If you’re just tuning in…

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I’ve gotten a lot of new blog followers over the summer and it dawns on me that sometimes the point of this blog isn’t clear.

So here goes:

I’m Bookshelf Q. Battler and this blog is Bookshelf Battle, a chronicle of my experiences as a world renowned poindexter, epic nerdventurer, reviewer of pop cultural happenings, champion yeti fighter, and most importantly, caretaker of a magic bookshelf.

Wow that’s a lot.  But wait. There’s more.

I’m not sure why, but my magic bookshelf tends to drag a lot of craziness into my life.

Is it the bookshelf’s fault? Is it just a coincidence? I don’t know.

At any rate, about a year into blogging I was notified by an alien dictator known as the Mighty Potentate that I am his chosen one.  The MP, you see, despises reality television and therefore believes I am the writer who will one day publish a novel so finely crafted that it convinces the masses to abandon all TV shows where cameras follow dullards around for no reason.

If I don’t put that novel out before I croak, the Mighty Potentate will conquer the earth.

Gotta be honest…that’s a lot of pressure.  I try not to think about it.

In the meantime, the Mighty Potentate has dispatched his second-in-command, Alien Jones, to watch over me, keep me safe, give me guidance and so forth.  He usually writes an “Ask the Alien” column where readers can ask him questions but he has been rather busy with his intergalactic duties this year.

I live in East Randomtown, USA, a terrible place full of dumb dummies.  I’m actually considered one of the town’s top citizens because I started a blog that attracts the attention of 3.5 readers. One of my readers is Aunt Gertie.

FYI – this blog never gets more than 3.5 readers.  I don’t understand it.

Regular columnists include:

  • “You Can’t Argue with Science” with Dr. Hugo Von Science
  • “Stop Sucking” with Motivational Speaker/Anti-Suck Expert Vinny Baggadouchio
  • Search Engine Optimized Poet
  • The Astounding Nerdstradamus
  • “Things That Really Frost My Ass” with Uncle Hardass
  • “Things I Worry About” with Lloyd Bunson, Professional Worrier

My archnemesis is the Yeti, an international war criminal/fuzzy monster hellbent on bringing down this blog because it is too interesting and yetis want the world to be boring.

I’m also at odds with Leo McKoy, town barfly who achieved great fame in East Randomtown when he delivered a sandwich to 1990s teen heartthrob James Van Der Beek.

McKoy is actually running against me for the position of East Randtomtown Mayor, a position I hold as our last mayor was devoured by zombies during a zombie apocalypse.

Last but not least, I live in BQB HQ with the two most valuable members of the BQB organization: my main squeeze, Video Game Rack Fighter, and my trusty philosopher pooch, Bookshelf Q. Battledog.

This year, I have been focusing on writing books, though my columnists stop in from time to time.

I review movies often.  Ironically, I rarely review a book anymore which sucks because, you know, you’d think I would given the blog’s title.  That was actually the initial point of the blog to begin with.

Meanwhile, my pop culture detective Jake Dashing continues to file reports on the most vexing questions circulating about the entertainment industry.  His love interest is my attorney, Delilah K. Donnelly, who thankfully lowers herself to advise me on legal and business issues surrounding my bloggery.

There you have it. If you are a new member of the 3.5 readers club, you are all caught up.

 

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RIP Gene Wilder

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A sad day in the comedy world, 3.5 readers, as actor/comedian Gene Wilder has passed away at age 83.

He had a long resume of hits but the ones that stand out to me are Young Frankenstein, Blazing Saddles, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, The Producers and two films where he paired up with comedian Richard Pryor in the 1980s – Stir Crazy and See No Evil, Hear No Evil.

I could go on all day long about all of these films.  In fact, the press has done a great job of that.

So instead I’ll expand a bit on See No Evil, Hear No Evil.  This was a 1989 comedy in which Pryor played a blind man named Wally and Wilder played a deaf man named Dave.

