GordonCole

What are you reading

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1 minute ago, Sgt_Markoff said:

I'm considering: "Doo-dah!: Stephen Foster And The Rise Of American Popular Culture" by Ken Easton

Just for your edification, Jeannie had to get married after going to the Camptown Races with a blackguard, and then she stayed too long at the fair. All her light brown hair had to be cut too, and now she looks like an old nag.

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Those new pop-science books--part of a fairly large trend yes--but can be uneven in quality. Some of them I wouldn't go near because of questionable scholarship so rampant today. Titles like 'A Natural History of a Slice of Wonder Bread" and the like. Any book called 'A Natural History..." (of something) ...treat warily!

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Jeannie had to get married after going to the Camptown Races

I don't remember that episode! Was she followed there by Doctor Beddoes?

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22 hours ago, Dargo said:

Well, I've reading between the lines so much lately that frankly I was starting to get a little paranoid about things.

But after consulting with my doctor, he said that that was quite normal for those who do this, and then handed me a prescription for Xanax.

(...and then once I got that prescription filled, I tried to read that really small print on the back of the bottle)

Never try to read below 4 point typeface, unless you are from the planet, Krypton.

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41 minutes ago, Sgt_Markoff said:

 It can be a labor to pore through my TBR lists and evaluate what title should come next; as well as check prices and availability (I always buy used).

 

Get on the Edward R. Hamilton Bookseller Company website and you will find books that you never even imagined existed to add to your potential lending library, Sgt. Markoff.

As Warren Zevon once said...we buy books in hope that we will live long enough to read them all. Well, he said something like that, but of course the poor boy was being treated for cancer by then so probably was hoping for more time to peruse many tomes.

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21 minutes ago, Sgt_Markoff said:

I don't remember that episode! Was she followed there by Doctor Beddoes?

Nope, I think her new hubby engaged the first Doctor Kervorkian to treat her ailments.

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Warren Zevon is a hero of mine. When told unequivocally by his doctors that he only had six months or so to live, he quipped, "Damn, I guess this means I'm gonna miss the next James Bond film..." ^_^

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I'm currently reading Bing Crosby: Swinging on a Star - The War Years - 1940-1946, the second volume in Gary Giddins' fascinating, well-researched study of Bing's life. 

(No, I don't only read books about Bing because my screen name happens to be "BingFan."  I haven't read a book about Crosby since the first volume, Pocketful of Dreams, about 15 years ago.)

Some might question whether Crosby deserves a multi-volume biography a la Churchill or LBJ.  It's true that he didn't devote his life to dealing with massive and serious political problems, often matters of life and death, that those two world leaders did. 

But if you're interested in the entertainment world, Bing was a world leader for decades.  He had far more charting records than any other artist, 396.  (By comparison, Sinatra had 209, Elvis 149, and the Beatles 68).  As an actor, he was the number-one box office attraction for five years, 1944-48, won a best-actor Oscar for Going My Way, and was nominated twice more.  He was a major network radio star for over 20 years, and headlined TV specials after that.  He raised millions for war bonds during WW II and millions for charities during peace-time.

Even if all that's true, I wondered if it was really necessary to write over 500 pages on just seven years, 1940-46, of Bing's long life.  But I have to say that, in my opinion, author Giddins made the right call.  He's found so much interesting material about Bing that I'm not sure what he should or could have omitted.

So, yes, I do think Bing deserves the multi-volume biographical treatment.  I hope Gary Giddins sees the biography through the last 30 years of Bing's life!

 

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Well said BingFan. Just a remark in passing: I seem to recall my own favorite Bing performance was in Odets' "The Country Girl" co-starring Holden and Kelly. He was very touching as the reforming alcoholic.

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5 minutes ago, Sgt_Markoff said:

Warren Zevon is a hero of mine. When told unequivocally by his doctors that he only had six months or so to live, he quipped, "Damn, I guess this means I'm gonna miss the next James Bond film..." ^_^

My favorite part of that documentary they made about his attempt to finish his last, ostensible album, was when someone in the studio, maybe the sound engineer yelled out to Zevon to give the phrasing a little more oomph, and Warren said something like "I'm dying here, man!"

Finally a proper usage of the phrase...

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Ha. Yea but it is actually quite a decent album as far as I'm concerned. I've had it in my playlist a while now.

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25 minutes ago, Sgt_Markoff said:

Well said BingFan. Just a remark in passing: I seem to recall my own favorite Bing performance was in Odets' "The Country Girl" co-starring Holden and Kelly. He was very touching as the reforming alcoholic.

As much as I like Bing in his Oscar-winning Going My Way role, I think he displays the range of his acting talent more fully in The Country Girl.  It's probably my favorite performance of his, too.

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It was colossal. A real revelation for me, to learn he could do something like that at all.

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Bathroom Peeping Tom Stuns Retirement Home Employee by Dear Abby, written by Jeanne

Phillips originally known as Gabrielle Lipshitz, first written by her mother Abigail Van Buren,

before known as Lydia von Krumholz. I finished God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater by Kurt

Vonnegut a little while ago. I like the covers of the Vonnegut novels and was thinking of

buying a number of them before the publisher changes the cover art. I'll see.

 

P.S. Remember the Beatles had only seven years to be on the charts. 

