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a review of books we have not read:

War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy
Reviewed by Phillipa Panshi

At over 1400 pages, this book, along with the Bible which you can steal from any church, probably represents the greatest value in the history of literature.  Nowadays you can get it for 12 dollars which comes out to less than a penny per page.  There’s no way in hell that I was ever going to read it because, well, it’s too damn long.   The movie is probably 4 hours long itself.  Yesterday I was actually on my way to a bookstore to go research the book when I got pulled over by a police officer because my registration had apparently expired.  I drive a Tango Red Pearl colored Honda CRV.  It’s not the hybrid one though.  I got it used two years ago and it drives really well.  I keep it pretty clean.  I might want to sell it in a year or two and get a hybrid.

Anyway, I thought that the police officer had followed me from my house, where he might have seen me take a nip or two from the half-empty/half-full bottle of Absolut I keep in my freezer. It was a good thing that I had put my robe on.   It was part of my New Year’s resolution to develop some resolve and stick-to-it-iveness.  I’d been nipping from that particular bottle for about two weeks. It never occurred to me that he’d have to be staring into my kitchen window in order to see this, but police officers are tricky.  They have robots working for them now.  But he only gave me a warning and I told him that I’d get on the registration thing right away, at which point I turned back around, went home, and watched some TV. 

I watched an old episode of Magnum P.I., the one where Magnum shoots that blinking Vietnamese guy at the end right after he tells him: “nobody’s that fast”.  Well, I can’t remember the exact quote or if he told him that before he shot him but that’s how I remember it.  You probably remember that episode too.  But I’m not here to write about Magnum P.I. or how the three main characters (Magnum, T.C., and Rick) represent the three types of appeals (ethos, pathos, logos) found in Aristotle’s poetics.  War and Peace probably has characters and themes that represent them also but I didn’t read it.  I suppose instead of watching Magnum P.I. that I could have gone to the bookstore and read the first couple of pages of War and Peace to get some ideas about what to write. 

Reading the first couple pages isn’t the same as reading the book so I could still get away with writing my review.  I did read parts of Anna Karenina a long time ago.  That’s a good name for a female character.  It’s like the female version of Huckleberry Finn, which is another book I haven’t read.  Okay, I’m lying about watching Magnum P.I. I was actually looking at porn on my computer.  Women look at porn too.  I’ve always been a tomboy so no one should find it unusual.  I actually like to look at the lesbian porn even though I’m not a lesbian.  The non-lesbian porn is just not as pretty and it doesn’t even turn me on.  I guess because the men in the movies are so damn ugly and their cocks look grotesque and disgusting to me.  I don’t even know what to call them anymore.  I think in most porn movies now they say “cock”.  But I’ve heard “dick” too.  One time I heard a Russian sounding porn “star” say “fook me wit dat liarge penius”.  Maybe they had a problem with the translation.  But it’s interesting that what I lied about was watching Magnum P.I.  I mean Tom Selleck is still pretty hot for an old guy.  And I don’t think I was thinking about a foursome even though I mentioned Rick and TC.  But I did end the lie with Anna Karenina.  She’s a girl.  And that name just sounds like a porn star name.  I’d watch a movie with her in it. 

But what to say about War and Peace?  When I first heard somebody talking about it I thought they were saying Warren Peace.  And I was like who the fuck is Warren Peace?  I never heard about him like I heard about somebody like Huckleberry Finn, for example, or Jesus.  And then I found out it wasn’t Warren Peace.  It was War and Peace.  And I thought what a stupid name for a book.  It’s like okay, I’m going to write a book and I’m going to call it “Good and Bad”.  Or after years of writing over 2000 pages with a feather pen and probably getting mercury poisoning, call it “Right and Left”.  It just seems to me that not much thought went into that and that not only cheats the reader but more importantly cheats the writer.  But it’s probably a good book because it’s been around since the Bible and bookstores still sell it.