Thursday, June 4, 2009

Books, books, the musical fruit, the more you read, the more you toot

Yeah, I know it's beans and not books, but I couldn't think of a clever title.

Anyway, ever since I got chopped in half (old school Obituary, fuckers!), thereby forcing me to wave goodbye to my career as the gangly cracker towel collector on the end of an NBA bench who receives his annual two minutes of playing time in the fourth quarter of an April blowout before being released to tend bar as a local semi-celebrity back in Militiaville, Idaho -- every team has to have one, check the collective bargaining agreement -- I got sucked into the geeky yet lusty alternate dimension of bookdom. Smart is sexy, no? I believe that my tagger would agree with me.

"Which begs the question, why did she tag you."

Good point, especially since I had to pilfer from the Simpsons for the 387,446th time. An original thinker I am not, but I play a mean game of paper football when not sprawled out on the couch watching DVDs and stuffing my face with Funyuns.

1. Name a few of your favorite books.

In Search of Lost Time, Les Fleurs Du Mal, The Lord of the Rings, Là-Bas, The Complete Poems and Tales of Edgar Allan Poe, Salammbô, The Odyssey and a whole bunch more.

2. Is there an author that you don't like, yet so many people seem to love?

Oh hell, I don't know, probably whomever is slotted in the various top ten sales lists, but since I haven't read the vast, vast majority of them, I cannot say yay or nay without accurately being labeled a dirty, filthy liar or a congressman. What I can say is that I doubt I'd be waving the bloody towel for the Tom Clancys of the world or the circus freaks who churn out various permutations of The Secret Path to Quasi-Mystical Happiness Through Better Self-Osmosis and Feng Shui Vegetarian Cookery. Most of the crap I read was written by people who finished their subterranean rotting decades, if not centuries, ago. Now pass that bitter yet tasty plate of charred animal parts.

3. Name a book to film adaptation that you really like. Name one you think was done poorly.

Bram Stoker's Dracula. Fuck you, it's good [insert own Keanu Reeves joke here if so inclined, his performance isn't a dealbreaker for me] and I liked that Anthony Hopkins played Van Helsing a shade over the top. Vampire lore, death, cleavage, exchanges of bodily fluids, a killer score, fabulous visuals, more death, what's not to love? Okay, zero zombies, but no movie is perfect.

Various Stephen King reimaginings have been mediocre, but for some reason, I still harbor a soft spot for the 1979 cut of Salem's Lot with David Soul, James Mason and young n' frisky Bonnie Bedelia.

4. Where do you buy your books?

The internets, Half Price Books, Old Erie Street before they semi-closed. Of course, the truly expensive ones I simply borrow and horde, keeping them from the rest of you.

5. What genre do you read the most?

Swashbuckling tales of ancient derring-do, defiance in the face of those on the throne and the romancing of sultry babes. You know, history. Et bien sûr, fiction and poetry, usually buckets o' nineteenth-century frog stuff.

6. What genre do you dislike?

Current events, for starters. All those unopened covers concealing delicious, antique creative goodness and I'm supposed to waste my time scarfing down shit I read about six months ago in The Google?

7. Is there a book that has changed your life?

They all do, no? Whether the degree of change lasts for five minutes or five years is an entirely different matter. Everything fluctuates. Except the views of a bloodthirsty wingnut or a card-carrying corporate hack of the DLC.

8. Have you ever met an author? What author would you like to meet?

Not any live ones, but Neil Gaiman is coming to Cleveland in October and thankfully not on a Saturday.

Bibliophile powers, activate! Form of, a tag! La Belette Rouge, thatgirl, spartacus (file it away for your triumphant return to online slackerdom)


La Belette Rouge said...

Not sure you got the memo but I have gone into tagging retirement but I will do this one. But, do I have to mention the title of your blog? Bean songs in the morning are just a little much. But books are good anytime. Fun tag, thanks Randal.:-)

sunshine said...

You don't think I read,do you? That's why you didn't tag me!!!
You are walking a thin line buddy. Should I find someone else to stalk?!?
sniff, sniff....
I'll be back later. Humph!
(in my head when I asked the question "should I find someone else to blog" you begged me to stay.)
Like I said before...
I'll be back to comment further.

Randal Graves said...

LBR, oh, I get it, your blog is far too classy, huh. But since you're willing to suffer the tag, I'll overlook your blasphemy just this once. ;-)

sunshine, I tagged you with the last meme! Usually people complain when I tag.

There really is boiled rabbit in my future, isn't there. Oh well, as long as there's some action beforehand. ;-)

Übermilf said...

