Monday, January 28, 2008

New Book Source

Tonight I skipped running while the kids were at PSR & instead went to the library with my own books to read. Walking in the door, I had to stop at the two tables of books they had for sale. I ended up buying 5 books for the grand total of $1.50--this just cannot be beaten. I will be popping in other libraries as well and checking out their for sale tables also. I ended up getting a hardcover of Anthem by Ayn Rand, The Portrait of a Lady by Henry James, Call It Sleep by Henry Roth, Ten Thousand Lovers by Edeet Ravel and God Clobbers Us All by Poe Ballantine. I just did a quick check through some reviews and it sounds like each book is very good. I am very happy with adding these to my expanding collection. The first 3 are basically classics--even though I hadn't heard of Call It Sleep before tonight, I saw it is on Time's Top 100 list since 1923. Ten Thousand Lovers is kind of a lovestory in Israel and since I seem to have an attachment to read and learn about Israel I figured why not. I bought the Poe Ballantine book simply because when I was reading the about author section it mentioned he now lives in Chadron, NE--I have to support in my own way NE authors or at least those that live in NE.

I was going to show each book to my wife tonight when I got home, but she just saw them and questioned if I had room for them. She isn't feeling well so I didn't push it and explain each book, even though I am kind of excited about getting them. I guess that is one reason I am blogging, so I can express myself here when in real life it doesn't always seem to matter to anyone else.

No State of the Union for me, I just wasn't excited enough to care/want to watch it. Even though it is GWB's final one, to me it is also his 8th one. I guess I am just too disappointed in his presidency to now get worked up about what he was going to say in a speech. I do think he has accomplished some very good things while in office, tax cuts & nominations to federal courts--especially the Supreme Court, I just think there should have been much more done. I watched a little post speech roundtable/tv screen on MSNBC where they mentioned he is threatening Veto now on spending bills with too many earmarks. Where was this from day 1 along with forcefully pushing for the Line Item Veto. I saw a Romney commercial last fall that mentioned this, where he would not be afraid to use the Veto on spending bills. I think that commercial has stuck with me and is a factor in why I support him today. I guess I see Romney and Bush as similar candidates, I just hope if Romney gains the Presidency his term will not be the disappointment that Bush's has become to me. Tomorrow's Florida primary will go a long way in determining if Romney will get the nomination or not. Those same talking heads felt Romney was getting a late push in Florida but the latest polling data was showing him 3 points behind McCain, within margin of error(something I didn't hear mentioned tonight).

Sunday, January 27, 2008

2nd Book Finished in January

Just yesterday I was typing about how I was going to focus on One Day in the Life... and try to get it read before the end of January. Well, I stayed up too late yesterday and put some more time in tonight and it is now done. I really like this book, if I am remembering right this is the 3rd time I have read it. I had to read it for a class in college, I think I took Soph year, it was Dr Sanchez in the History Dept. I can't remember the title of the class but this book along with For Whom the Bells Toll, a couple Primo Levi books and another about Italy around that time. While I am sure that I didn't appreciate the class at that time, looking back he really introduced us(the students)to some great literature. Now that I think about it I also did a Spanish Civil War class with Dr Sanchez, so For Whom... might have been with that class instead.

I know before One Day... I really hadn't been exposed to the gulags and what was going on in Russia under Stalin. I kind of remember this book being a slap in the face kind of book to me, in that the suffering and treatment of life was almost so meaningless. The cold Siberian work camps where prisoners really weren't expected to ever get out really shows how fleeting life could be. Also makes you appreciate the good fortune in your life. Something as simple as just being born in the US instead of almost anywhere else in the world is something that many of us here take for granted. The hardships and struggles going on elsewhere are really hard to comprehend. One Day... I think really brings this home, at least to me. It had been far too long in between readings of this book--I think the 2nd reading was shortly after college maybe early '90s.

I am off work tomorrow so I might try to find a new book yet tonight so I can maybe put some time in on it tomorrow. Of course I am still reading Wuthering Heights, I did actually get a few pages read last night also. Not sure if I will look for a 3rd book right away or not also--I would guess not.

Saturday, January 26, 2008


Well I finally got back out there and did a run, first time in 12 days. I was able to get in 5 miles with a pace somewhere around 12:10. I went to a nearby park that is basically flat--I didn't want too much of a challenge today. The weather was supposed to have gotten up to around 50 today, but it still seemed to have a chill in the air when I was running--I was out from like 4:30 to 5:30. Glad I was able to just get this run in. I don't know if I will try to get another one in tomorrow or just wait for my Monday night PSR run.

