deckardcanine: (Default)
2017-09-19 08:13 pm

Book Review: The Rosie Project

My mom likes reading up on Asperger's syndrome, if only because she raised me. When she's recommended such reading to me in the past, my interest has ranged from medium (Daniel Tammet's Born on a Blue Day) to low (John Elder Robison's Be Different), but a fictional story may help. In this case, the first-person narrator, genetics professor Don Tillman, studies up on Asperger's in the first chapter, but only when the Graeme Simsion novel is nearly over does he begin to entertain the idea that he may have it; he'd just assumed he was one of a kind.

Cut for length )

I have not decided what to read next. Maybe Stephen King's The Gunslinger, which is probably better than its new movie version.
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2017-09-17 10:56 pm

As She Is Spoke

“Engrish” humor? Yes, I dig it.
Does that mean I am a bigot?
I think not; I recognize
That I have made pathetic tries
At other languages as well.
It’s simply hard for me to tell
How bad non-English errors get,
Despite translations on the Net.
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2017-09-11 12:12 am

Cake Wrecks: A Poem

What defines a “cake wreck”? Well, first, it is a cake.
Most commonly, the decorator made a big mistake.
The message may have typos or be simply hard to read.
The overall design may not be fully as agreed.
The customer’s instructions may get written in the icing.
The form may be too warped for many folks to find enticing.
At times, there’s clearly talent, but it’s kinda gone to waste,
As someone placed an order that’s in questionable taste.
I figure the majority of “wrecks” are fine to eat,
As long as you ignore such shapes as fungus-laden feet,
But some use weird ingredients or toppers that they shouldn’t,
And some look awfully aged. Who’d bite into them? I wouldn’t.
In short, a lot of cakes appear created by a nut.
The good news is, their photos might just make you bust a gut.
deckardcanine: (Default)
2017-09-03 11:33 pm

Eyeworm

An earworm’s a song that gets stuck in your head.
At times I develop an eyeworm instead.
I don’t mean the kind that biologists know,
Just visual patterns that don’t swiftly go.
Perhaps you don’t know what I’m talking about.
Spend hours on Tetris and then you’ll find out.
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2017-08-27 09:31 pm

From an American

We get big meals at restaurants, where tips are sorely needed
And waiters get solicitous as soon as we are seated.
The listed prices lie; we have to calculate the tax.
Regardless of the weather, we have ACs at the max.
Our kids must pledge allegiance, tho they hardly understand.
We vote before we drink, and we have spray cheese in a can.
We censor nudes more avidly than violence on screens.
Our football gets priority for even high school teens.
We rarely think in metric, and our bills look too alike.
We’re big on motor vehicles and hardly care to bike.
I read all these complaints from those who visit the U.S.,
And I agree; these get a bit annoying in excess.
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2017-08-26 10:49 pm

Book Review: The Way of Shadows

As I said before, the first novel in the Night Angel Trilogy doesn't show many signs of fantasy up front, apart from a mix of common and unfamiliar names and some made-up geography. I think it was around page 80 that I became certain that magic even exists in its pseudo-medieval world, and no blatantly fictitious species rate a mention. Magic does play an important part, but subtly enough that author Brent Weeks clearly wants to impress us in ways other than sheer imagination.

Cut for length )

At the advice of both parents, I have borrowed The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion. My reactions to Aspergian characters have been hit and miss; we'll see how this goes.
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2017-08-20 09:53 pm

Hold On; I'm Coming to the Point

I met a talking fish today; he came upon a wave
To board my boat and said to me, “Hello, I’m Salmon Dave.”
I gazed at him and said, “Good sir, you’re welcome on my yacht,
But I’ve seen many salmon sorts, and I could swear you’re not.”
He said, “Indeed, it’s just a silly nickname I’ve acquired,
But that’s a long fish story; if I tell it, I’ll be tired.”
“Okay,” said I, “but do please tell me what you chance to be.”
He answered, “I’m a sole, man,” and I threw him in the sea.
deckardcanine: (Default)
2017-08-13 10:58 pm

(no subject)

The Style Invitational asks for limericks featuring any English word, name, or term that begins with "gh" or "gi." I perused my hardcopy dictionary and came up with this:

You may say you don’t mean any harm,
But I still must insist you disarm.
I don’t care that we missed
Putting such on the list
Of banned items; don’t bring a gisarme.
deckardcanine: (Default)
2017-08-06 09:35 pm

What's the Story?

