Sunday, August 13, 2006

Curmudgeon in the Wry 326

Sunday, August 13, 2006---640 Words---Average reading time: 2-minutes, 21 seconds (time frittered away)
Offending readers one issue at a time since 2001.
Almost completely free of original ideas.
Often wrong…but never in doubt.
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Rave: Jack Elam
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Currently reading: Daniel Judson’s “The Darkest Place”.
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On the Victrola: “Stepping Out of A Dream” by Nat King Cole…another in the Starbucks Hear Music series.
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Rant: I would love to have watched the PBS special on Walter Cronkite a couple of weeks back, had anyone rather than Katie Couric been the host. Well, maybe not everyone…Bryant Gumble, Chris Berman, Joe Buck, Martha Stewart, Rick Sutcliffe, Oprah, Deborah Norville, Tim McCarver and John Kruk {among others} would have prompted me to eschew the show as well.
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Rant: Skip Carey, Dwight Jaynes agree that poker may be fun, but it is not a sport.
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Rant: One reason so many people don’t use turn signals is the blinker switch is operated by the same hand that’s holding the cell phone.
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Rave: Bravo to Marriott for going 100% smoke-free in all their US properties. That sets quite a standard.
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Rave: The basic tenet of Daniel Silva’s “The Messenger” is that Saudi petrodollars are financing Islamic Fascist Terrorism…not much of a stretch for me.
Abdul Aziz al-Bakari is the Saudi billionaire bankrolling the terrorists in this fascinating, intelligent, stylish and well-researched tale of international intrigue.
A plot to assassinate the Pope and destroy the Vatican leaves 700 murdered and St. Peter’s Basilica badly damaged…the Pope spared due to the efforts of Gabriel Allon (Israeli intelligence officer, assassin and patriot).
An attack upon Allon’s mentor and celebrated Israeli spymaster follows.
Allon organizes a team to locate the former Saudi intelligence agent responsible (Shafiq). Shafiq is well protected and secreted deep among the layers of al-Bakari’s vast financial empire.
Intense preparation, timely CIA support, and shrewdness, ingenuity: all are necessary to place a mole inside the world of al-Bakari---nicknamed Jihad, Inc.
The entire cast of abhorrent villains and dedicated good guys are fully portrayed and come to life on the pages. The locations truly matter to the story and the deft plotting grabs you from page one.
“The messenger” will keep you up, make you think and entertain you…quite a trifecta.
A magnificent novel…not to be missed.
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Rant: There should be a warning sticker on all cell phones that says, “You may think you’re talking normally when you’re not.”
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Hmmmm: I love Michelle Wie, but I think she needs to beat the girls before trying to beat the guys.
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Truism: Never trust a beauty shop that has no mirrors.
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Truism II: Ahhh, Florida in the summer, where parking in the shade is an art form.
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Rant: Baseball players who wear their pants down to their shoes.
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Rave: The US Post Office has outdone themselves with two recent commemoration stamp issues. The DC Comics Superheroes set and the Baseball Sluggers collection (Mel Ott, Roy Campanella, Hank Greenberg and Mickey Mantle) and an eye to behold. They are truly attention getters and mood elevators. Bravo!
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Rave: The new format for the Tucker Carlson show on MSNBC. Only wish there was a repeat later in the evening.
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Hmmm: Am I the only one who notices that the small SUVs and hatchbacks look a lot like the old Gremlins and Pacers we made fun of so long ago?
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Quote: “The most talented quarterback in the ACC wears No. 3 for Duke _ for the Blue Devils' basketball team.”--- Caulton Tudor. That would be point guard Greg Paulus, the nation's No. 1 rated high school quarterback in the class of 2005.
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If you can read this, thank a teacher. If you are reading it in English thank a Veteran.
That is all.
As you were.









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