May 21, 2010

The Weeklies #133

The Weekly Best Inventions Ever. DVD players. For the car. My kids don't watch a lot of TV but we break our own rules when it comes to the car. And during our drive to and from the Outer Banks? We broke that rule a lot.

The Weekly Read. A friend hipped me to the Shit My Dad Says Twitter feed. After laughing my ass off, I grew skeptical. I figured it was just a guy with some good one liners, not a real dude in his late 20s who moved back in with his no-nonsense, foul-mouthed dad. Then the book came out. Look, the book is obviously an attempt to cash in on the success of the site, as well as the hype around the William Shatner-starring TV series currently in development. And books like that usually suck. This one didn't. Sure, it's a quick read and uses the now-infamous Twitter feeds as its centerpiece but it is funny and the portrait that emerges of the shit-saying dad is a pretty decent one.

The Weekly Astonishing Fact. Speaking of William Shatner, do you have any clue how much he's made out of being the spokesman for Priceline? During his 10-year tenure, he's earned a whopping $600 million. Yes. You read that right. See, instead of cash, he took stock. And despite the waning economy, Priceline has remained a highly valued favorite.

The Weekly Music. Rock and Roll. Owen loves Rock and Roll. He requests it whenever we're in the car. His jammies with guitars on them? Rock and Roll Jammies. He's even got the devil horns move down...mostly. Ronnie James Dio, may he rest in peace, would be proud.

The Weekly Thing I Couldn't Care Less About. John Travolta announced they're having another kid. Whoop-de-fucking-doo. Am I supposed to care when famous people get knocked up? Now, if Karl Rove and Rush Limbaugh transcended the boundaries of modern medicine and had a kid together, I'd want to know because, well, kill it with fire! Otherwise, I could give a shit.

The Weekly Schadenfreude. Courtney Love just admitted to having a fling with supermodel Kate Moss. The question is, who else has Courtney loved? Or, perhaps a better question is who hasn't she?

The Weekly Question. What's the last book you read? Would you recommend it?

Posted by Chris at May 21, 2010 7:00 AM

Does last book I read my last book I finished, or just opened up and read a few pages? Because I've been reading Michael Chabon's "The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay" since Feb. My wife and dad loved it, but I can't seem to get into it. Thus the delay in finishing. Normally I'm not a slow reader, but this is getting comical.

Posted by: David at May 21, 2010 8:42 AM

The last book that I read was "The Highly Effective Detective" by Richard Yancey. I thought it was really good! So, yes. I would recommend it.

I'm currently reading "Eight Days to Live" by Iris Johansen. That one's not bad either so far.

Posted by: Kim at May 21, 2010 8:47 AM

The most recent book I've been reading is called "Relationships: A Mess Worth Making" and I would recommend it to some people :) It's focused around building healthy, Christian relationships, so it wouldn't be ideal for people who wouldn't appreciate that it is largely based on the Bible. However, for me, as a Christian, as a psych student, and as someone who screws up relationships all the darn time - I'm finding it very interesting and surprisingly applicable. (Because most books in the genre make me want to punch something. How very un-Christian!)

Posted by: Heather at May 21, 2010 9:12 AM

I just finished Children of God by Mary Doria Russell. Awesome! I highly recommend it. (Although if my Goodreads memory serves me, you've already read it.) Next up: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.

Posted by: Elizabeth at May 21, 2010 9:22 AM

Back when in car DVD was still something we didn't expect to see until we had flying cars (you know, the late 90s) we used to wedge a 12 inch TV/VCR unit between the the front seats to provide back seat entertainment for the kids. If we had ever been in an accident the TV flying forward at 60 mph probably would have killed me.

Last book I read was Dark Sun: The Making of the Hydrogen Bomb. Highly recommended - my review is linked.

Posted by: COD at May 21, 2010 9:34 AM

"The Art of Racing in the Rain" by Garth Stein and I would def recommend it!

Posted by: Kris at May 21, 2010 9:41 AM

My Horizontal Life by Chelsea Handler. I laughed my ass off. It's a total beach book.

