Me All Dolled Up
I’ve been interested in the sciences and science fiction since about age seven. As I’ve obviously been around awhile, this means I’ve been reading the stuff for a very long time. Besides SF, my other interests include bowling (I hold about a 195 average), square dancing (A2 level), and chess, where I used to hold a high Class A rating, though it has currently dropped down into the ‘B’s.
I’m an electronics engineer, and work in a small company in California involved with making test equipment to test new integrated circuits as they come off the fabrication line. As part of my job, I’m often required to travel overseas to where these fabrication plants are, including Germany, Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Malaysia, Thailand, and Singapore.
Prior to becoming an engineer, I spent twelve years in the Air Force working in computer maintenance. Oddly enough, during that entire twelve years I was never stationed outside of the continental US. But I’d had enough moving around prior to that, as my father worked for a construction company, and the family moved every two or three years to some new locale, including England, Australia, and various places in the US, from Michigan to Tennessee.
On various blog posts, I may indicate a numerical rating for a book I’ve read. What those numbers mean is:
10 = perfect, the greatest book ever written, 9.0+ demands a reread, 7.5-8.5 excellent, has special qualities, 6.5-7.0 Above average, but usually only good for one read, 5.0-6.0 = average, nothing special, but readable, 4.0 – 4.5 = fair, 3.0 – 3.5 = poor, 2.0 – 2.5 = bad, 1.5- = should have been burned instead of published.
I’ve been using this rating scale for some 40 odd years, and it has served me fairly well. I’m also surprisingly consistent in handing these ratings out – I’ve had a few cases where I’ve re-read something many years after the initial read, not remembering that first read, give it a rating, then when I enter it in my database of such things find the earlier rating, and it’s almost invariable that the new rating will be within +/- 1/2 rating point of the older one. Now clearly these are strictly my opinions and very subjective, and someone else’s impression of the same work may be considerably different from mine. This is probably most marked in humorous works – some things hit my funny bone, others don’t, and my sense of humor is often different from others. Things like The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Galaxy, which many people think is one of the funniest SF things ever written, left me cold – and my rating relects that.