Together, they witness a murder.  Wally hears it.  Dave sees it.  A mixup leads the cops to think they did it, so they go on the run as a team with Dave being the eyes and Wally being the ears.

I remember seeing this as a kid and laughing a lot.

COP: Was there or wasn’t there a woman?

WILDER AS DAVE, BECAUSE HE’S DEAF: Fuzzy wuzzy was a woman?

What was your favorite Gene Wilder moment, 3.5 readers?

 

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200 Views Until my 50,000th view

Exciting news, 3.5 readers.

I’m 200 views away from this fine blog being viewed a whopping, an astounding, an awe-inspiring 50,000 times.

Even more amazing is the fact that 49,000 of those views were provided by my beloved Aunt Gertie, seen below:

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Do People Still Use Checks?

I saw someone write out a check at a grocery store the other day.

She had the checkbook. The pen.  She wrote it all out by hand, the whole nine yards.

I mean, I’m old enough to remember a time when people did this regularly and this was a common sight.

But its been years since I’ve seen someone do it.

I was surprised.  In my mind, I was all like, “Damn lady, are you some kind of cave woman? Do you write memos on stone tablets using a hammer and chisel? Are you about to get into your Flintsones mobile and run the thing away with your feet?”

And she wasn’t an old lady or anything. She was fairly young.

Anyway, that is where technology is at.  Someone used a check and I nearly plotzed.

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Go Topless Day

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Happy Sunday 3.5 readers.

Fun fact: today is International Go Topless Day.

I’m not sure I should link to information about this holiday because that would warp your degenerate minds.

Needless to say, there are women who believe it is discriminatory that men get to walk around topless and they don’t. So they have parades and events and stuff where they let their fun bags fly free.

Ehh…of all the causes out there I’m not sure there’s a whole lot of opposition.  I don’t think you’ll find a lot of men saying, “No!  No I do not want to see those boobs!  Cover up those boobs!”

Although personally as a man, I can tell you that we men often view easily viewed boobs as some sort of trap, kind of like Lucy holding the football only to yank it away and laugh when Charlie Brown runs up to kick it.

I assume (though don’t get mad at me if you think this is assumption is wrong because I don’t I’m just talking at random here) there are probably some women who’d whip the ole sweater cannons out only to be all like “How dare you stare at my sweater cannons?!” if a man stares at them.

Am I in favor of this holiday? Well, sure. I don’t mind free range boobs.  I’d probably still sneak glances because like I said, typically seeing boobs requires copious amounts of effort so when they’re easily seen my mind is trained to think something’s up, but at any rate if adult women want to let it all hang out, they won’t get any argument from me.

Then again, I can also see the argument many might have that this is a slippery slope.  Should men be allowed to let their junk hang out?  Should we all be able to go pantsless and let our cheeks flap in the breeze?

Maybe we should. Maybe thats how we were made. Maybe we should all revert to Garden of Eden pre-Eve apple munch days when we were all innocent and frolicked in the sun in our birthday suits.

Then again, clothes do serve a purpose.  They keep us warm.  They keep us from leaving skid marks on publicly used seats.  They keep us from getting our germs all over supermarket produce. I’m not sure how that works.  Germs leap off your butt and onto the cucumbers.  For a better explanation, you’ll have to conduct noted scientist Dr. Hugo Von Science.

Heck, clothes probably even keep our junk from getting slammed in car doors more than we realize.

And there are probably some people who might get offended by the boobs.  Maybe they’re trying to take their kids for a walk and don’t want to cover their eyes the whole time.  Maybe there are enough boobs in Congress already that we have to see on the news 24/7.

Perhaps we could limit free range hooters to nude beaches.  Getting some sun on those things is the only real reason to turn them loose outside anyway, right?

Oh but then again if you limit it to certain beaches then that would be like creating boob internment camps right?  Never again, man. Never again.

And finally, I consider myself a philosopher.  During my many years of Shaolin training, my master used to ask me, “If a tree falls in the forest and no one is around to see it, does it make a sound?”

