Thursday, December 21, 2006

It's All About Meme

The wise and well-traveled Generik of the Generik Blog has tagged me with a book meme. Thanks pal. The rules of this meme, or so he claims, are:

* Find the nearest book
* Name the book
* The author
* Turn to page 123
* Go to the fifth sentence on the page
* Copy out the next three sentences and post to your blog.
* Tag three more folks.

When I first realized I'd been tagged I was in my office at work, where I have only three actual bound books; Elkouri and Elkouri's "How Arbitration Works," Fairweather's "Practice and Procedure in Labor Arbitration," and a Merriam Webster Office Dictionary. All valuable books, but none designed in a way that accomodates this exercise. I didn't think this would work, but thought I'd give it a try anyway. No dice. By the time you reach the fifth sentence of page 123 in Both Elkouri and Fairweather you're either on page 124 or into the footnotes. As for the dictionary, well, it's a dictionary. Need I say more?

So now I'm home, and though my first impulse was to grab the book on my nightstand, "Shalimar the Clown," by Salman Rushdie, the book nearest the computer is actually "Sweet Relief, The Marla Ruzicka Story," by Jennifer Abrahamson, which sat on a kitchen chair waiting to be wrapped for Christmas. The sixth through eighth sentences on page 123 are:
Marla, Bay, and NPR corespondent Ivan Watson were decked out in 1970s formal wear they'd fished out of a Kabul thrift store. Marla teetered on Black foan sandals in a slinky minidress that shimmered.
A couple of hours after the Prom's kickoff, Marla dragged herself off the dance floor and circulated with a wool Afghan hat she used for collecting donations.
I've previously written about Marla and I've been thinking about her the last couple of days because Debbie Schlussel has again seeped up out of the fetid swamp she dwells in to pollute our public discourse. I first became acquainted with this Schlussel creature when, on the occasion of Marla Ruzicka's death, Schlussel chose to pen an article that revealed just how soulless and inhuman somebody inhabiting a nearly-human-appearing body can be. I won't link to it here because it truly was the most vile ejaculation to appear on the internet. Her current effort, though no less mean-spirited and morally corrupt, is somehow less soul-sapping. Her point, such as it is, is that because Barack Obama is descended from Muslims we cannot assume that his loyalties don't lie with Islamist extremists and we cannot therefore trust him in a position of leadership in this country. That is an accurate expression of her "thoughts," though she presented them far less coherently. I just want to point out that, whatever religion his familial predecessors adhered to, he is quite famously Christian. While Schlussel's point was both racist and inane, Paperwight finds chilling antecedents for it.

Meanwhile, back to the meme. Who shall I tag as a Christmas present? Well, because she's got the blog name I wish I'd thought of, I've got to hit Mags, of You Forgot Poland. Because he clearly needs some motivation to post I'm tagging Scaramouche. And for the same reason, as well as because we miss him, John, of blogenlust.

Update: I'm a little slow on this, for which I profusely apologize, but two of my three taggees have their response up (John is the slacker here, too busy as he is reveling in the glories of a Packers' 8-8 season). Well done, Mags and Scaramouche!
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