Monday, July 19, 2021

day 20,027

work, mowed lawn, cat food, flowers.

Sunday, July 18, 2021

Day #20026

 cleared out the corner dead tree in joanne's yard. met matt, ran up to northview, five mile, plainfield, northview, and back. i weight one-hundred-ninety pounds. finished first edit of "swatch," chilled at the house after returning from flint. went to meijer with deb. saturday we did huff park and went to flint. neck doesn't hurt too bad. shoulder has been bugging me. 

Wednesday, July 14, 2021

Books Read


Books (and plays) I have read: list started August 5, 2012

August 2012:

The Bell Jar Sylvia Plath, (1963)

The Lord of the Rings JRR Tolkein, (1955)

(f) The Basic Kafka Kafka, (1946)

The Road Cormac McCarthy (2006)

The Beginning and The End Isaac Asimov (1977)

The Mysterious Affair at Styles Agatha Christie (1920)

(f) Narcissus and Goldmund Herman Hesse (1930)

September 2012:

(f)It Can't Happen Here Sinclair Lewis, (1935)

(f)The Secret Adversary Agatha Christie, (1922)

Another Fine Myth Robert Asprin, (1978)

October 2012:

Aurora Dawn Herman Wouk, (1947)

November 2012:

The Body Snatcher and other Classic Ghost Stories Compiled by Michael Kelahan, (2011)

Black Coffee Agatha Christie, (1930)

Tom Sawyer Mark Twain, (1876)

The Unexpected Guest Agatha Christie, (1958)

A Tale of Two Cities Charles Dickens, (1859)

Hickory Dickory Death Agatha Christie, (1955)

Babylon Revisited and other stories F. Scott Fitzgerald, (1960)

December 2012:

The Merchant of Venice William Shakespeare, (~1597)

The Taming of The Shrew William Shakespeare, (~1590)

How the World Works Nicholson Baker, (2012)

All's Well That Ends Well William Shakespeare, (~1604)

As You Like It William Shakespeare, (~1600)

The Comedy of Errors William Shakespeare, (~1594)

January 2013:

Flowers for Algernon Daniel Keyes, (1966)

Android Down Dan Manning, (2010)

Cymbeline, King of Britain William Shakespeare, (~1609)

Bhagavad Gita: A New Translation Stephen Mitchell, (2002)

February 2013:

Measure for Measure William Shakespeare, (~1603)

Hamlet, Prince of Denmark William Shakespeare, (~1602)

March 2013:

King Lear William Shakespeare, (~1606)

The Once and Future King T. H. White, (1939-1958)

A Midsummer Night's Dream William Shakespeare, (~1593)

April 2013:

The Tempest William Shakespeare, (~1623)

The Iliad Homer, (~750 BC)

Anarchism and Other Essays Emma Goldman, (1910)

Pericles, Prince of Tyre William Shakespeare, (~1607)

May 2013:

The Odyssey Homer, (~730 BC)

Republic Plato, (~380 BC)

The Great Gatsby F. Scott Fitzgerald, (1925)

Ashenden or: The British Agent W. Somerset Maugham, (1928)

June 2013:

Through the Looking Glass Lewis Carroll, (1871)

Othello William Shakespeare, (~1603)

The Cubicles of Madness Dan Manning, (2011)

Richard III William Shakespeare, (~1592)

Romeo and Juliet William Shakespeare, (~1591)

Julius Caesar William Shakespeare, (~1599)

July 2013:

Richard II William Shakespeare, (~1595)

1 Henry IV William Shakespeare, (~1597)

2 Henry IV William Shakespeare, (~1598)

Henry V William Shakespeare, (~1599)

1 Henry VI William Shakespeare, (~1591)

2 Henry VI William Shakespeare, (~1591)

3 Henry VI William Shakespeare, (~1591)

Titus Andronicus William Shakespeare, (~1592)

Two Gentlemen of Verona William Shakespeare, (~1593)

The Winter's Tale William Shakespeare, (~1610)

Timon of Athens William Shakespeare, (~1605)

Troilus and Cressida William Shakespeare, (~1602)

August 2013:

Twelfth Night William Shakespeare, (~1599)

Love's Labor's Lost William Shakespeare, (~1588)

King John William Shakespeare, (~1596)

Much Ado About Nothing William Shakespeare, (~1598)

The Merry Wives of Windsor William Shakespeare, (~1600)