That’s a question designed to train the mind to tackle complexity.  Very hard to answer.

Similarly, if boobs are hanging out, but men don’t stare at them because they don’t want to get arrested for First Degree Boob Staring, then were the boobs ever out to begin with?

I don’t know 3.5 readers. ‘Tis a question for the ages.

Women, if you’re celebrating this day, enjoy.

Men, don’t stare. It’s a trap.

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Movie Review – Don’t Breathe (2016)

Crime doesn’t pay, kids.

No joke.  An old ass man might literally chase you around his house for two hours if you try to steal his pay.

BQB here with a review of the horror thriller, Don’t Breathe.

Its ok 3.5 readers.  You can breathe.  But the SPOILERS might leave you breathless.

God I’m such a hack.

Rocky, Alex and Money (Jane Levy, Dylan Minnette and Daniel Zovatto, respectively) are a trio of teenage house robbers.

Their latest target is an elderly blind man, a war veteran rumored to have a ton of cash stashed in his house.

Seems like an easy enough job but…nope…for a blind man this guy sure has some deadly ass skills and the kids end up taking on a lot more than they bargained for.

I can’t tell you much more than that or else I risk blowing the whole movie for you.

In some ways, its a standard horror movie. A lot of “Oh no! Don’t go in there!” and so on.

But, there is some originality in that the baddie is blind.  There’s a lot of skulking about the dark, scenes shot in night vision as the kids move inches away from their opponent without him realizing and so on.

Jane Levy might be the breakout star here.  She looks and sounds a lot like 1990s in her prime Reese Witherspoon, at least in my opinion anyway.

Stephen lang is scary as shit as “the blind man.”  Lang often plays military men, the two that come to mind being the roles he played in Avatar and Terra Nova.

PRO:  Some scary moments, shocks, surprises.

CON:  More brutality on screen than I’d like to see.  I prefer on-screen violence to be cartoonish and unlikely, rather than to see people being pummeled (which sadly, happens too often in real life.)

Oh, and uh…there was one part where it sort of jumps the shark. I don’t want to give it away but I found myself blurting out, “Oh come on!”

Add me to the list of worst moviegoers. I’m a spontaneous blurter.

STATUS: Shelf-worthy

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BQB’s Favorite YouTubers – QPark

Hey 3.5 readers.

I don’t think this guy has a lot of heat on him yet compared to the other YouTubers I’ve been talking about, but he deserves some.

Very short videos that deliver maximum funny punch for the masses with short attention spans, perfect for tweeting out, sharing on Facebook or what have you.

For example, “When You Look Up Your Symptoms Online.”

Yup.  I’ve been known to suffer a mild affliction only to look it up online and become convinced I have Ebola too.  Good one, QPark.

But what if someone invades your personal space?

Or worse, what if a dude completely violates years of firmly established dude law and uses the urinal directly next to you when there are many other urinals available?

Or how about when someone asks you how your diet is going and you lie and tell them its going great even when you’ve been shoving all kinds of junk food down your pie hole?

It took me a second to figure out what he was doing with the powder and the credit card until I finally realized he was snorting Kool Aid mix as if it were cocaine.  Sigh.  We’ve all chased that fruity flavored dragon before, haven’t we 3.5 readers?

Plus, the juxtaposition of the song from 2000’s Requiem for a Dream (a Darren Aronofsky directed film about drug addiction) with a scene of QPark injecting himself with chocolate sauce tells me this guy knows his pop culture.

Finally, out of all of QPark’s vids, this last one is the one that left me in tears.

Have you ever pooped in a public toilet, had the water splash your butt, and then have that little alarm go off in your head where you start to worry about all the germs that just touched your butt?

I have.  I can’t say that I’ve ever asked a friend to put on goggles and go at my butt with a blowtorch, but public toilet water splashes are still a concern that the media never talks about.

Thanks for raising awareness, QPark.

Keep an eye on this dude, 3.5 readers. He’s going places.

