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Archive for August, 2011

When in doubt, post the Top 100 SciFi list

Posted by Lissa on August 30, 2011

Because I have no post fodder for today, and all the cool kids are doing it, and better late than never . . .  (I’ve added comments and questions in parentheses)

1. The Lord Of The Rings Trilogy, by J.R.R. Tolkien

2. The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy, by Douglas Adams

3. Ender’s Game, by Orson Scott Card

4. The Dune Chronicles, by Frank Herbert (I made it through the first three or four books, so that counts, right?)

5. A Song Of Ice And Fire Series, by George R. R. Martin

6. 1984, by George Orwell

7. Fahrenheit 451, by Ray Bradbury

8. The Foundation Trilogy, by Isaac Asimov

9. Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley

10. American Gods, by Neil Gaiman

11. The Princess Bride, by William Goldman (I adore how this book is set up)

12. The Wheel Of Time Series, by Robert Jordan (I stopped at number two or three, bored)

13. Animal Farm, by George Orwell

14. Neuromancer, by William Gibson

15. Watchmen, by Alan Moore (I saw the wretched awful terrible movie, but that doesn’t count)

16. I, Robot, by Isaac Asimov (again, saw the movie, but that one was okay)

17. Stranger In A Strange Land, by Robert Heinlein (a birthday gift from my mom, who loved it as much as I do)

18. The Kingkiller Chronicles, by Patrick Rothfuss

19. Slaughterhouse-Five, by Kurt Vonnegut

20. Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley

21. Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep?, by Philip K. Dick

22. The Handmaid’s Tale, by Margaret Atwood (scifi? huh?)

23. The Dark Tower Series, by Stephen King

24. 2001: A Space Odyssey, by Arthur C. Clarke

25. The Stand, by Stephen King

26. Snow Crash, by Neal Stephenson

27. The Martian Chronicles, by Ray Bradbury

28. Cat’s Cradle, by Kurt Vonnegut

29. The Sandman Series, by Neil Gaiman

30. A Clockwork Orange, by Anthony Burgess

31. Starship Troopers, by Robert Heinlein (I thought the movie was okay until I read the book. Then I realized how terrible the flick was.)

32. Watership Down, by Richard Adams (ummmmmm scifi what?)

33. Dragonflight, by Anne McCaffrey (I think I read maybe three of these?)

34. The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress, by Robert Heinlein

35. A Canticle For Leibowitz, by Walter M. Miller

36. The Time Machine, by H.G. Wells

37. 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea, by Jules Verne

38. Flowers For Algernon, by Daniel Keys (I wouldn’t have pegged this as scifi, but it was really good)

39. The War Of The Worlds, by H.G. Wells

40. The Chronicles Of Amber, by Roger Zelazny (I tried this one, it just didn’t suit me)

41. The Belgariad, by David Eddings

42. The Mists Of Avalon, by Marion Zimmer Bradley

43. The Mistborn Series, by Brandon Sanderson

44. Ringworld, by Larry Niven

45. The Left Hand Of Darkness, by Ursula K. LeGuin

46. The Silmarillion, by J.R.R. Tolkien (was this really worth reading? I did the trilogy plus the hobbit multiple multiple times, but maybe I need to add this to my list . . . )

47. The Once And Future King, by T.H. White (literally at least forty times – one of my fave books growing up)

48. Neverwhere, by Neil Gaiman

49. Childhood’s End, by Arthur C. Clarke

50. Contact, by Carl Sagan

51. The Hyperion Cantos, by Dan Simmons

52. Stardust, by Neil Gaiman

53. Cryptonomicon, by Neal Stephenson

54. World War Z, by Max Brooks

55. The Last Unicorn, by Peter S. Beagle (this was one of my favorite movies as a kid; if I read the book, is it going to ruin the film???)

