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Roadside Geology of Colorado (Roadside Geology Series) by Halka Chronic

BASEBALL: OUR GAME (Penguin 60s) by John Thorn

Pavane (Del Rey Impact) by Keith Roberts

If They Come in the Morning by Angela Y. Davis

Tech-Heaven by Linda Nagata

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Member: AsYouKnow_Bob

CollectionsYour library (17,371), former books now disposed of (161), DVDs (1), Ace Doubles (275), To read (1), eBooks (1), Read but unowned (36), Wishlist (8), Currently reading (3), Uniform Gifts to Minors (46), Enthusiasm from childhood (172), book on cassette (4), Audiobooks (69), All collections (17,784)

Reviews189 reviews

Tagssf (8,652), science fiction (6,552), new (2,153), history (1,908), fantasy (1,753), DAW (1,741), SCPL (1,407), anthology (1,321), ex-library (1,248), fiction (1,192) — see all tags

Cloudstag cloud, author cloud, tag mirror

Recommendations7 recommendations

About me"A little library, growing larger every year, is an honourable part of a man's history. It is a man's duty to have books. A library is not a luxury, but one of the necessaries of life." - Henry Ward Beecher

"Book collecting is a full-time occupation, and one wouldn't get far if one took time off for frivolities like reading" - A.N.L. Munby

Which, these days, seems to be more than a little true: for the past few months, I seem to have been spending more time cataloging my books and reading the book groups on LT - and now book-swapping - than I have spent actually reading.

- - - - - - - - -

"As you know, Bob..." is one of the traditional ways to refer to the typical clunky exposition found in bad science fiction, when characters turn to each other to patiently explain the obvious. (SEE, for example: Jed Hartman's How I explained infodumps and saved humanity)

(See also: Mark Rosenfelder's If all stories were written like science fiction stories)

I use the name occasionally as a nom de internet, so I might as well use it here on LT, as I've certainly read more than my share of clunky exposition.

I'm a minor civil servant. My partner in this book madness is my wife [MaggieO] (who has a major library of her own); and we have three kids. Our house is now officially Full of books.

(People who visit us are at first staggered by the number of books. Then they usually manage to remark politely, "Welll...errm...I guess you can't HAVE too many books." Uh, no, sorry: we are living proof that you CAN in fact have too many books....)

I have a B.S. in Communication Theory, a reasonably numerate branch of the social sciences. (I washed out of Physics because I'm only reasonably numerate.) While beating my head against upper-division physics courses, I somehow picked up three minors - in Philosophy, in History, and in something called "The Human Dimensions of Science and Technology."

Our friends also tend to be fairly high-powered nerds; between myself, my wife, and our friends, we're interested in a wide swath of human activities, from flint-knapping and (fiber) spinning to nanotechnology and astronomy. You can of course get the gist of our interests from our tags.

E.g.: see the above photo of the 2004 ^h^h^h^h 2012 transit of Venus: I made it myself, with some not-so-simple tools found around the house. Note that the photo is of an earth-sized planet half-way between us and our star: our entire planet set against the sun would be about half the size of that black dot. The photo serves as a reminder to keep things in perspective.)

(I'm not a comic book guy....)

"Everything is the way it is because it got that way."
- D'Arcy Wentworth Thompson, On Growth and Form

"Everything is related to everything else, but near things are more related than distant things."
- Waldo Tobler's (Prof. of Geography & Prof. of Statistics at the UC, Santa Barbara) First Law of Geography (in Economic Geography 46: 234-40, 1970)

(Which is another version of Dirk Gently's observation:)

Holistic Investigations are based upon: Quantum mechanics suggests a 'Unification Theory' that says everything is inter-connected, and by following any causal thread, however tangential or apparently unconnected it may appear, you will ultimately and inevitably arrive at the solution.

- - Douglas Adams, Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency

About my libraryNo, I have NOT read everything here. (I've read more of it than you might think, though.) I custom-built a couple hundred feet of bookshelves for our family room. Yes, we have now officially run out of shelves (we've been forced to resort to the barbarity of double-shelving (*Gasp!* The horror!), and - until the kids leave the nest - we've just about run out of wallspace to put bookshelves. Consequently, some of the older/rattier/less-referred-to stuff has Gone to Storage.)

We are gradually coming around to the strategy of building a library put forth by Samuel Pepys: "For every book that comes into the house, a book will have to leave the house."

{Diaries February 4, 1668: I all day at home, and all morning setting my books in order in my presses for the fallowing year, their number being much increased since the last, so I am fain to lay by several books to make room for better, being resolved to keep no more then just my presses will contain.}

Right now, I'm using LT as a catalog of my BOOKS. I know that a "library" can include more than just books, but that's not how I think of LT.

For about a year, I seemed to have had the largest library of books on LT. This of course was temporary - in the real world, I know a guy who has about 40,000 books, and I'm sure there are plenty more out there.

I have a huge collection of SF, but my non-SF collection is a respectable library all by itself. If we're keeping count, I also have several thousand CDs, several thousand LPs, and probably 4,000? science fiction magazines. I have not yet included these in my LT catalog, although if I ever get some sort of hand-held LT-reader, that may change. (How is "porting LT to the iPod" going?)

Some highlights of my SF collection: I have all of the "Ace Science Fiction Specials" (all three series); (Somewhat surprisingly, this seems to be the only complete set on LT, even after two years here.) I think I have all of the Ace (and Tor...) SF "Doubles"; I think that I have every book ever nominated for the Philip K. Dick Award; I have most of the DAW Books (all of them through #1,000). I have every "Year's Best SF" collection that I've been able to find (well over two hundred of them...).

It's said that "the Golden Age of science fiction is 'twelve'". Which is certainly correct in my case - I had been reading the stuff as soon as I could read, but discovering the Wollheim/Carr World's Best Science Fiction anthology when I was, yes, twelve, made my head explode. I've been hooked ever since.

So I seem to be strongest on the SF of the late '60s and then the 1970s - all the stuff that I read as a kid. (E.g.: I bought DAW #1 as a teenager, when I first spotted it in my local store.) As the field has grown, I've made relatively less effort to keep up.

There are some notable gaps for a major SF collection: no Rowling - those are the kids'. No Gaiman or Pratchett or Doug Adams, either - those are either my wife's, or the kids'. The magical-realists are under-represented, simply because they aren't to my taste. "Fantasy" is over-represented (for my taste), largely because for a couple of decades I was a DAW completist. (I'm better now.)

Some thoughts on taxonomy:
For a decade or so, I've kept a catalog of my SF (after a few thousand volumes, I could no longer remember just what I owned, and increasingly found myself accidently buying duplicates). "Tagging" my books has forced me to sit down and think through the taxonomy. My "SF" tag includes not only "speculative fiction", but all sorts of associational stuff: lit crit, biographies and memoirs of sf writers, poetry by Leonard Nimoy, horror by Ambrose Bierce, mainstream novels by PKD, writing guides, etc. So under my 'SF' tag, I place several major subdivisions: I have a couple hundred titles that are "non-fiction about the SF field" ("sf nf"); and the fiction proper is now somewhat arbitrarily divided into "science fiction" and "fantasy". Poul Anderson's Tau Zero is clearly "science fiction", Tolkien's The Hobbit is clearly "fantasy"; but in between, the border between SF and F is of course a question of taste. (Are the "Darkover" books SF or F?). So, each of my 6,000-odd {oops, now 7,000-odd} "SF" books now gets (at minimum) two tags.
I'm going back through to tag some information that applies only to the book-in-my-collection (and not to the work) - where and when I bought it, where I keep it, etc. Sorry if this personal info distracts from the 'tag cloud' for any particular book.

(One reason I immediately joined LT is because Tim used the word "folksonomies" in a sentence. Clearly, I belong here.)

My library is large enough that there really ARE books that I've forgotten I own. One of the pleasures of signing up for LT has been reacquainting myself with books on my shelves that I have not opened in decades.

I find the social aspect of LT to be endlessly fascinating - book lovers are certainly an interesting bunch of people.

One of my kids recently insisted that we had to go to {major chain bookstore} - because there was nothing to read in the house.

Groups18th-19th Century Britain, 20th Century British Realism, Ace Doubles, Adirondacks and beyond, Albany NY Area Science Fiction Fans, American Politics, American Revolution & Founding Fathers History, Anarchism, Ancient & Mystic Society of No Homers, Annus mirabilisshow all groups

Favorite authorsAbdul Alhazred, Kingsley Amis, Poul Anderson, Beowulf poet, Assorted Authors, Ann Beattie, Elizabeth Bowen, Buddha, Noam Chomsky, Avram Davidson, Richard Dawkins, Samuel R. Delany, Peter De Vries, Barbara Ehrenreich, Loren C. Eiseley, Brian Eno, John M. Ford, Alice Fulton, Gang of Four, God, God, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Stephen Jay Gould, Michael Harrington, George Herriman, Christopher Hill, Nick Hornby, Joy Division, R. A. Lafferty, Ken MacLeod, John McPhee, Eric Newby, George Orwell, Samuel Pepys, Barbara Pym, Keith Roberts, Sonny Rollins, Bertrand Russell, Marquis de Sade, Satan ., Robert Sheckley, Cordwainer Smith, Sonic Youth, Neal Stephenson, Max Stirner, Charles Stross, Theodore Sturgeon, The Jam, The Smiths, Hunter S. Thompson, Various, Gore Vidal, John Wain, Howard Waldrop, Gerrard Winstanley, P. G. Wodehouse (Shared favorites)

VenuesFavorites | Visited

Favorite bookstoresAmherst Books, Bakka Phoenix Books, Bakka-Phoenix Science Fiction & Fantasy Bookstore, Blackwell's Oxford, Bookmarks: The Socialist Bookshop, Chapters - World's Biggest Book Store, Fantasy Centre, Forbidden Planet - London, Hay Cinema Bookshop, Librarium, Moe's Books, North Country Books, Raven Used Book Shop, Strand Bookstore, The Cranbury Bookworm, Troubadour Books

Favorite librariesAlbany Public Library - Main Branch, Berkshire Athenaeum, Bodleian Library, Library of Alexandria, Library of Congress, Miskatonic University Library, New York State Library

Favorite listsBest Science Fiction Novels, Counterculture History, Favorite First Contact Stories, Feminist Science Fiction, Gateway Book: Science Fiction, Geology - Fossils/Palentology, German Literature, Literary Tour of New York State, South End Press Favorites


Also onFlickr, LiveJournal, MetaFilter, Slashdot

Membership LibraryThing Early Reviewers/Member Giveaway

Real nameBob. (LT user #54046)


Account typepublic, lifetime

URLs /profile/AsYouKnow_Bob (profile)
/catalog/AsYouKnow_Bob (library)

Member sinceJul 2, 2006

Currently readingThe Grammar of Science, Part I: Physical, Third Edition, Revised and Enlarged by Karl Pearson
Truth and Truthfulness : an Essay in Genealogy by Bernard Arthur Owen Williams
Neutral Milk Hotel's In the Aeroplane Over the Sea (33 1/3) by Kim Cooper

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Quote of the day:

He might have gotten the last laugh when he surmised that secession was a “Lost Cause” prior to the war, remarking that “South Carolina is too small to be a republic, and too large to be an insane asylum.”

- James L. Petigru (1789-1863)
"I am not able rightly to apprehend the kind of confusion
of ideas that could provoke such a question." - Babbage
Matthew 5
34 But I say to you, make no oath at all, either by heaven, for it is the throne of God, 35 or by the earth, for it is the footstool of His feet, or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the great King. 36 Nor shall you make an oath by your head, for you cannot make one hair white or black. 37 But let your statement be, ‘Yes, yes’ or ‘No, no’; anything beyond these is of evil."
"My eyes fell lazily from the paper and out the window..." - the greatest writer since Fitzgerald and Keats

( Patricia Wittberg, a nun and sociologist at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis...)

>Millennial Catholics are the first generation in American history for which women are less likely than their male peers to attend Mass. “I cannot tell you how ominous this is,” Wittberg said, “because if you lose the women, you lose the children.”
“If the Holy Bible was printed as an Ace Double it would be cut down to two 20,000-word halves, with the
Old Testament retitled as ‘Master of Chaos’, and the New Testament as ‘The Thing With Three Souls'.”
― Terry Carr
I Appreciate The Muppets On A Much Deeper Level Than You:
A Considered Reply To a Child
by Jonathan Price

"I love you," you said between two mouthfuls of pudding.
But not funny; I didn't want to laugh at all.
Rolling three years' experience in a ball,
You nudged it friendlily across the table.

A stranger, almost, I was flattered--no kidding.
It's not every day I hear a thing like that;
And when I do my answer's never pat.
I'm about nine times your age, ten times less able

To say--what you said; incapable of unloading
Plonk at someone's feet, like a box of bricks,
A declaration. When I try, it sticks
Like fish-bones in my throat; my eyes tingle.

What's called "passion", you'll learn, may become "overriding".
But not in me it doesn't: I'm that smart,
I can give everything and keep my heart.
Kisses are kisses. No need for souls to mingle.

Bed's bed, what's more, and you'd say it's meant for sleeping;
And, believe me, you'd be absolutely right.
With luck you'll never lie awake all night,
Someone beside you (rather like "crying") weeping.
Very cute, Bob. Needs an equation, maybe?
Ha! This conversation is making me wish I were an atheist!
Arthur C. Clarke, by now a well established science fiction writer as well as the author of the pioneering paper on satellite communications, had been growing increasingly irritated by the theological science fiction of C.S. Lewis, who saw space travel as a sinful attempt by fallen humanity to overstep its god-given place. [...] Clarke contacted Lewis and they agreed to meet in the Eastgate Tavern, Oxford. Clarke brought Val Cleaver as his second, Lewis brought J.R.R. Tolkien. They saw the world so differently that even argument was scarcely possible. As Orwell said about something completely different, their beliefs were as impossible to compare as a sausage and a rose. Clarke and Cleaver could not see any darkness in technology, while Lewis and Tolkien could not see the way in which a new tool genuinely transforms the possibilities of human awareness. For them, machines at the very best were a purely instrumental source of pipe tobacco and transport to the Bodleian.So what could they do? They all got pissed. “I’m sure you are all very wicked people,” said Lewis cheerfully as he staggered away, “But how dull it would be if everyone was good!”

Francis Spufford’s Backroom Boys: The Secret Return of the British Boffin

Published at 12:00AM, October 4 2004
Sir, The case for arranged marriages (T2 and leading article, September 29) would be supported by Dr Johnson. Boswell reports him as saying:
I believe marriages would in general be as happy, and often more so, if they were all made by the Lord Chancellor, upon a due consideration of characters and circumstances, without the parties having any choice in the matter.
(Boswell, Life of Johnson, volume II, page 461).
Yours faithfully,


47 Tiddington Road,
Warwickshire CV37 7AF.
September 29.
“Can you measure it? Can you express it in figures? Can you make a model of it?
If not, your theory is apt to be based more upon imagination than upon knowledge.”

- Lord Kelvin (William Thomson)
I seem to have fallen behind on my A4:

Four Centuries of Chant (2009)
Secret Voices: Chant & Polyphony from the Las Huelgas Codex (2011)
Marie et Marion (2014)

and another coming out next year...
Quote of the day:

“One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we’ve been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We’re no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozled has captured us. It’s simply too painful to acknowledge, even to ourselves, that we’ve been taken. Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back.”
- Carl Sagan
Heyyy! Now that would be a flight to remember, I'm sure. If for all of five minutes we'd have to live. :)

Been thinking of you these couple days, as I made somewhat of a largeish sci-fi haul (with some nebulous idea of putting together a classics set for niece & nephew) and, of course, EVERY title I check you have.

I won't be adding many to mine own, but some... in near future...

You didn't miss the announcement -- I never managed to make one on LT! (One of those things that slipped through the haze of the first few weeks of parenthood; and now it seems rather too late; plus, we've been trying to keep the boy's exposure on social media to a minimum -- we have friends who post daily videos and streams of photos of their children on Facebook, and we worry about what long-term consequences that kind of over-sharing might have.)

Thanks for the wishes!

To live effectively is to live with adequate information.

-- Norbert Wiener (1950) The Human Use of Human Beings: Cybernetics and Society revised (1954)
Thanks, Bob. I can really identify with that one, especially the 3.30 am alarm on cold dark mornings! Our locos are coal-fired, not oil, but the principle is the same.

"When the ancients first applied themselves to searching out the nature of things and the essentials of morality, they necessarily erred frequently, for they lacked discrimination in use of words and concepts. This is frequently the case with Epicurus, who thinks that the universe consists of atoms, and that pleasure is a virtue."

- Hugh of St. Victor, The Didascalion

"Colleges across the country this spring have been wrestling with student requests for what are known as “trigger warnings,” explicit alerts that the material they are about to read or see in a classroom might upset them..."
Birth: 1655, Netherlands
Death: 1712
Albany County
New York, USA

Anna Maria Hans Barheit was born in 1655 in the Netherlands, a daughter of Johannes Barheit and his wife, whose name is not known; she married Jan Wybesse Spoor in 1675 in Holland; she died in 1712 in Albany, Albany County, New York; her burial place is not known.

Children of Jan Wybesse and Anna Maria Hans (Barheit) Spoor are:

1- Gerritt Wibusse Spoor
2- Johannes John Spoor
3- Isaac Spoor
4- Antje Jans Spoor, she was killed and burnt at Schenectady by the French and Indians Feb. 9,1690
5- Saartje (Sara) Spoor
6- Nicolaas, April 27, 1690
7- Barrentje Spoor
8- Annetje Spoor
9- Rebecca Spoor
10- Rachel Spoor
parking this "blast from the past" here for now

" thing the "Secret Shakespeare" idiots ignore is how time-consuming both life AND art are.

That is, in order to write a play, you need to clear your desk of whatever else you're working on. And you can't really do that if you are Lord High Chancellor of the Kingdom. Or even a run-of-the-mill courtier. Playwriting is work, it takes time.

Shakespeare is thought to have produced about 40 plays (AND some serious poetry) in about 20 years of activity. Roughly, two plays a year.

Marlowe - often busy with some other business, but he turned out about 6 plays in about 6 years: 1/yr.
Fletcher - 16 sole-author plays, and another 16? collaborations in 20? years or so. Say, 1.3 - 1.5/yr.
Jonson - 20 plays and 36 masques in 40 years or so. Figure 2masques = 1 play?, that's roughly 1/yr.
Kyd wrote 6? plays in 10? years (but that includes some jail time). Roughly 1/yr.
Middleton wrote 30-some plays, 14 masques and some poetry in 25 years or so. Say, 1.5/yr.
I'm not going to run through the whole list of Elizabethan dramatists, but it looks like 1-2/yr is all that a full-time playwright can do.

So, looking at your Elizabethan playwrights, "a play a year" is a solid career for a full time playwright; and two plays a year seems to be about the limit for a full time playwright, somebody who has found a racket that will put food on his table, and who is willing to make it a full-time career. And note that Shakespeare's output is toward the high end of the range.

Done as an idle hobby, then: how fast would somebody churn these plays out?

The loonies propose that somebody could write work of Shakespeare's caliber at twice Ben Jonson's pace. AND in secret. AND in their spare time. AND while they maintained a full-time cover career.

I get the sense that most of the "Goethe wrote Shakespeare" loonies have never actually worked a day in their lives. Because "work" is not just time-consuming, it's exhausting. (That, after all, is why it's called "work".)

Bacon was Lord Fucking Chancellor of England, and wrote what, 50 books on every topic under the sun?
And the loonies propose that - in his ample spare time - he was supposed to be secretly out-writing a professional full-time hack like Ben Jonson? Sorry, that's just physically impossible.

