taerowyn: (Reading)
So it's getting perilously close to the end and I don't think I'm going to make the full "book-a-week-for-a-year" since it's already week 51 and I'm only on book 46. Maybe I'll consider it a work year...I get 4 weeks vacation; that means only 48 weeks and only 48 books. Yeah, that's the ticket.

Really, either way I'm quite happy with how I did. I'm going to try it again next year and only slightly modify the second half of the resolution, instead of not being allowed to buy any books (and I"m as shocked as you are that I stuck to this), I'm allowed to buy one book a month. I still have too many unread books on my shelves to allow myself to go back to my old book-buying habits.

Anyway, on to the reading details... )

So that's it...we'll see how many books I can get read in the next two weeks. And hey, with that blizzard going on out West there's some good odds I'll be spending loads of time in the airport on Friday so maybe I can get a book or two done there (she says while frantically looking for a silver lining. As I told [livejournal.com profile] schwa242, White Christmas is fine... "[livejournal.com profile] taerowyn stuck in Dallas cause $&#@ing DIA is snowed in" Christmas is not.)
taerowyn: (Reading)
OK...last time, did I or did I not tell you people to remind me not to go so long between entries. So much to type... )

And yes, I know it's week 47, but I'm tired of typing...I'll get caught the rest of the way up later.

Weeks 7-19

May. 15th, 2006 09:51 pm
taerowyn: (Reading)
So I'm a little behind on updating my year of books so here goes:

Week 7
7. Fateful Harvest : The True Story of a Small Town, a Global Industry, and a Toxic Secret by Duff Wilson: An Erin Brokovich like story all about the pesticide industry...makes me scared of eating veggies, but sadly, not scared enough to always buy organic cause, hey...student loans. Very well written...one of those newspaper expose into book type deals and very engrossing.

Week 8

Week 9
8. Elementary Particles by Michel Houellebecq and Frank Wynne : Not quite what what I was expecting and it wasn't til I realized that the background of the cover was skin that it made a bit more sense to me. Delves in to science, relationships, sex, philosophy and a whole host of other issues. Not my favorite read ever, but a trip I don't regret taking.

Week 10
9. The Riddle of the Wren by Charles DeLint: Good old DeLint. His books are always so original, but they all have a similar feel so that even if you've never read the one in your hands, it still feels like returning home. Same fantastic blend of different cultures mythologies...just...yeah!

10. Dealing with Dragons by Patricia C. Wrede: Picked up in a used bookstore as a "Remember-When" book. Don't know when I first read it...10? 12? Just cute, simple sassy, refuse to fit the mold, heroine style fantasy. The kind I grew up on. Shut up!

Week 11

Week 12
11. Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers by Mary Roach: One of two well-hyped books this week. This was definitely the better. Laugh out loud funny book, but not something to be read at meal times. I can't recommend it enough. My favorite blend of science, humor and curiosity. Too good!

12. The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd: Not to say that this wasn't good...just didn't hit on my science nerve so inherently had to lose out. Was definitely a page-turner though and I'm glad I finally got around to it (Thanks [livejournal.com profile] eeyorekdm!)

Week 13
13. 12,000 Miles in the Nick of Time: A Semi-Dysfunctional Family Circumnavigates the Globe by Mark Jacobson: Besides the science writing, my other love is the travel writing. Fun! Loved the description of place as well as family dynamic. Kind of a "What might have been" if my family had done the international travel a few years later than we actually did.

Week 14
14. Neuromancer by William Gibson: Hard to believe that this is actually the first time I read this. I liked it...though not as much as I feel I should have (I think I liked Pattern Recognition more). Probably had my impressions skewed by seeing the Matrix and other such pop cultureness before reading this so it didn't seem quite as cutting edge as I'm sure it did when it first hit.

15. Pure Drivel by Steve Martin: It wasn't drivel, but it sure as hell was funny.

16. Learning to See Creatively by Bryan Peterson: This has been on my wish lsit for years, so imagine my happiness when I found it in a used bookstore. I don't know how it will affect my photography, but since I already catch myself looking at things differently, I can only imagine it will be good.

