Watch “The Rise of Skywalker Review | Disney Star Wars’ Failure is Complete” on YouTube

My wife and I saw this “movie” yesterday. As a stand alone, it was ok. Very fun to watch and be a part of. But as a finale of the Skywalker storyline… I hated it. It was a big FU to the original trilogy I grew up on and to the fans who hold that trilogy as the embodiment of the story. Political Agenda and Money grubbing corporate greed with no imagination past using other people’s ideas and success to further their own goals.

Hated it. Save your Time and Money. Pass on this one.

-mike

Finished Reading: Christmas Books Round up

Well, doesn’t that beat all?

I’ve just finished reading the last Christmas book I’ll be able to finish this December, An Irish Country Christmas by Patrick Taylor. That makes 5 books that I was able to read in the month of the Holiday Season. My goal was to read only Christmas books this month and I succeeded:

  • The Christmas Wedding by James Patterson
  • Skipping Christmas by John Grisham
  • The Autobiography of Santa Claus
  • and How Mrs Claus saved Christmas, both by Jeff Guinn
  • And finally the wonderful and heart-warming An Irish Country Christmas by one of my favorite novelists Patrick Taylor.

I hope all you have enjoyed the Season as much as I have. There’s not much left of it besides after Christmas sales and finishing off the eggnog in the fridge. That is, if you can free yourself from the sugar and tryptophan induced coma.

Best holiday wishes to you and yours from us and ours. I’m looking forward to more reading and posting in 2020. Thanks for following along with The Bookish Recovering Know It All.

-mike

A-Santa-ist: Yup, That’s Me.

When do you first suspect or start to doubt Santa’s existence?

Should we still believe until Santa’s nonexistence can be conclusively proven?

Or should we disbelieve until such evidence for his existence in reality be demonstrated?

How in Santa’s North Pole would you even go about “conclusively proving” the nonexistence of something or someone anyway?

Would you be safe and sane living your life, making real life affecting decisions, and treating others accordingly… Voting in Public elections… as if Santa actually exists?

Would you feel justified mocking and deriding others who don’t believe and treating them harshly because of it?

Or rather… do you eventually grow up and safely assume Santa to be a useful and happy family myth, with no real world application past treating others with kindness and trying to live as Santa might want you to… if he were really real?

Do you still believe in the actual existence of Santa Claus even though you haven’t any real evidence or demonstration of his existence in the real world?

Or do you expect others to “prove” Santa doesn’t exist before you’ll “not believe” anymore?

I’m an A-Santa-ist. How about you?

-mike

Merry Christmas: My Favorite Poem and Poet

Christmas Trees

(A Christmas Circular Letter)

The city had withdrawn into itself

And left at last the country to the country;

When between whirls of snow not come to lie

And whirls of foliage not yet laid, there drove
A stranger to our yard, who looked the city,

Yet did in country fashion in that there

He sat and waited till he drew us out

A-buttoning coats to ask him who he was.

He proved to be the city come again

To look for something it had left behind

And could not do without and keep its Christmas.

He asked if I would sell my Christmas trees;

My woods—the young fir balsams like a place

Where houses all are churches and have spires.

I hadn’t thought of them as Christmas Trees.

I doubt if I was tempted for a moment

To sell them off their feet to go in cars

And leave the slope behind the house all bare,
Where the sun shines now no warmer than the moon.

I’d hate to have them know it if I was.

Yet more I’d hate to hold my trees except

As others hold theirs or refuse for them,

Beyond the time of profitable growth,

The trial by market everything must come to.

I dallied so much with the thought of selling.

Then whether from mistaken courtesy

And fear of seeming short of speech, or whether

From hope of hearing good of what was mine, I said,

“There aren’t enough to be worth while.”

“I could soon tell how many they would cut,

You let me look them over.”
“You could look.

But don’t expect I’m going to let you have them.”
Pasture they spring in, some in clumps too close

That lop each other of boughs, but not a few
Quite solitary and having equal boughs

All round and round. The latter he nodded “Yes” to,

Or paused to say beneath some lovelier one,
With a buyer’s moderation, “That would do.”

I thought so too, but wasn’t there to say so.

