Saturday, March 24, 2012

Recent Reads: Alexander Fool Longitude Tongue

Moore always makes me laugh out loud!  This book explains the papacy (The Discount Pope & the Retail Pope - one offers cheesy bacon bits on the hosts), and it includes the lines "she honked my codpiece" and "strung together like anal beads from Hell's own bunghole."  It's an alternative and hilarious version of King Lear.  Loved it!

I've read many books on language, including another by Abley.  This one is a contemporary look at language via modern day lenses, such as Hip Hop & Rap and language, the Internet, and globalization/migration.
Lots of interesting factoids and examples.
You'd think that this would be dull as dishwater, but it's actually a fascinating story.  Put yourself in the headspace of a sailor in - let's say 1653 - and consider the challenges to seafaring back then.  No GPS devices, no ship-to-shore communications, and of course, challenges like food and health while at sea.
Figuring out longitude had a huge impact on sailing and exploration.  A really cool read!

Not the most exciting book ever but still a worthwhile read (if a book doesn't grab me enough I won't finish it).  The man himself was interesting (although anal), but the real catch here is the depiction of mental health way back when and how society dealt with law and order and people who didn't fit into expected social molds.  Interesting stuff here.

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