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Angry underwater dancing apes eating crunchy figs

apes eating figs under water

Kidding? Not!

Spotted at Ace‘s, where there’s probably still time to contribute some poetry to the thread. Or whatever that shit is.

Hey, I found an old diary while I was packing my stuff. Oof! I know about terrible, humiliating writing bubbling up from adolescence. But dude was in college when he wrote this. And he let them publish it.

Senator, there is a difference between imagery and gibberish. Trust me, I speak fluent gibberish. I was in all the advanced placement gibberish classes. Later, I was offered a fellowship in weed, so I’m pret-ty sure I know where you’re coming from with this one.

Update: typical Weasel, I left off the punchline. Jack Cashill in American Thinker points out that Obama went straight from Underwater Apes Crunching Figs to Dreams from my Father (by all accounts, a book of some literary merit) with nothing between. He makes a persuasive case that Dreams was ghost written — very possibly by William Ayers. I think the former is pretty likely, and the latter is too delicious not to repeat irresponsibly.


Comment from Muslihoon
Time: October 9, 2008, 1:14 pm

The next World Poet Laureate I am sure, from how the world’s people fawn on Him.

Comment from porknbean
Time: October 9, 2008, 1:16 pm

Here is where that probably came from…an article from the American Thinker that asks who actually wrote ‘Dreams of My Father’.
Geee…could it be Ayers? Makes a good case. Obama has no other writings to be found and then he comes out with such a flowery tomb with many similarities to Ayers style.


Comment from Lemur King
Time: October 9, 2008, 2:05 pm

Next year, an American might bet the Nobel in Writing, and it might be O’bama since he’s so much more about change and less insular. Does “less insular” mean “stoned”? Don’t blame me, that’s what the Swede Dude said. Insular. All of us are, uh, insular.

Comment from Gibby Haynes
Time: October 9, 2008, 2:09 pm

Crunchy figs? Are they ever crunchy? The only time I’ve ever had figs were as the sticky brown filling of Fig Rolls, and they most certainly are not crunchy (more like mushy, pooey stuff but great nonetheless).

Musli, the fact that entire world almost unanimously adores Him is, I think, a testament to the power of state-controlled broadcasting. I can’t think of any other reason. Thank God for the internet.

Comment from Dawn
Time: October 9, 2008, 2:09 pm

Have you read Michele’s thesis? It’s nearly as bad. It isn’t Apes, they crunch bad. But it’s bad.

Comment from Lemur King
Time: October 9, 2008, 2:12 pm

Gibby, the only other reason I can think of is too damn depressing to consider for long: That the world really is crazy-insane and without hope.

You’d think a Messiah worth his salt would be worth more in literary or poetry terms.

Comment from porknbean
Time: October 9, 2008, 2:17 pm

Holy crap. Are any of you hearing what is going on at the McCain/Palin rally in Wisconsin? Soundbites on Rush.

Comment from Muslihoon
Time: October 9, 2008, 2:17 pm

Okay, folkses, I need your help.

I’ve never “gotten” poetry. Why do people like it? How is it different from skilled prose? What different do rhyme and meter make?

Poetry stumps me. Help, please?

Comment from Dawn
Time: October 9, 2008, 2:21 pm

Thanks pnd. I just caught Palin addressing Obama’s record on infanticide.
Finally! The only one with any balls is a woman.

Comment from Dawn
Time: October 9, 2008, 2:24 pm

Musli, you have to read Ace’s post.
Monkeys throw poo! Peaches scare me.
That’s poetry we all “get”.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: October 9, 2008, 2:24 pm

Yeah, they’re doing great. I’m listening to Rush. Naming Barney Frank and Dodd! w00t!

I often don’t get poetry either, Musli. Particularly modern poetry. But I don’t have to see this come out of the backend of an animal to know what it is. Phew!

Comment from porknbean
Time: October 9, 2008, 2:26 pm

Not just Palin today, Dawn. The fighter pilot showed up too. He named names.

Comment from Jill
Time: October 9, 2008, 2:39 pm

After reading that, I am never going to be afraid to express myself in my blog ever again.

Does anyone have a limerick they can share with Musli?


Comment from Lemur King
Time: October 9, 2008, 2:41 pm

I think the more “intellectual” the poet the less there is to get and the less it even looks like what us commoners call poetry. It’s all bullshit.

Good for Palin. I’m tired of hearing only about how O’s farts don’t stink (yet his plane does?) and how McCain=Bush=Satan and that Palin should go home and bake cookies. I don’t have speakers here at work that I dare use.

Keep us posted, k?

Comment from glenster
Time: October 9, 2008, 2:57 pm

For Musli:

There once was a lady from Madras,
Who had a very fine ass,
It’s not what you think –
All soft, round and pink;
It was grey, had long ears and ate grass!

