Lost in Translation

The other day I decided to have some fun by running book titles through the Bad Translator engine.

One of the first I did was Neil Gaiman’s Fragile Things: Short Stories and Wonders, which changed to

You Can Write A Secret Medical History of Miracles

I found it funny, tweeted it, and went about my day. Imagine my surprise several hours later when I went back to Twitter and found close to an hundred notifications. How did this happen? How did this little tweet gain such traction?

The answer was not found on Twitter; instead, it was in my inbox:

Neil Gaiman Retweeted MeThat’s right; Neil Gaiman – the author himself – retweeted me! This means that I have now been retweeted by both Neil Gaiman and Amanda Palmer. To me, that’s epic.


Other titles I ran through the translator and their new titles are:

Trigger Warning: Short Fictions and Disturbances (Neil Gaiman)

An Experience to Report to the Police

The Art of Asking; or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Let People Help (Amanda Palmer)

This Basis may not be According to Plan, but there is a Way, as You Know, of Fear.

The Silkworm (J.K. Rowling aka Robert Galbraith)

Insects, Of Course

The Cuckoo’s Calling (J.K. Rowling aka Robert Galbraith)

People say Crazy Things

From the Earth to the Moon (Jules Verne)

A Few Months Ago

A Pocket Full of Rye (Agatha Christie)

Large Sports Bag

Gone Girl (Gillian Flynn)

Come On, Guys!


What about you? What titles can you mangle?



 

Don’t forget to follow me on:

Facebook – where I share news stories, articles from other blogs, and various and sundry miscellany that happens to catch my eye. It’s stuff you won’t see here! Well, mostly.

Instagram – where I show you my Life in Motion and share quotes and such. The widget only shows my last three photographs – don’t you want to see them all?

Twitter – where you can see my thoughts in 140 characters or less. Also, funny retweets.

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Teaser Tuesday: The Violinist’s Thumb

The past few days have been . . . not normal. I’ll post about that a bit later on.

Nonetheless, the wheel of time has once again turned to

Teaser Tuesday

Just in case you don’t know, Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by A Daily Rhythm. Anyone can play along! All you have to do is grab the book you’re currently reading, open to a random page and share two sentences from that page. But make sure you don’t share any spoilers!*

*I wish I could take credit for this introduction, but I shamelessly stole it from Heather over at bitsnbooks. To help me make amends, you should go check out her blog.


This week I’m reading The Violinist’s Thumb by Sam Kean (the same Kean who wrote The Disappearing Spoon).

They gnawed the cartilage off bones and 
sucked the marrow out, and cooked up all 
the fleshy victuals - the heart, kidneys, 
brain, and, most succulent of all, the
liver.  And with that meal, in a
godforsaken cabin at eighty degrees north
latitude, European explorers first learned
a hard lesson about genetics - a lesson
other stubborn Arctic explorers would 
have to keep learning over and over, a
lesson scientists would not understand 
fully for centuries.

Violinist's Thumb Cover

In Retrospect

I gave Neil Gaiman’s Trigger Warning 5/5 stars. My favorite story was “The Man Who Forgot Ray Bradbury.”


 

Don’t forget to follow me on:

Facebook – where I share news stories, articles from other blogs, and various and sundry miscellany that happens to catch my eye. It’s stuff you won’t see here! Well, mostly.

Instagram – where I show you my Life in Motion and share quotes and such. The widget only shows my last three photographs – don’t you want to see them all?

Twitter – where you can see my thoughts in 140 characters or less. Also, funny retweets.

Sunday Snapshots

Enjoy a sampling of the photographs I took this week:

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Joey Zasa: Michael Corleone’s Sad Puppy (A Morality Tale)

Come, Sad Puppies, and sit around the fire.

Perhaps this is the very fire by which Mary Shelley created Frankenstein. Or not. It’s just a fire, and I don’t write Science Fiction/Fantasy. Deal with it.

Nevertheless, there is a tale you should hear:

The Tale of Joey Zasa

It’s New York City in the 1970s, and Joey Zasa has taken control of the Corleone crime syndicate. In another age, Zasa may have been the most powerful crime boss to ever rule a family; however, he comes to power at a time when crime families desire more legitimacy and overall public opinion is turning against the gangster lifestyle.

A smart businessman, Zasa nonetheless earns Michael Corleone’s displeasure by dealing narcotics and living a flamboyant, high-profile lifestyle – both of which draw unwanted attention to the family’s criminal activities. Furthermore, Michael forces Joey to make peace with Vincent Mancini (Michael’s nephew), who claims Zasa has been publicly insulting Michael and views Zasa as a legitimate threat to Michael. These perceived slights gnaw at Joey Zasa, and – after an unsuccessful attempt to eliminate Vincent – he plots Michael’s downfall.

Aligning himself with Michael’s enemies, Zasa engineers an admittedly brilliant mass murder of various Dons of the Commission in Atlantic City, New Jersey; unfortunately for Zasa, Michael Corleone – his chief target – escapes.