Week 15

Week 16
17. My Year in Meat by by Ruth L. Ozeki: I really can't recommend this highly enough. Kind of a fiction version of Fast Food Nation meets and insiders guide to the making of Supersize Me if one or both of them were set in Japan. Um...yeah...that in now way does the book justice. Just understand that it kicks ass and you should totally go out there and read it. Now. What are you waiting for? Go!

Week 17
18. I'm a Stranger Here Myself by Bill Bryson: Good, of course...it's Bryson. I was a little disconcerted to find it was a series of columns and not a cohesive book, but it was still enjoyable like all Bryson is.

Week 18
19. Going Solo by Roald Dahl: I had no idea that he'd written a sequel to Boy until I found this in a used bookstore. It was a very happy discovery. All about his time in Africa and with the RAF during WWII. So engrossing, both as a personal history and as a look into a world that no longer exists (for better and/or for worse).

Week 19
20. My Kind of Place by Susan Orlean: I enjoyed this. There are a few places where her literary turns become a wee bit anvilicious, but overall it was an enjoyable read. As I've got more of hers on my shelf to get to, that's definitely a good thing.

21 The Fairy Godmother by Mercedes Lackey: This was a re-read. Something made me think of part of the plot recently and as I was "trapped" in the apartment all weekend I decided to go for a refresher. Just as good as the first time.

Phew....remind me to do these things more often so there's less to type.

Weeks 1-6

Feb. 9th, 2006 11:31 pm
taerowyn: (Reading)
I never mentioned it because it wasn't really an official New Year's Resolution, just something I'm trying and since we're six weeks into the year and I'm still on track...

Anyway, like my last semester in school, I've decided I'm not allowed to buy any new books until I finish reading the ones I already own that I have yet to read. During my last semester, I applied an expiration date of only a few months (ie the end of the semester). This time I'm going for a full year. My hope is that by the time the year is up, I won't have any unread books left.

This is helped by goal number two...to read a book a week all year. As I said, we're into week six and thus far I have read:

1. Mother Tongue by Bill Bryson: it's about how English developed as a language. It's got the Bryson touch, but somehow wasn't as appealing as some of his others. Possibly too dry a subject?

2. What Just Happened: A Chronicle from the Information Frontier by James Gleick: A collection of articles he wrote from the early nineties to about 2003 on computers, the Internet etc. Fun to read some of the "predictions," both those that proved true and those that didn't...yet.

3. Microserfs by Douglas Coupland: The choice obviously inspired by the previous book. I think this may be my favorite of his that I've read so far.

4. Fire and Hemlock by Diana Wynne Jones: Good old teen-fantasy by the author of Howl's Moving Castle. This one was just as good, but in a different way. More of an urban fantasy than Howl's which was more fairy tale-esque (not that this didn't have fairy tale qualities)

5. In This Country by Aine Greaney: A collection of personal essays about one woman's experience coming to America as an illegal immigrant from Ireland in the 1980s. She has good voice, but the one drawback was that this was a vanity self-published book...as evidenced by the woeful copy-editing job.

6. Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut: This is part of my efforts to read a bit more actual Literature (capital L). I just finished it today. Still not sure what I think about it. I know lots of people love, love, love it. I'm just kind of...meh. Maybe it needs to percolate in my brain a bit more...or be re-read. We'll see.

So yeah...hopefully I'll have entries like this every couple of weeks, keeping track. I'd ask for suggestions on what to read, but I'm not allowed to buy anything new. I'm also going to allow books that I reread to count so I can take a break from the "must read my unread books!" mission every once and awhile and revisit some old friends.
taerowyn: (Moderation)
MMmmmmmm...lovely weekend and it's still got hours more to go. And, added bonus, the sun is finally back (hooray for the sun!!!).

Had an old friend from CO out to visit. She got in late Friday night...after falling asleep on the train and missing her stop, which really wouldn't be as funny if it weren't for the fact that this is the third train mishap she's had in visiting me, twice in LI and once here. It's odd that she now lives on LI and is attending the school that bought my bankrupt school. To add to the connections, her brother went to college in CO with Boy Roommate and his friend who were over last night and his friend actually knew her brother.