Try it. Try running a lord's estate, or sit in Parliament, or run an entire kingdom, and then come home and churn out a huge corpus of some deathless literature. Where would somebody find the time to out-produce a professional writer when one is writing solely as a hobby? In Bacon's case, it would be like being White House Chief of Staff AND simultaneously (secretly) writing the Steven King corpus. Crazy talk.

One or two plays, maybe even the sonnet sequence, yeah, that's entirely possible. How or why someone would do that is not clear, but that's physically and intellectually possible. Nobody seems to be much claiming that, though.

But given the pace of Shakespeare's output - at the high end for a full-time Elizabethan playwright - it would actually make more sense for "William Shakespeare" to have been a house name for the Globe Theatre, and the plays could conceivably been written by a staff committee of whoever had time to contribute to one: but that idea doesn't explain the flashes of genius. (cf. the output of the Stratemeyer Syndicate.) And nobody seems to be proposing that.

Shakespeare wrote Shakespeare. Nobody else had the time, or the talent.
Spurious correlations:
Weinberger in Salon:

So here’s a missed opportunity for scientists to have said, look, of course there are nine objects circling the sun that we have a particular interest in, because we have tradition and mythology about it, and that’s great, we love them. But we should recognize, there are billions of things circling the sun, and they’re interesting in different ways, they have different properties. So in addition to these nine that really have nothing in common except that we like them (there are other objects that are basically the same size, and so on), let’s consider what’s circling the sun as a soup of things that have attributes. Let’s talk about some of the categories that are really interesting scientifically.
Quite an impressing library you have! I will do some expeditions into it now and then, especially to the SF and fantasy-section. I can't imagine how you can store this amount of books!

One of my favourite authors is Gregory Benford, a writer who has the science, also often a deep and poetic style, and believable caracters.

"Your" Swedish was quite ok!

BE the change you want to see ! :)

Life is short, the battle long.

Hip hip hurray, long live May Day!!!

I knew about Boltzmann (a lifelong depressive) but not Ehrenfest. Creepy stuff. Scienticians (TM) tend to be jolly, sturdy and everlasting, on the whole.

David L. Goodstein, the opening of [States of Matter]:

“Ludwig Boltzmann, who spent much of his life studying statistical mechanics, died in 1906, by his own hand. Paul Ehrenfest, carrying on the work, died similarly in 1933. Now it is our turn to study statistical mechanics.”
So, Apollo 8 reached lunar orbit; Apollo 10's LM "Snoopy" reached an orbit within 10 miles of the lunar surface - - but Apollo 11, 12, 14, 15,16,17 - none of them ever landed. Because it would be easier to fake six landings than to expend that last 5km/s of delta v.

Fiorello (Chico): we happened to come to America is a great story, but I no tell that.
When we first started out we gotta no idea you would give us this grand reception. We don't deserve it.
And when I say we don't deserve it, believe me I know what I'm talking about.

So now I tell you how we fly to America. The first time we started we got halfway across,
when we run out of gasoline, and we gotta go back. Then I take twice as much gasoline.
This time we were just about to land, maybe three feet...when whaddya think?

We run outta gasoline again, and back we go halfway over, when whaddya think happened?
We forgot the aeroplane. So we gotta siddown and we talk it over. Then I getta the great idea.
We no take gasoline, we no take the aeroplane....WE TAKE A STEAMSHIP!! And that my friends
is how we fly across the ocean.

Apollo 11 launch, from the launchpad:
Masons! OF COURSE!!!11!
Fun Facts:

I've had wine-and-cheese-and-small-talk with both George Low (former manager of the Apollo Spacecraft Program Office (ASPO) ) AND with David Bohm. (...not at the same reception, though....)
Comment on this image. Image comments only appear on your own profile page and the image page itself.
Yep. That's Dannie Richmond. Here's a page with stills (and a write-up) from a movie about him, possibly the same one that provided this image of Dolphy
My wife found LT & while exploring it, your nom de internet (?) Showed up & I (Ycanti) had to view your site!
One question,though.
In your listing of nerd/geek interests, are you now or have you ever participated in role playing games?
Or collectable card games (>cough
Yosemite Sam cursing:
spherical Slepian basis functions
Louis C.K. on privilege:
Christie's people punished the mayor of Fort Lee by making life difficult for the people of Fort Lee. That is: THEY view he welfare of the people of Fort Lee as a) important to the (Democratic) mayor and b) completely unimportant to the (Republican) governor.

Both are nominally sworn to serve the people.
I note that 6 other people have this book; 4 libraries way larger than mine, and two way smaller (
I see you visit darker and more recondite places than I do. Thank you so much for the book.

every thing's vibration is a different
degree of music
there is music everywhere
infinite infinity is the language of
enduring impression

...more prophetic than poetic, I think, but a welcome view of a side of Sun Ra I hadn't encountered before.
“Citizens of the democratic societies should undertake a course of intellectual self defense to protect themselves from manipulation and control, and to lay the basis for meaningful democracy.” -Chomsky
parking this here:

I get that Ender's Game was a formative book for a lot of people; but I'm so old that I was already an adult when the *novella* version came out. And at the time I thought it was a cynical pitch to the "Fans are slans" element of fandom. It didn't work for me, because I could see the blatant fanservice.

SF fandom is full of bright kids (and bright former-kids) - people who had a tough time with their peers in school, whether they were just misunderstood and underappreciated, or they were downright bullied.

So when you're a kid and you find a book that speaks to you because the 10-year-old protagonist is persecuted and unappreciated and yet wins through - - and in your own life, you feel your own specialness is inadequately recognized; and maybe you also - on some level - would be fine with avoiding adult responsibility - well, I can see how a book like that could speak to an audience.

Ender's Game caters to fans' desire for specialness and irresponsibility; remember that whatever ethical questions the book raises, Ender isn't responsible for what he does because his intentions were pure.

If you wanted to sit down to write a story that would win the (fan-awarded) Hugo, you'd couldn't do better than to use Ender's Game as your outline.
JDCarr slipstream: Devil in Velvet, Fire Burn, and Carter Dickson's Fear is the Same.
M has 1,2;
3 is pretty obscure.
(parking this here:)

$125 cross-slide table
list of Best SF Novels:
Never read any book that is not a year old.
- Emerson
“The purpose of a system is what it does.”
- Stafford Beer.
There is nothing in the world more shameful
than establishing one's self on lies and fables.
- Goethe
It doesn't surprise me that ThomasRichard and JaneAustenNut copy from the same source. It is more or less the only thing that most theist apologists on the internet are able to do. Jane also trotted out the tired Pascal's Wager gambit, which tells me that she's pretty much just doing a paint-by-numbers posting.
A man goes to a Psychologist and says, "Doc I got a real problem, I can't stop thinking about sex."

The Psychologist says, "Well let's see what we can find out", and pulls out his ink blots. "What is this a picture of?" he asks.

The man turns the picture upside down then turns it around and states, "That's a man and a woman on a bed making love."

The Psychologist says, "very interesting," and shows the next picture. "And what is this a picture of?"

The man looks and turns it in different directions and says, "That's a man and a woman on a bed making love."

The Psychologists tries again with the third ink blot, and asks the same question, "What is this a picture of?"

The patient again turns it in all directions and replies, "That's a man and a woman on a bed making love."

The Psychologist states, "Well, yes, you do seem to be obsessed with sex."

"Me!?" demands the patient. "You're the one who keeps showing me the dirty pictures!"
John Holbo quotes KD on the VR Act:

"Kevin Drum’s nickel summary works for me, comparing and contrasting the new decision, in Shelby County v. Holder with Crawford v. Marion County Election Board (PDF).
'So here’s your nickel summary. If a law is passed on a party-line vote, has no justification in the historical record, and is highly likely to harm black voting, that’s OK as long as the legislature in question can whomp up some kind of neutral-sounding justification. Judicial restraint is the order of the day. But if a law is passed by unanimous vote, is based on a power given to Congress with no strings attached, and is likely to protect black voting, that’s prohibited unless the Supreme Court can be persuaded that Congress’s approach is one they approve of. Judicial restraint is out the window. Welcome to the 21st century.'"
wow, from the same thread:

Gavolt said...
Wow is this Dreher article confused. The fact that gay rights are now generally advocated tells us that empathy is on the rise. Empathy, showing concern for others because you feel what they are feeling, is a pretty good approximation of christian morality. The turn from dogmatic christianity combined with the rise in empathy shows us precisely that the lessons of christianity are becoming "inwardly compelling", to use Dreher's own words.

Anytime i hear people lament about the decline of religious observance and its effect on morality i always wonder what a complete scoundrel this person must be, since anyone with in IQ above 70 has the requisite tools to discern what is good from what is bad and how to behave decently.

June 27, 2013 at 02:07 AM
Graydon nails it (again):

Graydon said in reply to Paul...
Fear makes you stupid.

Lots of people don't understand why they're about to be old and poor, despite working hard their whole life.

Lots of people haven't figured out that the entire point of advertising is to find, create, or make worse an insecurity, and so, too, any media paid for by advertising.

"The old order changeth yielding place to new And God fulfills himself in many ways Lest one good custom should corrupt the world." It's obvious to the meanest intelligence that our time is such a time. Everything important is going to change. If all your status is tied up in something you're sure is going to change, well, you're against change. You might start to insist false things are true in an effort to avoid change; once you do that, you're condemned, you can only get dumber until you stop.

Reply (to deLong) June 26, 2013 at 03:35 PM
The law of causality, I believe, like much that passes muster among philosophers,
is a relic of a bygone age, surviving, like the monarchy, only because it is erroneously
supposed to do no harm. - Russell, 1913, p. 1
“Although our intellect always longs for clarity and certainty,
our nature often finds uncertainty fascinating.” - Clausewitz
“The civilized man has a moral obligation to be skeptical. . . .
Any man who for one moment abandons or suspends the
questioning spirit has for that moment betrayed humanity.”
–Bergen Evens The Natural history of Nonsense
Any system that claims that no protection is the same as equal protection is really a system for protecting the privileged.

- Ignatiy Vishnevetsky
"My personal feeling is that citizens of the democratic societies should undertake a course of intellectual self-defense to protect themselves from manipulation and control, and to lay the basis for more meaningful democracy."

Noam Chomsky - Necessary Illusions
Scut Farkus and his toadie Grover Dill
Happy May Day!
Today, (edited) 2:33 pm:

This will be my last post to a Librarything political group (or the political groups that falsely are advertised as religious groups). I will have better things to do with my time henceforth.

May you all receive exactly what you deserve.

Swamped in all the other news yesterday:
on the death of Thatcher:

"If doing something right earns you adulation, then doing something wrong should earn you enmity."
"To understand God's thoughts, we must study statistics,
for these are the measure of His purpose."

- Florence Nightingale
{quoted in Rukeyser's Willard Gibbs, p. 258}
All endeavors are conducted well or ill precisely in so far as they conform to Correct Thought.

Study of Correct Thought eventually reveals the path of success.

- Gene Wolf's [Book of the New Sun]
Heh, guilty!

He thought he could control the impulses... But the Pulp-O-Mizer was too addictive!!!

And today's calendar message: Rrrrrepent, sinner!

Some days are better than others.
'Contrarian' Quote of the Week:

“Those who obstinately oppose the most widely-held opinions more often do so because of pride than lack of intelligence. They find the best places in the right set already taken, and they do not want back seats.”
-- La Rochefoucauld, Maxims, 1665
'wecon gets the basic facts wrong, and then goes off on a rant on how this is still MY fault:
Fun evening tonight. I'd seen your rating of Reinventing Bach, and had in my mind that I owned but had misplaced the book. Which was frustrating now that I'd decided to read it. My wife stellarwoman, not on LT nor a cataloguer, is far more musically literate than I am, so I mentioned this to her. She asked, and I told her where I'd heard of it.

Which led to questions like "Who is this AsYouKnow_Bob?" and does he have a lot of books on music? I said of course, he seems to have a lot of books on everything. So we spent the next half hour with me reading her your titles tagged "music". (We only got though half of them.)

It was a lot of fun. She got excited about a bunch of them. Suffice it to say that we are now expecting a large delivery from Amazon! It happens to include Reinventing Bach, which in fact I did not own after all.

Lest you get the wrong idea, we could have had as much fun with the biography tag, or physics. We have some nerd blood in our veins.

Thought you'd want to know :-)
WK Clifford (entire essay at

"It is wrong always, everywhere, and for anyone, to believe anything upon insufficient evidence."

Haldane: "No, but I would to save two brothers or eight cousins."
lawecon, lowering the tone:

It is amusing the prejudices that certain people have about corporate boards. I guess that they are the niggers and spicks of the present mind set of certain sorts. When one engages in such unscientific and counterfactual thinking about social matters one must have ones' demons to which to attribute all evil.

Radford Dragon Nimbus Omnibus #3 = #1428
PR Frost #1536:

Tanya Huff Blood Bank #1440:
I think we've talked about bands before but it's been quite a while but I see Gang of Four and Joy Division in your favorites--both great bands--wonder though if you have Gang of Four's Return the Gift which updates quite a lot of their early material and I think does it even better.
Got your back.
I'm not interested enough to calculate it myself - but a random blogger ( claims that Clinton's speech clocked in at a tenth-grade level.

Roz Kaveney

(For Neil Armstrong)

In her white silent place, the hangings dust,
grey pebbles stretching to the edge of black
so far away. The goddess feels a lack
somewhere elsewhere, an ache deep as her crust

and weeps dry tears. The gentleman is gone
the first who ever called. His feet were light
as he danced on her. Went into the night
quite soon, his calling and his mission done

yet still his marks remain. Footfalls and flag.
The others she forgets. He was the first
to slake her ages long and lonely thirst
for suitors. Now she feels the years drag

as they did not before he came to call.
Our grief compared to hers weighs naught at all.
I noticed you added Road to Reality. I once started an LT group on that book. Inactive now. I have never been able to get through it, hardly managed to get started in it.
Kylie's star turn as the Green Fairy in Moulin Rouge:
Next year Readercon GOHs: Maureen McHugh, Patricia McKillip. No memorial yet.

I saw 4 panels total and spent hours at work, caught in a delivery panic. Lois was there Sat afternoon and we wound up by the hotel pool with friends, while their kids splashed around.

Colonialism in SF panel was good - a book club about the Rieder book, which we have and I must now read. Shirley Jackson awards went overtime.
Francis Bacon (Lord Bacon 1560-1626), "New Atlantis" (1626, his last work, an imaginative account of a college of learning):

“We have also perspective-houses, 16 where we make demonstrations of all lights and radiations; and of all colours: and out of things uncoloured and transparent, we can represent unto you all several colours; not in rain-bows, (as it is in gems, and prisms,) but of themselves single. We represent also all multiplications 17 of light, which we carry to great distance, and make so sharp as to discern small points and lines. Also all colourations of light; all delusions and deceits of the sight, in figures, magnitudes, motions, colours: all demonstrations of shadows. We find also divers means, yet unknown to you, of producing of light originally 18 from divers bodies. We procure means of seeing objects afar off; as in the heaven and remote places; and represent things near as afar off; and things afar off as near; making feigned distances. We have also helps for the sight, far above spectacles and glasses in use. We have also glasses and means to see small and minute bodies perfectly and distinctly; as the shapes and colours of small flies and worms, grains and flaws in gems, which cannot otherwise be seen, observations in urine and blood not otherwise to be seen. We make artificial rainbows, halo’s, and circles about light. We represent also all manner of reflexions, refractions, and multiplications 19 of visual beams of objects. 70

“We have also precious stones of all kinds, many of them of great beauty, and to you unknown; crystals likewise; and glasses of divers kinds: and amongst them some of metals vitrificated, 20 and other materials besides those of which you make glass. Also a number of fossils, and imperfect minerals, which you have not. Likewise loadstones of prodigious virtue; and other rare stones, both natural and artificial. 71

“We have also sound-houses, where we practise and demonstrate all sounds, and their generation. We have harmonies which you have not, of quarter-sounds, and lesser slides 21 of sounds. Divers instruments of music likewise to you unknown, some sweeter than any you have, together with bells and rings that are dainty and sweet. We represent small sounds as great and deep; likewise great sounds extenuate 22 and sharp; we make divers tremblings and warblings of sounds, which in their original 23 are entire. We represent and imitate all articulate sounds and letters, and the voices and notes of beasts and birds. We have certain helps which set to the ear do further the hearing greatly. We have also divers strange and artificial echoes, reflecting the voice many times, and as it were tossing it: and some that give back the voice louder than it came, some shriller, and some deeper; yea, some rendering the voice differing in the letters or articulate sound from that they receive. We have also means to convey sounds in trunks and pipes, in strange lines and distances.
I'm going to try to make an appearance there this afternoon, if only for social reasons.I doubt I can get my mind in gear to enjoy the programming. - L
So far I've missed most of it, except for changing batteries in recorders and helping with setup. Might get to go tomorrow and Sunday, some.
Thank you, comrade, long-distance neighbour! And happy in advance the glorious Independent Barbecue Day! Regards to your charming household too!
Oh noes, oh woes! I can only hope that that huge lot won't be sold to builders... not much of a hope, alas. *sigh* If only I could move to... Argentina.
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5 June 2012, 6:10:57pm EDT
“I recommend again and again this noble problem to the curious astronomers, who, when I am dead, will have an opportunity of observing these things, that they would remember this my admonition, and diligently apply themselves to making observations on the transit of Venus, in which I earnestly wish them all manner of success.” - Edmund Halley, 1716
Quote of the Day:

"It now costs more to amuse a child than it once did to educate his father."

-- Vaughan Monroe
So, did you see it?! I understand clouds did open some places.
new Gallup:

contraception: 89% vs. 8%

Oh, thanks for that article. I'll have to have a look when I get back from various appointments. Best, L
Thanks for the invite and the quote. I may very well check it out. :)
There is no such thing as a house 'full of books'!
When the humans can't get in, then is the time for that proclamation!
What is this book vice? Acquisitive, possessive, uncontrollable?
It's so good!
Thanks for your message.

I`m all for Nelsonica, it brings some much-needed money into the North and helps promote one of the country`s great independent artists.

I liked your post of last month under Unwelcome Topics in the Prog/Lib group, though I had no idea what the rest of the discussion was about, other than in very general terms.

All the best,


Cordwainer and Lafferty brought me
Thank you so much for Zoo City, Lauren Beukes! I had though about picking it up but never got around to it.
Love your library, and your transit of Venus shot is a thing of beauty...
Regarding Wakefield`s greatest export, you might want to know that Mr Nelson is making 6 previously unavailable songs from 1980 available as free downloads as an Xmas present to fans.

I think there is a link from, but if not I can let you have the details.

They are quite different to either BBD or Red Noise, being mainly slow, with a noticeable Bowie influence here and there.

All the Best for Xmas and New Year,


Parking this here until I find the source:
Bob's Lane; Edward Thomas

Women he liked, did shovel-bearded Bob,
Old Farmer Hayward of the Heath, but he
Loved horses. He himself was like a cob
And leather-coloured. Also he loved a tree.

For the life in them he loved most living things,
But a tree chiefly. All along the lane
He planted elms where now the stormcock sings
That travellers hear from the slow-climbing train.

Till then the track had never had a name
For all its thicket and the nightingales
That should have earned it. No one was to blame
To name a thing beloved man sometimes fails.

Many years since, Bob Hayward died, and now
None passes there because the mist and the rain
Out of the elms have turned the lane to slough
And gloom, the name alone survives, Bob's Lane.

posted to LT by zenomax, here:
As I endlessly remind my children: "Your parents were pretty hip, right up until we decided to take a couple decades off TO CATER TO YOUR EVERY NEED."


Hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving.


I don`t really do Librarything these days, but thought you might be interested in something.

