Sunday, March 7, 2010

The Most Rapid-Fire Book Club In The Whole Wide World

I'm a bookworm. Rarely go anywhere without a book of some sort. Maybe plural. I don't do Kindle either; to me it's all about the physical object. Sure, a Kindle's smaller, you can fit a lot of books in it, but it takes away a lot of the fun of obtaining the book in the first place. I love going into a used bookstore somewhere (this one's highly recommended) browsing for a while, and all of a sudden stumbling upon something that just screams "Buy me, I'm interesting, I'll tell you something you don't already know, and besides, I'm, like, $5."

And that's when I BUY a book. One of the most perplexing things to me is when the local library shed some hours. It drove me up the wall. I mean, here you have one of the greatest achievements of humanity; a library. A place where you can engage, to your heart's content, in a crucial building block of self-improvement- reading- that was only available to a select group of people at one point in time, and in some parts of the world still is. A building block that some people will go to any lengths to deny people, and one that a number of those same people will in turn go to any lengths to have. You have a place where you have gathered, in one place, all manner of information, on any number of topics, where you can go and better yourself, for free (tax excluded). And people don't want it. I can't understand it.

Peculiar thing, apparently, is that I'm almost exclusively a nonfiction person. Don't know why, just am.

So, that established. What follows is a glimpse into my own personal bookshelf. It's not a complete list. However, it should give enough of an idea of what I read. I've condensed a bit where deemed prudent; you don't need to hear me list off every single Bathroom Reader, for example.

(Oh, it is at times like this that I wish I knew how to collapse posts.)

