Book Challenge: Scotland, Scotland, Freddie Mercury

What's On the Bookshelf?

At the end of it all! I like this. Much quicker.

Twenty-eight: Last book you read

The Importance of Being Seven by Alexander McCall Smith. I reread the entire 44 Scotland Street series this summer, in between the massive tomes about and by T. E. Lawrence.

I’m quite fond of the series, as you’ve probably gathered. I like McCall Smith’s books because they are fun to read, but also intelligent and hold up on rereads. I’m not much of a book buyer, as I’m constrained with space and love to visit libraries for the treasures hidden in the shelves, which is how I found this series.

These books focus on relationships, on friendships, and on the good of humanity. Very refreshing, particularly after reading the newspaper any given day of the week. The book was easy to read, yet not dumbed down, as is often the case. The thinking person’s popcorn read.
Twenty-nine: Book you’re currently reading

How the Scots Invented the Modern World by Arthur Herman. I’m moving to Scotland in less than a week. I saw this book at the library, and figured I should read it. At the very least, it would give me an overview of the Scottish philosophers and the development of Scottish culture. Which is what its doing. I am learning quite a bit, and am thoroughly looking forward to the chapter on scientific contributions.

I have about three chapters left. A good read, now I’m deciding which philosopher I’m going to tackle while in Scotland. When I travel for long periods, I try to read at least one great thinker of the country I’m in. In Italy, I read Niccolo Machiavelli’s The Prince. The debate is either to read David Hume or Adam Smith. I’m leaning towards Smith.
Thirty: Favorite coffee table book

This is an easy one. It’s Classic Queen by Mick Rock. Filled with his photographs of Queen in the 1970s, including the very very famous one, the cover of Queen II. I love flipping through this book and looking at the photos. Well designed, lovely to look at, and a book that, when I have a coffee table, will be proudly displayed.

On the Who

General Geekiness

My love for The Who began in my senior year of high school. It was a long, slow process, this becoming attuned to a “new” band, but it seemed like the world was kicking me in the seat of my pants to listen to them.

My first encounter was the summer before senior year. I was at a Shakespearean acting camp, and as luck would have it, I wore my Beatles shirt the same day as my friend Nick wore his Who shirt. “Who are they?” I asked. Nick listed their most famous songs–“Baba O’Riley,” “Pinball Wizard,” etc–and I stared at him like an idiot.

Flash forward three months. I sat in art class, and my teacher played The Who to get himself psyched for their concert. I liked it enough, but didn’t think anything of it.

A couple months later I was looking online at Beatles and Queen fan art, when I noticed a few of the artists also drew The Who. Intrigued, I went to the library and listened to a few Who albums–Greatest Hits, Tommy and Quadrophenia. With the opening notes of Tommy‘s “Overture” I was hooked.