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Thread: What Are You Reading Now?

  1. #2341
    Local Character clackamascoug's Avatar
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    I got tired of fallen asleep while I drive listening to books... so I tried the Jack Reacher series by Lee Child. Churned through three books and figured out that they're basically same books. I guess I can skip the other 20.

    When poet puts pen to paper imagination breathes life, finding hearth and home.
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  2. #2342
    Senior Member SteelBlue's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigPiney View Post
    I reserved the four that looked interesting to me.
    There There
    Tommy Orange


    The Great Believers
    Rebecca Makkai


    Where the Dead Sit Talking
    Brandon Hobson


    Gun Love
    Jennifer Clement

    American Marriage looks dumb so that did not go on my to read list.

    Without even reading them, I predict that one of the two Native American ones wins this year.

    So, I've started reading the long list. I just finished Gun Love and I'll be shocked if it's not a finalist. You don't spend a single minute in a happy place and that will affect how a lot of readers ultimately feel about the novel. People who read for escape or strictly for pleasure may hate this one, though it'll be hard for anyone not to appreciate the lyrical prose. I think it's brilliant and strangely beautiful literary fiction but I still have some thinking to do about what it all meant. (Reminded me a bit of Mr. Splitfoot, Piney. I think you read that one).

    Before I started "Gun Love", I dove into "Florida". It's a short story collection. I got about a third through it and I realized I've read several of these before (New Yorker). That frustrates me about short story collections. Anyway, I got bored and thought "let me just check the first page of a different one to snap out of this" and Gun love was closest. The difference in the two books was startling. Opening sentences were "My mother was a cup of sugar. You could borrow her anytime." and a few sentences later: “My mother was so sweet, her hands were always birthday-party sticky. Her breath held the five flavors of Life Savers candy … But sweetness is always looking for Mr. Bad and Mr. Bad can pick out Miss Sweet in any crowd. My mother opened her mouth in a great wide O and breathed him right into her body.”

    I didn't pick up Florida again until Gun Love was devoured.
    Last edited by SteelBlue; 09-17-2018 at 12:25 PM.

  3. #2343

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    Quote Originally Posted by SteelBlue View Post
    So, I've started reading the long list. I just finished Gun Love and I'll be shocked if it's not a finalist. You don't spend a single minute in a happy place and that will affect how a lot of readers ultimately feel about the novel. People who read for escape or strictly for pleasure may hate this one, though it'll be hard for anyone not to appreciate the lyrical prose. I think it's brilliant and strangely beautiful literary fiction but I still have some thinking to do about what it all meant. (Reminded me a bit of Mr. Splitfoot, Piney. I think you read that one).

    Before I started "Gun Love", I dove into "Florida". It's a short story collection. I got about a third through it and I realized I've read several of these before (New Yorker). That frustrates me about short story collections. Anyway, I got bored and thought "let me just check the first page of a different one to snap out of this" and Gun love was closest. The difference in the two books was startling. Opening sentences were "My mother was a cup of sugar. You could borrow her anytime." and a few sentences later: “My mother was so sweet, her hands were always birthday-party sticky. Her breath held the five flavors of Life Savers candy … But sweetness is always looking for Mr. Bad and Mr. Bad can pick out Miss Sweet in any crowd. My mother opened her mouth in a great wide O and breathed him right into her body.”

    I didn't pick up Florida again until Gun Love was devoured.
    I am going to read it based on that quote alone. Wow.
    Dyslexics are teople poo...

  4. #2344
    Board Bookworm happyone's Avatar
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    I just finished Indianapolis

    Very interesting read. It is not just the story of the sinking of the USS Indianapolis in literally the closing days of WW II, but the story of the attempts of the survivors to get the Navy to correct what was in their view a grave injustice. The Indi's Captain, Charles McVay, was court martialed after the sinking.

    One great substory is that of a 13 yr old boy, Hunter Scott, who made the overturning of McVay's court martial his meaning in life after doing a history fair project on the sinking. He first heard of the sinking while watching "Jaws" with his Dad. This is the video clip



    The last commander of the WW II ship's namesake, a LA Class attack sub, USS Indianapolis, also figures prominently in the narrative after he decides to invite the survivors of the WW II ship to it's decommissioning ceremony. They ask him to look into the court martial, and he does.


