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Warning: Table 'edadmin_drpl1.watchdog' doesn't exist query: INSERT INTO watchdog (uid, type, message, variables, severity, link, location, referer, hostname, timestamp) VALUES (0, 'php', '%message in %file on line %line.', 'a:4:{s:6:\"%error\";s:12:\"user warning\";s:8:\"%message\";s:870:\"Table './edadmin_drpl1/cache_filter' is marked as crashed and should be repaired\nquery: UPDATE cache_filter SET data = '<p><center><br />\\n<table align=\\"center\\" border=\\"0\\" cellpadding=\\"0\\" cellspacing=\\"0\\">\\n<tbody>\\n<tr>\\n<td>\\n<div style=\\"text-align: center;\\"><a href=\\"http://ed-rex.com/bumblepuppy\\" target=\\"_blank\\"><img src=\\&qu in /home/edadmin/public_html/includes/database.mysql.inc on line 135

Warning: Table 'edadmin_drpl1.watchdog' doesn't exist query: INSERT INTO watchdog (uid, type, message, variables, severity, link, location, referer, hostname, timestamp) VALUES (0, 'php', '%message in %file on line %line.', 'a:4:{s:6:\"%error\";s:12:\"user warning\";s:8:\"%message\";s:224:\"Table './edadmin_drpl1/cache_filter' is marked as crashed and should be repaired\nquery: SELECT data, created, headers, expire, serialized FROM cache_filter WHERE cid = '2:1587bce80743d25a13699439e1436ddf'\";s:5:\"%file\";s:44:\"/home/edadmin/public_html/includes/cache.inc\";s:5:\"%line\";i:27;}', 3, '', 'http://ed-rex.com/blog/december_2012', '', '54.163.210.170', 1513339639) in /home/edadmin/public_html/includes/database.mysql.inc on line 135

Warning: Table 'edadmin_drpl1.watchdog' doesn't exist query: INSERT INTO watchdog (uid, type, message, variables, severity, link, location, referer, hostname, timestamp) VALUES (0, 'php', '%message in %file on line %line.', 'a:4:{s:6:\"%error\";s:12:\"user warning\";s:8:\"%message\";s:828:\"Table './edadmin_drpl1/cache_filter' is marked as crashed and should be repaired\nquery: UPDATE cache_filter SET data = '<p><center><br />\\n<table style=\\"height: 645px; width: 285px;\\">\\n<tbody>\\n<tr>\\n<td><a href=\\"http://www.bppress.ca/product/old-mans-last-sauna/\\" target=\\"_blank\\"><img alt=\\"The Old Man\\'s Last Sauna, cover image\\" src=\\"/sites/default/files/2013_06/sauna_ad04.jpg\\" st in /home/edadmin/public_html/includes/database.mysql.inc on line 135

Warning: Table 'edadmin_drpl1.watchdog' doesn't exist query: INSERT INTO watchdog (uid, type, message, variables, severity, link, location, referer, hostname, timestamp) VALUES (0, 'php', '%message in %file on line %line.', 'a:4:{s:6:\"%error\";s:12:\"user warning\";s:8:\"%message\";s:224:\"Table './edadmin_drpl1/cache_filter' is marked as crashed and should be repaired\nquery: SELECT data, created, headers, expire, serialized FROM cache_filter WHERE cid = '2:a641667eb8686ec6a410a6d1682e9f16'\";s:5:\"%file\";s:44:\"/home/edadmin/public_html/includes/cache.inc\";s:5:\"%line\";i:27;}', 3, '', 'http://ed-rex.com/blog/december_2012', '', '54.163.210.170', 1513339639) in /home/edadmin/public_html/includes/database.mysql.inc on line 135

Warning: Table 'edadmin_drpl1.watchdog' doesn't exist query: INSERT INTO watchdog (uid, type, message, variables, severity, link, location, referer, hostname, timestamp) VALUES (0, 'php', '%message in %file on line %line.', 'a:4:{s:6:\"%error\";s:12:\"user warning\";s:8:\"%message\";s:2569:\"Table './edadmin_drpl1/cache_filter' is marked as crashed and should be repaired\nquery: UPDATE cache_filter SET data = '<p><center><br />\\n<table style=\\"width: 275px;\\">\\n<tbody>\\n<tr>\\n<td style=\\"background-color: rgb(176, 83, 162); text-align: center;\\">\\n<div><a href=\\"http://ed-rex.com/mailman/listinfo/ed-rex-update_ed-rex.com\\" target=\\"_blank\\"><strong><span style=\\"font-f in /home/edadmin/public_html/includes/database.mysql.inc on line 135
December 2012 | www.ed-rex.com


