2020, A Big Deal?

imagesOne would have thought that my initial reading list would reveal a glimmering pool of sublime literature but alas, when I look over it I see the same conglomeration of reading that I exhibited in 2019. Should 2020 really be something special, just because it inaugurates a new decade (does it?) and celebrates the final demise of Dishonest (Donald) John Drumpf and his pending banishment from the Leakin’ Lena?

For those that follow the obscure references of an old man, the DJ I am referring to is the puppet although in the case of Der Drumpf, either the cartoon or the puppet is highly accurate.

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Johnny Unitas: The Greatest Quarterback

imagesThe older you get, the less you try to acknowledge evidence of the ever-more rapid passage o time. Yet, being human and a typical example of the ugly American, I did scan the various end of year lists (and some end of decade lists) on the internet: best books, worst movies, and even those whom we lost. As far as movies and television are concerned there are fewer and fewer celebrities available for me to revere other than as a distant memory.

Living as I am with my daughter’s family I have noticed that more and more of my most mundane references are met with black stares and rolling eyes. Help! And grandpa isn’t even senile. My heroes are being forgotten.

But I still have books!

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What’s On Your Plate?

DQ.jpegI’m considering adding books in Spanish (and maybe even French) to my lists. It’s not so much that I’m reading a lot more Spanish fiction but rather that my slow, fumbling march through fiction in a language other than English is absorbing more and more of my time. If it takes me ten times as long to read Bolaño or Cervantes might suggest that I will be reading far fewer books each month. Then again, is that a problem?

Way way back in the past history of this world (often referred to as The Sixties) I read Tarzan en la Selva. As a Senior in High School my family hosted a student from Peru and I spent much of the day immersed in Spanish. But when I matriculated on to the university I was coerced into thinking that a knowledge of Spanish was insufficient for advanced study in literature so I switched to French. This had three results: first, I learned enough French to pass my language exams for graduate school; second, my mind replaced engrammatic knowledge of Spanish words and phrases with the French equivalents, and finally, I twisted my little gray cells around the two languages such that I was never confident speaking either.

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