entries by topic: reading

2019/5/6 reading: the raven tower
2019/2/12 reading: astounding
2018/1/29 reading: a wizard of earthsea
2018/1/18 reading: master and commander
2018/1/16 reading: smilla's sense of snow
2018/1/1 reading in 2017
2017/11/28 it helps (maybe it's a need) / to find a place to look outward / from, to center / a self and order all the / pieces of things
2017/11/24 reading: stories of your life and others
2017/2/28 reading
2017/1/14 enough exposure to the look and feel of / old science fiction will give you / this kind of double vision when it comes / to the style of the present
2016/4/24 Purchased at the Friends of the Loveland Public Library Book Sale, for $5 in total:
2016/4/12 Somewhere just before dark, I sit on my new front steps with a low-grade import beer that I don’t actually want much and listen to the frogs across the street. I want to hear the frogs quite a bit more than I want the beer. They’ve been noisy every night since I moved in, a jarring reminder of the organic world that I have been ignoring while looking at screens for so long. Later, writing this at the kitchen counter with the front door cracked and the heat leaking out into the mid-April night time chill, I can still hear them.
2015/10/20 Reading: Ancillary Justice and Ancillary Sword, by Ann Leckie. Almost done with the second, and one more book to go in the series, I think.
2015/10/7 I don’t really care about Jonathan Franzen, in a way that probably functions as a microcosm of all the ways I usually fail to care about literary fiction as a genre. Life is short, the available writing is well-nigh infinite, and there is so much else to be interested in one way or another. It’s even possible that, once or twice, I have defended some notion Franzen has expressed in prose as perhaps not entirely worthy of the overheated loathing his stylings tend to generate in some quarters of the internet, but that’s the sum total of my involvement to date, and in general I’m happy to keep it that way.
2014/12/17 I'm writing a bit about the command line again (surprise), and I hadn't read In the Beginning was the Command Line in ages. Somehow searching for that one got me reading this Neal Stephenson interview on Slashdot.
2014/8/4 reading - meta-reading
2014/5/21 Ta-Nehisi Coates, The Case for Reparations:
2014/3/11 Reading: Still Life with Oysters and Lemon, Mark Doty:
2014/2/8 Reading: Lady of Mazes, Karl Schroeder (arrived at via this Jo Walton piece) and his earlier Ventus after finishing that.
2014/2/4 Fragments from October's notebook.
2014/1/12 the one casey is waiting for - reading
2013/11/10 Reading: Berlin Diary: The Journal of a Foreign Correspondent 1934-1941, William Shirer. Not an unproblematic book, but an interesting view into the political machinery of a war, the breakdown of a civilization, and the early years of broadcast journalism.
2013/9/7 I’ve been reading Grudin’s Time and the Art of Living for a couple of days now. I came to it by way of a quote in the documentation for the GNU date utility, in the section on date formats. I’ve loved that bit for years, but for some reason it struck me that I ought to read the original.
2013/9/5 Robert Grudin, preface to Time and the Art of Living:
2013/4/25 Reading: River of Stars, Guy Gavriel Kay.
2013/4/2 Reading: Caliban's War, James S.A. Corey. Second volume of The Expanse. Essentially popcorn fiction, not without its flaws, but exactly the kind of actiony system-scale space opera I have been seeking for a while. Space marines, space battles, asteroid habitats, gunfights, powered battle armor, implausible last-minute escapes, interplanetary politics, etc. Morally kind of iffy at points, but thankfully not sophisticated enough to be especially nihilistic in tone. Clearly grounded in a number of the legitimate concerns of the genre (long-term survival of the species, rocket ships). I was afraid nobody was writing this kind of thing any more. Recommended.
2012/11/25 A book so good that I missed at least four bus stops while reading it: The Boys of My Youth, by Jo Ann Beard.
2012/11/14 A book so good that I actually read the entire thing on the web: Zazen, by Vanessa Veselka:
2012/10/21 So I picked up some things at one of the used bookstores over on Main last night - John Barnes' Kaleidoscope Century, Jo Walton’s The King’s Name, and Douglas A. Martin’s Your Body Figured. I really appreciated Barnes' A Million Open Doors a decade or so ago, so I read Kaleidoscope Century before I went to bed. This turned out to be not a great idea for either of falling asleep or waking up in a useful frame of mind.
2012/10/18 It’s late again. I am eating dry Cheerios by the handful and sitting on my couch messing around on the Internet.
