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Random and inconsequential

August 25, 2014
I've been exploring some serious issues in the last few posts, so I thought I'd use this week's blog to address the random and inconsequential. Here goes...
  • Summer reading -- I know you're supposed to list your favorite summer books in May so you can take them on vacation with you, but here are a few that I'd recommend for the Dog Days and cool fall evenings:

Escape from Camp 14 - A harrowing, if not exactly beautifully written true storyEscape from Camp 13 (1)_ about one young man's attempt to escape a North Korean "re-education camp." I gained an all new appreciation of the freedoms we enjoy -- and so often take for granted -- and remain astonished that in the information age a small group of narrow-minded "leaders" can imprison an entire nation through brainwashing and propaganda.

TheBoysintheBoatThe Boys in the Boat - Wonderfully inspiring story (along the lines of "Sea Biscuit") about a group of rough and tumble college students from the University of Washington pursuing the gold medal in rowing against Hitler's "unbeatable Aryans" in the 1936 Olympics. A bit of a slow starter, but once it picks up momentum, you just can't put it down.

The Most Dangerous Man in America - This biography of Douglas MacArthur Mcarthur-- the first one I've read on this giant of 20th century history -- is an honest profile of the brilliance and flaws of one of the U.S.'s most decorated military men. The title of the book comes from the characterization of MacArthur by his boss -- and chief political rival -- Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

conspiracy of fools Conspiracy of Fools - This is one of several books on the collapse of Enron and provides a frightening portrayal of corporate greed and incompetence. You'll be rooting for the regulators after you finish this one...

  • Maybe the best summer treat ever...A friend and associate of mine sent the Alliance staff a box of chocolate-dipped key lime pie bars and if you like either or both of those ingredients, this is the dessert for you. I'm not talking about key-lime flavored ice cream dipped in a thin layer of chocolate flavored syrup; I'm talking about a slice of actual key lime pie, frozen solid and placed on stick, dipped in enough chocolate to make a Hershey’s bar. Want to try them? Here's the web site.
  • And finally...If you're planning on arriving in Austin a day early or staying an extra day, you might want to check out some of these "off the beaten path" restaurants selected by local chefs and their favorite places to eat...