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: October 9, 2008, 2:58 pm

My favorite:

There once was a woman from Exeter
So beautiful, men craned their necks at her.
And then the more brave
Would smile and wave…
…the distinguishing marks of their sex at her.

Comment from porknbean
Time: October 9, 2008, 3:00 pm

LK, Rush updates his site around 5pm CST. You will be able to listen to the clips later there. Until he updates, anyone can access his site.

Though it had to take very frustrated attendees to drag the fighter pilot out of him.

Comment from Lemur King
Time: October 9, 2008, 3:22 pm

Maybe that’s a good idea pnb. I can say “Kids, gather round as we sit down as a family and listen to Rush, ’cause he’s Right.”

How do you get two kids under age 6 to sit still that long?

Comment from iamfelix
Time: October 9, 2008, 3:37 pm

For Musli:

There was an young woman from Hyde
Who ate a green apple and died.
The apple fermented
Inside the lamented
And made cider inside her inside.


Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: October 9, 2008, 3:43 pm

Sorry, but my favorite is still:

A deer in my headlights was struck
By an oncoming eighteen-wheel truck.
She then sailed through the air
With her head out her tail
And a buck that was stuck where it fuck’d.

A minion named Musli once mused
That this poetry crap don’t amuse.
He claimed he don’t get it
But this hid his real gambit
A poetry thread! What’s to lose?

A minion named Steamboat was stymied
He tried lifting a dime with his hiney.
It did slip from his butt
And he sat on his nuts
Then he wished his buns weren’t quite so tiny.

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: October 9, 2008, 3:45 pm

Akismet ate my muse! How rude!

Comment from Scubafreak
Time: October 9, 2008, 4:00 pm

Ugg. I’ll never touch Fig Newtons again.

Comment from porknbean
Time: October 9, 2008, 4:09 pm

How do you get two kids under age 6 to sit still that long?

You don’t at this age. Start ’em out with how great a country they live in. Tell ’em stories of our founding. Read ’em stuff like the ‘Little House’ books at bedtime.

If you talk about these current events to your Cruel wife, they will pick up on it as they grow. Then later you tell ’em about the greedy socialist shit revolutionaries that have been trying to bring us down since the 30s.

Comment from porknbean
Time: October 9, 2008, 4:17 pm

Here is one of the clips. Fired up crowd tells McCain to fight.


Comment from Enas Yorl
Time: October 9, 2008, 4:20 pm

There once was a man from Nantucket.
Whose words were vexed by the Spambucket.
Until, finally he snapped,
Fig flinger monkeys he crapped,
And murdered Akismet’s creator with a titanium spork going STABBY STABBY STABBY IN THE EYES DIE YOU STUPID HACK WHY DID YOU DO THIS TO ME!!!!!! DAMMIT I AM NOT SPAM!!!!!

I may have gone off the classic limerick form there at the end.


Comment from Lemur King
Time: October 9, 2008, 4:20 pm

Oh, I’m sure they’re picking it up through the conversations, dropped jaws, extended tirades, and thousand-yard stares.

I just hope I can inoculate them against the Teacher’s Union in time. The indoctrination they get even in grade school is horrible, and that was in the 80’s. I shudder to imagine what it is now.

Little House is a great idea, thank you! I have read Stuart Little and Charlotte’s Web to GirlHead already and she loved ’em.

Comment from Scubafreak
Time: October 9, 2008, 4:25 pm

A bit off subject, has anyone heard anything new on the rumor Limbaugh was mentioning this morning about ACORN and the Obama campaign facing a Federal RICO investigation over the whole voter fraud issue?

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: October 9, 2008, 4:31 pm

Boy! is this election starting to get dirty. Liking it I am.

Comment from porknbean
Time: October 9, 2008, 4:39 pm

I just hope I can inoculate them against the Teacher’s Union in time.

You can. Just keep giving them a good, positive, foundation, and keep talking to them, reading to them, asking them questions, telling them to question everything, compare and contrast.

Enas –
Heh. That was beautiful.

Comment from iamfelix
Time: October 9, 2008, 4:42 pm

LOL @ Enas … ha ha ha ha ha.

Comment from porknbean
Time: October 9, 2008, 4:44 pm

scubafreak, I found this…


I think the freepers have something too.
Not sure of any validity. I hope there is.

Comment from Lemur King
Time: October 9, 2008, 4:48 pm

Enas, I’m sorry I missed your awesome poetry before.

