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Archive for the ‘Literature’ Category

I Like Birds

It almost pains me to admit it, but Freedom really is a very good book, despite all the hype.  One of the more interesting aspects of all the media fanfare is that very little attention has been paid to the environmental themes that are central to the book.  Have any of these people actually read the book?  Fortunately, Grist has stepped into the breach and not only has a great Q&A with Franzen, but also tests his birding chops with a bird identification quiz.  It’s great stuff.  And even the dour, publicity shy Franzen is moved to declare that “there’s a lot to like about this Grist.”

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Deux Chevaux

These days the Citroen 2CV appears to be relatively rare, even in France.  Not that surprising given that Citroen stopped building them 20 years ago.  So, I was pleased to see this one in Axat in the Languedoc-Roussillon region of France last month.  According to this Wikipedia entry, the 2CV has “uncompromisingly utilitarian unconventional looks, and deceptively simple Bauhaus inspired bodywork.”  

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Tintin: Breaking Free

Tintin Breaking Free

I wrote last week about my discovery of Tintin in Thailand, the 25th or 26th Tintin adventure (depending on whether you count Tintin and the Lake of Sharks).  It was already confusing enough, so I decided not to clutter the post further with reference to what is really the 25th (or 26th) adventure: Breaking Free.  Originally published in 1988 and republished in 1999, Breaking Free has been characterized as an “Anarchist Parody” of Tintin.  There is, of course, a detailed overview of the book, its plot, etc. on wikipedia.  But unlike Tintin in Thailand, there’s also an easy-to-access online version of Breaking Free that you can read for yourself.

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Tintin in Thailand

As a British male of a certain age, I have more than a passing familiarity with Tintin.  And being comparatively wealthy–that is compared to my 8 year old self–I now possess copies of all 24 Tintin adventures from Tintin in the Land of the Soviets (1929) right on through Tintin and Alph Art (1986) (both pretty much unreadable by the way).   Imagine my surprise when I saw there is in fact a 25th book (well, 26th if you count Tintin and the Lake of Sharks): Tintin in Thailand.

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Credit where credit is due.  MyBallard.com is a great source of neighborhood information and news.  I check it most days.  But really, don’t they have Tintin in Sweden or the Norse-speaking parts of town?

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