Friday, August 29, 2008
The email pointed out all the new features that the site has; Games, Videos, Character Bios (did you know Oscar the grouch is a Gemini?)Etc.
My favorite section is the video archive of all celebrity guests. Seeing a young Billy Joel, before his third chin, or a pre-dead Johnny Cash singing to Oscar is great. And this ONE is for Susie over at What Was I Thinking.
And this ONE is for Lauren at Gigglepotamus. I am just sorry that it does not include the new man her life, Timm Gunn, even though I think he resembles a muppet.
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
The last time I had to write something even remotely close to a book review was when I was in 11th grade, in Mrs. Bray's English Class, and I had to do a 500 word essay on Hemingway's The Sun Also Rises. It started something like this: "The Sun Also Rises, a book by Ernest Hemingway, is very,very,very, very, very, interesting. I really, really, really,really, liked his use symbolism."
Brad Meltzer, through his publisher and marketing people, made sure I received an advanced copy of his latest novel The Book of Lies. The book is not out in stores until Spetember 2nd. I received my copy on August 9th. I had visions that if I read the book that weekend and sent in my review that,maybe, on the back cover of the store copy dust jacket it would say something like: William from Poop and Boogies. com says "An action packed thriller. A true page turner." But a couple of things prevented a quick read. One, I am a very slow reader. And two, I just started reading a book about the Battle of Gettysburg which, is no big deal because I often read more that one book at a time. Oh, and three, I also have two kids to raise, a wife to spend time with, work to do, Project Runway to watch and Guilder to Frame for it. I'm swamped.
I also wanted the excitement of getting a preview copy to wear off so I could give it a fair review. It took me a few days to even attempt to start it. Then something else happened. General Longstreet did not agree with General Lee's plan for Pickett's charge. I had to finish those chapters in "The Killer Angels" first.
The premise of The Book of Lies is that the weapon that Cain used to murder Abel is never mentioned in the Bible and is lost to history. In 1932 Jerry Siegel's father is killed, a murder that is never solved, as a result Jerry goes on to create Superman, one of the worlds most recognized icons. What could these two crimes have in common?
I know it sounds a little strange and somewhat nerdy. I finally found some pieces of time to actually read the book. I kept a little notebook on me so I could make some notes for my review. Guess what? I did not write down one note. I was immediatley caught up in pacing of the book. The Book of Lies has short chapters, so from a pratical level, for someone who is busy like me, it is very easy to read on breaks, during lunch, or in between innings of the Phillies' games
The main character is Cal Harper, a former federal agent, who now works for a homeless shelter, patrolling the streets helping the needy. One night he finds his father, who he has not seen in 18 years, one the side of the road with a bullet wound in his side. Cal's father quickly garners Cal's help in the chase for world's first murder weapon. Not strange or nerdy at all. It reads like The DaVinci Code but instead of the Holy Grail, the characters seek Cain's murder weapon. And instead of clues being left in DaVinci's paintings, the characters are seeking leads from the works of another creative genius, Jerry Siegel. The Book of Lies is very good.
There is a reason why Brad Meltzer is one of my favorite authors and with this book he proved it again. Meltzer does not tell the story. He lets his characters tell the story. Cal, and Lloyd and Serena and Ellis tell this story.
Go to Brad's website and read more about The Book of Lies, you can even read the first chapter. Then go and get the book and read it and then comeback and tell me what you thought.
Oh and Brad, if you happen to read this review, leave a comment just so I can prove my friend Nilbo wrong.
Monday, August 25, 2008
A couple of weeks later my friend Aly, who reads my blog, told me that her husband's sister is married to Brad Meltzer's roomate from college. I was six degrees separated from one of my favorite authors. That was all the incentive I needed to stalk Brad Meltzer. I sent him another email directing him to my original post and explaining that he and I were practically best friends via his college roomate's wife's brother's wife's highschool friend. He never commented but he did reply saying that he read the post. I was grateful for email but it was not enough to prove to Nilbo I was buddies with a 6 time N.Y Times bestseller.