I have kind of come up with a goal of reading 2 books a month--don't know if I can accomplish this all year or not, but would at least like to do so this first month. Since a Day in the Life of Ivan D is a shorter book I am focusing on it right now in an attempt to get it finished before January runs out. I will still try to get few pages read in Wuthering Heights also just to kind of keep it current in my mind.

One of these days I am going to figure out how to post pictures to this blog. Debbie--my wife--took a great photo of Thomas outside on our patio with a bunch of Ts written in sidewalk chalk all around him that he had just done himself. His writing progress has been seemingly slow he is making progress. Later I asked him to make each letter in his name and while the A, H and M were sloppy I could tell he was trying. He does his Os and he was out of room on the scrape paper to even try his S.

Creighton lost a tough game at Carbondale. It certainly looked like they had control of the game and then everything seemed to fall apart on offense. This along with some big shots by Carbondale put the game even with just a few minutes. Creighton in the end missed some key free throws and could get nothing else on offense going. It was a tough loss. I am not sure Creighton can get a bid to the NCAA anymore--looks like it will be down to winning the MVC tourney to get in. Creighton has a young team, so the future looks real promising, but still would like to see this team make the NCAAs and give them a taste of that experience to carry forward. The game was on ESPN2 so that is how I was actually able to see it, missed the first half, but caught the whole 2nd half.

I don't know how soon for pitchers and catchers to report, but I am starting it want baseball to get back up and running. There is really not much left as far as player movement to happen anymore other than some minor signings and the whole Santana trade if it happens. I don't expect the Cardinals to make anymore moves unless something just kind of falls into their lap. I wouldn't be surprised to see Kennedy moved and Miles installed at 2nd, but this isn't the right time for that move to happen. Kennedy could be a spring training trade but more likely a during the season trade is what I would expect. Since he missed time last year with an injury as well as just having a bad season, I don't think there is much of a market for him until he proves something in either spring training or early in the season.

Well, I'm off to get a few pages in before calling it a night.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008


It didn't seem like much went on today other than normal work stuff while at work. There was a blood drive at work so at least I milked an hour away from my desk that way. Along with nice feeling that I was doing something good. Since I have gone on a running hiatus and not doing the marathon, there were no training runs being affected by my donating blood.

The other semi-interesting thing was that I stopped at the used bookstore on the way home after work. I actually bought 6 books for $10 and change. I bought Moll Flanders, The Phantom of the Opera, Anne of Green Gables, The Grapes of Wrath, The Rule of Four and The Partner. The last two I was looking for something a little newer and more of a light read, since they each only cost a buck I figured I would take that chance. I just checked and oops I already have a copy of The Grapes of Wrath, oh well the one from today has a little larger font so still good. I might wait a couple weeks and take the other copy to the bookstore and see if I can get some store credit for it. Anyway Anne of Green Gables and The Grapes of Wrath were bought certainly under the influence of that list of 100 books from yesterday. Also notice yesterday I didn't have Anne of Green Gables down as a book I was interested in reading--since it cost $1.50 and was on the list it was good enough. Also I kind of figure this might be a book my daughter Rose would be reading in a few short years. She loves reading and when the Little House books become her interest this one would probably fit as well.

Well I was also thinking about that list of 100 books. I am not sure who compiled it, I am guessing it was just one person's thoughts. I find it interesting that all--at least I think all--of the Harry Potter books are on the list. While I don't have a lot of interest in them myself, again I think this is something that I might be reading to my kids or with my kids in a few years. I think I would enjoy that as well. I have heard very good things about the books so maybe I should just start reading them anyway. Of course my pile of books to read is already pretty large. I also thought it was interesting after I thought about it that there was no Hemingway on the list. I would certainly put For Whom the Bells Toll on it. The other author I noticed missing was Hawthorne--The Scarlet Letter. Maybe The Last of the Mohicans by Cooper or a book of poetry by Whitman. I am not too surprised Michener didn't make it, I just don't see his name show up on many lists. Of course Centennial and Roots--Haley--were probably bigger mini-series growing up for me than they were books & maybe that influenced this list.

I do think the list was a success for me in that it has been on my mind since I saw it & it will probably influence some of what I read in the coming months. I kind of wonder what my list of 100 books would be, but I think that would have to be another time. I just don't think I want to put my time into that right now. Well all of this talk/typing about books is getting me to want to stop typing and start reading. I should get past 100 pages into Wuthering Heights tonight and will probably put some time into A Day in the Life of Ivan D yet also. I am also kicking around the idea of starting a 3rd book, but I should probably get a little farther on with the 2 before doing that--at least that is what I am telling myself.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

100 Books List

I found this list on another site--Stacey and liked the list so I brought it over. Since it seems a lot of my time spent here is talking about what I am reading I thought this was kind of appropriate. Anyway, thanks again for the list Stacey.