Musli, THAT is pure poetry. Beautiful. (sniff sniff)

I’m not crying… I have something in my eye…

Comment from Jill
Time: October 9, 2008, 4:53 pm

Enas / McGoo…I am dyyyinngg laughing…

Comment from Scubafreak
Time: October 9, 2008, 4:57 pm

P&B. Thanks, i’ll look into it. 🙂

Comment from jwpaine
Time: October 9, 2008, 5:03 pm

Got a one-word poem for Him! (Note that the proper way to refer to the Senator From Change requires not only capitalization, but an exclamation point after “Him”, as well):


Comment from jwpaine
Time: October 9, 2008, 5:40 pm

Remarkable fellow, Obama,
Promised he’d murder Osama.
Right after repairs
To the rep of Bill Ayres
–Our first Secretary, Bombing Affairs.

Comment from nbpundit
Time: October 9, 2008, 5:57 pm

Cross posting this here, y’all pray there’s still some
justice in this insane world.


Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: October 9, 2008, 6:06 pm

jw – I like the one word’er. Succinct. The maximum of information transfer in the minimum number of letters.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: October 9, 2008, 6:13 pm

Oh, for fuck’s sake. If Sarah Palin had confused the words “epitaph” and “epithet” they’d be all over her hockey-mom ignorance like stupid on Hollywood. But in Slow Joe Biden’s idiot mouth, it becomes prophecy:

At rallies this week where Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin made sinister insinuations about Obama, attendees yelled out “Treason!” “Terrorist” and “Kill him!” in reference to Obama. At a Florida rally for Palin, a supporter used a racial epithet to attack an African-American member of the media.


“I mean, here you have out there these kinds of, you know, incitements out there — a guy introducing Barack, using his middle name as if it’s some epitaph or something,” Biden said. “This is over the top.”

Presumably, Biden meant “epithet,” not “epitaph.” Though perhaps it was a Freudian slip indicating larger, unspoken fear of Biden’s.

“Kill him”?! I call bullshit!

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: October 9, 2008, 6:16 pm

Sorry, Weasel, but I can’t stop thinking:

The Fellowship Of The Weed.
The Two Blunts
The Return Of The Buzz.

And the prequel,

The Roachclip

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: October 9, 2008, 6:21 pm

Oh God, McGoo — have you ever read “Bored of the Rings”? You’d love it. National Lampoon parody. I was a Tolkien-humping 8-year-old when it came out, and even I had to admit it was howling funny.

“Tim, Tim Bendzedrine…” is the only bit I remember now.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: October 9, 2008, 6:25 pm

Clarification: I was probably 12 when I read it. I read LotR when I was nine, and took up with NatLamp when I was 12.

Even a weasel isn’t that precocious (and stoats are often impregnated by their fathers before their eyes open, but that’s another story for another day).

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: October 9, 2008, 6:34 pm

Have I read BofhteR? My Lady! Surely you jest!

This is from memory – I swear by my tattoo! :

I sit on the floor and pick my nose
And dream of dirty things.
Of deviant dwarves who suck their toes
And elves who drub their dings.

I sit on the floor and pick my nose
And dream erotic dreams
Of dragons who dress in rubber clothes
And trolls who do it in teams.

As I sit on the floor and pick my nose
And wish for a thrill or two
For a Goblin who goes in for a few no-noes
Or an orc with a thing about glue.

And all of the while I sit and pick
I think of such jolly things.
Of whips and screws and leather slacks
Of frottages and of stings!

Heh. Have I read BofhteR!?!

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: October 9, 2008, 6:39 pm

Oh, yeah.

Tim! Tim! benzadrine!
Hash! Boo! Valvoline!
Clean, clean clean for Jean!
First! Second! neutral! Park!
Hide the hence, thou leafy narc.

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: October 9, 2008, 6:51 pm

On a slightly more serious note:

Weasel, what all Republican office-holders should now do is to work overtime contriving statements that incorrectly swap the word epitaph/epithet. I’m talking doing it a dozen times a day. No MSM dare criticize them without blowing their conspiracy of silence.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: October 9, 2008, 6:57 pm

Hash! Boo! Valvoline!

Oh, Jesus. I remember now. And let me tell you what, if you ever got into the benzedrine, you’d sure as shit clean, clean, clean for Jean! Or do anything else you had to to burn off a little energy.

Not an uppers girl, me.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: October 9, 2008, 7:12 pm

Oh, yeah. Bored of the Rings! Read it in the Navy; my entire division (19 people) were Gandalf-crazy(except for me, they all adopted LotR nicknames, fer chrissakes. Bored provided a tiny, brief, but much needed relief.

Steam: Yeah, I like the one-worder better too. And it has an added cache in that it’s equally deserving of a five-figure grant from the government. lighght, indeed.

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: October 9, 2008, 7:18 pm

Stoaty, I have a copy (2-3 actually, I think) of the book packed away somewhere. I still read it every few years. Naturally some of it is quite dated, e.g. I doubt most folk today would get a reference to Dirksen.

