Now It Can Be Told

Reading this is like sticking a mixing device in your brain and setting the mixer speed to high. However, it made me want to revisit “Breakfast of Champions,” a book I found too non-sensical when I was a serious high school student. High School and taking things seriously was a long time ago.

Flashbytes

by Kurt Vonnegut – a Kilgore Trout story…

kurt vonnegut kilgore trout Now It Can Be ToldThe premise of the book was this: Life was an experiment by the Creator of the Universe, Who wanted to test a new sort of creature He was thinking of introducing into the Universe. It was a creature with the ability to make up its own mind. All the other creatures were fully programmed robots.

The book was in the form of a long letter from The Creator of the Universe to the experimental creature. The Creator congratulated the creature and apologized for all the discomfort he had endured. The Creator invited him to a banquet in his honor in the Empire Room of the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City, where a black robot named Sammy Davis, Jr., would sing and dance.

And the experimental creature wasn’t killed after the banquet. He was transferred to a virgin planet instead. Living…

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Lest we forget

I tend to avoid most of the pomp and ceremony that tries to illustrate the depth of feelings on 11 November, Veteran’s Day, celebrated in the US and other countries under the names Veteran’s Day, Armistice Day, and Remembrance Day. The overall idea is/was that the Great War, WWI, was to end on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918. And that was to be it. No more wars. Obviously, not.
The video here is not in celebration of that day; it celebrates instead ANZAC day, celebrated as a public holiday on 25 April in Australia and New Zealand. So why do I reblog this several days later? I believe it addresses the universality of feeling about the horrors and senselessness of war that is not tied to a specific day or nationality or time of the year. As a US Army veteran of the Vietnam Conflict, it is easy to place all the memories in the US experience basket and downplay the contributions made by the individuals, civilian and military (conscription) of other nations.
As I watched this I immediately defaulted to my experience in Vietnam and I remembered the Australian and New Zealand soldiers serving alongside the US. Also, the South Korean soldiers. Canadian Allies were there and stayed after the “end” of the US experience as their nation attempted to assume a peacekeeper role. The Philippines contributed components that included civilian support. The Thai and Lao governments contributed many types of forces that were involved in something today called a “shadow war.” The Republic of China (Taiwan) played a role as did Cambodia, always a fragmented nation that was to pay a heavy price after the US left the region.
Two other countries of the time contributed heavily; North Vietnam and South Vietnam. It amazes me that there are articles found on the web that ignore South Vietnam as a major contributor. North Vietnam is an acknowledged belligerent but when tallying the forces fighting with South Vietnam, I have noticed “the South” omitted. As a father of several Vietnamese-American children (and husband of their mother), I feel sad about this failure to acknowledge the contributions of a group of people, civilian and military, who died for an ill-defined cause.
All of this goes back to the universality of everyone caught up in this final, insane activity that occurs when diplomacy fails. Remembrances can occur anywhere and anytime. There is plenty of insanity to go around. And it continues.
So, I reblog this. Lest We Forget. Thanks, Angie Trafford.

AngieTrafford

We will always remember.

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Samurai Links

I like the discovery possibilities that come with Amazon Samples. Most times they are good value and since I am in one of my positive moods (inspired by this sample) I won’t waste my time (or yours) with going into the negatives. Except for one and it is my fault, not Amazon’s. In a fairly short period of time, my unread samples list rivals my currently-I-am-really-going-to-read-this-next list. To attack this problem, I dedicate my Kindle Paperwhite to (mostly) Sample reading and I’ll leave the lengthy stuff to the Kindle apps on my laptop. Facing strident phone calls from my friendly Yamaha dealer to report for periodic service with my bike, I packed my book reader along with the intent to get through several samples during a lengthy bike service procedure.

Daughter of the Samurai by Etsu Sugimoto made my enforced confinement at the dealership too short. I was amazed that I finished the sample and still had time to return and review several points that provided me new information while making me smile at the skill and adroitness of the author’s expression. This was a great start to the day. I am unfamiliar with Japan, its history, its language and its culture. Anything I know about Japan comes from cursory observations provided by mass media which means that this sample provided a culture shock, although a pleasant one.

