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Name Three Books That Everyone Should Read and Why

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  #1  
Old 01-10-2016, 01:59 PM
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Default Name Three Books That Everyone Should Read and Why


The Complete Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway - I like Hemingway's economical use of syntax

Charlie Wilson's War - This book is an important piece of recent history. It answers what happened to the Iron Curtain

A Comprehensive Grammar of the English Language - This book is definitely comprehensive. About 1,780 pages!

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Old 01-10-2016, 03:55 PM
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The Universe in a Nutshell- by Stephen Hawking. An amazing way to take a glimpse into some of the wonders of the universe.

The 7 Deadly Wonders- by Matthew Reilly. Its like Indiana Jones, but with an international team.

Striking Thoughts: Bruce Lee's Wisdom for Daily Living. An excellent way to open your mind to new ways of seeing yourself and your life.
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Old 01-10-2016, 04:13 PM
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I'm going to recommend three things you can read for free, because they're all long since out of copyright. Two worthy pieces of great literature that aren't often read now, and one that's much less suited to the pointy-headed boffin.

Charles Darwin: On the Origin of Species. A perfect non-fiction book, erudite and literary, completely accessible even to a non-scientist, and it had a profound influence on Western thought. The prose is so good that it's more fun to read than many novels.

Christopher Marlowe: Tamburlaine the Great. Tamburlaine is the play that inspired Shakespeare's early works and kickstarted his career. It established late Elizabethan/early Jacobean drama as an art form, and in style, quality and verve, it's a serious rival to Shakespeare. Intelligent, fun and well-written in its own right, it also gives useful context and background to the study of Shakespeare.

Ambrose Bierce: The Parenticide Club. Bierce's style is worth studying for its own sake. He manages to be vivid, erudite and yet brutally terse. He's also viciously sarcastic, cynical and satirical. The stories themselves are short things, soon read and quickly over, but they'll amuse your wretched misanthropic side. (Yes, your wretched misanthropic side. You self-identify as a writer if you post here, and all writers are wretched misanthropes. This is an inescapable law of nature, henceforth to be known as Non Serviam's Law.)

I'll give an honourable mention to Mary Shelley's The Last Man as well. I'll assume that you've read Frankenstein. The Last Man is her other important piece of science fiction, and it's curiously opposite -- in the same way that Frankenstein is about creating life (it's a fantasy of giving birth, which I think is something that was on the 20-year-old, newly-married author's mind at the time), The Last Man is about being left alone after everyone else is dead (which I think was on the widowed, motherless Shelley's mind at the time).
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English is a strange language. It can be understood through tough thorough thought though.
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Old 01-11-2016, 04:53 PM
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Are those the books you put out on your coffee table when you have company?
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Old 01-11-2016, 11:46 PM
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Do I come across as middle class? I don't own a coffee table, and when I have company over, what I set out is playing cards and alcohol.

The room we gamble in contains about 3,000 books, and the three I've recommended are all on its shelves.

Why are you following me around making snarky comments about everything I post? You've been doing that for months.
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Old 01-12-2016, 03:47 AM
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That's a shame. In the states, people of all classes have coffee tables. Surely you all must have a government program that could help you get one.

If not, I'm assuming you've read all those books, so maybe you should sell some of them and and buy a coffee table with the proceeds.

And while you might need to provide company with some incentive to come over, you'll never improve your situation with all that drinking and gambling.

P.S. I hate to burst your bubble, but I make lots of what some people might think are snarky comments. And I ignore a lot of your posts. Sorry, but you're really not that special. A little paranoid, perhaps?

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Old 01-12-2016, 08:44 AM
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So you're not following me around specifically, you're just a wazzock who thinks he's funny.
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Old 01-12-2016, 09:06 AM
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Sure. Whatever you need to believe, Professor.

Have a lovely day!
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Old 01-12-2016, 02:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Non Serviam View Post
So you're not following me around specifically, you're just a wazzock who thinks he's funny.

I was unfamiliar with the word 'wazzock' so I googled it and this guys pic came up...

He looks a little goofy, but I'm not sure he is the poster child for idiots the world over.

Am I missing something?
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Old 01-12-2016, 02:25 PM
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I wonder if he thinks he's funny.
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Old 01-12-2016, 02:45 PM
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Well, he's playing some sort of eight stringed instrument (maybe a lute?) so yeah, he probably doesn't think he's funny. In fact, he probably takes himself too seriously. Maybe that's why he's a wazzock?
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Old 01-12-2016, 02:54 PM
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Possibly. There seems to be a mini-epidemic of people taking themselves too seriously, especially here on WB.

