Wednesday, November 29, 2006


Sixty-nine and counting . . .

My reading goal for 2006 is 6 books per month, and tonight I started number 69, Bill Bryson's A Walk in the Woods, about his trek along the 2,100 Appalachian Trail. I have already listened to two of his tales - In A Sunburned Country, about his travels in Australia, and A Short History of Nearly Everything, that is, well, just what it says. Bryson delves into the history of the Earth, life, astronomy, biology . . . you name it.

In History, he raised a particularly interesting question. It is without question that the most deadly animal on the planet is not pit bulls, hippos, rattlesnakes or even stingrays, but mosquitos. Through the spread of malaria and other diseases, skeeters kill tens of thousands of people every year. But what blood borne disease do they not spread? AIDS. For now, at least, the AIDS virus does not survive inside the insect to be spread to the next bite victim. But imagine the devastation if the virus mutates to where it CAN survive transmission by mosquito . . .

9 Comments:

Blogger GetFlix said...

Simply the most evil creature on the planet.

9:56 PM  
Blogger v said...

Way to go on the 6 books a month pledge. I wish I could keep up with that. But there's this little problem I have called tv. Hah.

Anyway, sounds like a great book and from a very interesting author.

And I think mosquitos have it out for us, since, technically, we're the new species on the block.

11:02 PM  
Blogger LA said...

I'm reading the newest Bryson right now. I totally dig him.

I am grateful to not live in mosquito territory. I suffered them as a child in the Midwest, and haven't missed them the last 30 years in So Cal.

12:07 AM  
Blogger prunella jones said...

I have read this book and it's really funny. I love his traveling companion, Katz (I think that's his name)

9:54 AM  
Blogger sage said...

I love Bryson's writing, I would have killed him if I'd been hiking with him. As I've written else where, I'm still a mad that i've hiked the whole trail and sold one article and he hiked 1/3 of it and made a million! But the book is a hoot, enjoy. That's quite a goal, six a month!

10:35 AM  
Blogger EditThis said...

I used to be able to read that much, but now work takes up way too much time. I was reading In A Sunburnt Country a while back, and enjoyed it, but to be honest, found Bryson to be a little boring and was never able to finish it.

11:15 AM  
Blogger Diane said...

edit - this is the first Bryson I'm reading in written form, versus audible books - I really enjoyed the reading of In A Sunburned Country

flix, v, la - as the saying goes, Noah missed his chance when there were only 2 on the Ark

pru - oh good, I'm glad you liked it!

sage - color me green with jealousy that you have walked the entire AT - that is quite an accomplishment

3:01 PM  
Blogger M-M-M-Mishy said...

I am a mosquito magnet in the summer. Some people can go the entire season sans bite. They love me. It's a one-sided relationship.

6:36 PM  
Blogger Ffleur said...

I don't want to think about it. I was eaten alive by mosquitos every summer as a kid. They loved my fresh, sweet blood. My mother was always dabbing some stinky stuff on my neck.

11:35 PM  

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