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richardderus second thread of 2018

This is a continuation of the topic richardderus first thread of 2018.

This topic was continued by richardderus third thread of 2018.

75 Books Challenge for 2018

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Jan 6, 9:28pm Top

Susana Mata, Two Dogs Over the Fireplace

Edited: Jan 16, 8:52pm Top

Sam Heughan's bare butt from Outlander

My 2018 Reviewing Goals

I'll shoot for 180 reviews written again this year. It was a doable target, but the reviews could be more exciting....

BookRiot's 2018 Read Harder "Challenge"

1. A book published posthumously
2. A book of true crime
3. A classic of genre fiction (i.e. mystery, sci fi/fantasy, romance)
4. A comic written and illustrated by the same person—My Brother's Husband reviewed below.
5. A book set in or about one of the five BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia,
India, China, or South Africa)
6. A book about nature
7. A western
8. A comic written or illustrated by a person of color
9. A book of colonial or postcolonial literature
10. A romance novel by or about a person of color
11. A children’s classic published before 1980
12. A celebrity memoir
13. An Oprah Book Club selection
14. A book of social science
15. A one-sitting book
16. The first book in a new-to-you YA or middle grade series
17. A sci fi novel with a female protagonist by a female author
18. A comic that isn’t published by Marvel, DC, or Image
19. A book of genre fiction in translation
20. A book with a cover you hate
21. A mystery by a person of color or LGBTQ+ author
22. An essay anthology
23. A book with a female protagonist over the age of 60
24. An assigned book you hated (or never finished)

My Reviews Are Here:
1 2 Jan 2018 Artemis was unsuccessful, dammit, see post 139.

2 3 Jan 2018 The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu was a 4.5-star pleasure in post 178.

3 5 Jan 2018 Touched by an Angel returned me to the Whoverse in post 253.

4 6 Jan 2018 River of Teeth was a balls-out strangeoleum wild ride reviewed in post 297.

5 8 Jan 2018 Taste of Marrow finishes River of Teeth's basic arcs in post 55.

6 9 Jan 2018 Bitter Grounds is the first Neil Gaiman I've really liked in years see post 141.

7 10 Jan 2018 Baking With Kafka made me guffaw embarrassingly loudly in post 158.

8 13 Jan 2018 My Brother's Husband is a manga but I'm counting it as a comic for the BookRiot Read Harder challenge above, in post 209.

9 15 Jan 2018 The Stainless Steel Rat didn't age too well in post 283.

10 16 Jan 2018 Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House made me froth and screech in post 287.

Edited: Jan 11, 9:26pm Top

I forgot to do my 2017 ANzAC Challenge because I'm just like that when it comes to challenges. So here it is again, since I need to get these books off the TBR!
Oooh, I just found the 2017 ANZAC Reading Challenge! It's October, so I'm going with a 12-entry choice, but I'm starting out with a big advantage: Text sent me a dozen books to blog about that I need to review this year for sure.

ANZAC Bingo 1x12
1) Read a book about love--I'm going with The Rules of Backyard Cricket by Jock Serong because the love/hate relationship of these brothers is riveting.
2) Read a coming of age novel--Came Back to Show You I Could Fly by Robin Sloan a Text Classics entry that I've never heard of, which is exciting.
3) Read a historical fiction--Coming Rain by Stephen Daisley from Text, set in 1950s Outback Oz.
4) Read a book set on a Pacific Island--Pitcairn Pending by Kenneth Bain which it seems I'm the first person on LT to own. Hm.
5) Read a children's classic--The Fire-Raiser by Maurice Gee which you gifted me with on my 50th birthday Kerry!
6) Read a refugee story--The Road to Winter by Mark Smith is post-apocalyptic but the female lead is a "Siley" or asylum-seeker, so I think it fits.
7) Read a scifi novel--Dark Space and Darker Space by Lisa Henry, two very good gay-male led novels by Aussie romance powerhouse-cum-legend in that niche Henry. Excellent, if a small bit grim; together about 100,000 words and directly sequential, so I count them as one novel.
8) Read a book with a place name in the title--Potiki by Patricia Grace, another 50th birthday gift from Kerry whose 5-star review is here.
9) Read a bestseller--Reckoning: A Memoir is, I'm assured, an Aussie bestseller by Magda Szubanski about her Polish WWII spy father's life and how it impacts her to this day.
10) Read a black comedy/noir--Our Tiny, Useless Hearts by Toni Jordan combines comedy and suspense in approximately equal measure.
11) Read a debut novel--When the Sky Fell Apart by Caroline Lea is set on Jersey during WWII, written by a Jersey native who has, I gather, expatriated to Oz.
12) Read a book of short stories--Dead Americans by Ben Peek, these are thematically linked short stories and I really like Ben so I've *finally* reviewed this book! 4 stars

I'll edit this post to add links to reviews here on LT as they appear. Thanks to Kerry for making this challenge as I needed a spur to make me write the darned reviews already.

January 2018
Godstalk group read with Roni—finished chapter 8 on 11 Jan
The Odyssey translated by Robert Fitzgerald group read on Goodreads

February 2018
The Odyssey translated by Stanley Lombardo group read on Goodreads

March 2018
The Odyssey translated by Emily Wilson group read on Goodreads

Jan 6, 9:31pm Top

Jan 6, 9:33pm Top

Happy new thread! Today seems to be the day for second threads...

Edited: Jan 6, 9:43pm Top

>4 Crazymamie: Hiya Mamie! Let's use these, shall we?

>5 drneutron: Hey Jim! It is, innit?

Jan 6, 9:45pm Top

Happy new one!

Jan 6, 9:53pm Top

Yes! Those are gorgeous.

Jan 6, 10:03pm Top

Happy new thread, dear!

Jan 6, 10:08pm Top

>7 katiekrug: Any time a hot ginger man's butt features on my thread is a happy time.

>8 Crazymamie: I saw them and began coveting them immediately, so I thought you would too.

>9 ronincats: Thanks, Roni! *smooch*

Jan 6, 10:16pm Top

Happy new thread, Richard!

Jan 6, 10:19pm Top

>11 jessibud2: Thank you, Shelley!

Jan 6, 10:22pm Top

Hello there, Richard! I'm saying hello before disappearing off the face of the planet again. Farewell!

Jan 7, 12:32am Top

Happy new one, RD.

Have a great Sunday.

Hopefully there is no fireplace in front of >2 richardderus: otherwise pubic hair will be singed.

Jan 7, 12:56am Top

Happy New Thread!

Jan 7, 1:04am Top

Oooooh...second thread! now to go off and see the last of the last thread, as one tends to do (if one is me).


Jan 7, 1:40am Top

Happy new thread and happy Sunday Richard! Lovely champagne glasses up there in >6 richardderus:!

Jan 7, 2:34am Top

Happy new one, Richard!

Jan 7, 4:15am Top

Happy Sunday and happy new thread, Rdear. I like the topper.

Jan 7, 9:37am Top

>13 Ape: Lookee there, it's The Ape! How are you, boy?

>14 PaulCranswick: OTOH, if there *isn't* a fireplace, imagine the, errrmmm, shrinkage issues in the world before central heating.

>15 mahsdad: Thanks, Jeff, it's a two-week thread so it's no surprise it's the beginning of the year.

Jan 7, 9:40am Top

>16 LovingLit: Hey there Megan, how goes it? Did I miss anything over there?

>17 Deern: Hi Nathalie, aren't those lovely champagne flutes? That cobalt color is luscious.

>18 brodiew2: Happy Sunday, Brodie, hope you're reading something great.

>19 Ameise1: Thanks, Barbara, that artist is a new one to me. She caught such a sense of warm, comfortable relaxation in that image.

Jan 7, 10:08am Top

Look at that a second thread.

Jan 7, 10:08am Top

Happy 2nd thread, Richard!

Jan 7, 10:16am Top

>22 BBGirl55: It just seems to happen every 10 or so days...*shrug*

>23 Carmenere: Thanks, Lynda!

Jan 7, 10:37am Top

Good morning, RD!

From your previous thread, I loved the Kindle Single American Hippopotamus I’ll pass on this book, though.

>2 richardderus: Sam Heughan is another of the many things we agree on.

Happy Sunday, stay warm, and *smooches* from your very own TVT Horrible.

Jan 7, 10:40am Top

>25 karenmarie: *smooch* Happy Sunday, my love.

Jan 7, 10:48am Top

Happy New Thread, Richard! That's a lovely painting up top, and I'm sure Sam's bare butt has artist merit, too.

Stay as warm as you can, buddy.

Jan 7, 10:48am Top

Happy New Thread, RD! LOVE the Mata topper. New artist for me.

Hitting 30 degrees today. 37 tomorrow. We deserve a break, kind sir! I hope it finds it's way to you.

Jan 7, 11:01am Top

>27 jnwelch: Artistic merit. Yeah, that's the ticket. I was, ummm, considering it as a means of drawing attention to the production crew's astonishing prosthetic work! I mean, look at those stripes...Heughan doesn't have those. Only Jamie does. Astoundingly realistic, no? a-heh

>28 msf59: It's -3&deg now. UGH. But tomorrow there's snow and 35° promised me, and they damn sure better deliver.

Jan 7, 11:35am Top

Happy new thread, Richard!

Jan 7, 11:50am Top

>30 harrygbutler: Thanks, Harry, enjoy the movie of the day.

Jan 7, 12:39pm Top

Happy New Thread Richard.