But the names! Goodgulf Greyteeth for Gandalf? Gimlet, son of Groin? Legolamb? Arrowroot – son of Arrowshirt? Frito, Dildo?

Comment from jwpaine
Time: October 9, 2008, 7:23 pm

Crystal meth. Man!

/or so I’ve heard

Comment from Dawn
Time: October 9, 2008, 7:30 pm

Right this very minute I am arguing with someone who thinks I hate Obama because I support McCain.
Gads! They don’t get us at all, do they?

Comment from jwpaine
Time: October 9, 2008, 7:30 pm

I don’t recall much about BotR (except that it was funny); I do remember a bit better the “National Lampoon Editors Answer Questions From Young Ladies” (or something similar). My favorite is:

Q: What can I do about my problem complexion?
A: Protein is the natural enemy of pimples, and the more of it you can somehow get on your face, the better.

Comment from Mrs. Peel
Time: October 9, 2008, 7:32 pm

I vaguely remember reading that a while back, and thinking it was really lame. I didn’t like all the pederasty jokes. Shamus’s DM of the Rings is much more my style.

edit: Musli, I will try to give you a serious answer re: poetry with examples later tonight. Or maybe tomorrow – I’m going to try a new recipe tonight, so I might be worn out after all the cooking.

Comment from Dawn
Time: October 9, 2008, 7:35 pm

Want to hear a guilty confession? I bought the Lord of the Rings books so people would think I read them. I never really knew what they were about until the movies came out.

Oh man, that’s just pathetic.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: October 9, 2008, 7:36 pm

Lame jokes??!! Come on, Mrs. Peel! Any guy who tells you he doesn’t like those kind of jokes (or ones with boogers involved) is either lying for nefarious (and transparent) purposes, or he’s teh gay!

Dawn: I probably didn’t like BotR as much as Steam and Weez precisely for the reason you note-I didn’t read the source material. About two years ago I broke down and bought the damn trilogy, and managed to wade through the first and half of the second before I gave up.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: October 9, 2008, 7:40 pm

Dawn, I read them when I was nine. That’s really too young, even for a clever weasel. It took me months and months to make it through, and I had to back up and re-read many times.

Looking back, I think that was the right way and the right age and the right pace to read them at. The trilogy was incredibly powerful read too young and too slow.

I absolutely loathed the movies (the ones I even watched), because they couldn’t begin to compete with that experience.

I wish they’d let me cast those things. And given me script approval. 🙁

Comment from Dawn
Time: October 9, 2008, 7:42 pm

But if you guys want to talk Hitchhiker’s Guide, 1984, or the Gunslinger series…I have true nerd credentials there.

Comment from Dawn
Time: October 9, 2008, 7:48 pm

Oh, isn’t that cute? My six-year-old daughter just came in and asked me why that monkey was underwater.

You are a true artist, stoaty.

Comment from Mrs. Peel
Time: October 9, 2008, 7:50 pm

I might like the lampoon now. I think I was 13 when I read it, and I was grossed out by the constant implications of sexual contact between the characters. (Obviously, this was long before there was such a thing as AOSHQ.)

I first read Hobbit and LotR back in 4th grade, iirc. I think I’ve read LotR about 25 times now. Love it, obviously.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: October 9, 2008, 7:52 pm

Dawn: Read the HGttG, but spent much more time playing the Infocom text-adventure game on my PC (your inventory always included “no tea”). Inspired me to learn assembly language (meh) to program a game system that could parse English commands. I had it functional, and was working on an actual game when Loderunner was introduced for the PC. That was pretty much the end of text-adventure games for me.

Naturally, read the entire Gunslinger series, although the last two were more of a chore than a pasttime.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: October 9, 2008, 7:54 pm

We are a bookish bunch, ain’t we.

Comment from Allen
Time: October 9, 2008, 8:15 pm

The Gunslinger, hmmm. Those books inspired my bi-annual Christmas vacation horse trip. Specifically, the crossing the desert part in the first and last books.

Here’s the ride: North and East to Fossil Falls. North some more to Olancha, then East across the Olancha sand dunes. Continue East to Darwin, then over to Panamint Springs. Finally, up over Townes Pass and into Death Valley. Trailer home. 8 days in the saddle.

Making coffee in the mornings over a small Creosote fire, where the sticks look like old grey bones. Chewing on beef jerky while the horses eat their grain. Purrrrfect.

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: October 9, 2008, 8:28 pm

Dawn, I bought The Gunslinger when it hadn’t even come out yet: SK sold 250(?) signed & numbered big hardback first editions way back in the early 80’s (I think). I sold it years later for 12x what I paid for it. Wish I hadn’t.

After the second installment of Gunslinger, I got bored with it.