I celebrated my 50th birthday recently, and who was one of the cards from ? Bill Nelson of all people ! I`ve never so much has met him, but knowing of my fondness for BeBop Deluxe etc, and knowing of Bill`s reputation for approachability (is that a real word ?), my wife contacted him to arrange it as a surprise.

He`s even done a little drawing of himself to decorate it, which is pretty cool.

Knowing you`re a fan yourself I thought you might be interested.



P.S. You can tell Maggie that my son Adam still has the books she sent and is still hopelessly addicted to them at the age of 4. He has a little sister now, which he thinks is terribly exciting.

Thanks, Bob, it was my pleasure. The discussion has certainly exceeded my expectations. I can't think of any site (well, maybe one or two) where the comments are more consistently worth reading than at LT.
Oh good (that you got the book). I am especially looking forward to your professional opinion about the author's statistical sleights of hand.
Bob old chap, please remember to let me know what you thought about the violence book (when, if...) I can't stomach the Great Suspender in that thread.
The reason why why fundies(and I am inferring that you mean fundamentalist Christians here) "don't bat an eye at modern physics, but draw their line in the sand over modern biology is because physics"--even if you accept the hypothesis that the universe does not exist--do not alter the nature of God, or the individual fundie's relationship to him. I think you'll find that most fundamentalists are more than willing to concede that reality is nothing more than a fantasy within the mind of God. So, if you drop to the level of quantum mechanics (which, as I recall, is not really cohesive enough to refute the somewhat compelling evidence for my personal existence) and produce copious proofs of the universe's non-existence, at most, you'll get a sound "Told you so."

On the other hand, Biology potentially changes both the nature of God and the individual's relationship to him. You must see that a deity who creates the world in seven days is inherently different than the deity who creates a millennia long stream-of-consciousness-type evolutionary journey. The created individual's role changes from the purposeful creation of a mindful God to the result of a cosmic science project. Furthermore--and perhaps more terrifying--Biology introduces the possibility that the Fundie is not, himself, the intended result, but rather a phase in the production of whatever it is that God really wanted.
Your Welcome. Usually I try to not let statements in threads like that bother me but I could not resist responding.
Huh! They renamed my phenomenon, da noive uh dem!

I'm pretty sure I named it way before 1986.

Ah, but I didn't publish. My bad.

So if I mention the B-M phenomenon, people will know what I'm talking about? Amazing. But how is it that I've never heard of it under that name till now? Don't get out enough?

I buy the selective attention theory. I must have passed "Gallatin Hall" at NYU a zillion times, but not knowing the name, it just slid off my consciousness. But once I had been clued in to Gallatin, next time I passed Gallatin Hall, lets say, a light goes off "OH, I know that name. So THATs who the silly building is named after. Who knew?"

Yes, its an interesting phenomenon. I call it the "Gallatin phenomenon because once upon a time I never heard of him (G. I mean) , then I discovered him and suddenly, there he was, everywhere you look.

Same with Sapolsky.

I ran across him only by accident through a Stanford on line course that had bits of it posted on you tube. My internet speed at Waterfall Lane (I'm at WFL usually from around Memorial day to sometime just before Halloween) isn't really up to watching a whole lot of video on line, but I did watch a few of the you tube segments. Then I sprang for one of his books Monkeyluv. On the strength of that, I'll eventually get some of his others.

I get the actual dead tree version of the New York Times, so yes, I did see that bit about the rat parasite and the guy from Sapolsy's lab.

That might be relevant in the "Free will" thread.

Anyway, good to hear from you. I sometimes think I'm hitting my head against a stone wall with the religious types. Good to think I'm not totally out there all by myself.

Oddly, new friend 'eggbeater' never revisited. Curious, that.

He never explained what he meant by his comment, either....
PS - I just saw your apology for getting my sex wrong - no problem, I couldn't care less if nice people do it but it does make a handy stick to thrash the nasty ones with ;-)
Should I? What's going on?
Thanks Bob. Looks interesting !! Are you a science fiction fan? I only see Stephenson among your favorites. Any others you like?
...aaaaand, thank you! Apparently Mr. Simcoe's day is being questioned--at least, whether it should continue to be associated with him, I quote (sort of): "so he was anti-slavery, but didn't exactly believe in the upward mobility for the lower classes, did he!"

The public, it gets tougher all the time. But I am happy with any excuse for a holiday.
Quote of the Day:
This, too is probable, according to that saying of Agathon: 'It is a part of probability that many improbable things will happen'. - Aristotle Poetics

(via E. Bear's LJ)
Vive la Révolution!

Ever, L.
The PDF program guide is now at the
Re Readercon: once again, Howard Waldrop is reading at 10 pm Saturday, after Kirk Poland. FYI.
Thanks, Bob. I'm in Juba, looking forward to Independence Day on Saturday. We're welcoming our guests, running around to get all the permits and vehicle stickers that we need for access to the official celebrations, fielding queries from the media, but generally just enjoying this great event. At the same time we're very conscious of the conflicts that are going on in northern Sudan (both Darfur and the Nuba Mountains), and of isolated outbreaks of violence within the South. Challenging times ahead, but for now a time of celebration.

I was running a check of "who has books like mine" and your name was the highest count. I suspected, from your handle, that you were an ML reader.
Book collecting is a full-time occupation, and one wouldn't get far if one took time off for frivolities like reading" - A.N.L. Munby

Love this. When I was making a living in libraries this was true for me.Now, retired, it is no longer. I cannot resist reading all night and I truly am reading most of the books I am buying....mostly thrift stores, even some goodies like the Bin Laden family at Big Lots....until I start on a particular interest and go to bookstores.

Thanks for sharing
Book collecting is a full-time occupation, and one wouldn't get far if one took time off for frivolities like reading" - A.N.L. Munby

Love this. When I was making a living in libraries this was true for me.Now, retired, it is no longer. I cannot resist reading all night and I truly am reading most of the books I am buying....mostly thrift stores, even some goodies like the Bin Laden family at Big Lots....until I start on a particular interest and go to bookstores.

Thanks for sharing
lawecon explains it all for us:
Thanks Bob, although it wasn't really that difficult!
Hey, I'm happy you got the book, Moral Clarity. I do hope you read it and share what you think. It's one of the better books I've ever read, which is probably because I think humans should try to capture more of the ideal... work for the "ought" instead of settling for the "is".
The epigraph to Napier's Bones was some version of this Augustine quote:

from De Genesi ad Litteram II, xvii, 37
"Quapropter bono christiano, sive mathematici, sive quilibet impie divinantium, maxime dicentes vera, cavendi sunt, ne consortio daemoniorum animam deceptam, pacto quodam societatis irretiant."

{Translation published in Mathematics in Western Culture (1953)}:
The good Christian should beware the mathematician and all those who make empty prophecies. The danger already exists that the mathematicians have made a covenant with the devil to darken the spirit and to confine man in the bonds of hell.

Quote of the Day:

"The only radical remedy I know for dipsomania is religiomania," is a saying I have heard quoted from some medical man.

--William James, Varieties of Religious Experience
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A LOT of the discussion over in the Hellfire Club makes me feel as out-of-my-league as Charlie Brown....

(And thanks to LTer 'SilentInAWay' for reminding me of this "Peanuts".
Did you notice the bottom: Thank you for your patients? Lol!
Bob old bean!! I just saw that Toronto guide in your recent add-ins--might we surmise a practical purpose behind it?! Love to Maggie & kiddos.


monkeybrite, etc.

Walter Cuenin

Paul Wilkes, Annals of Religion, “The Reformer,” The New Yorker, September 2, 2002, p. 50

Read more

moral panic and conservatives

"A sense of moral panic over the erosion of traditional values is present in every strain of American conservatism, each of which posits different solutions to the problem. The dismantling of the welfare state is one, while conservatives like Brooks generally advocate awesome new wars as a way to make Americans strong and awesome again. How lucky for them that both are on the table. " - Adam Serwer

Evolution in action:
I just noticed your comment — haha! Well played, well played!
THanx for the warning about whatsizname, the creationist troll. I don't know why those fazersnappers get my goat the way they do ( think of the xkcd cartoon...
guy is at his computer, staying up late because "This is important. There's someone whose WRONG on the internet" ). Maybe there are a few wires loose in my brain.

My eye just lit on this bit in your "about my Library" blurb:

(One reason I immediately joined LT is because Tim used the word "folksonomies" in a sentence. Clearly, I belong here.)

Bingo! Though I can't say I've been very organized to date about my ontology (or is it taxonomy?) Maybe I'll get to it one day when I'm retired ;-)

We're finding the Pepys' rule hard to enforce, though we have one extra incentive. Our "master plan" (insofar as we have any plan at all) is to completely relocate "some day", to our Colorado location. We split our time now between NY and Durango. Actually, we've come to like the "bi coastal" arrangement, but we didn't think we'ld be able to afford it when completely retired. As it turns out we are now both completely "at leisure" and so far, it looks as if we CAN swing it, just barely, at least for a while. Nevertheless, if or when the day comes that we decide to "pull the plug" on fun city, we'll have a major "throw out the junk" problem, which we're trying to mitigate by keeping the junk level down to a dull roar before hand. Its something of a losing battle.

An example is worth a million trillion words, is what I always tell my students. Hi-de-hi!
Bob, Hiiii! It is Iiiii-the Red Menace!!

In case you're still reading the What's the point of God thread, please know that Tim suspended my account and barred me from replying to his last post in What's the point of God thread. Here's what I meant to post after 115:

"I was just trying to find out how petty vindictiveness feels. I don't know, doesn't do anything for me. Sure floats YOUR boat, eh?"

It will keep till Monday for most, but there are a few people who will enjoy the ironies NOW.

Thank'ee kindly, Bob; sometimes I wonder if I do more harm than good.
Thank you!
Impressive library.
they rank Toronto at #4.


THANK you, Bob, that'll make smile some friends--and my mom, in different ways!
That was pretty funny, thanks. I did notice the letter from the executive director of PBS correcting their statement that hours have been cut. Of course we understand the entail - we've all read Pride & Prejudice... So, you enjoyed it? No problems with the DVDs?
Thanks. I think my brain must have needed something to do.
I hope I'm the first to inform you about...Steampunk Palin!
Thousands didn't. All my beautiful wickedness, melting....

Oh well. Can't win 'em all.

Thanx for being alert.
Re: The Three Stooges Book of Scripts-

They used scripts?!
I have an active 1900ish FIDE ELO with no signs of improvement for the last 10 years at least :) Tough game.
I have a special interest in chess history and I have a blog that usually covers chess in historical context (in Greek alas, though certain people have informed me that is readable through google translate)-->

The chess collection is the only one here in LT that I keep up-to-date with all my purchases and try to tag it properly.

Your library here deserves serious investigation :)
You sir have the most imporessive Scifi collection I have ever seen

It's a pleasure browsing it, thanks for sharing it with us LTers
Ah, I'm glad the two of you have had a chance to geek out on this. This is a pretty fab app - do you suppose drivers will be holding their iphones up to highway signs while they drive?
This would probably run on an iPod Touch. You'd pay a bit more for the device than for a new-cell-contract iPhone, but you'd be spared the cell contract costs.

I've never seen They Live, but have read descriptions. Are you thinking of, not language translation, but translation of advert text into commands from the giant lizards from outer space? I'm sure that'll happen soon.

Bruce Sterling is very big on augmented reality these days. Covers it on his blog at

Hey, how about an app that videos a few seconds of a person's body language and tags him/her "civilian" or "terrorist." DHS is bound to find a few uses for that one.

Or one for use in nightclubs/bars. Video that hot person you're chatting up and it tags them "interested" or "not interested," or maybe "really single" or "married and pretending otherwise." Why try understanding your fellow humans - there's an app for that.
Definition of a dead language: one that lacks a Quest Visual translation pack.
Actually, I'm almost more impressed by the fact that it keeps the translated text inside the sign's graphical elements. Also, that the "Otavio" guy is very handsome for a coder...
Times like this, I wish I were younger so I could see more of where all this goes.

Our iPhones are 3G's only, two generations old now, but I may upgrade mine to iOS 4 just to try it out.

OTOH, now we can invade other countries while starting with even fewer Americans who speak their languages.
Oh, I knew there was a reason we all get along so well...
Sadly, seems you're right--there are bookcases along the walls, mostly new paperbacks, and huge empty spaces in the middle of the rooms. They are setting up game consoles in the cellar. O tempora, o mores!
Bob! Long time no chat! Your erstwhile sci-fi fave, Bakka/Phoenix, has just opened in a VERY nice downtown spot, Harbord-Spadina, in place of (late and lamented) Atticus Books. At least it's a bookstore, and not some yuppie resto/coffeeshop/shmatta abomination.

So, when are you coming to check it out? Tell Maggie. I await you monkeybrite.

That was one of my rare moments of lucidity, I admit. But I have to also admit that my comment wasn't wholly original. Austin Bramwell, writing in the American Conservative, put much what I wrote into much better terms. His other articles in TAC are worth reading if only to witness how utterly fed up he is with other conservatives and conservatism. His review of Jonah Goldberg's Liberal Fascism is epic.
It's just ironic that in considering the tone of McCrace's comments and my evaluation of them, I'm the one who gets singled out as "angry".

Of course, for conservatives, the proper term is "outrage". Gives it a nice patina of justification, don't you think?
No problem, I drove past it yesterday on my way back from the shore and was wondering if you'd gotten a chance to stop there yet. I've really tried to cut back on my book purchasing so it's been about a year or so since I've been there myself. It does seem to get a lot of inventory turnover, as you can stop in a month later and find things that weren't there before.
Also, the BIG Chelmsford library sale begins tomorrow at 9 am. You best drive down tonight.;-) The dealers start lining up at 6 am. (Rte 495 to the 110 Chelmsford exit. Head towards Chelmsford and probably there will be signs before you've gone a half mile. It's in the old gymnasium behind the town hall usually.

I may skip it this year. I really, really don't need anymore books. I think no words are necessary. - L
What a great collection! You've turned me on to quite a few books I didn't know about. Thanks.
And here I thought that transit of Venus photo with the black spot was an oblique reference to a Sting tune...
This is the one (across from Pearl paint): 765 Route 17 South
Paramus, NJ 07652-3112

They sell folio society and easton press books near the entrance (just the back of the store really). It's a decent sized inventory, and most everything is fairly priced. Plus AC and very little dust or mold!
FYI, I uploaded a cover for "Auks, Rocks and the Odd Dinosaur" in case you want to use it.
You are welcome. I doub it will count for much though, Oakes pretty much hates me at this point. That's what happens, I suppose, when you call him out for routinely lying.
Hi Bob,

Impressive library! Love it!

I look forward to talking with you in the groups.

Yay! We must meet & plot the next revolution!
Long live labour, comrade Bob!
You might be interested to know that the folks at bookblotter have conducted a poll of owners of bookblotter based on the question, “Who has the most interesting name at LibraryThing?” While we certainly aren’t knowledgeable about all names used at LT, we are aware of quite a number. Competition from other folks at LT was tough and some offered, shall we say, remuneration in exchange for the right vote. In any event, after vigorous campaigning, deep discussion, a few dirty tricks and some Chicago style politics, a conclusion was reached and, by the smallest of margins, AsYouKnow_Bob won. It was a squeeker. By now, you are probably curious as to the voting result. And, we’re going to tell you… It was one to zero!

Congratulations from the folks at bookblotter!

P.S. We also enjoyed poking around in your library (idea provoking group under the tag “atlases”) and reading quite a few of your reviews. One fascinating idea is the book “They Call Me Naughty Lola” on the personals in the LRB. Although your review is correct; only in small doses...

So, we also designated your library as an interesting library. A double win!
Thank you for sharing your library on LibraryThing. I gained great pleasure from reading about how your collection has grown and how you have collected certain series of SF books and magazines. I remember the DAW books that my brother had when we were kids. I picked up his habit of reading science fiction, but not nearly to the extent that he did. I have kept several Isaac Asimov magazines that I picked up over the years, and for short stories, I like magazines even better than anthologies, because the dated advertisements are so interesting. I have no hope of ever logging all of my collection on LibraryThing, because I have a reading log book of all the library books and my own books that I have read over the last 25 years or so, and the unlogged-in books from before that.
Thanks for the link. I'll pass it along to some of my friends who will then, hopefully, organize a brunette parade. :D
I'm not sure why my stitching military hardware would cheer you, but glad it did! :D
Hi Bob,

I tracked you down through your Greenwich Village Trilogy tag. I'm close to completing the task of cataloguing the family library on LT. My wife and I only have around 1,750 books in the house. We don't have a very big house, and we've lived in it for over 30 years, and we've been operating on the "buy a book, throw a book away" for quitev a lot of that time. Consequently I have thrown out a lot of the science fiction that I owned from the sixties and the seventies. When I came to catalog "The unicorn girl" I was horrified to realise that I had thrown out the other two! How could I do this? I graduated to sf from reading fantasy as a child - The Lord of the Rings, Narnia, Alan Garner, etc. My wife and I met if not at a science fiction convention then at a committee meeting that was organising one (the 1975 Worldcon in Melbourne), but we gave all that up in 1985 after barely surviving working on the 1985 Worldcon in Melbourne. One of the results of the cataloguing exercise is that I'm re-purchasing some of the books I've tghrown out over the years. I just wish I knew ehere I was going to put them...

Just a reminder:

Answers to History Fans New Year's Quiz are due by the end of this Saturday, Jan 9. Just submit them in a private comment on my profile. Thanks! :)

Thank you and Maggie so much for the Hartwell anthology - arrived yesterday. I had thought about getting it on a few occasions, but never got around to buying it, so it's very welcome!
Hey there, does the Lenin Anothology (ed. Robert C. Tucker) contain full texts or only excerpts?

Just stopping in and saying hello!

I found your site online and really like the books you have chosen. Thanks!
Thank you for the message Bob - I have enjoyed reading your blog, by the way, and hope we keep in touch.

Re: leaving behind the large catalogue, let me put it this way - I have been spending more time here than on those 3700 books!
please join my Author Chat at []
we are talking about new writers, publishing, and the future of the library

I will have this author chat until Novl 6th thanks to abby Blanchy/librarything head librarian. So please drop by to leave a message & say a bit about your work, too
You're welcome, Bob. Yes, we'll expect you here at the house for that weekend;-) Best, Lois (Coming for Boskone?)
#59 Another reason I post is because I get angry at ignorant, bigoted or nasty things that people often say in these forums.

Now THAT is the funniest thing I've read here in weeks.

Perfect. Absolutely Perfect.
That's interesting, Bob, but if we look a little closer at who else is included, we note that most of the contributors are contemporary genre writers, with a splash of Oates and Nabokov. A common practice:-)

btw, Comma Press in the UK is putting out an anthology — a partnership between SF authors and scientists — called "When it Changed" edited by Geoff Ryman. It due out any day. I've bought three books from this publisher in the past... Here's the info on the book:

Best, Lois
I too appreciate finding an Ace Doubles fan and fellow SF collector.