    Congress eventually passes legislation ordering the Navy to correct McVay's service record in 1999. The Navy slow walks it and it isn't unlit 2005 that his record is amended.
    Last edited by happyone; 09-24-2018 at 06:23 PM.

    I may be small, but I'm slow.

    A veteran - whether active duty, retired, or national guard or reserve is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a blank check made payable to, "The United States of America ", for an amount of "up to and including my life - it's an honor."

  5. #2345
    Striving for mediocrity Art Vandelay's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by happyone View Post
    I just finished Indianapolis

    Very interesting read. It is not just the story of the sinking of the USS Indianapolis in literally the closing days of WW II, but the story of the attempts of the survivors to get the Navy to correct what was in there view a grave injustice. The Indi's Captain, Charles McVay, was court martialed after the sinking.

    One great substory is that of a 13 yr old boy, Hunter Scott, who made the overturning of McVay's court martial his meaning in life after doing a history fair project on the sinking. He first heard of the sinking while watching "Jaws" with his Dad. This is the video clip



    The last commander of the LA Class attack sub, USS Indianapolis, also figures prominently in the narrative after he decides to invite the survivors of the WW II ship to it's decommissioning ceremony. They ask him to look into the court martial, and he does.


    Congress eventually passes legislation ordering the Navy to correct McVay's service record in 1999. The Navy slow walks it and it isn't unlit 2005 that his record is amended.
    Have you read "In Harm's Way"? It sounds like this almost like a long and interesting prologue to that story.

  6. #2346
    Board Bookworm happyone's Avatar
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    Yes I have. It's the same story, but this book tells a more complete story. Only about half the narrative is the story of the sinking and subsequent search and recovery. The authors narrative starts at the very beginning, telling the history of the Indi from her commissioning in 1932. She was Spurance's, commander of the 5th fleet, flag ship and was selected to transport the bomb to Tinian mainly because she was available. She had suffered a Kamikaze strike at Okinawa and had to be sent back to the US for repairs. When a ship was needed to transport the bomb parts she had just finished those repairs.

    In telling the story of the men in the water, it is much more complicated than just sharks attacking the floating men. In fact according to the authors, the vast majority of the deaths were from injuries during the sinking, exposure, salt water poisoning or even plain murder. The sharks were mainly content to eat the dead. They estimated that "only" between 100 - 150 of the 600 who died were from shark attacks. That still makes it the largest shark attack on record.

    If anyone is interested, here are is the author's presentation on BookTV

    https://www.c-span.org/video/?449257-2/indianapolis
    Last edited by happyone; 09-24-2018 at 07:54 PM.

  7. #2347

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    anyone read Harari's latest, 21 lessons for the 21st century?
    I caught his interview with Sam Harris, and I'm intrigued. But it also seems like it might be a riff on Sapiens.
    But, Sapiens is in my top 5 non-fiction, so even a riff likely to be very good.
    I'm trying to decide if it will be my next book.
    I intend to live forever.
    So far, so good.
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  8. #2348
    The dude abides Jeff Lebowski's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian View Post
    anyone read Harari's latest, 21 lessons for the 21st century?
    I caught his interview with Sam Harris, and I'm intrigued. But it also seems like it might be a riff on Sapiens.
    But, Sapiens is in my top 5 non-fiction, so even a riff likely to be very good.
    I'm trying to decide if it will be my next book.
    Sapiens is one of the most overrated books ever.

    Going to pass on this one.
    "There is no creature more arrogant than a self-righteous libertarian on the web, am I right? Those folks are just intolerable."
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  9. #2349
    Local Character clackamascoug's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Lebowski View Post
    Sapiens is one of the most overrated books ever.

    Going to pass on this one.
    I agree. I started it... but never finished it.

    I've got two audible credits but am having a hard time finding something I'd like to curl up with.

    Edit... just got Napoleon... 32 hours. I like some time value for my credits.
    Last edited by clackamascoug; 09-24-2018 at 08:20 PM.

    When poet puts pen to paper imagination breathes life, finding hearth and home.
    -Mid Summer's Night Dream


  10. #2350

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    Quote Originally Posted by clackamascoug View Post

    Edit... just got Napoleon... 32 hours. I like some time value for my credits.
    I'm currently plowing through the second book in the Pillars of the Earth (Kingsbridge) trilogy. It comes in at a solid 41 hours. Enjoying it.

