Category Archives: Literature

A Literary Limerick – The Hobbit

Today’s Music: The Dangerous Summer – The Permanent Rain

Today, we return to the playful corruption of great literature, in a piece requested by the much loved (she paid me to say that. Even though it’s true.) Ginger Snaap.
The main story will follow at some point (I should probably reread…nahhhh), but this is the first piece to begin the epic.
(No, The Silmarillion doesn’t count. Because I’ve never read it.)

So pull up a mug of that fine hobbit wine, sharpen the tips of your elven ears, and threaten your neighbors into silence with your Dwarvish axe.

As we limeri-cize…The Hobbit….
The Hobbit
To him, being hungry was the worst.
He stole Precious and made Gollum’s heart burst.
The Dwarves sought to bag him
To help beat the Dragon.
That’s how Bilbo spent his eleventy-first.

You’re welcome.
(You can see all the limericks by clicking Limerick above the banner.)

And as a palate cleanser, please, enjoy this.

A Literary Limerick (and Haiku!) – Star Wars: A New Hope

Today’s Music: Meco – Star Wars Theme/Cantina
Note on today’s music: If you’ve never heard this disco version, you should click the link.

Continuing in the tradition of disrespect for the classics, El Guapo is proud to present his latest invitation to be sued by the copyright holders of great works.
Today, we turn our literary Tourette’s on the Star Wars saga.
(There was a novelization of the movie I owned as boy. So there.)

This one is actually based on a request. Love & Lunchmeat asked if Star Wars could be done. Possibly in Haiku.
As we are ecstatic that anyone pays any attention to these at all, we are happy to oblige.

A note on Haiku: it is a venerated Japanese art form. The traditional structure is 17 “on“. On are not the same as syllables. I have no idea what they are, so I don’t feel bad about the meter here at all.

One other note on this series: This will be episodes 4, 5 and 6. Not 1, 2 or 3.
Star Wars. Not Star Wars: The Quest To Cash In.

A battle of good versus evil.

A son inherits more than a lightsaber.

Dude, don’t kiss you sister.

Star Wars
A New Hope
He grew up fast, in confusion and blur.
“For luck” she said as he kissed her.
In the trench he shot true
No more Death Star for you!

But dude, you just kissed your sister!!!

And just to cleanse your palate, here’s Bill Murray’s lyrics from an old old Saturday Night Live skit.

A Literary Limerick – Deathly Hallows, Part One

Today’s Music: Blind Faith – Can’t Find My Way Home

Well, here we are, rapidly closing in on the finish. Almost all the adult authority figures that are going to die importantly already have. And so, the final journey begins.
After much walking and walking and running and walking, Sam and Frodo Harry and Hermione (and Ron) finally end up with a proper plan that they hope will work.

So let us begin the limericky bastardization of book seven of JK Rowlings magnificent Opus! (Not the penguin.)

Book Seven – Part One

Find the Horcruxii was what Harry must do.
Set off with friends to defeat You Know Who…
But just like the flick –
though it might make you sick –

this limerick will be split into two.

*Apologies to Elyse for following the movies (not the books) to get in that extra limerick, and Lisa, who might actually dislike limericks.

For those of you with calendars (or a low tolerance for pain), we will wrap this up on 31 July, Harry Potter’s Birthday.
So you may want to steer clear until after that…

A Literary Limerick – Order Of The Phoenix

Today’s Music: Dave Edmunds – Crawling FromThe Wreckage

It’s time for the latest installment in the “DEAR GOD WHY IS HE DOING THIS TO US????” limerick interpretation of Harry Potter.
At this point in our story, Harry is whiny, Ron is sullen, and Hermione is…well, Hermione.
Ah, but Cedric is dead and Voldemort is alive.
What can possibly happen next?!?

So join as we…rework…this beloved classic. Into Limerick form!
And if you want to see the rest (because you’re a masochist), just click Limerick above the banner.

The Order Of The Phoenix
Book Five

The fighting was close and intense
Splinters and dust clouds so dense
Sirius turned quite pale
As he went through the veil.

Wait a minute – Love is Harry’s defense?!?

No, these probably won’t get any better as they go on. But on the bright side, only three limericks left!

Let the hate mail begin!

A Literary Limerick – Gods of Asphalt

Today’s Music: Willie Nelson – On The Road Again

Those of you that have been around some of the blogs on my blogroll have already heard of H.E. Ellis first book, Gods of Asphalt, Book 1 (or availablehere)

There have been several reviews around the net, all of them good (as they should be). There have been many accolades from other bloggers to H.E. (as there should be).

However, in all my Googling, I have not found a single limerick tribute.
That’s just wrong folks. Or rather, the limerick I am about to present is just wrong.

