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March 5, 2005

Russ Walter is a piece of work


I just ran across him a week ago, though he's been around in published form since 1972.

That was the year he came out with the first edition of "The Secret Guide to Computers."

It was a 17-page pamphlet typed by Walter, copied, then handed out free to whoever wanted one.

Over the past 33 years the book has morphed into the 607-page 29th Edition that just arrived here from Amazon ($17.50).

On the front cover, it says the following:

    Free help from the author

    Phone Russ at 603-666-6644, day or night — he's usually in

Now, I don't know about you, but me, I don't know any computer types who offer help free, 24/7.

Or are available anything close to 24/7 even for money.

Sure, here at bookofjoe you can email me 24/7 and be certain you'll hear back within 24 hours, absolutely free; that's a far cry from taking your call, though.

Like me, Russ offers help on anything.

Unlike me, Russ can help you with your computer.

So you will find him darn useful if you need to get your machine up and running again at, say, 3:32 a.m. when you've got a presentation at 9.

Last year Walter wrote a second book, entitled "Tricky Living."

He says it explains everything else about modern life besides computers.

I ordered that one too.

How could I not, with stuff like this in "The Secret Guide to Computers":

    Hi! I'm Russ, the only person foolish enough to spend an entire lifetime writing a computer book.

    Phone day or night (around-the-clock, 24 hours). I'm usually in and sleep just lightly. (If no answer, I'm on an errand; try later)

    This book throws you into the action fast, makes you competent, then makes you wise.

    Prerequisite: This book was written for idiots. To see whether you can get through the math, take this test: count to ten but (here's the catch!) without looking at your fingers.

    Copying this book is all right! Make as many copies as you like, and don't pay us a cent.

    What this book will do for you: It'll make you even richer than the author! Alas, he's broke.

    Apology: Any original ideas in this book are errors.

    Author's qualifications: His wife calls him a "wise guy." His dog thinks he's just a guy. His dog is dead.

    About our headquarters: Come visit our Home Office, in Russ's home. It includes our Production Department, in or near Russ's bed.

Walter and I agree about many things, not least of which is our philosophy about people taking our stuff.

Don't have the energy to copy his book?

No problema: it's right here, online: read a quarter of it for free, and for a change of pace read a fourth of "Tricky Living" while you're at it.

Then call him and tell him what you thought: he'll be there waiting for you call.

Why would he want to be anywhere else?

March 5, 2005 at 11:01 AM | Permalink


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Like you, I offer free help about all topics -- not just about computers. When "Tricky Living" was published, the first three questions I got asked about life were:

"Is my dentist charging too much for a root canal?"

"How can I marry a Chinese woman?"

"Can Jews eat catfish?"

I answered them.

Posted by: Russ Walter | Mar 5, 2005 5:12:49 PM

I'm Russ Walter, author and publisher of "The Secret Guide to Computers." Thank you for mentioning the 29th edition of "The Secret Guide to Computers" in your blog, but you made a mistake: you told people to go to secretguide.net to read a copy of that book. Secretguide.net does NOT contain a copy of the 29th edition. Secretguide.net is also not our Website.

The official Website for "The Secret Guide to Computers" is www.secretfun.com. That site lets you read a quarter of the 29th "Secret Guide to Computers" for free, lets you read a quarter of "Tricky Living" for free, and lets you order both printed books in five ways, such as by phoning 603-666-6644 (day or night, we're usually in), which gets you the books faster (and usually cheaper) than through Amazon.

Secretguide.net was created by a reseller (Josh Feingold), not by us. It contains just the 28th edition (not the 29th), and Josh modified its text to tell people to order from him. He's stopped selling the book, but his site persists. Though his site is fun to look at, I recommend looking at www.secretfun.com to get info that's updated, more accurate, and also includes "Tricky Living."

"Tricky Living" goes way beyond "The Secret Guide to Computers": it covers health, daily survival, law, intellectual life, arts, American & foreign cultures, morality, and sexuality. It even includes topics of personal interest to you, Mr. Blogger, such as physicians (see pages 16-17) and Asian food (see pages 78-79, 82, 110, and 116).

Posted by: Russ Walter | Mar 5, 2005 4:49:31 PM

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