R  A  L  P H
  The Review of Arts, Literature, Philosophy and the Humanities

Volume XXXIV, Number 3

Very Early Spring 2003

RALPH'S Top Pop Hits
A compilation of fifteen reviews, articles,
and readings from the past eight years
that --- for no apparent reason ---
continue to receive the most hits.

My 'Dam Life
"The thing I have about celebrities is this:
I resent them. I am deeply jealous of them
in all sorts of appropriately fantastic ways
and yearn to be one, principally because
I would be better at it than many of them."

In Shackleton's Wake
"This is not a journey
to investigate the truth or fiction of
Shackleton's awful trek, but, instead,
a crude effort to play on the public's hunger
for yet another gimmicky adventure story
on the Nature Channel."

The First World War
"This writing style
is generated by a new, simple-minded software
called the Martin Gilbert. It is programmed
to instantly deliver history books in
the blandest English possible."

Great Reviews of the Past
Tim Powers' Declare
"A moment of Middle Eastern truth
in the style of Edward Fitzgerald,
or perhaps King James of Biblical fame,
When thine enemy extends his hand to thee,
cut it off if thou canst,
else kiss it."

Earth and Ashes:
The War in Afghanistan,
Roofing with Asphalt Shingles, and
Salt: A World History

The American Left: An Autopsy
Part I
"This explained their obsessive search
for extra-territorial idols: Ho Ho Ho Chi Minh,
or Mao, or Fidel, or Che. As the 1970s wore on,
this quest moved into ever more exotic realms,
reaching Kim Il Song, Enver Hoxha, and finally,
by the 1980s, the Sendero Luminoso."

Part II
"Overall, then, we arrive at a simple diagnosis:
the American Left is trapped in a classic
neurotic cycle. Politics as dress-up
leads to provocative behaviour which in turn
sabotages the very politics the Left presumably favors.
Hence the perpetual failure."

Two From Tom Weller
"Das Volkswagen" / "Something for Nothing"
"In a dank cavern that houses
the forge of the gods
lives the young hero Eggfried;
his brothers Siegfried, a dwarf,
Siegmund, a giant,
and Siegheil, a toad;
and their father and mother Siegar, a dragon,
and Siegarette, an end table."

Is it Hanged? Or Hung?
"If you don't want to go, Sean, don't go."
"Does anybody want to go to a wake, Jess?
Is it the sort of thing people enjoy?"

Two by Patti White
Medical Advice

"She said:
darlin', you know what it's like to be a woman.
The moon is always draggin' your body around,
and it seems like something is always wrong."

"I'm King Lear on the heath, crazy, cold with
despair; I rave; my clothes are shabby. With my kingdom
divided, there are no more decisions to make, and my mind
gets weak."

Bulemia and Anorexia
Milking Cows,
RALPH and Medycyna Praktyczna


A complete list of all books reviewed in RALPH,
arranged by title, including author, subject, and publisher,
plus a listing of all readings, articles and poems
that have appeared since 1994.

of our most notorious reviews
as collected in the hard-copy

Help perpetuate honest, noisy, pesky book reviews.
With your $25 subscription, you get
a free copy of one of the newest titles from
Mho & Mho Works

For our 10th Anniversary,
we'll be issuing a compendium of our
best reviews, articles, poems, and readings.
This is the Preface and Introduction
to the book that will be called
Rock Gardening in the Ukraine

For twenty years, our patient secretary
has kept order in RALPH's wretched offices.
However, due to the recent decline
of the DJIA, we may lose her.
Thoughts on how readers can help us ---
or more importantly her --- to survive.

T H E  F A C T S
Submitting Books
The best way to get books to RALPH for review.
Submitting Reviews
Suggestions for would-be reviewers --- and payment schedule.
RALPH didn't spring full-blown from the brows of the gods:
     We've been around (in different guises) for over twenty-five years.     
The Fessenden Fund
Describing the good works of RALPH's official godparent

Lolita Lark, Editor-In-Chief
Post Office Box 16719, San Diego CA 92176

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