 

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37 minutes ago, Vautrin said:

Bathroom Peeping Tom Stuns Retirement Home Employee by Dear Abby, written by Jeanne

Phillips originally known as Gabrielle Lipshitz, first written by her mother Abigail Van Buren,

before known as Lydia von Krumholz. I finished God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater by Kurt

Vonnegut a little while ago. I like the covers of the Vonnegut novels and was thinking of

buying a number of them before the publisher changes the cover art. I'll see.

 

P.S. Remember the Beatles had only seven years to be on the charts. 

 

I get the bit about purchasing based on the covers. I kinda dig those H.P. Lovecraft volumes since the cover art is "Ooh-la-la!"

Do the original Dear Abby books have an author photo where Abigail has the wings on her hair helmet look?

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the Penguin editions of classic Graham Greene novels ('Ministry of Fear', 'This Gun for Hire', etc) are the best I've seen in ages. I love that Gestalt style.

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1 hour ago, GordonCole said:

I get the bit about purchasing based on the covers. I kinda dig those H.P. Lovecraft volumes since the cover art is "Ooh-la-la!"

Do the original Dear Abby books have an author photo where Abigail has the wings on her hair helmet look?

I know the original Abbey wrote a few how to books, though I think they were only available

through her column and not in book stores. Yes I remember that hairdo. Her daughter's is

more subdued and even has a lot of grey in it. I didn't buy the book due to the cover, but

it was kind of cool and I thought it would be nice to have others in the same style before

they were changed. I had six of Chandler's novels in the same cover style and then they

went and changed it so I had to get the seventh in the new style. I survived. :)

 

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On 2/7/2019 at 2:42 PM, Sgt_Markoff said:

some time hence, Liam OCasey muttered:

Not so. I certainly respect your selection. E.B. White is a hallowed man of American letters. He's famous for more than just a children's book. If you're a fan of him at all, pick up his essays and nonfiction works. He's like a James Thurber, or an A.E. Milne. Possessing of a wide-raging mind with interests in many topics.

At the risk of disappointing you, Sarge, my reading of Charlotte's Web was not the first step on such a worthwhile literary endeavor. I will be taken part in a local production of a play based upon that novel and thought it best to revisit the original source material prior to the start of rehearsals.

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22 hours ago, BingFan said:

I'm currently reading Bing Crosby: Swinging on a Star - The War Years - 1940-1946, the second volume in Gary Giddins' fascinating, well-researched study of Bing's life.

This one is already on my shelf waiting to be read and your post is tempting me to get to it sooner rather than later. Considering that I read the first volume when it came out way back in 2001, though, I will probably reread that one first.

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Also probably gonna try 'Jealousy' by Allain Robbe-Grillet (or howsoever one pronounces his name).

You remember him, he's that slick lawyer who worked for Rudy Leinecker...

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2 hours ago, Sgt_Markoff said:

Also probably gonna try 'Jealousy' by Allain Robbe-Grillet (or howsoever one pronounces his name).

You remember him, he's that slick lawyer who worked for Rudy Leinecker...

I've been a fan of AR-G ever since I saw Last Year at Marienbad. 

Thanx, Sarge.

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Love PATRICIA HIGHSMITH--- i just read her book "The Blunderer", which was made into a kinder gentler version, as the film: A KIND OF MURDER (2016).

But the book is cold as ice, with a fantastic ending.

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On 2/8/2019 at 4:29 PM, Vautrin said:

...P.S. Remember the Beatles had only seven years to be on the charts. 

 

I assume you're referring to my comparison of the chart histories of Bing Crosby and the Beatles, among others.  You're absolutely right that the Beatles' chart success, 68 records during seven years, is very impressive.  Crosby's chart history (396 records) covered 35 years (1927 to 1962), so he obviously had much longer to build his record.  On average, Crosby (about 11 charting records per year) is only slightly ahead of the Beatles (about 10 per year).

No matter how the numbers stack up, though, I love listening to both Crosby and the Beatles.

On 2/9/2019 at 12:28 PM, LiamCasey said:
  On 2/8/2019 at 1:33 PM, BingFan said:

I'm currently reading Bing Crosby: Swinging on a Star - The War Years - 1940-1946, the second volume in Gary Giddins' fascinating, well-researched study of Bing's life.

On 2/9/2019 at 12:28 PM, LiamCasey said:

This one is already on my shelf waiting to be read and your post is tempting me to get to it sooner rather than later. Considering that I read the first volume when it came out way back in 2001, though, I will probably reread that one first.

I halfway wish that I'd re-read the first volume of the Crosby biography before starting the second one.  In the latter volume, author Giddins doesn't spend any time reiterating the events of the first volume, and while I remember the broad outlines of Bing's earlier life, I'm afraid that I've forgotten much of the detail.  It's not strictly necessary to re-read the first volume in order to enjoy the second.  But if you're patient enough to re-read the first one, it might enhance your appreciation of the second.

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I scored this book free from a kerb in my neighborhood; it was in pristine condition too. I glommed it up for my shelves but skimming through it has not given me the juicy tidbits of back-alley gossip I was hoping for. I'm taking it to a drop-off next week for someone else to enjoy

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Found Carolyn Wells on the Gutenberg website for books that are now in the public domain. She wrote a number of children books, but also has a number of murder mysteries that are actually quite good. 

The Deep Lake Mystery

The Clue

The Luminous Face

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