Hatch, a prolific biographer of generals, Popes and dynastic families, turns his ever-admiring pen to his ""lifelong friend,"" Buckminster Fuller, the professional genius. The result is unfortunate for the designer of the geodesic dome and the airocean world map. Hatch gushes like an overweening mother: ""Bucky had made the first octet truss with toothpicks and dried peas in kindergarten in 1900; he patented it in 1961."" Fuller's career is nothing if not unorthodox: from his folly at Harvard to the ""intense period of silent thought"" when he first achieved his ""unlearning"" in the late '20's, his early adventures into revolutionary ""Dymaxion"" housing, automotive and bathroom design, his meeting with Einstein (""Young man, you amaze me. . .""), later search for the coordinate system of nature, discovery of the tetrahedronal structure of the universe, invention of synergetic geometry, the construction of the first big dome in 1948 at Black Mountain where he wowed the artist community, his advisory work in Russia, the development of his unique ""Fullerese"" prose/poetry, his stumping for the Great Designer and setting down of Fourteen Concepts (a ""grand strategy"" for mankind). ""The cliche of comparing him to Leonardo and Benjamin Franklin is so obvious"". . .and yet why is it that what Hatch has put us in mind of is closer to Gyro Gearloose?