From your previous thread . . .
We just started watching Doctor Who recently. Started with the Ninth Doctor. Loving it! We're somewhere late in David Tennant's first season.

Jan 7, 12:52pm Top

David Tennant is my favorite doctor. He's been great on Broadchurch and Jessica Jones, too.

Jan 7, 1:41pm Top

I love David Tennant in everything. That is all.

Good afternoon, BigDaddy!

Jan 7, 2:04pm Top

Did someone say bacon (on my thread)?

Jan 7, 2:26pm Top

I'm on page 22 of 370 of The Queen of All Crows: Oh, Rod. *descending disappointed voice* Et tu, Roddy.
"She winked , to show that it was mostly a joke."
No. No no no. Not now, not ever, no using the w-verb ever ever ever again. I am American. I am from Texas. Guns do not frighten me.
Just sayin'

Jan 7, 2:50pm Top

Doctor, Doctor, give me some news, I got a bad case of loving you...and bacon.

>21 richardderus: Doing my best. I'm listening to Bonhoeffer by Eric Metaxas. Still in his early life, but things are about to heat up as Hitler comes into power.

Jan 7, 2:54pm Top

Not all the way sure I want to.

Jan 7, 3:39pm Top

>32 SuziQoregon: Thank you, Juli, and may I extend a happy welcome to the Whovian-heavy thread here.

>33 jnwelch:, >34 Crazymamie: +1 y'all got the lad pegged. Though I see a distinct lack of lovin' for Casanova, in which he plays the title role.

It was my first Tennant sighting. Casanova falls in love a lot, as I know y'all know; one of his loves is the castrato Farinelli. In the film, the castrato is played as a woman trying to make a living in operatic-soprano-heavy Venice. Tennant doesn't know this is the case, and freaks out that he's fallen for this errrmmm differently sexually abled person. He runs away from their first encounter, does soul searching, returns to claim his love...and in a genius moment, is visibly working up the courage to aaahhh make contact when...
...the discovery is made! The lights go on! And all that angst turns into...
...very slightly disappointed delight.
Another Casanova conquest. Oh well.

It was brilliantly done.

Jan 7, 3:41pm Top

>35 Berly: There is never a time when expressing such a sentiment is inappropriate around here. *smooch*

>37 brodiew2: Hey Brodie! I know, the Doctor is an endless topic of conversation. So much fodder! So many shades and gradations of luuuv.

Bonhoeffer's life is a shining example to all persons aspiring to a life lived in accord with their conscience.

Jan 7, 3:47pm Top

Happy New Thread!

Jan 7, 3:49pm Top

>41 SomeGuyInVirginia: *hailing frequencies open* New thread wishes acknowledged. USS Slug-for-a-butt out.

Jan 7, 4:12pm Top

I have a question, which doctors have you seen?

Jan 7, 4:12pm Top

Happy Sunday, Richard!

Jan 7, 4:27pm Top

>43 BBGirl55: Tom Baker forward. I watched a few Third Doc specials but not enough to know much about him.

>44 drneutron: Hey Jim! Happy Sunday.

Jan 7, 4:34pm Top

Happy new thread Richard.

Jan 7, 4:41pm Top

>46 johnsimpson: Many thanks, John! Happy Sunday to you and Karen.

Jan 7, 5:56pm Top

Dang, I just can't keep up around here!

Happy Second Thread of 2018 (and it's only 7 days in - yikes!)!

Jan 7, 8:19pm Top

16% in to Fire & Fury and I am more afraid for the future than I was before.

Jan 7, 8:21pm Top

>48 Storeetllr: The first-of-the-year rush is ongoing...things will settle down, I promise *there there, pat pat* It only feels fast.

I suspect that's enough platitudinous plastering. *hugs*

Jan 8, 3:18am Top

>39 richardderus: Hubby and I both loved Casanova - it very much lived up to what I felt it should, in terms of humour, raunchiness and of the lushness of the costumes etc.

Jan 8, 7:45am Top

>45 richardderus: I strated fully watching Doctor Who when it came back in 2005. I like so many of my geration were children of the wilderness years. But since watching new who I have watch a little bit of each of the classic doctors.

Jan 8, 8:55am Top

I saw a video of David Tennant talking to fans at a Comic Con, and he was humble and smart and funny. Made me like him even more.

Jan 8, 10:02am Top

Happy new-ish thread! We keep hoping they will tell us we can go home from work. It's sleeting outside. Half of the employees didn't show up for various reasons. We all want to go home.

Jan 8, 10:12am Top

5 Taste of Marrow by Sarah Gailey

Rating: 3.5* of five

This quote about sums up the basic operating principle of this follow-up to River of Teeth:

"Alone and lonely ain’t the same thing at all," Hero said, shaking their head.

At the end of River of Teeth, the dramatis personae are forcibly scattered when the caper...do pardon me, operation...reaches a satisfying if not successful conclusion. I say "not successful" because Winslow Houndstooth's carefully planned...operation, all perfectly aboveboard, not a caper at all...for the elimination of feral hippos (HIPPOS!!!) from a section of the Mighty Mississippi goes quite wrong and ends up making the feral-hippos problem more widespread.

The opposite of good.

But more to the point of our story here, Winslow's dearly beloved Hero the non-binary munitions and poisons expert, is separated from him. Archie the fat Frenchwoman, Houndstooth's longtime friend and co-caperer, loses contact with Gran the U.S. Marshal that's hunting vanished Adelia the assassin and traitor to their caper...operation...whose interference separates the scooby-group into two pairs. And so our story begins.

It's safe to say that the actual search of the two pairs of conspirators for each other is not the point of the book. It is far more the case that the emotions of the separated lovers are the point. Archie is pining for her big, beautiful lawman, despite the fact that she's a confidence trickster who's given zero apparent thought to how that's going to play out. Houndstooth, her longtime friend, unravels into obsession with his vanished Hero and makes the world around himself into the projection screen of his misery. He tests his friend Archie to and past the breaking point with his rage at the injustice of Hero's disappearance. He takes exactly no notice of Archie's pain in her separation from Gran the lawman.

Adelia and Hero, the second pair of caperers, are left thinking Archie and Houndstooth are dead. They're also the subject of a plot by an unknown bigwig baddie to force assassin Adelia into a murderous plot despite her determination to remain retired from death-dealing. Hero refuses even to think about their beloved Houndstooth, dead in the by-blow of feral hippo killing blasts. They help Adelia with her new baby. They recover from non-fatal but very serious wounds that were dealt them by the aforesaid Adelia. And, all else aside, they stay with Adelia to execute the final stage of the failed caper. Mostly because they need something to do, some action to take in order not to remain still and therefore finally face up to their grief at Houndstooth's loss.

And the spoilery bits are now open.

All is resolved. The unhappy separations are ended. The reveal of the big baddie's identity is quite quickly over and done, along with a condign fate for the rotten asshole. The problem that ignited the entire series...feral hippos in the Mississippi...isn't remotely touched by the plot's hurried and incomplete resolution.

I remain unhappy at the Civil War's insignificance. I'm not going to get happier about it, and I'm not going to get a more completely fleshed out backstory either.


It's $3.99 and it's fun and it's got such promise as a writer's declaration of imagination. Give it a whirl.

Jan 8, 10:12am Top

The fact that the UK doesn't rule the planet is proof positive that charm, brilliance, and talent don't count for much in this world.

Jan 8, 10:21am Top

>51 BekkaJo: Hey there Bekka! It was a real treat, was Casanova, and caught the gonzo spirit of the memoir it's based on well.

>52 BBGirl55: Oh the wilderness years! Ugh. The one US-centric Doctor Who movie was poorly received. It was poorly conceived, if you ask me. Paul McGann's Eighth Doctor was a good interpretation and deserved a better fate, IMO.

Jon Pertwee and back, well, the episodes aren't what one might wish them to be....

Jan 8, 10:26am Top

>53 jnwelch: He's a top-quality person, to all appearances, and there's no hint of that perception being part of a facade in any gossip. Just a good all-around kind man. Doesn't hurt that he's very very good at what he does!

>54 thornton37814: Hi Lori...sleet, UGH!! Leads to ice. Leads to traffic accidents, power outages, death doom and destruction. I hate the hell out of sleet. Hope your bosses will pull their collective heads out and let y'all go.

>56 SomeGuyInVirginia: The fact that the UK doesn't rule the planet anymore is proof positive that charm, brilliance, and talent don't count for much in this world.

I fixed it for you, Larry.

Jan 8, 11:17am Top

Good morning, Richard.

>57 richardderus: Agreed. I look wish we had more McGann. His eight Doctor was pretty good. I hear he's got adventures with Big Finish audio dramas like many of the other Doctors.

Jan 8, 11:17am Top

Morning Richard and happy second thread of the year! I love the two dogs painting. And you've already read 5 books.
I am off to a slow start. I blame it on "The Crown" and the virus.

Jan 8, 11:39am Top

>59 brodiew2: Hello Brodie, happy Monday to you.

Yes, the Eighth Doctor's audio adventures are legion! Dozens and dozens of them, all inaccessible to me due to my complete inability to remember anything I've ear read.

There were a raft of Eighth Doctor novels as well, though nowhere near as many as Big Finish dramas. Such a shame about that abortive reboot.