I saw this on Joan's blog a bit ago, and felt I needed to post my list. Nothing will happen if you don't repost this on your own blog, but it is pretty nifty to see what everyone else has / has not, would / would not like to read.The point is to bold the books you have read, italicize the ones you would LIKE to read, and leave the others alone. (Seeing movie versions of any of these titles does NOT count, however!)

1. The Da Vinci Code (Dan Brown)
2. Pride and Prejudice (Jane Austen)
3. To Kill A Mockingbird (Harper Lee)
4. Gone With The Wind (Margaret Mitchell)
5. The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King (Tolkien)
6. The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring (Tolkien)
7. The Lord of the Rings: Two Towers (Tolkien)
8. Anne of Green Gables (L.M. Montgomery)
9. Outlander (Diana Gabaldon)
10. A Fine Balance (Rohinton Mistry)
11. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Rowling)
12. Angels and Demons (Dan Brown)
13. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Rowling)
14. A Prayer for Owen Meany (John Irving)
15. Memoirs of a Geisha (Arthur Golden)
16. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (Rowling)
17. Fall on Your Knees (Ann-Marie MacDonald)
18. The Stand (Stephen King)
19. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Rowling)
20. Jane Eyre (Charlotte Bronte) - high school so probably need to re-read
21. The Hobbit (Tolkien)
22. The Catcher in the Rye (J.D. Salinger)
23. Little Women (Louisa May Alcott)
24. The Lovely Bones (Alice Sebold)
25. Life of Pi (Yann Martel)
26. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (Douglas Adams)
27. Wuthering Heights (Emily Bronte)--in process
28. The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe (C. S. Lewis)
29. East of Eden (John Steinbeck)
30. Tuesdays with Morrie (Mitch Albom)
31. Dune (Frank Herbert)
32. The Notebook (Nicholas Sparks)
33. Atlas Shrugged (Ayn Rand)
34. 1984 (Orwell)
35. The Mists of Avalon (Marion Zimmer Bradley)
36. The Pillars of the Earth (Ken Follett)
37. The Power of One (Bryce Courtenay)
38. I Know This Much is True (Wally Lamb)
39. The Red Tent (Anita Diamant)
40. The Alchemist (Paulo Coelho)
41. The Clan of the Cave Bear (Jean M. Auel)
42. The Kite Runner (Khaled Hosseini)
43. Confessions of a Shopaholic (Sophie Kinsella)
44. The Five People You Meet In Heaven (Mitch Albom)
45. Bible --Sad I know that I haven't read it yet.
46. Anna Karenina (Tolstoy)
47. The Count of Monte Cristo (Alexandre Dumas)
48. Angela’s Ashes (Frank McCourt)
49. The Grapes of Wrath (John Steinbeck) -- high school so need to re-read
50. She’s Come Undone (Wally Lamb)
51. The Poisonwood Bible (Barbara Kingsolver)
52. A Tale of Two Cities (Dickens)
53. Ender’s Game (Orson Scott Card)
54. Great Expectations(Dickens)--high school
55. The Great Gatsby (Fitzgerald)
56. The Stone Angel (Margaret Laurence)
57. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Rowling)
58. The Thorn Birds (Colleen McCullough)
59. The Handmaid’s Tale (Margaret Atwood)
60. The Time Traveller’s Wife (Audrew Niffenegger)

61 to 64 were missing on Stacey's list -- see end.

65. Fifth Business (Robertson Davis)
66. One Hundred Years Of Solitude (Gabriel Garcia Marquez)
67. The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants (Ann Brashares)
68. Catch 22 - Heller
69. Les Miserables (Hugo)
70. The Little Prince (Antoine de Saint-Exupery)
71. Bridget Jones’s Diary (Fielding)
72. Love in the Time of Cholera (Marquez)
73. Shogun (James Clavell)
74. The English Patient (Michael Ondaatje)
75. The Secret Garden (Frances Hodgson Burnett)
76. The Summer Tree (Guy Gavriel Kay)
77. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (Betty Smith)
78. The World According To Garp (John Irving)
79. The Diviners (Margaret Laurence)
80. Charlotte’s Web (E.B. White) --long long ago
81. Not Wanted On The Voyage (Timothy Findley)
82. Of Mice And Men (Steinbeck)
83. Rebecca (Daphne DuMaurier)
84. Wizard’s First Rule (Terry Goodkind)
85. Emma (Jane Austen)
86. Watership Down(Richard Adams)
87. Brave New World (Aldous Huxley)
88. The Stone Diaries (Carol Shields)
89. Blindness (Jose Saramago)
90. Kane and Abel (Jeffrey Archer)
91. In The Skin Of A Lion (Ondaatje)
92. Lord of the Flies (Golding)
93. The Good Earth (Pearl S. Buck)
94. The Secret Life of Bees (Sue Monk Kidd)
95. The Bourne Identity (Robert Ludlum)
96. The Outsiders (S.E. Hinton)
97. White Oleander (Janet Fitch)
98. A Woman of Substance (Barbara Taylor Bradford)
99. The Celestine Prophecy (James Redfield)
100. Ulysses (James Joyce)