When TV shows for kids declare that reading’s lots of fun,
I rather doubt the lesson takes. Am I the only one?
They don’t show people reading, or at least they don’t for long.
Instead, they use a “magic” sequence, often with a song.
The scene described on paper happens right before our eyes.
It can be entertaining, but it’s quite the compromise.
I did acquire a taste for books, just not the ones on screen:
I thought I’d give priority to tales I hadn’t seen.
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2017-07-30 11:02 pm

When It Rains, It Pours

Back in the day, I used to call
A number to learn of the weather.
I remember a time the recorded man
Didn’t have it all together.
He got through describing the next two days;
I’d noticed no mistake,
But he must have made one somewhere, as
He suddenly took a break
And exclaimed a strong pair of profanities.
The report just ended there
And looped to the gentle intro,
Extra jarring after a swear.
I don’t think this is the place to repeat
Exactly what was said,
But the sound bite, while probably not preserved,
May never leave my head.
deckardcanine: (Default)
2017-07-23 10:38 pm

Screening Misinformation

Everyone knows that movies and shows
Play fast and loose with what’s true,
But certain bluffs are repeated enough
That they can be hard to see through.

If you’re not one to have fired a gun,
You’re in for a big surprise,
As once you’ve found how it looks and sounds,
You’ll reflect on a pack of lies.

Of greater concern is the treatment of burns,
Among other bodily harm.
Know that CPR goes only so far
And some die from a broken arm.

Alas, there’s more: You’ll find dangers galore
From animals out in the wild.
A swan or deer might just break you in fear,
And monkeys are seldom mild.

It’s clear that we must take care not to trust
Our Hollywood inspirations.
I advise you to get a look on the Net
For further information.
deckardcanine: (Default)
2017-07-16 10:18 pm

Another Super Alphabet

A’s for Apocalypse, brainwashing troops.
B’s for Bizarro, reversal of Supes.
C is for Catwoman, expert at stealing.
D is for Deathstroke, who’s good at self-healing.
E’s for Electro, whose origin’s tragic.
F: Felix Faust, who knows plenty of magic.
G is for Grodd, who’s a psychic gorilla.
H is for Heat Wave, a flame-throwing killah.
I: Iron Monger, all covered in steel.
J is for Joker, who laughs like a heel.
K is for Kraven, who loves a good hunt.
L: Living Monolith, hard to confront.
M’s for Mystique, who can take any form.
N is for Nimrod, who’s far from the norm.
O is for Owl, who can glide through the air.
P: Poison Ivy, with plants in her hair.
Q’s for Queen Bee, who shoots poisonous darts.
R is for Rhino, who breaks walls apart.
S is for Scarecrow, who causes a fright.
T is for Two-Face, who’s only half right.
U is for Ultron, a man-hating droid.
V is for Venom, whom all should avoid.
W: Wendigo, great savage brute.
X is for Xorn, whom you’d better not shoot.
Y’s for Ymir, who’s a giant of frost.
Z is for Zod, who gets deadly when crossed.
Comic book heroes, more often than not,
Call for strong villains to make a good plot.
deckardcanine: (Default)
2017-07-12 10:23 pm

Book Review: Wyrd Sisters

I last said I was reading Hyperion, but after about 180 pages, I found it too dreary to continue without a break. Maybe I'll never finish it. Regardless, I picked up what promised to be the funniest book on my shelf that I hadn't read yet.

Given how much I enjoyed two Discworld novels (I'd read three, but the first was merely OK), you'd think I wouldn't wait nearly four years to pick up another. Granted, Terry Pratchett's collaboration on Good Omens may have tided me over.

Cut for length )

Feeling up for another tome, I'm trying The Way of Shadows by Brent Weeks. So far, it hasn't shown any fantasy premises, only fictitious geography.
deckardcanine: (Default)
2017-07-09 03:03 pm

Take It Away, Letterman

A is for Aquaman, lord of the sea.
B: Black Canary, as loud as can be.
C: Captain Marvel, who calls out, “Shazam!”
D is for Deadpool, who’s really a ham.
E’s for Elektra, who wields some mean knives.
F’s for the Flash, always first to arrive.
G’s for Green Arrow, who hits every mark.
H is for Hellboy, whose future is dark.
I is for Iceman, who “chills” when he fights.
J: Jubilee, who makes powerful lights.
K is for Krypto, a powerful dog.
L’s for Lagoon Boy, who’s great in a bog.
M’s for Miss Martian, who passes through walls.
N is for Nightcrawler, fearing no falls.
O’s for Orion, the son of a bane.
P is for Psylocke, who harms with her brain.
Q is for Quicksilver, faster than sound.
R is for Rogue, whose mere touch leaves one downed.
S is for Superman, tougher than trains.
T is for Thor, who brings lightning and rains.
U is for Ultragirl, one heavy hitter.
V is for Vixen, who channels all critters.
W: Wolverine, rapidly healing.
X for Xavier, who knows what you’re feeling.
Y: Yellow Peri, with magic galore.
Z’s for Zatanna, who might just have more.
Heroes in comics account for each letter.
Obviously, they’re as common as ever.
deckardcanine: (Default)
2017-07-02 10:45 pm

