Thursday, September 18, 2014

September 14: 4 Books

55. CPR for the Professional Rescuer by The American Red Cross

No, I did not take a CPR or EMT course...

Like most of the books that I plow through these days, I picked this one up at The Strand in Manhattan's Union Square. Published in 1993, this book did a good job of presenting an overview of EMS as a profession; the human body and how its workings pertain to mouth to mouth and CPR; and breathing and cardiac emergencies.

This book makes me want to take a CPR course. In the meantime, I hope I never have to use the techniques that I read about, and if God forbid I do, I hope I can remember what to do while under the extreme pressure and stress of an emergency situation.

56. The Mucusless Diet Healing System: Scientific Method of Eating Your Way to Health by Arnold Ehret

This is actually the book by Ehret that I wanted to reread the other day when I came across my copy of his other main work, Rational Fasting.

Ok, I know, I know -- it might seem to my readers like I am preoccupied with my bodily fluids. Indeed I am -- at least as they apply to my current state of health and how I can improve that state. I have lost 18 pounds since the beginning of the summer, and my intention is to lose another 15. In addition to eating a mostly vegan diet with meat every other day or so (this works best for my due to some ongoing food allergies that I won't go into here), I have been exercising a lot.

I noticed earlier in the summer that first thing in the morning, either my coffee or possibly the oatmeal that I was eating for breakfast 4 times a week was making me cough and occasionally giving me familiar food allergy-like slight asthma symptoms. Since then, I have wanted to get another copy of this book and reread about Ehret's diet consisting mainly of non-mucous-producing fruits and leafy green (non-carby) vegetables. I am sold now that this is something I want to incorporate into my own diet more and more going forward. To that extent, I have been snacking on apples with fresh almond butter and eating a lot of broccoli and other non-carby green veggies. I feel pretty amazing when I do...

57. Throw Out Fifty Things: Clear the Clutter, Find Your Life by Gail Blanke

This is a GREAT book on purging extra personal belongings from one's life. I cannot speak highly enough about this book, because it goes much further than the other one, It's All Too Much, also reviewed in this blog.

Unlike the other book previously reviewed, which focuses only on clearing physical clutter, extra personal belongings, things that haven't been used in over a year, etc., Throw Out Fifty Things goes further to suggest 9 other categories of emotional blockages and garbage that can be cleared / thrown away as well. This second section is the real treasure of this book.

Because a cluttered home can lead to a cluttered mind, and because a cluttered mind can in turn create a cluttered home, this book, in creating a system to eliminate all of that clutter, really resonates with my life right now. Alas, though I just read this book 4 days ago as I am typing this, I am FAR FAR FAR from really implementing this knowledge, very far from changing my own life as quickly or as positively as I would hope. However, I am definitely making progress...

58. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

I was having dinner with my good friend Alan earlier tonight and we got to talking about some of the great works of literature. A huge Dickens fan, Alan was saying that compared to A Tale of Two Cities or the like, he could never understand all of the hubbub over a book like The Great Gatsby.

In a wonderful case of serendipity, after I walked Alan to the Union Square 6 train, I bopped back to The Strand and found, among other things, a used copy of that very book outside for $1.

I read the first half to 2/3 of this book on the train ride home (it's a short book) and finished the remainder after a nice phone conversation with my good friend Twyla, who loves this book. I have to say, for the first 2/3 of the book, I was completely in agreement with Alan. And then , once I got to the car accident and all of the shit hitting the fan after that, I have to say that I can see why people think so highly of this book. The writing is solid, and the story is engaging, most importantly with deep character development. I wouldn't mind discussing this book at some point with someone who has studied it in a literature course, so I can learn a bit more about what other people think of this work.

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