I am currently on vacation out of town. I have cataloged about the first third of my ace doubles. I hope to finish by the end of the month.
well thank you BOB. also glad to know another BOB :D
Down in Texas, they call me Interpunction Kid. Those who lived to tell the tale, anyway.
Aha! Thank you muchly. :)
~~~ OK. Since among the many books we share are some of my favorites I will thank you for your comment on my (relatively) naive comment. I truly am surprised, tho, that sites are destroyed and hope that never happens to LibraryThing. *** Wish you lived nearby so I could give you the big box of Fantasy and SF mags we have from their longago beginning.
I forgot to ask, what`s your favourite Bill Nelson song ? Mine used to be Twilight Capers, but Beauty Secrets also a firm favourite.
With your permission, I will rummage about in your sci-fi library to see what I've missed reading over the years... I, too, started reading it at age twelve, and that was a loooooong time ago... :)
Hallo aus Deutschland! :o)
i hope you find my "tiny" library just as interesting as i find yours!

in fact this is the internet-page i looked for for many many years ... just to realize, it's been here since 2005. :o/ better late than never ... really amazing page, i mean YOUR profile page as well as LT, of course ... ;o)
Thanks Bob, looks like an interesting site.
At least the US now has a Marxist President and a Congress full of collectivists....

Ahhh, here's a prophetic verse for you (chorus from a song I don't remember):

"Amerika i Engleska bit će zemlja proleterska!" : "America and England will be(long to the) proletarian(s)!"

My uncle taught it to his colleagues when he was working for Dow Chem in Louisiana--he did not try to repeat this stunt in Libya. :)

Long live labour!!!

Wishing you and Maggie a beautiful May, Bob.
Hi Bob, Yes, thanks for thinking of us but Michael saw the sale on the Nielson Hayden site (which he religiously reads but never posts). And, it seems we already have the books on sale any way. The Maureen McHugh collection will sport a blurb from me in the front (under my previous name:-) I also posted the sale to Club Read last night. Looking forward to seeing you in the Berkshires! Best, Lois
Thank you Bob! I was tremendously impressed with your library,and intend to plumb it for inspirations for my next reads. :)

I enjoyed your comment about my literary leanings. Tragically, I was recently subjected to a Gothic/children's lit/erotica [sort of] fusion in the form of *Pureheart* - one of LibraryThing's recent Early Reviewers offerings. My review, along with many of those by fellow reviewers, tells the tale of this painful read . . . As much as I like an eclectic mix of reading material, rest assured that I do *not* want to see it all between the same pair of covers!

All the best,
Thanks for the link!
Re: Bill

You might be interested/amused to know that Bill was responsible for one of my many his-hearings of lyrics.( One of my friends believes my mis-hearing of lyrics can actually be better than the correct version - for a long time I believed Slade sang "Does your Granny own Australia ?" in their song Merry Xmas Everybody and was quite disappointed to learn it`s actually "Does he ride a red-nosed reindeer ?"). Anyway, for years I wondered why in Beauty Secrets (one of my favourite Bill tunes), our man sang of someone "Having a ball with the men in velour" . Odd, I thought, but it was the `70s. Only when I wore one copy out and replaced it with one with a lyric sheet did I learn it`s "Men of the law" someone was having a ball with !


High time I told you how much I appreciate your "true crime" tag. :)
Indeed we are and in deeds he is.
RE: Bill Nelson/Be Bop

Very impressed about Bill/Be Bop. I don`t know why he was for a time very anti- his own back catalogue, to me Be Bop were one of very few bands to be consistently energetic, melodic and musically innovative. I actually think he was a terrific songwriter as well as a great player.

What was he like in person ? I could imagine him to be quite difficult, though the fact he`s chosen to live for many years close to his origins in defiantly unpretentious Yorkshire perhaps indicates he`s not as arty as some have suggested.


Hi AYKB -- I was moving some reviews over here, including an old one for The Bright Companion by Edward Llewellyn, and I noticed that (a) you have this book too, and (b) it was actually part of a series, or at least a trilogy. Do you know anything about the other books or the series? I am having trouble finding out info. tx, laura
It's actually my husband who's the DAW collector, but we don't divide up our library, so everything's here on LibraryThing. I didn't think to use the DAW tag until I'd already catalogued everything, so it's not apparent that we have all the DAWs through about 700, and a good many of the 700s. Not sure how much further Fred will want to go, since there start to be a lot of hardcovers soon, I think, and the paperbacks are no longer the true firsts. And he's sort of a maniac about having true firsts.
Never thought I'd come across someone who had more than 2000 of the same books in his library as I had in mine! Or, for that matter, who would have the humor to name himself "As you know, Bob." Small world, ain't it?

looking at some of yr history might be one of the very few people on LT (or the planet) who might find my Phud vaguely interesting. I was attempting to interrelate the conceptual and practical beliefs and feedback mechanisms by which european ideas about health/disease/environment influence their settlement in N. America, and, in return how the experience in the new world altered conventional medical as well as just biological thought up through the adoption of germ theory. That is, if i had managed to write a readable thesis, instead of a turgid jargon laden tome.
(triggered by noticing Pox Americana). Though we had PLENTY of other deadly epidemics to cope w/! Cholera, yellow fever, malaria, diptheria, flu (ague)..etc.
Freezing water. Pure geeky curiosity, way beyond what the OP was asking, I thought it was just one of those things I knew how to calculate, a little bit of applied physics. The moment you start looking at it properly though, it becomes a bit more complicated. The answer in the thread is still not real world, but should be close enough for most purposes. I'm still not sure how you translate an energy requirement into a temperature differential (ie in your -20 freezer, how long does that 80cal/g take?) or how you model all the real world non-uniform processes.

"Nothing to read in the house!" Major Laugh Out Loud moment.
"Bobby" Jindal is the best they have, and he's an idiot who thinks that sometihng called "volcano monitoring" is a frivolous waste of taxpayer money.

"Vancouver! Vancouver! This is it!" David Johnston's voice crackled over the radio link from Coldwater Observation Post, north of Mount St. Helens, on the clear Sunday morning of May 18, 1980. Seconds later, the government volcanologist was engulfed in the volcano's gigantic lateral blast. - from the USGS Obituary

Faceless government bureaucrats like Johnston have saved thousands of American lives - oh, and have laid down their lives doing their wingnut-mocked job - while monitoring volcanos. Johnston spent his last week on earth convincing the Forest Service and the State of Washington to evacuate the area around Mt. St. Helens, and saved hundreds if not thousands of American lives.

Does Jindal think the NOAA crews who fly into hurricanes are equally frivolous?
Cryptonomicon I wish I could spell..... At least I can proofread.
I don't disagree about the vocabulary or anything else you said about NS. I too rave about Crytonomicon, but I barely made it through Quicksilver, so you're ahead of me there. (I didn't hate it; just seemed a lot of effort for what I was getting. I'll get to the other 2/3 eventually.)
A couple of hundred pages into Anathem it turns into a harder and harder scifi adventure. I'm finding it much easier to read than anything else of his (haven't read Zodiac, so I don't know about that). Philosophy has always been a closed book to me, so it's a heady experience to find myself following his arguments. He isn't totally disregarding Latin/Greek roots, so I guess somebody could make a case for the evolution of language. (I wouldn't try.) And as a former teacher, I like the narrator. He's not the quickest kid in the class, but he's the one who sees connections and has some leadership qualities. If I could read just one thing at a time, I'd polish this one off, but that's not my style....
Thanks for reading this ramble1

thanks very much for the flowers....
Bob, did you not like Anathem because it's too easy? I'm about half through and being royally entertained - but I'm easy.....
i'd certainly think both Good Fairies and Lonely werewolf girl would be fine for any teen. Lonely Werewolf has a LOT of satirizing of the fashion industry so a daughter might like it more than a son. Both have a modest amount of sex & drugs - but really much more by implication than by detailed description.
You are encouraging to me. My daughter believes that I should get rid of my books and rely on the books in libraries. As former librarian I can certainly understand that. I started collecting systemaically when I began traveling 10 years ago and purchased representative books where I stayed or visited. Therefore I have books about Hamilton New Zealand, Antigua, and on a recent visit to George Washington sites near Colonial Beach and Fredericksb urg I have items about his his mother (her home) and his sister and brother-in-law, important people in their lives. Then there are the books related to my doll collection, international dolls (countries) and presidents, and especially their wives autobiographies and biographies.

Wow, yes I do have a lot of books. It will probably end up at about 3000 and the best I can do right now is box them in the basement. I would prefer to fill my rooms with shelves and have them around them.

Probably a note just to myself, but I feel that you can understand.
Bob -
have you read either of your Millar books yet? I found them both great fun, esp "Suzy, led zep and me" which hit rather too close to home in the protagonist's essential cluelessness and my own at his age. But i sure laughed a lot. And Millar has a very good heart. I also liked Lonely Werewolf Girl, lots of wonderfully silly conceits, but could have shed 75 pages or so.
Holy Moly! I've added your collection to my interesting libraries as a reference for all things scifi. I hope that's O.K. I believe that you are now my hero.
Our overlapping books are pretty nutty. Like, who has read Duluth? Or Get a Life!? Or the Aztec Treasure House?

I started fiddling around with LT looking at the largest libraries and became intrigued by the people who have them. It is encouraging to me that there is really something respectable about deciding to organize a personal library and not my daughter insists....compulsively HOARDING.

Love your blog. Especially enjoyed the 2005 short biographical piece about your father.
A nitpick on your review of _The Last Nazis_: you say "their were scattered incidents"; should be "there were".

When I saw the newly added title, I also thought of the resisting-Nazis story from the early part of the Iraq war; good to see you noting the connection. I remember reading somewhere that the US occupation once carried out a hidden-weapons search in which 800,000 US troops went door-to-door - a somewhat larger number than we had available for that sort of service in Iraq.
Bob, that's beautiful.

I know exactly ONE other person who'll swoon.
Anything else you might recommend about power laws?
Thanks for adding me to your interesting libraries list. Although due to size and content, I believe yours if far more interesting. :-) Thanks for the Dan Simmons, also!
Dear AsYouKnow_Bob's: Thank you for stopping by "Pilgrim's Progress" and telling us about "God's Hooks". I will certainly look for it. God bless. YangGuy
Bob, I just wrote a note to you and lost it all. Anyway, I think I have some of those wonderful books you mentioned, the sci-fi books I have contain a full novel on each end of the book, one need only flip it over to read the other. I came across it at a library discard sale for $5.00 for the whole box. I had a desire to expand my sci-fi reading and had been foraging the usual suspects, Heinlein, Asimov,which were also in the box but it had some strictly scientific tomes, some on physics, and the wonderful double books, but those are fiction. Tom'w I will check on them and see if you can verify a few of the titles with me. I'm not expecting them to be of value for anybody but me, and your mention of them may have me confused, did you mean double-sided when you said "Doubles?" You do have a big library. Mine is not even halfway catalogued, but I too, am a gradualist, a couple at a time, when I have a minute or two. If it were up to me, I would do it all day. But I want to be an LT author so it's hard at work for me, in between helping to run our construction company in the office, occasionally on the sites. I'll be back, if it's ok, to get some sci-fi advice? Hope you and yours are enjoying the holiday season. I like it cuz people give me books! Bye now and feel free to drop in, Mary Beth
thats a cool site, thanks.
There's a thread over at "Pro & Con: Religion"

that's degenerated into an argument over the knowability of the distance to the sun.

As shown by the photo above, this is personal for me: unlike any of the participants in that argument, I've actually measured the distance to the sun.

I was one of the 1510 registered participants - and one of their 30 or so North Americans - in the ESO's June 8, 2004 experiment - and my data helped come up with their answer.

(The AU is equal to) 149 608 708 km ± 11 835 km

The excellent outcome of the VT-2004 Observing Campaign indicates that most observers took great care to achieve the best possible accuracy with their respective equipment.

A comparison with the results obtained by transit observations in past centuries shows that the above determination of the distance to the Sun in 2004 is the "best" in terms of accuracy , despite the relative lack of experience of most of the observers and notwithstanding a random distribution of the observing sites, caused by the absence in 2004 of any specific planning as this was done in earlier centuries. This success is undoubtedly due, above all, to more accurate timings and better known geographical locations, better optics in the telescopes, digital image recording and advanced image processing software.

In a nutshell, even if we had not known the distance to the Sun before the Venus Transit 2004, we would have been able to measure it with an accuracy of one hundredth of a percent by means of the observations made by the many participants all over the world!

Thank you to all participants - we can be proud of this joint achievement!

(As Randall Munroe says at XKCD: "Science: it works, bitches!")

More subtly, the point is rather that "the Truth" will always have error bars.

Just a quick note to wish you Happy Xmas/New Year.


No doubt we will see more and more of that type of thing, where 21st century computers coexist with 19th century power grids, as the rate of the rate of the discover of new technology really starts to heat up.
Have you ever been to Username carel has an interesting article (I thought) on how we resemble our paleolithic ancestors more than we do people a century ago.
What do you think about singularities or technology spikes? I've noticed that more and more this trope permeates through things, whether the web or new stories.
Suppose you had had the revolution you are talking and dreaming about. Suppose your side had won, and you had the kind of society you wanted. How would you live, you personally, in that society? Start living that way now! Whatever you would do then, do it now. Whrn you run up against obstacles, people, or things that won't let you live that way, then begin to thinkabout how to get over or around or under that obstacle, or how to push it out of the way, and politics will be concrete and practical.
- Paul Goodman
Thanks. I can see already that it far surpasses my small local library's attempt at a book club; looking through your library I felt the awe I associate with a college library's stacks.

Best, Atticus

Hi Bob,

Thanks for the welcome and the compliment. The tag is correct.

Be well,
Out of the water Bass Rock loomed, and far beyond it a skyline row of cliffs. Volcanic plug, sedimentary rock: somewhere farther along the ragged curve of this coast was Siccar Point, in whose folded strata James Hutton had discovered the depth of time, the first unconformity between science and the Bible. The same Bible had been the solid ground, the rock, for the Covenanter preachers condemned to that basalt pyramid — Scotland’s Alcatraz, its Robben Island — the Book whose savory verses they had screamed while James the Second and Seventh had supervised, with an interest perhaps more than forensic, the crushing of their thumbs and the splitting of their shins.

Tears sprang to her eyes, as they always did when the thought struck her that that particular prerogative was back: the right of the sovereign to condemn, to put to the question, without due process and for reasons of state; that on that sore point all the Revolutions in Britain and America had been for nothing. That America had been for nothing.

- Ken MacLeod, The Execution Channel
I'm still turning up stuff sitting on the shelf that was missed in the big cataloging push of two years ago.

Known to be missing in action:

- several James Joyce books
- the box of collectible pbs
- the second box of ST pbs
- at least one more box'o'college (which might be home to the JJs)

Most of the MIA stuff - which must be at least 100 books - is still likely to be under the eaves in the kids' room. (It might be time to shape up an expedition-in-force to go in and retrieve it....)
yeah..i've thought that Nixon would be reviled by his homies for reasons far worse than venality...he and LBJ would be out and out socialists in modern America. I've sort of had a soft spot in my old age for LBJ. He's about the closest thing to a shakespearean tragic hero in the history of American politics. He got so much right..and he KNEW he was doing the fucked up thing in VNam..but he let his general steamroll his instincts. It's the self-knowledge that makes him tragic..lord knows he had his share of flaws. But when quasi-conservatives insist on saying that "laws can't change human nature" i just point to the civil rights act. When we moved to small town Pittsboro in 1985..we were struck by the number of mixed race groups among the HS students hanging in the parking 1965 these relationships could've easily resulted in lynchings.
well, we got a really bright moderate-which is generally way better than vicious, reactionary thugs. And, in NC we got rid of Liddy Dole; she who accused Hagan of consorting w/...gasp..atheists. I've been both bemused and saddened as the whole political realm of discourse in the US has shifted about 45 degrees to the right of the rest of the modern world over the course of my life.
a moderate-right, corporatist President....)

Whew! I'm so glad YOU said it, and not a lunatic anti-American Euro-Commie like myself. :)
I'm spamming everyone with this, Bob, so why should you be an exception...
It's a pretty straightforward statement.
Here's a unique opportunity for all of our LibraryThing friends to take a peek at our prepress review copy of Preparation: [H]ead before it is officially published!

We are awaiting our prepress copies to arrive in the mail for us to look over before giving the official go-ahead and assigning the ISBN. Although the link may allow you to purchase the book now, please don't! No matter how valuable you may think it may prove in a future eBay auction, we don't want anyone to be disappointed should we discover errors in the physical copy.

We hope you enjoy reading it as much as we did writing it.

Feel free to sound off with review commentary!

Here's the private link to check it out:

*(it may take a minute to load all the pages in the previewer depending on your connection and how busy the page is at certain times)

Boomer M. Wadaska
Illegal Pad Publishing
I thought I was obsessive about cataloging. Then I saw your library.

Now I know I'm obsessive about cataloging.

But I thought I was obsessive about book collecting. Then I saw your library.

Now I know I'm not obsessive about book collecting. At best I am an accumulator.

Yes, that's the one, enthymeme. My memory for names never was very good, and now in the after glow of a rather irresponsible life, it is getting daily worse.

While I had considerable differences with him/her, (s)he had an encyclopedic knowledge of Federal Law and could be of tremendous help with the countervailing Constitutional issues involved with our little Amendment exercise. I hate when truly knowledgeable people leave our little coterie of conversants, especially when I disagree with much of what they say. Knowledge is king in the land of opinion.
I'm glad to be back; it's just that every so often I take a hiatus, sort of like a retreat from the world almost.
nuff one ever said my reading had to be "fair and balanced" (fox aka rupert murdoch news) and i bagged Heinlein for his crap politics ... don't really feel the urge to support another in the long line of ayn rand disciples in SF.
I've not read any Stirling..checked out In the courts of... from our local library and trying to decide if it's worth the time...take it you weren't ..impressed?
(just looking for something relatively brainless to take the edge off of readality...also looking at Bear's Blood and Iron which i think will fit the bill nicely; i happen to enjoy much of the urban fantasy although it's becoming ever more mundane)
Thank have a great collection and I'm always looking for inspiration.

"Let no one ignorant of the M-M experiment enter here"

What, there's somebody who thinks differently?
part of the point is that "bugger" is distinctly a Britishism

I know! Hence my bemusement about the UK posts!

It's entirely possible that OSC would have been unfamiliar with it at the time he wrote it. (I assume that someone has told him since then.)

I agree. That's why I asked about the background to the story... especially if he chose the term at sixteen; people may be reluctant to let go of things they think are "neat", whatever the latter cost for meaning etc. Did I tell you how I spent a portion of my childhood inventing stories about a character (male-ish), named Fairy Tale? ("Tale... Fairy Tale".) No wonder I'm not a writer.

it's also entirely possible that OSC is a deeply repressed closet case himself.)

Well, I'm sure you're in a better position to speculate (since I hardly knew the author's name until a few weeks ago), but it wouldn't be first such occurrence. But it's interesting--when you look at the relationship with the sister, would a 100% hetero man be able to commit such an unfortunate innuendo-rich situation?

PS: I too have a complete set of the Python episodes - because I faithfully taped it off the air.

Curses! You win, again!
Hey, Bob! Wouldya believe it the Pythons crossed my mind when I was thinking of possible examples to use? (I do have the 16-DVD set of the show, I'm proud to say, bought FULL PRICE as soon as it came on the market). I'll admit it took me a while to even understand what some weren't understanding re: bugger etc. Now I'm just mildly surprised, which is silly, as if I didn't know what the world's like...

Thanks -- I did my duty!
I love "low info voters". It gets a reaction whenever I use it. And what would we do without the Onion?

