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July 12, 2004

From the "Literary News We Already Knew" Department

Reading is at risk!

Literary reading is down, says a newly completed study. Fewer than half of Americans now read literature.

Ugh. The microwave age has caught up to the bookshelf... why read a novel when you can hit a blog or watch TV?

As for Popping Culture, we just finished A Confederacy of Dunces. We're thinking that now we'll do our 100th re-read of The Alchemist, a life-changing book about following your dreams.


Posted by Dan at July 12, 2004 11:04 PM

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Personally, reading blogs definitely distracts me from doing as much book reading as I would do otherwise. But then, this has been a problem for me with all kinds of things--the internet in general, television, dvds. I am easily distracted by shiny pretty things.

So yeah, for me personally it tends to distract more than whet the appetite. However, blogging also can lead me to new books and help interest me in subjects that I can explore further in book format (my recent post on the oil crisis being an example). So it can have some good effect.

A blog like this, though, that's actually talks a lot about books will probably help with my reading. Already, I now intend on eventually getting and reading The Alchemist. And adding this into my daily blog reading will help remind me to turn away from the damn computer sometimes and do some book reading, as well.

Posted by: Joel Caris at July 13, 2004 04:20 PM


I would be interested in hearing your impressions when you finish it. Try to get a copy with the questions for study at the end. And don't read them until you finish the book proper.

Posted by: Big Dan at July 13, 2004 05:24 PM

I'll definitely let you know what I think once I've read it. May be awhile though . . .

Posted by: Joel Caris at July 14, 2004 02:43 AM

Dan, what did you think of Confederacy?

Posted by: PG at July 14, 2004 11:14 PM


It's one of the funniest books I've read, maybe ever. I can't quite visualize how they're going to make it into a movie, yet, but they are.

It is a sort of thinking-man's (or thinking Pineapple Girl's) humor. The word "insane" also springs to mind.

I highly recommend it. I give it four and a half pineapples.

Posted by: Big Dan at July 15, 2004 07:56 AM

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