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A Guy's Moleskine Notebook

Thoughts and reflections on works of fiction and literature. Pondering of life through pictures and words. Babbling about gay rights. Travelogues and anecdotes.

  • [1] Annie Proulx: Brokeback Mountain
  • [2] Arthur Golden: Memoirs of a Geisha
  • [3] Yu Hua: To Live
  • [4] Alan Hollinghurst: The Line of Beauty
  • [5] Colm Toibin: The Master
  • [6] Carlos Ruiz Zafon: The Shadow of the Wind
  • [7] William James: The Varieties of Religious Experience
  • [8] Charles Higham: The Civilization of Angkor
  • [9] Graham Greene: A Burnt-Out Case
  • [10] Dai Sijie: Mr. Muo's Travelling Couch
  • [11] Alan Hollinghurst: The Swimming-Pool Library
  • [12] Mikhail Bulgakov: The Master and Margarita
  • [13] Colm Toibin: The Blackwater Lightship
  • [14] Alan Hollinghurst: The Folding Star
  • [15] Ross King: Michelangelo and the Pope's Ceiling
  • [16] Fyodor Dostoevsky: The Brothers Karamazov
  • [17] Jonathan Franzen: The Corrections
  • [18] Colm Toibin: The Story of the Night
  • [19] John Banville: Shroud
  • [20] Leo Tolstoy: Resurrection
  • [21] Peter Hessler: River Town, Two Years on the Yangtze
  • [22] Ian McEwan: The Atonement
  • [24] Gabriel Garcia Marquez: Love in the Time of Cholera
  • [25] Ignacio Padilla: Shadow without a Name
  • [26] Umberto Eco: The Name of the Rose
  • [27] Richard Russo: Straight Man
  • [28] Fyodor Dostoevsky: Notes from Underground
  • [29] Alan Hollinghurst: The Spell
  • [30] Hermann Broch: The Death of Virgil
  • [31] James Baldwin: Giovanni's Room
  • [32] Ken Kesey: One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest
  • [33] Xingjian Gao: One Man's Bible
  • [34] C. Jay Cox: Latter Days
  • [35] Harper Lee: To Kill A Mockingbird
  • [36] William Shakespeare: The Taming of the Shrew
  • [37] Daniel A. Helminiak: What The Bible Really Says about Homosexuality
  • [38] James Baldwin: Tell Me How Long the Train's Been Gone
  • [39] Kenji Yoshino: Covering - The Hidden Assault of Civil Rights
  • [40] Italo Calvino: If, On a Winter's Night A Traveler
  • [41] Arthur Phillips: The Egyptologist
  • [42] George Orwell: 1984
  • [43] Michael Warner: The Trouble with Normal: Sex, Politics, and Ethics of Queer Life
  • [44] Andrew Sullivan: Virtually Normal
  • [45] Henry James: The Wings of the Dove
  • [46] Jose Saramago: Blindness
  • [47] Umberto Eco: The Mysterious Flame of Queen Loana
  • [48] Dan Brown: Da Vinci Code
  • [49] Kazuo Ishiguro: Never Let Me Go
  • [50] Ken Follett: The Pillars of Earth
  • [51] Leo Tolstoy: War and Peace
  • [52] Michael Thomas Ford: Alec Baldwin Doesn't Like Me
  • [53] Jonathan Franzen: How To Be Alone
  • [54] Jonathan Lethem: The Fortress of Solitude
  • [55] Matthew Pearl: The Dante Club
  • [56] Zadie Smith: White Teeth
  • [57] Fyodor Dostoevsky: The Double
  • [58] Jose Saramago: The Double
  • [59] Andrew Holleran: Dancer from the Dance
  • [60] Heinrich von Kleist: The Marquise of O & Other Stories
  • [61] Andrew Holleran: In September, the Light Changes
  • [62] Tom Perrotta: Little Children
  • October 29, 2006


    More Random Thoughts on Hong Kong/Arriving Shinjuku, Tokyo

    Thank you all for your e-mail messages and comments. I miss all of you back home--you've been on my mind. I just checked into my hotel room in Shinjuku, one of the busiest neighborhoods in Tokyo, known for delicious soba (cold noodle), sushi and katsu don (deep fried pork chop over rice). Before I dive into sights and thoughts of Japan, I have to rewind and share some random thoughts in Hong Kong.

    My gaydar totally failed in Hong Kong. I was waiting in line for the bus that would take me to the Big Buddha in Po Lin Mnastery and standing behind me were a mixed group of ruggedly-looking, atheltic, bearish (meterosexual?) men who from time to time stole a glance or two at me. One of them, who had a close-fitting Armani Exchange t-shirt on and was clad in the trendy Keen sandals (which I bought myself a pair after seeing him wearing), was probably in his mid 30s, maybe 5'8", was smiling at me in a countenance as if he was going to buy me a drink at the bar. Anyway, we never talked, and I regretted not initiating a conversation. About half way through the bus ride, that group of guys got off and it turned out that they were reporting to their week-long shift at the Correctional Service facilities! Something about their profession and their interaction among themselves told me that none of them, not even the cute one with a rugged look, was gay. Oh well.

    I've been scouring bookstores for the last few days looking for a detailed street map of Tokyo. Hong Kong, in my opinion and impression, is not a readerly city, a fact that can be easily corroborated by the bestseller chart, which is usually dominated by DIY books, weight loss journals, and comics. I mean, the last time a work of fiction that topped the chart, was Da Vinci Code. So go figure. Maybe The Devil Wears Prada will stand a chance. Usually a work of fiction of literature will have its 2 days worth of glory on the chart if it is made into a motion picture. So no sooner you walk into a bookstore in Hong Kong (which is usually not bookish but more like an interior design salon) than you see a section called "Movie Tie-in". Anyway, I want to say there might be hope for the future generation as I have spotted more and more people browsing the literature section. I saw a guy reading Shopaholic--whose effort I compliment, although I would rather have him picked up a copy of Chekov's Short Stories, which exemplify precise, descriptive, and arresting prose. In the meantime, I'm still reading Heinrich von Kleist's The Marquise of O-- and Other Stories--a collection of intriguing works that with the psychological mysteries and covulution keep on reversing what I might have speculated about the outcome of the stories.

    I purchased a new digital camera--I know, you all might be craning your neck and waiting for my pictures--which I will post very soon. The new one is also a Canon, the ixus 900Ti, with 10.1 mega pixel resolution and a 3x optical lens. This one also is endowed with the picture-in-picture function and is upgraded to ISO 3200. I'll be taking lots of shots with the newbie in Japan, and yes, I promise the pictures of me in swimtrunks. LOL

    Stay tuned for more. Until next time, be well. By the way, I'm writing this post at the airport internet terminal while waiting for the shuttle bus.


    Blogger Jef said...

    Travel always brings with it the most captivating stories.

    10/31/2006 10:02 AM  
    Blogger matty said...

    I'm so jealous! I wish I could travel!!!!

    Have much fun and take many pictures!

    10/31/2006 6:16 PM  
    Blogger digital t-square said...

    Did episode (1) happen on the bus to Lan Tao? I think it was that bus line that drove past that prison on the way to Big Buddha.

    11/02/2006 2:47 AM  
    Blogger Matt said...

    Yep that was it! :)

    11/02/2006 3:11 AM  

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