Henry VIII William Shakespeare, (~1612)

Antony and Cleopatra William Shakespeare, (~1606)

Coriolanus William Shakespeare, (~1607)

I, Robot Isaac Asimov, (1950)

When You Are Engulfed In Flames David Sedaris, (2008)

The Death of Ivan Ilyich Leo Tolstoy, (1886)

William Shakespeare's Star Wars Ian Doescher, (2013)

September 2013:

Tender Is The Night F. Scott Fitzgerald, (1934)

Ethan Frome Edith Wharton, (1911)

Dune (1/2) Frank Herbert, (1965)

North to The Rails (1/2) Louis L'Amour, (1965)

Me Talk Pretty One Day David Sedaris, (2000)

Barrel Fever David Sedaris, (1994)

Techniques Of The Selling Writer Dwight V. Swain, (1965)

November 2013:

The Art of Critical Thinking Rolf Dobelli, (2013)

Ready Player One Ernest Cline, (2011)

The Best Short Stories of The Modern Age Douglas Angus, editor, (1962)

December 2013:

Oh Brother Christy Potter, (2013)

The Count of Monte Cristo Alexandre Dumas, (1844)

The Geography of Nowhere James Howard Kunstler, (1994)

January 2014:

The Hobbit JRR Tolkein, (1937)

The Inferno (1/2) Dante Alighieri, (~1314)

February 2014:

The Quiet American Graham Greene, (1955)

Free Will Sam Harris, (2012)

March 2014:

The Fellowship of The Ring JRR Tolkein, (1954)

May 2014:

The Two Towers JRR Tolkein, (1954)

Robot Stories Dan Manning, (2014)

June 2014:

Happy Valley (1/3) Patrick White, (1939)

July 2014:

The Return of The King JRR Tolkein, (1954)

Starship Troopers Robert A. Heinlein, (1959)

The Future of the Mind Michio Kaku, (2014)

August 2014:

The Naked and The Dead Norman Mailer, (1948)

Conan #1 Robert E. Howard, (1967)

September 2014:

Metamorphoses Ovid, (8 A.D.)

Intro to Objectivist Epistemology Ayn Rand, (1966)

October 2014:

Star Trek #1 James Blish, (1967)

Pride and Prejudice Jane Austen, (1813)

November 2014:

The Secret History Donna Tartt, (1992)

Stranger In A Strange Land Robert Heinlein, (1961)

December 2014:

The Power and The Glory Graham Greene, (1940)

January 2015:

1984 George Orwell, (1949)

A Portrait of The Artist As A Young Man James Joyce, (1916)

March 2015:

Ulyssess (1/2) James Joyce, (1934)

April 2015:

The Once and Future King T.H. White, (1958)

The Sirens of Titan(1/2) Kurt Vonnegut Jr., (1959)

May 2015:

Sphere Michael Crichton, (1987)

June 2015:

Great Essays edited by Houston Peterson, (1953)

July 2015:

Meditations Marcus Aurelius, (170 to 180 CE)

Dracula Bram Stoker, (1897)

The Complete Works of William Shakespeare, (1594-1623)

Reassess Your Chess Jeremy Silman, (2010)

September 2015:

How the Mind Works Steven Pinker, (1997)

The Elric Saga Part 1 Michael Moorcock, (1984)

October 2015:

Frankenstein Mary Shelly, (1818)

November 2015:

Night Shift Stephen King, (1976)

January 2016:

The Amature's Mind Jeremy Silman, (1995)

February 2016:

From Karamzin to Bunin Carl R. Proffer, (1969)

March 2016:

Cannery Row John Steinbeck, (1945)

May 2016:

The Supreme Doctrine Hubert Benoit, (1955)

June 2016:

Seize the Day Saul Bellow, (1956)

August 2016:

12 Steps to a Compassionate Life Karen Armstrong, (2011)

Anna Karenina Leo Tolstoy, (1877)

September 2016:

The Patchwork Devil Cavan Scott, (2016)

November 2016:

David Copperfield Charles Dickens, (1850)

Metamorphoses Ovid, (8?)