December 2012

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  • user warning: Table './edadmin_drpl1/cache_filter' is marked as crashed and should be repaired query: UPDATE cache_filter SET data = '<h3><big><big><big><a href=\"http://ed-rex.com/reviews/books/the_hobbit\" target=\"_blank\">Return to Middle Earth: <em>The Hobbit</em></a></big></big></big></h3>\n<p><center><img src=\"http://ed-rex.com/sites/default/files/2012_05/rivendel_by_tolkien_detail.jpg\" /><br />\n<strong><em><small>Detail from a painting by J.R.R. Tolkien</small></em></strong></center></p>\n<p><span style=\"font-variant: small-caps;\"><strong><small>December 29, 2012, OTTAWA &mdash; </small></strong></span>Believe it or not, <a href=\"https://www.facebook.com/PeterJacksonNZ\" target=\"_blank\">Peter Jackson</a>\'s <a href=\"http://www.thehobbit.com/\" target=\"_blank\">latest film</a> is only indirectly responsible for my decision to re-read <em>The Hobbit</em> (again). The proximal cause was Tor.com\'s (no-doubt entirely commercial) decision to ask the redoubtable <a href=\"http://kate-nepveu.dreamwidth.org/profile\" target=\"_blank\">Kate Nepveu</a> to lead a weekly, chapter-by-chapter <a href=\"http://www.tor.com/features/series/the-hobbit-reread\" target=\"_blank\">\"re-read\" of the novel</a> in conjunction with the release of the first (of three!) movies based on J.R.R. Tolkien\'s 300 page children\'s story.</p>\n<table style=\"margin: 10px 0px 0px 10px;\" align=\"right\" cellpadding=\"0\" cellspacing=\"0\" width=\"120\">\n<tbody>\n<tr>\n<td style=\"padding: 0px; background-color: rgb(221, 221, 221);\"><iframe src=\"http://rcm-ca.amazon.ca/e/cm?t=edirexonl-20&amp;o=15&amp;p=8&amp;l=as1&amp;asins=0007509847&amp;ref=qf_sp_asin_til&amp;fc1=000000&amp;IS2=1&amp;lt1=_blank&amp;m=amazon&amp;lc1=0000FF&amp;bc1=000000&amp;bg1=FFFFFF&amp;f=ifr\" style=\"width:120px;height:240px;\" scrolling=\"no\" marginwidth=\"0\" marginheight=\"0\" frameborder=\"0\"></iframe></td>\n</tr>\n</tbody>\n</table>\n<p>My intention had been to follow along at Nepveu\'s chapter-a-week pace and, perhaps, to contribute to the ongoing conversation she was (and is!) sure to inspire, but Tolkien\'s deceptively simple prose and thematically complex fairy story swept me away (as it has a number of times before). I finished the book in a couple of days.</p>\n<p>The short version is that <em>The Hobbit</em> remains a delightful adventure story and fairy tale, even if it is the work of a writer who has yet to reach the full extent of his creative powers.</p>\n<p>That said, it also a very strange book, that strays very far indeed from a typical heroic path in favour of wandering the fields of moral complexity and (relatively) complex characterizations. The protagonists are far from perfect and even the villains show surprising signs of humanity.</p>\n<p>A lovely book to read aloud to a child, there is every chance that you will have to read it twice, since you\'ll likely treat yourself to the whole thing before you sit down for Chapter Two with said youngster.</p>\n<p>The long version <a href=\"http://ed-rex.com/reviews/books/the_hobbit\" target=\"_blank\">lives inside</a>. (As usual, there are spoilers.)</p>\n<p>_______</p>\n<h3><big><big><a href=\"http://ed-rex.com/fact/defeating_piracy\" target=\"_blank\">How to defeat piracy <em>and</em> keep your readers happy</a></big></big></h3>\n<table cellpadding=\"0\" cellspacing=\"0\" width=\"120\" align=\"left\" style=\"margin: 5px 8px; float: left;\">\n<tr>\n<td style=\"padding:0px;\"><iframe src=\"http://rcm-ca.amazon.ca/e/cm?t=edirexonl-20&amp;o=15&amp;p=8&amp;l=as1&amp;asins=0615688500&amp;ref=qf_sp_asin_til&amp;fc1=000000&amp;IS2=1&amp;lt1=_blank&amp;m=amazon&amp;lc1=0000FF&amp;bc1=000000&amp;bg1=FFFFFF&amp;f=ifr\" style=\"width:120px;height:240px;\" scrolling=\"no\" marginwidth=\"0\" marginheight=\"0\" frameborder=\"0\"></iframe></td></tr>\n</table>\n<p><span style=\"font-variant: small-caps;\"><strong><small>December 14, 2012, OTTAWA &mdash; </small></strong></span>I\'m more than halfway through the new novel by the excellent story-teller <a href=\"http://kriswrites.com\" target=\"_blank\">Kristine Kathryn Rusch</a>. As I fully-expected, <a href=\"http://kriswrites.com/2012/12/11/blowback-published/\" target=\"_blank\"><em>Blowback</em></a> is proving to be a hell of a page-turner &mdash; or rather, a hell of a screen-changer.\n</p><p>\"Screen-changer\"? Okay, I\'m sure there\'s a better term out there. What I mean is, I bought <em>Blowback</em> as an electronic book, not paper book.