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Mister Lizard
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I did not (yet) read the comments over there, but would like to comment over here. You see, a book review is like a movie review. It can be (but need not be) entertainment in its own right. It MUST, however, inform. The information we readers are generally trying to get out of a review is pretty simple: "Should I bother buying, borrowing, or stealing this book for my own edification or entertainment or ______ (fill in the blank)?" This means that the review is only useful if it is intimately written from the "first-person" point of view. While reading the review, we either have to understand the reviewer or already know the reviewer (which is why most newspapers use the same movie reviewer every week). I think that the Miami Herald's Rene Rodriguez'reviews are very helpful. Not because I agree with him. Quite the opposite sometimes. But he is consistent in this point of view, so I can generally figure out if I would like the movie, based on his review; whether HE liked it or not. Knowing Wil Wheaton helps when reading the review of these two books. But what is more important to me is that you did not really judge Ann Patchett's writing skill. You judged the book based on your own standards. As long as the audience understands YOUR preferences (and we regular readers probably do) then the reader can judge for him or herself whether or not the book is worth a read. If I usually find myself disagreeing with you - your review is just as valuable. I'll go out and steal a copy of State of Wonder. If I feel that I have similar tastes, I will go aout and buy a copy of The Sisters Brothers. The point (which I am very bad at getting to) is that I love the way you managed to create a meaningful and useful review WITHOUT TRASHING EITHER WRITER! Way to go Wil! You put everything in a context that will help me decide if I would enjoy reading either of these books. And that's the job of a reviewer.
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Wil, I, too, understand what you feel. A few years after high school (early 1980s!) I used to game with some friends. Then things dropped off. Fast forward ten years or so and I re-grouped with a close friend and some friends of his. We actually had the privilege of play-testing a number of collectible card games, an attempt at an "instant" role paying game, and one board game. Let me tell you: Play testing really tests your creativity and concentration. It was fun - but we also had a job to do. Unfortunately, everyone moved and now I haven't found a new group. Yikes! It's been another ten years or so. I was the least experienced one in the group and if I joined another, I'd probably be "that annoying new guy". At 52, I'd also end up old enough to be most of those kids' father(judging by the kids I see playing at the local game store). What's a old gray-haired Geek-wanna-be to do?
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I'm a corporate trainer for a company that still accepts plenty of check payments by mail. To this day, there are people who include a Chick (or other religious) tract in the envelope, along with the payment. We also get policitcal pamphlets, business cards, advertisements, etc. BTW: Most companies ask that you only include your payment stub and check. Want to know why? It costs a lot more to open the mail manually when other items are included along with the payment! I've collected those tracts found in payments. They're a hoot! You wouldn't believe how many tickets to Heaven I've recieved. I could take the whole community with me!
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Wil, Come to South Florida, pleeeease. And this time - don't get on some friggin' boat and sail off. Anywhere between West Palm Beach and Miami will do. Fort Liquordale would be optimum. I'm sure we can find a stipper bar we might rent for the night. I'd kill to hear "The Day After" and anything from "Memories of the Future Past". It would be way cool if you could do a Q&A session with P&S improvising to the mood. Or better yet - maybe you could do some improv yourself. We throw out ideas... like: Wil attempts to act out a soliloquy from STTNG as P&S play a ragtime tune. In any case - I still owe you a Guiness. Which I can only buy you if you're here.
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Yikes! for me - it comes out to nearly 15 bucks (with shipping)! I didn't hesitate. Can't wait for my Post-Christmas present.
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Wil - that was cute. I especially got a chuckle out of the Clone Kirk hanging out there behind them, ignoring the whole situation. What was wrong with him? Couldn't he hear the intense and exciting Alexander Courage (and friends) soundtrack? If Clone Kirk had come to the rescue, perhaps Real Kirk would not have needed medical subterfuge to survive the battle with Spock. Of course - that might have resulted in the untimely death of Spock, which might have had a sorta negative effect on the entire Star Trek Universe... and what would we have done without The Wrath of Khan if Spock was already dead? No. I think I'm glad that Clone Kirk was wearing space-age ear plugs and looking in the opposite direction. Now I wonder what Clone Kirk was looking at. (Probably a hot Vulcan chick.)
Toggle Commented Dec 16, 2010 on in which i make shopping fun at WWdN: In Exile
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Sign the pretzel and add it to the auction.
Toggle Commented Nov 20, 2010 on the frozen pretzel conundrum at WWdN: In Exile
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Kind of a Rules Lawyer Story: I was GMing Tunnel & Trolls (I know... I know) and my anally challenged brother-in-law (lower case) was one of the players. The delving team entered a dungeon room that turned out to be nothing but a (red herring) bedroom. My ass-in-law decided that the dresser sitting innocently against one wall MUST contain treasure. When he attempted to open it, I made it clear that the group should move on. Each successive attempt failed and angered him more. He decided that there was a rule that: "That God-damed dresser has treasure and you HAVE to give me a way to get at it!" He then took a war hammer and smashed it to pieces. Consequently, his character was fatally impaled by a very large splinter. You see - I can be a rules Lawyer, too!
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Hmm.. I figgered that the WilSongs disk would be Wil singing some classic oldies: Mr. Tambourine Man, Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds, and Spleen! Is it available on itunes, yet? Later, I'll check out the 3D, since I collect that kinda stuff, it'll be cool to hear Wil in 3 dimensions!
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Dec 23, 2009