Tuesday, January 3, 2012


There truly cannot be anything more honest and more pure than nature. The patterns on leaves can't lie to you, a butterfly can't really corrupt your mind. Which is why it boggles the mind to think about all of the people who don't give a second thought to what they're doing when a fast food bag is thrown out of the car, or a pile of paper is tossed away instead of being recycled, or even when that ant pile is scattered in the park.

Why do we care so much for our pet dog that we feed him food off of our own tables, or spend thousands of dollars a year on his care, yet we disregard that our purchase of certain goods is causing the devastation and death of wolves and bears and beavers and pretty much any animal that pops up in your head right now. You argue that humans are not directly responsible for this mess, that we need these goods to survive, but let's be honest. We need food, clothing, and shelter. We need a purpose of some sort. We need love. We don't need so much of the excess in our lives. And you may argue that in order for an economy to function, there must be consumerism. But is an economy based on waste and rapid consumption of nonrenewable fuels worth supporting? And will my personal avowal to waste less money on material goods and instead travel or cook well or donate to charities destroy our economy? Not really. In fact, consumerism grows every year, but the economy gets grounded in more debt every year. Preserving the environment doesn't doom any person to failure, but it dooms so many of those plants and animals that would definitely still be around if not for people wanting to get bigger and better and richer and control more and more of the earth.

 Instead, environmentalism would improve air quality (not even talking about global warming, but just the purity of the oxygen you breathe every second), improve the appearance of cities and countryside alike (yeah, that road trip might actually be kind of pretty), and how can you claim that the appearance of wild animals thriving isn't absolutely thrilling? Maybe I'm an idealist, maybe I don't have all the facts, but just watching the waste grow, and seeing how it is directly harming the earth and really not doing much to even improve the status of so many people who are dying from lack of basic necessities is quite depressing.

 We all care about how the earth was made, but do we ever think about how the world is going to look at the end? Don't you think that the final judgment, whatever it may include, will include looking at the world and seeing whether humanity made it a better place, a beautiful place, or an ugly, dirty place? There's nothing that proves the character of a man or woman better than the place they live in; you'd never date someone living in filth and waste. Yet, look at the world. It is possible to use the earth and mine its resources and clear some land without making it look ugly. Ugly is bad. Ugly is undesirable. Ugly is even evil.

Forget your stupid gas-sucking car. Forget your double cheeseburger fix. Forget your super 'fun' hunting trip. Remember that everything you have comes from the dirt. And try to give back a little bit. You don't have to only buy organic produce or check the labels on every shirt to make sure it wasn't made in a factory run by child workers. But please, realize what you throw away. Do you really need a bag for that one item? Go bird-watching, or take a hike. Fall in love with nature again, as you loved nature when you played with those rolly-pollys bugs in kindergarten or watched a cocoon form in second grade science. Tell me why the earth has to be subjected to human negligence.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

New Year's Resolutions! 2012

So I controlled my egocentrism enough to avoid blogging like, at all, this past semester. Giving those college kids a good impression of myself wink wink. But a new year is here, and it must be greeted with some introspection. Also, I need to learn how to write again before classes start next week...

There's something strangely relieving about getting to the end of each year. It means that somehow, by the grace of God or your chosen school of thought on fate/religion/etc., we survived another year without being killed by economic failure, terrorists, car accidents, wild bears, family members, cancer, obesity, lightning, or falling while putting up Christmas lights. Perhaps that's why I enjoy making New Years' resolutions, to add more things to the list of 'what I survived.' Because, whenever you do anything out of the ordinary, be it sky-diving or taking another route to work, you could die. (fyi...Whenever you do anything in the ordinary, you could die too!) Last year, I kept a few of my resolutions, most importantly fooling lots of people into thinking I'm a natural redhead and attempting vegetarianism halfheartedly till July, when I ate my last hamburger and swore off meat until the industry resurrected its humanity. Let's hope that this year encounters the same [relative] success.

So, drink a toast to survival while ridiculing my goals for the upcoming year! And, take it with a few grains of salt...