OK, strange coincidences and happenstances to the side. Yesterday was a fun day, despite the deluge. We joked that we should probably go from church to temple to mosque til we found the right one to repent in to stop the rain. A week of rain is a bit much, but at least it's finally stopped.

Anyway, we started off with brunch at a coffee house that does amazing crepes. Split a pesto chicken one and a nutella-banana one (mmmmmmmm!). Off to Target to try to find Red Sox Monopoly for her hubbie with no luck.

Got back to the apartment and tried to catch the T for a trip to the Gardner museum, but the deluge won and we gave up, got the car and went to see a movie. Saw Good Night and Good Luck, which is a biopic about Edward R. Murrow and CBS taking on McCarthy. Really, REALLY good. I'd read some reviews that there were undertones of political commentary on today...they weren't undertones, they were just flat out tones. But, despite the lack of subtlety, they still did a phenomenal job. It was pure genius to not have an actor for McCarthy and just use old film clips of him. The cinematography was fabulous and the messages (one about the political atmosphere and the other about the wasteland that is TV) were spot on and well-conveyed. I highly recommend the film.

Since the movie was at the Fenway theater we stopped at a souvenir store to see if they had Red Sox Monopoly with no luck. Thankfully the BU Barnes and Noble did.

After that we hit Harvard Square, which, of course, meant the Harvard bookstore. I got some great used books (Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers and Why Things Bite Back: Technology and the Revenge of Unintended Consequences both of which I've been meaning to read for awhile now and Beluga Days, which I didn't even know existed til yesterday, but....belugas!!!). I'm sure it'll take me forever to get around to read them considering the length of my "to read" list, but such is life. Then it was dinner at Legal Sea Foods. Yummy lobster and crab ravioli as well as some crab legs. We stopped by Finale on the way to the car to pick up dessert.

Home meant watching Mystic River with Boy Roommate and his friend. I'd already seen it and my assessment still stands...good movie, ends too abruptly and despite all the twisted minds of the male characters the freakiest character of all is Laura Linney because of her final speech...just...gah!

Off to the train station early this morning to drop my friend off. I've been relaxing all day today and then this evening is a yummy birthday dinner with school friends, work friends and even some CO friends so good times will be had. More on that after it happens. Hooray for the almighty weekend (and for the reappearance of the sun, of course!)
taerowyn: (Don't think so)
Went to see Dan Savage tonight. Too funny. I'll have to buy his book once it's out in paperback. What he read of it was stomach-cramp-inducing hilarious.

I've convinced a large group of people to come see Serenity with me tomorrow night. Should be fun. Boy and Girl Roommate wil be repeat viewers and then 4 to 5 others will be joining us. Just doing my part to ensure that there are sequels...
taerowyn: (Default)
Reading a book, The Happy Isles of Oceania, and this just kind of made me think of past, present, future and all:

Many people told me how European-looking [Melbourne] was...I didn't think so. It was more spacious, much younger, and had more of the aspect of a city in the American Midwest. European cities have a damaged and repaired look. Melbourne's most American feature was that it was obviously a city that had never been bombed.
taerowyn: (Happy Beluga)
And once again, PC sensibilities are taken a little too far.

Here's the actual petition. "Peter Jackson has decided to tastelessly name the sequel "The Two Towers". The title is clearly meant to refer to the attacks on the World Trade Center." Cause you know, it has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that that's the title of the actual book written 47 years ago. It's definitely just Peter Jackson being tasteless. Uh-huh.
taerowyn: (Default)
I never thought I would say this, but in this particular case, I can honestly say I own too many books. Of course, when you have to empty out all your book cases so you can move them out of your room so you can paint, it really doesn't take a lot of books to become "too many," but really, four book cases and a half-full wardrobe is a wee bit excessive.

However, it was well worth it as my room is now painted and pretty and I will try to get some pictures up asap so you can all see. It wasn't a very restful weekend, but I definitely have a sense of accomplishment afterwards.


