Area Man Well-Versed In First Thirds Of Great Literature

Top Headlines

Issue 4117

Bartender Hurt By Unfinished Drink

DENVER—Eddie Meagher, a bartender at Madhatter's Pub, reported that he was "deeply hurt" by an unfinished Long Island Ice Tea left behind by one of his patrons Monday. "I made that drink especially for him," said a visibly disappointed Meagher. "Why would he leave almost a third of it sitting there? If something was wrong with it, he should've told me so. Then I could fix it." According to coworkers, Meagher hasn't been this upset since a patron thoughtlessly vomited four meticulously crafted Cosmos onto the street in front of the bar last Thursday.

Uneventful Past Finally Catches Up To Boring Man

MILTONVALE, KS—Years of safe living finally caught up to 33-year-old accountant Brian Jorgens Sunday during a visit from old friends. "I thought I'd put my sedate college days behind me forever," said Jorgens, standing in front of the Applebee's where he'd just spent three hours with his former college roommates. "But after listening to Ken and Louis reminisce about our summer-long cribbage tournament and the time we took a chartered tour bus to the Badlands—well, I realized that I can run from my boring past, but I can never truly hide." Jorgens vowed to turn his life around by deserting his wife and stealing a car.

Teen Reports Saturday Night Live Has Sucked Since Chris Kattan Left

AUGUSTA, GA—Once an avid fan of Saturday Night Live, Tom Simms, 16, said Monday that the live sketch-comedy institution began a downhill slide after Chris Kattan exited the show in 2003. "They don't do funny stuff like Mango or the Roxbury guys anymore," said Simms, who, from 1998 to 2004, watched SNL whenever he had a babysitter or could sneak downstairs after his parents fell asleep. "After Kattan left, the show stopped taking chances." Simms' older brother Joel and his uncle Kurt agreed that SNL's quality has declined, but linked the show's suck-points to the departure of Jim Breuer and Joe Piscopo, respectively.

National Poetry Month Raises Awareness Of Poetry Prevention

NEW YORK—This month marks the 10th National Poetry Month, a campaign created in 1996 to raise public awareness of the growing problem of poetry. "We must stop this scourge before more lives are exposed to poetry," said Dr. John Nieman of the American Poetry Prevention Society at a Monday fundraising luncheon. "It doesn't just affect women. Young people, particularly morose high-school and college students, are very susceptible to this terrible affliction. It is imperative that we eradicate poetry now, before more rainy afternoons are lost to it." Nieman said some early signs of poetry infection include increased self-absorption and tea consumption.

A Motivation Seminizar

Tha Nite Rida cruised like a muhfukkin' barracuda into tha Midstate parkin' lot an' wit' typical mad stealth executed a perfect 90-degree turn into her designated spot. "It Monday, bitchez," I said as I flew outta my hoopty an' hustled 2 tha employee entrance. "Aw yeah, y'all know how we do it. Bitchez best fo-get that punk-ass, no-workin' weekend shit an' be down wit' tha hardcore officin', or y'all gonna have tha H-Dog up in yo' shit. Word dat."

Amazing New Hyperbolic Chamber Greatest Invention In The History Of Mankind Ever

OAK RIDGE, TN—After six grueling years of Herculean research, scientists at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory pronounced EHC-1 Alpha, the new hyperbolic chamber, "an unquestionably, undeniably, fantastically revolutionary milestone in the history of science, mankind, and the universe, all of which it will undoubtedly change forever."

First Date In Six Months To Be Last Date In Six Years

ROSEBURG, OR—Although he is unaware of it, Jeff Schyler's date Friday will be his last until May 2011. "I'm so glad I finally got up the balls to ask out my friend's cute sister," said the 28-year-old, whose last date was in October. "I haven't been getting much action lately, but I have a really good feeling about this." Schyler plans to take his date to see Fever Pitch, hoping the romantic comedy will "get her in the mood," which it won't.

