A tongue-in-cheek book that purports to deal with an awkward but critical issue, "How to Poo on a Date", scooped an award for the Oddest Book Title of the Year on Friday. The winner of the Diagram Prize, awarded annually since 1978 and based on a public vote since 2000, beat out other titles including "Are Trout South African?" and "Working-Class Cats: The Bodega Cats of New York City". The prize, which carries no cash award, is run by The Bookseller, a British-based business magazine and website for the book industry...
Tag Archives | Books
Christmas has come and gone but the gifts just keep coming. My family and friends plundered my wish list, handing me a healthy stack of the DVD’s and books that I look forward to at this time of year. I love films and reading so I didn’t think I could be happier with my haul.
However, another unexpected gift arrived which reminds me of Christmases long-past when the only thing I wanted was the newest game for my Atari 2600. Arriving with the promptness of a flying reindeer, it was just announced that the Internet Archive is making a place for playable, online games from the original, classic home consoles like the Atari 2600 and the Odyssey 2.
Here’s the scoop from PC MAG.
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Feeling nostalgic? We’ll let archivist Jason Scott explain:
“For a generation of children, the most exciting part of a Christmas morning was discovering a large box under the tree, ripping it apart, and looking at an exciting, colorful box promising endless video games.
I highly doubt that reading this post will do too much to you, but new research shows that reading novels definitely does change your brain with lingering effects. Carol Clark-Emory reports for Futurity:
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After reading a novel, actual changes linger in the brain, at least for a few days, report researchers.
Their findings, that reading a novel may cause changes in resting-state connectivity of the brain that persist, appear in the journal Brain Connectivity.
“Stories shape our lives and in some cases help define a person,” says neuroscientist Gregory Berns, lead author of the study and the director of Emory University’s Center for Neuropolicy. “We want to understand how stories get into your brain, and what they do to it.”
Neurobiological research using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) has begun to identify brain networks associated with reading stories. Most previous studies have focused on the cognitive processes involved in short stories, while subjects are actually reading them as they are in the fMRI scanner.
One suspects that more than a few disinfonauts have perused a copy of The Anarchist Cookbook since it was first published in 1970. It quickly became something of an underground classic, but author William Powell later disavowed it. On the book’s Amazon page he is quoted as saying:
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During the years that followed its publication, I went to university, married, became a father and a teacher of adolescents. These developments had a profound moral and spiritual effect on me. I found that I no longer agreed with what I had written earlier and I was becoming increasingly uncomfortable with the ideas that I had put my name to. In 1976 I became a confirmed Anglican Christian and shortly thereafter I wrote to Lyle Stuart Inc. explaining that I no longer held the views that were expressed in the book and requested that The Anarchist Cookbook be taken out of print. The response from the publisher was that the copyright was in his name and therefore such a decision was his to make – not the author’s.
Mike Tyson isn’t just a former champion heavyweight boxer, he’s also a heavyweight reader, too. What are some of the books on Tyson’s nightstand right now? Napoleon’s letters to Josephine, a little Kierkegaard, and more than a few volumes devoted to Alexander the Great.
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I read everything about Alexander, so I downloaded “Alexander the Great: The Macedonian Who Conquered the World” by Sean Patrick. Everyone thinks Alexander was this giant, but he was really a runt. “I would rather live a short life of glory than a long one of obscurity,” he said. I so related to that, coming from Brownsville, Brooklyn.
What did I have to look forward to—going in and out of prison, maybe getting shot and killed, or just a life of scuffling around like a common thief? Alexander, Napoleon, Genghis Khan, even a cold pimp like Iceberg Slim—they were all mama’s boys.
This is the first chapter from Howard Bloom’s new book How I Accidentally Started the Sixties, about which Timothy Leary said,
“This is a monumental, epic, glorious literary achievement. Every page, every paragraph, every sentence sparkles with captivating metaphors, delightful verbal concoctions, alchemical insights, philosophic whimsy, absurd illogicals, scientific comedy routines, relentless, non-stop waves of hilarity. The comparisons to James Joyce are inevitable and undeniable. Finnegans Wake wanders through the rock ‘n roll sixties. Wow! Whew! Wild! Wonderful!”
(This stuff really happened. Several names have been changed to protect me from my attorney. However any lack of resemblance to actual people, living or dead, is solely due to the incompetence of the author.)
It feels a little funny to drag these stories from the depths of memory now that us baby boomers are all supposed to be picking out the patterns for our tombstones, counting our wrinkles, and trying to replicate the secret of Ronald Reagan’s perpetually dark hair.… Read the rest
For sale via Lulu, if you are concerned about getting your money’s worth this holiday season, author/artist Jean Keller’s the Black Book is the only gift you should consider for the book lover in your family:
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Ink used for digital printing is one of the most precious substances in the world. A single gallon of ink costs over four thousand dollars.
However, the price of a book is not calculated according to the amount of ink used in production. A Lulu book of blank pages costs an artist as much to produce as a book filled with text or photographs. Furthermore, as the number of pages increases, the price of each page decreases.
A book containing the maximum number of pages printed entirely in black ink therefore results in the lowest cost and maximum value for the artist. Combining these features, buyers of The Black Book are guaranteed that they are getting the best possible value for their money.
A library copy of popular erotica novel Fifty Shades of Grey tested positive for the herpes virus and cocaine. There are far too many easy jokes I could make about this. Just supply some of your own in the comment section below. Just wash your hands afterward.
Two Belgian university professors decided to apply their knowledge of toxicology screenings to the 10 most borrowed books at the Antwerp library. Each book underwent bacteriology and toxicology tests, and the findings reveal that library books are even more germ-covered than you expected.
While the experts found that all 10 books contained traces of cocaine–enough so that people who touched the books wouldn’t feel the effects, but might test positive for the drug–they also found something pretty gross: Fifty Shades of Grey, your weird aunt’s favorite mainstream erotic series, tested positive for traces of the herpes virus.
Just a quick note to let you know that our friend Greg Taylor over at Daily Grail has a new book available for purchase: Stop Worrying! There Probably is an Afterlife:
Did Steve Jobs have a vision of the afterlife on his death-bed? Does quantum physics suggest that our mind might survive the physical death of our body? How do some near-death experiencers ‘see’ outside of their bodies at a time when they are supposed to be dead?
In Stop Worrying! There Probably is an Afterlife, author Greg Taylor covers all these questions and more. From Victorian seance rooms through to modern scientific laboratories, Taylor surveys the fascinating history of research into the survival of human consciousness, and returns with a stunning conclusion: that maybe we should stop worrying so much about death, because there probably is an afterlife.
Via Mental Floss, literary works that came to us from the other side:
- The Sorry Tale (Pearl Lenore Curran and Patience Worth). Starting in the early 1910s, Pearl Lenore Curran and her friend Emily Grant Hutchings worked the Ouija board together twice a week. On July 8, 1913, Patience Worth made her presence known. According to the frantic spelling across the Ouija board, Patience was born in either 1649 or 1694 “across the sea” and was killed in an Indian raid. When really inspired, the Patience-Pearl duo could spell out about 1500 words an hour, which is how she came to be the author of books including The Sorry Tale and Hope Trueblood.
- God Bless U, Daughter (Mildred Swanson and Mark Twain). Unwilling to let his deceased status slow him down, Samuel Clemens allegedly contacted Mildred Swanson of Independence, Missouri. In the late 1960s, Swanson wrote a book called God Bless U, Daughter, a diary of her planchette conversations with Clemens.