If I checked on some of those ignored, I would probably put them into the need to read section. 23 read, not sure if that would be good or bad especially since I am not really sure where this list came from. For those 4 missing books, I would have to put War & Peace and Crime & Punishment in there--so that gives me 25 in my twisted mind kind of way.

I am kind of glad to find this list, hopefully it will kind of re-energize me on my reading--which I need along with about everything else going on in my life.

Saturday, January 19, 2008


No weekend run for me, unless something falls funny on Sunday. I was even off Friday but no running. At this point I am kind of questioning if I really want to put the work & effort into running a 3rd marathon. My training was going okay, but I don't think at this point I could say my time would improve on the 5:06 I ran last year. Not that time is all I am worried about, but I guess I am kind of in a lull right now about running a marathon, at least the St Louis Marathon for a 3rd time. I am kind of worried though if I push it back to a later marathon, I will probably not do it either since that would require traveling and a hotel night, etc.

Of course if it wasn't in the teens today as a high, I probably would have gotten out at one point this afternoon and gotten my long run in. I could have also gotten to the Community Center and gotten some kind of run in(probably around 5 miles) also. I guess it is probably time for me to check out for what else is out there and see.

Well, our bedroom is painted and the carpet, pad and tack stripes are pulled up and removed. The hardwood floors look good, which is really kind of surprising--only 2 spots right at the closet doors and one other spot in a corner have been patched with regular wood. We will see about throw carpets for these. My father-in-law mentioned he might have some extra wood from when their floors were installed also. Also he found the problem with 2 of our outlets in the bedroom, the copper wire broke from the screw in the electrical box--don't know why but all should be good now. This is important because one of these outlets will probably be used for our 2nd TV once it is hooked up in the bedroom. By the way this painting and stuff is a big reason why the running wasn't done this weekend also.

Romney won the Nevada caucus and McCain won in S Carolina today. I haven't watched any of the TV analysis of this yet but guessing Thompson won't be long for the race now. Not sure where this puts Huckabee, my guess is looking for an invite to be VP--which I don't see likely unless maybe from Rudy. Of course I haven't even seen the results in SC yet so maybe it is close enough for him to claim some kind of win. I really think it is now down to Romney, McCain and Rudy(if people remember he is running). I still like Romney and really don't like Rudy and could probably live with McCain--at least that is how I feel at this point. My feeling is McCain is getting a lot of support from Independents and Democrats switching over in the primaries so far. While these are certainly good things for a general election, I don't think he can sustain this and win the nomination. It is going to be interesting to see what kind of push Rudy puts in these next couple of weeks since he has been targeting the 2/5 primaries and basically ignoring the earlier stuff. I still feel that conservative's best candidate is Romney and I hope that is how it plays out. My one brother tried to convince me over Christmas that Thompson was the conservative's best candidate. My argument at the time was Thompson didn't really look interested in campaigning and I think I have been proven to be correct.

Sorry I have no real thoughts on the Democrats other than I still think Richardson should have been a lot more attractive to Democrats. I think by the end of the primary season, even the Dems are going to be tired of hearing about Hillary and Obama. I also think Obama hasn't been hit hard yet and I think Hillary and her team is trying to decide if they can win without doing so. Unfortunately for them, waiting till after 2/5 might be too late also. Again should be interesting to see if anything negative comes out against Obama in the next couple of weeks--I kind of am expecting it. Without seeing any results or hearing analysis, not sure where Edwards is in all of this either. I think Edwards just kind of fades away since I haven't really seen him as a factor anyway--again surprised Richardson have more traction.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Been a few days

It has been a few days, but I guess there just hasn't been much that I have wanted to sit down and type about.

The girls watched High School Musical II upstairs tonight. That left Thomas & me to play in the basement. That also means lots of music. We went through Simon & Garfunkel's Greatest Hits a couple of times, some Neil Diamond's Greatest Hits, Rolling Stones Let It Bleed and finishing up with some Janis Joplin's Greatest Hits.

While this has been playing he has sat in my lap with his clapper, danced, played wiffleball and some soccer/catch/whatever that was. Now it is past time for bed & he is wanting his snack & getting crabby quick so this will be a short note tonight.