What I've learned from this post: you eat Funyuns.

Dean Wormer said...

5. What genre do you read the most?

I was sure you were going to answer Vogon poetry or Who's The Boss slash fiction.

sunshine said...

Don't get me wrong. I would have complained .. loudly no doubt.
... since you left such a nice comment over at my place I'll forgive thee. :)
Boiled rabbit? Non (I wrote that en Francais just for you baby). But remember that hanging meat? Could be your meat. I'm kidding, I'm kidding!!! I'm a sweetheart! Really!
I'm flattered that you would consider some action with me! Even though you feel physically threatened and all. You're sooooo cute!

Tom Harper said...

Speaking of Stephen King and remakes: There was a mini-series version of The Shining that was very true to the book. It starred Brian Weber in the Jack Nicholson role. (I think I got the name right. He was in Wings; played the happy-go-lucky party-animal younger brother.) He did a wicked portrayal of somebody slo-o-o-owly going stark raving mad. Since it was a mini-series, they had time to include almost everything from the book without abridging anything.

Liberality said...

Why am I not surprised by any of this?

I liked that Dracula adaptation too, probably because my hottie, Keanu Reeves, was in it.

sunshine said...

IMO Stephen King needs to be stopped. Tv movies..okay I can handle that. On the BIG SCREEN no.
My sister in law and I went to see that piece of crap "The Mist". One of the worst movies EVER.
But seriously.. I can't handle his tv movies either.
I liked Dracula too. Keanu Reeves is yummy!!!
My favorite book was called Silken Savage.. a native American steals a white woman and claims her as his own. After he has his way with her, she falls in love with him and they have a couple of kids. Suddenly, she is retaken by her people!!! Will they get back together? Will she ever again feel the throb of his.....
You get the idea. I read that book in grade 8 and it has stuck with me ever since.
I know you didn't ask little ol me but there ya have it anyways.
Ciao for Niao!

Beach Bum said...

4. Where do you buy your books?

The internets, Half Price Books, Old Erie Street before they semi-closed. Of course, the truly expensive ones I simply borrow and horde, keeping them from the rest of you.

I've had to abandon buying any books from the local chain stores. They seem to be completely infested with the current bestsellers for the semi-literate proles around me. I find Ann Coulter staring back at me from the book shelves far to freaking often and the genre of "adult thriller" has taken on the blandness of white bread.

As far as science fiction is concerned novels tied in from video games is a sure sign of the death of any real creativity left in America.

I've had to start buying my books from Amazon.

Tengrain said...

Graves, you swine!

This is a meme I would have done.

Personally, I think the greatest screen adaptation is The Perils of Gwendolyn in the Land of the Yik-Yaks.



S.W. anderson said...

Did you have to trash the "The Secret Path to Quasi-Mystical Happiness . . ." series? I mean, legions of suburbanites look to these things for culcha, uplift and temporary relief from broadcast dreck punctuated with Billy Mays shoutfests.

Regarding "Dracula," there's a campy eeriness and evil charm to the 1930's film starring the one and only Bela Lugosi that can't be beat, IMO.

Randal Graves said...

übermilf, only on special occasions.

dean, pshaw. Facts of Life is where it's at.

sunshine, I'm simultaneously flattered and scared. Good thing the border is secure, thank you, DHS!

tom, oh yeah, I remember that. I, too, thought it was pretty decent. People were reluctant to think of anyone but Jack in that role.

liberality, I've now mastered the art of predictability.

I wish they'd come out with a special edition of that flick. There has to be some stuff still lingering in the studio vaults.

sunshine, the problem with King is that the fucker churns out at least one 500-page book every goddamn year. I pore over every goddamn sentence I write (not including this shitty blog, obviously). Silken Savage sounds pornographic. I'm telling on you to the Canadian equivalent of the FCC!

BB, between your forays into the bizarre world of Carolina Blockbusters and Ann Coulter reading rooms, I'm in awe at your resolve against the unending waves of lunacy.

tengrain, what a classic film. Isn't that how Tawny Kitaen landed her later role as David Coverdale's hood ornament?

SWA, hey man, I'm just biding my time until Billy Mays releases his own self-help manual.

The Lugosi Dracula is excellent. I love all those old Universal horrors.

Distributorcap said...

you can read?

Randal Graves said...

No, but I like when someone reads me Dr. Seuss.

Anonymous said...

I'm retired Randal... but I'll be here for this old-timer's meme. It's pretty much the old-timers that still read anyway.

Dr. Zaius said...

I thought I already left a comment here? Something snaky about Funyuns...