Independent Thinking

I’ve sometimes asked myself, “If I
Were born in the 18th century,
Would I have supported the Revolution,
Not knowing what the future would be?”
The Declaration of Independence
Lists lots of complaints about George III,
But recent presidents get just as many;
I won’t take every accuser’s word.
And even if true, how much would I care
When the focus was mainly on three pence tax?
I know it went further in those days, but still,
Would it get me behind secessionist acts?
The Founding Fathers took a big risk
With a government like we’d never seen.
I tend to be slow to adopt what’s new,
So it’s highly likely I wouldn’t be keen.
That said, I have to remind myself
That it’s silly to guess what my thoughts would be:
Without this era’s knowledge and nurture,
The past so-called “I” would not be me.
deckardcanine: (Default)
2017-06-25 10:10 pm

IM in favor of change

in college I started to use instant messaging
soon I got used to the habit of friends
forgoing formalities such as the capital
sentence beginnings and dots at the ends
of course they’d abbreviate popular phrasing
like talk to you later to ttyl
for my part I started to go a bit further
by shortening words I did not like to spell
so through became thru and then though became tho
as I told an IMer more formal than others
he called me an anarchist I begged to differ
I simply asserted my personal druthers
the rules of our language aren’t set by committee
they shift with the millions who speak it worldwide
instead of an anarchist call me a democrat
hoping linguistics will come to my side
deckardcanine: (Default)
2017-06-18 11:31 pm

Fatherly

For years, I acted hostile,
And you couldn’t fathom why,
Till one good doctor met us.
He determined what to try.
Eventu’ly, my enmity
Reduced itself to naught.
Love grew to take its place; I found
You’re quite the dad I’ve got.
deckardcanine: (Default)
2017-06-11 10:30 pm

Ain't It the Truth?

There’s a word that I’ve known since my one-digit years,
Yet it still bears a red-squiggle taint.
Grammarians simply don’t want to acknowledge
Legitimate usage of “ain’t.”
I know it’s informal; so what, as the same
Can be said of a bunch of contractions?
Its earliest instance in writing appeared
Before “haven’t,” so why the reactions?
Perhaps they resent it for versatile usage,
As standing for multiple verbs.
If anything, that ought to work as a plus
For the people it somehow disturbs.
Might I also point out that no other good word
Contracts “am not” (no, “aren’t” shouldn’t do).
Lexicographers, programmers, teachers, etc.,
Please allow “ain’t” to go through.
deckardcanine: (Default)
2017-06-04 08:12 pm

(no subject)

As I said I would, I entered the Style Invitational's "grandfoal" contest. Today I see that I didn't get any honors, tho the fourth-place result is the same as for one entry I submitted to the previous contest. Guess they didn't have as many good entries this time around. Anyway, I thought I'd share my submissions once more:

Emir Trifle x Help a Thief! = Aden and Abettin'
In a Minute Dear x The Who? = Anon-ymous
Jethro Dull x Hive Got Rhythm = Aquastung
Man Asses x Congrats, Loser = Booty Prize
Fish Shtick x Don's Surly Slight = The Codfather
'Ell, a Beer! x Koch-Conspirator = Ed of Foam
REMbrandt x Love Hertz = Everybody Hertz
Chinese Checkers x Eric Clap = Go-norrhea
Haribo Diddley x Bare It Browning = Gummi Bares
The Half-Dime Show x Shenand"O"ah = Nickel"O"deon
Titan the Screw x Bonus Pints = Screwtape Liters
Ruble Yell x Walk Off Homer = Shekel Leg
Love Hertz x Shenand"O"ah = Shock and O
Baba O'Really x 'Ell, a Beer! = Skeptic Tanked
Muck Rakin' x Bomb Bard = Whistle Blown (Up)

It wasn't my own best either -- certainly not my most prolific -- but I still like some of them.
deckardcanine: (Default)
2017-05-28 10:19 pm

Sort of a Long Time Ago

George Lucas discovered a recipe grand:
Begin with Flash Gordon, but go off the brand,
And watch Kurosawa to know how to frame it,
Along with The Dam Busters. What did he name it?