I think it was Brecht who said something like

It is intolerable to live in a country without a sense of humor/
It is intolerable to live in a country where you need a sense of humor.

Happy Birthday, Bob!
Great photo up top.

Terri (Red Roomer friend of Maggie)
Believe it or not, my friends and I rarely agree on anything. I seem to attract friends who have diametrically opposing views to those of mine.
note to self: it's AP Washington bureau chief Ron Fournier who applied to work on the McCcain campaign.

Presumably, they told him that he could do more good for the cause where he is now.
Links for the day:

What Is Conservatism and What Is Wrong with It?

Libertarianism Makes You Stupid

A Non-Libertarian FAQ

(courtesy of Avedon)
Thanks for stopping by. And I really appreciate your openness. Pro & Con has been a great learning tool for me since I joined LT.

One book I'm surprised not to find in your library, btw, is Jonathan's Haidt's The Happiness Hypothesis. I've seen you plug Haidt's articles on the talk forums (which I appreciate--I had read his book and enjoyed it, but hadn't read any articles or interviews).
I've been gawking at your library for ages, so I might as well make it official: your library is interesting!
Quote of the day:

Any critic is entitled to wrong judgments, of course. But certain lapses of judgment indicate the radical failure of an entire sensibility.

- Susan Sontag “The Literary Criticism of George Lukács,” Against Interpretation (1966).

Hi Bob,

Yes, it is. I'm posting only my non-fiction works for now, but I do admire Mr. Shute's work.

That's an amazing picture of Venus you have posted. I intend to do something along those lines when I retire.

i haven't checked, but are the accts/# of books broken down by paid/non-paid memberships? again, chatting w/ my sister who's been a mod on compuserv writer's group since, god, 1983, (she's been a reporter for AP in NOrleans forever) she mentioned that a bunch of her acquaintances had set up multiple 200 freebie accounts (which, given the inexpensiveness of LT..and the amount i'm saving simply not rebuying books i already have, seems pretty chintzy, unless you're really broke, given that LT is close to being free anyway, if you have any sort of job). It's also true that the average American reads
in re bookwhore87:
well...there are also probably a lot of people who haven't entered anything close to their whole library; or people like my sister who has ~ 7-8k books and is just terrified of the prospect of having to enter them all. I offered to get her a hand scanner (we do it all by typing, but we also are gradualists..the books get entered a few at a time..Initially i did most of it; recently my wife has been doing the entry and someday ~ 2500 books or so will be entered..but not for a good, long while!

A big problem w/ hanging on to a large number of books isn't just space - it's keeping the books in readable condition (at least if one has asthma triggered by dust/mold). I tried to read Priest's '74 book, "Inverted World" last week..and though the book looked "safe" by the time i was half way done i had to give up the effort (or give up breathing).
Our rule of thumb for disposal..If neither of us think that we'll want to reread a goes to the library booksale - 5-700 books have been dealt with that ways..of course i've gotten ~ 300 in return so the net loss hasn't been as helpful as it might have been. And we save books that our 24 yr old son might want someday..including quite a large library of good childrens/YA books..
Or, of course, there is always the possibility that you are simply crazy.

I didn't realize that so few people on library thing had more than 1,000 books...but, I also have no idea how many members there are on this site. I'm sure it's an incredible amount.

Best of luck with the book hunting!

On occasion I'll probably throw you some books you might find interesting.
Did you pick up Bradbury's most recent? Farewell Summer?
Thanks for the link to that piece on the Crazification Factor. I really can’t decide which is my favorite quote.
I am not spotting him eight hundred million Hindus. I call shenanigans.
- or -
Being #3 in Al-queda is like being a "creative vice president" at a Hollywood studio. There are dozens of them ... and they are expendable.

I have been wondering about that #3 al-Qaeda guy for quite a while now. Either they are just capturing, torturing, and releasing the same guy repeatedly, like a cat with a mouse, or al-Qaeda is organized like a bank or insurance company. Bin Laden would be the CEO of course, and I suppose al-Zawahiri would be the executive VP, and then you have literally hundreds of VPs who are, yes, expendable.
Quote of the day:

"Unlimited tolerance must lead to the disappearance of tolerance. If we extend unlimited tolerance even to those who are intolerant, if we are not prepared to defend a tolerant society against the onslaught of the intolerant, then the tolerant will be destroyed, and tolerance with them." - Karl Popper

Which was repeated recently:

“I’m a fuzzy-headed warm-hearted liberal, and I think fuzzy-headed warm-hearted liberalism is an ideological stance that needs defending—if necessary, with a hob-nailed boot-kick to the bollocks of budding totalitarianism.” - Charles Stross
Of course! Kindred spirits and all that...maybe. But I thought *I* had a large library.
Obviously not.
Always welcome, Bob!

What can I say, I really expected something better. I don't know if you read the whole scattered discussion, I made clear my reference points are all outside the genre (I think the only other straight fantasy I read was Le Guin's "The wizard of Earthsea"), so, I suppose genre readers see it in a very different context.

Okay, now I'm going to append a whale of a post copy from another group (my post, not that you can possibly miss my inimitable brand of obscenity :)), regarding in more detail Wolfe's use and treatment of female characters. I have to say this element does not necessarily damn the whole thing (it does make it rather unpleasant for any egalitarian), as I said in the sci-fi discussion, personally I was willing to overlook it, if only other aspects had made up for it. But, since you hadn't read it, I'm sharing this out of prurient curiosity about ol' Wolfe's proclivities--and maybe those of his fans. Read and learn!

Excerpt copy:

Consider this interesting fact--there's a dramatic power imbalance in EVERY--yes, EVERY--sexual relationship the hero has, not merely symbolic or innate (greater male strength, the hero's super-strong), but situational.

1. "Thecla" is older (but still young and gorgeous), an aristocrat, taller than S, the hero (tall height is a mark of the aristocrats in the book), and educated, so, relatively speaking, has status in the society vis-a-vis the masses, but is a mere tyrant's concubine nevertheless. However, in regard to S. she's literally and utterly disenfranchised--she's a prisoner, a "client" for torture (S. is an apprentice "torturer"). After conveniently providing S. with instruction and polish otherwise out of reach for someone of his class, she's tortured, and kills herself (he provides the knife).

(We learn later that the relationship WAS sexual although S. had been directly prohibited from "pleasuring" her by his boss.)

2. Valeria, a prostitute physically resembling Thecla. S. goes to a brothel to learn this mystery called "woman". For some reason, the proffered whores are blatantly fearful of their customers, abjectly submissive, and explicitly expect to be beaten. Sure enough, S. makes to strike (or actually strikes) the girl he chose, because--as far as I could make out-- she looks like, but isn't Thecla.

On this occasion, as in some other places, Wolfe gives us a piece of his well-earned, no doubt, wisdom on women--why do you care, the whore tells S., whether I "am" Thecla or not, when Thecla herself maybe isn't Thecla etc. The point is that no woman is THE ideal woman every honest chap yearns for in his heart of hearts. And that being the case--pussy is pussy is pussy.

S. agrees, but doesn't return to the brothel after losing his cherry. When I read this, I thought his love for Thecla shamed him from boning her in effigy, but when the sexual relationship between them was revealed, the explanation became simpler, if less romantic: he was getting regular and free sex from the "real" thing.

3. Dorcas, a mysterious young girl with amnesia (truly) S. fishes out of a lake. This is probably the most disgusting relationship (and I don't mean the soap-opera family connection between the two we learn of in the end). Practically every mention of Dorcas, especially those accompanying descriptions of sex, focuses on her "childlikeness", youth and vulnerability. She's timid, scared, frail, little, flat-chested, narrow-hipped, no more than "sixteen or seventeen", and as I said, repeatedly described as a "child" and "childlike". She's literally not all there, incapable of remembering her past and what had happened to her, but S. has sex with her the same day, in fact, she has to beg off the "third" bout, "being tired". But we get the message--what a stud S. is! But... did we get the message? Wolfe apparently isn't sure, so somewhat later regales us with a scene where child Dorcas demurely murmurs to S., after kindling him to sex, whether he's sure "she won't be too small?" What a silly, smiles S., "she asks although we had coupled before!"

A writer's writer, for sure.

4. Jolenta. The most beautiful and most sexually attractive woman S. had ever known, but, oddly enough, she doesn't seem to have any personal affection or need for sex. She's some kind of a living come-hither passive sexual toy, with the nonexistent libido (and personality) of an inanimate thing. S. notes philosophically his lack of "real" desire for Jolenta, who's so much more beautiful than Dorcas, whom he "really" desires. Nevertheless, out of the blue one day he and Jolenta take a break for a little boat ride, and... well, this is really remarkable--she falls asleep. And he's so pissed off she's "ignoring him", he takes off her clothes and fucks her, as "drowsy" as she seems to him--S. speculates there may have been some drugs in the cushions on the boat that knocked her out.

I am not making this up. One needs the gift and experience of a writer's writer for such shit.

5. I think I'm--mercifully--at the end. Pia, the slave. She's enslaved by people hostile to her people, and she putters about and toils with chained hands. Like most of the women in the book, she's barely clothed, and has a great figure. S. is immediately hot for her, but there's some pressing business etc. to get over with, and that over with, he and Pia reach the safety of her people, and he "enters her" as soon as they touch land, "she still wearing chains".

To sum up, S. sleeps with a prisoner slated for torture, a terrorised prostitute, a traumatised young girl, a woman who's at least half-asleep and possibly drugged, and a chain-bound slave.

Now, no "psychologician" me, but i'm awfully tempted to suspect that someone's scared witless of anything woman-shaped that's not bound, gagged and kept at a safe distance, away and below.

Tell me if I'm wrong.

ETA: Oops, forgot one roll in the hay--an older lady (crazy-sexy-foxy, though) he's sent to kill. She doesn't know this during their intercourse, he does and tells her immediately "after". She freaks out and begs for life. He planned to release her, and does so, but this woman too is utterly at his mercy.
For about a year, I seem to have had the largest library of books on LT.

Well, actually, I still view yours that way. There are four on Zeitgeist that show larger:

* I believe Tim has already posted that one is not a real library, but the result of an application gone wild.
* Anyone with a private library could have 20,000 copies of invented books, ruling out two ahead of you.
* The last says in their comments that they own only about 5000 of the books listed, while you seem to own all.

I know I've used a similar argument to the Cartwright (or at least I assume I have) before, mainly when dealing with subjects like canon-inclusion (ie. a map is a map primarily by virtue of what it excludes). It'd definitely be a book that I'd be interested in checking out. Can one view scientific modeling as a form of narrative technique? What would you recommend as a solid POS book?

As for looking at the world and seeing oneself, I've done enough dramamine (see #14) to be wary of pointing fingers at others...
Any thoughts on this? That's a pretty interesting Nin quote from a few days back... I'm reminded of a quote from Escher that came with one of those T-shirts I bought back in HS. It was the metal sphere print. Escher's comment was that no matter what angle we looked at it from, invariably we saw only ourselves.
hey -- it was my impression that SSB was the better title, but i was thrown when i saw GSSB as the majority title in LT. you were a holder, and i figured you would be one of the best people to ask about this! sad to hear about rosel george brown.

i've added the canonical title.

btw -- it won't satisfy your collecting need, but if you want to *read* the book before you find it, i've got it. < g >


Hi -- Query; do you have an opinion about whether [[Galactic Sibyl Sue Blue]] or [[Sibyl Sue Blue]] is the better canonical title?
I'm there under the same name - Ian Sales (UK).
I notice the HA image of the Sun on your profile. Are you by chance an astronomer?

Quote of the day:

"We see things, not as they are, but as we are."

- Anais Nin
Hi, Bob. Will we see you and the family at the BBQ?
"As the court is no doubt aware, Defendant has a virtual monopoly of manufacture and the sale of goods required by Mr. Coyote's work. It is our contention that Defendant has used its market advantage to the detriment of the consumer of such specialized products as itching powder, giant kites, Burmese tiger traps, anvils, and two-hundred-foot-long rubber bands." hee hee hee

"Sheer unadulterated brillance!"
Universality classes easily trump cellular automata when it comes to profundity. Buchanan's Ubiquity was a decent layman's introduction to them.
I only plowed a short way into Wolfram's book before concluding there wasn't going to be much payoff from it. Beautiful-looking book it is though. ;-) I'll hang on it to it, as it is pretty certain to become an infamous instance of the extremes of intellectual vanity.
Thanks - I appreciate it. :) And I'll do my best.

Hope you're both well (and reasonably dry).
For the Divine Marquis and the sans-culottes!

(Now, if I were ever tempted to form a band...)
Happy Independence, Bob!

If you're having a party, I hope the soundtrack is worthy... :)

pop trash

We'll see how your esteemed friendship holds up when I start entering mine. Two words: cabaret, ukulele. :)
I've seen Tomšič play.

Daaaaaamn! Er, most excellent! :) It's more than I can say... but from the recs, she's really very good (one always feels apologetic when it comes to near-unknowns). Eh, did you catch the circus in the first home page thread? I got a bit excited yesterday.

Music account--GO for it. It's clearly far from perfect (I couldn't decide where to stick catalogue numbers so skipped them entirely--there will be hell to pay once I enter all cca 3-4K recs and have to go back to comments or something for the lot), but I'm not fussy. It'll do. And aren't the CD covers nifty? Googling them can become a bit of an obsession though. Still, I discovered dozens of cool music sites doing that. Bottom line, I'd love more music-catalogue company. Most people didn't bother to separate them from books. Out of curiosity, which way do you lean, pure or mixed catalogue? Can't say I have very well-worked out reasons for separating them, and if collections allow integration, I may meld the two accounts. Then again... it's one thing to have a whole set of music recs called "books", and another to mix them up with actual books.

Let me know your thoughts on this that and other!
Avaland just brought the Hartwell/Cramer from the bookstore. Since we're going to Australia this August, I'm considering waiting, and taking it along then to read.

I guess they must not do ARCs for the best-of-year - usually someone has an ARC by the time one gets one's copy.
Just read this:
"caveman fiction, that is a good tag! Hope to see that one expand!"

Oh, hi.
Yeah, thanks, me too - that tag occurred to me as I cataloged a couple specimens of the genre. I don't actively read or collect that tag, but long ago I did read a children's "caveman fiction" story that I would not mind finding again. (It's too bad I don't know the title or author.) Maybe if the tag spreads, someday I'll find it.

posted by AsYouKnow_Bob at 11:47 pm (EST) on Jul 14, 2006
I strongly suspect the book you were thinking of is "Fire Hunter" by Jim Kjelgaard (yes, the guy who wrote the "Big Red", books--though I never read any of those myself. Wasn't interested in dog fiction). But "Fire Hunter" was a great book when I read it in 4th grade. I don't know what I'd think of it now. I notice that it doesn't exist on LT anywhere.
Thanks for welcoming me to the site.
I can die happy now.

Don't you dare. Maggie would have my hide on a toothpick. :)

Yeah, Pankrti are one of the glories of the old YU music scene...
Thank you for the May Day greeting, comrade. May you always overfulfill your quota.
And a very HAPPY MAY DAY to you too!
Glad you checked it out! Great bookstore and yes the sign out front is a real teaser ...
I'll be sure to check out Haidt tomorrow!
Thank you for welcoming me to LibraryThing.
THANK YOU for pointing the 6-word story thread out to me!!! I had a huge brain itch about that one and I couldn't for the life of me find it again (and believe me, I tried!)! And I was so happy with the ones I thought up. ^^ So thank you, thank you, thank you. You definitely did your good deed for the day. :)
Hi Bob,

Unfortunately, there doesn't seem to be much action in the Delany group. Perhaps we can change that! Anyway, I am in awe of your library!
Thanks for the welcome to LT. Considering the size of your library and the likelihood that people will find it interesting, much of your time must be taken up welcoming newcomers like myself!

Sincerely, ReneeMarie
Hi, welcome to LibraryThing. (We could use more scientists around here.)

Thanks, Bob. I bow to the superior selection and volume of your collection. I look forward to getting lost in your library. --KR
Thanks, Bob. I appreciate the compliment.
Someone else who knows the Librarium Bookstore! Yes!
I see one of your favorite authors is Anonymous. Thank you: it's about time I've been recognized -- and as a favorite at that.


Spunky Brewster
Thanks for the welcome note, Bob. Your "about" sections are excellent reading :)

I'm just starting my cataloging efforts, but since I've moved my bookshelves and left most of their contents on the living room floor, I'm having no trouble finding inspiration to continue the efforts. I was recently pleased to discover that it was possible to include my Analog Science Fiction - Science Fact periodicals. They seem to be uncommonly collected though - I've the only registered copy of most issues. Perhaps I'll have to scan in some covers and do some cleanup once I get all these beasts entered.
Thanks for letting me know about the Zimmer site; I just got my tattoos posted there :).
I've been working on New York State. There are so many libraries ! I've gotten up from the city to Albany County and then played around with Buffalo/Erie area and way up in the Canadian border area.
AYKB: I'm always curious what makes one thingamabrarian find another thingamabrarian's collection interesting. So I came over here and I'm still not sure, unless it's politics of a particularly progressive bent. Was that it?

And, you've got at least one of my novels on your overcrowded shelves. For which, many thanks.
I know I know! And some of my favourites will make other people gag and puke -- which is the way it should be.

But it is quite disturbing that almost every 'cyberpunk' book I've read that I should have absolutely adored... well... hmmm, my grandmother's bowel movement updates are more interesting to me... ugh. That should say a lot.

Bob! So lovely to hear from you! How's everything been? How are you weathering winter?

Thanks ever so for the link, and for the thought! Both tickled me immensely. I just adore the pic!

Hope you're well--

If you're interested in cataloging, we're ready to get started on the Benjamin Franklin catalog. You can come on over to the group (Benjamin Franklin's LT Catalog) and check the first two posts in the "Volunteer for Your Section Here" thread to choose the books you want to enter.
Thanks for updating me on the data. The last I read it was statistically similar, but this...

And thanks for the good words.
I'm adding photos of my more obscure books, including one which we share, Mathematics Illustrated Dictionary by Jeanne Bendick. I just love seeing the photos of my books on LT, don't you?
Thanks for the welcome and glad you like the modalursine bit.

By the standards of the LT heavy hitters we have hardly any books at all. My wife and I looked each other one day and simultaneosly said (of our books) "Too many notes, Mozart, too many notes". We havent actually uh "de-accessioned" a whole bunch, but we've been trying to hold the increase down to a dull roar.

Its not obvious so far, because I've only got about 250 which is just maybe 10% or so, wont be sure till the job is done, of our books onto LT ; BUT we are also big Sci Fi addicts.

We may have mentioned that our "master plan" (quit giggling back there!) is for us to retire to Colorado. We spend summers at our Colorado house and winters in Manhattan. Its a "bicoastal" life style that we've been enjoying so far, but figure we wont be able to support once both of us have completely quit having earned income.
I can believe all that about John Zorn. My apartment does have a few more practical contents than his, however. Wow! Everyone who's commented picked up my name right away. I think I'm in the right place.
Isn`t it great ?

It certainly is.

I don`t know if you do Xmas, but Season`s Greetings anyway,

Hi! I tend to pick up odd issues of magazines when I see them but I'm trying to resist all out collecting of other magazines on the grounds of a)I can't store them and b)I'll never get around to reading them! Though I am tempted to get Galaxy & If/Worlds of If collections...

Keep seeing your posts in the Pros and Cons thread, so thought I`d just say hello as we`ve not come accross each other for a while.

How are you keeping ?

As you can imagine, Ann-Marie and I are currently viewing the world through a haze of exhaustion, but are basically very happy indeed. The new arrival is largely a very contented little lad, but can certainly make his presence felt when he wants to !

Hi Bob

I know, it's funny!

I see you like Joy Division. I collect JD concert bootlegs in a small way, and have about twenty or so. Quality varies wildly. I note you catalogue music on LT too. I'm intrigued, but part of me really doesn't want to know how you do it, as I have around 5K albums...

I have reserved the sfcollectorseditions.blogspot url, which indicates to me that my subconscious is gearing up for another book binge. Many of the editions I have found seem pretty cheap, but one or two are hideously expensive, which is putting me off somewhat.

In light of the sheer number of books you have, when you say you 'like' Penguin Classics, I envisage that you have about 400 of them!

Regards, Andrew
note to myself:

foreign-born population:

15% at 1900. decline from 1930 until ca. 1970, waxing since then.

