Description

Welcome to The Once Lost Wanderer. The name is derived from two poems: Amazing Grace by reformed slave trader John Newton, and All That is Gold Does Not Glitter by J.R.R. Tolkien.

About

Like Newton, I once was lost but now am found, but as Tolkien puts it, not all those who wander are lost. Though I am no longer lost, I still like to wander a bit, sometimes through hidden places of Middle Earth or the courts of Imperial Russia, at other times over grand plantations of the antebellum South or the inner sanctum of a mad scientist’s laboratory, through deepest seas, farthest planets, and the occasional insane asylum.


This blog is mostly about my quest to read the 100 Greatest Novels of all time, though I will add a bit of my own poetry, prose, or nonsense from time to time. It is dedicated to my sixth grade teacher, Mrs. Tina Banks of Burke School Elementary, Kalamazoo, Michigan, 1972-73...who gave me the gift of literature.

I am happily married; my beautiful wife and I have three wonderful children (son, son, daughter), two marvelous daughters-in-law, three adorable grandsons, and two beautiful granddaughters. It's not hyperbole; they really are beautiful, wonderful, marvelous, adorable, and again beautiful.

Me? I'm humble and lovable...which is an allusion to Shoe Shine Boy, the humble and lovable undercover identity of Underdog.  I see myself a little like Linus of peanuts as well. Two cartoon references ought to tell you something.

I share a birthday with Millard Fillmore. Though, we don't really share. It's all mine now. He's finished with it.

I have a job...a career even. I like what I do, and I'm good at it. That's a blessing.  I'm on my second career. I haven't been unemployed a single day for over 30 years. I tend to take having a job for granted, so let me acknowledge what a blessing that is, and thank the Good Lord for steady employment. I'm a writer of sorts professionally, though it's boring day-job stuff and not accessible to the public. I hope to write the great American novel someday. If that proves too difficult, I may slow my roll and shoot for the fairly decent Hoboken novel, giving myself a better statistical probability of success.

I've eaten over 30,000 pieces of toast. I love toast. I've heard you should write about what you know about, so my novel will probably be about toast.

I was born in Michigan and spent the first 20+ years of my life there. I have strict allegiance to the Detroit Lions, Red Wings, Tigers, and Pistons. I vacillate between the University of Michigan (UofM) and Michigan State University (MSU). I never attended either school. I graduated from the University of Maryland...Fear the Turtle, though I have never lived in Maryland.

I currently live and work in Northern Virginia. In between Michigan and Virginia, I lived in Japan, Nebraska, Hawaii, the Netherlands, Italy, Canada, and Texas. I've also traveled to South Korea, Thailand, the Philippines, Belgium, France, Germany, Luxembourg, the Czech Republic, and the U.K. Don't get me started on states. Not all of em. Most of em. Including the two tough ones.



I am told I have a quirky sense of humor. I prefer the word aloof. Some people have a hard time figuring out when I'm being serious. I'm seldom serious except when I think about the Pistons.

I'm not a cat person....though for most of my adult life I've had a cat. This is because I am a wife and daughter person. Currently we are catless.

I am a cat video person though. After an extensive personal inventory questionnaire that we both took, this was found to be the one and only thing I had in common with Ozzie Osbourne. His answers were pretty much unintelligible, but we just figured cuz...who doesn't like cat videos?

I once met Bobby Kennedy...sort of. He was right there...I coulda touched him, but he was sort of scary, so I didn't. My brother touched him, shook his hand, and I was touching my brother...so yeah, me and Bobby were tight. May he rest in peace.

I love words. I'm a logophile or word nerd. I love to know the origin, subtle meanings, common misuses, etc. I'm a bit fussy about words. I'm interested in names too, because names are words. My name Joseph, is Hebrew; it means: he shall add. Not as in math, but as in he shall be of benefit.

I collect quotations. One of my favorites, by the only President from the Great State of Michigan: Things are the way they are now, more than they ever have been before. Gerald R. Ford

By the way, it's a quotation not a quote. Quote is a verb; quotation is a noun. What I did (verb) was quote President Ford. The actual saying (noun) itself is a quotation. Fussy remember?

I enjoy reading, writing, eating toast, golfing, poking things with sticks, fishing, avoiding political discussions, confusing people, cheering for my teams, thinking deep thoughts, hating Windows 8, collecting quotations, and handicapping horse races.

Thanks for reading my blog. I love to see new page views. I love comments even more. For other book bloggers, I will gladly place a link to your blog on the blog roll and invite you to do the same.

Live justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with thy God!

12 comments:

  1. Hello, Joseph. I clicked over from The Classics Club, and I'm really glad I did! I can see I'm going to have fun exploring your blog and following your posts.

    I wish you all the best with your dream of writing the 'great American novel'. And I must thank you for the tid-bit on 'quotations' and 'quotes'. Come to think of it, I shouldn't have made this mistake. Thing is, I never thought about it. ^_^

    Happy New Year!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hello there, I just found your blog through the Classics Club! You have one of the best "About" pages ever, and now I'm off to see what sorts of books you've reviewed! I'm glad to make your acquaintance, fellow word nerd. My obsessions also include correct pronunciation and the French accent marks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Manette, what a sublime compliment. I'm pleased to make your acquaintance as well, and look forward to comparing notes where our reading may intersect.

      Delete
  3. Hi there, and thanks for following my blog. Yes, you really have an excellent 'about' page. Mine is quite dull by comparison - perhaps I should 'sex it up', as they say these days.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Great blog, great resources! :-)

    ReplyDelete
  5. Hello Joseph:

    I've nominated you for the Premio Dardos Award because I enjoy visiting your blog and reading your posts. https://zezee112.wordpress.com/2015/07/13/premio-dardos-award/

    ReplyDelete
  6. Thank you for visiting my blog and commenting. After reading your bio I shall now think of you as Toast Man to distinguish you from the others ;-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ah well, alrighty. I prefer my given pseudonym...The Wanderer, but whatevs :)

      Delete
  7. YOU'VE LISTED GONE WITH THE WIND AS ONE OF YOUR FAVORITE NOVELS ON YOUR BLOGGER PROFILE. THAT MAKES ME :)

    That is all...

    ReplyDelete
  8. It's great to find your blog, Joseph. We have a few reading challenges in common and I look forward to reading more about the books you read. I'm a year into my first round of the Classics Club, and I'm just about done with the 2017 Back to the Classics Challenge. Though I've been blogging a long time, I have only recently discovered reading challenges, and I've really enjoyed this first year or participating in a few. Cheers!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You've certainly jumped into a hefty dose of challenges now...Wow! Yep...let's compare notes where we overlap. Cheers.

      Delete

Comments are always welcome. In fact, they make my day. You needn't sign in to leave a comment. Just enter your comment, then on the "Comment as:" drop down menu, select "anonymous".