Audience participation time. First, take off your clothes…

The hot steaming train thrust its way into the dark tunnel
and delivered its squirming payload.
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I don’t read enough. Books that is.

Before I developed a blogging-monkey on my back, I used to read a lot of books. One might say I have read a whole library full of books, however I prefer the more colorful and accurate: “I have read a shitload of books“. But these days, not so much. And while the habit of book reading hibernates waiting for the prophesized Book Rapture (when God calls all the computers home), the habit of buying books just in case marches steadily onward. I have stacks of the unread sitting everywhere, teetering and threatening to crush the dogs (minus, of course, the ones that Beckham destroyed during a series of daring premptive strikes). So when time becomes available to get caught up a bit, I become overwhelmed by possibilities. Classic Americana (Frank Norris, Dos Passos, Saul Bellow)? Popular and current (Lethem, Murakami, Ishiguro, Ruiz Zafon)? Or guilty pleasure (Marley & Me). As you can tell I’m not much of a policy/history/economics wonk. So sue me.

Anyway this thursday I’m taking the train up to Santa Barbara to spend a long weekend with the delicious and dishy mrs tbogg (oh stop it, you smutty smutty people…) which means 5-6 hours each way with NO INTERNET. It also means 10+ hours of avoiding talking to strangers but I figure my Kill e’m All, Let Scott Stapp Sort’em Out t-shirt has that covered. Now I could take my laptop and write a book but I like keeping my mom on the edge of her seat, so I’m going to get some reading done instead. Eleven glorious hours in the iPod Cone of Silence with just me and a book. And maybe a sandwich. And a beverage. M&Ms are nice too…

This is where you come in. I have selected a small assortment of books to choose from and you (and the other dozen people who care) get to choose which one(s) I’m going to read on the choo-choo to the SBZ. How deliciously exciting! Listed alphabetically by author (or as one of my employees puts it, alphabeticalized):

Saul Bellow – The Dangling Man/The Adventures of Augie March
Jackson Benson – Wallace Stegner, His Life and Work
Albert Camus – The First Man
The Selected Stories of Philip K. Dick
Michael Frayn – Headlong
Philip Kerr – Dark Matter : The Private Life of Sir Isaac Newton: A Novel
Jonathan Lethem – Motherless Brooklyn
Haruki Murakami – Kafka On The Shore
Kem Nunn – Tijuana Straits
Philip Roth – The Plot Against America
Carlos Ruiz Zafon – The Shadow of the Wind
Writing Los Angeles – A Literary Anthology

You may place your vote in the comments (the timestamp…click the timestamp) and remember, only one vote per person, no substitutions and that includes An Army of Davids and Atlas Shrugged (I want to read, not giggle then sleep), in the case of a tie the longer books wins. Not valid in South Dakota. May cause erections lasting more than four hours, you dog you.

Voting ends Wednesday night, five-ish PST.

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