(googling for 'recent-immigration-by-year' mostly turns up a bunch of RW trash - a freeper link is hit #2)
Thanks for the tip-off re. the Gollancz list. By an eerie quirk of fate, it appears that our other halves have eerily similar interests. Who would have guessed?
Oh, duh, I already have you in my contacts at flickr. Clearly I need to spend more time browsing on flickr!
We need an "also on" category for Making Light :)

Say, I see you're on flickr as well, I'll go check out your pix!
I am in awe of your book collection. Just. Wow. Given my current living space, I would have to be very creative with storage to make room for that many books but I would love to have them.
From my vague memories pretty sure I saw it in a library once. Now, I have a mooched version. :)
Hi, Bob. Always good to hear from someone so knowledgeable!
[Red Shift] is one of those books I keep recommending to other people - but it takes real effort on the part of the reader to understand and appreciate it. I can count on my thumbs the number of co-enthusiasts I've met ... and that includes you!

Have you seen The Unofficial Alan Garner Website, by the way? It has some wonderful interviews and articles; the one by Charles Butler called "Red Shift and the Shifting Ballad of 'Tam Lin'" is particularly worth a read.

Incidentally, I was going to recommend to you a video I found on YouTube called "Barthomley and Mow Cop"; effectively a slideshow of photographs taken by a local, and set (disconcertingly) to the tune of "The Old Rugged Cross"! However, it's since been removed by the owner - no idea why. As it happens, when I lived in England a few years back, I made a side trip to Barthomley (couldn't manage Mow Cop). St. Bertoline's Church is exactly as it's described; I kept expecting Jan and Tom to come in the door and examine the rood screen or "that dead her" (= Lady Houghton's memorial, just as lifelike as described in the book - the locals like to put flowers on her marble from time to time). Who knows, given the fluidity of time in [Red Shift], perhaps Jan and Tom were there, I just couldn't see them...
Cool, may as well get it. I think what Bauer did was novelise the scripts from what a website says, but anyway, if it is local, may as well grab it.

Well spotted, didn't even tihnk of there, being in more of a find the contents thought mode.
When I looked him up a few days ago Bauer is a poet/academic with a novel - Satyrday.
Confusing - there is a volume I by someone else? Do you remember who? That might be the one I am after perhaps then.
Ah, from that link seems like there is actually 2 of them, and that one doesn't look familiar, so must have been the first one.
Thanks. So that is one of the ones that it is a bit scary to get to at your place then? :)
P.S. I used to review books for Metroland. They let me sneak a science fiction title in there every second or third book. ;-)
Ahh, that makes sense (sf for spec fic, I mean).

Funny you should pick Tau Zero as an example; it's one of the top three most important/influential books in my life. The other two are The Songs of Distant Earth by Clarke (not considered one of his better books, but I differ on that) and A Tree Grows in Brooklyn.

So I bet we've been at the same Albacon before. We lived in Waterford 1996 to the end of 2002, and got to at least three Albacons in that time period. We were planning on coming for World Fantasy in Saratoga Springs this year, but I changed jobs and have not yet accrued vacation yet.

Perhaps we'll cross paths somewhere down the line!
Ack! You aren't who I thought you were -- someone in one of my in-person book groups here in Houston.

But I lived in upstate NY just before we moved here.... Waterford, near Albany. My husband went to RPI and I worked at PEF. We went to Albacon several years; do you go to that?

Anyhow, thanks for the answer on Artifact by Benford. That was the quickest I've had a book mystery solved, I think!

I'm curious, what is the difference between your sf tag and your science fiction tag, if you don't mind my asking?
International Cephalopod Awareness Day

I wasn't aware!

Hi, Bob, I just got back from a very unrestful vacation... Altho', I was a Woman Who Swims With the Squid for a while... :)
Regarding your comment: "We are gradually coming around to the strategy of building a library put forth by Samuel Pepys: 'For every book that comes into the house, a book will have to leave the house.'"

You're lucky that Pepys didn't specify "for X new pages coming in, X old pages have to leave." That means for any book coming in you can launch some skinny little item into the abyss. Maybe you'll want to stock up on a shelf of skinny little things before the Pepysian Rule becomes mandatory, so that you have a stockpile of ejectables. Oh, wait, you'd still be in the shelf space crunch, wouldn't you?

Never mind.
I did like your recent posting in the Rare, Old & Offbeat group ! Very entertaining.

Here in Hoonaloon land things are going well, and the new arrival is expected early November.

For all the difficulties of running our own business, I think it will be good when that time comes that we`ll both be around so much to enjoy the experience, much better than in my own father`s day, when he actually didn`t see that much of my early years due to working long hours.

Living in Derbyshire is also appealing, after a very rough start, and things are settling down nicely now.

How are things with you ? Say `Hi` to Maggie for us.


Nick & Ann-Marie

Thanks indirectly for the "Birdland" link. I also associated SilentInAWay to InASilentWay. Another also for associating Joe primarily with "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy." RIP.
Thanks much for the YouTube link. Believe it or not, my daughter (who is a jazz drummer) has taken periodic lessons with Peter Erskine since she was eight (she's eighteen now). We last saw him about a month ago. I sent him a short message and included the YouTube link you sent me. Thanks again.
Thanks for letting me know about Zawinul--I hadn't heard. I saw him perform twice, nearly 30 years apart--both times, curiously, at the Hollywood Bowl: with Weather Report at the first Playboy Jazz Festival back in the 70s and with the Zawinul Syndicate just a few years ago. Funny, despite all his innovative work with Miles in the late sixties and WR in the seventies, the song that first comes to mind when I think of Joe Zawinul is "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy" (which he wrote when he was playing with Cannonball--before my time, in fact). Thanks again for letting me know.
Hey there- we met at Readercon and I just wanted to say hello and thanks for the info on LT...lovely place here, think I'm going to stay. :-) I'd thank your fellow-panelists, but I've forgotten everyone's usernames. Apologies for my lousy grammar, I'm running a bit of a fever.
In your review of Robert Charles Wilson's Spin, you say "I spotted a bug in the premise that dampened my enjoyment of this one."

I read it, and can't think of what the bug might be. I do catch a great many such bugs in the sf I read, actually in nearly all, though I usually can enjoy the story anyway. What's the problem?
That is fantastic collection Bob, maybe I can get to that level one day : D Particularly admirable Chomsky collection.
I think Mike ford's 110 Stories is as great a poem or greater than Paul Celan's Death Fugue about the Holocaust. You are fortunate to have had the privilege of meeting him. I can't thank you enough for introducing me to him. Would you have any objection to my posting the poem in Poetry Fool? They are folks who appreciate poetry. His footnote said it could be copied for personal use. What do you think?
Thank you for introducing me to the poetry of Mike Ford. The world trade center poem is magnificent. How did you find out about him?
Thanks for sharing this with us :o)
Hello Bob, Yes, I surmised you being an INTP. Your explanation of your library and yourself is do I say...thorough! I understand that NTs and NFs get on well together. My best friend at BGSU who is my colleague in the English Department is an INTP. What a great wit she has. Glad to have you as my "friend."
Yes, it seems that many people haven't picked favorites. LTer "oakesspaulding" has over 30 KA books in his library, and several reviews, but hasn't named any favorites yet.
Well, we don't see eye to eye on most things, but since you and I are two of the only three LT-ers to list Kingsley Amis as a favorite author, you can't be all bad. ;-)
Happy to bring the book. Hope you like it
I won't leave another message unless I can address yourself as Mr President... ;-) F
Hello Bob,

>patron of civil servants: Yes I noted this afterwards in your profile. It's rather logical. Do you intend to rise in the pecking order as He did?

Cheers for messages - will `reply better` in due course - have been moving furniture all afternoon and too tired to be grammatical !


Pepys and SciFi? Why not? I suggest that what you describe as your nom de internet should rather read nom d'internet in French—although I never saw this neologism of yours here in France. Perhaps a subtler French flavour would be nom de toile, a toile being a web, and la toile being often used here to avoid the English form le net... ;-)

But how do you do with so many books?
Thanks for the welcome message and the invitation to join the Ace Doubles group, which I have. Looks like I'm not the only one wondering how best to post the doubles. Guess I'll use the "post-it-now-and-change-it-later" approach for the time being.

Finding a web site like this is akin to "coming home again" for anyone who loves books and reading.

LOL!...After reading some of the many comments directed your way, I'd have to say you "lead an interesting life." Best to you,

--Murray in Colorado
I`ve just been pruning some of the old messages on my profile page and realised how long it is since we were in touch.

Since we moved house we`ve had quite a lot to contend with - the house turned out to be more neglected than we realised and our relatively small budget for improvements was soon eaten up, also the business has needed constant atention to keep it afloat. Plus, I must admit, I can only spend so much time on the computer before I long to be outdoors - this is much more pronounced now we can see Derbyshire countryside from the back windows of our house.

We`re actually finding some time to relax now and I`m getting a bit of reading done - currently making my second attempt on David Levering Lewis` Du Bois biography.

Anyway, we moved, we saw, we conquered and all OK now, plus we`re expecting our first child in November ! You can be the first LTer to hear about it.

Hope you are well, regards to Maggie.

Nick & Ann-Marie
Gracias Bob! In light of the fact that I saw your use of the word in a discussion of the taxonomy of your tags, it makes perfect sense. I wasn't sure if it could just be used euphemistically with Sci Fi and Fantasy or was a whole other ball of wax: your description made it quite clear.

Thanks for responding to my comment-
Twa Corbies
Hi Bob,

I popped over to your profile because of the Talk discussion about cool profiles (it is quite nice, by the way). When you were discussing your tags, you mention "speculative fiction." I was wondering if you consider it a term interchangeable with Sci Fi and Fantasy or something quite specific or even a sub genre. I was reading "Darker Than You Think" before work at a cafe and noticed one of the blurbs mentioned something like "a remarkable work of Speculative Fiction." I'm sure some could cynically compare it to the use of "Graphic Novel" in place of Trade Paperback Comic Book (or whatever), but since your library and experience with Sci Fi seems vast, I thought you would have an interesting answer (my own experience is quite small- the only thing Sci Fi I've read in my adult years that I can think of is "The Stars My Destination" so you can take my lack of knowledge on the subject as a given).

Anyway, if you get a chance, I'd love to hear your thoughts on it. In any case, great profile page- the lot of you on the Talk thread have inspired me to do a bit more work on my own!

twacorbies (Sean)
Ah oui, JACQUES!

Vive la liberté, égalité, fraternité!
Thanks very much, Bob. :)
Yeah, I knew you were off adding to your book collection. Certainly no rush at all, just wondering.

Thanks :)
The Gerald Page Heroic Fantasy anthology I haven't seen a contents for online anywhere.

If that is handy in the Measureless Caverns of books sometime in the future I'd be interested, in knowing what is in it.

DAW 334 I think, if you have all those organised.


Hello from another Capital Region book collector and fellow SF and fantasy addict.
Yeah, that is a good point, I guess a question for a publisher to be asked there, if they would even tell you. The ones I have were generally presents or remaindered (and may have been both). so 'gift-buyers' may make up some number of that?
Thanks for your kind comments about the site AsYouKnow_Bob, I look forward to talking to you on the forums, if you decide to join. Thanks, Greg
Hi, I noticed a few chess titles in your catalog and thought you might like to check my forum site out-, we have a dedicated section to chess books and recommended reading you may be interested in, thanks, Greg
Yes, I have Myths For the Modern Age, thanks. A great book. One I actually bought new as soon as I found out about it pretty much. :)

He is also working on a reference work, the URL below will give you an idea. Myths has a great John Picacio cover too with a fab Modesty Blaise as part of it.
Thanks for your post on my question about the Readercon. *Love* your library! I live in a small apt , so I have to do the Samuel Pepys order as well. I hope to see you an your family at the Readercon. I'm doin a bit of volunteering, so you'll most likely find at registration the first day or so.
All the best, Kris
Thanks for responding to my post, Bob. I also wanted to mention that I appreciated your comment on which writers are your favorites, and which ones you leave to the kids:

"no Rowling - those are the kids'. No Gaiman or Pratchett or Doug Adams, either - those are either my wife's, or the kids'."

Those are also the writers my own kids enjoy, and that I have not always been as drawn to, but I have enjoyed the sharing as we pass books back and forth. I have learned to appreciate Gaiman, and they also introduced me to Neal Stepehnson, whom I thoroughly enjoy. I started them on Orson Scott Card (whose Ender's Game I would teach if I ever had a Middle School English class again), and they read him more voraciously than I ever did. I also shared Philip K. Dick to general acclaim. They passed on their graphic novels (and I have really enjoyed both Y:The Last Man and Finder: Sin Eater by Carla Speed McNeil), and I passed on mine (Maus), much-loved by all of us. They gave me Godel, Escher and Bach, too, which is waaay over my head, but fascinating as an afternoon snack. Very nice to connect with one's kids in this way!

Yes, had I read Dhalgren in my youth I am sure I would have enjoyed it more -- it was a world I partially inhabited then and only remember with some surprise today. But the challenge of the read was quite pleasurable even now -- it kept those creaky brain cells stimulated.
Gosh, I totally missed that. I usually check delong daily, but my net was down for 3 weeks. I saw your handle on one the comments, and it hit me that I saw it regularly, but sometimes in a different context.
Hi fellow ML'er! I friended you over at LJ, too.
Ha! I can respect that.
Hi. Took me a while to make the connection. Small virtual world.

We likely agree on very little and would probably get into it on a variety of subjects, ideologies and points of view. Nonetheless, I respect your right to disagree with me vociferously and hope you will continue to defend your way of thinking with articulateness and grace. I remain willing to be persuaded and to change my mind if I'm wrong. Otherwise, I'd be a dunderhead and an arsehole.
You're welcome. No, you haven't, but be assured the opinion is mutual. Have a great evening. :)

Dear Bob,

Never try to teach a pig to sing. It wastes your time and annoys the pig.

Hi, Bob. I just had to check in here because the Red Room AYK_Bob fangirls had so many nice things to say about you (as I imagine MaggieO has told you). Your library is amazing. I loved sci fi when I was a kid, and read it voratiously up until my mid-20's. Then returned for a one-year obsessive period when my third child was born. Like you, I prefer sci-fi to fantasy, and I like my sci-fi a little heavy on the sci, not because it is my field but because it is intriguing to me. Almost all my sci-fi books are gone now (too much moving around), but I was pleased to see you are a SR Delaney fan -- I just read Dhalgren (see my review), but found little on LT about it. Had hoped to chat with others who have read it. I have ordered his autobiography and hope to pursue Delaney further. Oh, and love your handle!
"OK, that went far enough toward an apology that we're speaking again."

Hmmm, I hadn't actually realized we had stopped speaking. I must not have received everything you've been writing to me since last December before you cut me off! Anyway, I'm so glad we've now finally got that mix-up sorted out. :)

Addressing your last point first ...

"My refutation of point "c" remains: Good writing is good writing, we recognize it when we see it, and it sometimes occurs even in the genre ghetto of SF. Because good writing can appear anywhere, even in a genre as 'low-brow' as, oh, say, golf stories in WWI-era copies of Redbook."

In 1910 Wodehouse wasn't considered "classic literature" or even "literary"; because very few people knew of his existence back then. His popularity clearly changed as he entered his purple prose period (let's say 1920 through the 60s) and it progressively increased throughout that period. However, he was still not considered "classic literature" in 1920 (just after the Redbook period you mentioned), nor was he considered that in 1930, 1940, 1950 ... 2000, or even today. But I do believe he may be getting there ... each generation he progresses further up the literary squash ladder, as it were. But one isn't generally acknowledged as being a literary master over night, any more than you go straight to the top of the squash ladder the day you join a new racquets club, even if you are the best player in the club the day that you join. You have to demonstrate that superior skill set to a fresh opponent (read each new batch of literary critics for the analogue) at each rung of the ladder.

Plum's writing was almost fully matured by the WW1 period you referenced, and by the early twenties he had definitely hit his stride - The Awakening of Rollo Podmarsh (which appeared in Redbook in 1923? I believe) is, IMHO, one of the funnier and best written pieces that he created. In fact, all of the golf stories in The Heart of a Goof appeared in Redbook that year or thereabouts. And yes, his writing then was definitely "good writing" - regardless of whether anyone labeled it as such then, or even labels it that way now. Because, I too, recognize it when I see it. However, that quality assessment is only from my OWN PERSONAL PERSPECTIVE. Just like the Supreme Court, I also recognize pornography when I see it! :)

If Plum remained a literary outsider, or was even considered absolute rubbish by the literati crowd, as long as he is still popular enough to remain in print such that I am able to currently read him I would be quite content. Yet it is so much nicer for my own ego, isn't it, if I also know that my own personal favorite author is well respected in all the best corridors of literature, and that my own choice of reading material is vindicated by people possibly much smarter than me, better qualified academically than me, and possibly even with provably better taste than me, too? And isn't that what parts of that sci-fi thread were really all about (at least in those places where the actual OP topic was forgotten)?


BTW, you loaded your last argument there with quite a bit of hyperbole, IMO. "Because good writing can appear anywhere, even in a genre as 'low-brow' as, oh, say, golf stories in WWI-era copies of Redbook." I am personally not acquainted with the status and quality of the Redbook publication - unlike, say, The Saturday Evening Post or Playboy magazines, I have never actually seen one. But even if I accept that that particular publication normally churned out abysmal, lowest of the low-brow pap, the fact is, each of those golf stories were published in the Strand magazine in London about two months prior to their appearing in publication on this side of the pond in Redbook. So however much you may claim that those Plum stories were pearls hidden amongst a bunch of crap from, say, other areas of the genre ghetto(s), over in London Plum was being published in what was considered to be the best magazine in its class - one in fact that he had read assiduously as a child when one of his own literary heroes, Arthur Conan Doyle, was still publishing Sherlock Holmes short stories in it.

So Plum's writing had clearly already been recognized sufficiently in Britain for it to be published cheek-by-jowl with the best other top commercial-selling authors of the day. Now I fully realize that "top-selling" doesn't equate to "literary", nevertheless the situation is also far from being the "hidden bright spot in a dismal genre ghetto" scenario that you just tried to paint. Good writing may indeed occur within the genre ghetto of SF - for instance, I think Vonnegut would obviously fulfil that description, but no one on that thread knew enough to mention him - but IMO Plum's stories (or at least the Redbook era ones that you specifically referenced) are simply not very good examples of some of that kind of writing.

Hi Bob,

I really have no idea why you found my post "borderline offensive" but hopefully I addressed your concerns somewhat with my response. However, having just reread that second post I now realize that it may contain something that could well be misconstrued due to my poor sentence structure. At the end I wasn't calling you a numpty; only the people that have previously flagged other innocuous posts of mine. I probably need to go back and remove that comment.

The problem with aesthetics is that it's such a thorny discipline. If you insist that there is an aesthetic in whichever field of endeavor you're addressing - art, music, literature, or even just the sci-fi genre thereof - then someone is bound to call you an elitist and a snob. If you acknowledge that all tastes are somewhat valid then you've just destroyed the concept of their being an aesthetic hierarchy (i.e., good all the way through bad, by whatever value system you choose to use in order to determine that progression). Finally, if you try and take the middle ground between these two extremes (as I think you were doing), in the end all your arguments will end up sounding like something that is straight out of Orwell ... all tastes are equally valid but some are more tasteful than others!

So you can choose to be an elitist snob (in the eyes of others), or you can adopt the skeptical viewpoint that you cannot discern between different values (what I was calling intellectual nihilism), or you can try and walk the middle ground and end up sounding like a hypocrite! Elitism, nihilism, hypocrisy ... not a pretty choice! I never enjoyed aesthetics. :( Of the three, I prefer to be an elitist simply because I don't want to be a nihilist or a hypocrite.

