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Japan culture? So nobody here has been in Washington DC near the west end of the National Mall

Based on his earlier blog, I'd wager that Ezra Klein's list was heavy on cookbooks, which he didn't feel added heft to his intellectual cred. Something needs to explain his mentioning the list and then declining to participate. Does anyone really believe that he didn't try and come up with an intellectually impressive list?

The last sentence of the article about the book list describes my reaction pretty well:

"And it also serves to make some of us feel unforgivably ignorant – time to go back to the library, I think."

Or in my case, pad the Amazon shopping list by another ten to fifteen books for which I won't have the time.

What do people mean when they say books influence them?

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