Today was spent painting our bedroom. It is mostly done, just a few things to finish up probably tomorrow.

Well of to get snack & then bed for the little guy.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

The Weekend

Not really an exciting weekend but enough to give me something to type away at.

First, Saturday morning was the first day of Girl Scout cookie sales. I took Rose around the neighborhood for a couple of hours and did pretty well. I would have liked to get a few more houses in but she was done. Her legs were hurting her she was saying.

Right after finishing up the cookie stuff, I went for my long run. I did 12 miles. I did my normal 8 mile route and extended it in a couple of areas. This is kind of my normal way of doing it the last couple of years--my 8 mile route also goes up to 20 miles when I need for my long runs in marathon training. The first 7 miles were all good, although my legs felt a little tired, I just chalked it up to walking around doing cookie sales right before the run. I was running low on water so I stopped to get a Gatorade at a gas station right after I finished my 7th mile--with that stop that mile came in just under 14 minutes--oh well. The next gas station was 2 to 2 1/2 miles away on the route so it was a good thing I stopped then. Also since I haven't bought any gue yet, I think the Gatorade gave me a little extra that I wasn't getting from the water. Well the 9th mile is a long gradual uphill that always give me trouble, the good thing about it is this stretch of road I really credit for getting me ready for the marathon. Well I really pushed myself up this hill and could really feel my legs just burning from the workout--good stuff although I am still feeling it today(Sunday). Well the last 3 miles then went pretty slow, the 10th mile is another long incline and even the 11th as well but much less noticeable.

Saturday night was my work Holiday Party. A couple of years ago, they switched it to January from December and dropped Christmas for Holiday. No big deal on the name change for me and I actually like it better in January--December is already busy enough. It was nice, talked to a few people and the food was good. Stuck around for few songs and then called it a night.

Today I just spent most of it around the house. Debbie & Rose went to Mass in the morning(I went at 5 last night). I threw together a leftover stew--had some pork cutlets, green onions, green peppers, part of tomato, leftover rice and added a can of cooked chicken, diced tomatos and broth with some seasoning salt--not too bad. Debbie liked it, but she also said she was starving so her judgement may have been clouded. Anyway Debbie took the kids along with her mom and met others at the Bee Movie. I was able to stay home and watch some football. I also did some laundry to make it look like I got something accomplished while they were gone.

Once they got home I was going grocery shopping and thought Thomas would come along, but he was adament on No. Debbie wasn't too happy about this but it is kind of nice to get the shopping done in some peace. Not much else to note went on, just a normal kind of night.

I think I have given up on Childhood's End--I never even got started on it. Just kind of looking for something else right now. I have pulled One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, I didn't realize it hadn't made my list of Books Read. I know I read it in college and I thought I had read it afterward as well, guess it could have been before I started my lists. Still reading Wuthering Heights, not making any big progress but kind of interesting what I have read. I thought I had started it once before and had gotten bored of it, but that isn't the case now and in fact after getting through the first 20 pages or so I can't imagine giving up on it. Now I still have a very long ways to go, I am around page 50 & my copy runs just over 400 pages. I have a feeling I will be at this book for quite a while still.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Stuff Update II

It is late but I want to get something down in the blog. Yesterday--Wed, I had planned to run 4 miles and then do a little lifting. Well I go to the Community Center and start on my run, I was doing it outside on the streets. The run went terrible, the first mile was 13 minute something and the 2nd was over 12:30. Before I finished the first mile I knew 4 wasn't happening. Turned around after 1 and did the mile back for 2. I then went in to do a little lifting. That went good, arms were feeling tired at end but overall I felt good. I then did 2 miles on the TM, 1st at 11:50 and 2nd at 12:10, pretty much right at 24 minutes. Glad I got those 2 miles in at the end.

No luck yet with the potty training. Today, Thursday, he finally had his accidents, 2 at school and then 1 at home in a pull-up. I think he was purposly holding it in, I just don't know how to get him to release on the potty. We'll just have to keep at it and see what happens.

Slowly reading Wuthering Heights. I kind of broke through the beginning part and now seems a little more interesting, but just haven't put any time into it the last couple of days. Haven't gotten past the prologue on Childhood's End yet. I do want to read it but it might get put back into my stacks and replaced with something else.

