Some great and thoughtful writing about a less-than-classy subject. The writing is unfortunately hampered by the concept - the history of wrestling thSome great and thoughtful writing about a less-than-classy subject. The writing is unfortunately hampered by the concept - the history of wrestling through those who have died is a great idea in concept, but leaves the work disjointed and forced....more
"This book is dense. It took me two hours to read. It’s packed with “HOW.” Enough “HOW” that it really will get a special spot next to my computer, mu"This book is dense. It took me two hours to read. It’s packed with “HOW.” Enough “HOW” that it really will get a special spot next to my computer, much like how Strunk and White used to sit just within my reach.
You don’t START with this book. You start with Halvorson. Then you read Kissane. And then, if you can handle the excitement, you turn to the most important part of the book: the appendix, where Erin talks about all of the other great resources, and then you get your boss to order all of the books that sound interesting, and then you get excited to read them, and then you realize the hidden benefits of this book.
That it’s a guide for both “how to do the job” and “how to further your knowledge.” And, in turn, the field.
No kissing ass here, and no hyperbole: this book is one of the good ones. Short. Sweet. Fantastic. Some books make you smarter. This one makes you better. Go read it."
"I love great writing. I worship at the altar of Steinbeck, always searching for beautiful prose. And for that reason, I’ve always found a lot of enjoyment in FreeDarko – basketball writing with a literary slant.
With a joy for the game unlike any other. With passion. With soul.
The Free Darko collective’s first book (FreeDarko Presents: The Macrophenomenal Pro Basketball Almanac) was sublime. But combine that with the history of America’s most beautiful game, illuminate it with Jacob “Big Baby Belafonte” Weinstein’s illustrations, and you’ve got a masterpiece."...more
Excerpt from "What I've Been Reading - Eating the Dinosaur": "Eating the Dinosaur, however, is different. It still follows the same patterns as KlosterExcerpt from "What I've Been Reading - Eating the Dinosaur": "Eating the Dinosaur, however, is different. It still follows the same patterns as Klosterman's first essay collection, but it's done in a way that's both researched and filled with wisdom. These are no longer the essays of a college pop culture argument, but an almost Gladwell-ian look at the parts of pop culture that shape us.
It boils down to this: where Sex, Drugs and Cocoa Puffs was a drunken romp through irrelevancy, Eating the Dinosaur is a buzzed discussion during after-work drinks.
Klosterman seems more grown up, is what I'm trying to get at. Thankfully. Because he's better served that way." ...more
"As a Web guy whose exposure to HTML and CSS has come exclusively from the routine hacExcerpt from "What I've Been Reading - HTML5 for Web Designers."
"As a Web guy whose exposure to HTML and CSS has come exclusively from the routine hacking of free WordPress templates, HTML5 for Web Designers dives into the subject at my level - highlighting the changes and features of code that could change how the Web is organized and developed. Even better, it does so in a way that's akin to the 'spreading the gospel' model of Web talk - 100% devoted to letting the reader understand the code.
Don't get me wrong - it's not going to make my mom understand Web development.
That being understood, it's a wonderful look inside the mind of a development evangelist; Keith's knowledge takes a 900-page slog of a standards guide and boils it down to the 80-some pages you'll actually need to read.
Because, you see, developers don’t aim to make people feel dumb. At least, not as long as we're willing to listen and make a concerted effort to understand."...more
An important book on testing and usability that's chock full of real-world examples. That being said, I found myself skimming some of the sections thaAn important book on testing and usability that's chock full of real-world examples. That being said, I found myself skimming some of the sections that have been covered in depth by other experts. Three stars only because I was never really engaged....more
"...Reading and literature are as much a part of my personality as try-too-hard sarcasm; my upbringing was framed by bookshelves, my preferences dictated by others' words. And everything I loved about books peaked over two year's worth of Steinbeck - I read The Grapes of Wrath and East of Eden and Tortilla Flat and Travels With Charley and fell in love with Salinas and Steinbeck and everything he stood for: great literature, themes and message that struck at the heart of human emotion.
The Red Pony, a novella from the early days of Steinbeck's canon, fits under all three categories - great literature, great themes and a great message; a quick overview of the life cycle as viewed through the eyes of a young farm boy.
But, let's be honest - I could gush about Steinbeck for hours, using as many fancy words as I could think of, filling my sentences with adjectives until they buckled under the strain. I won't - you're welcome - except to say The Red Pony, unlike Tortilla Flat and The Pearl (which are admittedly superior works) captures Steinbeck's tendency toward realism and human suffering better than any of his other short works."...more
"Aside of a fantastic story by Anthony Doerr (“Memory Wall,” about a device that reaches in and saves memories for those slowly suffering from dementia), and Chris Adrian’s “The Black Square” (which delves into a cool hyper-local science fiction about a cultish black hole with a story no one understands), the general tone of the collection is simply a little too pessimistic.
No one had a happy outlook for the future – no one was convinced that things could be stable in 2025, let alone better. I don’t say this as a blind optimist – listen, I’ve read The Grapes of Wrath and The Road, and I understand that great works of fiction can be absolute downers – but as a person who expects more variety in a collection of stories from an imprint that’s known for off-beat stories.
It’s easy to look into the future and predict doom. It’s as simple as opening up the front page and figuring out what some fringe crazies are “sky-is-falling” about today."...more
"There was a lot to like in the McSweeney’s books, especially The Better of McSweeney’s. Kevin Brockmeier gives us a short story about a giant ceiling that descends upon the earth. Glen David Gould writes about a murdering circus elephant. Judy Budnitz muses upon a mother who is afraid of going to the doctor and her two daughters who end up taking her there – and ultimately covering for her. And A. M. Homes shows us that some people are really as unlikable as they seem.
The most amazing story I read this month, though, was from Dan Chaon called “The Bees.” In the story, a man’s long forgotten past slowly creeps back to the surface - a former girlfriend, a forgotten child. In the present, the man’s married again with another child, living out a sort of utopia after a hard life of alcoholism and mistakes. Except for one thing: the past comes back to haunt him.
Wow. Find this story and read it. “Amazing” doesn’t do it justice – it’s haunting, indeed. When I finished the story, I couldn’t go on. I was stunned. Numb. Startled by how good it was, unwilling to forge ahead and soil the memory of what has become one of my favorite short stories of all time. It’s horrific – a twist that causes you to both recoil and smile, a perfect ending to an engaging story."...more