Monday, July 6, 2009

45,44, 43

Three this week.

Dismantling The Hills: Michael McGriff -Really interesting post-industrial poetry. It captures a lot of the restlessness and feelings of loss as the steady working class society before the Reagan era dissolved. McGriff's economy and ability to turn a phrase is remarkable. I need to find more of his work.

I enjoy poetry, though I don't write much myself. I lack a soul and have a low tolerance for my own pretentiousness. Still, I enjoy picking them apart. Part of the joy of a poem, for me, is the awe in appreciating the energy and force of will that often goes into creating them. The struggle to fit a lot of passion, a lot of poison, into neat, little lines is inspiring and reminds me to pay attention to my own writing.

The U.S. Navy Seal Workout: Andrew Flach -A no-nonsense approach to fitness and health that basically says if you want to get in shape, there isn't a shortcut. Some good ideas and tips for the average joe, including stretches and how much time to dedicate to the process. It's very basic, short on the usual hand-holding and self-esteem building and big on vision. If you can devote an hour to two hours a day and you're not afraid to sweat, the book promises you can turn yourself into something extraordinary.

As Project Captain America is underway, I'm buying into this hook, line and sinker. I'll be doubling my workout times from 25-30 minutes to right at an hour with the hopes of getting them up to two hours eventually. Will this actually happen? Who knows? I'm going to do it anyway. The recent photos of me as in Lederhosen, while a hoot, also reminded me the reaper (don't fear the reaper, right?) is working the drive-thru.

Anyway, we're trying and the book has me thinking about fitness in a positive way.

Salmonella Men On Planet Porno: Yasutaka Tsutsui -More proof that reading foreigners during this hundred book challenge is asking for punishment. Slow moving, strange, but occasionally spell-binding, Tsutsui writes some curious tales, largely about conformity. The translation feels like it's a bit off, but it still works well enough to get the point across.

I like Asian books. At least, to me, it seems riskier than mainstream. I also like the slightly askew cultural imprint. The rules of storytelling are a little different, which can take the story in unusual places. Haruki Murakami is a favorite and I'm willing to read more by Tsutsu --just not right now. It's rewarding, but slow-going.

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