>60 EBT1002: I love that painting as well, Ellen, and discovered Mata at the same time as I found that image. Look at this:

Mediterranean House with Dog

Jan 8, 11:57am Top

>58 richardderus: They finally sent out a message telling us to be careful because the sidewalks were icy. We weren't told we could leave.

Jan 8, 12:07pm Top

Good afternoon, RichardDear! Any warmer out in your neck of the woods? We're up to 34F and I've already run errands and returned to my little corner of paradise.

*smooches* from TVT Horrible

Jan 8, 12:12pm Top

I've got the panini press out, Richard, so I thought I'd share:

Tomato Basil Pepperjack Roasted Pepper Panini

Jan 8, 12:50pm Top

>62 thornton37814: You. Are. Joking.

Those, those...well...I never!! Crumbums.

>63 karenmarie: All of 26° today. Calm winds, though, so it makes a lovely change to have air temp and windchill in the same number of digits.

I've been reading Wolff's book. It makes me livid!!!

>64 Crazymamie: Oh yes please, Mamie darling, yes indeed. I need food so I won't commit many antisocial acts as I read this record of 45's idiocy.

Jan 8, 1:08pm Top

>61 richardderus: also amazing.

Jan 8, 1:22pm Top

>66 EBT1002: So much attention to surfaces and still it's the deepest part of the painting, the surface, the light and the brushstrokes working to bend your eyes to the proper angle of seeing. I love that.

Jan 8, 2:41pm Top

>61 richardderus: LIKE! Another Mata gem.

Happy Monday, RD. I hope the weather is improving for you guys. We have sun and mid-30s. It feels wonderful.

Jan 8, 2:53pm Top

>68 msf59: I know, right? So lovely. I am enjoying looking at her stuff as I find it.

It's not toasty, but I'll take the calm winds any day. It's not so cold without windchill shoving the felt temperature so far below the mercury.

Jan 8, 3:06pm Top

re: the hippo books, 'tis a pity she didn't flesh it out a bit more in the sequel, but it sounds like a super fun series. I'll manage my expectations. I've only read one of the Tor novella line's offerings, Passing Strange, a book I thought elegant and wise, but a bit slight, at the time I read it. It's stuck with me more than I thought it would, which is a good thing.

Jan 8, 4:16pm Top

>70 libraryperilous: There's also Burning Girls at tor.com, and The Lady Astronaut of Mars...two excellent novellas...if you're up for it.

Jan 8, 4:52pm Top

David Tennant narrates the How to Train Your Dragon books and it's delightful.

>49 richardderus: somehow that doesn't surprise me.

Jan 8, 5:53pm Top

>72 SuziQoregon: Hi Juli! Makes me wish I could ear read without succumbing to unconsciousness.

It gets worse.

Jan 8, 7:19pm Top

>57 richardderus: I don't judge Classic who the same I judge new who. Tecnology has come a long way since 63 and even 94. I judge on story and the ability of the actors to make me belive. I like quite a few of the Pertwee stories 'Inferno' is brilliant if a little long winded and 'Terror of the Altons' is terriffing.

Patrick Troughton is my favourite Doctor ever. He is so wry, sweet and a tad batty.

Just so you know there is a vote going on on my thread so please pop over I might put out cookies :)

Jan 8, 7:30pm Top

>74 BBGirl55: I think the older series aren't as exciting, meaning as action-packed, as the reboot's episodes are. But I'm also left chuckling by the level of tech, it's true.

I noticed a dearth of cookie on your thread, so I brought jammy dodgers:

Jan 8, 8:30pm Top

Have I not stopped in today? Bad Katie. Hope you enjoy the rising temps - however long it lasts!

Jan 8, 8:33pm Top

Long enough for me to get to the library before my holds expire. Good 'nuff.

I still can't quite fathom that it's my second thread!

Jan 8, 8:36pm Top

Hi Richard, happy almost-over Monday and slightly warmer temperatures coming!

Jan 8, 8:40pm Top

Above 29° works for me, Mary, and I'll bet your lot will be dancing about starkers for the joy of summery weather's return.

Jan 8, 8:46pm Top

>79 richardderus: today was relatively balmy in the 20s and after waking up to -12 and a dead car battery on Sunday, I'll definitely take it ;)

Jan 8, 9:31pm Top

Hi Richard. One of my favorite David Tennant roles was in The Escape Artist, a three episode mini (mini) series on PBS a few years ago. And of course on Broadchurch

Jan 9, 8:52am Top

>80 bell7: It's already 30° here!! I'm not sure how to act.

>81 brenzi: I didn't see The Escape Artist, Bonnie, but I enjoy Broadchurch quite a bit. I also liked Tennant in the miniseries made from Alan Furst's book The Spies of Warsaw. The book was a solid entertainment, as you'd expect.

Jan 9, 10:26am Top

Morning, Richard. Going to 40F here today - which is good because I have to go out :)

Morning snack?

Jan 9, 10:31am Top

Hurray for warmer temps and a trip to the library for more BOOKS!

Jan 9, 10:45am Top

>83 katiekrug: Hey Katie, yes on the snack. 40° sounds paradisical doesn't it? No rain or snow, just warmer than icyfreezingcold. Yay!

>84 Berly: As many drop-offs as come-ins, to be sure, but a trip outside for the first time in DAYS!!

Jan 9, 10:55am Top

Good morning, RichardDear!

How's your blood pressure doing with Fire and Fury?

Jan 9, 10:56am Top

We're on a break. I'm seeing other books. *fume*

Jan 9, 11:01am Top

Hey, you may want to take a look at The Trouble with Reality, by NPR's Brooke Gladstone. It's a short, 50-page blast of thoughts on our current situation.

Jan 9, 11:13am Top

>88 drneutron: Thanks for the rec, Jim, I'll wishlist it. Seems like a subject of universal interest just now.

Jan 9, 11:18am Top

Good morning, Richard!

It's 1933 and Hitler is elected. Things are getting real for Dietrich.

>74 BBGirl55: That was the Second Doctor, right BBGirl55. I like what I've seen of him which isn't that much, sadly.

Jan 9, 11:36am Top

>90 brodiew2: It's 1934 and the Reichstag is smoldering. Sadly that means the country is going down far faster than we thought.

Jan 9, 11:46am Top

Yup. I had heard of Bonhoeffer before, but never engaged his story. It really is compelling, historically and theologically.

Jan 9, 12:03pm Top

I have the greatest admiration for a man with such a powerful conscience.

Bonhoeffer: Agent of Grace was a compelling presentation of his story. I admire his absolute opposition to what he saw, correctly, as the evil around him. I wouldn't have wanted to live in *his* paradise, though. More a case of "the enemy of my enemy is my fair-weather friend."

Jan 9, 12:10pm Top

I was thinking of you, Richard, as I was listening to a fascinating discussion of octopuses on NPR, on the show 1A. I'm not a podcast girl so can't tell you how to listen to it, but here's the link to the web page: 1A Octopuses


Edited: Jan 9, 2:37pm Top

>87 richardderus: "We're on a break. I'm seeing other books. *fume*" I can completely understand. Small doses is more than enough. I am starting to lean away from this one. Preserve my sanity and stomach lining.

Happy Tuesday, RD. I hope you are having a good day with the books.

Jan 9, 3:44pm Top

>2 richardderus: Okay, I looked at the first picture and was all "Aaaaaah, a nice painting with dogs on it!" and then I got to the SECOND picture and was like, "Aaaaaaah, a nice painting that looks really quite remarkably like Sam Heughan's naked butt in Outlander."

The moral of this story is: read the captions. And I am way too familiar with Sam Heughan's naked butt in Outlander.

Skim reading the rest and then dropping into an armchair right HERE with the hope of keeping up now. :D

Jan 9, 4:08pm Top

Just a quick hello Rdear.

Jan 9, 4:11pm Top

>96 elliepotten: Heh, yep I'd say all of that's accurate, Ellie. I'm so glad that Outlander understands their audience well enough to display Heughan's callipygian assets without fanfare or emphasis, either of which would be fatal.

>97 Ameise1: Hi Barbara, I'm so happy to have a visit from you.

Jan 9, 4:13pm Top

>87 richardderus: Snarf! I'm feeling much the same about the interminable Last of the Mohicans...

Jan 9, 4:17pm Top

>94 karenmarie: I loved that podcast, so thanks ever so for bringing it to my attention! *smooch*

>95 msf59: Mark my old, I strongly recommend a wide berth until calmer waters are achieved. I was literally sobbing at one point, demanding of all those useless gods what the ACTUAL FUCK they were playing at making this the reality we're subjected to.

Jan 9, 4:49pm Top

Sometimes it's better to not look too closely at the catastrophe when you are living in it. Hope the other books are being more kind, Richard.

Jan 9, 4:51pm Top

>90 brodiew2: Yep the second Doctor he is. Sadly a lot of his serials are missing from the BBC arcive.

Richard I'm so sorry for the lack of cookies on my thread here have these:

Jan 9, 5:01pm Top

>101 Familyhistorian: Hey there Meg! I'm thoroughly enjoying the Robert Fitzgerald translation of The Odyssey, liking God Stalk, and looking for something short and funny to distract me from the Bad Feels.

>102 BBGirl55: *nomnomnom*
All is forgiven.

You know about the 97 lost episodes, right? Almost all Troughtons, I believe.

Jan 9, 5:13pm Top

>103 richardderus: I'm very aware of the missing content but all 'missing stories' have surviving audio and a few of the stories have been animated so gaps are easer and easer to fill. They find 'lost' episodes all the time. and one day they will find Evil of the Daleks and my life will be complete.

