Sunday, September 28, 2008


I've always said, if there really was such a thing as a Star Trek like holodeck, I'd probably never leave it.

There was a time in my teens when I would have just inhabited Middle-Earth.

I recently upgraded to "The Works" with cable, so that is a bit of a time wasting danger. There is a plethora of movies that I never had access to before. But just like when I go into a video store like Westside Video, I'm stumped by what I want to watch. Movies that I almost went to the theater to see, suddenly aren't appealing.



Got to give Mel credit for attempting unusual things.

I must be really jaded, because all the blood letting wasn't as bad as I expected.

It was interesting the way he did it, though.

A slow, in real time sacrifice, from the victim's viewpoint, looking upside down as the knife descends, eviscerates, lifting the still beating heart, then the axe descending, the rolling of the horizon as the head comes off.

Umm, Mel.

You got a problem. You seem to really like this kind of thing. Whipping, evisceration, and other such tortures seem to be a theme in your movies. Makes me wonder if you wear a hair-shirt in real life (you really must be punished, you bad boy).

I said I was jaded, but I pretty much cringed. Won't be recommending it to my wife.

Anyway, the rest of the movie could just as easily been called, "A Run Through the Jungle."

There was a real Peril's of Pauline element to the wife in the deep hole, pregnant, struggling for food and water, then a flood, and then...gasp, a baby being born in the flood, holding the baby and the child over the water...and on and on.

Oh, and the son's 'native' getup was just too cute for words. A little Aztec cherub.

I think Mel missed his calling as a silent film director. He must have given directions to the inhabitants of the city something like this: "O.K. Look really, really evil and degenerate."

The evil, sly, crafty looks of the 'king' and the 'priest' weren't exactly subtle either.

I liked the arrival of the white man at the end, though, signaling the doom of the Aztecs.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

New Books. Books! More Books!

I've decided to really go for new books. They did very well this summer, and I'm getting lots of folks in the door who are bookish.

I started to reorder most of the books I'd sold over the summer, and began to realize that almost all of them fell under the rubric of "cult" books -- not in the evil, fundamentalist "cult" sense, but in the old 'pop culture favorite' sense. The books that most readers end up reading, that are passed from friend to friend, that have become so much a part of our culture that they are constantly referred to in the media and conversation. Books like On The Road, or The Alchemist, or The Prophet.

Meanwhile, the "best sellers" I brought in because everyone said I should, like "The Shack" or "Breaking Dawn" are just sitting there...4 copies of a Stephanie Meyer book that everyone bought at Costgo.

After I was done reordering, I thought why not keep going that direction -- why not keep bringing in the classics, the perennials, the favorites...?

I plugged "Cool Cult Books" into Google, and up popped an article in The about the biggest 50 cult books.

Funny thing is -- I'd read almost all of them. And I'd also read almost all the books brought up in the comments.

And here I thought I was such an independent thinker. But I read Jonathan Livingston Seagull just like everyone else....

Anyway, plenty of food for thought, and plenty of great books still to bring in. Hopefully, by Christmas I'll have a great, great selection.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Reading or viewing?

Been reading lots of books and comics. Too many to review.

This, I think, is my natural state. Reading.

My T.V. hasn't been turned on much this summer. We switched over the digital a couple of weeks ago, and for a day or so, I had, like, 500 channels. I see ads for shows like True Blood, and I wonder if I should sign up for HBO. I wonder if I should get Netflix; I wonder if I should get Tivo. And biggest of all, a big screen T.V. with all the trimmings.

But....I keep thinking this would be like filling my fridge with donuts and cake and candy and ice cream and telling myself I'll eat only a little. I'll be good. I'll be choosy.

Uh, uh. Gorge city.

As usual, I'll check out the new shows like Fringe. Last year there were a whole bunch I thought I'd like, but ended up only watching Terminator (Sarah Conner Chronicles). Which I recommend, by the way, much better than you'd expect, and if you guys don't start watching it, it will go the way of Firefly and every other good S.F. that people only seem to discover after they've been cancelled.

Finished another Jack Reacher novel, Nothing to Lose, by Lee Child. Seems to get more and more ridiculous in getting the protagonist in interesting situations. Read a couple Stephen Greenleaf 'Tanner' novels; Death Bed and State's Evidence. Hit Parade by Lawrence Block. The Secret Servant by Daniel Silva.

I read a bunch of comics, but took them back to the store before writing them down. House of Mystery, Kick Ass, Richard Corben's Lovecraft series, who's title escapes me.

I love Corben's take on things; but then again, the comics include the original Lovecraft stories and poems, which are a whole nother level of weird.

I think what has held me up from blogging here more often is the need I feel for pictures. So....rather than hold off any longer, you get this.

Words not pictures.