I think that Warhol and Duchamp pretty well destroyed the elitist position in art (if Brillo pads and urinals are art, what isn't art?) which might be one of the reasons why nihilism is now so prominent in post-modernist thinking. Anyway, I'm sorry you thought I was trying to put words in your mouth ... I really wasn't ... it's just the nature of the beast. To my mind, aesthetics is just one big slippery slope. Personally, I prefer not to think about it too much and read Plum instead! :(

Take care.

I've only listed 68 books so far - 11 of them non-fiction - and we share 50 of them, so I naturally admire your taste!

The SF and warships groups look interesting - I'll have to join those.

Tony Williams
Hello again

Thanks for the heads up on the Utica group, nice of you to think of me. I took a peek, it looks like she wants to begin a reading group and as you suspected, Utica is a bit too far for me to drive for that. Thanks though:)

thanks for offering to help me get the utica ny book lovers grp goin
nice profile

I'm gobsmacked. Thanks for the info on the author site...and Inman. The book has been of interest to me for years, one of those niggling titles that you can never really get out of your head. The only thing comparable was this short sports novel called THE ONLY GAME IN TOWN a friend gave me when I was in Grade 7. Only problem was, the last five pages were missing so I never knew how it ended. A couple of years ago, thanks to, I found the book super-cheap and read the conclusion. A mystery stretching back 25 years solved. Doncha love when that happens? I'll follow up your tips in the a.m. I'm a bit tired and 50 pages into the new Lee Child "Jack Reacher" novel. I find the series bloody addictive. Reacher solves the crime and viciously exacts punishment on wrong-doers. Often with fatal consequences. That gibes well with my northern Irish genes, methinks. Be well--undoubtedly there will be further contact between us.

Having trouble paring down the "LT Author" site you alluded to. Is there somewhere specific you have in mind? I'm getting something like 60 entries...keep in mind I'm a technological moron and make the appropriate adjustment in terminology/approach.

Thanks for the invite and I'm intrigued that of all the people in LT I think I have the most books in common
with you. I appreciate your modesty (describing yourself as a "minor civil servant"). No inflated egos there. I shall have a look at the group you mentioned and hope I fare better there than with the SF fandom crowd. I envy your collection and have a feeling that if I dropped by to browse your collection you'd have to get rid of me with mace and a Taser.

Regards to you,

wow. just wow.

You have a VERY impressive collection here.
I guess that makes me just another admirer of your library. *chuckle*

Although, by the looks of things, and after reviewing the number of books we share (167 works, 197 books) I'm not really that surprised that so many eventually wander into the corners of your library to gaze at, wander around and hopelessly stare at the collection you have amassed here. Will Durant in common, very nice. :)

Anyways, just rambling about and thought I would throw a smile/comment your way.

Much bliss & happy reading! :)
Speaking of Merrill, some of those older types with locals in 'em :-

Harry Harrison

1967 : The Left Hand Way - A. Bertram Chandler

Judith Merrill

07 : Parky - David Rome
08 : Change of Heart - A. Bertram Chandler
10 : It Could Be You - Frank Roberts
11 : There's A Starman in Ward 7 - David Rome
Hello A.Y.K_Bob,

Thank you for the welcome - some people are lumpers/some people are splitters - I'm a lumper is all.

I am very excited about this site - I have been looking for something like this for years and have contemplated actually, in the past, buying software to do the job. (Usually when I get home from the library booksale and find I have bought another duplicate...)

I imagine that I will run into you a few times - you have 58 of the 75 books I have entered - and I have only put in my Heinlein and one shelf of anthologies!

Thanks again for the welcome.

Heh. I probably wouldn't have favorited some writers if I'd discovered the function later and found dozens of names already there, but how could I resist being the first person to favorite Wodehouse? I went to my author cloud and just skimmed down thinking "favorite... not favorite... not favorite... not favorite... favorite..." It's a surprisingly easy distinction to make; for some reason there are lots of authors I read happily, even consider "great," but do not classify as favorites.

Even though I have less than half as many books as you, I too have to double-shelve and keep finding books that escaped the first cataloguing. One side benefit is that I discover (after years or decades of ownership) that two or more books that I kept in completely separate mental drawers were written/edited by the same person! Another benefit is that people can finally dare to give me books as gifts, since they can easily find out whether I already have them.
Hi Bob

Thanks for the welcome!

It's always nice to come across another Keith Roberts fan--in fact it's always nice to come across someone else who has heard of Keith, it amazes me that a writer so good can be so little known, but then I suppose the the old "lowest common denominator" rule comes into play, and that means the best known and the most liked of anything, books, music, movies, is . . . . um....ordure!
FYI, I found a pretty good copy of Michael Harrington's Socialism....I'll eventually get around to reading it......mamachunk
Hi there, had you seen
this thread on least favourite works by Card?. Some interesting discussion to read, at least for me, in finding others who liked some of the works but really disliked some of his other opinions. I remembered your previous comment on the throwing a book across a room.
Ok, will do. The SFBC episode is number 10, by the looks. These are only 30-45 minute type episodes, so hasn't taken long to listen.
Thanks for the books, found this today :-

May be of interest, there is a SF book club editor one in the middle episodes.

Also saw Dozois has a Best of the Year's Best book out too, while browsing ABE. Lol.
Yes, we wait patiently for MagazineThing also...for dukedom's sake since all of the genre magazines are his. Might you break down and catalog them anyway and tag them magazine? I'd be tempted to do ours but I'm concerned about a common format. Couldn't Tim just add a new tab at the top..."add zines" that would bring up a form? I've noticed some users are cataloguing cominc books (not graphic novels but actual comic books...).

I do believe someone was asking about $50 for that issue of Interzone. I wondered if Angela Carter might have been the British equivalent of our John Crowley within the genre. You know? Not in writing style, but in their relationship to the genre.

Dealer list is up on the Readercon website now. Start saving your pennies:-) Best, Lois
Yeah, there is a locust like plague of 'em. I don't think I knew about that one, either, or the Betancourt horror version.

To collect them if they keep going at this rate you would need a titanium reinforced bookcase (and probably floor) as they ain't small.
I also saw this, these suckers are proliferating like mushrooms, guess they must be selling nicely.

Population of world much bigger than in DAW's day, so should be able to fill a few more books I guess. :)
Doesn't matter, found 'em at a more obscure source.
When it said review, I figured that is what it was, not a story list!
Hi Bob, while I had been browsing the Australian thing, I forgot about Wollheim. You have the 1990 World's Best - any in that? Haven't seen a contents online (locus, etc.) for that one, or for 1989 if you have that one hidden away anywhere, either.

I think the 1979 has Creator by David Lake, which is in one of Paul Collins' anthologies here, but not one I have found at other than very keen collector prices.
So he may be the earliest local in one of those.


"Any sufficiently advanced technology becomes a Greg Egan story."
-- Clarke's Fourth Law.
(I don't see why Arthur should be the only Clarke who gets to formulate them.)
-- Paul Clarke, rec.arts.sf.written
I met a guy once whose house was filled like that with old computers and teletypes. He did have a fridge, sink, and one place setting at the table that wasn't covered with machines. My husband bought an old teletype from him and hooked it up to monitor our furnace, using the house wiring for communication and a breadboarded microcomputer (the only way to get one in the '70s).

PZ rocks!

Highly recommended: "Evolution" by Carl Zimmer.
Thanks for the book/s breakdown - now that I know what's in them, won't buy them. Like you I have read/have most of the stories already. Also agree with you about Card.. I absolutely loved Ender's Game, and some of his short story work.. but _absolutely_ disagree with other viewpoints he holds which 'taint' his other work for me.
Thanks again and have fun with the shelf checking.
Cheers, any fix helps. There's a few people keeping an eye on them now..see the combiners group discussion for how some editions have got isbn's from OTHER editions in their data. That makes it even harder. Sigh

On a more positve anthologies note....when you get a moment I'd welcome any opinion on the Brian M Thomsen Novel Ideas anthologies. They look interesting, but would be an import/bookstore order for me to get down here.
Sorry I didn't see your comment to me earlier.
Thanks, but I thought I'd stopped too, and keep telling myself "no more - look away, look away" and then one little thing leads to another... There are much better discussions around on LT so I'm going to try to stick to those.

I like some of you blog entries. Particularly the home ownership analysis.

And I'm not so keen on SF, but I notice we have a lot of other books in common. The question of tagging is an interesting one, though the divisions for me were slightly different - I puzzled over the divisions between national/language-bound literatures and settled on an inadequate compromise, but I did go over some of the points in detail on a thread started by LolaWalser. I'll dig it up if you're interested.
I like your little theory enough to want to appropriate it for myself. :)

I've started reading your blog too - interesting. See you around!
Hi again Bob -- How right you were about those ridiculous arguments about poverty. Folks definitely aren't interested in considering further than their pre-conceived notions. The 'inanity' comment was apt. :-)
Seems your favorite mind-melter man has a new one coming?
Right, there is that one. Possible the odd story from that is online too. I guess I don't think anthology when I think of that, but that would work.

I will look at the Bookmooch list, but there is the whole tyranny of distance/postage! :)
I finally did a mind melter tag. Off the top of my head, anyway. :)
Bob, I'm impressed with the Ace Double collection. I hope you don't mind, but I posted the photo along with a link to your Flickr page on my blog, at I don't have a whole lot of Aces. My collection is heavier on crime/detective fiction than sf, so I have a lot of Dells, Avon, PocketBooks, ect.
11-freaking-thousand books owned by you and Maggie -- WOW! I've added you guys to my watch list. You go guys! :-)
Re: Amis. What's the title I have you've never heard of? I'm a bit obsessive, it's true. Sorry, I haven't been checking LibraryThing lately; I just saw your note today.
Hello again!

I saw your post about selling duplicates on ebay. I have a few I'm thinking of selling but I've never done the ebay thing. What were the advantages of ebay over, say Amazon, for you? Any pointers of wisdom you'd be willing to impart?

I keep trying to get through your Bookmooch inventory btw, however, I'm always about 10 pages in when the site becomes ungodly sloooooow. Probably just as well since I could blow all my measly few points and not get through half your offerings.
Kaeti And Company - I know, vastly undervalued in my opinion. I managed to track down a copy of the Kerosina hardcover edition (not the limited edition) although the presence of the Wildside Press should hopefully mean more people get hold of it. I will probably include Kaeti On Tour with my next order from Cold Tonnage.
>Now, really: who has both "The New Trouser Press Record Guide" AND a "CRC"?

AND "Growing Up In Tier 3000"!
Thanks for the enlightenment: I think it's my favourite word for this month!
OK, I give up: what is "wingnuttery"?!

You're high on my list of "raw" booksharers at present, but I think that's because my catalogue currently prioritizes books in boxes under the bed, and that's where most of the SF is!
Hi Bob,

thanks for your reply. "Site Talk" is there such a group, or is it a fishing expedition.

I seem to miss a help link (for some of my basic questions) on this site.

anyway, belated A Merry Christmas and a Happy new Year.
Thanks for the reminder about Adventures in Unhistory! I'll have to put an order in for that.
Thanks for taking the time to look at the website.
Hi, I'm trying to upload covers to ace doubles that are normal sized. My two attempts have resulted in very small covers. I see you have the cover to People Minus X/Lest We Forget Thee, Earth that is normal sized. Did you upload the cover? If so can you tell me what you did? Thanks, Howie
Hey there. I wandered over here because you're apparently the person I share the most titles with (by raw numbers rather than weighted). Just out of curiosity, what's the point of the year tags you have? At first I thought it was when you had bought them, but then I noticed a few of them are from the 19th century, so that ruled that out. Is it publication years?

Anyway, I sympathize about shelf space. Of course, I have far, [i]far[/i] fewer books than you do, but I also only have a single room to put all my belongings in. Right now I have all the books I've read in storage, and the unread ones are all piled onto a single bookcase, all jumbled and out of any sort of order (which drives me nuts). Whenever I get around to getting my own house, I think I'm going to have to get at least one extra bedroom to function as a private library.

Maybe I can get them to build shelves into the walls.
Thanks for joining my group! I'm new here, and as I'm entering all my books manually (I have particular bibliographic tastes) it will be some time before I get very much stuff in here.
Minneapolis got lucky with its SF scene, or something. Cliff Simak and Gordy Dickson were the old-line authors living here (and Gordy in particular had considerable interaction with local fandom), but then in the 1980s the Scribblies started up. At one point they each told their "origin story" for the group, all different of course, and I've got my own, which is that I introduced Pamela and Pat Wrede, who I knew from college, to Steven Brust, who I knew from highschool, and to Nate Bucklin and Emma Bull and Will Shetterly, who I knew from fandom, and they ended up forming the Scribblies and all becoming published authors. In the 90s Mike Ford and Joel Rosenberg ended up moving here from the east coast (Joel in particular got hooked in through the Fidonet SF echo, which I ran). There were also quite a lot of unrelated but significant new-author startups only moderately later, including Eleanor Arnason and Peg Kerr, both solidly connected to local fandom before they started writing. Lois Bujold moved here because she knew Pat Wrede (and, I like to think, because she got a nice look at the place when I invited her to be guest of honor at Minicon 27). Caroline Stevermer just sort of appeared, and had been writing before she appeared to us. Lots of others around these days, we really grew quite a collection; even if Steven and Will and Emma are now all out west.

I remember the Konica T3 as being quite an important product in some ways; though not to me personally. I didn't have an auto-exposure camera until 1987, when I got an Olympus OM-4T; I'm a bit of a curmudgeon on the topic of exposure automation still. My first SLR was a Miranda Sensorex; decent enough, but a clear mistake for me (courtesy of Consumer Reports; I like them better than any other consumer review magazine, they're the only one that understands statistics for one thing, but they're not so good at reviewing things for specialized markets, and for me camera and computer gear isn't just ordinary consumer toys). I eventually traded that for an Asahi Pentax Spotmatic and a Leica M3, then replaced those when they were stolen out of my house with a Nikon FM (about 1980). Switched to Olympus in 1987 for the multi-spot metering, and back to Nikon in 1994 for auto-focus. My first DSLR was a Fuji S2 (Nikon mount) in 2003 (well, 30-Jan-2002), and I upgraded that to a D200 last spring (in time for Minicon of course). I've still got a darkroom in boxes around the basement here, including an Omega D5 enlarger and three lenses (there are 4x5 and 6x4.5 cameras around too, though little used). At this point the darkroom is not, I think, going to happen again. There's some slight possibility I might shoot B&W film and develop it weirdly and then scan it still, but that's about all.

"Dave Powell" rings a bell -- but maybe I'm wrong, because he doesn't seem to show up on the seating chart for where I worked. I was a Large Computer Group guy, Marlboro MA, from 1981 to 1985.

Yes, my photos certainly were linked from Making Light, and I comment there occasionally also. We've known Patrick and Teresa for quite a while at this point, though I didn't really meet him when he came through Minneapolis as a 16-year-old wandering around fandom.

Well, pleasant as this is, I think there are some people expecting some code to be commmitted today, so I'd better type at the other keyboard for a while.

Yes, I knew Mike Ford. I know the vast majority of the local authors to some degree or other, from Pamela Dean, who I am married to, on down. I went to college with Pat Wrede, highschool with Steven Brust (no longer local, but he got started here), and such. I assembled the memorial photo display for Mike's memorial gathering here; photos of the memorial are in my snapshot album (it was 27-Oct I believe) on my web site, as given in my profile here.

Huh; strange commenting/discussion system here, clicking "reply" on your comment that showed up under my profile shows me making a new comment under your profile, with your response to my comment nowhere in sight.

I've liked the idea of cataloging my library for more than 30 years. I first started doing so on punch cards. I next started, *much* later, using ReaderWare and a cuecat scanner, and I've still got that data. That was new books and books I reread, fairly consistently for a while. At this point it'd be all four of our libraries, with owner codes and location codes (since there are very few rooms in this house with no books -- just the bathrooms and kitchens, water and books don't mix). But taking it on systematically is a HUGE job, and then I think of the high risk of it getting out of date; recovering from an out of data situation is almost as big a job as entering it in the first place. (We're talking somewhere around 15k volumes I'd guesstimate).

I certainly like the idea of having the listing with me -- and in fact I've got the Palm Pilot module from Readerware so I can do that with that database.

But LibraryThing has its own charm, too. I'm a sucker for online communities, starting with Arpanet mailing lists, then Usenet, and I ran the Fidonet SF echo and their WRITING echo for a while in the late 80s/early 90s. I don't know if that's an attraction for LT or a reason to run screaming :-).

I lived out in the Boston area 1981-1985 (working for DEC), then came back to Minneapolis. I've been pretty visible various online places, and in some parts of SF fandom; I was in charge of photography for the retrospective slide show at Noreascon III. We could have overlapped any number of ways. I'm the only David Dyer-Bennet on the planet so far.
Hi! Your handle popped out of the list of people who also had Skylark Duquesne, and then I find an astrophotograph you took yourself, and then the random books from your library list on your profile page was showing Picture making with the Argus C20, C3, C4, C44; a working manual, and I was just discussing the Argus C3 with Charlie Stross on his LiveJournal, and anyway, hi!

I was indexing with ReaderWare, but not too heavily; I haven't systematically attacked the shelves yet. And the shelves actually have *four* people's books on them, it's a big household. And I don't know if I'm going to use LT or not, but the way to figure it out is to use the tools a bit and see, right?
Glad you liked the booklets - I was pretty sure you`d like them - as you say, partly because I checked what you like and what you own.

I did wonder whether it was quite the right touch to send something published by a political party (Morris) - but as SPGB is (indirectly) a decendant of Morris` Socialist League, I thought it would appeal. I must admit, I got a copy for me as well, and really like it.

You might be interested to know that Mushroom Bookshop, who published `Robin Hood`, was a worker`s co-operative (remember them?) which was in Nott`m for around 25 years. Their publishing sideline was the work of a friend of ours, Ross Bradshaw, who now runs his own publishing company (albeit he has a part-time job as well). He is very (very!)thorough, and would probably get an ISBN allocated if he sent a postcard !

You might want to know, he has published a book by a man who re-enacted (if that`s the word) Morris` journey down the Thames and wrote his own account. Our last copy sold earlier this week, but we are planning to re-stock.


Bob, thanks for the comment.
Paul Smiths's College -- that's right. I'm a Stumpie who codes because I like to eat. I recall some grafitti in my dorm's bathroom that read "Saranac Lake is the * of the Universe, and Paul Smith's is 13 miles up it". The only thing I agree with is the distance. I really liked living there, and remained in the area for more than a year after I graduated.

I brought my wife there last summer ('05). She's never been out of Texas (maybe twice, really) and I felt sorry for her because she has never seen a tree grow straight up out of the ground.

If you get the chance, you should go to the Adirondack Museum in Long Lake. Arrive early, you'll need every minute of daylight to see all of it before closing time.

Hi Bob! Got your greeting and figured I'd stop by. I really like your astrophoto. I used to do some of that with my C-8; actually took 2nd place in an astrophotography contest several years ago.

You were commenting about the user name I chose. I guess I got inspired. The concept for making each room dedicated to a major division was adapted from our having stayed at the Library Hotel in NYC. They've got whole floors dedicated to each major division, and each room has a bookshelf in specific contexts -- our room -- 001.0006 was "Journalism". We wanted the "Astronomy" room, or the "Zoology" room, but they were already booked. Check it out online -- (if I remember correctly).

I can't believe you've got almost 11,000 books! We've got just shy of 500 and we don't know what to do with them! My father-in-law (92 in February) has an 8x10 room that he's crammed almost 900 books into. I cataloged them for him just 2 months ago because he'd never be able to find one if he was trying. He's read all of them, except for maybe the 4 or 5 most recent acquisitions. He even wrote 2 of them.

Approximately how far "upstate" in NY are you. I grew up in Ramsey, NJ, and "upstate" was just 4 miles away. "Upstate" for us was the nearest bars across the border because the drinking age in New York State was 18 back then. That's a collective "us", by the way; I don't drink -- never did. I went to college north of Saranac Lake. It was never referred to as "upstate", despite being only 40 miles from the Canadian border. It was referred to as "Nowhere".

