One More Week

One more week of being in my sucky 40s.  The second half was light years ahead of the first half; still, gotta say they averaged out to darn sucky.

Think of this: it’s not terribly common, but not unheard of, for someone to die of natural causes at my age.  & it’s not terribly common, but not unheard of, for someone to live to 100.  That’s a difference of an entire lifespan.  I could die next week, or I could live another entire life the length of which I’ve already had.


Noodle’s Extremely Succinct Summation of the 20 Democratic Presidential Candidates Based on Their Books

Yes, Book Corner was on a little bit of a hiatus, as I undertook a little reading side project.  Kindle lets you sample books for free.  I decided to sample the/a book of each of the (then) TWENTY Democratic presidential candidates, in alphabetical order; and see if there were any that I felt I could stomach reading in their entirety.  Surprisingly, there were quite a few.  But I’m a pushover for memoir.

Note that the length of samples on Kindle varies wildly.  Sometimes I would barely get through an introduction before they’d cut me off.  Other times I wondered if I had accidentally bought the whole book.

Here are my extremely brief opinions based on mostly extremely brief samples.

Bennet – (I know, Who?) – Seems to have an interesting background with a mix of business & government experience.

Biden – idyllic 1950s Catholic childhood.

Booker – emphasis on how he “stands on the shoulders of giants”.

Buttigieg – Very interesting introduction, not about him, but about his Midwestern ex-factory town having gone bust.  This one is in my top 5 to read entirely.

Castro – Beginning is all about his Mexican immigrant orphaned grandmother’s childhood migration experience.  Wait a minute, I might have mixed this one up with Herbert.

DeBlasio – no book.

Delaney – Proud to have been voted Congress’ third-most bipartisan member!  Yay!  I’m all about the aisle-reaching.

Gabbard – Has a book… but no sample, for some reason.  It is possible the book is too short for a sample to be monetarily feasible for Amazon.

Gillibrand – Big on the feminist woman stuff.

Harris – All about her superstar independent Indian mom.

Hickenlooper – Surprisngly dull, considering he has a background in running brewpubs.  Writing style is very digressive, and the story contains lots of relationship crap about his marital troubles.

Herbert – (I know, Who?) – See Castro

Inslee – A TOTALLY different book from the others, about climate change.

Klobuchar – Midwestern Swiss grandparents.

Ryan – Mindfulness.  Ugh.

Sanders – Surprisingly one of the most interesting ones, considering I have no time for his one-note socialism  But he’s got that New Yorker-turned-Vermonter thing going on, so as a memoir, I’m into it.

Warren – Wow.  I’ll come back to this one.

Williamson – Louise Hay 2020!!!

Yang – Off topic.  WAY off topic.

And I’m leaving one out.  I forget who, someone else besides De Blasio who didn’t have a book.  Oh – must have been Swalwell.  Who’s out, anyway.

The one book I am definitely going back to is Elizabeth Warren’s.  This one’s a game changer.  I had not much interest in her before, as a candidate – I respected her Trump barbs and courage and outspokenness in Congress, but policy-wise, she just seemed like Sanders Lite.  Well, I’m hooked now.  I’ve left Team Biden – he is just going to majorly screw up somewhere along the way and lose the election, is my fear… I’m Team Warren now.  She makes me feel how lucky I am to have been born when and where I was, a time and place (and genetics and parents) that enabled me to launch myself into the middle class and beyond quite easily.  Now I see how the young and even not-so-young people of today don’t have it that easy.  I used to think it was all a big sob story…. but kind of like when I read Grapes of Wrath, this book is making me actually see the error or my ways.  Not many books do that.



Book Corner 2019.30


Love Your Enemies by Arthur C. Brooks ****

This message can’t get out there enough.  If there is one idea with which the whole of my being resonates, it is that compassion and understanding are the way forward from the current unspeakable mess that we have lately made of this country, which is the shame of my generation.

Brooks’ message has a lot in common with that of my boyfriend* Jonathan Haidt, of THE RIGHTEOUS MIND and THE CODDLING OF THE AMERICAN MIND.  In fact he quotes and draws on Haidt’s words and research.  I recommend the above as companion volumes, particularly RIGHTEOUS MIND.

I will be looking out for Brooks’ column in the Washington Post from now on.

* Jonathan Haidt is not actually my boyfriend.  I use this term whenever I am madly in love with a particular author’s work.