What are you reading?

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Jennifer
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Jennifer »

Found an odd little book in a secondhand store today: 101 Things to do in Wartime 1940, a modern reprint of an old book called 101 Things to do in Wartime, which was originally published in Britain in ... fuck it, if you can't figure that out by yourself I'm not going to tell you.

I bought the book in the same spirit as when I bought those books reproducing various "how to get the most from your rations" advice pamphlets the British government published during the war: Interesting to thumb through as a historical record, but I'm not likely to actually "use" any of the ideas within, because -- thank goodness -- I don't need to know stuff like "how to take two old worn-out pairs of knickers and combine them into a like-new usable pair."

However, I just started thumbing through this "101 things to do" book and, while I still find it unlikely that I, personally, will actually "use" any of the ideas, I probably would've tried a few when I was a kid, since most of it is essentially an arts-n-crafts book explaining how to make various toys, games and puzzles (out of the limited materials available then), particularly toys and games which might pass the time while everyone's sitting through a bomb raid. On the page describing how to make various "disentangle-the-pieces" wire puzzles, it starts by saying "Wire puzzles provide interesting occupation not only for the solver but also for the maker."

Some other how-to things listed on the table of contents: "puzzles in cardboard," "puzzles in wood," "Building model galleons and ships," "bottling fruits and vegetables,"window boxes," "cases for gas-masks," "window ventilation during black-out," "the production of honey," "hay box cooking," "Mushroom growing," and how to raise "rabbits for food."
"Myself, despite what they say about libertarians, I think we're actually allowed to pursue options beyond futility or sucking the dicks of the powerful." -- Eric the .5b
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thoreau
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by thoreau »

I just finished Hidden Figures. It was refreshing to read a book that highlighted diversity in STEM without excusing failure. My daily experience in a diverse and non-elite school is people saying "Well, you know, she got a D, but..." Nobody said that about Katherine Johnson.

http://physicistatlarge.blogspot.com/20 ... ather.html
"saying 'socialism' where normies can hear it is wrapping a bunch of barbed wire around a bat, handing the bat to the GOP, and standing with your head in the strike zone."
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Warren
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Warren »

thoreau wrote: 26 Dec 2020, 13:52 I just finished Hidden Figures. It was refreshing to read a book that highlighted diversity in STEM without excusing failure. My daily experience in a diverse and non-elite school is people saying "Well, you know, she got a D, but..." Nobody said that about Katherine Johnson.

http://physicistatlarge.blogspot.com/20 ... ather.html
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thoreau
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by thoreau »

No. I hate movies based on true stories, because they're never actually based on true stories.
"saying 'socialism' where normies can hear it is wrapping a bunch of barbed wire around a bat, handing the bat to the GOP, and standing with your head in the strike zone."
--Lunchstealer
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D.A. Ridgely
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by D.A. Ridgely »

thoreau wrote: 26 Dec 2020, 15:47 No. I hate movies based on true stories, because they're never actually based on true stories.
All movies are based on true stories given what Hollywood means by "based on" and "true."
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thoreau
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by thoreau »

D.A. Ridgely wrote: 26 Dec 2020, 16:59
thoreau wrote: 26 Dec 2020, 15:47 No. I hate movies based on true stories, because they're never actually based on true stories.
All movies are based on true stories given what Hollywood means by "based on" and "true."
Hey, food fyodor! I see you hacked Ridgely's account!

(Just kidding. I know what you mean.)
"saying 'socialism' where normies can hear it is wrapping a bunch of barbed wire around a bat, handing the bat to the GOP, and standing with your head in the strike zone."
--Lunchstealer
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Hugh Akston
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Hugh Akston »

I mean the book is also based on a true story, but it's way more of a time investment.
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JD
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by JD »

I'm reading Lucky Child, by Loung Ung, a memoir by a woman who came to the US as a child refugee from Cambodia, comparing her life in the US to the life of her sister who stayed in Cambodia. I don't know a lot about Cambodia, beyond a little bit about the madness of the Khmer Rouge, but one of the more sobering aspects is how thoroughly advanced society seems to have been destroyed; the author's family used to be urban, prosperous, educated and international before the war, but by the time the book opens they're living as subsistence-farming peasants living in fear of every army's troops.
I sort of feel like a sucker about aspiring to be intellectually rigorous when I could just go on twitter and say capitalism causes space herpes and no one will challenge me on it. - Hugh Akston
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JD
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by JD »

I started The Fifth Season by NK Jemisin last night. Pretty good so far; I will definitely say she is a punchy, impactful writer. Having read two things by her now, one thing that really stands out is her habit of using the second person in her writing (although I will certainly admit that could be a coincidence of the two things I happen to have read). It makes you sit up a bit, but it also feels a little gimmicky.
I sort of feel like a sucker about aspiring to be intellectually rigorous when I could just go on twitter and say capitalism causes space herpes and no one will challenge me on it. - Hugh Akston
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Kolohe
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Kolohe »

Trying my best to not give anything away, but it’s not gimmicky. (But you do have to get thru the entire series to see why)
when you wake up as the queen of the n=1 kingdom and mount your steed non sequiturius, do you look out upon all you survey and think “damn, it feels good to be a green idea sleeping furiously?" - dhex
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Number 6
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Number 6 »

JD wrote: 13 Jan 2021, 19:45 I started The Fifth Season by NK Jemisin last night. Pretty good so far; I will definitely say she is a punchy, impactful writer. Having read two things by her now, one thing that really stands out is her habit of using the second person in her writing (although I will certainly admit that could be a coincidence of the two things I happen to have read). It makes you sit up a bit, but it also feels a little gimmicky.
I started that one, and set it aside specifically because of the second person thing. It's very high on my list of annoying as hell writing tricks, surpassed only by second person present and Cormac McCarthy's refusal to use punctuation.
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