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Stinky Cheese and Stinky Cheese

It’s a strong cheese that goes right up to the border of stinkyland, but refuses to cross over. It’s nutty, and slightly sour, with a nice solid texture that slices easily but is a bit more dry than a typical cheddar. [...]

Book Review: Abiyoyo by Pete Seeger

My book review is about a book called Abiyoyo by Pete Seeger. It is about a boy and his father. The father had a magic wand and the boy had a ukulele. The other people didn’t like them. The father made too many practical jokes and the boy annoyed people. The people made them live [...]

Read Hooman Majd: The Ayatollah Begs to Differ

I enthusiastically recommend Hooman Majd’s recent nonfiction book, The Ayatollah Begs to Differ. Majd is the grandson of an Iranian Ayatollah and the son of an exiled Iranian diplomat who is fluent in Farsi and English, who grew up in Britain and America and yet is familiar with Iranian President Ahmadinejad and a number of [...]

The Tedious Mortality

There is enough interesting material about the Black Death of medieval Eurasia to fill several books. I would have loved to have read more about the contemporary and subsequent folklore about the plague, for instance. Yet, John Kelly seems to have avoided such rich areas of material. For that reason, I suggest that people interested in the history of the plague avoid The Great Mortality. [...]

Book Review: Guests of the Nation by Mike Palecek

“President George W. Bush did 9/11. No Shit. Really.”

So says Mike Palecek at the very top of his website. This declaration is a fair summation of his new short novel Guests of the Nation, a novel that Palecek sent to Irregular Times with the request that we write a review. While written in [...]

Sarah Palin to Librarian: Ban These Books Or You're Fired!

Gary sends me a link this morning to Time magazine about Palin’s time as mayor:

Stein says that as mayor, Palin continued to inject religious beliefs into her policy at times. “She asked the library how she could go about banning books,” he says, because some voters thought they had inappropriate language in them. “The [...]

Random House Retracts Publication Because Somewhere a Muslim Might Get Miffed

Random House had made Sherry Jones’ romance novel “The Jewel of Medina” ready for publication, and the Book of the Month Club had made it one of their picks. But as the Washington Post’s Michelle Boorstein reports, the Random House corporation then decided that it would rescind the book’s publication. Because the book was rotten? [...]

Read Lewis Black Books for his Personal History… not for the Jokes

I’ve been a fan of Lewis Black’s stand-up comedy for a while. He has an ability to make righteous outrage so hilarious that I find my anguish vented and deflated when he’s done with me. His video comedy (which you probably have seen on The Daily Show) directed me to his books, Nothing’s Sacred and [...]

Obama-Einstein 2008: Just Words

Albert Einstein spoke the same message that Barack Obama speaks today: That we do not need to be restricted to the fears and hatreds of our predecessors. We can overcome it. Germany did not listen to Albert Einstein in 1932. Will America listen to Barack Obama in 2008? [...]