As for BOTR, I originally read the Hobbit and LOTR trilogy specifically because I wanted to appreciate BOTR. I did. I also just loved LOTR and read it again every few years.

Edit: Mrs. P – You might be a little tougher now vis-a-vis the literary porno in BOTR. It’s mild compared to what one gets exposed to today.

Comment from apotheosis
Time: October 9, 2008, 8:49 pm

The last two Gunslinger books weren’t just a chore, they were a dire f@&#%&ng tragedy. At the end of the last book I realized I’d learned to hate Stephen King more than peas.

And I really, really hate peas.

apotheosis hated peas. he hated their leathery skins, their insides that squished like the moldy entrails of a long-dead writing career that refused to stay politely and agreeably interred. Boogery green asymmetric spheres glowing with an unnatural eldritch light under the glare of the vent hood fluorescents.

Once, he wrote compelling stories about alternate universes inhabited by good healthy vegetables, and also the occasional pea.[1] The peas creeped people out; they were described with uncanny attention to the gruesome detail, which as everyone knows, peas have in spades.

And his stories were realistic, because even if the peas were all stuffed down the garbage disposal at the end, you knew a few good veggies – a carrot, maybe even a tomato – would end up down there with them. None of that “happily ever after” sh*t in THIS story, bucko, this is reality.

He also did some pioneering work into the evil antihero thing, where you end up liking the evil character a lot, which might seem weird since we’re talking about something as essentially bad and wrong as peas. But I bet you don’t turn your nose up at fried rice, do you? Yeah. There’s evil in all of us, and peas are the avatar of that evil.

But his stories grew increasingly self-referential and predictable, and it seemed like he couldn’t go a single paragraph without talking about how he almost choked to death on a pea once, and if it seemed like he obsessed about peas well, that’s just because they were a metaphor for something even more evil.

So instead of trying for another metaphor he decided it’d be better to play down to the perceived level of his remaining fans; he took over a decade to draw out the climax of a single shining work of art, and then phoned in a conclusion that would get a seventh grade student drummed out of Creative Writing 101 in a hail of quill pens and frustration.

Because irony is cooler than talent.

[1] Mostly set in Maine, because to the majority of the country, nothing’s creepier than a northeasterner. Deliverance might’ve been set in the south but making that a creepy classic took a huge budget and hollywood stars; some years later, three dumb college kids walked into the Jersey pine barrens with a handicam and made more money than God.

Comment from Muslihoon
Time: October 9, 2008, 8:59 pm

Thanks for putting me to some knowledge.

Y’all’s poetry is delightful. But then I see it more as humorous prose than poetry, y’know?

I once wrote a very embarrassing e-mail to Jeff Goldstein praising his ability with words. I suppose one might call it poetic. It was so fawning I blushed deep red when I re-read the e-mail after sending it.

Maybe that’s why I simply hate and detest She Who Must Not Be Named: she tried to take on my man-crush.

I love people who’re skilled with words. Forget money: I’d do anything for such an one.

apotheosis: Nice work!

Have any of you read Foucault’s Pendulum by Umberto Eco? Simply delightful.

I also like Terry Pratchett’s book. Maybe I should take up reading him again. I need some levity in my life.

Want to know my new-found guilty pleasure? Talmud! I just dropped about fifteen hundred to buy 73 volumes of the Talmud translated into English. I love Jewish law!

Comment from apotheosis
Time: October 9, 2008, 9:09 pm

I never read any Eco, though I’ve been told I should do so prior to reading Neal Stephenson’s Baroque Cycle. Something about building up endurance, like swinging two bats in the on-deck circle.

Having repeatedly failed to make it even halfway through Quicksilver, I concede the point.

Comment from Muslihoon
Time: October 9, 2008, 9:09 pm

Aw, timed out. Anyway, that fifteen hundred was a bargain. A good set of the Talmud translated into English — the set I want — can be up to three thousand without shipping. I feel sort of guilty buying it during Yom Kippur. Unfortunately, the translation contains only the Mishna and Gemara portion, with a few commentaries, and not a translation of the extensive commentaries that surround the Mishna and Gemara portion. Ah well. Artscroll (the copy who published this set of the Talmud) is well-known for supplying the commentary in the commentary section or within the translation. The Soncino version was a much more literal translation, which doesn’t help because the Mishna and Gemara are written in a verse terse style.

Normally, one would write: “This is a glorious day, what with the sun shining and the temperature quite pleasant.”

The Mishna and Gemara section would write: “This glorious day shine pleasant.”

So, Artscroll supplies the rest of the words, which the commentary around the text (mainly Rashi) provide. The Soncino doesn’t supply as much context. And those are the only English translations I know of.