Also note that I am an alum of Saint Louis University, the school that only scored 20 points in a game tonight. I am glad that I had other things going on and missed this game--it just sounds ugly and probably boring. So far this team hasn't seen or absorbed much of the Majerus genius. I do wish that the old coach Soderberg was around this year to see what he would have accomplished with this team, since these are all players he brought in. Of course next years recruiting class has depth and size that Soderberg could never have dreamed of either, that is why he is not around right now.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Stuff Update

I actually didn't take Sunday off, instead of running though, I went to the Community Center & lifted. I probably did more than I should have on my 2nd lifting day. I was tired and a little sore when I got finished. Yesterday & today though have been good, so I probably won't back off much the next time.

I did get a run in yesterday while the kids were in PSR. It was a slow 4.0 miles. I am chalking it up to the hills of the route, lifting Sunday and anything else I can think of. Actually, with Saturday being a tough run, I shouldn't be too surprised that I just didn't bounce back that quick 2 days later. I am taking Tuesday off--no lifting or running and will do one or both on Wed & see how I respond.

We are working on Thomas' potty training again. I sat in the bathroom last night for 30-40 minutes, some gas but no #2. Again this morning for about 15 minutes, still nothing. I don't think he had gone on Sunday so he should be ready to explode. I hope Debbie gets him when he got home from school, but I doubt it. Of course, he may have exploded at school also. Well it is time for me to leave work & get home. I think this is skate night for Rose so I will probably be taking her. It is New Hampshire primary day, so I will be doing a little watching TV about this after the kids get in bed.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Long Run Today

Just a quick note today. I got my long run in today. I went for 11 miles, that gives me 20 for the week. I was a little tired & stiff at the end but made it through it good shape I guess. I went to Creve Coeur Park and took the route out across the Page Ext bridge over the Missouri River and then back to Creve Coeur Park. It was good weather except the wind was kind of tough coming back in. I will take Sunday off, and I think Monday is back to PSR for the kids so I will probably get in a run that night. Hope I won't be too stiff & sore still.

Friday, January 4, 2008

Books Read List Complete

I have been meaning to put my whole Books Read Lists somewhere on the computer for a few years now. Until now it is all just a single sheet of paper for each year--no backup system in place. So without further ado, or however that goes:

Books Read 2007
1. The Brothers Karamazov - Fyodor Dostoevsky, 936
2. Finishing Strong - Steve Farrar, 218
3. Adventures in the Mainstream - Greg Palmer, 315
4. The Story of the Confederacy - Robert Selph Henry, 470 H
5. Summer of '49 - David Halberstam, 322
6. Watership Down - Richard Adams, 475
7. One of Ours - Willa Cather, 459
8. My Brother, Ernest Hemingway - Leicester Hemingway, 256
9. The Light in the Forest - Conrad Richter, 117
10. Atlas Shrugged - Ayn Rand, 1084
11. The Bronx Zoo - Sparky Lyle & Peter Golenbock, 300
12. The Red Pony - John Steinbeck, 120
13. Hemingway and Jake - Vernon(Jake)Klimo & Will Oursler, 223
14. The Biography of Ancient Israel - Ilana Pardes, 160 H
15. How to Talk Back to Your Television Set - Nicholas Johnson, 209
16. The Looking Glass War - John LeCarre', 256

Books Read 2006
1. The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin - Benjamin Franklin, 254
2. Light on the Mountain(The Story of LaSalette) - John S Kennedy, 195
3. The Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger, 214
4. Old Jules - Mari Sandoz, 424
5. Golda: The Life of Israel's Prime Minister -Peggy Mann, 251
6. The Snows of Kilimanjaro and Other Stories - Ernest Hemingway, 154
7. O Pioneers! - Willa Cather, 199
8. When the Legends Die - Hal Borland, 216
9. A Cry of the Soul - Anne C Newbigging, 323 H
10. Antarctica: Escape From Disaster - Peter Lerangis, 239
11. Catch-22 - Joseph Heller, 570
12. Operation Kuwait - Harry Arvay, 146

Books Read 2005
1. Rainbow Six - Tom Clancy, 897
2. The Selling of the President 1968 - Joe McGinnis, 175
3. One True Thing - Anna Quindlen, 387
4. A Man in Full - Tom Wolfe, 787
5. Paper Money - Ken Follett, 253
6. The Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas, 618

Books Read 2004
1. Rascals in Paradise - James Michener & A Grove Day, 368
2. The Petersburg Cannes Express - Hans Koning, 208
3. Patriot Games - Tom Clancy, 503
4. "O" is for Outlaw - Sue Grafton, 318
5. Without Remorse - Tom Clancy, 750
6. Death Comes For the Archbishop - Willa Cather, 297
7. The Bourne Identity - Robert Ludlum, 535
8. The Hotel New Hampshire - John Irving, 450
9. The Courage to Start - John Bingham, 197