Jan 9, 5:19pm Top

It's amazing to me that Whovians have always been so very retentive and acquisitive in their pursuit of the Doctor and his stories. All those audio recordings of stories out there! Amazing.

Jan 9, 5:48pm Top

Those Audio recording cost a arm and a leg though.

Jan 9, 6:00pm Top

I can only imagine. After all, they're unique records of otherwise lost broadcasts!

Jan 9, 6:19pm Top

I've found a few DW audios in my library system, but I'm no completest.

Jan 9, 6:21pm Top

>108 brodiew2: I'm utterly unable to ear read. I process little of what I'm told and retain less. One big reason I failed utterly at school, the lectures made me want to stab my eyes with knitting needles.

Jan 9, 6:56pm Top

I totally get it, Richard. It works for me, but no doubt the retention level is small. Like audio popcorn.

Jan 9, 7:03pm Top

Popcorn ear reading...it has a ring, doesn't it?

Jan 9, 10:47pm Top

>109 richardderus: I too find "ear-reading" difficult. With me it seems to be a problem of attention. I'll suddenly have no idea who's talking, what they're talking about, or how long they've been talking. This happens to me in print too, but at least there I can skim back to a spot I recognize. No way to do that with an audiobook.

Jan 10, 8:46am Top

>112 swynn: I have all of those symptoms as well, Steve, but my most-common problem is, "Why are you talking at me? Did I ask?"

Amazing how much time I have to read as a result of saying that out loud.

Jan 10, 8:59am Top

Good morning, Richard Dear. Wow! You are going to get above freezing today. Has any of the nastiness melted away?

Jan 10, 9:01am Top

Morning Richard. There was a problem with the vote on my thread. There was a tie. Please go vote again :)

Jan 10, 9:05am Top

>114 karenmarie: Almost 40° today! I can't quite make myself believe it. The slush is slushy but it's not ice so I'm happy.

I do have to go out in it briefly but that's at least doable.

>115 BBGirl55: K

Jan 10, 9:12am Top

I found my next french press:

Jan 10, 9:12am Top

Glazed lemon blueberry scones.

Morning, BigDaddy!

Jan 10, 9:18am Top

>118 Crazymamie: Yum!

Morning, RD!

Jan 10, 9:19am Top

Coffee! Scones!! Wake me in an hour!

Jan 10, 9:26am Top

>118 Crazymamie: Oh yes indeed! That's exactly the ticket.

>119 jnwelch: Hi Joe, what's new?

>120 SomeGuyInVirginia: ...from the sugar coma...? :)

Edited: Jan 10, 9:47am Top

>116 richardderus: Stay safe and warm, RD, as you make your way around outside. *smooch*

>118 Crazymamie: *whimper* Glazed lemon blueberry scones. I'm on my second cup of coffee, but would gladly make a new pot if I had some of those. Thank GOD I don't have heavy cream or whole milk in the house, otherwise I'd be making them right now.

Jan 10, 1:55pm Top

I experimented with a coffee 'bag' today - like a tea bag, but coffee - in this case decaff (I'd already had two normal ones). Have you come across them? Weird things... quite nice though I have to say.

Jan 10, 2:01pm Top

>122 karenmarie: Safe and warm I was! It was 34° when I ventured outside, got to the library and was all done in 5min, then the cleaners for my big comforter. Worked up quite a sweat!

Lemon blueberry scones *Homerdrool* FTW no matter what. I adore them. Oh, and Mamie of course, since she brought them. *tiny pointed stare*

>123 BekkaJo: EW!!!

No no nononononononono!! I canot fathom such such disrespect nay BLASPHEMY against the Sacred Bean! Proper brewing only, and DEATH BEFORE DECAF!

Jan 10, 2:22pm Top

"No no nononononononono!! I canot fathom such such disrespect nay BLASPHEMY against the Sacred Bean! Proper brewing only, and DEATH BEFORE DECAF!"

Jan 10, 2:31pm Top

Hello Richard! I'm glad to hear things are 'warming' up for you.

>124 richardderus: I'm with you, no decaf, Dude!

Jan 10, 2:39pm Top

>125 Crazymamie: *smooch*

>126 brodiew2: Hey, "warming" is relative and I couldn't be happier not to be in the Arctic wind tunnel anymore. Such a relief.

Decaf. Faugh.

Jan 10, 3:59pm Top

mrsdrneutron is caffeine challenged. A cuppa coffee kicks her into Hammy-the-Squirrel mode. So she's only allowed decaf. But I refuse to drink it, so it looked like a divorce would be necessary. So we got two pots to save our marriage... 😁

Jan 10, 5:16pm Top

I miss caffeine...

Jan 10, 6:02pm Top

>121 richardderus: "Hi Joe, what's new?" Just got back from Kalamazoo. ("whaddya know" gets a Kokomo answer).

Jan 10, 6:43pm Top

Belated happy new thread, Richard dear.

I love your topper!

Jan 10, 6:49pm Top

Hi, RD! Hooray for 40F! It hit the mid-40s here, but it was still damp and chilly, so couldn't appreciate it as much as I hoped, but it sure beats zero.

BTW- I really enjoyed What It Means When a Man Falls from the Sky. What a strong voice and she got quite experimental as the collection went on. Very impressive.

Edited: Jan 10, 7:21pm Top

>130 jnwelch: Couldn't help jumping on the Kalamzoo line, Joe.

The Nicholas Brothers dance routine for 'The Girl From Kalamazoo' is brilliant.

video at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t521jxF8tyc

Sorry for the co-opt, Richard. You may well enjoy it, too.

Jan 11, 1:18am Top

Sweet Thursday, Rdear.

Jan 11, 3:39am Top

>124 richardderus: *in high pitched panicky tones* It was only once! I was only experimenting. Everyone experiments sometimes... I'm sorry! I'll never do it again!

Actually I do have the occasional decaff, but it is occasional. And always because I've already had my two cups a day.

>128 drneutron: Hubby has had to give up coffee cos it gives him a bad stomach - he doesn't mind most of the time but occasionally he'll just get his glare on when I'm having a cup :)

Jan 11, 9:28am Top

I didn't think decaff was an actual thing?

Jan 11, 9:30am Top

>128 drneutron: I feel sorry for her. That's just torture on the goddesses' part. Imagine denying innocent mrsdrneutron her place in the Fields of Elysium simply because she cannot exhale the Breath of Coffeelife into Pomona's face. *tsk*

>129 BBGirl55: Dear, dear! Why miss it? Just drink coffee. It's legally available there, I think, although I understand that "tea" (more properly called "Chinese garden waste") is more prevalent.

Jan 11, 9:32am Top

>130 jnwelch:, >133 brodiew2: Ha! I love the Nicholas Brothers. That's a good routine.

>131 FAMeulstee: Thanks, Anita. I love finding new-to-me artists and Susana Mata wasn't a familiar name.

Jan 11, 9:43am Top

>132 msf59: Happy you liked Arimah's story collection! I was blown away by it. I think she's a talent to watch.

It's already 42° here and that bodes well for 50° today...wow...such a huge huge change.

>134 Ameise1: Good day, Barbara my dear, I hope you're enjoying this happy season!

>135 BekkaJo: *pointed stare over glasses* Young woman. See that you confine your experimental urges to safe, sane areas like marital infidelity and heroin usage. Faffing about with *shudder* coffee sachets will only lead to heartbreak and regret.


Jan 11, 9:44am Top

>136 SomeGuyInVirginia: Appallingly enough, Larry, it's a thing. Sort of like how sparkly vampires are a thing.

We needn't think about either of them, being too old by half to care about the bizarre need for novelty they represent.

Jan 11, 11:28am Top

6 Bitter Grounds by Neil Gaiman

Rating: 4.5* of five

I forgot to post this! Best short fiction by Gaiman that I've ever read. I loved it.

“I was never afraid of dead folk. You know that? They never hurt you. So many things in this town can hurt you, but the dead don’t hurt you. Living people hurt you. They hurt you so bad.”

Perfect. Perfect cadence, perfect sound, perfect effect. Takes a half-hour to read but will probably stick with you long, long after that.

Now nobody try to tell me I don't challenge my own prejudices. I dislike Gaiman's novels because they lack endings and are often guilty of bloviation. This piece is *perfect* or as close to it as I've seen from Mr. G's pen.

Jan 11, 11:35am Top

Good morning, Richard!

Jan 11, 11:36am Top

Happy almost-noontide, Brodie!

Edited: Jan 11, 11:57am Top

Ah, you Easterners. Always ahead of the game.

I'm well past the burning of the Reichstag. Given Bonhoeffer's open defiance of the heresies of The German Evangelical Church, I'm surprised he wasn't killed by the Nazis for another 12 years. I guess they had bigger fish to fry.

The matters of Church doctrine which were sparked by National Socialism co opting the church and the ensuing fight are fascinating.

Jan 11, 11:53am Top

>144 brodiew2: I'm very not up on the heresies of any modern church so the significance passes me by. I do know that the fact the Nazis only hanged the man in 1945 makes his relative unimportance to them obvious...except I suspect they were also a bit scared of his mouth so they needed to silence him before the Allies got hold of him.

Edited: Jan 11, 11:57am Top

I think, ultimately, it had something to do with his involvement in the 1944 plot to kill Hitler, though I am not aware of the details...yet.