  11. #2351

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    I finally read Black Hawk Down. I can see why it was a bestseller.
    "What are you prepared to do?" - Jimmy Malone

    "What choice?" - Abe Petrovsky

  12. #2352
    Board Bookworm happyone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LiveCoug View Post
    I'm currently plowing through the second book in the Pillars of the Earth (Kingsbridge) trilogy. It comes in at a solid 41 hours. Enjoying it.
    I don't think Ken Follett can write a bad novel

    I throroughly enjoyed all three of the Kingsbridge novels

    I may be small, but I'm slow.

    A veteran - whether active duty, retired, or national guard or reserve is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a blank check made payable to, "The United States of America ", for an amount of "up to and including my life - it's an honor."

  13. #2353
    Board Bookworm happyone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by clackamascoug View Post
    I agree. I started it... but never finished it.

    I've got two audible credits but am having a hard time finding something I'd like to curl up with.

    Edit... just got Napoleon... 32 hours. I like some time value for my credits.
    Which Napoleon?

    I may be small, but I'm slow.

    A veteran - whether active duty, retired, or national guard or reserve is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a blank check made payable to, "The United States of America ", for an amount of "up to and including my life - it's an honor."

  14. #2354
    Bald not naked Pelado's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by happyone View Post
    Which Napoleon?
    pufm5y-l-610x610-t+shirt-napoleon+dynamite-vote+pedro.jpg
    "I think it was King Benjamin who said 'you sorry ass shitbags who have no skills that the market values also have an obligation to have the attitude that if one day you do in fact win the PowerBall Lottery that you will then impart of your substance to those without.'"
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  15. #2355
    Board Bookworm happyone's Avatar
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    ask a silly question ....

    I may be small, but I'm slow.

    A veteran - whether active duty, retired, or national guard or reserve is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a blank check made payable to, "The United States of America ", for an amount of "up to and including my life - it's an honor."

  16. #2356
    Local Character clackamascoug's Avatar
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    Napoleon Dynamite is in an audio book?

    Hot Damn! I love the classics.

    At the three hour mark.... not sure I'm going to make the duration. It makes me tired, and doesn't hold my attention.

    When poet puts pen to paper imagination breathes life, finding hearth and home.
    -Mid Summer's Night Dream


  17. #2357

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    Quote Originally Posted by happyone View Post
    I don't think Ken Follett can write a bad novel

    I throroughly enjoyed all three of the Kingsbridge novels
    I've enjoyed them more than I thought I would. What are your thoughts (besides "I don't think Ken Follett can write a bad novel") on the Century trilogy? I might try that after Kingsbridge..

  18. #2358
    Huge Member BigPiney's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LiveCoug View Post
    I've enjoyed them more than I thought I would. What are your thoughts (besides "I don't think Ken Follett can write a bad novel") on the Century trilogy? I might try that after Kingsbridge..
    I like it. I liked the first one best, the second was almost as good, but for some reason I remember not liking the third as much as the others. Still enjoyable.

  19. #2359
    Board Bookworm happyone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LiveCoug View Post
    I've enjoyed them more than I thought I would. What are your thoughts (besides "I don't think Ken Follett can write a bad novel") on the Century trilogy? I might try that after Kingsbridge..
    It's been awhile since I've read #I (about 3 yrs) and I didn't type up my thoughts on GR. IIRC, it's a full fledged epic in scope and as with all of his novels well written. The plot is convoluted as-all-get-out. The main characters come from all classes in society (rich land/mine owners and the men and women who both work in the big house and in the mines) and from what would be all the warring sides of WW I (British, American, German and Russian). It's mainly about the lead up to and the home front lives of the protaganists. There are main characters on all side of the war. He does let his political sympathies bleed into his characters a bit. The money classes are the bad guys and the little people can do no wrong.

    #II looks at WW II and it's aftermath. I think this is one of his weaker efforts. As with #I it is epic is scope with a convoluted plot. He relies on coincidence a bit too much to put the characters where he wants them. IE he has one of the main characters who happens to be a US senator, on a launch in the middle of Pearl Harbor on the way to have breakfast with the Captain of the Arizona when the Japanese initiate their attack. Another example is couple of gay characters, who are navy comm people and wouldn't be anywhere near an AMTRAC or LCVP, are put ashore with the first wave of Marines at Bougainville and killed. These kind of things happen all through the novel and I found it a bit irritating - Follett is a good enough novelist to provide a more logical explaination for some of these plot points. Again Follett's political sympathies bleed through. I can't think of a single conservative character portrayed in a positive light. The socialists/liberal characters can do no wrong.