December 2016:

Howard's End E.M. Forster, (1910)

Engaging Pieces Howard Goldowsky, (2007)

The Complete Plays William Shakespeare, (1904)

Bobby Fischer Goes to War Edmonds & Eidinow, (2004)

Robinson Crusoe Daniel Defoe, (1719)

January 2017:

Oliver Twist(+) Charles Dickens, (1837)

The Hitchhiker's Guide to The Galaxy(=) Douglas Adams, (1980)

The Stranger(=) Albert Camus, (1942)

February 2017:

When You Are Engulfed in Flames(+) David Sedaris, (2008)

The Sun Also Rises(+) Ernest Hemingway, (1926)

A Farewell To Arms(+) Ernest Hemingway, (1929)

Of Mice and Men(+) John Steinbeck, (1937)

Death Comes to The Archbishop(=) Willa Cather, (1927)

March 2017:

Cass Timberlane(-) Sinclair Lewis, (1945)

Harry Potter & The Sorcerer's Stone(+) J.K. Rowling, (1997)

Lord of the Flies(+) William Golding, (1954)

April 2017:

For Whom the Bell Tolls(+) Ernest Hemingway, (1940)

Heart of Darkness & other Stories(+) Joseph Conrad, (1899)

May 2017:

Wuthering Heights(+) Emily Brontë, (1847)

June 2017:

Don Quixote(-) Miguel Cervantes, (1605)

July 2017:

A Room With a View(+) E. M. Forster, (1908)

August 2017:

Of Human Bondage(+) W. Somerset Maugham, (1915)

September 2017:

In Cold Blood(+) Truman Capote, (1965)

21 Great Short Stories(=) Lass, Tasman, Editors, (1969)

October 2017:

Family Happiness(=) Leo Tolstoy, (1859)

All The King's Men(=) Robert Penn Warren, (1946)

The Death of Ivan Ilych + Other Stories(+) Leo Tolstoy, (1960)

November 2017:

The American Short Story(=) ed. Calvin Scaggs, (1980)

The Call of The Wild(=) Jack London, (1903)

December 2017:

Orlando(=) Virginia Woolf, (1928)

The Voyage Out(=) Virginia Woolf, (1915)

Night and Day (=) Virginia Woolf, (1919)

Mrs. Dalloway(+) Virginia Woolf, (1925)

January 2018:

Jane Eyre(=) Charlotte Brontë, (1847)

February 2018:

Down and Out in Paris and London(+) George Orwell, (1933)

Why Buddhism is True(=) Robert Wright, (2017)

March 2018:

One Hundred Years of Solituded(=) Gabriel Marquez, (1967)

April 2018:

Crime and Punishment(+) Fyodor Dostoyevsky, (1866)

December 2018:

Moby Dick(+) Herman Melville, (1851)

The Wind in The Willows(=) Kenneth Grahame, (1908)

The Sirens of Titan(-) Kurt Vonnegut Jr., (1959)

The Moon is Down(+) John Steinbeck, (1942)

Mythology(-) Edith Hamilton, (1942)

50 Great Short Stories(+) Milton Crane, ed., (1952)

holy land (+) d.j. waldie, (1996)

December 2018:

The Caine Muniny(+) Herman Wouk, (1951)

January 2019:

The Story of Philosophy(+) Will Durant, (1926)

February 2019:

The Hunchback of Notre Dame(=) Victor Hugo, (1831)

The Canterbury Tales(=) Geoffrey Chaucer, (~1387-1400)

March 2019:

Short Fiction of the Masters(+) Hamalian, Karl, editors (1963)

"The Secret Sharer" and Other Great Short Stories(=) Lass, Tasman, editors (1969)

May 2019:

The Picture of Dorian Gray(+) Oscar Wilde (1890)

August 2019:

The Year of Lear(+) James Shapiro (2015)

A Year in The Life of William Shakespeare(+) James Shapiro (2005)

September 2019:

Far From the Madding Crowd(=) Thomas Hardy (1874)

Ishmael(=) Daniel Quinn (1992)

October 2019:

The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Stories(+) H. P. Lovecraft (1999)

Classics for Pleasure(+) Michael Dirda (2007)

Seven Men(+) Max Beerbohm (1919)

January 2020:

Hercule Poirot, Complete Short Stories(+) Agatha Christie (2013)

February 2020:

The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas(+) Gertrude Stein (1932)

March 2020:

Other Voices, Other Rooms(=) Truman Capote (1948)

Jane Eyre(+) Charlotte Brontë, (1847)

May 2020:

Essays(+) Michel De Montaigne (1580)