Books Read 2003
1. Captains Courageous - Rudyard Kipling, 249
2. The Bonfire of the Vanities - Tom Wolfe, 690
3. St Francis of Paola - Gino Simi & Mario Segreti, 209
4. The Civil War-A History - Harry Hansen, 654
5. McNally's Secret - Lawrence Sanders, 341
6. The Man From St Petersburg - Ken Follett, 342
7. Caravans - James Michener, 370
8. "M" is for Malice - Sue Grafton, 300
9. Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy, 807
10. North Dallas After 40 - Peter Gent, 411

Books Read 2002
1. "J" is for Judgement - Sue Grafton, 360
2. Overload - Arthur Hailey, 500
3. Noble House - James Clavell, 1370
4. Bluebeard - Kurt Vonnegut, 287
5. Kon-Tiki - Thor Heyerdahl, 230
6. It Pays to Steal - Maury Wills, 186
7. The Seventh Game - Roger Kahn, 321
8. The Eagle and the Raven - James Michener, 211

Books Read 2001
1. Hawaii - James Michener, 1130
2. Robinson Crusoe - Daniel Defoe, 298
3. The Contender - Robert Lipsyte, 136
4. The Golden Room - Irving Wallace, 365
5. The Idiot - Fyodor Dostoyevsky, 671
6. The Bridges at Toko-Ri - James Michener, 106
7. The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald, 186
8. The Rainmaker - John Grisham, 598
9. "I" is for Innocent - Sue Grafton, 329
10. Firm Ambitions - Michael Kahn, 303
11. Red Storm Rising - Tom Clancy, 725
12. Ellis Island - Fred Mustard Stewart, 365
13. Safe-Not Sorry - Phyllis Schlafly, 179
14. Another Season - Gene Stallings & Sally Cook, 213 H
15. For Whom the Bells Toll - Ernest Hemingway, 471
16. Bech: A Book - John Updike, 205
17. The Reincarnation of Peter Proud - Max Ehrlich, 276
18. The Cardinal of the Kremlin - Tom Clancy, 547

Books Read 2000
1. And Quiet Flows the Don - Mikhail Sholokhov, 616
2. The Client - John Grisham, 566
3. Rise to Globalism - Stephen Ambrose, 357
4. Six Days to Sunday - Bernard Brunner, 247
5. The Money-Changers - Arthur Hailey, 500
6. From Margin to Mainstream - Susan Hartmann, 190
7. Doctor No - Ian Fleming, 192
8. Life in a Medieval City - Joseph & Frances Gies, 229
9. Saudis: Inside the Desert Kingdom - Sandra Mackey, 437
10. A Time to Kill - John Grisham, 515
11. The Suicide Cult - Marshall Kilduff & Ron Javers, 201
12. A Case of Need - Michael Crichton, 416
13. To Have and Have Not - Ernest Hemingway, 262
14. Airport - Arthur Hailey, 500
15. Agent of Chaos - Norman Spinrad, 222

Books Read 1999
1. The Hunt For Red October - Tom Clancy, 469
2. Jurassic Park - Michael Crichton, 399
3. Caribbean - James Michener, 806
4. Good Enough to Dream - Roger Kahn, 348
5. JFK: A Complete Biography 1917-1963 - William Carr, 255
6. The Firm - John Grisham, 501
7. Hirohito: The War Years - Paul Manning, 231
8. The Life of John Cardinal Glennon Archbishop of St Louis - Nicholas Schneider, 221
9. War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy, 1455
10. Casino Royale - Ian Fleming, 144
11. The Man with the Golden Gun - Ian Fleming, 191
12. Hegel - Peter Singer, 86
13. Texas - James Michener, 1322
14. Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden, 428 H
15. Parenthood - Paul Rieser, 270(approx)H
16. My Antonia - Willa Cather, 175
17. The Way Things Ought To Be - Rush Limbaugh, 304 H
18. Pro Basketball Superstars - Bert Rosenthal & Bruce Lewitt, 176

Books Read 1998
1. The Valley of Horses - Jean Auel, 544
2. The Mammoth Huners - Jean Auel, 723
3. The Shore of Women - Pamela Sargent, 471
4. The Plains of Passage - Jean Auel, 865
5. "K" is for Killer - Sue Grafton, 292
6. Poland - James Michener, 616
7. The Right and the Power - Leon Jaworski, 337
8. Why Not The Best? - Jimmy Carter, 179
9. The Pelican Brief - John Grisham, 436
10. Congo - Michael Crichton, 313
11. "F" is for Fugitive - Sue Grafton, 308
12. A Dangerous Fortune - Ken Follett, 568
13. Alaska - James Michener, 1073
14. Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave - Frederick Douglass, 159
15. Texas Celebrity Turkey Trot - Peter Gent, 230

Books Read 1997--Estimated
1. The Joy Luck Club - Amy Tan, 332
2. 1984 - George Orwell, 267
3. Blind Ambition - John Dean, 402
4. All Quiet on the Western Front - Erich Maria Remarque, 175
5. The Clan of the Cave Bear - Jean Auel, 495
6. Senatorial Privilege - Leo Damore(condensed version), 121

The books were read in the order written under each year. I put an H at the end for the hardcover books that I could remember. I have found it helpful to be able to look back at what I have read to both inspire me to read more and also to see when it is time for some books to be re-read.