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I Regret Not Starting a Blog Earlier

1371251154I have to say, since I started this blog in 2014, it has been one of few activities I have participated in where the more I work at it, the more I get out of it.

Every week I get more followers.  Those followers stack up over time.  I still don’t get as many views and/or visitors as I’d like, though those figures have increased each year though, leaving me hopeful that they’ll actually reach a high point.

Keeping my fingers crossed.

I don’t recall when I first heard of the term “blogging.”

Had to have been somewhere in the mid-2000s.

It just seemed dumb.

I figured that publications that had a large print following would essentially use their money to take over online.

And to an extent they did but I never realized what opportunities there were for writers to go it alone.

Ergo, I often wonder had I got into blogging say, a decade ago, perhaps I’d have 300,500 readers instead of 3.5 readers.

Oh well.  “If I could turn back time” as Cher has been known to sing in her leather underpants.

Honestly though, and there are more seasoned experts who can correct me but, I’m not sure any of this really became that viable until social media came about, allowing bloggers to post links to their blogs using hashtags of subjects they are interested in or that their posts pertain to.

I hate to admit it because unfortunately I’m one of those people who feels the need to view myself as having the biggest brain in the room, but I never really imagined that social media was going to turn into anything important when it came out.

“Huh” I thought when I first got onto Facebook.  A site that lets everyone discuss their thoughts…and everyone I know has very dumb thoughts…and they all insist on sharing them 24/7.

“I picked my nose!”  #nosecandy

“I ate a tuna fish sandwich for lunch!” #straightuptunason

“My political views are ultimately superior to yours, moron!” #politickinglikeamofo

Long story short, I didn’t get into any of this until 2014.

Would that I could take Doc’s DeLorean to say, I dunno, 2006?  That’s the year Twitter started.  And when YouTube started I believe.  Had I been up to this for ten years I like to think I’d actually be somewhere that involves getting paid for blogging but…oh well, then again, I don’t like to think about things I can’t change.

Don’t even get me started on YouTube.  Being able to buy everything you need to start your own web show at Best Buy?

Sorry, I dated myself.  Being able to buy everything you need to start your own web show on Amazon?

(You whippersnappers still use Amazon, right? )

In summation, budding young artists, creatives, writers, actors, comedians, singers, musicians or what have you literally have no idea, no idea whatsoever how lucky they have it to have all this technology at their fingertips.

Build your audience, 3.5 readers.  Because when I was your age, if you wanted to make it in a creative field, you had to walk twenty miles up a hill just to kiss the ass of the guy who knows the guy who knows a guy who knows a guy who knows a guy whose cousin’s sister’s uncle’s cousin’s neighbor’s boyfriend’s cat trainer’s donkey pharmacist might, just might know a guy who could introduce you to the guy whose ass you need to kiss just to get an interview with the guy who might be able to help you get your foot in the door.

That’s a whole lot of ass kissing.  A proud man like me just isn’t down for it.

Enjoy the new world, 3.5.  There’s never been a better time to be a creative person.

Except for maybe the Renaissance.  If you lived in Europe you were able to paint pictures of chubby chicks…but even then only 3.5 people ever saw those paintings.

Whoa. I’ve come full circle.

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Search Engine Optimized Poet – Why Did the Chicken Cross the Road?

:::Bongo Drum Beats:::

Hey there all you hep cats and hep kittens. Come on down to the East Randomtown Java Bean, where the poets always stink and the cups are never clean.

Next on the mic is the one and only Search Engine Optimized Poet…the only rhyme-smith whose beats bring in the Googler’s feets, ya dig?

Chicken! Whoa, chicken!

Why oh why did you cross the road?

Was it to get to the other side?

Or was it to carry a load…

…of eggs.  Your tiny chicken kids.

Soft drink cups come with plastic lids.up-korora-beatnik-800px

Bids.  Its what eBay takes.

Whether you want to bid on old custom cars or a pile of used rakes.