Anatoly Karpov's Best Games(+) Anatoly Karpov (1996)

Jason and the Argonauts(+) Apollonius of Rhodes (3rd century BC)

June 2020:

The Upanishads(+) trans. Eknath Easwaran (ancient/1987 translation)

The Waste Lands and Other Writings(+) T. S. Eliot (2002)

July 2020:

The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde(+) Robert Louis Stevenson (1886)

The Power of Now(+) Eckhart Tolle (1997)

Sense and Sensibility(=) Jane Austin (1811)

The Island of Doctor Moreau(+) H. G. Wells (1896)

Crime and Punishment(+) Fyodor Dostoyevsky (1866)

August 2020:

Happiness is An Inside Job(+) Sylvia Boorstein, Ph.D. (2007)

It's Easier Than You Think(+) Sylvia Boorstein, Ph.D. (1995)

Don't Just Do Something, Sit There(+) Sylvia Boorstein, Ph.D. (1996)

Pay Attention, For Goodness' Sake(+) Sylvia Boorstein, Ph.D. (2003)

September 2020:

Prometheus Rising(=) Robert Anton Wilson (1983)

The Secret History(++) Donna Tartt (1992)

The Razor's Edge(+) W. Somerset Maugham (1944)

November 2020:

Ulysses(1/2) James Joyce (1922)

December 2020:

The Voyage Out(++) Virginia Woolf, (1915)

January 2021:

Mrs. Dalloway(+) Virginia Woolf, (1925)

February 2021:

Tropic of Cancer(+) Henry Miller, (1934)

The Autobiography of Malcolm X(+) Alex Haley, (1965)

March 2021:

Dracula Bram Stoker, (1897)

Lives Plutarch, (2nd Cent. AD)

April 2021:

Best American Essays 2000 ed. Alan Lightman, (2000)

The Bell Jar Sylvia Plath, (1963)

June 2021

Burmese Days, George Orwell (1934)

July 2021:

The Clergyman's Daughter George Orwell (1935)

Keep the Aspidistra Flying, George Orwell, (1936)

Thursday, July 01, 2021

writing exercise about stan the elf, unedited

 brutus, my cat, is looking out the slider window at the night backyard. the night backyard is a magical place. i assume it is. i am inside now, so how can i be sure? I cannot be sure that the nighttime backyard is a magical place. i almost hope not, because then i would be missing out on wonderful and whimsical backyard magic. elves and fairies and whatnot, lurking around cutely under bushes and toadstools. there were no toadstools back there earlier, but i have no proof that there are none there now. if there are elves and fairies in the backyard, would one of them be a malcontent? would it be sullen and contrary? would his name be stan, stan the elf, and would he refuse to partake in the elvish highjinx they get up to back there? running around and laughing and doing whatever elves do in their spare time, which i can only assume is all the time, because they probably do not have jobs in the conventional  sense. would stan be bored with the entire thing, and decide to leave the backyard? would elves remain in one backyard only? wouldn’t they just wander around, ignoring property lines altogether? and would they only frolic in suburban yards? would they go downtown, under cars in parking garages? to street festivals, dodging human feet as the humans with wristbands wander to and fro between the port-a-johns and the beer garden? stan would be there, wondering what it is all about. under a wheeled dumpster, listening to two cops discuss overtime, or their domestic situations, or politics. the people getting louder and louder under the influence of their beers, and stan would wonder what it is all about. he would find a side-street, and overhear a couple arguing about a third person. one of them is jealous, and stan feels lonely. none of the other elves are interesting to talk to. they just giggle and laugh and frolic around. mindless idiots. elves are, if compared to humans, always naturally high. they have no needs or wants to speak of. they are like animals, really, not thinking, only casting tiny spells on humans, and playing tricks, and mostly frolicking at night and having loads of sex. they are all in great shape, disease free, eternally young, usually naked, and randy for all eternity. but not stan. poor stan. he just doesn’t get it. he will wear pants, thank you very much. he thinks too much. even through the naturally high haze of his tiny elf mind, he can tell that this all does not add up. he flicks his wings sullenly and flies up into a tree. and i suppose it is here that i should introduce a second character. 

Wednesday, June 30, 2021

poemling one

i see a thousand spaceships crawl across the evening sky
but none of them are interested and they keep passing by

i see a million zombies with their smartphones lumber by
but none of them are interested and they keep passing by

Tuesday, June 29, 2021

method thirteen

the utilization of method thirteen cannot be comprehended by the mind of modern man.

