Thursday, January 18, 2007

The written word

So on some stupid fooball game recently, a woman was wearing a shirt that said "Fuck the Eagles," and FOX broadcasted it, and across America hundreds of self-righteous drips with sticks up their asses called and wrote in with their mealy-mouthed, smug complaints.

Listen, people: if you see or hear the word "fuck" on TV, and you feel the need to actually make the effort to contact the TV station, or anyone else you think may have authority to dictate what you shouldn't hear or see --- then you are living a shallow, sheltered, pale imitation of life.

Instead of writing an angry letter, go watch a video report about a third-world country. Study up on the Holocaust. Volunteer at a soup kitchen. Volunteer for the armed forces. Ride-along with an EMT crew. I think you'll find that there are about a trillion things in the world more important than you accidentally reading the word "fuck."

You stupid fucking idiot.


Ahem. Here is a meme that Samurai Frog did, and as we both know, we regularly steal memes from one another.

1) One book that changed your life.
It's a play, but what the hell, plays are books. "No Exit," by Sartre. The trifecta of this play, Miguel de Unamuno's novella Mist, and Luigi Pirandello's play "Six Characters in Search of an Author" changed my life in tenth grade. I was introduced to meta-text, irony, and most important of all, existentialism. I became the person, the type of thinker, that I remain to this day.

2) One book that you’d read more than once.
I believe I have mentioned this before on this blog, but there is no scene in Joseph Heller's Catch-22 which I can read and then not want to continue on the next scene, and the next, to the end. One of the best books of all time and one of my top five favorites.

3) One book you’d want on a deserted island.
Frog mentions, astutely, that one would probably want a survival guide of some sort, but I'm thinking this meme is intended to deal with literature or at least sequential non-fiction. Anyway, this is a tough one, but maybe I'd take Shakespeare's collected works. That way, if I ever got back to civilization, my memorization of the Bard's entire oeuvre could wow the ladies. (Form an orderly line, girls!)

4) One book that made you laugh.
Well, again, Catch-22, but in the interest of not repeating answers, I'd have to say (picking one of the many hilarious Bertie and Jeeves novels nearly at random) Bertie Wooster Sees It Through, by P.G. Wodehouse.

5) One book that made you cry.
Ethel and Ernest, an autobiographical graphic novel by Raymond Briggs. Every damn time. I don't think I've ever cried at any pure text books.

6) One book you wish you’d written.
The Firm, by John Grisham. I don't want to take anyone's art, but I'll take anyone's cash cow. Come to think of it, Harry Potter and Whatever the First Book Was Called.

7) One book you wish had never been written.
The Koran, of course.

8) One book you’re currently reading.
Like Frog, I read several books at once. Right now I'm listening to Moby-Dick on CD. It requires a hell of a lot of attention but it's incredibly rewarding.

9) One book you’ve been meaning to read.
I have a very, very long list of non-fiction books I want to read, but even at my rate, I'll never get around to them all. Every time I knock off two or three, I get all enthused about some new titles and put five or ten more on the list (just like my Netflix queue). But I really ought to read Plutarch's Lives.

1 comment:

NYC Educator said...

I guess I'm gonna have to take a look at those Jeeves novels. I loved the Masterpiece Theater series with Fry and Laurie, and it's remarkable that the same guy who played Wooster could now be House.

And if you don't watch House, you ought to.