Or maybe he's a prop comic and he's going to smash a watermelon with it.
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Old 01-12-2016, 03:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Binx B View Post

And while you might need to provide company with some incentive to come over, you'll never improve your situation with all that drinking and gambling
Au contraire, me Binx. I supplemented my income in the oil-fields regularly with bouts of drinking and gambling.

Of course I made sure most of the drinking was done by my erstwhile guests while most of the gambling was done by me. I did quite well.
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Old 01-12-2016, 03:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Prodigalson View Post
Of course I made sure most of the drinking was done by my erstwhile guests while most of the gambling was done by me. I did quite well.
Excellent strategy! I'm far more adept at drinking than gambling, so that wouldn't work for me.

BTW, I love the word wazzock. Problem, is no one here will know what it means, so I can't really use it. I learned the word fuckwit from a guy over there, but that's kind of self-explanatory.
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Old 01-12-2016, 03:50 PM
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Oh, and to the OP, sorry to go off topic. But I'm only on my second book, so I'll have to get back to you.
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Old 01-12-2016, 06:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Binx B View Post
Oh, and to the OP, sorry to go off topic.

LAIR!!

You are not...
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Old 01-13-2016, 03:10 AM
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Originally Posted by brianpatrick View Post

LAIR!!

Den!!
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Old 01-13-2016, 04:52 AM
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Burrow!!!
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Old 01-13-2016, 04:53 AM
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Originally Posted by brianpatrick View Post
LAIR!!

You are not...
I know. It was a lead in for a joke. Of course, I only THINK I'm funny so...
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Old 01-13-2016, 06:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Binx B View Post
I know. It was a lead in for a joke. Of course, I only THINK I'm funny so...

Yeah, I crack myself up too... My wife, not so much.
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Old 01-14-2016, 01:36 AM
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i was curious to see what was in this thread and about what people posted and why.

I don't think there are 3 books anyone shuld read. I think the choice should be tailored to the person who is asking. Judging by the first three posts, I'd recommend different books to all three posters. Forcing people to read books becaue either we think they're great or because we think it will improve them as people is silly.

People get force fed books in school. that's why 50% of people hate Shakespeare and catcher in the rye. outside of school people should be allowed to make their own choices even if they aren't considered intelligent enough or tasteful enough.
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Old 01-14-2016, 04:28 AM
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I wouldn't presume to tell anyone what he or she should read. I think any "should" or "must" read list that isn't compiled by some kind of broader consensus is going to mostly be an exercise in vanity.
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Old 01-14-2016, 05:18 AM
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Originally Posted by brianpatrick View Post
Yeah, I crack myself up too... My wife, not so much.
Oh no. Maybe my wife is just faking it. They do that sometimes you know.
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Old 01-14-2016, 09:01 PM
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The second woman I married faked being a wife. She wasn't very good at it, though. I figured it out.
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Mr. Ed said I should use his signature, since he's not anymore. In honor of his good friend Nok, here it is: "As far as smoking a cigar," she said, "I'd not know where to start or how to start." "It's simple," said I, "You light one end and chew on the other and hope to meet in the middle."
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Old 01-15-2016, 03:10 AM
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When men are in the equation, boys, you get used to faking it.
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Old 01-16-2016, 04:37 AM
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Heh. I think we're past that.

Sometimes there are still fireworks, other times it's like, OK, let's put the kids to bed and just get this done.
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Old 01-16-2016, 10:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Prodigalson View Post
The second woman I married faked being a wife. She wasn't very good at it, though. I figured it out.
Wonder how she felt about you.
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Old 01-17-2016, 01:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Binx B View Post
Heh. I think we're past that.

Sometimes there are still fireworks, other times it's like, OK, let's put the kids to bed and just get this done.
Is that a thing? Because I remember someone else using those exact words here a while back.
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Old 01-17-2016, 03:16 PM
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Originally Posted by NokturnalMe View Post
Wonder how she felt about you.
I remember her eyes clicking like a camera lens the instant I said, "I do." It was like, "Gotcha."

There must have been something there she wanted.
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Mr. Ed said I should use his signature, since he's not anymore. In honor of his good friend Nok, here it is: "As far as smoking a cigar," she said, "I'd not know where to start or how to start." "It's simple," said I, "You light one end and chew on the other and hope to meet in the middle."
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Old 01-18-2016, 12:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Prodigalson View Post
I remember her eyes clicking like a camera lens the instant I said, "I do." It was like, "Gotcha."

There must have been something there she wanted.
Probably wanted a taste of your cigar.
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