Category Archives: On Living Here Now

Ten Books I Would Recommend

According to my ratings on Goodreads (I gave each of these five stars…), I think these are quality books.

  • Stories and Early Novels: Pulp Stories / The Big Sleep / Farewell, My Lovely / The High Window by Raymond Chandler
  • Tales Too Ticklish to Tell: Bloom County by Berkeley Breathed
  • Inspector Saito’s Small Satori by Janwillem van de Wetering
  • The Right Stuff by Tom Wolfe
  • The Real Frank Zappa Book by Frank Zappa
  • The Metaphysical Club by Louis Menand
  • The Severed Streets by Paul Cornell
  • Naples ’44: A World War II Diary of Occupied Italy by Norman Lewis
  • Winston, Newton, Elton, and Ed by James Stevenson
  • Assassination Vacation by Sarah Vowell


  • World Book Encyclopedia still sees print; World Book Encyclopedia 2020 is 22 volumes and retails for $1,199
  • Night of the Living Dead (1968) is in the public domain
  • Kelly Blue Book Used Car Guide last saw print in 2017
  • P.G. Wodehouse’s The Inimitable Jeeves and Leave it to Psmith entered the public domain on January 1, 2019 along with all works from 1923
  • Tennessee Williams choked to death from inhaling the plastic cap of a bottle of nasal spray
  • Lyndon Johnson’s campaign song was Hello, Lyndon; Carol Channing performed it at the Democratic National Convention
  • Cigarette ads in paperback books stopped around 1990 because tobacco companies decided that smokers were not readers

Random Knowledge Vaguely Related to Art

A cherry-picked list of numbers (current at the moment):

Height of Charles Dickens: 5’8″

Height of Kurt Vonnegut : 6’2″

Age of Enrico Caruso at death: 48

Age of Ruggero Leoncavallo at death: 62

Birthplace of Richard Burton: Pontrhydyfen, Wales

Birthplace of Gerard Butler: Paisley, Scotland

Running time of Free Bird (album version) by Lynyrd Skynyrd: 9:08

Running time of Duck Amuck by Chuck Jones: 6:59

Best movie ever made:

The Bicycle Thief (Sight & Sound Magazine – 1952)

The Godfather (Entertainment Weekly – 1999)

Gone With the Wind (Harris Interactive – 2014)