Vastly overestimating my talents.
W is for Writing with all my finesse.
X is for eXpecting to always impress.
Y is for Yes, when someone finally replies.
Z is for ZZZZZZZZZZZZ I can rest my tired eyes!

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