Stimulation

You can’t work all the time (says the guy who works seven days a week). In my “copious free time”, here’s how I’ve been amusing myself of late.

What I’m Reading: I took Bernard Cornwell’s novel Harlequin to read on my Vegas trip. Ended up blowing through that, then reading the sequel, Vagabond, over the weekend. Now I’ve started the final book in the trilogy, Heretic. It’s good adventure fiction, set during the Hundred Years War. The main character is an English archer, with mysterious family roots that go back to the French Cathars. His family is also bound up somehow with the Holy Grail, whose existence Thomas doubts. The formula of the books is classic Cornwell, familiar if you’ve read the Sharpe’s novels. Still, nothing wrong with that. He’s done his research, which shows, and he does a very good job of evoking the period. The books are quite cynical about religion (for example, when a priest evinces surprise that he is being hacked to death with swords, one of the characters says, “We’ll just pay another priest to absolve us!”), so I’ll be curious to see how the third book deals with the grail.

What I’m Watching: I hadn’t thought about the show in at least six months. I nearly forgot there was a new season coming on. Now that there are new Sopranos episodes airing weekly though, I’m totally digging it. About halfway through the first episode of the new season, I thought to myself, “Man, I missed this show.” The premise that Mafioso that went to prison in the 80s are now getting out of jail is great, and both Robert Loggia and Steve Buscemi have been excellent. I am looking forward to Sunday.

What I’m Listening To: I had the CD player on shuffle this afternoon, so I listened to a weird mishmash of tunes from the Newtown Neurotics, the Queers, the Dropkick Murphys, and NWA. I listened to a lot of NWA during my last year at WotC. I think I found the vivid violence of their lyrics cathartic during all the corporate bullshit. I find the misogyny of some of the lyrics to be despicable though. Is it strange that I can listen to songs about killing cops all day and that doesn’t bother me in the slightest but the women hating stuff bugs me?

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