Friday, April 12, 2013

Bad Books, Vicious Libs, and Baseball Dopes Like Pedro Strop

I seem to be in the middle (I hope it's at least the middle) of a frustrating period during which I can't find a book that doesn't leave me feeling as if I'm wasting precious reading-time on it.  The last few books I've started are either so poorly written (dominated by convoluted sentences, or even worse, by poor grammar and sentence fragments) or they are so utterly boring that I toss them aside from frustration after 50 or 60 pages.  

The sad thing is that the poorly written ones I've encountered during this streak have the best plots or topics, and the better written ones are the boring ones.  At this point, I'd settle for mediocrity in both writing and plot as a good compromise to jumpstart my reading.  I'm not sure which is worse: overhyped books from major publishers or all the self-published books out there that should have been kept at home.  I don't mean to sound cynical (or worse, unfeeling), but the book-haystack is getting larger and larger, making it more difficult than ever to find the good stuff.  And that is frustrating.

Maybe, it's me.  Do you ever get to the point where everything seems to be annoying and frustrating?  Maybe it started when I noticed the viciously gleeful reaction so many on the left are having to the death of Britain's Margaret Thatcher.  That disgusting display of intolerance was enough to put me in a bad mood, and might be the reason my reading enjoyment went south about the same time.  I read many authors whose political opinions I don't necessarily agree with, and some of them have jumped on the trash-Thatcher bandwagon, so maybe that's it.

The final straw was last night when I turned to a longtime favorite pastime, televised baseball, for some relief.  Didn't happen, thanks to some dope named Pedro Strop who pitches for the Baltimore Orioles.  This clown wears his baseball cap cocked so far to the side that it almost touches his right ear.  I wish I had a photo I could post, but just picture a very crooked baseball cap on this fool's head - something you might see on some thuggish yo-yo hanging out at the local mall trying to look cool - and you will get the idea.  Come on, Mr. Baseball Commissioner, are you going to put up with this kind of thing?  Do you really want Major League Baseball to become the NBA?  If players don't respect themselves or their fans, can't you at least demand that they respect the sport?  That's sort of your job.

I always figured that the older I got, the more patience I would have, especially after I retired.  It's sure not working out that way.


  1. oh, yes, yes, yeas, YES!! Thank you for saying some things that (badly) needed to be said.

    And, yes, I go through periods (especially in the last couple of years as I get older and realize that the number of books I'll be able to read before I die is becoming limited) when I wonder if I'm not going "off" reading altogether. I've come to the conclusion that it's rather the other way around - I'm just becoming more demanding of quality. I suspect the same is true in your case. Hang in there.

  2. Oh you are not alone in this. I've had to toss all but a select few self-pubbed books (horrible, horrible) and I'm a little tired of publisher hawking "the most anticipated novel of the year." I'll stick to blogger recommendations, thankyouverymuch. Good luck reclaiming your reading mojo.

  3. Too bad there's no Carleton Fisk playing anymore. He'd settle Mr. Strop's hash.

  4. I suspect that you are right, Debbie. It seems that poor sentence construction and plain old bad grammar bug me like never before. I wonder where all the editors went.

    But, good news for me...I'm loving "Blood Drama" by Christopher Meeks, Chris's first piece of genre fiction. It's sort of a romantic comedy/bloody crime novel, if you can imagine such a thing.

  5. Thanks, Michelle. As I was saying to Debbie, "Blood Drama" has almost certainly pulled me from my reading funk. I'm really enjoying that one, and hate to finish it tomorrow.

  6. Susan...exactly right. If players like Fisk were still out there patrolling baseball's self-respect, little punks like Pedro Strop would have their butts handed to them.