Jan 11, 11:59am Top

I believe, if memory serves, that this facet of the story is controversial. I'm not sure of details but am hoping you'll let me know.

Edited: Jan 11, 4:29pm Top

Good morning, Richard Dear!

>128 drneutron: Different reason, Jim, but there are two coffee pots in our house. Husband likes his milder (read: weaker) coffee than I do and compromise is out on this one. I went on a decaf binge (well, if you consider 40 years a binge) and only returned to the caffeinated fold about 2 years ago.

Chinese garden waste. You are irrepressible, RD, indeed you are.

CGW is good for when I'm sick and coffee just sounds too ... oily. CGW with copious amounts of sugar, strongly brewed.

Jan 11, 12:03pm Top

>118 Crazymamie: SCONES! *swoons happily*
I miss scones in my life! Must learn how to bake them. I tried and failed in the past.

>141 richardderus: Best short fiction, half-hour read - booked! :)

Erm... I drink it only very rarely, maybe 1-2 times a year when I had too many real ones already, and the decaff here is brewed normally like an espresso and doesn't come in sachets and... okay, I promise next time I'll have tea when my stomach is upset.

Edited: Jan 11, 12:05pm Top

>148 karenmarie: I am steadfast in my refusal to consider sugar as acceptable in my hot beverages. Blech.

And tea? No.

Tisanes are okay, particularly mint ones when I have an upset tum. Chamomile is pleasant enough in a coffeeless household when drinking something is de rigueur.

>149 Deern: Soul sister! Avoid that Caffe Hag like it has disease germs!

Jan 11, 12:10pm Top

I mostly have thin tisanes as my main drink as "just water" is a bit boring - about 2 litres a day or (that might make you shudder) hot water with ginger which I love. In German, tisanes are also "tea" (Tee), I always forget it's different expressions in other languages.

I also love real black or green tea, brewed well with loose leaves and two pots, but that takes time - and it's more aggressive to my stomach than coffee.
No sugar or milk in anything.

Jan 11, 12:20pm Top

I'm a big water drinker, one two-liter pitcher of filtered water per day minimum. It helps control my gout problem. Uric acid flushed out of my system = good!

Tisane is one word for the non-teas, though quite a lot of the US market calls them "herbal tea" which is nonsense since all tea is herbal. Camellia bushes are, in the botanical sense, herbs. Nasty stuff.

I'll use milk in morning coffee but not after that. I just don't care for most sugary drinks, even juice isn't a daily consumption item for me. Too sweet.

Jan 11, 12:46pm Top

I accidentally bought decaf once and neither Nathen or I noticed until day four of his migraine. I was in the dog house for quite a while. He still thinks I did it on purpose to be funny but I need the caffeine too so I would never :)

Edited: Jan 11, 1:00pm Top

Ladies and Gentlemen - the Glenn Miller Orchestra featuring the Modernaires

Remember John Foyscythe singing this in the Alfred Hitchcock Movies "The Trouble with Harry"?

I got a Gal in Kalamazoo

Edited: Jan 11, 1:13pm Top

>154 magicians_nephew: That's the one!

Edit: Isn't the Caesar Romero conducting?

Jan 11, 1:14pm Top

>153 ChelleBearss: I am so pleased to hear that you're not guilty of spousal abuse. That'd be just flat unforgivable!

>154 magicians_nephew:, >155 brodiew2: I just watched that film again recently! It was astonishing to see little teensy wide-eyed Shirley MacLaine in her film debut. I really enjoyed it.

Jan 11, 2:10pm Top

>156 richardderus: one of the "Lost Hitchcocks" that was not shown for years and one of my favorite films

Jan 11, 3:20pm Top

7 Baking With Kafka by Tom Gauld

Rating: 5* of five

You're welcome. Now go buy one.

Jan 11, 3:36pm Top

>158 richardderus: - I am #41 out of 56 holds with only 6 copies circulating in my library system. Looking forward to it

Jan 11, 3:40pm Top

>159 jessibud2: I suspect you'll want to own one once it's in your hands, Shelley. I did that after reading You're All Just Jealous of My Jetpack so I gave up and bought one of these.

Jan 11, 4:25pm Top

Hi Richard, just touching base to say hello as I have been remiss in visiting threads so far this year, I hope this finds you well dear friend and send love and hugs from both of us.

Jan 11, 4:27pm Top

Hi John! It's a full-time job keeping up with the threads, isn't it. I don't think most can hope to be on top of visits unless they're retired! Lucky me. I've got time I can spend how I like instead of having to work for a living anymore.

Jan 11, 5:45pm Top

>162 richardderus: I have all the time to myself, Richard, but keeping up with the threads is starting to interfere with reading time...

Jan 11, 5:50pm Top

>163 FAMeulstee: Ah ha...yes, that does present a problem. I make up for it by ignoring my roommate and limiting my boyfriend time.

Jan 11, 5:52pm Top

>164 richardderus: LOL!
Frank is working tonight and tomorrow night, so I might get some more reading done. Limiting boyfriend time is no option for me ;-)

Jan 11, 6:01pm Top

>158 richardderus: This looks awesome. Thanks for posting about it.

Edited: Jan 11, 6:05pm Top

>165 FAMeulstee: Limiting boyfriend time is no option for me ;-)

...much to Frank's relief, I'm sure...

>166 Oberon: It IS awesome, Erik, please run and get one ASAP!

Jan 11, 6:21pm Top

Looks around nervously hoping no one notices I've only read one Gaiman and had little success with his other works.

Jan 11, 6:38pm Top

>137 richardderus: I'm unfortunatly alergic to caffine and a couple of other stimulants. So no coffee or tea unless it is decaf. No cola in any flavor unless it is decaf. No Dr. Pepper, no red bull... the list gos on. I have to be carful with how much chocolate I eat and avoind medicences with caffine... it royaly sucks.

Jan 11, 7:32pm Top

>168 brodiew2: You're safe here, Brodie. I've disliked all but three things I've read in the Gaiman ouevre, which is why I sound so surprised in my review of Bitter Grounds. He sucks at endings.

>169 BBGirl55: My dear, my dear, my heart bleeds for you! I'm so sad to hear of this. It would make my life a living hell to have to restrict caffeine intake. *smooch*

Jan 11, 9:30pm Top

I'm done with chapter 8 of God Stalk, so I can ask my questions tomorrow in the group read thread.

What a strange experience this is. The book's loaded down with cats, but they don't play much of a part in the proceedings. In fact most characters don't play much part in the proceedings. I'm accustomed to the much more bloated modern fantasy novels. The author does damn near none of the padding I'm expecting.

Jan 11, 9:53pm Top

>158 richardderus: Huh. Short review, but I get the message ;)

Jan 11, 10:06pm Top

>172 LovingLit: One tries one's best to stay out of the way of something that sells itself. *smooch*

Edited: Jan 11, 10:30pm Top

Hooray for Baking With Kafka! 5 stars, sounds about right.

Hope you had a good day, sir!

Edited: Jan 11, 10:35pm Top

>133 brodiew2:, >138 richardderus: Agreed, Richard and Brodie. Thanks for the Nicholas Brothers link, Brodie. I love the old long camera shots, with very few cuts. How they do those high velocity splits is beyond me.

P.S. I loved Baking with Kafka, too. Great to see you give it 5 stars.

Jan 11, 11:12pm Top

>174 msf59: Hey Mark! It was a pleasant day, an hour with the YGC this evening, more of the book about 45 until my eyes popped out of my skull, blah blah blah.

>175 jnwelch: Gauld FTW!

Jan 12, 12:45am Top

I know I'm weird - I cannot stand the flavor of coffee. Not even coffee ice cream, so the usual suggestion of "just add more milk and sugar and you'll get used to it" doesn't work. I can take or leave caffeine, but when I want a hot drink it's usually tea (or hot chocolate, but that's really in another category). And I'll drink tea every possible way - milk and sweetener (honey, if I can get it, rather than sugar), just milk, just honey, or black. Honey in very dark-brewed black tea is my medicine of choice for a sore throat or general cold symptoms. But I won't, given any choice in the matter, drink flavored tea - peach, hibiscus, Earl Grey, ick. Black tea, or rooibos (which is a tisane), or honeybush (which is also a tisane and is to rooibos as green tea is to black). I don't like green tea, mostly because it's impossible to brew it strong - long brewing makes bitter water, proper brewing makes almost unflavored water. Honeybush tastes a lot better, though it's still pretty mild.

But even my strong-brewed black teas don't have enough caffeine to really have any effect. The only time I've had a caffeine headache is when I've been sore for a while (for whatever reason) and have been taking Bayer Back & Body - aspirin and caffeine - for several days, then stop. I have to taper off (and drink tea) to avoid the headache. And I've never noticed any direct effect from caffeine, only the withdrawal.

Jan 12, 2:21am Top

>158 richardderus: Awesome. Particularly like the REVOLUTION one and the poor sweet Dear Departed Books. I've lost one or two of those myself. *intones mournfully*

Jan 12, 2:28am Top

>177 jjmcgaffey: I am so sorry to hear that.

Jan 12, 4:42am Top

>139 richardderus: Snarf!

>158 richardderus: Oh shoot! BB to me. I bought You're just jealous of my jetpack for hubby for Xmas and have just finished it myself. It is brilliant :)

Jan 12, 5:18am Top

>158 richardderus: Loved this one despite reading it on Kindle, and am now very slow-savoring the Jetpack one as paper copy, I don't want it to finish before another one is out. :)

Jan 12, 9:15am Top

>158 richardderus: Baking with Kafka! Gotta get it!
:( Libraries of the Future - Ack ack ack - I will sign a petition to halt that from every happening.

