Nationalism had been, before the war, a claim pressed by minorities against large multiethnic empires, but after Versailles it became a claim that minority groups asserted against one another.

– Yehuda Mirsky

Books of 2022: Night Passage

All meat and no pulp make a banal reader, and caviar always tastes better when you’ve reset your palette with a tuna salad sandwich every now and again. I keep a secret stash of self-indulgent and politically-incorrect reads by the likes of W.E.B. Griffin, Craig Johnson, and Robert Parker. These writers and many others like them remind us that sometimes a trashy novel is better than an arty film.

Think me lowbrow? Believe yourself the better person because because you would never be caught dead with a formula procedural or bodice-ripper? To you, then, say I: faithless is the holy man who ignores the divine within the profane, and benighted are the literati who are blind to the virtues of the meanest scribe.

Now excuse me while I, literary taste-buds thoroughly cleansed, dive into James Joyce’s Dublliners.

Achievement unlocked: Lose 130 lbs.

July 2016 starting weight: 355 lbs (161.4kg)

Goal weight: 220 lbs (100kg)

July 2019 weight: 219 lbs (99.6 kg)


Total weight lost: 136 lbs (61.8 kg)

Thank G-d for small miracles and for helping me keep all of that extra poundage off for the past 3.5 years. For the record, appetite control and physical activity are a lot easier on the system than a banded stomach or a foreshortened intestine.

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