2012/9/30 Sometimes you find a story, of one kind or another, all piled up in one place. I just came across one of those, digging through a moving box for scratch paper: A folder, stashed in a corner, 50 pages of incidental paperwork, notes, blurry photos printed in black and white off some Hewlett-Packard or Xerox, fragments of other peoples' manuscripts.
2012/9/29 Rebecca Solnit:
2012/3/27 From a recent interview with David Graeber:
2011/10/2 reading
2011/7/27 From Trout Fishing in America, by Richard Brautigan:
2011/7/10 It's been the kind of day where at some point one had better plans, but in the end what one does is lay about one's basement apartment acting out some stereotype of reclusive dorkitude.
2011/5/15 A partial inventory of things found in one of those blue plastic tubs from my parents' basement, where I threw a bunch of stuff the last time I had to move in a hurry:
2010/11/22 8190 words since October 26.
2010/11/15 All right, deep breath. Approximately midway through the month of November, I am sitting on about 7 thousand words. This is some literal tens of thousands away from where I should probably be if I were going to hit that 50k.
2010/5/10 There's a certain kind of book that people will tell you, over and over again, that you ought to read. You specifically, because it really reminds them of you. Accordingly, you give it a shot, and promptly discover that you really don't like the book all that much, and then you begin to wonder what exactly it means that everyone thinks you should. For years after this pattern starts, you'll feel a vague, pre-emptory irritation every time some new acquaintance starts a sentence like "say, have you ever read..."
2009/5/18 I bought some books the other weekend. Went into The Book Cellar in Louisville and was about to check out with just The Myth of Sisyphus and Other Essays when I noticed a box of SF paperbacks from the 1960s and 70s. The lady at the counter turned out to have two more in the back.
2009/3/24 Scott Aaronson, the complement of Atlas Shrugged:
2009/2/11 So I finished Anathem the other night. It's the first of Stephenson's novels I've read in its entirety since somewhere around the first volume of The Baroque Cycle.
2009/2/6 Henry Farrell, Partisanship, Ideology and Loyalty:
2009/1/3 The morning of New Year's, I went over to Casey's place on the Hill so he could tune my new (used) bicycle a little.
2008/11/18 So I was just thinking about this in the shower, and it came to me that the real connection between J.R.R. Tolkien and Led Zeppelin is not half a dozen lyrical references and thematic appropriations.1 It is that, in the end, each created a massively popular set of cultural artifacts, exerting enormous influence on entire generations of cultural producers — and that, to date, the bulk of their obvious impact on subsequent art has been pernicious.
2008/10/5 i've just finished reading / a selection of charles darwin's letters
2008/9/8 On the other hand, I checked out a copy of Walking on Water: Reading, Writing, and Revolution, and I like it quite a bit better. Particularly stuff like this:
2008/9/5 Derrick Jensen's name has been in the air a bit lately, for one reason or another. Probably this has something to do with the class of education hippie I hang out with. Anyway, I went to the public library the other day and the only thing they had that wasn't checked out (or stolen) was Welcome to the Machine: Science, Surveillance, and the Culture of Control, by Jensen and George Draffan. It was published in 2004, right in the thick of this decade's explosion of the corporate surveillance state, but I think a bit before some of the uglier revelations of its ongoing excesses were getting much public attention.
2006/10/9 Ripping, just a little, on Steven Pinker. Much of which is kind of reflexive, but there's quite a bit of meat in this:
2006/2/26 My initial impression is that Lessig makes the respectable argument for a reformed approach to "intellectual property", and makes it quite well. I can't fault him for this. Probably it's a necessary task, and I expect I'll enjoy the rest of the book. In broad terms, his enemies are my enemies.
2006/1/25 anyway, about the art of other persons
2006/1/16 the rev. martin luther king died for your three day weekend
2005/12/11 I have been re-reading Rexroth's Classics Revisited essays. What strikes me this time around is not that he was right about the works he describes. I've only read a handful of them, and those mostly in translation. About Job and the Dao De Jing I suspect he's entirely correct, but I still can't say if what he finds in the Great Books is always — or even usually — present. I don't think it actually matters a lot, because the vision of life & value he presents over and over again is so compelling.
2004/9/13 The consilience of inductions takes place when one class of facts coincides with an induction obtained from another different class.
2004/4/15 sed tamen ego requiro - jake - elvis picked up a guitar and made all the women wet - an early morning observation
2004/2/22 particulate matter & other little bits - who wants some?