Those of you who have read the book can see how this fits. Those of you who haven’t should go read the book, then come back and read the limerick (cause I want the site hits). (And the book is pretty damn good.)
Just so you know, H.E. knew nothing about the posting of the limerick. If she had
– It would have been much better
– I would be in traction from massive damage from her running me over in her Jeep. Even though I’m on the 16th floor here.

And so, with no further apologies (since I really can’t make enough of them for this travesty), the Gods of Asphalt limerick:

Playing ball was Sawyers dream in this world
Confronted his dad in a big ugly whirl.
At Gus’ place he learned
How the road twisted and turned.

Drove off with dad to serenade the girl

Really, I don;t know how you people read these limericks. I think I hit a new low. In the head. With a brick.

Anyway, go check out the book. It will do wonders towwards cleaning out the bad taste in your brain from this.
You’re welcome.

Book Review – Makers, by Cory Doctorow

Today’s Music: Simon and Garfunkel – Bookends (See what I did there?)

So I finally finished one of the books I’ve been reading.


Click for the Amazon page. No, I don't get a referral fee.

I enjoyed the hell out of this book.
A Quick Summary
The story takes place in a not-too-distant dystopian future.
The two main characters, Lester and Perry, are able to create fantastical whimsical technological creations out of thin air. They start the “New Work” movement that ends up touching 1 in 5 Americans. They are joined by Susan, the former reporter turned tech blogger, Tjan, the finance guy,and Kettlewell, the CEO type.
Together, they try to make the world into what they want it to be.

The story takes place in several parts.
First, we meet most of the main characters, and they create the New Work movement. Everyone is empowered to create and market their own inventions, using 3D printers to produce. The movement starts in a shantytown in Florida, and burgeons across the country and around the world.
Next, after New Work has faded, Perry and Lester create The Ride. It’s an homage to all the inventions of New Work, and riders vote for what they like or not. 3D printers and robotic worms remake the ride continuously to reflect the votes.
Several other incarnations of the ride spring up in other cities, and are networked together so that changes in one are reflected in the other.
The penultimate part brings our heroes into conflict with a futuristic version of Disney.
The final part brings a solid, satisfying resolution to almost all the storylines.
And of course, there is a very nice epilogue, that wraps up the story but avoids a “happily ever after” finish.

robot worms exist, folks.

Why I Liked It
It’s a tight story. While the trade Paperback edition clocks in at 416 pages, there was not a lot of fat on it. Supporting characters get their time, but are mostly used to illustrate or reinforce the point the story is getting at. In one case, a minor character passes through twice, both times spinning the story and pushing it further forward.
While the story is not hardcore spaceships and lasers sci-fi, it does have a lot of techno-speculation, such as the possible future of 3D printing. And it posits a future of higher unemployment and the outdating of corporations that is not hard to imagine from where we stand today.
The characters have good senses of humor, and stay consistent to themselves throughout the book. Yes, they change, but not so dramatically that it feels like you’re meeting a new person.

Doctorow handles his dialogue well, although the sex scene he wrote was..well…odd. Not freakish or kinky, just odd – more clinical than lustful/romantic/engaging.
He created a cast of characters that I, as a reader, became invested in. I wanted to know how Perry would deal with being pulled away from his inventing to oversee other Rides. I cared about whether Susan would come back from Russia, or if Freddy would get his in the end.
And like a good book should, this one completely transported me into it’s world.

Like I said, I enjoyed it. If you like Philip K. Dick but don’t want to go quite as dark (this one did have a somewhat happy ending), or if you want some sci-fi that doesn’t stretch credibility too much, this might be a good pick for you.

Happy reading!
And let me know what you’re reading in the comments, too.

A Literary Limerick – The Hitchikers Guide to the Galaxy, Douglas Adams

Today’s music: Dire Straits

Again, not my fault. After this, where I wrote a limerick inspired by @captsingh on twitter, I guess whatever crazed bug that causes someone to want to write limericks bit me. Hard.
So here I am again, trashing another (beloved) novel, just because I can’t seem to stop myself.
But wait – it’s worse! Not only have I come up with a way to disgust and apall you all, but today you’re getting 2 – yes, 2 horrible limericks! All for the same book!
(yes, there are two, no, you don’t want to see the ones that didn’t make the cut!)

If you’ve never read The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, then please go out and do so.
Otherwise you won’t have any idea what I’m babbling about.

If your have read the novel, I hope you loved it. And you still won’t have any idea what I’m babbling about. Douglas Adams would approve.

Just know, dear readers, that I don’t hate you, despite what you might think of my inflicting this on you…

On the worst Thursday ever there was.
The Vogons blew up Earth, just because.
With Ford, Trillian and Zaphod, Arthur jumped in a spacepod.
Their adventures set the universe abuzz.


Arthur Dent didn’t know what to do
Mud on his robe, mud on his shoe
So he questioned friend Ford
Am I going out of my gourd?
But the answer was just forty-two

There are some countries in the world I could be shot for these. Fortunately, this isn’t one of them.

Feel free to do worse in the comments!