Saturday, January 28, 2012

'Praetorian' by Simon Scarrow

As a booklover first and a book seller second, one of the things that grates me more than anything is the person who comes up to me in the bookstore with a new hardcover and asks, “does this come in paper”?  If there ever was a case for modern day flogging, that would be it.  If you want a book, then you’ll GET the book!  I only say that to say this:  It took some juggling and a lot patience to get this book.  And while it wasn’t super expensive it wouldn’t have mattered anyway, because there was nothing that was going to stop me from getting this book.  Nothing.  Now that I’ve completely bored you with information that you could truly give a flying fig about, let me get to the book…

Only in Rome could politics be as dangerous and bloody as the battlefield.  Macro & Cato return to continue their forced servitude, care of the infamous snake, Narcissus.  These two have survived using their wits, their courage, their gall, their brutality, and their luck.  This time they’ll need all of that to work in concert in order to make it through the next Narcissu’s “Mission Impossible: Rome” adventure.  Basically there is a plot to murder the Emperor, Claudius, and our two soldiers are asked (yeah, right) to help uncover the conspiracy.  Of course the mission is never as straight forward as that, so while trying to figure out THAT simple mission they must also find out who is hoarding all the grain and starving Rome.  Yep.  How’s that for a to-do list? 

They must stop being soldiers for a while and become spies.  This involves interesting things happening to their rank and names.  Simon himself says that this isn’t the usual battlefield blood and gore that we’ve come to love but the adventure is still there.  I did miss reading about the legions cutting through bone and gristle to slaughter the enemy, but this book is in NO WAY a dud or boring.  I found myself feeling that paradox of loving this book and hating myself for flying through it because I’ll only have to patiently wait like Job for the next one. 

There are also a number of funny passages in this book when listening to Emperor Claudius and you will crack up at some of the things that Macro says to Narcissu’s face… and back.  Both of these legionaries have grown throughout this series and after eleven books, they are as family.  I don’t reread a lot of books, and I can name the ones that I have reread on one hand.  If I’m blessed to live a nice long life this will be a series that I will look forward to rereading in my golden years.  If I don’t live a long time, at least I’ve read them now.  Melodramatic?  Yeah… well who asked you?  Well done Mr. Scarrow… well done.


Thursday, January 26, 2012

Arizona Governor vs. President Obama

My quick two cents on Point-A-FingerGate…

(First a short story) A few weeks ago I got in trouble at work because I hung up on a customer.  This lady was white and was being extremely rude and talking down to me.  Sorry, but I don’t play that customer is always right bullshit!  If you can be rude to me then I damn sure can be rude to you… and you WILL NOT talk down to me.  You are NOT better than me and just because you “have money” does not give you the right to be a dick.  So I hung up on that bitch.  I’m a Black man that grew up in the south and I have a VERY hard time letting anyone talk down to me, much less someone who is white.  Now this lady probably didn’t know I was a Black man (actually she did because I’ve dealt with her elitist ass before and couldn’t stand her then either) but when someone talks down to me I feel like I’m a tiger being backed into a corner.  Although Obama is President I’d imagine he felt like this when that idiot put her finger in his face.

He didn’t act on it because he is better at holding his feelings and reactions in better than I am.  That is good and bad.  Good because a leader needs to be above reproach (although not one politician is, including our current Commander-in-Chief).  And bad, because if you hold in your feelings in too long something is going to blow the fuck up. 

I think what the Arizona governor did was utterly disrespectful.  You don’t point at anyone who isn’t your child and you damn sure don’t point your finger at the freaking PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES!

What I have an issues with is how people are so quick to rush in to protect the president because something like this has never been done before. 

Ummm… no.  Sorry.

And just so that we’re on the same page and to appease the idiots who will only read part of this… No, I am not defending the Arizona governor!  I’m just appalled that with all of the rude and disgraceful things that have been done to our Presidents over the years, this is the one that people go sackcloths and ashes on.  And it’s only because of one reason.  Because it’s a Democratic President, and because that President is Obama. 

No?  OK, remember when that sand monkey threw his shoes at President Bush a few years back?  I do.  I honestly don’t remember people being so outraged!  Oh, the conservatives were no doubt!  But the rest of the idiot world was like “Yeah, that’s what that stupid cowboy gets”.  From what I read, throwing your shoes or showing the bottom of your shoes to someone in that part of the country is a HUGE insult and only reserved for your enemies.  Interesting.  How come America wasn’t pissed about that?  Because it was a Republican,  A dumb, drunk Texan by many wrong accounts.  If you’re so concerned about the President being insulted then why not be pissed when ANY President is insulted.

