***** 5 stars
G. Courter “LastWord” (Florida)
When my father, age 94, hears a phrase like “juggernaut” he shows off with a convoluted–and usually incorrect–story about its origin. Now I have “I Love It When You Talk Retro” to set matters straight. And no, Dad, juggernaut is NOT a German WWI term, Ralph Keyes explains it comes from the Hindu deity Jagannath…see the book for the full explanation and photo. For me “Retro” falls into three categories: a slideshow of my life (Woodstock Nation, Flower Children, Rosebud, Chauncey Gardiner), explanations for things I always hear by never really could define (What the hell is a catbird seat anyway?)and letting the cat out of the bag about knowledge that made me feel superior (Potemkin village, Pangloss, Miss Haversham, and Comstockery.) What’s interesting is that the value of this book will expand with time. The further we move away from these origins, the more confused we will become by their lingering references. Cultural literacy demands Retro fluency and this will be the classic reference. Even better: it’s a fun read…crispy chips of insights. Bet you can’t read just one section at a time. And Dad, Avatar, is also from the Hindu, and has nothing to do with birds and French!