Jan 12, 9:42am Top

>177 jjmcgaffey: It's always down to personal taste. I loathe the flavor of all forms of tea, the camellia-bush kind, and most tisanes. I'll drink them to be polite but will never ask for them. So I totally understand your position.

>178 elliepotten: I could sing a requiem a day for my lost loves. I stay happier by making sure I don't loan books, I gift them.

Jan 12, 9:44am Top

>179 LovingLit: It's always sad when someone doesn't share one's abundant joy in something as delicious and perfect as coffee, isn't it?

>180 BekkaJo: Heh. I will ensnare as many biblioflies in my honeytome pot as I can. *smooch*

Jan 12, 9:46am Top

>181 Deern: The wait is excruciating, isn't it? I hate that creativity on this level can't be hurried. Faster, faster, faster! And never let me down!! No wonder artists suffer burnout.

>182 Carmenere: Heh, I see what you did there. :)

Jan 12, 10:02am Top

Good morning, RD!

Have a loverly day. *smooches* from Madame TVT Horrible

Jan 12, 10:05am Top

Hiya Horrible! I'm having my 64th ounce of coffee. It's going to be a fine, fine day.

Jan 12, 10:17am Top

Jan 12, 4:26pm Top

>188 richardderus: Glad that at least elephants think humans are cute... as most of us are not at all.

Jan 12, 4:50pm Top

h>141 richardderus: Gonna have to hunt that one down.

I seventh in line at the library for Baking With Kafka Love what you shared.

Jan 12, 6:48pm Top

"I'm having my 64th ounce of coffee. It's going to be a fine, fine day." Good plan, RD.

It was wickedly windy here in the Midwest. Chilled to the bone. I even got a coffee fill up, about one thirty, which I rarely do.

Jan 12, 8:25pm Top

8 411 by Ray Hecht

Rating: 3* of five

Like listening in on Steve Bannon's internal monologue. I feel a little queasy, a lot filthy, and not entirely pleased.

Jan 12, 8:31pm Top

>190 SuziQoregon: Hey Juli! It's free on Tor.com if you can screen read comfortably.

Enjoy the Gauld!

>191 msf59: It was so foggy here I couldn't see my hand in front of my face when I had to go outside. It was nasty!

Jan 12, 10:12pm Top

And he's at it again...Richard, I can't keep up!! LOL Happy weekend. Hope the fog lifts...

Jan 13, 4:02am Top

>188 richardderus: LOOK THAT LITTLE FACE THOUGH. Baby elephants are the adorablest.

Jan 13, 8:09am Top

>188 richardderus: That is just lovely :)

My daughter is doing a school project on Sloths - so I'm up to my eyeballs in baby sloths in bucket pictures...

Jan 13, 8:14am Top

Jan 13, 8:49am Top

Good morning, RD!

>188 richardderus: I'm glad they think we're cute. I think they're cute, too.


Jan 13, 12:29pm Top

>194 Berly: Hey there Kimmers, hope granted. It's not foggy, just cloudy and that's fine by me. *smooch*

>195 elliepotten: Aren't they? Sweet little punkinblossoms. And that appears to be how we appear to the mother elephants, like sweet little punkinblossoms.

>196 BekkaJo: Sloths! EEEK

Jan 13, 12:31pm Top

>197 ChelleBearss: I know, right?!

>198 karenmarie: Hey there, Horrible dear. Hoping you're all snug as a bug in a rug today.

Edited: Jan 13, 12:36pm Top

Woo, wet sloths are utterly terrifying. I'd never seen one looking like that.

They may be best enjoyed in their fluffy state:

Jan 13, 12:43pm Top

>201 jnwelch: I completely agree. I'm not quite able to shake the terrifying part of the image, though, so sloths are off my cuddly-critter list for good. *shudder*

Happier thoughts! Looka here:

Jan 13, 12:56pm Top

>202 richardderus: - Love this!!!

Jan 13, 1:37pm Top

Jan 13, 1:57pm Top

>203 jessibud2:, >204 jnwelch: Isn't that spectacular?! A Twitter friend posted it.

Jan 13, 4:43pm Top

>202 richardderus: Beautiful, Richard!

If anyone else, beside me, wondered: the artist is Vladimir Kush, title "Diary of Discoveries"

Jan 13, 4:58pm Top

>206 FAMeulstee: - Thanks, Anita. I did wonder! :-)

Jan 13, 5:04pm Top

Just stopping by to say hello. I can't keep up at all!

I do need to go and check out what David Tennant has been up to!

Jan 13, 5:08pm Top

8 My Brother's Husband by Gengoroh Tagame

Rating: 3.5* of five

The BookRiot Read Harder prompt inspired me to pick this tree-book manga up. Reading GNs on my tablet *sucked* so I won't be doing that again.

Reading the manga way is weird for Westerners, or at any rate old ones like me. Back to front, right to left...and add in the graphic parts! Well, it was a read outside my comfort zone. The more alert among you will have noticed a favorable star rating atop the review's text. I liked the story of a man's journey from unquestioning homophobia to questioning discomfort through to earnest effort to understand and integrate The Other into his world. I wasn't comfortable with the format and I'm not a bit convinced that the story couldn't have been told another way, but the story itself is a good and timely one for 45's America as well as for Japan at any time.

I most certainly will not buy the book for $25 but checked out of the library it's a well-spent afternoon. I'd say graphically oriented consumers would do well to visit Yaichi, Kana, and Uncle Mike. They are good company and the world they find themselves working to understand and create is one I'd say is very, very important for us all to visit. Who knows, y'all might wanna set a spell.

Jan 13, 5:16pm Top

>206 FAMeulstee: Thanks, Anita! *smooch*

>207 jessibud2: Ain't she a gem, Shelley?

>208 sibyx: He's going to be in the miniseries adaptation of Good Omens when it comes out...just now he's a character on Jessica Jones, one of those ubiquitous Marvel superhero shows. Other than that, he's well worth watching in Broadchurch, if you're not already doing so.

Jan 13, 6:28pm Top

>199 richardderus: Gawdamighty, that looks like a giant, wet, smiling spider.

Jan 13, 6:31pm Top

>211 SomeGuyInVirginia: ...with FUR!!! eeewww

Jan 13, 6:49pm Top

I was 90 posts behind. Do I need an Executive Summary of what I missed, or can I start fresh with a clear conscience?

Jan 13, 6:51pm Top

Read >209 richardderus: and begin from there with impunity.

Jan 13, 6:59pm Top

Okay, done!


Jan 13, 7:08pm Top


Jan 13, 7:14pm Top

>158 richardderus: I find that I must now own this book. Darn you, RD!!

Jan 13, 7:17pm Top

>217 alcottacre: *boopboopblattbeepboop*

Hello, Drawn & Quarterly? Commissions department, please...

I live to serve, dear Stasia. *smooch*

Edited: Jan 13, 7:18pm Top

>218 richardderus: A reluctant *smooch* back at you :)

Jan 13, 7:23pm Top

>141 richardderus: I'll keep that in mind when I decide to give Gaiman a go.

>170 richardderus: I'm with you on the caffeine. I'll drink decaf tea, but I want my coffee with caffeine. I can't stand the taste of decaf. I can tell the caffeine is missing, even when I'm not told it's decaf. I do like a few non-caffeinated things like Sprite, root beer, and Cheerwine, but most of the time I want plain Coke.

Jan 13, 7:32pm Top

>219 alcottacre: :)

>220 thornton37814: I'm not a cola drinker, or in fact much of a soft drinker. I wasn't raised on the things, they were rare treats we got when we went to get Top Notch's bacon jalapeño cheeseburgers.

My mother drank instant tea. I regard it with the same shuddering loathing that I regard instant coffee. Caffeinelessness merely adds a barely suppressed retch to the proceedings.

Jan 14, 11:10am Top

Morning, RDear. Given your liking for Gaiman's short story, you might consider picking up Trigger Warning, a collection of his short stories.

I have to admit I drink nothing with caffeine in it. Black tea keeps me awake for ages and the last time I had cola I felt my heart rate accelerate in an unpleasant fashion. All tisanes around these parts.

Jan 14, 11:28am Top

Hi Micky! I'm still shell-shocked at having *liked* a Gaiman so I'm going to let the reality settle in before I test my reactions further. I've noted the title.

It's an awful, awful thing to learn of a friend's dreadful disability. I'm so sorry that you're condemned by biological mischance to a life of *shudder* tisanes. *there there, pat pat*

Jan 14, 11:54am Top

Jeeze, my first cup of coffee is a No-Doze. I go off caffeine periodically just to dry out, but it never seems like a good idea after a few months.

Jan 14, 12:11pm Top

Heh, No-Doze has boatloads more caffeine than coffee but it doesn't taste anything like as good. I've decaffeinated several times as well. It never takes.

Happy Sunday, Larry.

Jan 14, 12:16pm Top

Great gods, liked a Gaiman and a manga. Is the end of days upon us?

Jan 14, 12:22pm Top

I'm assuming so, Joe, after the Hawaiian incident. I just know somehow it's all 45's fault.

Jan 14, 12:55pm Top

>227 richardderus: I just can't believe that happened. That must have been horrific.

