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Murray Browne
Decatur, Georgia
Writer
Interests: Down & Outbound: A Mass Transit Satire (2016), The Book Shopper: A Life in Review (2009), Understanding Search Engines (1999),
Recent Activity
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For decades, I have kept Sara Stein’s My Weeds: A Gardner’s Botany (1987) resting on my shelf before finally pulling it out and putting it to good use. When it was first published, the quirky title itself stuck in my mind and I recall book-shopping it a few years later... Continue reading
Posted May 5, 2019 at The Book Shopper
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For over a decade I have been visiting Boston to see my older daughter Cynthia which usually includes visits to Boston bookstores, such as Raven Books, the Harvard Book Store and the MIT Press Bookstore. Also in the past, these trips have included visits to various Boston-area landmarks – the... Continue reading
Posted Apr 12, 2019 at The Book Shopper
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On my other blog -- a blog of personal musings about books an book culture called The Book Shopper, I have been periodically tracking what people are reading while riding a Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority bus or train. I call it -- The MARTA Book Club. For nearly a... Continue reading
Posted Mar 23, 2019 at Down & Outbound: The Hub
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It’s been a year since the last MARTA Book Club posting, which is why you may not remember that the MARTA Book Club is metro Atlanta’s premier transportation book club. Membership is easy. All you need to do is read a book while riding a Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority... Continue reading
Posted Mar 22, 2019 at The Book Shopper
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The TransportationCamp South Conference* was held on February 9th on the campus of Georgia Tech University here in Atlanta. I attended so I could mingle among like-minded individuals though I usually don’t say much. This year was an exception because I attended one session hosted by the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid... Continue reading
Posted Mar 5, 2019 at Down & Outbound: The Hub
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Regardless of your opinion on whether you believe President Donald Trump should be removed from office ( a recent poll* reports that 87 percent of Americans believe that Mueller report should be made public), it is time for all citizens to bone up on the rules of impeachment. What is... Continue reading
Posted Feb 26, 2019 at The Book Shopper
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A couple of headlines from the Sunday, February 10, 2019 edition of The Atlanta Journal Constitution. One is from the front page about the widespread destruction of Georgia's crops during Hurricane Michael caused in part by climate change (though the article doesn't say that, but if you scroll down to... Continue reading
Posted Feb 12, 2019 at Down & Outbound: The Hub
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These months between the final game of the World Series and Opening Day can be long and cold if you don’t prepare properly. Last November, I taped the entire MLB All-Stars (sans All Star pitchers) vs Japan’s Samurai All-Stars in a six game exhibition series, which was played in Tokyo,... Continue reading
Posted Feb 3, 2019 at The Book Shopper
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Expect constant delays. Expect constant apologies for constant delays over the loud speaker, but with little or no additional information. Expect to be panhandled. Expect electronic train arrival signs to be either not working or incorrect. Expect puddles of urine in the stairwells decorated with wet cones. Expect crowded subway... Continue reading
Posted Jan 22, 2019 at Down & Outbound: The Hub
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Here's a short article from the Atlanta Journal Constitution, December 20th written by Bill Banks about the City of Decatur where I live and walk the 10-15 minutes to the train station four days a week for the last 9 years. Though miffed by the sudden arrival of EScooters in... Continue reading
Posted Jan 13, 2019 at Down & Outbound: The Hub
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Dear Blog Readers: The Book Shopper blog - now in its 10th year -- is in the process of changing how we maintain contact with our small but fiercely loyal group of readers. There are two reasons for the change: a.) Facebook has become tiresome for several reasons -- even... Continue reading
Posted Jan 5, 2019 at The Book Shopper
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"The best way to absorb the contents of the book is to copy it manually." - Jorge Carrión Instead of focusing on the best books published in 2018, my tradition is to revisit the best books I read in 2018. To do this I pull out a year's worth of... Continue reading
Posted Dec 26, 2018 at The Book Shopper