Feb. 26th, 2002 02:06 pm
taerowyn: (Default)
And speaking of spending a day at the Tattered Cover, Schwa, check this out.
taerowyn: (Default)
Went out with "the girls" last Friday. Had fun but I noticed something. They were talking and talking about their lives on and on and I was like "work, family...yeah." True a vast majority of their talk was bitching about boyfriends, but it kind of drove home how much of a holding pattern I am in; existing as opposed to living. I'm not unhappy, just ____.

Anyway, also saw Lord of the Rings again last weekend. Basically saw the movie, read the book, then saw the movie. I actually think I liked it better before having read the book. I was more able to get totally engrossed in the story because I wasn't thinking "They left that out, such and such is happening next, this is important cause in the next book..." I did, however, catch names and connections a lot easier having read the book and was much happier with the ending since a) I knew what it could have been if they ended it where the book ended and b) knew how the whole thing ended.

Had good eeyorekdm phone time. Guess the math is two months without a phone call equals a two hour phone call. Playing catch-up is good. Letters and email are nice, but it doesn't beat the hyperactive babbling over top of each other's babble that ensues when we actually talk.

Not much else to say, just doing my best to put off work. See how well I did?

Oh goody

Feb. 12th, 2002 08:18 am
taerowyn: (Default)
Well, at least they're not burning books, but why do I feel the need to add "yet."




Feb. 5th, 2002 10:31 am
taerowyn: (devil)
Read through my past entries of late. More than fifty percent of them were complaints. My aren't I the whiny bitch of late. Should try to focus on the positive, but you usually don't need to VENT the positive. Anyway happy thoughts:

  • When I got home last night, mom was asleep so it was like having the house to myself anyway (see last entry).
  • I got a letter from eeyorekdm. YEAH MAIL!!
  • I'm getting sick (this is happy as it may mean legitimate time off from work :-)
  • I'm eating very yummy raspberries that I bought yesterday. MMMMM raspberries.
  • I have numerous good books sitting at home waiting for me.
  • I may be learning to ski this weekend (this remains to be seen whether it's happy or not, ask me on Monday if I'm on crutches).
  • I will be spending time with the girls this weekend... including The Six-Pack - the Next Generation (aka Christa).

So basically I should stop whining and be happy...I shall certainly give it a try.


Jan. 2nd, 2002 07:06 pm
taerowyn: (Default)
Just finished a very satisfying book, American Gods by Neil Gaiman. I recommend it to any and all. One of my favorite passages:
"You wouldn't believe me if I told you."

"I would." She sounded angry now. He wondered if bringing wine to the dinner had been a wise idea. Life was certainly not a cabernet right now.

"It's not easy to believe."

"I," she told him, "can believe anything. You have no idea what I can believe."


"I can believe things that are true and I can believe things that aren't true and I can believe things where nobody knows if they're true or not. I can believe in Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny and Marilyn Monroe and the Beatles and Mister Ed. Listen - I believe that people are perfectible, that knowledge is infinite, that the world is run by secret banking cartels and is visited by aliens on a regular basis, nice ones that look like wrinkley lemurs and bad ones who mutilate cattle and want our water and our women. I believe that the future sucks and I believe that the future rocks and I believe that one day White Buffalo Woman is going to come back and kick everyone's ass. I believe that all men are just overgrown boys with deep problems communicting and that the decline in good sex in America is coincident with the decline in drive-in movie theaters from stateto state. I belive that all politicians are unprincipled crooks and i still believe that they are better than the alternative. I believe that California is going to sink into the sea when the big one comes, while Florida is going to dissolve into madness and alligators and toxic waste. I believe that antibacterial soap is destroying our resistance to dirt and disease so that one day we'll all be wiped out by the common cold like the Martians in War of the Worlds. I believe that the greates poets of the last century were Edith Sitwell and Don Marquis, that jade is dried dragon sperm, and that thousands of years ago in a former life I was a one-armed Siberian shaman. I believe that mankind's destiny lies in the stars. I believe that candy really did taste better when I was a kid, that it's aerodynamicaly impossible for a bumblebee to fly, that light is a wave and a particle, and there's a cat in a box somewhere who's alive and dead at the same time (although if they don't ever open the box to feed it it'll eventually jut be two different kinds of dead), and that there are stars in the universe billions of years older than the universe itself. I believe in a personal god who cares about me and worries and oversees everything I do. I believe in an impersonal god who set the universe in motion and went off to hang with her girlfriends and doesn't even know I'm alive. I believe in an empty and godless universe of casual choas, background noise, and sheer blind luck. I believe that anyone who says that sex is overrated just hasn't done it properly. I believe htat anyone who claims to know what's going on will lie about the little things too. I believe in absolute honesty and sensible social lies. I believe in a woman's right to choose, a baby's right to live, that while all human life is sacred there's nothing wrong with the death penalty if you can trust the legal system implicitly, and that no one but a moron would ever trust the legal system. I believe that life is a game, that life is a cruel joke, and that life is what happens when you're alive and that you might as well lie back and enjoy it."