Interestingly, one has to be bilingual to understand/study Talmud. The Mishna is in Hebrew, and the Gemara is in Aramaic. I don’t know about Rashi and the rest: maybe they’re in Hebrew too, maybe Aramaic. I don’t have the time to learn Talmudic Hebrew and Talmudic Aramaic, so I have to do with an English translation. Maybe later, when I have more time and money, I’ll master Hebrew and Aramaic. My goal is to become, in the future, a chacham Talmud (one knowledgeable in Talmud). The first former Muslim, Latter-day Saint, South Asian chacham Talmud!

Em, so, now that you’re all bored…and think me weirder than ever…so, now I’m going to write my paper about corruption in Poland.

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: October 9, 2008, 9:20 pm

I read Eco’s The Name Of The Rose, and Baudolino. But it’s been a long time.

NotR was quite good, and a movie was made from it that was also quite good.

Another good author is Arturo Perez-Reverte, who wrote The Club Dumas (made into the very good Johnny Depp flick “The Ninth gate”) and Queen of the South (outstanding) and a bunch of others.

Comment from LemurKing
Time: October 9, 2008, 9:21 pm

I think I’m one of two people in the nation who just didn’t “get” any of Pratchett’s books.

No one would probably care, but in it’s own genre the Hyperion series by Dan Simmons spans an entire universe. By the time you finish the books you have an excellent feel for how the Pax (the catholic church) came to rule much of the known galaxy and what that galaxy looked like. Excellent sci-fi and loaded with unique ideas. I can’t even do it justice.

Enas, have you stopped chewing your lip to a bloody froth yet?

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: October 9, 2008, 9:26 pm

Then I’m the third, LK. I tried reading one of Pratchett’s books (I don’t remember the title) – couldn’t get into it – and haven’t tried since.

Read any Christopher Moore? Lamb is a must read, in my opinion. I’ve probably read it half-dozen times and still die laughing at certain parts.

Comment from Muslihoon
Time: October 9, 2008, 9:27 pm

I like Pratchett’s faux seriousness…funny sci-fi fantasy with humorous footnotes, like authors who take themselves seriously. Seriously, footnotes for a fictitious existence?


Comment from LemurKing
Time: October 9, 2008, 9:45 pm

The only Pratchett book that had anything I thought was funny was the female bearded-dwarf cop named… wait for it…

Cheery Littlebottom.

Yes, the footnote for “CBC’s” – crunch brown bits – in place of PCB’s was hilarious. But other than those two things… I was underwhelmed.

Christopher Moore, no. What genre?

A co-worker (The Dude) suggested Vince Flynn’s Term Limits. It sounds good and fits the current mood regarding Congress. Apparently a number of ex special forces guys take it into their heads that they will “remove” any and all reps and senators one at a time until they pass certain laws -and then- quit.

The Swamp needs draining this election, that’s for sure. Vote out all incumbents, keep ’em honest and one-timers!

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: October 9, 2008, 9:53 pm

Moore writes standard drama/fiction, SF, and comedy/drama.

Lamb is about Jesus Christ, and his boyhood pal, Biff. It’s told by Biff, who has been resurrected from the dead by a stunningly dumbshit angel to tell Christ’s life story – the real story.

Don’t be put off by any religious connotation; it is not religious except insofar as, well, it was Christ after all. LK – it’s probably the funniest book I’ve ever read, or at least in the top five. I strongly recommend it if you like silly humor with an occasional touch of adult seriousness.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: October 9, 2008, 9:57 pm

Nothing like setting goals for yourself, Muslihoon. I managed to teach myself Spanish, and then only good enough to chat-up the ladies (requires surprisingly little Spanish). Oh, and host a news-and-musica-ranchera radio show (which requires even less).

Comment from Muslihoon
Time: October 9, 2008, 9:58 pm

Another excellent book is Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: October 9, 2008, 10:00 pm

I quit reading SF long ago (I don’t read Heinlein for the science fiction); Asimov turned me off it. His nonfiction is superb (his book on sliderules is a classic, and his annotated Gulliver’s Travels is too-too funny), but his fiction is drier than a popcorn fart, and the dialogue he puts in his characters mouths is, oh, you don’t want to know what I think that must taste like.

Comment from LemurKing
Time: October 9, 2008, 10:18 pm

jw, the only spanish I ever needed “cervezas”, “dos equis”, “coronas”. Once we had that down the ladies pretty much followed.

Do try Simmons if you ever dip a toe back in the SF waters. No popcorn farts there. Lots of good old juicy… uh… sorry… broken metaphor. You get the idea.

‘Goo, is the book still in print or would it be an ebay item? I’m guiltily taking time away from work to write this but don’t feel right going to look it up. And I’m lazy as hell.

