Common Nonsense

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America’s favorite curmudgeon is at it again with his recent book of essays entitled Common Nonsense. The book was written over a period of five years, complied of 154 writings written in no particular order.

It covers a wide array of topics: Daily Life in America, Food & Drink, Heath and Doctors, Politics, Sports, Entertainment and the Arts, Learning, Work Life and Success, The Writing Life, Home Life, Animals, Travel, Big Issues, Progress, and People and Places. All treated with Rooney’s signature wit. So much so, you’ll hear him narrating as you read.

Although the essays are very good and the ideas pretty solid, there is a tendency to repeat thoughts from one essay to the next. Not every essay, but a few sound like rehashings of the one before it. I guess that happens when you compile 5 years of random thoughts into one book. At least it shows that Rooney is consistent with issues.

And, as always, Rooney isn’t afraid to mince words. He goes after just about everybody, including his bosses at CBS and 60 Minutes.

After reading this book, I definitely came away with a smile… and a little wiser to boot. I read it straight through in about two days… but you could also essay hop if you so desire. Everyone is a gem. It shows that Mr. Rooney is far from the retirement center.

Some select snippets from the book:

— You never see old men sitting in rocking chairs on their front porches whittling anymore. Rocking chairs, front porches and whittling all seem to have gone out of style. Old men, on the other hand, are all over the place.

— Everyday thousands of humans gather by the side of lakes and the oceans with poles or they go out in boats to catch fish. They have all sorts of expensive equipment but, more often than not, they fail to catch a fish. The pelicans must laugh.

I give Common Nonsense a 6 out of 6. It’s 350 pages of neat.

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Ryan is an artist / writer out of Melbourne, FL.

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