By the way I did finish up Cell, the Stephen King book. Not bad, good entertainment if you don't mind the gore and waste of human life throughout the book. Now I have only gotten into a couple of pages of Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte so I guess it is next. I will be looking for a 2nd book though as well.

Did get 2 miles in at the Community center tonight. Also did a little orientation in the weight room with a trainer. This is my wife's idea for the new year, to work out on weights--for her just to get exercise and for me to lose a few pounds that it seems running can't make go away. Tomorrow should be a long run of some sort I hope, at least the weather sounds like it should be good.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

'08 Election

Today is Iowa Caucus day. The results are coming in and it looks like Obama & Huckabee are the winners tonight. I am pretty conservative myself so mostly have been looking at the Republican contenders. About a month ago I would say Romney and Huckabee were the two candidates I was mostly considering. Today I am probably more for Romney--not sure how the Huckabee win in Iowa will affect his race though. I disliked Huckabee continually bringing up religion in this race. While I am not a believer of the Morman faith, I also don't think it really applies to how someone would perform as President or any other position in government for that matter. While this tactic certainly helped Huckabee in Iowa, I don't think it will help much in the other states coming up. New Hampshire it sounds like is going to be between Romney and McCain--another Romney loss and it might be too hard for his campaign to recover in time to win enough on Super Tuesday. It will be interesting to see if Huckabee is able to carry any momentum into the upcoming states--NH, S Carolina, Michigan, Florida and probably a couple others I am not thinking about right now.

It also looks like Thompson will come in 3rd just in front of McCain. I feel better about Thompson after talking to one of my brothers over Christmas. My brother Alan is a big supporter of Thompson at this point and helped convince me that Thompson might be another contender to look at. I saw the last Republican debate in Iowa just before Christmas and thought both McCain and Thompson really looked old, too old to be electable in my eyes. Part of that could be the long campaign and another could be that they realized almost no one would be watching this debate so they & their handlers might not have been as focused at getting them ready to look the part either.

As far as what I see/think about the Democratic side, I still think this is Hillary's race to lose. She has the money, recognition and on the ground workers that she should be able to win the nomination. Obama and Edwards are doing their best to make it a race though. Edwards with his populist format and Obama with his less on the issues and more on just a positive attitude/fresh look at politics, both could cause Hillary some problems in some states but I still think overall Hillary will win out.

It should be kind of a fun ride to see what happens in the next few months. I figure once the nominations get sorted out, we here in Missouri will be seeing or at least have the opportunity to see the candidates quite a bit. That is kind of fun being in a bellweather state.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Happy New Year

I hope everyone had a happy & safe New Year's Eve. We just hung out with Debbie's family, something we have been doing for the last several years. Don't really want to go out & party & spend money, much nicer to get together & play some cards. I have only watched about 5-10 minutes of football today, the bowl games & football altogether just hasn't been something I like spending time doing much anymore. Also with only one TV, it is usually easier to just have the cartoons on for the kids, I got to see the Sponge Bob movie again and it is still not very exciting.

I did get a run in today of 7 miles. It is cold & windy here and also a few snow flurries. It was tough running against the wind. I am just glad I got this run in, I need to get some miles built up after missing basically the last two weeks.

I did finish The Looking Glass War over the weekend so it is on my 2007 Books Read list. I am now just reading Cell the Stephen King novel. I am looking at a few others, Wuthering Heights is one I saw on my bookself & it has made it upstairs--but haven't started it yet and not sure if I will. Cell is getting interesting in the way King novels always seem to so might just keep at it & get it wrapped up sooner also.

I wanted to give some thought to this blog for the coming year, but haven't yet. In the back of my mind I am thinking about doing more than just basic journal entries, but haven't come up with anything else yet. Also, I do kind of enjoy the journal stuff, but figure it is pretty boring for anyone else that might stumble onto this. I will try to put some time into this & see what I come up with.

I also want to thank the people that have somehow found this blog and left a comment. It is always nice hearing for people. I have searched and read through a few other blogs but haven't left any comments yet--I really need to, because I enjoy getting them.

Enough for now I guess.