Jan 14, 1:13pm Top

Especially chilling to me is the little tag at the end of the text: "This is not a drill."

I would've died of fright.

Jan 14, 1:24pm Top

Good afternoon, RD!

Well I was going to post a youtube video of baby sloths making cute noises to offset the horrible WET SLOTHS visual in >199 richardderus: above, but it's too frivolous compared to the utter terror of what Hawaiians had to go through because of a wrong button pushed.

Jan 14, 1:28pm Top

>230 karenmarie: RA-MEN Sister Woman. I still can't believe how few deaths there actually were directly related to this, though I suppose the suicides are going to be hushed up.

Jan 14, 1:40pm Top

How could I not star a thread of someone who talks about Doctor Who (my favorite show since the mid-80s, well, until BBC Sherlock) and doesn't particularly like Neil Gaiman?

Funny story (at least to me) - when my husband and I first dated, I drank quite a bit of coffee (and tea) and he hated the taste of coffee. We got into an argument (okay, we were both a little drunk) one evening at a party because I wanted him to try a coffee with Kahlua and whipped cream and he absolutely refused. Months later, while I worked on Saturday mornings, he could be found a Caribou Cafe
(pre-Starbucks) drinking, gasp, coffee. Fast forward years later and he can't leave the house without his morning coffee, while I have switched to tea almost completely.

Jan 14, 1:43pm Top

>229 richardderus: I can't believe it took someone so long to actually retract the alert. And yes, I'm sure in some way 45 had something to do with it.

Jan 14, 1:47pm Top

>227 richardderus: - You know, that was my first thought! How awful is that.

I listened to a really interesting interview this morning with Adam Gopnik, about trump, and will put the link on my thread. It's hard to imagine things get any lower than this week, but with this one, it's just a bottomless bottom, isn't it

Jan 14, 2:36pm Top

>232 rretzler: ...switched to tea...oh dear, I'm sorry to learn of the awful, life-threatening injury to your central nervous system! My best wishes for a speedy recovery and return to the Sacred Bean Sect.

>233 rretzler: That is an unconscionable part of an appalling incident, for sure and certain.

>234 jessibud2: Awful? Or merely realistic? The truth is that, absent 45 and Lil' Rocket Man's mutually assured idiocy, the text would've raised eyebrows and prompted some calls to make *sure* it was an error instead of panic and chaos like it did.

Jan 14, 3:49pm Top

It's a particularly heinous betrayal of the public's trust. And to try and dismiss it by saying 'we goofed, pushed a wrong button, our bad' just ticks me off.

Someone needs to be punched in the throat. Grrr.

Jan 14, 6:07pm Top

>199 richardderus: ARRRRGHHHGHGH!

>201 jnwelch: *Phew*
My faith in the sloth is restored :)

Jan 14, 7:01pm Top

>229 richardderus: My landlord's daughter woke up to that message on her phone, and yeah, there was a bit of a scary wait 'til the "it was a mistake" was sounded.

From one of the previous messages - instant...tea? This is a thing?

Edited: Jan 14, 8:10pm Top

Yes. Yech. Like instant coffee, it's a powder you stir into hot water and it's supposed to taste like the real thing. Not.

It used to be a cheapo substitute, but there are now "gourmet" versions which almost taste like watery tea. Aside from mostly tasting like fruit and flowers, at least - I haven't found any that weren't flavored (I always try it out when I find samples, mostly out of curiosity. Haven't actually bought any).

Jan 14, 9:30pm Top

>229 richardderus:. I wonder if they even told Trump about it. He didn’t bother to leave the golf course.

Instant tea? Ugh

Jan 15, 4:27am Top

Wet sloths and horrific false emergency alerts.

I'm going off to live in the woods :(

Jan 15, 7:37am Top

Good morning, Richard Dear!

Believe it or not, but I didn't think of suicides. I did think of heart attacks and strokes and premature labor.

And for drumpf to not even leave the golf course is absolutely disgusting. If he knew about it, bad cess to him, if he didn't know about it, he's overprotected.

Jan 15, 9:05am Top

>236 SomeGuyInVirginia: I'll hold her while you punch her.

>237 LovingLit: Sloths are creepy. Creepy, I say!

Jan 15, 9:12am Top

>238 bell7:, >239 jjmcgaffey:, >240 brenzi: "Thing" in its most pejorative sense, yes. A "thing" the way the Chernobyl reactor is a thing, the way intestinal parasites are things.

I had no idea they were still playing around with instant tea as a product fit for human consumption. *gag* I will be surprised if purchasing it ever becomes a good option for those who like tea at all.

>240 brenzi: Why would anyone sane tell 45 about something where his insanity could potentially cause worldwide devastation? I'm grateful that no one told him!! Reading Fire and Fury has taught me to be *very*grateful* for the efforts of the modestly sane people around him to keep this train from being a complete runaway.

Jan 15, 9:15am Top

>241 BekkaJo: Remember the woods of Jersey still have unexploded ordnance and land mines from WWII.

Juuuuust sayin'

>242 karenmarie: And I never gave an instant's thought to the stress deaths!

Better 45 stays on the golf course out of reach of any telephone or pushable button while the adults in the room handle the problem.

Jan 15, 9:25am Top

Breakfast panini

Because we need fuel to face that Day Which Shall Not Be Named. Morning, BigDaddy!

Jan 15, 9:31am Top

>246 Crazymamie: Ooo aaah

A thing of beauty and a joy for the ~30sec it will take me to snarf it down. Blessings of Tomorrow upon thee!

And does the holiday today account for your general absence of irascibility today, dear?

Jan 15, 10:09am Top

>243 richardderus: Why, Richard, I'm shocked! I've never hit a woman in my life. I'll hold her.

Jan 15, 10:11am Top

^Morning, RD. I am going to enjoy the MLK holiday, mostly at home. I do have a massage scheduled for 11 and then back home with the books. I will have to shovel too, since we got about 4 inches dumped on us. Sighs...

I hope you had a good weekend.

Jan 15, 10:24am Top

Massage. I'm posting responses to action items from half a dozen meetings. Massage, he says...

Jan 15, 11:01am Top

>248 SomeGuyInVirginia: Time you learned, then. My hands won't form fists. Besides, I'm taller than you.

>249 msf59: Shovel before massage! Why waste all that lovely relaxation?

My weekend was dandy, thanks, the Young Gentleman Caller gave me permission to get a beard trim so long as I left it long. The barber just got finished with me and I feel 1000% better without hair in my ears from every imaginable direction.

>250 drneutron: Action items! Meetings! *bwaaahaaahaaa* Mere memories. Bad ones.
*traleelaleelaaaah*skips back to books in anticipation of cuddles from YGC later*

Jan 15, 11:06am Top

>245 richardderus: Nah - most of the unexploded stuff is on the beaches. The woods are safe. We don't have a lot of woods though... not sure I could hide successfully in them. For more than about a minute.

Plus it's raining.

Enjoy your visit anticipation :)

Jan 15, 11:15am Top

>252 BekkaJo: Hmm. I recall a Time Team on a stonking promontory with woods where they found some 88mm rounds that had to be blown up on a local beach.

He's texted that he's on the way so my mood is greatly elevated.

Jan 15, 6:24pm Top

>199 richardderus: No! Never. Nope.

>251 richardderus: Beard-trimmed and fabulous, eh? That deserves a big ol' smooch!! Tell your Young Gentleman Caller there's no need to be jealous though, 'cuz I am not your type. ; ) LOL.

And how did your grandson get to be so old when you are still only 35?

Jan 15, 7:18pm Top

>199 richardderus: It reminds me of something out of The Dark Crystal...of which I remember almost none of the storyline but lots of images of those muppets. Brr.

Jan 15, 7:39pm Top

>254 Berly: Apparently I *juuussst* squeaked through beard-length-wise, and was informed in No Uncertain Terms no further trims were needed for the foreseeable future. His stake in my beard appears to trump mine, but as he's the one I'm trying to please there's no complaint in that. Just slight confusion.

As to age, the answer involves higher dimensional calculus. Too hard to explain.

>255 jjmcgaffey: Oh dear yes, that's a ghastly visual memory indeed!!

Jan 15, 8:24pm Top

Hey, RD. If you don't mind I included a link to your review of What it Means When a Man, in my own mini-review. I figured if I couldn't hook 'em, you definitely would.

Edited: Jan 16, 3:45am Top

>243 richardderus: they are so not creepy, they are slow and calm and sometimes three-toed. I like them a lot :) :) :) (especially the one in Zootopia, "Flash Flash Hundred-yard Dash")

Jan 16, 6:29am Top

Good morning, Richard Dear!

Beards do grow, or so I've heard; but I'm glad you squeaked by with YGC.

And since we've veered away from nuclear war, here's the video about baby sloth squeaks that I wanted to post earlier in your thread: Baby Sloth Squeaks.

*smooches* from TVT Horrible

Jan 16, 8:09am Top

Good morning and happy coffeetime, Richard!
I finally remembered to check what a sloth is in my language, because neither the horrid >199 richardderus: nor the cute >201 jnwelch: pic helped. "Faultier" like "lazy animal". Okay... :)

Jan 16, 8:52am Top

>243 richardderus: They are just adorable! They always seem to be smiling and happy

>258 LovingLit: The Zootopia sloth is my favourite!