</p>\n<p>I pretty much fell in love with e-books from the moment I bought <a href=\"http://ed-rex.com/reviews/technology/e-readers\" target=\"_blank\">an reader</a> just over a year ago, but it\'s been a problem getting books for it. Too often, new books are either not available in electronic versions in Canada or else they are available but encumbered by Digital Rights Management systems that don\'t play nice with my Linux-based operating system.</p>\n<p>So it felt almost revolutionary to be able to simply buy, <em>and then read</em> Rusch\'s new novel without either stealing it or jumping through a myriad of electronic hoops in order to do so.</p>\n<p><a href=\"http://ed-rex.com/fact/defeating_piracy\" target=\"_blank\">Defeating Piracy: Kristyne Kathryn Rusch is doing it right.</a></p>\n<p>_______</p>\n<h3><big><big><a href=\"http://ed-rex.com/about/rust_never_sleeps\" target=\"_blank\">Neil Young, Crazy Horse and Me (then, and now)</a></big></big></h3>\n<table cellpadding=\"0\" cellspacing=\"0\" width=\"235\" align=\"left\" style=\"margin: 5px 8px; float: left;\">\n<tr>\n<td style=\"padding:0px;\"><img src=\"http://ed-rex.com/sites/default/files/2012_05/roll_another_number-Tom_Kelly235pxb.jpg\" /><br />\n<small><strong>Neil Young and Crazy Horse in Ottawa, November 24, 2012. Screen-shot lifted from a <a href=\"http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h74ixeAtN1U\" target=\"_blank\">video</a> posted to YouTube by <a href=\"http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCRFQO76joP2XW7Ozk-Gxzdg\" target=\"_blank\">Tom Kelly</a>.</strong></small></td></tr>\n</table>\n<p><span style=\"font-variant: small-caps;\"><strong><small>December 10, 2012, OTTAWA &mdash; </small></strong></span>I did something I swore I\'d never do again a couple of decades ago: saw a concert at a big venue.</p>\n<p>The band was Neil Young and Crazy Horse, on whose film, <em>Rust Never Sleeps</em>, I walked out in outrage when I was a kid.</p>\n<p>I\'ve <a href=\"http://ed-rex.com/about/rust_never_sleeps\" target=\"_blank\">written about that memory here</a>.</p>\n<p>As for the concert (and what a concert!) itself, my review lives at <a href=\"http://ed-rex.com/reviews/live/neil_young_crazy_horse_2012\" target=\"_blank\">Young and Crazy: The alchemy of defiance</a>.</p>\n<p>_______</p>\n', created = 1513339639, expire = 1513426039, headers = '', serialized = 0 WHERE cid = '2:a144f5356284b66c045100e8739cf307' in /home/edadmin/public_html/includes/cache.inc on line 112.
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  • user warning: Table './edadmin_drpl1/cache_filter' is marked as crashed and should be repaired query: UPDATE cache_filter SET data = '<p><center><br />\n<table style=\"width: 275px;\">\n<tbody>\n<tr>\n<td style=\"background-color: rgb(176, 83, 162); text-align: center;\">\n<div><a href=\"http://ed-rex.com/mailman/listinfo/ed-rex-update_ed-rex.com\" target=\"_blank\"><strong><span style=\"font-family: georgia,serif;\"><big>Stop being late to the party!</big></span></strong></a></div>\n<p>\n<div><span style=\"color: rgb(204, 255, 0);\"><em><span style=\"font-size: 24px;\"><strong><span style=\"font-family: georgia,serif;\">Subscribe!</span></strong></span></em></span></div>\n</p><p><a href=\"http://ed-rex.com/mailman/listinfo/ed-rex-update_ed-rex.com\" target=\"_blank\"><img alt=\"Subscribe to my newsletter!\" src=\"http://ed-rex.com/sites/default/files/2011_07/subscribe_ad02.jpg\" style=\"width: 275px; height: 108px;\" /></a></p>\n<div><span style=\"color: rgb(255, 255, 0);\"></span></div>\n<div><strong><span style=\"font-family: georgia,serif;\">Subscribe to the <em>Edifice Rex</em> mailing list to be notified whenever there&#39;s an update!</span></strong></div>\n<div>&nbsp;</div>\n<div><strong><span style=\"font-family: georgia,serif;\"><big><big><big><a href=\"http://ed-rex.com/mailman/listinfo/ed-rex-update_ed-rex.com\" target=\"_blank\">Click here to sign up</a></big></big></big><br />\n(I promise, I won\'t abuse your trust; I won\'t sell your address to anyone or anything else, no matter how tempting the offer.)</span></strong></div>\n<div><a href=\"http://ed-rex.com/mailman/listinfo/ed-rex-update_ed-rex.com\" target=\"_blank\">&nbsp;</a></div>\n</td>\n</tr>\n</tbody>\n</table>\n<p></p></center></p>\n', created = 1513339639, expire = 1513426039, headers = '', serialized = 0 WHERE cid = '2:a641667eb8686ec6a410a6d1682e9f16' in /home/edadmin/public_html/includes/cache.inc on line 112.

