I Am Not a Scienceman

February 26, 2015 § Leave a comment


I’m reading a book about science. Cor, s’bit bloody hard. It’s A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson, so it’s as layman as thermodynamics and half-lives and relativity can be. But my brain just doesn’t bend that way.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Bill Bryson is a genius with detail. Good grief, the facts on a page! The research that must have gone into this book is astounding. And you never feel pissed off with him because you know from The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid (which I just read) that he barely made it through grade school, used to wee in a jar on long car rides and was involved in Iowa’s biggest teen beer heist.

He’s got such a likeable style – he’s ripping everyone to shreds but doing it so pleasantly that you’d give him a finger of your Kit Kat without him even staring longingly at it. (I could learn a few things from him – hopefully I already am – about approachable prose. I’m so very AGGRESSIVE in my writing, why is that?) But anyway, Bill Bryson: king of chuckles and factoids, as well as sporter of beards and walker of hills.

What a guy.

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