David C (ashamel) wrote,
David C

Do or Die / Crip or Cry

One of the many and various books I am reading at the moment is Léon Bing's Do or Die, looking at the gang problem in L.A., mostly using interviews with actual gangbangers, both in the field and in detention. It's chilling stuff. There's a fair amount of swagger going on, but most of it seems to have seeped in to become real, so that killing someone for wearing the wrong colours, for example, is just an accepted part of the culture. It's hard to get an accurate idea of scale, but there's obviously a lot of it going on.

Most interesting bit so far was when the author sits in on a 'gang de-programming' class at a junior correctional facility. Just wow.

Meanwhile, a recent article in the NYTimes magazine talks about how diseases usually associated with age (heart attacks, gout, arthritis and many more) are affecting the urban young.

(Of course, Australia as its own economic/social health problems, and people will just keep making cures for rich people.)

So what else am I reading? Most of these books are research for various things, which I may or may not finish (for example, I'm reading Do or Die on the recommendation of LAbryrinth, which I want to get back to). That includes two books on Spain, with more sitting about. One is a primary school-age reference book, which are often very useful for basic facts that might not otherwise be obvious, and Spain: A History, edited by Raymond Carr. I have resisted the temptation to quote bits of Visigothic trivia to y'all.

Effective STL is interupting Web Server programming, in part because it's more fun to read, though Scott Meyers' style is wearing a little thin by now. Also, some stories from Agog! 2 (no I hadn't previously read it, why do you ask?), Brendan Duffy's 'Louder Echo' being more than worth a mention.

All this hopefully-useful stuff has sort of pushed Rynosseros aside (haven't touched it since a week before my last deadline), but I've got through Guido Crepax's Emmanuelle, and started on his Bianca in odd moments (more on such things later, no doubt). Also a book on throwing darts, which may improve my accuracy. One day.

So with all this, I naturally aren't going stir-crazy with nothing to write. Right?
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