Fourth Update 03/28/2005
"The Road to Reality" by Roger Penrose
I'm making very slow progress on the above books because I've been "wasting my time" creating a weblog on my site here, although I find that it's fun.  I'm getting to learn new things to do on the computer!   Well, it just proves again that I'm an addict?  Oh, why fight it?  What little time the past few days I have been reading I've spent on the huge Penrose book.  Kind of interesting about number theory but I don't pursue it too deeply; I just want to get the flavor for it and get the general ideas on first pass.  (How many passes do I expect to make on this huge tomb before I croak?) ha ha
Third Update 03/25/2005
"The Road to Reality" by Roger Penrose
I've been making a little progress, but not much.  I finished his hyperbolic geometry discussion and looked up some stuff on it via Google.  Now I'm on numbers.  It's almost boring but not quite.  I haven't been doing the exercises.
"Chain of Command" by Seymour Hersch
I made a start on this.  The intro by David Remmick is good and sets the tone, talking but the Mai Lai massacre.  I'm on the first chapter now.
Second Update, 03/21/2005:
Literary Treasures from the Western Maine Foothills, Volumes I and II, By Peter Lenz
I bought these two volumes on Sunday at the bookstore close by the Norway UU church after discussions with Peter Lenz at the coffee hour.   They each have over 400 pages.  To quote from the covers, "Rediscovered & Original Artistic & Cultural Heritage, Historic, Humerous & Modern Pearls, a Reader and Anthology, poetry -- fiction -- non fiction -- letters -- essays -- song -- speeches -- chronicals -- sermons -- children's -- journals -- commentary".  In other words, a little bit of everything.   These eveolved from an oral history project Peter was involved in.  Should be great fun perusing these volumes.  He's asked me to contribute a piece for the next on-going volume in the series.
Update, 03/21/2005:

"Bernard Shaw" by Michael Holroyd
I finished it!  The last bit brought tears to my eyes.  The 'Libera Me' from Verdi's Requiem was played at Shaw's funeral, his request, so, I put on the Robert Shaw (who else?) version and cranked up the volume.  What an energetic and positive piece with a beautiful reverent ending!  Just like Shaw?   He was active and full of it up until he took that fall in his garden in his 95th year.  Wonder if I could make it another twenty years?   

What I'm Trying to Read 03/18/2005:

"Bernard Shaw" by Michael Holroyd.
I'm up to page 720 of this 793 page book.  I've been distracted    by the two new books below.  I received them a couple weeks ago now from Amazon.  But I want to get back soon to finishing Shaw.  It's an amazing book.

"Incompleteness: The Proof and Paradox of Kurt Gödel"
by Rebecca Goldstein

I became fascinated with this book soon after I got it.  I think I
have a better handle now on this stuff, but still more to learn. 
I'm almost through with the book.   Gödel sure was a weird one
but what he proved is supposed to be, well, is earth shaking.


"The Road to Reality" by Roger Penrose
This is another huge book, like the Holroyd book and will be a
lot more challenging to read, for sure, not that reading about
G.B. Shaw wasn't challenging, and fascinating.  I'm into the
second chapter and just starting on hyperbolic geometry.


"Dear Mother: A Scrapbook of Memories of Josephine Crane Bradley" by David Bradley and family
This is a very touching and humorous set of memories written
mainly by David who has just turned 90 and has a wonderful
family and is an amazing guy himself.  He sings in the Norway
Maine UU church choir with me.  I've finished it and wrote a page in appreciation for David which I mailed to him.


"Chain of Command" by Seymour Hersch
My buddy Thomas Savarino bought this book for me and had
it sent from Amazon.  He says it will get me all cranked up
which is probably true.  I've got to get to this soon!  (Maybe
I'll send him Rebecca's book above as Tom is into this sort
of thing, as a mathematician, metamathematician?)


"Incompleteness: The Proof and Paradox of Kurt Gödel"
by Rebecca Goldstein

I finished this a couple days ago.  I followed a good part of her presentation of the proof but there's still a lot more to it which I don't grasp.  She talks a lot about what a strange person (genius) Kurt Gödel was.  He was definitely isolated and paranoid at the end of his life.  He and Einstein were both Platonists.  Wittgenstein doesn't come across as that great.
What I'm Reading 04/06/05:

"The Road to Reality" by Roger Penrose
I'm stuck right now between this Penrose book and doing all kinds of other things, like working on this website and my blog, listening to Gaelic expressions, using my Resp@rate, testing my ability to pick out musical intervals, reading my list of blogs headed by Juan Cole, and etc..  Oh yes, and being involved with the Norway UU church, especially as its treasurer. 
What I'm Reading 04/23/05

"Sudden Sea : The Great Hurricane of 1938" by  R.A. Scotti
A Weatford Academy class of 1946 classmate of mine, Shirley E. MacDougall, recommended this book.  It was fascinating from beginning to end.  I was but dimly aware of the terrible sea surges that hit the coastal regions, especially in Rhode Island, where many people were swept away.  Westford got a heavy dose as well (not in the book) and I still remember vividly as a boy of nine holding my father's hand as we walked rapidly home from the store in the ever increasing wind.  "Look at these cracks in the sidewalk!", I shouted to my father.   A giant tree beside the sidewalk was swaying and a few minutes later it came crashing down.   Fortunatley we never stopped to examine those cracks and kept going until we got into the house safely out of the maelstrom.