I know, I know, I know… double standards rule this world and nowhere is that more evident than in politics.  We turn a blind eye to the in-your-face theft by someone on our side the isle, but jump on any rumor of theft from anyone on the other side of the isle.  I get that.  But please spare me your fake “How could anyone do this to our President” rage when, quite honestly, this isn’t (by a long shot) the first time this has happened. 

I was in the minority when I said that the sand monkey should have been double tapped in the head for throwing his cheap ass Pennyloaders.  Seriously… you have time to reach down, take off your shoe, get up, throw it, reach down AGAIN, and thrown your OTHER shoe and the Secret Service doesn’t do anything!?!  What tha fuck!?!?!?  I know we have brave men and women serving in the Secret Service and the fact that they didn’t react meant that they were probably saddles with the BULLSHIT weight of political correctness.  Their job is to protect the president and if the President is visiting a hostile country and you see someone bend down… dude… even I could make that call! 

That nutcase Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is always coming out his mouth wrong against our county and President.  But you have to turn into a foreign news channel just to hear about it!  Hell, I had to surf for about… ummm…. Forty five seconds before I found something on a U.S. site.  It only took me about… ummm… fifteen seconds on the BBC website.  My point is simple, if you are outraged (and would be right to be) by the disrespect of the Arizona governor to our President, then you need to be outraged by EVERY time someone of “note” disrespects our President. 

Also… I know it’s been said in jest, but things wouldn’t have been different if Michelle Obama would have been there.  She’s too classy to stoop to that level.  At least in public.  J  I’m sure she went OFF to her husband in private and I wouldn’t put it past her to pick up the phone and call Governor Finger.  But I truly don’t expect anything to be done.  Now… had that been one of us… you would have been reading about my obituary… yesterday.

In closing…

My friends and people who have known me for a while know that I admire Obama the MAN, but despise Obama the politician.  A friend of mine in D.C. sends me eMail’s from time to time with the most gorgeous picture of the First Family.  I’m not even sure how he gets them but they are the Hi-Res pictures that I see from time to time in Time or other throw away magazines like that.  I adore how his wife looks at him, I adore the smiles on his daughters’ faces when they are shown with him, I love how he has more than a few photos of him in book stores, and love how a man that looks like ME is in the highest office on the fucking planet.  His politics I can do without.

So when I saw that picture of Governor Finger pointing in his face I was like “aw heeeeelllll no”!  But when I started to read some of the comments I was like “Aw heeeeelllll no”!  If anyone disses the President they dis us all.  Last I checked the terrorists and the like weren’t marking their bombs with “African-American” only plates or “White American” only plates.  They want to see us ALL fucking die.  So be outraged that the OFFICE of the President was dissed, not only the man temporally serving in it.

That is all.  Goodnight.  

Friday, January 20, 2012

'The Hunger Games' by Suzanne Collins

The end of 2011 and the beginning of 2012 found me reading the Steve Jobs bio by Walter Isaacson.  Why does this matter?  Because, I normally don’t do non-fiction… just like I normally don’t do young adult.  However, after my favorite author, one of my favorite publishers, and numerous other people told me that I needed to read it, I figured why not?  So I once again stepped out of my comfort zone and waded into waters not seen since Jr. High.  And I’m glad I did.

I cracked open this book (OK fine… I swiped open my iPad) and did not stop until the end.  This book quickly grabs you and doesn’t let go until about the last fourth.  I’ll get to that later.  The first three fourths of this book I flew through it like Katniss at a buffet.  This being a YA book I didn’t expect the amount of violence to be what it was.  It wasn’t gratuitous or anything but it was definitely was there.  If you don’t know the premise of this book that could only mean one thing; you were born yesterday.  Think ‘Lord of the Flies’ meets ‘The Running Man’ meets any high school in America.

It’s a murderous game of cat and mouse and you only have to survive.  That’s it.  Oh yeah, you must compete against twenty-three other kids, on TV, with the odds stacked against you, on little to no water and food.  Piece of cake, right?   The first ¾ of this book is a fast paced, fun, bloody adventure.  The unfortunate thing for this book is that when the numbers of kids start to dwindle, so does the action.  It turns into an introspective of Katniss and it doesn’t have the same magic as the beginning.  Now, I did finish it because it WAS good but I hated that it went that direction.  I think that reader of YA books will still (obviously with the numbers this series is putting up) enjoy this series, but from a reader who needs a book finish as strong as it starts, I wasn’t completely taken. 

I was debating on whether or not I would read this series straight through so I left it to chance.  If I liked the way this book ended I would continue.  If I didn’t, I would still read it, but not straight through.  Seeing as I’ve already started ‘Legion’ by Simon Scarrow, I have my answer.  Again, I didn’t dislike this book but I was hoping for something…  else. 


