December 16, 2011
BRUCE A. BRENNAN BLOG FROM THE WORLD AND MY MIND
The news as I see it and the views as I want them.
December 16 is … National Chocolate Covered Anything Day
Whoever came up with this day should be President. It likely will not be Sam Hurd, the former NIU star and future former Chicago Bear.
Some time ago, I wrote about Christopher Hitchens, the writer and devout atheist, when he was diagnosed with cancer in 2010. I wrote how he should hurry up and die. He did. Christopher Hitchens died Thursday in Houston. He was 62. The legendary writer was diagnosed with esophageal cancer in 2010. Even after being diagnosed with cancer of the esophagus in 2010, Hitchens refused to turn to a deity or organized religion for comfort. He made it clear that if anyone ever claimed he had converted at the end of his life, it would be either a lie propagated by the religious community or an effect of the cancer and treatment that made him no longer himself.
Forty-one states have casinos, according to the "American Casino Guide," and 43 have lotteries. Governor Milquetoast, the smartest man in the state, just ask him, says he knows this is not a good idea. Majority rule be damned, he knows what is best for us. He thinks it is best to just steal citizens money as taxes rather than allow the citizen a chance to gamble, make money and still pay taxes.
I have been reading a book that was published in September of this year. It is RIN TIN TIN, THE LIFE AND THE LEGEND by Susan Orlean. It is a fascinating story; the story behind the story.
He believed the dog was immortal.
So begins Susan Orlean’s sweeping, powerfully moving account of Rin Tin Tin’s journey from orphaned puppy to movie star and international icon. Orlean, a staff writer at The New Yorker who has been hailed as “a national treasure” by The Washington Post, spent nearly ten years researching and reporting her most captivating book to date: the story of a dog that was born in 1918 and never died.
It begins on a battlefield in France during World War I, when a young American soldier, Lee Duncan, discovered a newborn German shepherd in the ruins of a bombed-out dog kennel. To Duncan, who came of age in an orphanage, the dog’s survival was a miracle. He saw something in Rin Tin Tin that he felt compelled to share with the world. Duncan brought Rinty home to California, where the dog’s athleticism and acting ability drew the attention of Warner Bros. Over the next ten years, Rinty starred in twenty-three blockbuster silent films that saved the studio from bankruptcy and made him the most famous dog in the world. At the height of his popularity, Rin Tin Tin was Hollywood’s number one box office star.
During the decades that followed, Rinty and his descendants rose and fell with the times, making a tumultuous journey from silent films to talkies, from black-and-white to color, from radio programs to one of the most popular television shows of the baby boom era, The Adventures of Rin-Tin-Tin. The canine hero’s legacy was cemented by Duncan and a small group of others—including Bert Leonard, the producer of the TV series, and Daphne Hereford, the owner of the current Rin Tin Tin—who have dedicated their lives to making sure the dog’s legend will never die.
At its core, Rin Tin Tin is a poignant exploration of the enduring bond between humans and animals. It is also a richly textured history of twentieth-century entertainment and entrepreneurship. It spans ninety years and explores everything from the shift in status of dogs from working farmhands to beloved family members, from the birth of obedience training to the evolution of dog breeding, from the rise of Hollywood to the past and present of dogs in war. Filled with humor and heart and moments that will move you to tears, Susan Orlean’s first original book since The Orchid Thief is an irresistible blend of history, human interest, and masterful storytelling—a dazzling celebration of a great American dog by one of our most gifted writers.
This is an excellent book that will become a family classic, with parents telling children and grandparents telling grandchildren. Give it a read. You can still buy it before Christmas.
Just a couple of thoughts I had and you should too or at least think about.
BRUCE A. BRENNAN
DEKALB, IL 60115
VISIT ANY OF THE SITES LISTED FOR REVIEW, RESEARCH, ORDERING MY WRITING PRODUCTS OR TO CONTACT ME.
Go to web sites below to buy books by Bruce A. Brennan. It is still a good time to purchase any of my books. The books are interesting and inexpensive reads. My third book is available. It makes a great Christmas present. More information will be forthcoming about my fourth book currently under construction.
www.barnesandnoble.com (do a quick search, Title, my name)
www.smashwords.com Do a Title or author search.
Holmes the Ripper
A Revengeful Mix of Short Fiction