Fast forward in time: New York’s Little Italy is celebrating a religious festival dedicated to the Virgin Mary, and Zasa has put up a Cadillac as a raffle prize. A Corleone accomplice scratches the Cadillac, infuriating Zasa. His henchmen go after the vandal, only to be gunned down by disguised hitmen. Zasa himself flees on foot, but his escape is hindered by a locked door. He is shot three times in the back by Vincent Mancini, who had disguised himself as a mounted police officer.


Now, Sad Puppies, do you see? Do you see the lesson you should learn?

You are Joey Zasa. Considering yourselves slighted, you engineered the downfall of those who opposed you. It remains to be seen what – if any – ultimate victories you may secure. What is certain is the stunt is unlikely to be repeated. I’m not saying someone is going to gun you down; in fact, they shouldn’t. That would be murder most foul and an atrocity beyond the pale. What I am saying is that you won’t get away with it again. Enjoy your brief time in the sun, Sad Puppies; enjoy it while it lasts . . .

. . . and remember Joey Zasa.



Full Disclaimer

I have no dog in the Hugos fight.

Until a few weeks ago, I didn’t even know what the Hugos were; I would have asked if they were something akin to these two:

I’m not even sure I like that many SF/F authors. I can probably count them on one hand:

Jules Verne
Ray Bradbury
Michael Crichton
Terry Pratchett
Neil Gaiman

I also like Doctor Who, and I follow John Scalzi’s blog – for whom the Sad Puppies harbor a special venomous hatred – but I’ve never read any of his books and don’t rightly recall why I started following him. I like his blog, though; I’ll have to check out his books someday.

Why do you hate him so, Sad Puppies? Why?

I owe credit to one Scott Richardson, whose reply on Karey English’s post inspired me.

I feel like Michael Corleone at this point (“Each time I get out, they pull me back in again!”). I ducked out of fandom a long time ago because of this kind of thing. I got pulled back because there were anomalies in the Hugo ballot and my brain gets attracted to those like a pig to truffles.

A special thanks is due the Godfather wiki, whose biography of Joey Zasa was quite useful in my summation.

Don’t forget to follow me on:

Facebook – where I share news stories, articles from other blogs, and various and sundry miscellany that happens to catch my eye. It’s stuff you won’t see here! Well, mostly.

Instagram – where I show you my Life in Motion and share quotes and such. The widget only shows my last three photographs – don’t you want to see them all?

Twitter – where you can see my thoughts – and humorous retweets – in 140 characters or less.

Two Thoughts on Earth Day

I was going to write about my thoughts on Global Warming and environmentalists; however, I discovered the work has already been done for me.

First, let me state I believe in climate change.

However

I also believe that change could be part of Earth’s natural process and, therefore, that it is impossible to quantify man’s specific impact on any perceived climate change.

This article explains my position in much better – and much more scientific – terms than I could.

As for environmentalists, while many of them are most likely wonderful people with the best of intentions, the majority of them come across in a manner similar to this:

Pearls Before Swine Conference of the Self Righteous by Stephan Pastis

Teaser Tuesday: Trigger Warning

Today I’m off to the aquarium and maritime museum; look for photographs in the next Sunday Snapshots (a feature I just made up as I’m typing this – we’ll see how it goes).

Be that as it may, once again the wheel of time has turned to

Teaser Tuesday

Just in case you don’t know, Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by A Daily Rhythm. Anyone can play along! All you have to do is grab the book you’re currently reading, open to a random page and share two sentences from that page. But make sure you don’t share any spoilers!*

*I wish I could take credit for this introduction, but I shamelessly stole it from Heather over at bitsnbooks. To help me make amends, you should go check out her blog.


This week I’m reading Trigger Warning by Neil Gaiman. I haven’t technically started it yet, but it’s next on my TBR pile, so I’ll just open a page at random . . .

OK, this is from “November Tale” on page 109:

The brazier was small and square and made
of an aged and fire-blackened metal that
might have been copper or brass.  It had
caught Eloise's eye at the garage sale
because it was twined with animals that
might have been dragons and might have 
been sea-snakes.  One of them was missing
its head.

I don’t know about you, but that’s tantalizing, right there! Makes me want to read it right now! Unfortunately, other items require my attention. Things like grading papers and preparing for end-of-term exams and sending out summer school remedial class notices (hopefully not).

And today, a field trip! Huzzah!


Trigger Warning Cover

In Retrospect

I haven’t yet finished The Disappearing Spoon by Sam Kean, but of the 49% I have read, it’s absolutely wonderful; I plan on condensing and incorporating some of his anecdotes in next years’ classes.


 

Don’t forget to follow me on:

Facebook – where I share news stories, articles from other blogs, and various and sundry miscellany that happens to catch my eye. It’s stuff you won’t see here! Well, mostly.

Instagram – where I show you my Life in Motion and share quotes and such. The widget only shows my last three photographs – don’t you want to see them all?

Twitter – where you can see my thoughts in 140 characters or less. Also, funny retweets.

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