WholeHouseLibrary (but you can call me "Mike")
(I’m almost afraid to ask you, “What’s wrong with the word ‘completist’?”)

Aha, so that's why I couldn't find the correct word in the online dictionary I was using. Completist is not a word I often use (it still sounds like a modern contrived slang word to me) so that the word that popped into my head as I was writing (completionist) sounded just as correct to my internal ear. When I used the dictionary to check its spelling and meaning and couldn't equate the latter to my intended meaning, I added my caveat.

... not buying the same damn book again.

I have to admit, I have the same problem with the authors that you would call my "Enthusiasms" and particularly while I had many of my books stacked in boxes rather than out on bookshelves. I still have a big chunk in boxes in my closets but it's much less than it was and those books are not the important stuff. Whenever I go into a used bookstore (particularly one out of town that I probably won't ever return to) and I see a copy of a title of one of my "Enthusiasms" that I know I have been seeking for years, I tend to buy it because there is no second chance. In these situations it is better to have two copies of the book than kick yourself for having had it your hands and let it go (because you weren't certain you already had it) and then you never see it again. I'm usually pretty good at remembering what I already have but I err on the side if duplication rather than regret - though of course you end up regretting that you now have two damn copies of the same book anyway!

But I am at the point where I realize I probably already own more books than I can possibly read before I die, so I am already getting choosy about what I buy now. I find it very difficult to shed books I have read and enjoyed (unless they were bad, in which case I never finished them so they are either still with me but technically still unread, or I did shed them), thus I own very few bad books. So a strategy of shedding an existing book for every new book I buy, although it sounds just fine and dandy in theory, is almost impossible to execute in practice! Therein lies the essential dilemma of being a friggin' bibliophile ... :(
Koestler? Actually, *I* own it. It's not cataloged yet, because it's down in a lower-horizon strata of college-era boxes that I haven't reached yet, but it's around here somewhere.
(But when I DO enter it, then we'll no longer have 42 titles in common...)

You know, I had gone to my profile and was in the process of updating that part of my profile when I noticed I had a message from you (your first one). I had just scanned through my library (i.e., the catalogued portion of it here) to see if the number of books that only I owned (which was 10 a week ago) was still the same. If it wasn't then that would probably mean that some LT member(s) had just joined (or only got around to entering that title) during the past week. I thought it would be interesting to find which books these were and which person I now shared this book in common with.

The number of solely-owned books was now 8. I had assumed that I could easily spot which ones got promoted because they would have gone from having a single head-and-shoulders icon with no number underneath to having a double head-and-shoulders icon with a low number (most likely 2). I remember being rather surprised after entering Koestler's The Ghost in the Machine that it had shown up with no shared owners - surprised enough to do a double-take to make sure and then add that comment to my profile.

Now it was showing with 43/1 - viz. 42 other shared owners and a review. It is highly unlikely that all these owners entered this book title in the last week or so (and also that I didn't notice that it had been reviewed in coming to the conclusion that only I owned it on LT)! So I can only assume that I must have isolated my edition from all the others already catalogued in the LT database (I have a hardcover first edition and I may have been the first to enter that edition) by the manner in which I entered it into LT (except that my entry says I used the Amazon default and didn't enter this one manually) and that someone has since combined my orphan. Either that, or I was smoking summat good last week, or whenever I entered it!

I am quite baffled by this change. I also thought I had a second Koestler title that was unique to me but I didn't mention that one in my profile because it was a pretty eclectic title to own and it seemed more reasonable that no one else would bother with it. But all my Koestlers now have multiple ownership, so maybe someone just tidied up that area of the LT database recently.

But the whole point of this message is to tell you that you have already catalogued two copies of this title in LT. As I said, I had just started to edit my profile and changed the '10' to an '8' and was about to entirely delete the Koestler comment (which is probably why the final 'e' was missing) when I saw your message and instead I saved my edit and went and read your message then profile. Interestingly, when I saw I had 45 works/42 books in common, two of the duplicate works (i.e., books you own two copies of in LT) were The Ghost in the Machine (with the other two being Kuhn's The Structure of Scientific Revolutions and Orwell's Animal Farm).

Having just come from being baffled by why I had ever believed I was the sole owner on LT of the Koestler title, I thought that immediately finding someone else on LT that had not one, but two, copies of it catalogued quite ironic (which appeals to my sense of humor). Or are you just part of a great LT conspiracy to totally screw with my mind? The concept of that kind of appeals to my humorous side too - it would make me have to go through some kind of modern-day Cartesian process of skepticism to determine what sense data I could trust and what was all a big trick perpetrated by God (or in this case, LT members working in cahoots!). Let me see now, I blog therefore I am what I am, I'm Popeye the sailor man ...

WRT to no longer owning 42 titles in common, as I originally stated, that is a completely temporary serendipity (which merely gave me a good segue into the origins of my LT moniker). Based on what I see shown as random selections of titles from your own library we are already way over that number. I tend to be a 'completionist' (that word probably doesn't exist, and if it does it probably means someone who likes to finish what he started, but what the heck) and buy almost everything by authors that I admire on the principle that one can never get enough of a good thing. Hence I have tons of Vonnegut (multiple copies of everything he wrote including first editions of all his later works; unfortunately I can't afford to drop four or five grand on The Sirens of Titan, etc.), Amis, Eco, Burgess, Golding, Greene, Roth, Heller, Bellow, Irving, Levin, Vidal, Orwell, Huxley, Camus, Fromm ... well, you get the picture (and those are just the more modern authors).

I started to enter into LT some of the history titles I own but stopped when I realized I was the only person owning most of them (they account for 7 of my 8 unique titles, I think). I haven't yet decided what the best strategy is for using the social aspects of LT - I think that entering a few choice titles of representative stuff is probably more useful than cataloguing vast reams of the same author (e.g., in my case Twain, Wodehouse, Vonnegut). I think breadth of reading is as important as depth (meaning lots of the same author) and I have to admit that I am as guilty as the next person of not being as broad as I would like because time is limited and I do pursue my completionist agenda with many of my favorite authors in the time I do make for reading.

My strategy for what I have entered into LT to date has been a bit of both - somewhat selective and representative, but also completionist in the cases of Douglas Adams, Evelyn Waugh, Garrison Keillor, etc. simply because those latter authors' books all sit on the bookcase nearest my PC. The one thing I have discovered during my short time on LT is that it's much easier to be more selective with authors that reside on shelves in rooms downstairs away from your computer! :(
OK, WRT renaming the group ... I thought "The Master" was an excellent choice because I think he is indeed the master of his craft, although I realize that that is not what everybody else recognizes him as (mostly because they simply haven't discovered Plum yet or, if they have, then they are too lamebrained to recognize genius when it pokes them in the eye). But I fully realize that it may not be "Plummy" enough for some such as Eurydice. How about "Plum Sauce"? Is that "Plummy" enough? Or "Oofy Prosser's Gossip Column"? To be honest, I think the suggested title of "The Drones Club" is a little boring ...

The name needs to be arcane enough that only true Plum fans are attracted there (and not everybody that knows someone who has an aunt that was splashed by a car driving through a puddle driven by someone who once had to do a book report on a Jeeves & Wooster novel) but not so esoteric that no one knows WTF the group is about. Perhaps I should post my thoughts on this topic on the "Renaming Thread" since no one else appears to be posting there ... :(

WRT to the origins of "Rule42", yes it IS something you SHOULD know, but it's not programming arcana, although logic is involved. FYI, I did give a clue to its origins on the "grammar Nazi / Martha Stewart" thread. OMG, now I feel like I'm Dan Brown!
thanks - and thanks for giving me the scope. Wife still not thrilled, but next I'll move to the basement where the science fiction is hiding. best, scott
Shakespeare's Planet is a great book.



Actually,you`re not just a "fine man", you`re a "cracking lad" as we say round here.

Very, very grateful for the Du Bois thing, and for your kindness. Have some kind of flu bug thing or would be more eloquent.

Will resume conversation in due course.


P.S. That was supposed to say "You are a fine man."

Thanks very much, you are a fime man.

I won`t bore you with the details, but we needed our faith in human nature restoring today.

Our address is Nick + Ann-Marie Osmond
17 Chapman Court
Beechdale Mews
United Kingdom
e-mail :

It goes without saying, if you`re looking in our EBay shop any time, you`ll no doubt get a favourable deal.

All the Best + Thanks Again,

Ann-Marie + Nick
Hoonaloon Books and Bits
Hoon170 E-Bay UK
Nott`m UK
Thanks for the explanation of DAW, it certainly clears up a couple things for me.
Hey, I was wondering what daw books were? I've seen these on a couple people's collections as well as the group, and have no idea what it reffers to.
Hi, thanks for joining the Used Books group! You are definitely going to be one of my sci-fi reading heroes, I'm sure!
Thanks for the heads up on the local group. I've been so blinded by lust over your collection I'd failed to notice you're an Upstater too! JimminyCriminey!

Also, thank you for your quote heading up your profile. I love it!

PS: I emailed my BF to tell him AsYouKnow_Bob, one of the LT Greats -in my opinion- had commented on my LT profile. I think the phrase I used was, "I could pee myself with glee!"

Hmmm...perhaps a little too much information?? sigh.
Egad--thanks ever so! That means a lot to me, coming from you! I hope you'll pardon me, but I must bow down before you. I've made more than one pilgrimage to your library already (where I did lots of marveling and coveting, and not a little drooling), and I remain in absolute awe.

I'm fortunate that I no longer live so close to The Strand. Time was, I had to get past The Strand and Forbidden Planet to get home from work every day. You can just imagine the carnage. At least you're marginally safer upstate!

If you ever come down to NYC and would like to come to the Met (or maybe hit MoMA without forking over twenty freakin' dollars a head), please let me know!


P.S.: I made my first trip to BookMooch thanks to the link on your profile page. I don't know how you live with yourself. ; )
Thanks for your recommendations....Have you ever read Derrick Jensen?? I think you might like him...I've read 2 of his books... "Walking On Water" and "Welcome To The Machine"....he has his own website, you can google him....

Well, I found my old boxes with the SF mags finally and unpacked them. And one thing leads to another. I started first just making an entry for the run and then discovered that some others out there have been entering individual issues. I keep waiting for improvements in handling these kinds of cataloging, but since I have pretty much finished off all the books, I had too much time on my hands : ) And I wanted to scan each cover : )

Question: How come you are listed # 1 on the largest libraries on the Zeitgeist, but show up as # 2 if you click on more to see the top 100 (i.e. 500) ? Another LT bug?
hello, i see we share a book on godel by Hofstader.....i haven't read it yet, but it intrigued for socialism....i'm not sure...i've read some things about it, my political inclinations are in an uproar at the moment....i'm thinking of moving from the right to the center (i'm a registered republican)leftist thought has been my guilty pleasure, don't know if that makes me odd or not..i suspect it does...what would you suggest i read to get a basic foundation of socialism/progressive thought?? I am always looking for challengeing reading and thoughts...keeps me active....---happy reading

Bob, (he pontificated) you have to buy the bedsheet-sized Astounding/Analog magazines for future generations to marvel at. I did. I have them here in my den...I'm holding one right now...for everybody.
Just curious to know why your photo looks like a retinal photograph (with no retina!).

Going to back to one of my many pet obsessions, have you heard of writer from Great Barrington named Bernard A Drew, author of Dr Du Bois Rebuilds His Dream Home and many, many other books ?

I`ve never heard of him before.

Ah, the smell of a freshly opened box of pulps. There isn't a more compelling sensory input. It reminds you of cuddling with a book in a warm bed long ago, of transports and epiphanies, a smell-spell.

And the names! These people needed unusual handles: Cordwainer Smith (Godson of Chiang Kai Shek), James Tiptree (shot her husband and herself to death), and the unassailably weird P. Kindred D.

So, whenever you take knife to box, inhale, then put your fingers to the keyboard and tap out what you've experienced here please.
Just a quick note to say thanks for joining the Du Bois group.


Your library is something I merely aspire to and I thought I was one of the worst book collectors out there (although I do restrict myself only to books I actually like, will read, and will use).

Yes, you CAN have too many books. My book shelves, including the ones built into the house, are full. My husband, who likes computers more than books, doesn't understand the barbarity behind double stacking.

Anyhow, I just started putting my library up here. It was somewhat shocking to find out that I had 200+ books in only one bookshelf in one room. When I saw your library listed, I had to take a peek.
Ah, Alice`s Restaurant - I`ve never seen it but have tried to play the theme tune on the guitar. Middling results at best, I`m afraid.
I imagine the Berkshires must be great. I am a bit of a countryside buff - we`ve just come back from a week staying on an organic farm in Wales.

As for socialism - from personal experience, I would say the old idea of change from the `bottom up`, largely through the efforts of grassroots activists, has pretty much gone here.

For a long time, I didn`t want to know about `the good old cause` any more - it`s a long story.Strangely, since my wife and I have been running our own business as booksellers, I find my interest in such matters has returned. I am in touch with one or two friends of my mis-spent youth, and my wife and I are planning to incorporate an element of progressive literature into what is basically a fairly conventional antiquarian book business.

Anyway, I didn`t mean to waffle on about myself this much - getting a bit tired as you might be able to tell. Like you, I`ll have to cut down the Librarything time.

All the Best,

That would be great, I`d be very happy if you did.

Are you enjoying the Prog/Lib group ? I really like it.

Very Best Wishes


Thanks a bunch for your help. I managed to get some help from Abby and was surprised (pleasantly) by the attention to detail from her. This site really is da bees knees!

I think I may have visited Albany when i was 17/18. My late uncle drove a truck for a wine merchants, and he took me with him a coupla times and I got to see Rochester, Binghampton and a few other places I have sadly forgotten. Happy memories of a bygone age! (I sound about 100 years old sometimes)

Thanks for the kind welcome and the good advice.

I am sorry to trouble you, but since we seem to have similar reading tastes, I was wondering if you could perhaps help me.

I discovered the site yesterday, and was immediately enthralled with the idea of listing all my books online. However when I got to 200 it wanted some dough from me. Fair enough, I thought, and paid for a lifetime membership. However, despite paying the money through paypal and being promised immediate "upgrading", I can't list any more books, and despite sending four e-mails to "abby" I have had no reply.

I was wondering if you could shed some light and perhaps point me in the direction of someone who could sort the mess out.

I'd much appreciate any help or advice you could offer.

Many Thanks in advance

Gerry McDonald (gerrymcdonald) Glasgow, Scotland.

I notice you live in upstate, NY. When I was younger I spent some wonderful summers in Syracuse. Do you live near there?
Thanks for the help with italics. I obviously need practice ending them because my original comment turned all comments below slanty, too. ~BB
I just looked over what you have on BookMooch and here's a laugh, I already own the Goethe and the Fielding you have listed there. I don't have one of the SF titles that are dupes in your library. Um, you aren't considering hiring a caravan of moving trucks and relocating to Vancouver Island any time soon, are you?
LOL; I have that govt. job thing going, so I can still read nearly a book/day. Have just come upon a few odd duplicates not of my creation too - ah well. enjoy the weekend ;)
aaargh! I went to tag the 333 titles only to discover at least a couple shelves listed earlier have "unlisted." There was a spot early when some titles were dropped, but I thought I had them all again. ah well; I'm thinking there is a lot of clean up to do. Any 333 title I lack I'd be delighted to pick up (for $ or trade) - more to follow as I sort the mess. Who'd have thought organization could be such a pain?
3:1 fantasy sounds about right now; I'm guessing there are about 500 more of each to enter and then quite a bit of literature. The sf collection was the big casualty in the last purge (and I do have a pretty broad definition of fantasy.) More soon when I try to put together a list of "wants." You're collection keeps getting better and better :)
Hi, I too am a minor civil servant (in Chicago, for EPA) and suspect I might give you a run for your money on the total number of just books, but you leaped up onto my list of people with whom I share a large number.
I just discoverd LT today! Funny to meet people in the net sharing this book-shelves-problem. Live with some 9K books, not mentioning the books of my wife and the growing libraries of the children...
As of this writing I share 109 "raw" books with you. I don't own that many science fiction books anymore!
Saw your new group for Ace Doubles. Man, does that bring back memories. Once upon a time in a galaxy far away, SF was pretty much all I read outside of school work. And I don't know where along the way I lost almost all the books I had. I've been having fun looking through your catalog.
Hey, Bob, welcome aboard. It is indeed a small internet, although if I were to guess where I'd run into another LT person, Making Light would have been my first choice. In fact, it may have been the place where I first heard about it back in September of last year.
(I'm cross-posting here my reply to andyl, so that this thread is more coherent)

On the subject of duplicates -

Yes, part of it is from 'acquiring books cheaply and not being ruthless in weeding'.

More of it, though, is having variant editions -- hard- and soft- covers, British and American, ex-library copies that I keep on hand as a loaner after I find a better copy - there's really little resale value in most ex-library book,s after all) - that sort of thing; and a bit of it is overlap from annexing my wife's old sf into 'my' collection.

Some of it - say, Philip K. Dick - is from my being sentimental about ratty old paperbacks that I read as a kid, books that I've since replaced with less fragile reprints. (Sometimes the BETTER copy gets treated as the Reading Copy...).
I don't mind being #2 on andyl list, he's 23rd on mine!

I agree that Amazon has an amazing amount of errors. I think I had to edit almost everything I entered for that source. I may be thought picky for insisting on only a single version of each authors name, and on seeing the title as it apears on the book without bracketed comments after it.

Still you have quite a few things to sort out, just looking at the first few pages:
Dorsai, Radio Free Albemuth, Traitor to the Living, Ensign Flandry etc should have authors. Books by Paul Anderson, Pies Anthony, Brian W. And Kenneth Bulmer Aldiss. There are authors who manage to come before Aaron alphabetically.

Still entering five and a half thousand books in three weeks is pretty good going and it's probably best to get all your books in on a first pass before doing a sweep for Amazon errors.
I've just looked at the book we share (as you have displaced ringman in top spot for me). You seem to have a lot of duplicates - is that just not being able to keep track of your books or just buying boxes of books cheap and not weeding out the duplicates?
caveman fiction, that is a good tag! Hope to see that one expand!
I got to meet Charles before he died, so I might be a bit biased. It is impressive that he was still writing at 81.

It was only a few years ago that I read The Paradox Men and I was blow away by how timeless the story was: there was nothing in it to tell me this was written in 1947. I was also impressed with the very strong female lead. This is one of the top ten books I re-read on a regular basis, as it just never gets boring.

Thanks for your input: maybe more people will have this title as grows.
You are the only other person here who as Harness' Cybele, with bluebonnets. What did you think of the book?
LT reminds me of the New Yorker profile of John Zorn
( June 14, 1999) by Fred Kaplan:

" Zorn’s apartment consists of an entrance foyer flanked by
two small rooms, in which every inch of wall space is covered by
shelves, sagging with the artifacts of everything that has influenced
him as a composer: twenty-five thousand LPs and seven thousand CDs;
two thousand books of art, philosophy, history, and literature; and two
thousand movies on video or laser disk. The only pieces of furniture
are a mattress on the floor and a small desk, where he composes.
Once upon a time, there was a kitchen, but it was ripped out to make
room for more books and recordings. Lacking a refrigerator, Zorn
either eats out with friends or has his meals delivered."
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