    For novels set in War, there are remarkably few combat scenes.

    Still an fun and remarkably quick read. I haven't gotten around to the third one yet

    My thoughts on GR for book II

    https://www.goodreads.com/review/sho..._review_page=1
    Last edited by happyone; 09-27-2018 at 06:34 PM.

    I may be small, but I'm slow.

    A veteran - whether active duty, retired, or national guard or reserve is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a blank check made payable to, "The United States of America ", for an amount of "up to and including my life - it's an honor."

  20. #2360
    Senior Member SteelBlue's Avatar
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    Still working my way through the NBA longlist.

    There There, Tommy Orange. Interesting. A look at what it means to be Urban Native American, i.e. lost identity, rediscovering culture, and how that culture might look in the Urban setting. Told through multiple characters whose stories pull their respective worlds closer and closer until a culminating event at the Oakland Pow Wow.

    Florida, Lauren Groff. Mentioned this one before. Short story collection several of which I'd already read. Had a tough time getting into it.

    An American Marriage, Tayari Jones. This is the one on the list I'd heard of. Obama put it on his summer reading list, and Oprah made it a book club selection (as cheesy as that sounds she usually picks solid work). I liked it.

    So of the 4 I've read, I'd predict An American Marriage and Gun Love will show up on the short list.
    Last edited by SteelBlue; 09-28-2018 at 07:02 AM.

  21. #2361
    The dude abides Jeff Lebowski's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteelBlue View Post
    Still working my way through the NBA longlist.

    There There, Tommy Orange. Interesting. A look at what it means to be Urban Native American, i.e. lost identity, rediscovering culture, and how that culture might look in the Urban setting. Told through multiple characters whose stories pull their respective worlds closer and closer until a culminating event at the Oakland Pow Wow.

    Florida, Lauren Groff. Mentioned this one before. Short story collection several of which I'd already read. Had a tough time getting into it.

    An American Marriage, Tayari Jones. This is the one on the list I'd heard of. Obama put it on his summer reading list, and Oprah made it a book club selection (as cheesy as that sounds she usually picks solid work). I liked it.

    So of the 4 I've read, I'd predict An American Marriage and Gun Love will show up on the short list.
    Come on. None of those books are about professional basketball.
    "There is no creature more arrogant than a self-righteous libertarian on the web, am I right? Those folks are just intolerable."
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  22. #2362

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    Quote Originally Posted by happyone View Post
    Here is one more for your consideration

    http://www.amazon.com/Second-World-W...anthony+beevor

    I haven't read it yet, but it is supposed to be very good. It is on my TBR list, but not a particularly high priority

    I have read the authors books on the Great Patriotic War (Eastern Front) - He ranks right up there with Hastings as one the best writing today
    iím working my way through this and stalingrad. he does a nice job of dumbing it down for us dummies.
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  23. #2363
    Board Bookworm happyone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by old_gregg View Post
    i’m working my way through this and stalingrad. he does a nice job of dumbing it down for us dummies.
    Whatever else you are, you are no dummy

    I'm currently reading Indian War Veterans

    It a collection of first person accounts, mainly enlisted soldiers with some junior officers and even some dependents. of their experiences in the Post Civil War Army up to the end of the Indian Wars. It seems most were written in the '20s or '30s - 40 to 50 yrs after the fact. Ergo there is some errors in memory that the editor tries to correct. However he leaves the original accounts intact. I'm about half way through and the way the Veterans looked at their enemy is definitely not PC. However at the same time there was a lot of respect.

    There is some interesting accounts of both the Battle of the Little Big Horn and Wounded Knee, both of which the 7th Cav played a major role. One thing I hadn't realized was that a couple of the company commanders at the LBH, still had the same companies/troops at WK almost 15 yrs later.