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I have become obsessed* about scooters but in an unhealthy way -- like riding 15 mph on a motorized scooter without a helmet on a sidewalk strewn with wet leaves. I really dislike them. I've even written a joke about it: "The only thing that keeps me from clipping the... Continue reading
Posted Dec 20, 2018 at Down & Outbound: The Hub
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Despite not being in Jorge Carrión’s list of notable bookshops (see previous posting), Portland, Oregon or should I say Powell’s Books is known unto itself as the City of Books. While making our second visit to Portland, we decided ahead of time that we would at least try to go... Continue reading
Posted Dec 11, 2018 at The Book Shopper
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I recently finished reading Jorge Carrión's Bookshops: A Reader's History (2016), a browser's voyage of bookshops from around the world. The voyage includes a passage through time since some of the bookshops cease to exist except in the author's memory. I am not much of a world traveler, but I... Continue reading
Posted Nov 25, 2018 at The Book Shopper
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For me, World War I isn’t an event remembered once a century, it was something I grew up with since both of my grandfathers fought in The Great War. Captain Glenn R. Browne was in the 35th Division over in France and my mother’s father Sergeant Harry D. (Pete) Burtis,... Continue reading
Posted Nov 16, 2018 at The Book Shopper
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The most noticeable outlier of my Books Read in 2018 list, which is viewable on the blog’s home page, is Brian Christian and Tom Griffith’s Algorithms to Live By: The Computer Science of Human Decisions (2016). This book also caught my attention in the June/July Believer issue (see previous posting... Continue reading
Posted Oct 27, 2018 at The Book Shopper
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The Book Shopper Backlog The last couple months I have seen the backlog of my unpublished postings really pile up. But my alibis are in order: 1.) The Cubs were in the race for the NL pennant again. This was the fourth year that the team has been relevant in... Continue reading
Posted Oct 7, 2018 at The Book Shopper
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The other day I was reading this article from the September 20th edition of The Economist while riding a crowded MARTA train: And that's not all -- then there is the loss of poultry and pigs: You could buy a lot of greenhouse gas-reducing public transportation for that kind of... Continue reading
Posted Oct 7, 2018 at Down & Outbound: The Hub
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This seat-less bike has been chained to a Midtown Atlanta street sign for a couple of weeks. Long enough to wonder if someone is making some kind of "artistic" statement. Continue reading
Posted Sep 9, 2018 at Down & Outbound: The Hub
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The Georgia Book and Paper Fair is a few blocks away from the Decatur Book Festival, which is currently being held on Saturday, September 1st and Sunday, September 2nd. The event is located at Decatur's Ebster Recreation Center, which is air-conditioned and a welcome relief from the heat and humidity... Continue reading
Posted Sep 1, 2018 at The Book Shopper
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Denise and I recently returned from a 10 day swing through the National Parks of Bryce, Glen Canyon, Grand Canyon (North Rim) and Zion. In addition to the amazing scenery, hikes, raft trips, jeep rides and afternoon gin-'n-tonics, we did do some book reading and book shopping. Our audio book... Continue reading
Posted Aug 20, 2018 at The Book Shopper
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When I have to share the already narrow, crumbling sidewalks of Midtown Atlanta with speeding, silent scooters, ridden by well balanced, carefree, young people, I will I admit I have evil thoughts about vandalizing the offending vehicles. And I am not only one, as reported in the August 18, 2018... Continue reading
Posted Aug 18, 2018 at Down & Outbound: The Hub
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One of my many excuses for not posting in a couple of months is that I had been writing a longer piece for Tropics of Meta, which describes itself as Historiography for the Masses. This political and thought provoking website examines popular culture and current events through an historical lens.... Continue reading
Posted Aug 7, 2018 at The Book Shopper
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In the late 1930s and early 1940s, the famous photographer Walker Evans took black and white photographs of riders on the New York City subway. The book Many Are Called includes 89 of these photographs with an introductory essay by James Agee. It was not published until 1966 because Evans... Continue reading
Posted Jul 15, 2018 at Down & Outbound: The Hub