2004/1/2 Eric called and left a message, said the server was acting strange. When I logged in, a few hundred instances of the script that glues this site together were churning through infinite loops, whirring along in perplexed expectation of an entry I had failed to create for 2004.
2003/9/9 essay - morning
2003/8/12 ggk
2003/7/30 Today I read a couple of George Orwell's essays.
2003/7/22 I'm reading "The Prevention of Literature", by George Orwell. It seems well worth the time.
2003/6/25 matrimony - freedom
2003/6/19 Last night I found a couple volumes of Charles Bukowski in the library. I was in the basement searching for the one thin book of Eric Frank Russell stories in the whole collection, and I remembered that poetry is down there too, in probably the least accessible part of the whole building. So I went and found some.
2003/6/4 So far this summer, I have read two books.
2002/12/19 people talked me into reading the river why, by david james duncan / the river why led me to read a river runs through it, / by norman maclean / which was not very long / nor as good, really, as why / though still pretty good
2002/4/23 I love Roger Zelazny.
2002/4/21 Back to Rexroth. The Bureau of Public Secrets's (that apostrophe does seem really off) Rexroth Archive has actual depth.
2002/2/1 critic
2002/1/23 Poor Fool Blues
2001/11/13 Jeremy's mom just dropped off a box of Krispy Kreme glazed doughnuts. Say it with me: Krispy Kreme. Like Pavlov ringing his little bell. ::drool::
2001/10/10 I had to go to the library last night for an assignment (writing a response to an article on the effects of poverty and high infant mortality on mother love in a Brazilian shantytown), and felt like reading something to stave off a growing sense that the world is shit and people universally suck.
2001/6/20 I finished Louis L'amour's Education of a Wandering Man Monday evening. I've been trying to write a review, but it's not quite finished yet... In short, though, I enjoyed it quite a bit, think I even learned from it.
2001/5/23 I finished reading One Hundred Years of Solitude (translated, though I think it might be worth trying to read in the original Spanish) early this morning. Life doesn't look quite the same afterwards. Sure, sooner or later things will be pretty much back to normal, but some books, you don't come out of quite the same as you went in.
2001/3/4 Sunday, March 4, 19:39 CST / Ok, so where was I?
2001/1/9 Tuesday, January 9, 20:09 CST / Ok, so I got out of the habit of updating.
2000/11/5 Sunday, November 5, 18:31 CST / Ooh, new Simpsons.
2000/10/29 Sunday, October 29, 22:15 CST / Ok, so it's a mostly functional Opera beta. Nice, but there are a couple of bugs and ommissions that need obvious work. Then there's its tendency to occasionally freeze up not just its own window, but pretty much the entire X session for a while, especially when dealing with large images (and maybe large pages in general?). I'm not sure if it's just hammering the processor so much that everything slows to a crawl or what... Though come to think of it, Opera for Windows does sometimes do something similar when switching between a number of large files (unlike most browsers, Opera opens pages as sub-windows instead of using the one-page-one-window approach).
2000/10/23 Monday, October 23, 22:29 CDT / I'm back.
2000/10/7 Saturday, October 7, 14:11 CDT / Well, I said it might be a while.
2000/9/13 Wednesday, September 13, 21:11 CDT / Just finished reading The Subtle Knife, by Philip Pullman. Um, wow. This trilogy (His Dark Materials) is going places I never expected... Which in this case is good. *This* is the sort of thing fantasy should be doing.
2000/8/12 Saturday, August 12, 16:11 CDT / Just got off the phone with Brent and Eric... Effective conversation - voice is just more efficient in a lot of ways, but at the same time I realize why I like IRC so much for this sort of thing: You don't have to worry about *hearing* anyone with text. Or interrupting them.
2000/8/10 Thursday, August 10, 16:40 CDT / Got home about an hour ago, I think. It's been a mostly uneventful week. Spent the last couple of days alternating between talking to relatives, reading, and eating. Yesterday I walked around a creek with my little sister. We almost caught a monster frog that was blind in one eye.
2000/6/28 Wednesday, June 28, 16:18 CDT / Well, I posted what I wrote Sunday (see below) before spending hours talking to Brent/Gurney and Eric/Saalon, and really getting all nice and sleep deprived. We talked seriously about getting together on the 7th, but it looks like that's not going to happen. One of these days, though...
2000/6/25 Sunday, June 25 (posted later) / Must. Have. Sleep.
2000/5/16 Tuesday, May 16, 23:05 CDT / Well, here goes.