Posted by: k8 at May 21, 2010 9:53 AM

Last Book: The Rabbit Factory. It was freaking awesome. Hilarious, good story, and timely with my recent trip to Disney World. I know you know all of this because I read it because of you... but I wanted to say it outloud.

Thank you for the recommendation. I'll be grabbing Karp's next one soon.

Posted by: Brad at May 21, 2010 10:30 AM

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot. Excellent, compelling page-turner in which I actually learned some science stuff.

Posted by: Laura Gato at May 21, 2010 10:31 AM

I finished "Too Much Happiness" on my ride to work this morning. It's a book of rather macabre short stories. I really enjoyed all of them except for the very last one...and it wasn't so much bad as just not to my taste. I would recommend it to anyone who doesn't require happy endings.

Posted by: Kris H. at May 21, 2010 10:59 AM

The very last book I read was Going In Circles--I can't remember the author.

It was good, not great. I think I was looking for something more insightful.

Posted by: debb at May 21, 2010 10:59 AM

I just finish The Almost Moon by Alice Seabold. It was excellent. I'm about to start The Last Days of Dogtown.

And how could you not love Shatner.

Posted by: Annie at May 21, 2010 11:11 AM

The Help by Kathryn Stockett. Excellent book. I highly recommend it. It is about blck maids in the 60s in the south.

Posted by: beth at May 21, 2010 11:16 AM

The Help by Kathryn Stockett. It is an excellent book about black maids in the south in the 60s. I highly recommend it.

Posted by: beth anne at May 21, 2010 11:17 AM

I read "Outliers" and I was underwhelmed. I guess on some level I've always accepted that success is largely a matter of convergence of skill & time & place. If not *only*.

Posted by: harmzie at May 21, 2010 11:31 AM

I'd like to have DVD players in the car, but two of our kids get carsick, so...iPods for everyone!

I wish Dash were more of a rock n' roll dude. I bought him rock n' roll jammies but he's not allowed to wear them because their two-pieced-ness allows him to get into his diaper and create decidedly UN rock n' roll "art" on his walls.

I couldn't care less about celebrities, pregnant or not. Although I was pleased to learn that Bret Michaels isn't going to die from a brain hemorrhage (yet); I'm too young for my heroes to start dropping.

Books... I am currently reading "Children of Dune", the third book in the Dune series. Man, I'm having a hard time loving this series, but my husband gave it to me for Valentine's Day, and since he NEVER picks out gifts for me by himself, I'm determined to read them all and love them for that reason alone. The book I most recently *finished* was "American Wife: a novel" by...correct me if I'm wrong, Curtis Sittenfeld? Anyway, I'm apparently the only person in the world who didn't love it. I didn't like "Prep" either, so maybe that says more about me than. Ms. Sittenfeld. Anyway, I guess "Wife" is supposed to be pretty much about Laura Bush, and if it is at all accurate, she's even less interesting that I originally suspected.

Sorry for the long comment. You asked. ;-)

Posted by: Brooke at May 21, 2010 11:45 AM

Glad you got beachtime...Beachtime is always a good thing. As are DVD players in the car (even though I swore up and down I'd never have one for my is a life saver!)

Last book read: The Girl who Played With Fire. Recommend! As good as the first, if not better. Can't wait for the third book!

Posted by: cyndy at May 21, 2010 12:51 PM

"Until the Final Hour" By Traudl Junge. She was Hitler's last secretary.
Yes, I would recommend this book. You see, people need to understand how a man charmed everyone in Germany back then with his quick smile, amiable ways and plans to change the world for the better! Ah yes, one world! In any case, we know how evil he truly was, and Mrs Junge's book warns us in her simple prose to watch out for a repeat.
Hitler was a master as facades.

Posted by: Maribeth at May 21, 2010 1:46 PM

"Let the Great World Spin" by Colum McCann. Beautiful writing but the actual story failed to ignite me. Don't get me wrong, the story was good, interesting even. But I could put the book down for a couple of days and not give it a second thought. So...?

Is there anything William Shatner HASN'T done? I saw a bunch of his books at the book store the other day and thought to myself, "You have got to be kidding me."