We climbed the pasture on the south, crossed over,
And came down on the north. He said, “A thousand.”
“A thousand Christmas trees!—at what apiece?”
He felt some need of softening that to me:

“A thousand trees would come to thirty dollars.”
Then I was certain I had never meant

To let him have them. Never show surprise!
But thirty dollars seemed so small beside

The extent of pasture I should strip, three cents
(For that was all they figured out apiece),

Three cents so small beside the dollar friends
I should be writing to within the hour

Would pay in cities for good trees like those,
Regular vestry-trees whole Sunday Schools

Could hang enough on to pick off enough.
A thousand Christmas trees I didn’t know I had!

Worth three cents more to give away than sell,
As may be shown by a simple calculation.

Too bad I couldn’t lay one in a letter.
I can’t help wishing I could send you one,

In wishing you herewith a Merry Christmas.

****

And also from me, the Bookish Recovering Know It All, Merry Christmas and happiest of Holliday Seasons.

-mike

Currently Reading: An Irish Country Christmas

Saved by the Girls of Christmas

I just finished How Mrs Claus Saved Christmas by Jeff Guinn today. I know. That was quick, but it really was an enjoyable story set in 1600s England during the English Civil War when parliament overthrew King Charles and gave power to the Puritans who eventually outlawed celebrations of Christmas. The story follows Layla, Mrs Claus, as she escapes London and becomes one of the leaders of planned peaceful protest at Canterbury. You’ll have to read the book yourself to find out what happened. It’s a very fitting sequel to Guinn’s first Christmas tale The Autobiography of Santa Claus. I think I actually enjoyed this one more though. I’ll be looking forward to re-reading these two books next holiday season as well.

Now on to Ireland

But until then, next up on this Christmas reading list is An Irish Country Christmas by Patrick Taylor. I’ve read this before but just started again this afternoon. It’s the third in the Irish Country Village series of, at least as of this year, fifteen books. I have them all, and all but two now in hardback which I love. I’ve not read them all yet, only five… or is it six?

A great Holiday Escape

But I’m looking forward to spending the next week reentering the world of Ballybuckelbo, the quaint and small fictional village between Kinnegar and Bangor that these books are set it. I wonder if anyone else out there has read them? If you haven’t, you really should give it a good go. You can start in any of the books and be just fine. Although they are chronologically placed within the series, they do great as stand alone stories as well. Why not pick one up today? You’ll be glad you did.

What are you reading? Will you be reading only Christmas books this month? Why not have a go and share.

-mike

Currently Reading: How Mrs Claus Saved Christmas

The Original Wonder Woman

Having just finished The Autobiography of Santa Clause by Jeff Guinn that I read last year, a fantasy trip through history and historical persons that “helped” him along the way on his mission of giving, I now start his follow up book that I picked up at the local library sale this last year, How Mrs Claus Saved Christmas. I’m really looking forward to digging into this one. I’m planning on making it a yearly read just like The Autobiography of Santa.

I’ve got a good problem to report as well. I’ve just picked up a hardcover copy of An Irish Country Christmas by Patrick Taylor at the local Half Price Books store. I already have it in softback, but I’m trying to get all the books in the series in hardcover. I have them all now, but with this edition, or should I say addition, I now have only two that are still soft. I just love the series, the writing and the escape to 1960s small village Ireland.

My problem? I’m starting to have more Christmas books on my shelf than I can “yearly read” every December. I may have to start in November next year. 🙂 After Mrs Claus, the plan is to finish this month and season out by re-reading An Irish Country Christmas.

What are you reading? Will you be reading only Christmas books this month? Why not have a go and share.

-mike

Currently Reading: “Santa!!!!”

The Autobiography and Mrs Claus

Having just finished The Christmas Wedding by James Patterson, I move to the third and fourth books on my seasonal reading list. The Autobiography of Santa Clause by Jeff Guinn that I read last year, a fantasy trip through history and historical persons that “helped” him along the way on his mission of giving, and the follow up book that I picked up at the local library sale this last year How Mrs Claus Saved Christmas. I’m really looking forward to digging into that one but first I’ll re-read the first.

By the way… Gaby picked the brother in law Marty at the end of The Christmas Wedding. Great book. It’s a bit predictable and soft on the story, but we’ll worth the read for the family and seasonal reflection. This is the second year I’ve read it and plan to make it a yearly.

What are you reading? Will you be reading only non-fiction this month? Why not have a go and share.

-mike