Jan 16, 10:07am Top

Good morning, Richard! Cold here in Dallas but the winter precipitation predicted never materialized (shocker), so I dragged myself into the office... *sigh*

Jan 16, 11:04am Top

>257 msf59: Hey there Mark, no need to wonder, I'm happy to have people discovering my review of Arimah's work. She's got a wonderful voice and I hope she gets increasing numbers of readers.

>258 LovingLit: mmm


uh huh

*quiet shudder*

>259 karenmarie: Happy days are here again, aren't they Horrible? We're not all dead or dying from radiation sickness, whoopee, we're just worrying about it because 45's a moron and was elected by the least and the last of our "citizens" plus a bunch of Russian hackers.

Jan 16, 11:13am Top

>260 Deern: A Faultier. It brings to my mind the English word for "more faulty, more flawed;" that is "faulty"+"ier" or "more, increasingly". Perfect. A sloth is a faultier animal, one more flawed than other animals!

>261 ChelleBearss: Blech. Bet you like guinea pigs and hamsters too, Chelle. The school of "they're so cute all busy and happy" transmogrifies in my brain into "dear gawd help the poor thing, it's trying to escape and it's screaming its frustration!"

>262 katiekrug: WOW! It is *very* cold in Dallas at 20°/-7C! They must be mummified in their wrappings.

Poor you, both Dallas *and* work. *there there, pat pat*

Jan 16, 11:45am Top

Hello there . . .

>202 richardderus: - Oh that's just lovely!

>210 richardderus: I've never read Good Omens but if David Tennant is going to be in the TV adaptation I might have to give it a try.

Nude Zombie Richard III With Dinosaurs

Sounds awesome

Jan 16, 11:50am Top

Hi Juli! I myownself am holding out for Nude Cowboy Romeo & Juliet on Mars.

Jan 16, 12:06pm Top

>261 ChelleBearss: Awwww!

Hi, Richard!

I loved Good Omens. As much as I admire Terry Pratchett, it's the only one of his (leavened with Gaiman) that's worked that well for me.

Jan 16, 12:15pm Top

>268 jnwelch: I liked Good Omens quite a bit, Joe, and I don't like either Gaiman or Pratchett's other books nearly so well as it.

Jan 16, 2:21pm Top

I get the stakes in beard length. I'm very particular about The Boyfriend's beard length and might pout every time he trims it too short. :P

Jan 16, 2:32pm Top

>270 MickyFine: Apparently a big part of my appeal to Rob is my ability to grow a long, tickly beard. Chacun à son goût.

Jan 16, 2:38pm Top

>264 richardderus: The school of "they're so cute all busy and happy" transmogrifies in my brain into "dear gawd help the poor thing, it's trying to escape and it's screaming its frustration!"
I have a general unease with things that are *too* happy.

>265 richardderus: Stalinist!!! Classic.

Jan 16, 2:38pm Top

Hello Richard!

I'm heading into the final fourth of Bonhoeffer. Poland is invaded and Dietrich returns to Berlin from America after determining that he never should have left. The horrors of the Nazis are in full swing as Britain declares war. Metaxas gives us ample detail about Hitler, the progressive war against the Jews, and the burgeoning conspiracy to remove Hitler from power. It is all so well presented through the lens of Bonhoeffer's struggle against the Reich's hijacking of of the German Evangelical Church and Christianity as a whole. Looks like he's headed to prison her pretty soon.

Jan 16, 2:47pm Top

>272 LovingLit: I contend that captive rodents are the opposite of happy.

Stalinist Kung-fu Othello on Wall Street.

>273 brodiew2: Oh dear, this is a case of knowing the ending ruining the pleasure of the book...however much I admire Bonhoeffer's courage, I can't help but give in to the urge to shout "DON'T DO IT!!" at the pages.

Jan 16, 3:02pm Top

Someone, can't remember who, was using Vick's VapoRub for something I wasn't familiar with. Then I found this:

Jan 16, 4:07pm Top

>271 richardderus: My preference is for it to be just long enough to be soft but not so long it gets in the way of... lip sports. ;)

>275 richardderus: Twas probably me putting it on my swollen lymph nodes. :P

Jan 16, 4:36pm Top

>276 MickyFine: It was indeed you and the lymph nodes.

I'm informed that tickly is first preference and finger-combable is the sine qua non. Since the criteria are easily met, we're good to go.

Jan 16, 4:38pm Top

>275 richardderus: Well, who knew?!

Birdy and I are making loaded potato soup with toasted bread for dinner, so I brought you some:

Jan 16, 4:45pm Top

>265 richardderus: 'Drunk Zombie Romeo and Juliet With a New Ending' I read that last year in Romeo and/or Juliet.

Cute Sloths

and Yummy cake.

Edited: Jan 16, 5:54pm Top

>278 Crazymamie: Ooooh *scrambles to find spoon*

>279 BBGirl55: Ahhhh *scrambles to find cake fork and wife to look at cute sloths*

Jan 16, 7:29pm Top

>275 richardderus: wow- I had precisely no idea that you could use vapo rub for so much!
Must the sock in the first listing be a man's sock specifically? Is there something manly about the sock that renders the treatment effective?

Jan 16, 7:50pm Top

Women wear stockings not socks (in the time/the writer's mind)?

I prefer Carmex for cold sores - it's the same stuff (petroleum jelly) but somehow less...flavorful (well, it's designed for lips). The other good treatment is baking soda, and between trying to keep it from falling off and having to taste it, it's not a winner with me (though it does do a good job on cold sores!).

Jan 16, 7:52pm Top

9 The Stainless Steel Rat by Harry Harrison

Rating: 3* of five

Distastefully sexist, but 58 years old.

It was a modest amount of fun reading it because I like capers. "Slippery Jim" diGriz plans a fun caper indeed, thrice in fact, and I had no problem seeing how to modernize the capers. Still and all, I can't really think of a reason to read the book if you haven't already because there's really nothing substantive to be gained and a lot of attitude changes have rendered the central points of the plot outdated to the point of actually becoming offensive in a #MeToo world.

So you've been warned/enticed, depending on your social orientation.

Jan 16, 7:57pm Top

>278 Crazymamie: Ooo! Aaah!! Thank you, sweetness, precisely what I was in the mood for.

Weird about the nail fungus...makes me more than a little leery of putting it on/in my body.

>279 BBGirl55: Ow! Book bulleted in my own thread!!

Joe seems to have consumed the cake and the sloths, well, no one eats sloth meat that I know of.

>280 jnwelch: back back you fiend away from my soup! Away I say!!

Jan 16, 8:00pm Top

>281 LovingLit: I suspect it's a warning to use a big enough expanse of knitted cotton to make the effort sub-lethal more than any sexist thing.

>282 jjmcgaffey: I've had one cold sore in my life and would use Drano if threatened with another one so long as I was assured it would prevent the damned thing from erupting.

Jan 16, 8:05pm Top

>285 richardderus: I get them regularly - ugh. However, Carmex heavily applied to the hotspot before the blister actually forms will often prevent the blister from ever forming - and if you miss the sweet spot, it will still reduce the time the blister lasts and most importantly, prevent it from spreading. Since I discovered Carmex (I use it as lip balm regularly, but will go through huge amounts if a cold sore threatens), I haven't had any infestations, where one blister splits and spawns several more on the opposite lip (ugh ugh ugh). I find the ads for Abreva, and Carmex Cold Sore, highly amusing, since plain Carmex does what both of them claim (at a much lower price, too).

Jan 16, 8:17pm Top

10 Fire and Fury by Michael Wolff

Rating: 3* of five

All the stars removed are for not properly sourcing each published morsel. There are enough gossip rags out there. The World According to 45 I was expecting turned out to be too much pandering to my political prejudices and too little buttressing of my political preferences.

I hate 45. I hate everything it "stands" for. I despise, detest, and denigrate the hoi polloi that voted for such a con man and would happily deny such ignorant and useless eaters their right to vote. I expected to have more rocks to throw down on their pointy, mange-ridden, scabies-afflicted heads. Instead I got a bunch of gossipy dirt that felt so schadenfreude-good that I had to lie down to recover after some of the juicier passages.

But I was expecting more substance, as in "see, Prosecutor Muller, see? Look here! See?!?" level dirt. If, like me, you're on the left side of The Problem With Modern Politics and need something to stoke your Outrage Engine, this is a good choice. If you're hoping for smoking gun revelations, not so much.

Jan 16, 8:19pm Top

>286 jjmcgaffey: Oh dear, Jenn, I am so sorry that affliction has roots in your life and lips. That'd be torture!!

We need to find an anti-herpes vaccine that works for all strains.

Jan 16, 8:28pm Top

>287 richardderus: - Thanks for reading it for me, Richard. I heard a good interview with the author and concluded that that was about as much as I need to know, and as much time as I needed to spend on it.

Your review has reassured me that my decision was right.

By the way, a friend of mine has suggested to me a new acronym for 45:

SCROTUS (So-Called Ruler of the United States). It sounds like a perfect fit

Jan 16, 8:29pm Top

I've always thought that VapoRub was a holdover from snake oil days.

Sloths. Newp. Just a little too Island of Dr. Moreau for me.

Jan 16, 8:34pm Top



Haw haw.



Jan 16, 9:03pm Top

>290 SomeGuyInVirginia: VapoRub hasn't crossed my mind much in the past two or three decades and now here I am talking about it. Peculiar what life does, innit.

Total agreement on sloths.

My new thread is up.

This topic was continued by richardderus third thread of 2018.

Group: 75 Books Challenge for 2018

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