I have been interested in the 12th century since my 20s when it was very fashionable to say of anybody with whom you disagreed, which was basically anybody over the age of 30, "One of the great minds of the 12th century", and one day I thought, "I don't know anything about the 12 century. " So I started buying books, reading about it, and I discovered it was a period of great flowering, it was a Renaissance before what we think is the Renaissance, the Italian Renaissance of the 16th century.
We try to exert a Ted Williams kind of discipline. In his book The Science of Hitting, Ted explains that he carved the strike zone into 77 cells, each the size of a baseball. Swinging only at balls in his "best" cell, he knew, would allow him to bat. 400; reaching for balls in his "worst" spot, the low outside corner of the strike zone, would reduce him to. 230. In other words, waiting for the fat pitch would mean a trip to the Hall of Fame; swinging indiscriminately would mean a ticket to the minors.
If you like eating meat but want to eat ethically, this is the book for you. From the hard-headed, clear-eyed, and sympathetic perspective of butchers who care deeply about the animals whose parts they sell, the customers who buy their meats, and the pleasures of eating, this book has much to teach. It’s an instant classic, making it clear why meat is part of the food revolution. I see it as the new Bible of meat aficionados and worth reading by all food lovers, meat-eating and not.
Rebecca was an academic star. Her new book was on the phenomenon of word casings, a term she'd invented for words that no longer had meaning outside quotation marks. English was full of these empty words--"friend" and "real" and "story" and "change"--words that had been shucked of their meanings and reduced to husks. Some, like "identity" and "search" and "cloud," had clearly been drained of life by their Web usage. With others, the reasons were more complex; how had "American" become an ironic term? How had "democracy" come to be used in an arch, mocking way?
You don't see Los Angeles erecting a museum dedicated to the birth place of the Crips and the Bloods and the Mexican Mafia, with a special guided bus tour highlighting the rise of the crack trade, yet you can hop on a bus in Chicago tomorrow to see the famous locales of murders. I have to imagine there's some wonderful academic book on the sociology of this out there.