Posted by: Holly at May 21, 2010 2:13 PM

I just finished (last night) "The Late Homecomer" by Kao Kalia Yang. It's about the Hmong-American experience, a memoir of one family living through the war and immigrating to America (Minnesota, specifically). It was very touching. I had to read it for class, but it was a good and easy read.

Posted by: Kelly at May 21, 2010 4:01 PM

Book? 'Chelsea Chelsea Bang Bang' Love her, she's a riot! It's not eductional, inspiring, intriguing, just an easy to read, FUN book (if you're a fan of hers of course)

Posted by: laineyDid at May 21, 2010 4:28 PM

omgoodness, kate moss, what were you THINKING?!

Posted by: kati at May 21, 2010 5:25 PM

The Travoltas: Their story is a sad one after losing their son and the pregnancy is even sadder as it seems they're trying to fill a void in their lives.

Courtney Love/Kate Moss: Excuse me for a minute while I poke out my mind's eye.

Whew, back now. Thanks for waiting.

Last book I read: The Girl Who Played with Fire by Steig Larsson. Loved it but should have read the first book first (reading it now.) and am patiently waiting for the third book to come out. Love Lisbeth Salander and have developed a new love of Sweden and a strong urge to travel there.

Posted by: zanie at May 21, 2010 6:03 PM

Am finishing Game Change. I'd skip it, unless you want the People Magazine version of politics. My mom insisted I read it so we could talk.

Posted by: Sphincter at May 21, 2010 6:33 PM

The last book I read was The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson. You want a novel that reads like an amazing magazine expose? It's that. A mystery/thriller? That too. Something with societal commentary so you can't wait for your friends to read it and you can discuss it to your heart's content? Yup, all there.

I read the first 600 of the 839 pages in a single day. It's a great example of talking about big themes without bogging the story down and getting preachy.

Posted by: Kat at May 22, 2010 10:28 AM

I read this Icelandic mystery novel that was oddly translated. I thought it was ... well... ok. No more. No less.

I don't care who Courtney loves or if John Travolta has another baby.. or with whom for that matter. Smells like has-beens.

Posted by: Nat at May 22, 2010 10:28 PM

Envious of your trip to Outer Banks.... loved your car DVD comment. Returning to the US this summer and will be buying (gulp) a mini van. Having ongoing debate to get DVD player or not. Our 3 year old watches SOME TV but not much. Would probably make drives to PA and FL a bit more pleasant. : ) Check one more box on the pro side.
Re books,,, just finished Outliers: The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell. Pretty interesting read. It did give some ideas as to why one person might make it big and do well in life vs. someone else who appeared to have the same ability but didn't quite make it. Would probably recommend The Tipping Point by Gladwell before this book.
Also just finished reading Nurture Shock:New Thinking About Children by Po Bronson and Ashley Merry man. REALLY liked this book. As a first time parent who gets bombarded with so much info (solicited AND unsolicited) it was nice to sit and read something that at times made me feel perhaps I'm NOT as incompetent as I feel. Some of the things that for whatever reason seem inherent for me to do with and for my child may actually see him obtain rewards in the future because of it.
Re: Rock N Roll.. (insert universal rock and roll hand signal here) My lil dude definitely needs to listen to more of it. Right now he loves Weird Al's White and Nerdy and Music Matters by Faithless. Wishing you and you family a great weekend and a good week! - Mutt

Posted by: Mutt at May 22, 2010 10:43 PM

Well, the Travoltas' son died last year and their dogs were just killed, so I'm happy for the bit of joy that's coming into your lives.

The last book I read was actually Jenny Sanford's autobio (ex-wife of South Carolina goverdouche). It blew. Hard.

Posted by: Stephanie at May 23, 2010 8:16 PM

I said "your lives" when I clearly meant "their lives."

Posted by: Stephanie at May 23, 2010 8:16 PM

"Golden Gate" by Vikram Seth...yesyesyesyesyes, which I read at the same time as "Let the Great World Spin"....yesyesyes

Posted by: Lena at May 26, 2010 7:18 AM