    Another fascinating story (at least to me) is the story of the 5th Cav's transfer from Southwest Texas to the Dakotas/Montana in 1888. Instead of putting the Regiment on Trains for at least part of the 2000+ mile journey, the Regiment rode their horses all the way there. Some of the Troops journeyed more than 2200 miles in roughly 3 months 3 weeks. The reason that trains were not used is not explained. I'm guessing the War Department was just cheap This sure different from the way the Modern Army moves units. Today, unless it involves going to war, when a unit moves, nobody actually moves, the Army just reflags the respective units.

    For example - when the 3rd ID came back from Germany in the 1990s, they just renamed the 24th ID at Ft. Stewart the 3rd ID and deactivated the 24th, no people actually moved from Germany to Ga.

    Many of the stories come from various Indian War Veteran Organizations publications. Some of these were still active well into the 1960s
    Last edited by happyone; 10-02-2018 at 03:47 AM.

    I may be small, but I'm slow.

    A veteran - whether active duty, retired, or national guard or reserve is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a blank check made payable to, "The United States of America ", for an amount of "up to and including my life - it's an honor."

  24. #2364
    Board Bookworm happyone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by happyone View Post
    Whatever else you are, you are no dummy

    I'm currently reading Indian War Veterans

    It a collection of first person accounts, mainly enlisted soldiers with some junior officers and even some dependents. of their experiences in the Post Civil War Army up to the end of the Indian Wars. It seems most were written in the '20s or '30s - 40 to 50 yrs after the fact. Ergo there is some errors in memory that the editor tries to correct. However he leaves the original accounts intact. I'm about half way through and the way the Veterans looked at their enemy is definitely not PC. However at the same time there was a lot of respect...
    I finished this one, a very uneven read. That said, I was fascinated with it. It is a collection of first person accounts, mainly from enlisted soldiers - but a few lts and cpts and even some dependents stories are included. They are all from published sources, mainly veteran magazines and were published in the 20's and 30's. There is absolutely no attempt at balance - there are no Native American accounts included. With those stipulations, a very informative read and the reader can get a good grasp of the attitudes of those men

    For anyone interested, my thoughts

    currently reading

    Friends Divided

    A look at John Adams and Thomas Jefferson's friendship, estrangement and renewed friendship
    Last edited by happyone; 10-07-2018 at 06:05 PM.

    I may be small, but I'm slow.

    A veteran - whether active duty, retired, or national guard or reserve is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a blank check made payable to, "The United States of America ", for an amount of "up to and including my life - it's an honor."

  25. #2365
    вот так штука CardiacCoug's Avatar
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    David Brooks new book The Road to Character is pretty good.

    I’m a fan of the Adam I and Adam II construct and also the idea that people will be happier if they look outward at their place in the world and think “Where can I do the most good?” rather than looking inward for some type of abstract self-realization. It goes well with a lot of the stuff Jordan Peterson has said.

  26. #2366

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    My book club chose this one for this month. I couldnít make it through the first chapter.

    FD09954D-A58D-489F-85ED-ACBF7FFA3212.jpg

  27. #2367
    Time to camp HuskyFreeNorthwest's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Babs View Post
    My book club chose this one for this month. I couldn’t make it through the first chapter.

    FD09954D-A58D-489F-85ED-ACBF7FFA3212.jpg
    Was the font too small or too many big words?
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  28. #2368

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    Quote Originally Posted by HuskyFreeNorthwest View Post
    Was the font too small or too many big words?
    Too self congratulatory.

  29. #2369
    The dude abides Jeff Lebowski's Avatar
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    Educated by Tara Westover.

    Rural Idaho mormon version of Hillbilly Elegy.
    "There is no creature more arrogant than a self-righteous libertarian on the web, am I right? Those folks are just intolerable."
    "It's no secret that the great American pastime is no longer baseball. Now it's sanctimony." -- Guy Periwinkle, The Nix.
    "Juilliardk N I ibuprofen Hyu I U unhurt u" - creekster

  30. #2370

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    Quote Originally Posted by CardiacCoug View Post
    David Brooks new book The Road to Character is pretty good.

    I’m a fan of the Adam I and Adam II construct and also the idea that people will be happier if they look outward at their place in the world and think “Where can I do the most good?” rather than looking inward for some type of abstract self-realization. It goes well with a lot of the stuff Jordan Peterson has said.
    this looks good. thanks for the recommendation.
    I'm like LeBron James.
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