'Lists are anti-democratic, discriminatory, elitist...

by tosca on Monday, May 3, 2010

..., and sometimes the print is too small.'
~ David Ives, 1950 - , American playwright.

It's Monday, which means this is my 'On the Shelf' post and is nothing more than a peek at what I'm reading right this minute. Not a romance novel, weirdly enough.

Title: The New Zealand Book of Lists
Author: John McCrystal & Steve Barnett
Publisher: Random House
Year: 2007

Synopsis: A compendium of curious and unusual New Zealand information, including odd, arcane, extraordinary and surprising facts and figures and the sort of who knew? trivia that fills rainy afternoons at the bach. Lists include: New Zealand towns with the most brothels, gangs, weird crimes, dinosaurs most New Zealanders never knew we had, Shortland Street conquests, famous animals, uses of sphagnum moss, pubs on a university pub crawl, most popular snogging spots and more. It's wacky, fun, and more than a little bit weird.

I don't think these lists match the quote at all - they for everybody and anyone and aren't the least bit elitist :) Some of them are strange, certainly. I'm still not convinced I need to know 113 Places in New Zealand Named for Scientists. One day it may come to me why I should but, until that day, give over, old son. Started this book today (although it sat on my desk for a couple of weeks) and am enjoying it. Why'd I put it off so long? Lack of colour pictures. A book this funny, quirky, oddball should come with colour illustrations. That's my only complaint. Do I have a favourite list? Not one. A few - couldn't help myself. Here's just one:

5 Kiwi Fashion Curiosities

  • The fold-over tie
  • Walk shorts
  • The beige tracksuit
  • Stubbies
  • Jandals and socks
I can't do this book justice but young Morgan, who works during the tertiary holidays at one of our branches, wrote a fantastic review which you can view on our website. Yeah. What he said!

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