2000/3/28 Tuesday, March 28, 22:55 CST / I've been doing a terrible job updating this lately. To no one's surprise.
2000/3/8 Wednesday, March 8, 22:50 CST / Sleep? Who needs sleep?
2000/1/26 Wednesday, January 26, 23:45 CST / I just finished reading Neil Gaiman's Stardust. A genuine fairy tale, the kind of book you read straight through in a sitting and emerge from with a good kind of post-dream feeling.
2000/1/25 Tuesday, January 25, 21:30 CST / Where to start?
1999/11/21 Sunday, November 21, 20:10 (or so) CST / I saw Dogma Friday night. Overall, I enjoyed it quite a bit, though the ending was a little weak. Definitely worth seeing (if you don't think you'll find it too offensive) - I mean, how often do you really find a movie which deals positively with issues of faith and religion, shows faith in a positive light, poses thoughtful criticism of the Catholic church, and has a lot of dick and fart jokes?
1999/11/15 Monday, November 15, 23:40 CST / It's still warm out there. And dry. Really dry. I get the feeling that when winter finally hits, it's going to hit *hard*. Then again, maybe this region is just slowly turning into a desert.
1999/10/17 Sunday, October 17, 22:20 CDT / I saw American Beauty again Friday night, followed by Fight Club...
1999/10/12 Tuesday, October 12, 0:39 CDT / Well, this has been a waste of a day. If I had the energy, I might complain at some length.
1999/9/28 Tuesday, September 28, 22:33 CDT / Everything in ~/bbearnes should be back to normal.
1999/8/30 Monday, August 30, 0:57 CDT / I got home on the morning of the 17th, around 7:00, after an 11 hour bus ride. I think it's safe to say that I won't Go Greyhound again any time in the near future.
1999/6/15 Tuesday, June 15, 16:01 CDT / I got home Sunday evening. Spent the week in Breckenridge, Colorado - my dad had one of those meetings that serve as an excuse for everyone to bring their families and do expensive stuff on the company tab. Meant to update before I left, but Hardlink's servers were down (or unreachable, at any rate).
1999/5/9 Sunday, May 9, 17:58 CDT / I finished A Song for Arbonne, by Guy Gavriel Kay, the other day. It's an excellent book by any standard I can think of, though (for me) it falls a bit short of Tigana and The Lions of Al-Rassan.
1999/3/8 Monday, March 8, 12:29 CST / Woo! Another snow day...
1999/2/24 Wednesday, February 24, 23:41 CST / While looking for a Project Gutenberg etext of Hamlet, I stumbled across one of a book I mentioned a while back, Hackers: Forgotten Heroes of the Computer Revolution, by Steven Levy. And one of Bruce Sterling's The Hacker Crackdown, which I really ought to read some time.
1999/2/15 Monday, February 15, 20:00 CST / I've been reading Hamlet for a highschool English class. Great stuff. Shakespeare rocks.
1999/2/6 Saturday, February 6, 19:44 CST / So much for daily updates. I'll try to do better this coming week.
1999/1/18 Monday, January 18, 14:10 CST / I won a copy of The Lions of Al-Rassan, by Guy Gavriel Kay, at last Sunday's TriviaBlitz. Finished reading it early yesterday morning, at around 4:00. It's set in a world that I understand is based on medieval Spain, on the brink of a holy war and the collapse of a civilization. It's the kind of book that defies easy classification - it's not quite a historical novel, and it's not really Fantasy - but however it gets labelled, it's excellent. (Thanks to Stephen for the recommendation, BTW.)
1999/1/11 Monday, January 11, 23:40 CST / I just finished reading Neuromancer, by William Gibson. It took me a while to get into, and it was a bit rough around the edges, but... Wow. Definitely a classic. (Not to mention being the book that gave us the word "cyberspace", much to the idiotic delight of the buzzword-loving mainstream press.) I'll have to read more Gibson in the future.
1998/12/30 Wednesday, December 30, 11:41 CST / Well, I'm back.
1998/10/18 Sunday, October 18, 12:20 CDT I must (once again) apologize for the lack of updates lately. I'm still without a working computer of my own, and updating from the Mac is something of a pain. Regular updates should resume once I get a hard drive installed. Anyway, on to the ramblings...
1998/9/22 Tuesday, September 22, 20:34 CDT I just finished re-reading The Fellowship of the Ring. It's been years since I first read The Lord of the Rings; I'd forgotten how good it really is.