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Wednesday, May 22, 2002

Star Wars vs Napoleon

I watch as many movies as the next guy. I suppose that I read more books than the next guy. Some guys never read any books, and for those non-readers I feel pity. The Star Wars movies aren’t my cup of tea. I fell asleep during the first one years ago and I'll wait to see the new gaggle. In general, I would say that entertainment that is geared towards kids I find anything but entertaining. There are exceptions to this but Star Wars doesn’t do it for me. To each his own.

In a search for entertainment I need not go much further than my bookshelves. I noticed The Age of Napoleon by J. Christopher Herold as I was organizing some of my books the other day. This was published in 1963 and I probably picked it up at a thrift store somewhere. I started reading it last night in bed and got as far as Napoleon’s ill-fated venture into Egypt.

Reading yet another account of the Battle of the Pyramids and the Battle of the Nile is far superior entertainment for me than anything Mr. Lucas and his special effects genies could conjure up on film. The action in The Age of Napoleon is at least as dramatic as anything in the Star Wars movies, and I don’t think anyone would disagree that the dialogue of history outshines the work of modern screenwriters.

Mr. Herold writes entertaining history and knows how to craft a good sentence. Describing Napoleon’s treaty with Austria at the expense of the Republic of Venice Herold writes, “Bonaparte’s Italian policy has been called statesmanlike by some and cynical by others; it is a quarrel over synonyms.” Star Wars has the phrase, “May the force be with you” and this book has Tocqueville’s summing up of the creed of political liberals “the gradual and progressive development of equality is both the past and the future of human history.” Book 1, Star Wars 0.

In spite of the constant media siege promoting it I have the sneaking suspicion that the Star Wars movie isn’t really very good. I’m sure that it could never enthrall me as does a good history book.

I am not one of those pseudo-intellectuals who profess that they never watch TV or movies—I enjoy both. I find that movies and TV appeal to my lazy side. I don’t ever open my eyes in the morning and immediately search for the remote on the TV but I do grab the book by my bed that I dropped as I fell off to sleep the night previous.

In the name of fair play this forum is being yielded to the spokesperson for the Northwest Star Wars Society


I guess you could say that I’m a Star Wars fanatic. My Dungeons and Dragons buddies and I are going to camp out at the theater so that we can be the first ones in line when tickets go on sale for the new episode. I really think that one guy in the movie is cool. When he won the fight I was super-stoked but when his manager died I was, like, so sad. Spock fucking RULES! We are bringing light sabers with us so we can have some fun while we’re camping out. Will there be any girls there?

Anybody who would rather read a book than go see Star Wars is a total dweeb. Here’s one thing his pansy-assed book doesn’t have: Jedi. Say no more.

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