Some time has passed since then. I am not sure of the exact details (I know that I emailed Brad or commented on his blog a few times) but somewhere along the way I was asked by Brad Meltzer to review his latest book "The Book of Lies." That's right, stalking him has its privledges.
This is me in my best stalker look holding the advanced reading copy.
Here is a picture of the advanced reading copy. See the red circle? That says "Advanced reading copy. Not for resale." Look I even zoomed in on the red circle in the picture below.
And yes, I snickered when I zoomed in that it looks like the book is called Bra Melt.
Needless to say I was very excited to have the oppotunity to review his newest book.
Then I got nervous. What would I write about it? I never have done a review before. What does one say? What if I did not like it? What if Nilbo still doesn't believe me that I kinda know Brad Meltzer.
Oh the pressure.
To Be continued.....
Thursday, August 21, 2008
Lately Maxfield has been requesting that I put ketchup directly ON his fries. He used to want his ketchup in a nice pile next to his fries so he could dip his fries and get the proper ketchup-to-fry ratio. Just like his father.
The past few weeks he wants me to squeeze the ketchup, all willy nilly like, back and forth, directly on his french fries. Some fries have lots of ketchup and some barely have any. I don't know where he learned this behavior. Not from his mother. She likes the little pile of ketchup next to her fries also. Maybe he is just being defiant.
When you eat french fries with ketchup, do you pour the ketchup NEXT to the fries or directly ON to the fries?
Monday, August 18, 2008
I am sure most of you that read this site just thought to yourself, "Well, hell yeah he should split it." except for a select few who may be thinking the "I broke even." rule could take effect here.
And if you answered the above question with a yes, does the wife have the same obligation to the husband if she won some money at Bunco night?
Thursday, August 14, 2008
It was a cyst but the definition for cyst is: An abnormal membranous sac containing a gaseous, liquid, or semisolid substance. I find that definition pretty gross so I refer to it as a "thing".
The dermatologist did not lance the "thing" she had to cut it out of my neck. This left an inch and half gash across the center of the front of my neck, right in front of my adams apple. She had to give me four stitches to keep the wound closed. She said the scar would "fall nicely into the crease of my neck" and should not be visible. I say it is placed nicely at the bottom of my slowly forming second chin.
I had to keep the sutures for a week. During that time, I attended a wedding and knew that people may ask questions about the small zipper staring at them from my throat. I told Lauren I was going to tell each person that asked a different story about what happened.
This is what Icame up with.
"I was held at knife point during a robbery and this is where the knife was held."
"I was choking and Lauren performed and emergency tracheotomy."
"I was running with scissors."
"When I was a kid, my brother shot me in the neck with a BB gun and I finally had the BB removed."
Lauren came up with "You woke up with a bug bite on your neck and it grew and when the doctor took it out it was filled with spider eggs."
At the wedding I only got to use two of my stories. The stitches were not as visible in the dim lit reception hall as I thought they would be.
I had the stitches removed and now I have a small scar which is more visible than the doctor claimed it would be. I need more stories to tell in the event that some one asks.
I have an inch and half scar across the front of my neck, tell me a good story that I can use in case someone asks.
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
Monday, August 11, 2008
We were driving home from the ultra-sound and Lauren said, "Maybe I just can't produce a girl. Maybe there is something genetic that prevents me from having a girl."
I chuckled and said, "Or, maybe, there is something genetic in me that I can't produce a girl."
She smiled. Then she said, "Oh I can get around that."
Wednesday, August 06, 2008
--The gallon size jar of pickled artichoke hearts in the fridge.
--2, 3, 4, times a day someone says "I need to take a nap".
--I am gaining weight
--The fact that I, the anti-pet person, am now cleaning the cat's litter box. Because there is some rare disease, toxoplasmosis (which I am sure some pregnant woman invented), that can come from cat litter. ( I am sure there is a labratory filled with pregnant women looking for rare diseases associated with doing dishes, vacuuming, laundry and mowing the yard as well.)
--The various number of magazines scattered through the house that are dog-eared to pitcures of "cute" decor for a baby's room.
--The phrase and rule "Don't jump on Mommy" is now strictly enforced with the kids...and it now also applies to me as well.