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: October 9, 2008, 10:24 pm

I think its still in print in paperback. Any half-decent SF/fiction bookstore (B&N, Borders, etc) should have it in stock. If not, it’ll be in the used stores or ebay for sure, and probably cheap. They sold a lot of ’em.

Pingback from What Good is Poetry? « Mrs. Peel’s Words of Wisdom
Time: October 9, 2008, 10:27 pm

[…] Magic City by E. Nesbit What Good is Poetry? 9 October 2008 Musli asks a question at the Weas’s: Okay, folkses, I need your […]

Comment from Mrs. Peel
Time: October 9, 2008, 10:31 pm

Musli, I put your answer up. Be warned; it’s VERY long.

(sorry to link-whore, Weas.)

Comment from Muslihoon
Time: October 9, 2008, 10:48 pm

Thank you, Mrs. Peel! I shall study your post soon.

Comment from Enas Yorl
Time: October 9, 2008, 11:27 pm

Goodness, late to the party at House o’ Weasel again. Lots of stuff to go over here:

LotR: I read The Hobbit in elementary school, the trilogy & The Silmarillion in Jr. High. I couldn’t get enough of that stuff. And for the record I LOVED the movies. I saw all of them three times in the theater and have the boxed set DVDs. Also full sized replicas of the sword Narsil and Saruman’s staff. 🙂

BotR: A few years ago a friend lent me her copy of it and I eventually slogged through it. Yah it was a slog for me. I didn’t care for it at all. It tried too hard to be funny.

Dan Simmons is an excellent author – he can spin one hellova story. Not very prolific though.

Dr. Asimov: I understand the knock against his characters and dialog. I don’t care – I love his plots.

I have to give a shout-out to Larry Niven here though since no-one else has mentioned him. His various books and stories that make up The Tales of Known Space are particularly good. You’ll probably have to haunt used book stores to find the older ones though.

Terry Pratchett: I loved his stuff for many years, and boy he did crank out a ton of books. Some of his later stuff got a bit repetitive for me and I lost interest for a while. He picked it back up with his Moist Von Lipwig character though. Alas he’s been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s so he won’t have too many more books to write though.

Let’s see, what else? Oh yes. Mr. King and the Gunslinger. I had such high hopes for this series – surely it was going to be his crowning achievement. The book he wrote after the long break (and his accident) gave me Han Solo levels of “A Bad Feeling About This” that only got worse with each book, and the last book with each page. I’ll never read anything new by Stephen King again.

Hitchhiker’s Guide: What a wonderful series! I don’t think I’ve ever laughed so much. Adams died wayyyyy too young. OMG – the Infocom game! I think I nearly wept when I finally got that @$%^ing Babel fish in my ear. I have to admit that I had to buy the help guide to finally finish the game though.

Whelp, I’m done. I have to go iron pants now.

Comment from LemurKing
Time: October 10, 2008, 12:02 am

Is “iron pants” a euphemism of sorts for something involving a spork?

I’ll never get that out of my mind.

I did like the Gunslinger, even the last ones but I was left with this feeling “Geez, they could be so much more.” It started feeling like perhaps the best of the series came to him in an opium dream and like Xanadu just faded into the mists when he was interrupted and then he just said “Go then, there are other worlds than these.”

King’s crowning achievement as far as a tale of a long journey? The Talisman. You could tell where Straub left his mark but King held the story in his hand.

Ok, back to work. Damn, this is such a fun diversion.

Comment from Allen
Time: October 10, 2008, 12:21 am

A small book, yet endlessly thinkable (yeah that makes no sense.)

Franz Kafka’s “Parables and Paradoxes.”

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: October 10, 2008, 2:07 am

Anything by Bradbury. A very great writer — as in user-of-words — who will never be acknowledged as such because he wrote science fiction.

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: October 10, 2008, 7:31 am

Yeah, Enas. Larry Niven is quite good. Known Space stories and the Ringworld trilogy are all fantastic.

LK – I used to argue with a friend about which chapters (and even paragraphs) King vs. Straub wrote in Talisman. It was an incompletely mixed batter of a story.

Comment from pajama momma
Time: October 10, 2008, 9:43 am

Something Wicked This Way Comes is delicious.

Comment from pajama momma
Time: October 10, 2008, 9:43 am

AND I freaking love that photo shop. I LOL’d last night when I saw it.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: October 10, 2008, 10:37 am

Bush press conference: “this plan is big enough to work.”


Comment from Lemur King
Time: October 10, 2008, 10:43 am

By the pricking of my thumbs, something wicked this way comes. About the closest exposure most get to see of Shakespeare. Wonderful story, pjm.