I do so like, so very much. Anyway, you should go read it. Now. What are you waiting for?


Dec. 28th, 2001 02:27 pm
taerowyn: (devil)
I'm in a very good mood, so I thought I'd share. Don't really know what brought it on. Perhaps the books I just bought from the Book Rack (notice I said RACK you sick minded FTC folks), or maybe the ones I got from the library, or maybe the ones on their way from Amazon. MMMMMMM boooooooks!!!!! Then again, it could be the four day weekend, the fact that I'm all healthy again, the new year's party I get to get all dressed up and schnazzy for, the many hours of The Sims I have ahead of me, the movies I rented, or any of countless other small little things that are making me smile. Who knows? It's a mystery.
taerowyn: (Default)
Just finished reading a book called The Invisible Circus last night. It's about a girl who follows her sister's footsteps to Europe eight years after her sister had died there. The familial/death part wasn't really what got to me though, it was the travel and self-discovery aspect that really touched a nerve. Every once in awhile (usually as I'm commuting to work, go figure), I think about how much I just want to pack up and go somewhere...explore the world, visit places I've never been or haven't been since I was young.

That feeling is quickly squelched though...internal dialogue something like what follows:

I should do it, I should just pack up and go.

Yeah, but it costs money.

So? I have money put away in savings.

But that's money for school...for your future.

Fuck my future, I can get more money later, when am I ever going to be this free to just pack up and explore?

That's just so irresponsible, I can't believe you're thinking of throwing away your education, both the one you have and the one you plan to get.

It's not throwing it away, it's putting it on the side for a little while.

"A little while" my ass, you know the longer you stay out of scholl the less and less likely it is you'll go back. Go AFTER grad school.

Sigh, but I don't even know when grad school is going to be, and let's face it, it just boils down to me being too chickenshit to go. Too afraid to break the norm, too afraid to take the chance, too afraid to try to explain to the parents (Dear God I can only imagine). So instead I will continue to read such books and every couple of days wistfully peruse some travel website or another.

Speaking of which, Eeyorekdm...the package we used at Spring Break is available again. Can't you just hear Dingle a-callin'?
taerowyn: (Default)
Waiting for my boss to get in and give me some stuff to do. I'm an executive assistant, so when the executive isn't here and I get caught up on all my work I get to sit and twiddle my thumbs, or write to live journal.

Had a pretty good weekend. Spent Saturday doing photography stuff...haven't had a chance to really play with my new camera since I got it for graduation. Wish I had the time and money to really get into it, but in the meantime I must remember to set more time aside for play.

Sunday I had so many plans to be productive. Run errands, write in my journal, write some letters etc. However, one errand was to the library where a book I had on hold had come in so all my plans went up in a cloud of pages. Good book though.

Hmmmmm...turns out the boss isn't going to be in until after lunch. Guess I should take an early lunch as well. What sucks is in the afternoon I'm supposed to work down in customer service. But there's all this stuff I have to go over with the boss and he isn't here the whole morning. Grrrrrr.

What else to ramble on about. My birthday is coming. This is my first birthday at home in years. I'm looking forward to it. My friend is throwing me a party at her house (my house wouldn't work to well seeing as I live with my parents). Should be a blast. I'll be sure to tell all sorts of stories about it sometime next weekend.

Guess that's enough rambling. I'll try to see if there's any work for me to do elsewhere.


taerowyn: (Default)

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