Ex Libris Kirkland

Ex Libris Kirkland is my entirely self-centered way to keep track of what I read, what I like, and what I want to remember.


Recently Quoted

  • Today's varmint hunters owe a great debt of gratitude to the woodchuck, or is the animal on which the sport of varmint hunting was founded. Starting with the "pest guns" of the early days, the woodchuck has been what could be termed the official unit of measure for cartridge and rifle development. It is also what helped define this type of hunting as a distinct and separate shooting sport and elevate it to its present sophisticated and high-tech status. Today it remains the most popular of all varmints, and despite all of the attention it has received over the years, still one of the most abundant.

    an excerpt from The Ultimate Guide to Small Game and Varmint Hunting, written by H. Lea Lawrence in 2002

  • It was explained earlier that changing agricultural practices have caused a shifting of rabbit populations to new habitat areas. Because of this, hunters should no longer depend on finding them in what were once obvious places.

    The cottontails have changed, so you must do the same.

    an excerpt from The Ultimate Guide to Small Game and Varmint Hunting, written by H. Lea Lawrence in 2002

  • Walking up rabbits can be a solo endeavor or one shared by several people, but in either situation, one thing is extremely important:

    Move s-1-o-w-1-y!

    Rabbits are by nature very nervous creatures, and this characteristic can be used to great advantage by hunters.

    The secret lies in patience. Rabbits will sit tight in cover and let hunters walk past them pretty closely as long as they keep moving. They think they'te safe, so they don't budge.

    The way to play on their nerves is to build tension. Take three slow steps, then stop and remain still for 20 or 30 seconds. This causes them to suspect they've been detected, and once they get fidgety, they're going to flush and make a dash for freedom.

    This also works well for the hunter, because you're anticipating the rabbit's move instead of being surprised when it bursts out. This slow stop-and-go strategy works well in all kinds of cover that can be easily walked through.

    an excerpt from The Ultimate Guide to Small Game and Varmint Hunting, written by H. Lea Lawrence in 2002

Recently Noted

  • I have no intention of hunting small game, but Erika and I have been talking about catching and eating rabbits all during quarantine - of course not doing it, just talking. So I saw this book at the library!

    It's actually - really informative and interesting, and kind of hilarious in parts. But I think mostly I still think the word 'varmint' is funny.

    an note about The Ultimate Guide to Small Game and Varmint Hunting, written by H. Lea Lawrence in 2002

  • EK thought the ending was unearned, not in keeping with the rest of the book. And while it does feel very deux ex machina, I think there's something great about the revelation that there were concerned, kind strangers out on the road, and the Man's fierce protection / defensiveness / rugged individualism was actually keeping them from finding the other 'good guys'.

    And of course that's a universal coming-of-age moment, 'maybe my parents weren't right about everything', but it's I think a really masterful way to end the book.

    The book is so concerned with generational transfer: the man protects the boy, sheltering him and protecting him (even in the face of certain death, sooner or later), teaching him a strict survival ethic, the notion of carrying the fire. But as the Man sickens, you see the Boy take on more responsibility but also his ethics push back and expand. The man is so concerned with protecting the boy that he doesn't, can't reach out and expand that protection to others: we can't, we'll starve, we'll die, etc - but the boy knows that they should. And when the man does finally die, the boy finds that there are others, that they have been nearby, and they CAN afford to seek out others and protect them. The man's extremely western, manly protection is what kept them from finding some larger, safer community. It's quite a reversion and undermining of the story.

    And for all that, all that rugged violent 'carrying the fire' still totally rings true! It's so convincing! All the way until the end the reader is confronted with the questions of: could I do that? would I do that? For me there is no ring of this story just being post-apocalypse disaster fantasy that every prepper dreams of, that allows them get out their guns and break open the canned beans. It doesn't feel that way at all, it feels true and horrible and oppressive.

    an note about The Road, written by Cormac McCarthy in 2007

  • A second reading, this time in print rather than the emotionally-battering audio version I listened to last time. Still unrelentingly grim, still beautiful.

    an note about The Road, written by Cormac McCarthy in 2007

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Ex Libris Kirkland is a super-self-absorbed reading journal made by Matt Kirkland. Copyright © 2001 - .
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