Friday, June 25, 2021

"no one," says this person.

  i suppose i could begin some story, but my stories are crap, but if you must have a character, we will have this person do things. this person will say things as well. this genderless, completely unidentifiable person will come alive, and you will help me, gentle reader, bring this person to life. because this person has feelings. this person was brought up in a certain way, and this person believes certain things because of and in spite of this upbringing. this person is, of course, frustrated with life. how can this person be otherwise? look at the world. you have seen it, dearest and most cherished reader. you have seen it. the world. this person finds this person stuck on this world. a planet, to be sure, with gravity, filled with other people. who said "hell is other people?" wonders this person. i know what you are thinking, dearest reader. "i could be that person!" you think, reading on. or the author could be this person. but no, you and i are not that person. we are simply the writer and the reader. no. this person is real, and we will make this person real now.  think about this person. crystallize this person in your mind. make this person solid and real. eyes like that. hair just that way. a certain walk. a way of hold the head. there. now this person is real. now this person must do something. doing is more exciting than not doing. and it is excitement we want. we shall have it, my most loyal and trustworthy reader. we will do this together. it is incredibly important for this person to do something. this person does not exist in a vacuum. this person has a friend. this person and friend will have conversations. but they cannot hang in space having a dialog with no setting. they must be in a place, so we will make them a place. this place has a certain amount of trees and foliage; it is a very green place. you may put a fountain in it if you like, or not. perhaps there is a commercial or retail space a few streets down. but they are walking in this green space, this person and the friend. they are walking near the fountain. a car goes by, and finally the friend says, and this is the first dialog, so pay attention: "should i say something profound?" the friend says. "go ahead," this person said. "say something profound." they walk along for awhile, and the friend says, "i think it has all been said." this person says, "that is profound, it it's own way." i think i should explain here that my characters will be speaking in contractions, although i do not like to use them in my prose. this is a writing tradition to which i have kept true for over an entire page. sorry to interrupt. a car goes by. this person waves, because this person knows the person driving the car. "who was that?" the friend asks. "no one," says this person.

Sunday, June 06, 2021

Let’s trouble gods and / Keep them in their places

Let’s trouble gods and
Keep them in their places—
Let’s ask them for
Uncomplicated things—

Let’s bother them with prayers
Let’s all distract them
With our tiny needs—

There are so many of them
In the heavens—
And twice as many
Dwell beneath our feet—

They sit there in the everlasting
They suffer in the everlasting
Heat —

I pity them in their
Eternal Sunshine—
I weep for them in their
Eternal Flame—

Let’s ask them for
An awkward-worded favor—
Let’s genuflect and kneel
and bow our heads—

For they ignore us
While we go on living—
And punish us as soon as
We are dead— 

Tuesday, April 13, 2021

tail-end dream fragment

 woke up, and this went through my head:

"All beliefs must be believed /

Or else the world has been deceived."

Sunday, March 28, 2021

Most Ironic Advertising I've Seen in Awhile

 So we were watching a murder show, and there is an actual commercial for Life Insurance, and in the commercial, the wife is talking the husband into buying life insurance. And the plot of the murder show we are watching pretty much matches that setup exactly.

Saturday, January 30, 2021

the portfolio of time

"...peering with steady blue eyes into the portfolio of time."

Henry Miller Tropic of Cancer

Sunday, January 24, 2021

Tropic of Cancer -- Henry Miller quote

 "Lawyer, priest, doctor, politician, newspaperman—these are the quacks who have their fingers on the pulse of the world. A constant atmosphere of calamity. It's marvelous. It's as if the barometer never changed, as if the flag were always at half-mast. One can see now how the idea of heaven takes hold of men's consciousness, how it gains ground even when all the props have been knocked from under it. There must be another world beside this swamp in which everything is dumped pell-mell. It's hard to imagine what it can be like, this heaven that men dream about. A frog's heaven, no doubt. Miasma, scum, pond lilies, stagnant water. Sit on a lily pad unmolested and croak all day. Something like that, I can imagine." 

Tropic of Cancer — Henry Miller

About Me

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I am the author of 5 books: Android Down, Firewood for Cannibals, The Cubicles of Madness, Robot Stories, and most recently, Various Meats and Cheeses. I live and write in Michigan. My website is at