56. The Forever War, by Joe Haldeman

57. Small Gods, by Terry Pratchett

58. The Chronicles Of Thomas Covenant, The Unbeliever, by Stephen R. Donaldson

59. The Vorkosigan Saga, by Lois McMaster Bujold

60. Going Postal, by Terry Pratchett

61. The Mote In God’s Eye, by Larry Niven & Jerry Pournelle (I just started this and it’s not clicking for me)

62. The Sword Of Truth, by Terry Goodkind

63. The Road, by Cormac McCarthy

64. Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell, by Susanna Clarke

65. I Am Legend, by Richard Matheson

66. The Riftwar Saga, by Raymond E. Feist

67. The Shannara Trilogy, by Terry Brooks (started this and hated it; thought it was a poor woman’s Tolkien)

68. The Conan The Barbarian Series, by R.E. Howard

69. The Farseer Trilogy, by Robin Hobb

70. The Time Traveler’s Wife, by Audrey Niffenegger (ummmmm this is a romance novel and I love it, but scifi? huh?)

71. The Way Of Kings, by Brandon Sanderson

72. A Journey To The Center Of The Earth, by Jules Verne

73. The Legend Of Drizzt Series, by R.A. Salvatore

74. Old Man’s War, by John Scalzi

75. The Diamond Age, by Neil Stephenson

76. Rendezvous With Rama, by Arthur C. Clarke

77. The Kushiel’s Legacy Series, by Jacqueline Carey (oh come on.  historical fiction romance, not fantasy.)

78. The Dispossessed, by Ursula K. LeGuin

79. Something Wicked This Way Comes, by Ray Bradbury

80. Wicked, by Gregory Maguire

81. The Malazan Book Of The Fallen Series, by Steven Erikson

82. The Eyre Affair, by Jasper Fforde

83. The Culture Series, by Iain M. Banks

84. The Crystal Cave, by Mary Stewart

85. Anathem, by Neal Stephenson

86. The Codex Alera Series, by Jim Butcher

87. The Book Of The New Sun, by Gene Wolfe

88. The Thrawn Trilogy, by Timothy Zahn

89. The Outlander Series, by Diana Gabaldan

90. The Elric Saga, by Michael Moorcock

91. The Illustrated Man, by Ray Bradbury

92. Sunshine, by Robin McKinley (whoa. I love this book, but the top 100 novels? I don’t think so.)

93. A Fire Upon The Deep, by Vernor Vinge

94. The Caves Of Steel, by Isaac Asimov

95. The Mars Trilogy, by Kim Stanley Robinson

96. Lucifer’s Hammer, by Larry Niven & Jerry Pournelle

97. Doomsday Book, by Connie Willis

98. Perdido Street Station, by China Mieville

99. The Xanth Series, by Piers Anthony

100. The Space Trilogy, by C.S. Lewis


I can’t believe they didn’t list “Discworld” as an entry.  So I didn’t make it as far as “Small Gods”, so what? I did at least the first three . . .

Lots of people are pointing out that this list is kind of silly and sort of random. So what?  It gave me both blog content and ideas for books to put on my Kindle list, so I’m happy 🙂

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“Kayak” is not just a website

Posted by Lissa on August 29, 2011

Good morning everyone! Fed up by my feet problems and utter lack of exercise, I begged Mike to take me kayaking.

OH MY GOD MY ARMS AND CHEST MUSCLES ALMOST DID NOT SURVIVE THE TRIP. It was just an easy mile down to the bar and back, and several times I wondered if my upper body was going to give out before we got back. I took rather a lot of short breaks, letting Mike do more of the work. (well, the majority of the weight in our kayak was his, y’know? 🙂 )

It was beautiful on the river:


We saw some big fat black vultures, hawks, herons, cranes and lots of other birds. We also almost crashed into a fallen tree because I was busy looking at a turtle.


And we saw not a single alligator, hooray! (I did have Siguette along for gator-protection)

Happy Monday everyone!

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Conversation Snippet

Posted by Lissa on August 25, 2011

From our phone conversation last night…

LISSA: “Did you see? Joe Biden said something stupid and the White House is pretending it never happened.”

MIKE: “Yeah …. And in other shocking news, it’s Wednesday.”

Yes, I do sometimes moonlight as Captain Obvious. The uniform includes my maroon heeled boots. If you were wondering.

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Posted by Lissa on August 23, 2011

I needed those!!!!!


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Posted by Lissa on August 19, 2011

My pecan chocolate ganache is cooling in the fridge waiting to be garnished with flaky sea salt, my strawberry rhubarb pie is in the oven, we have filet mignon in the meat drawer and the makings of caprese salad and bruschetta and I already marinated the chicken for tomorrow night’s chicken Makhani. But … what will I do to entertain them??