Return to Middle Earth: The Hobbit


Detail from a painting by J.R.R. Tolkien

December 29, 2012, OTTAWA — Believe it or not, Peter Jackson's latest film is only indirectly responsible for my decision to re-read The Hobbit (again). The proximal cause was Tor.com's (no-doubt entirely commercial) decision to ask the redoubtable Kate Nepveu to lead a weekly, chapter-by-chapter "re-read" of the novel in conjunction with the release of the first (of three!) movies based on J.R.R. Tolkien's 300 page children's story.

My intention had been to follow along at Nepveu's chapter-a-week pace and, perhaps, to contribute to the ongoing conversation she was (and is!) sure to inspire, but Tolkien's deceptively simple prose and thematically complex fairy story swept me away (as it has a number of times before). I finished the book in a couple of days.

The short version is that The Hobbit remains a delightful adventure story and fairy tale, even if it is the work of a writer who has yet to reach the full extent of his creative powers.

That said, it also a very strange book, that strays very far indeed from a typical heroic path in favour of wandering the fields of moral complexity and (relatively) complex characterizations. The protagonists are far from perfect and even the villains show surprising signs of humanity.

A lovely book to read aloud to a child, there is every chance that you will have to read it twice, since you'll likely treat yourself to the whole thing before you sit down for Chapter Two with said youngster.

The long version lives inside. (As usual, there are spoilers.)

_______

How to defeat piracy and keep your readers happy

December 14, 2012, OTTAWA — I'm more than halfway through the new novel by the excellent story-teller Kristine Kathryn Rusch. As I fully-expected, Blowback is proving to be a hell of a page-turner — or rather, a hell of a screen-changer.

"Screen-changer"? Okay, I'm sure there's a better term out there. What I mean is, I bought Blowback as an electronic book, not paper book.

I pretty much fell in love with e-books from the moment I bought an reader just over a year ago, but it's been a problem getting books for it. Too often, new books are either not available in electronic versions in Canada or else they are available but encumbered by Digital Rights Management systems that don't play nice with my Linux-based operating system.

So it felt almost revolutionary to be able to simply buy, and then read Rusch's new novel without either stealing it or jumping through a myriad of electronic hoops in order to do so.

Defeating Piracy: Kristyne Kathryn Rusch is doing it right.

_______

Neil Young, Crazy Horse and Me (then, and now)


Neil Young and Crazy Horse in Ottawa, November 24, 2012. Screen-shot lifted from a video posted to YouTube by Tom Kelly.

December 10, 2012, OTTAWA — I did something I swore I'd never do again a couple of decades ago: saw a concert at a big venue.

The band was Neil Young and Crazy Horse, on whose film, Rust Never Sleeps, I walked out in outrage when I was a kid.

I've written about that memory here.

As for the concert (and what a concert!) itself, my review lives at Young and Crazy: The alchemy of defiance.

_______

Spread the word!


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