Abrahams, Marc- The Ig Nobel Prizes: The Annals of Improbable Research
Acocella, Nick; Dewey, Donald- The All-Time All-Star Baseball Book: The Greatest, Oddest, and Worst Lineups in the History of the National Pastime
Adams, Scott- 8 different Dilbert books
Adams, Scott- "Stick To Drawing Comics, Monkey Brain!"
Amend, Bill- 7 different Foxtrot books
Amster, Linda; Loeb McClain, Dylan- Kill Duck Before Serving: Red Faces at the New York Times
Ariano, Tara; Bunting; Sarah- Television Without Pity: 752 Things We Love to Hate (and Hate to Love) About TV
Barry, Dave- 9 different books
Bathroom Reader's Institute- 26 different Bathroom Readers (I get mentioned in two of them due to submissions I made, 'Unstoppable' and 'Ahh-Inspiring'; my favorite's the one in Unstoppable about this guy)
Belsky, Gary; Fine, Neil- 23 Ways to Get to First Base: The ESPN Uncyclopedia
Benrik- This Book Will Change Your Life!
Benrik- This Book Will Change Your Life Again!
Bernstein, Ross- The Code: Baseball's Unwritten Rules and Its Ignore-At-Your-Own-Risk Code of Conduct
Bernstein, Ross- The Code: The Unwritten Rules of Fighting and Retaliation in the NHL
Bloch, Andrew- Murphy's Law for Doctors
Bloch, Andrew- Murphy's Law for Lawyers
Boese, Alex- Elephants on Acid and Other Bizarre Experiments
Bombeck, Erma- Aunt Erma's Cope Book
Borgenicht, David; Regan, Turk- The Worst-Case Scenario Almanac: Politics
Bourdain, Anthony- The Nasty Bits
Brooks, M. Evan- Military History's Most Wanted
Brown, Paul- The Official Guide to the Unofficial Football World Championships
Burnett, Mark- Survivor: The Ultimate Game
Butler, Daniel; Ray, Alan- The World's Dumbest Criminals
Butler, Daniel; Ray, Alan- These Aren't My Pants!: The Dumbest and Dimmest From the Files of America's Dumbest Criminals
Carlisle, Jeff- Soccer's Most Wanted II
Carolino, Pedro; da Fonseca, Jose, edited by Collins, Paul- English As She Is Spoke: Being a Comprehensive Phrasebook of the English Language, Written by Men to Whom English Was Entirely Unknown
Chandrasekaran, Vali; Hely, Steve- The Ridiculous Race
Cohen, Robert W.- Baseball's Hall of Fame or Hall of Shame?
Colbert, Stephen- I Am America and So Can You
Conner, Floyd- Football's Most Wanted
Cooper, Anderson- Dispatches From the Edge
Craughwell, Thomas- The Cat in the Dryer and 222 Other Urban Legends
Cummins, Joseph- Anything for a Vote: Dirty Tricks, Cheap Shots, and October Surprises in U.S. Presidential Campaigns
Curtis, Drew- It's Not News, It's Fark: How Mass Media Tries to Pass Off Crap As News (one of my Fark posts shows up in here under my screenname of Gosling)
The Daily Show- America: The Book: A Citizen's Guide to Democracy Inaction
Downs, Patrick; Weiss, Debra- So You Think You're Good at Trivia: The Official NTN Trivia Challenge
Ebert, Roger- I Hated, Hated, Hated This Movie
Ebert, Roger- Your Movie Sucks
Eicher, Joanne; Ling, Lisa- Mother, Daughter, Sister, Bride: Rituals of Womanhood (autographed by Ling)
Eisen, Rich- Total Access: A Journey to the Center of the NFL Universe
Eskin, Blake- The Book of Political Lists
Farquhar, Michael- A Treasury of Great American Scandals
Fawcett, Bill- It Looked Good on Paper: Bizarre Inventions, Design Disasters, and Engineering Follies
Fawcett, Bill; Thomson, Brian- You Did What?: Mad Plans and Great Historical Disasters
Felton, Bruce- What Were They Thinking?: Really Bad Ideas Throughout History
Ferguson, Will- Why I Hate Canadians
Feynman, Richard- "Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!"
Finley, M.L.; Pleket, H.W.- The Olympic Games: The First Thousand Years
Goldblatt, David- The Ball Is Round: A Global History of Soccer
Gregory, Leland- 6 different books containing stupidity anecdotes
Gryczan, Matthew- Carnival Secrets: How to Win at Carnival Games
Harris, Bob- Who Hates Whom: Well-Armed Fanatics, Intractable Conflicts, and Various Things Blowing Up: A Woefully Incomplete Guide
Hein, Jon- Jump the Shark
Hinckley, Kathy- Plain Fat Chick Seeks Guy Who Likes Broccoli: 200 Humorous Personal Ads
Jacobs, A.J.- The Know-It-All: One Man's Humble Quest to Become the Smartest Person in the World
Kornheiser, Tony: I'm Back for More Cash
Jacobs, A.J.- The Year of Living Biblically: One Man's Humble Quest to Follow the Bible as Literally as Possible
Jacobs, A.J.- The Guinea Pig Diaries: My Life as an Experiment
Lederer, Richard- Anguished English
Lederer, Richard- More Anguished English
Lileks, James- The Gallery of Regrettable Food: Highlights from Classic American Recipe Books
Loewen, James- Lies Across America: What Our Historic Sites Get Wrong
Mackin, Bob- The Unofficial Guide to Baseball's Most Unusual Records
Mahl, Tom- Espionage's Most Wanted
Marcus, Richard- American Roulette: How I Turned the Odds Upside Down- My Wild Twenty-Five-Year Ride Ripping Off the World's Casinos
Mausser, Wayne- Chicago Cubs Facts and Trivia
Nash, Bruce; Zullo, Allen- The Baseball Hall of Shame 3
Nash, Bruce; Zullo, Allen- The Sports Hall of Shame
Northcutt, Wendy- 5 different Darwin Awards books
The Onion- 6 different Onion books, including Our Dumb Century and Our Dumb World
Petras, Kathryn; Petras, Ross- 4 different books containing stupidity anecdotes
Philbin, Regis- Who Wants to Be Me?
Pierce, Dale- Wild West Characters
Prince, Michael; Strosser, Ed- Stupid Wars: A Citizen's Guide to Botched Putsches, Failed Coups, Inane Invasions & Ridiculous Revolutions
Reichblum, Charles- Strange & Fascinating Facts About the Presidents
Reiger, Kurt; Shenkman, Richard- One-Night Stands with American History: Odd, Amusing, and Little-Known Incidents
Rosenblum, Arthur- Unpopular Science: An Unnatural Book about Natural Phenomena
Russo, Christopher; St. John, Allen- The Mad Dog 100: The Greatest Sports Arguments of All Time
Schnakenberg, Robert- Secret Lives of the Supreme Court
Shannon, Mike- Tales From the Ballpark: More of the Greatest True Baseball Stories Ever Told
Smith Magazine- Not Quite What I Was Planning: Six-Word Memoirs by Writers Famous & Obscure
Snyder. John- Soccer's Most Wanted
Steffen, Alex- Worldchanging: A User's Guide for the 21st Century
Steinberg, Neil- If At All Possible, Involve a Cow: The Book of College Pranks
Tierney, John- The Best-Case Scenario Handbook
Tomlinson, Gerald- Speaker's Treasury of Political Stories, Anecdotes and Humor
Wallechinsky, David- The Complete Book of the Olympics, 2008 Edition
Warner, John- So You Want to Be President?
Wolfe, Rich- For Cubs Fans Only!: There's No Expiration Date on Dreams
Wolfe, Rich- For Packers Fans Only!: Wonderful Stories from Great Fans Celebrating America's Team

This is not a complete list. I didn't count the college textbooks; I didn't get every single book on the shelf. But I think we can agree that it's complete enough.

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