Yeah. That’ll do. 🙂 🙂 🙂

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Do EMT’s get gun training?

Posted by Lissa on August 17, 2011

I was feeling rather ill at work last week and scurried back to my desk to get it under control. I carefully took some deep breaths and surreptitiously lowered my head as though digging for something in my purse. The feeling passed fairly quickly — last time I take vitamins on an empty stomach! — helped by the realization that if I keeled over I’d probably flash my thigh holster.

Even in my muzzy nauseated state it was somewhat of a comfort to me that my boss is a gunnie. If I ever DID get really sick, I know he could safely disarm me and stow Kevin while waiting for the EMTs.

Which begs the question of my post title.

This is Florida. While the vast majority of the population goes unarmed, there are still significant numbers of us who go about our daily business with the best self-defense hand-tool available.*

Do emergency medical personnel receive training in how to safely handle, make safe and stow firearms?

If not – why not?

(I’m hoping that TOTWTYTR will take the lead on this one, but anyone is welcome to chime in with their thoughts, medical professionals or not!)

*HAND-tool. The best tool period is still between your ears. Of course. 🙂

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A small ray of sunshine from London

Posted by Lissa on August 16, 2011

Mike sends this feel-good snippet of the day (subscriber only):

“They come to our shops,” one man told the London Daily Mail last week, “and we fight them with sticks.” When a gang invaded an upscale restaurant, threatening customers and demanding their valuables, the staff attacked them brandishing knives and drove them out.

Of course, the subtitle of the article — “In a civilized society, people would be allowed to defend themselves with guns, not baseball bats” — is both quite true and quite depressing. Still, we here at LookingForLissa celebrate those who defend themselves in spite of ridiculous limitations on the tools they can use to do so.

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I think the “Tea Party Downgrade” may cost me a dollar

Posted by Lissa on August 15, 2011

Because, you see, I bet Mike a dollar that “Tea Party Recession” was going to be the next big talking point.

Oh well. It’s sort of an open-ended bet, so I have some time to get the ABC or CBS talking heads to mention it. (We agreed that CNN anchors and anyone to the left of MSNBC doesn’t count, so David Axelrod gets me nothing.)

Anyone else want to play?

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Protected: The Story: Part III : The Ending … For now …

Posted by Lissa on August 11, 2011

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Bill Ray Nissan: Liars and Cheats!

Posted by Lissa on August 8, 2011


We were looking to replace Bernard (our old beloved Toyota Avalon, who thankfully is going to a good home and a loving family) and thus went Internet-browsing. (That is, Mike went Internet-browsing. He’s really good at this kind of stuff.). And a person from Bill Ray Nissan quoted us an AMAZING deal on a 2012 Altima. Amazing enough that we made an appointment to go in and see them and made sure to print out the email for proof.

Well, we get there, and right away we ask to go over the price and financing stuff; no point in browsing and test-driving if they’re trying to scam us. So the salesperson goes running off to check with the Financing Guy and he comes back with the terms of the deal.

Guess what? The price they quoted us didn’t include the options already installed on the car, so it immediately jacked up the price three grand!!! And then, when we pointed out how utterly dishonest this was, they tried the following two defenses:

1) The guy who wrote the email is “new” and shouldn’t have written it that way;
2) Yes, it’s kind of misleading to quote the price that way, but everyone else does it so we have to do it too or our prices don’t compare.

Got that? We didn’t mean to lie, it was a mistake, but also we have to lie because everyone else does.

It was perhaps the most brazen, shameless and unabashedly dishonest snow job we’ve encountered. I was cynically disgusted; Mike was personally insulted. They then made a last-ditch attempt at a deal, promising us “$Xx,yyy which includes taxes and options and everything.” We agreed to look at the numbers. Then it turns out that their quoted figure was based on paying the entire balance in cash that day, which we TOLD them was not the case.

We walked. Obviously.

Isn’t it illegal to quote the price of a vehicle without including the factory-installed options?

Tell your friends, tell your family. DO NOT GO TO BILL RAY NISSAN. They will lie to you, try to steamroll you, bully you, and cheat you. Bastards!

P.S. We got a great deal on a sapphire-hued Camry. I’ve named him Betty Blue. I’m still sad they canceled The Unit.

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