(this is a repost from 2008)
Neal Stephenson is an amazing processor of information. I (like countless other fans of his work) am currently reading Anathem, his latest novel which tackles such myriad issues as religion, science, the long clock... I'm only 200 pages into a lengthy brick of a book. So far it is living up to the amazing trilogy of his previous work, The Baroque Cycle books.
Boing Boing reviews the new book by Kurt Anderson on America's love of the boom and bust cycle of business. I love how Anderson has bounced from Spy to Studio 360 to ripping fictional yarns (Turn of the Century) to serious social analysis -- I've never met him but he just strikes you as the definition of curious.
This book looks interesting and I'll probably read it. I was struck by this excerpt in the review, however, on how damn fat American's have gotten:
Meanwhile, the average American gained about a pound a year, so that an adult of a given age is now at least twenty pounds heavier than someone of the same age during the 1970s. Back in the late 1970s, 15 percent of Americans were obese; more than a third of us are now.
We are a nation of Cartmans...