Family Feud Continues Years After Game-Show Appearance

POCATELLO, ID—More than two decades have passed since the Douglass family of Pocatello and the Bzymek family of Derby, NY faced off on the syndicated game show Family Feud. But instead of being tempered by time, the feud sparked in November 1979 has grown increasingly bitter with each passing year, and show producers say the two families have reached a level of acrimony unseen elsewhere in the program's 29-year history.
End Of Section
  • More News
Up Next
TV Listings
Just Like Everything Else!: Fox 8 p.m. EDT/7 p.m. ABC Pete's wife is still on him about building that darn shed, these kids are going to be the death of Sheila and Dave, and the hot next-door neighbor is up in EVERYBODY'S business! Sunday nights on ABC couldn't be any more familiar!

Special Coverage


  • Father Apologizes For Taking Out Anger On Wrong Son

    ELIZABETH, NJ—Moments after losing his composure with an unwarranted emotional outburst, local father David Kessler reportedly apologized to his son Christopher Thursday for erroneously taking out his anger on him and not his older brother Peter.


Area Man Well-Versed In First Thirds Of Great Literature

KANSAS CITY, MO—Malcolm Seward is a 38-year-old commercial kitchen designer, baseball fan, and avid supporter of public radio, but he said there's nothing he likes better than hunkering down in a comfortable chair, cracking open a brand-new copy of one of the world's literary classics, and reading the first 100 pages or so.

Seward in his home library.

"Listen, I'm no book snob," said Seward, settled into his favorite reading chair and running his hand over a nearly half-well-thumbed copy of Pride and Prejudice. "It's just that I love cracking the binding on a truly good book and reading until I drift off. I'd say it's something I do two or three times a week."

Seward, whose bookshelves house over 500 well-regarded and eagerly begun novels, developed his voracious appetite for starting books at a young age.

"Back in middle school, I'd rather watch a few innings of a Royals game or pop in a movie to relax," Seward said. "But that changed when my English teacher, Mrs. Ward, assigned us the first three chapters of To Kill A Mockingbird. I loved Harper Lee's depiction of quiet, small-town life. Even though I was out the entire next week with the flu, I retained my love of those opening chapters. I've brought it with me to every book I've begun to read since."

Seward said reading is not a cheap hobby. In addition to the cost of the books themselves, he has invested in custom-made bookshelves and numerous attractive bookmarks, each of which ultimately comes to rest somewhere between the front cover and the middle section of a pristine classic of Western literature. According to Seward, the enjoyment he experiences every time he feels himself being drawn 25 to 35 percent into one of the great stories is worth the expense.

A few classic works of literature Seward has started reading.

"There's nothing like the written word for capturing one's imagination," Seward said. "I still feel the thrill of setting off down the Mississippi on Huck Finn's raft; the utter desolation of Robinson Crusoe, alone on his island for all those years with no trace of another human; and the excitement of Hemingway's Santiago as he hooks the fish that will make him rich and renowned. It's quite inspiring, what can happen to you when you open a book and start in."

Although Seward would never call himself a great thinker—saying "I'm just a guy who likes to fall asleep with his nose in a book"—he confesses that he has found a lot to think about in his overtures into literature.

"Characters in the great books may be more allegory than human, but there's a lot you can take away from them anyway," Seward said. "You have to admire the leadership of Captain Ahab as he sets out in search of Moby Dick, or the sense of personal duty and faith in social order that drive Marlow up the Congo to meet Kurtz. Or, in a different vein altogether, you must pity the tragic ugly duckling that is Jane Austen's Emma. I know it may be old-fashioned to say this, but I think what you read, and how you read it, can say a lot about you."

Although reading consumes a lot of Seward's time, Anne, his wife of three months, happily tolerates it.

"His love of literature is inspirational," said Anne, whose own reading "runs to magazines." "Just the other day, out of nowhere, he said we were like a modern-day Catherine and Heathcliff. I think starting all those books has made Malcolm a real romantic."