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sensing and monitoring device, presenting an interdisciplinary view of new models and metaphors of reality . . . ” I say no. I say it is a $3.95 list. \(It is interesting to remember that the list as form has not always been so credible as it is in these days. Didn’t people used to try to put Real Time 1 is a list of some 110 books, agencies, labs, societies, magazines and other information sources. Mailing addresses are included. For each entry either Brockman or Rosenfeld has written about ten lines \(a review? essay? pinpoint in general the importance of that entry in the context of the others and in the context of something I think they would like to loosely define as “modern thought.” John Brockman has published two books, is young and fat with scientific interfaces, and is clearly educated up to his cowlick. Rosenfeld is about to publish The Book of Highs: 250 Ways to Alter Consciousness Without Drugs. Here and I thought what we were trying to do was regain consciousness! Most of the space in Real Time 1 is occupied by contextless excerpts from the entries. Anecdotes. A point of information. An abbreviated list of examples of the entries: Cage’s A Year From Monday which was, if you ask me, a terrible drag after Silence; Noam Chomsky’s “real” work, Aspects of the Theory of Syntax which I ran around LA looking for in 1969 because I was snookered out of my brain with conceit, and which finally satisfied me only because it had plain blue covers with beautiful blackass letters spelling out that powerfully intellectual name on there when I went to read it I found it full of taxonomic models and syntactically functioning units my desk and fled back to the television, where, I don’t mind telling you, I remained to this day \(proud and feeling good for having that wiry slim marvel in there on Intelligent Life in the Universe by Shklovskii and Carl Sagan which is a difficult hook, but one that looks like the real thing; John McHale’s The Future of the Future, again, a book I tried to get out of George Braziller prior to publication in 1969 with the fabrication that I was going to review it for some made-up magazine didn’t work, but I got the book, read it, New Scientist, a strange little British science journal which seems to keep up, albeit in the offhand manner characteristic of such other British “future oriented” magazines as AD \(which does not, incidently, make include Edward T. Hall’s The Hidden Dimension, Ben Lee Whorf’s Language, Thought and Reality, Watson’s The Double Helix: Being a Personal Account of The Discovery of The Structure of DNA, The Shape of Time, books by Dubos, Laing and Thomas S. Kuhn, Karl Jaspers and other heady folk. Ananda K. Coomaraswamy makes it while Madame Blavatsky goes unmentioned. Alvin Toffler \(dear God in highlights so far found, there is: There are at least four things wrong with this book. First, parading these other heavies around as content does not make them content, and it is pretentious as Christ himself. Second, we’ve heard of a lot of the books already, back in the night of the sixties when having heard of such was fashionable and at court. Third, it has been my \(typical, half-educated, Works as those listed in Real Time 1 are largely inaccessible in the sense of being extremely difficult to read, and impossible to grasp without having already input an incredible amount of background material which we have not, generally, input. Put in. Fourth, and finally, there is the problem that we desperately need a book sort of like this, only better. We need a book which is comprehensive and knowing and compassionate on the subject of the “leading edges” of sciences, systems and ideas, and we need a book which somehow brings these frontrunnings together in some way more illuminating than simple spacial togetherness on consecutive pages. We need an “interface” between us, and them. And such gimcracky as Real Time 1 doesn’t help our self-images on the one hand, and on the other, more important hand, does dead nothing for our understanding. The World Book of Houseplants Elvin McDonald New York: Popular Library, 1963 I have a few plants. A month ago I got this plant that looked like six sharpened broomsticks of olive green jutting out of a pot. It still looks like that. Now, I figure this is a terrific out-of-sight plant and I want to know what it is. I go to the bookstore. I look at maybe twenty, twenty-five books. No plant. So I figure my plant is rare \(the nursery had said it criterion for determining the quality and comprehensiveness of a plant book the inclusion of this here rare plant of mine. I look at more books. Books handsomely bound, books with poetry in them, books for twenty dollars, books of shrubs, flowering houseplants, ground cover. McCall’s Garden Book does not include my plant. Plants Are Like People never heard of such a plant. Other books too numerous to mention. . . . Finally I find Elvin McDonald’s book in a new dollar and a quarter paperback edition. I look on page 241. There it says “S. cylindrica, to 5 ft., from South Africa, has round, tapered, dark-green leaves; pink flowers.” I buy the book. I take it home. I show it to my wife, point at the place on the page with my finger. She says, “That’s our plant!” I nod. We look through the book and find all our other plants. Clear and concise instructions for watering, sunlight, foods. How to propagate. A steal. The Shorter Oxford English Dictionary On Historical Principles Prepared by William Little, H. W. Fowler, J. Coulson; revised and edited by C. T. Onions. London: Oxford University Press, 1933, and 1970. The worth of the Shorter OED cannot be measured in terms of numbers of entries. It can be measured in the following way: the Shorter OED has plenty of words and histories of words, contains much fine writing \(“The letter R, as resembling in and clothed in as pale a skyblue as you’d ever want to see, is supported by haughty scholarship, is easily readable in the sense of easy-on-the-eyes \(in contrast to the newer complete OED in two volumes plus over $36, to have an object about the house the quality of which is sublime and beyond discussion. Smokescreen Dick Francis New York: Harper & Row, 1973 I haven’t read it. But, Dick Francis has never given up a bad book. His suspense novels are all horse-related, and he is himself horse-related \(once a . champion knowledgeable, literate, probably short, funny looking \(his picture is in the February 5 issue of and very capable of handling the language remember the language? I submit Smokescreen will be terrific. Every reads Dick Francis. Old people read Dick Francis too, but that is not his fault. A new Dick Francis novel is better than anything makes one feel good \(no threat is involved, something in a Dick Francis book you did not know. Before Smokescreen, Francis has written and I have read Bonecrack, Rat Race, Enquiry, Three to Show \(three of the Forfeit, The Sport of Queens Blood Sport, Flying Finish, Odds Against. For Kicks, Nerve. February 16, 1973 23