Neal Stephenson, Cryptonomicon. (enigma, cryptography, post WWII present-day)

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: October 10, 2008, 11:00 am

LK – we read from the same shelf. I read Cryptonomicon quite a while ago. It was good, but I didn’t care for the seemingly overemphasized risqué dialog between Turing and his , um, buddy. There were some plot contrivances that were a bit rough around the edges, but not a bad read. The history mix was really intriguing.

And the movie SWTWC with Jason Robards was quite good.

Comment from WeaselWrangler
Time: October 10, 2008, 11:11 am

Great stuff, all. I absolutely devoured Heinlein, Asimov, Niven, et al. I read and enjoyed “Stranger in a Strange Land” before all the stupid hippies read it and ruined it with their aping (underwater?)by invoking passages as if it were the new gospel. IMO, BO’s “poem” is certainly a candidate for a new edition of “The Stuffed Owl” an anthology of bad poetry that is a scream to read.

Comment from Lemur King
Time: October 10, 2008, 11:19 am

‘Goo, I thought however that Waterhouse’s response to Rudy was hilarious. Typical clueless Waterhouse mindset.

“Manual Override” will never mean the same thing for me again.

Comment from Steamboat McGoo
Time: October 10, 2008, 11:19 am

I agree with all you’ve said, WeaselWrangler, except that I think to get into The Stuffed Owl, your work has to be “so bad its good” – like “Attack Of The Killer Tomatoes” bad.

BO’s stuff is just garden-variety crap. It isn’t even a interesting crap.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: October 10, 2008, 11:58 am

Much as I despise Him! I can’t knock the guy for writing bad poetry for a college course. Who hasn’t writte bad poetry for a college course? (not me, of course…. I’m just sayin’)

Comment from jwpaine
Time: October 10, 2008, 12:03 pm

I can knock the guy, though, for apparently trying to derail a sitting President’s negotiations with the Iraqi government.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: October 10, 2008, 12:04 pm

Help! One link, and I’m in Akismet-limbo!

Hmmm… lemme see if I can sneak it in via an edit:

I can, however, knock the guy for apparently trying to undermine a sitting President’s negotiations with the Iraqi government.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: October 10, 2008, 12:05 pm

I’ve written some awful shit, truly. But I think I can put my hand on my heart and assert with every confidence that I have NEVER written shit as bad as lines 3, 4 and 5. Not in elementary school, let alone college.

Stepping on the figs
That the apes
Eat, they crunch.

If I were a dog, I’d roll around in that.

Comment from apotheosis
Time: October 10, 2008, 12:16 pm

LK, have you read Stephenson’s latest yet?

I just finished it recently, and I’m still not sure how to feel about it.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: October 10, 2008, 12:16 pm

Here’s one I wrote in college (lucky for me I have no interest in public office):

The Miracle of Transliteration

Jesus offered bread to the Disciples;
He watched each ambitious eye,
Each plotting brow,
Each eager palm–
He frowned and spake:
“Eat me.”

Comment from jwpaine
Time: October 10, 2008, 12:46 pm

But unlike Obama, I never got any better.

Comment from Lemur King
Time: October 10, 2008, 1:37 pm

Apo –

Let’s see, Stephenson’s latest… Anathem?

One thing I’ve always loved about his writing is how the topic usually addresses a very real phenomenon in the world. I’m not sure if it has enough “connectedness” for his vehicle of examination (presumably of some contemporary topic) to have much appeal.

His other books – Diamond Age (nanotech), Snow Crash (cybertech), Zodiac (bioterror), Crytonomicon (privacy), Interface (conspiracy), Cobweb (bioterror), Baroque Cycle (renaissance)… they were all very real phenomena and could be investigated in the frame of real life. I don’t see how an alien civilization will convey a conceptual idea quite as effectively without coming across like an old Star Trek “There’s a lesson here for you if you only pay attention to our superior wisdom” episode.

What did you not like about it?

Pingback from Not Getting It « Liberty Girl
Time: October 14, 2008, 11:22 am

[…] begins at home, Barry.  Let’s see your profits from that ghostwritten piece of dreck donated directly to an aid organization.  We’ll even let you choose which one. […]

Pingback from Odds and ends « Mrs. Peel’s Words of Wisdom
Time: January 25, 2009, 12:33 pm

[…] No, seriously, the red man/get ahead man thing WAS a joke, right?  No one would seriously read something like at a presidential inauguration, would they?  Obama had to be embarrassed by that puerile third-grade stuff, right?  Right? […]

Pingback from S. Weasel
Time: September 24, 2009, 7:00 pm

[…] Once more, for laughs, one of only two pieces of literature known for sure to be written by Obama himself: Under water grottos, caverns Filled with apes That eat figs. Stepping on the figs That the apes Eat, they crunch. The apes howl, bare Their fangs, dance, Tumble in the Rushing water, Musty, wet pelts Glistening in the blue. […]

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