Fakes? Most celebrities are.

I think I’ll head out to the nearest sports bar.

I’m going to order a burrito, a mojito and avoid getting bitten by a mosquito, duh!

Because after all, the zika virus is in Florida.

Home of Disneyworld.

This blog is my outlet to let my poetry go unfurled.

Can it ever be re-furled?

I prefer my cheese to be curled.

Cheese! It is my very favorite snack.

I carry a fifty pound sack of it on my back.

For cheddar in my diet is a staple that I lack.

Crack? Its in your butt or the sidewalk.

What is the chicken doing now?

I don’t know.

That feathery schmuck won’t talk.

 

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A Note on Helen of Troy: History’s Hottest Chick

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Hey 3.5 readers.

So, how the heck I find myself writing this story?

It all happened really fast.

Tuesday, I was perusing some books when I came across a novel set during the time of Ancient Greece about Helen of Troy falling in love with a warrior.

I didn’t read it but I started to become curious about Good Ole Hotpants Helen.

I’d seen movies and/or read about her before.  The most prominent movie I can remember is 2004’s Troy.

So I looked up some information about her. I found some scholarly articles written about her, how she was born, how she was kidnapped or possibly fell in love with another dude and was taken or went voluntarily to Troy, depending on whose side you believe, thus resulting in the ten year long Trojan War.

Apparently, I’m an old hat at this now because as I began reading, I started writing jokes in my head:

  • Helen was conceived when Leda had sex with Zeus, who’d taken the form of a swan. That right there.  I came up with a million swan fucker jokes.
  • She was so beautiful that men constantly fought over her and one of the most famous examples was that two old kings kidnapped her because they wanted to do the bom chicka wow wow with her just to experience being with a hot chick before they died from old age.  Thus, the “crusty old fuck” jokes started rolling in.
  • Castor and Pollux, aka “the Dioscuri” aka  Helen’s brothers, had to rescue her from the elderly kings.  Immediately, I turn it into, “Geez, these two poor schmucks have been saddled with having to rescue their super hot sister from a different pervert every week.”
  • Fun fact – all these years I never knew the villains in Face/Off, my favorite 90s action movie, were named Castor and Pollux Troy after Helen’s bros.
  • And that’s just the surface.  Ancient Greek history is a veritable cornucopia of sex, murder, and absurdity, rife for a comedian to exploit.

Now, here’s the thing.

I have put way too much work into my Zombie Western books.

So I absolutely will not abandon them at this point.

An idea for a funny book about Helen of Troy, told through modern language, popped into my head.

Wednesday night I wrote two chapters then went to bed.

Thursday morning I woke up, read what I wrote, and I don’t mean to toot my own horn, but I peed my pants laughing.

That’s big for me because I am always very harsh on my own writing.  But laughter is honest.  Laughter never lies.  As I read those two chapters, I couldn’t stop laughing.

I’m going to get back to Zombie Western and see that through.  My feeling is that maybe once a week I’ll write a chapter of Helen of Troy just to see if I can keep it going.

The story of the Trojan War is long, detailed and has like ten zillion characters.  It would be a challenge to keep the comedy going throughout.  Not sure I can do it but the first couple chapters have led me to believe it is worth a try.

But at any rate I won’t be quitting Zombie Western as I have put way too much work into that to hang it up now.

And what I have learned is no matter how tired you get, how busy you get, you do need to keep coming back to the story you are writing again, and again, and again because if you go away from it for too long then you’ll never come back.

So fear not.  Zombie Western will continue.  Not sure about the future of Helen of Troy yet but if it continues to be this funny I don’t think I can stop.  But I think I have the discipline now to keep coming back to write two stories at once.

The key is that you keep coming back.  Like anything difficult in life, if you keep coming back to work on it, it will eventually get done.  Maybe not as soon as you’d like but it does get done.

Tell me what you think and be honest, 3.5 readers.

The story of Helen of Troy, told through modern language.  Yay or nay?

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