Thursday, January 19, 2012

Monster Cable Earth Wind and Fire Gratitude Headphones

When I ordered these headphones from the ‘Vine’ program I was reading the Steve Jobs bio.  Among his many talents (or headaches depending on who you ask) was his ridiculous attention to detail… even the smallest detail of his products.  He wanted people to emotionally connect to the products when they open the box.  I only bring this up because I had that same feeling when I opened this product.  I won’t spend a lot of time on that because it has nothing to do with the sound, but I did get a good “feeling” when I saw the brown felt box that had the delicious smell of “new”.  Sounds corny?  Yeah probably. 

The headphones are a brown color and much thicker than your average set.  Thicker meaning the wires have a slight feel of heft to them that makes them very hard to tangle and won’t easily get caught up in your clothes or anything else.  The part that plugs into your device has an “L” shape which isn’t bad, but it would be nice if it was straight. 

I used these headphones on my HP laptop, iPhone 4s, and iPad2.  I listened to everything from movies on Netflix, to music, to ‘Cartalk’, and music from every genre.  These headphones are EXTREMELY impressive!  And I mean EXTREMELY!  You can also use these headphones to talk on the phone.  Matter of fact as I was in-line skating yesterday I was told that the sound on my end was very clear.  He only asked because he was wondering where I was.  The sound produced by these headphones is extremely crisp and clear. 

There is one thing you need to be aware of though.  They say that these are noise canceling headphones and they are NOT kidding.  These things are so good you could use them as ear plugs.  Seriously.  I would not use these to talk on your phone as you’re driving.  They work too well for that and it could be a bit dangerous.  While driving you need to be aware of the other sounds and cars around you.  These headphones will create a sound bubble that makes it near impossible to hear anything else.  GREAT for when you’re walking around town tuning out barking dogs, leaf blowers, and horns.  BAD if you’re driving.  But don’t let that stop you from getting these headphones. 

These headphones are packaged in a beautiful box with a small magnetic end to keep it closed.  They also come with two different cased to carry them and one even has a closed belt slip.  They also provide eleven, yes ELEVEN sets of ear buds to custom fit your ears.  I had to go through about four of them before I found my perfect match but I have and I couldn’t be happier.  Of course I’m happiest when listening to Toni Braxton sing to me through these headphones… but that’s just me.  

Big Tit Glory Hole & DVD Combo

This is my second masturbation sleeve from 'EdenFantasys', and I got this one because I wanted to compare it to the first one.  Well that and I wanted to have a little fun.  Unfortunately this one did not impress me and it wouldn’t have impressed me even if this were my first sex toy.  First I’ll tell you about the good things:
This male sex toy is made of a wonderful material that feels magnificent.  You know those toy worms back in the 80’s that tried to slip out of your hand when you tried to hold it?  That’s what this one felt like and I was extremely eager to feel it around me. Unfortunately that’s where the good stops.  I tried baby oil and that didn’t work because it made it too slippery to grip and it wasn’t good to use as a lubricant.  So I grabbed the lotion and that worked MUCH better.  This sleeve has two holes to simulate a pussy and an ass.  This sleeve is open ended as well.  The different sized holes are good for the initial penetration but once you’re through into the sleeve it’s the same size.

This is where I was very unimpressed.  I need a sleeve to be tight and this one wasn’t at all.  You can squeeze it to make it tighter but that didn’t feel good to me.  I tried both ends to see if that would help, but it didn’t.  It has bumps and ridges on the inside but not enough to make any difference.  I was expecting to feel something obvious but the only time I really felt it was when I cleaned it and had to put my fingers in it to clean it.  This adult toy has so much potential but they need to work on it a bit.  It is reusable but the only time I think I’ll use it again is if I want to feel something different.

The free DVD is decent.  It’s nice to have so you don’t have to search the internet for something.  I’ve listed them below to give you an idea what’s in each scene. 

Video #1: Regular sex
Video #2: Pretty good Sloppy BJ
Video#3: Regular sex with a woman with the perfect ass for reverse cowgirl.
Video #4: Regular BJ
Video #5: Stunning blonde with a HUGE perky pair of tits. Regular sex with an emphasis on anal.  She has the perfect ass for it to.
Video #6: Regular sex
Video #7: Regular sex
Video #8: Regular sex
Video #9: Regular sex including anal
Video #10: Hand job from a woman who moans way too much.

This sex toy was given to me by 'EdenFantasys' to give a true and honest review and I was not paid by them to write it.