Reading Lists

I got stuck in a rut earlier today thinking about Albert Camus’ The Stranger. Not a great way to spend your mid-day, post-lunch, I can assure.

The things that have been weighing heavily on my mind – politics (both office and national varieties), what I want out of my “home life”, religion and faith – you know, the big questions, are still unresolved but I bled into that dark place today. Not good.

I contemplated (thought about, not considered joining up) Satanism, Libertarianism, Atheism, Agnosticism, Existentialism and Death. All in the space of about an hour. I was busy.

Where I meted out, personally, was the need to get some definition through perspective and experience. A little existentialist, a little pragmatist. You see, I’m going to Maui a week from Saturday and reading material is a must for plane rides and beach vacations.

Here’s my short list. Hopefully I come away with perspective, if not epiphany, serenity or my own new philosophy.

  • Engleby: A Novel by Sebastian Faulks
  • The new Bond book, Devil May Care, by Faulks under commission of the Fleming family hits bookstores tomorrow. I haven’t read any of his work and want to try something accessible before reading the very pulp-y Bond.

  • Everything Is Illuminated
  • I feel like I should have read this already. Much like The Amazing Adventure of Kavalier & Clay, I’m ashamed to admit that I’m so late to the game.

  • Grey by Jon Armstrong
  • I have an advance reader copy that is begging to be read.

  • Kerouac’s On the Road (Penguin Great Books of the 20th Century)
  • It’s time. I’m on a bit of journey, it was mentioned in Lost and I got a copy for free.

  • Another book of your own suggestion
  • I’m looking for something entertaining (obviously) but one with themes relating to change, movement and self-discovery.

    I won’t laugh at you if you suggest Walden by Thoreau, but I won’t read it.

Happy Reading! (And hopefully happy me soon too, though Hawaii will help regardless of the book).


As a part of my ever-increasing “beach body” regimen (we’re hitting Maui AND Hilton Head Island over the Summer) I’ve been trying to increase the amount/regularity of push-ups I do.

Turns out push-ups are a great indicator of overall health and wellness and *should* be a part of everyone’s exercise routine. More fuel to the fire that I should be doing them, especially with a keen eye on perfect form.

Side note: I really try to do all my weightlifting focusing on form over gobs of weight. I’d rather move the muscle correctly and target a very specific area than tear/pull/dislocate something.

Here’s a handy chart from the Washington Post for those of now inclined to get horizontal and do some push ups (and sit ups) yourselves.

And if you’re wondering what started my newest fondness for push ups (I was on a similar kick prior to our last trip to Hawaii) it’s the fact that my mother-in-law got me a set of those push up pro handles for Christmas. Huge pectoral muscles (thanks, Ren) are the gift that keeps on giving, don’tcha know.