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Daily Prompt:  Egg

A poem in praise of the egg!
Eggs are cool because they take little to no preparation. A delight for the cooking challenged (such as myself). Drop them in boiling water for not too long and I have portable snacks. Think of the pioneers of old who, according to folklore, carried around something called beef jerky, some form of meat that delighted dentists and other tooth repair technicians.
Cooked or uncooked, eggs have been a staple employed in causes related to social and political dissent. Unfortunate. For this, I follow my parents’ advice, “Don’t throw your food.”
Not many foods give you the chance to apply DIY measures to improve the food as far as health. Throw away the yellow.
There are few foods that approach perfection, this might be one.
Apologies for the following PUNishment but in closing:
This is no yolk (see above)! Come out of your shell! And I promise to not egg you on with similar rants.

The Bag Lady

To differ I beg

On the fate of the egg

It didn’t used to be fine

And it was declined

By some in nutrition

Made eggs their mission

Cholesterol laden they say
A sad story for hens that lay
These little orbs of delight
With their white and gold bite
New studies reveal
They have certain appeal
No longer forbidden
Or cholesterol ridden
But a healthy protein which you can partake
And much healthier for you than steak.

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/egg/

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Notes On: Hourly History Kindle Books

Hourly History books are just what they say, readers should be able to get through them in an hour. They are highlights of historically significant events and personalities. I am sure academic historians could savage these summaries by pointing out that not all points of view were considered, the lens of cultural sensitivity may not have been attached, and even some dates might be disputed by experts. I hazard a guess that it was not the goal of writers involved with this project to forestall any and all objections by learned authorities. I don’t think such criticisms are fair. Rather, try this. As you go through one of these works, highlight something new you learned. There is a lot of general knowledge stuff here but you may be surprised to discover one or two things you didn’t previously consider. One of the things I found the authors of this project do well: they look at world events going on at the same time and the possible effects of peripheral events on the topic under discussion.

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Admin: Homeschooling and other LCE; A Rant

The following rant is just that, an expression of frustration with events that interfere with my daily schedule and take me away from what I like to do, reading books and commenting on what I have read.

To homeschool or not to … and other Life Changing Events (LCE).

A commonly accepted “truth” is that certain events in our lives; marriage, divorce, giving birth, and retirement will possibly produce profound behavioral changes in daily routines. Having just slammed into two such events; change of employment (almost retirement) and the reality of a failing education system for my son, the tumultuous daily routine I now enjoy makes my days not “routine.”

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My Comments On: Culling my lengthy TBR list – second attempt

This is a sad and anxiety producing post about a book junkie who has created a list of too many TBR novels. Sad because I am one of these junkies also. For the addicted, this post has to be read with caution because Fictionophile lists several links to the ten selections chosen for possible removal. And I had to follow each one. I won’t reveal how many titles migrated to my list.

Fictionophile’s list comes from Goodreads. My addiction is to a site called Instafreebies which further links to author mailing lists and other blogs which offer collections of free books. How can I resist free? A positive note is that many of the books I get from Instafreebee are novellas or short stories. A negative note as far as TBR list expansion is that this weekend I found nineteen titles to download. (But they were free!!)

This is an interesting post to read and commiserate with. Read to the end for a surprising conclusion which might make you laugh out loud.

Shame on you. You shouldn’t laugh at the addicted.

Fictionophile

Lost in a Story began this idea for blog posts as a way to edit a growing to-be-read list.  You take your Goodreads TBR list, sort by ascending date added, and look at the oldest 5-10 items on your list.  If you haven’t read them by now, are you likely to? Why or why not?

I began using Goodreads in September of 2012.  I was not overly successful in my first attempt at culling my TBR list, so I hope I’ll have better results this time.

I’ve reread the Goodreads blurbs for each of the following and based my decision on the Goodreads rating and whether the blurb still piqued my interest.

My second ten oldest titles on my Goodreads TBR

The last winter of Dani Lancing” by P.D. Viner (Goodreads rating 3.34)

A psychological thriller that I could skip. REMOVE


You’re mine now ” by Hans Koppel  (Goodreads…

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