1. Go vegan for a month (or longer!): I've been a flexitarian for a year now, and a real vegetarian for a good six months (depending on whether you count Taco Bell "chicken" as breaking that or not). It began as a contest, and transformed into something much more meaningful: health, animal rights, environmentalism, protesting additives in food, etc. Please, please, if you think I'm crazy, or if you want a reason to become vegetarian, read Jonathan Safran Foer's book "Eating Animals." His other novels are quite good as well: "Everything is Illuminated" and "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close" have both been made into movies. So, veganism is simply the next step. It will be difficult giving up milk and eggs and cheese (my cravings for brie will have to stop), but I see it as the most rewarding thing on this list, requiring extreme self-control and bearing through the criticism and ridicule of ignorant meat-eaters (take no offense, pretty please. Just because you contribute to a depraved society doesn't mean I don't love you...) It also means regulating clothes, accessories, cosmetic products, chapstick (can I afford enough vegan chapstick to last even a month?!), etc...

2. Go hiking in the woods (reminiscent of Bill Bryson!): Oh, the adventurous gene! I've never really done anything extremely risky, unless eating extreme amounts of chocolate counts. Thus, this longing to go lose myself in the wilderness for a week or two or more is uncharacteristic, but, with my strives to naturalize myself, it's a necessity to see what exactly I'd like to preserve...

3. Knit a sweater: I've picked up knitting a bit again, but haven't gone much farther than the basic knit-purl hat and scarf. But, with a bit of perseverance, and a good recipe to follow, a sweater might just be waiting under the Christmas tree for all you folks next year :P

4. Learn the clarinet again: So I got a clarinet over the summer, and have yet to do much other than look at it and remember which keys play which note. But, if I'm keeping up with this studying music thing, I need to learn something other than piano and vocal exercises. I need to be a Renaissance musician! Learn a bunch of different instruments and when I see, like, a lute at some person's house, I'll be able to say, "Oh hey, I can play that with so much badassery." And they'll be like, "Oh hey, you're a badass. Let me give you a job and lots of money and a free plane ticket to Australia." And I'll be set for life, just because I know how to play obscure instruments. But first, the clarinet...

5. Be nice: Okayy, so I get criticized for being a bit bitchy, a bit whiny from time to time...I can't help my natural wittiness, but I guess I could try to appreciate yours a bit more. Tell me to shut up when needed.

6. Give up soda: Coke, Pepsi, such easy caffeine fixes! But so bad for me :( On this pursuit of environmental awareness, pop will have to go by the wayside. Coffee and tea only from now on. And ginger ale on plane rides. The great carbonation god will have to forgive me.

7. Write something forrealz: So Nanowrimo was a failure. 750 words the first day, and I 'ran out of time' before I could get anything down on my lonely word document. Sigh. But this year, perhaps I can convince myself to write more by dreaming of instant fame and money enough to go on an African safari. I mean, who wouldn't want to pay money for and read something written by yours truly? ;)

8. Figure out whom to vote for: Yeah, voting's important. But when every candidate is a total prick, the decision to choose the best of the bad is quite difficult. Vote for major party candidate and support the corruption of the government? Or throw away a vote on a third party that has no chance of winning and rather idealist views that probz wouldn't work even if the candidate were to be elected? Well, eleven months to decide that. Or everyone could just vote for me...

9. Travel a bit: Where to? You tell me. Keep in mind my college kid budget, though, if you please. Free trips preferred.

10. Figure out my lyfe: Major? Career? Study abroad? Adventurer? Grad student? Career goals? Or career by chance? Or career at all? Pursue passions? What passions? Pursue reliable field? What field is reliable? Study more? Or have more fun? GPA, or experience? Woahh. WOAHH. Lyfe is too complicated, maybe I'll marry a rich man and sit and read and knit and own cats. Foreverrrrr.

Happy/Blessed/Illuminating New Year, my loves!!!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Food for Thought.

A great influx of requests for another blog post? I really should be comparing Eden to Canaan right now, but I just spent a good solid two hours on music theory (how on earth did Mozart write symphonies as a six year old??), and a nice break from the stress of schoolwork will be appreciated. For now, at least. When I wake up tomorrow and realize that I have a whole paper to write by Friday, perhaps the feeling will morph into utter despair. However, I've experienced utter despair enough times in the past few weeks that it has decreased into a dull ache that reappears whenever I listen to sappy music (are we human or are we fucking dancer?).
But if you want to know about my personal life, ask me personally. I'm here today to give you advice on how to survive eating out of a college cafeteria. If you are not already a college student, you will be soon enough, and really, you must eat to live (epic discovery, I'm sure, by our bacterium ancestors).

1) Don't be vegetarian. You're signing away your own life. I'm limited to the salad bar (gah iceberg spinach  arugula blah), the "vegetarian station" (oftentimes a little over iced smoothie thing...this is a full course? not all vegetarians are anorexic...), or the perpetual supply of lukewarm yogurt, honeydew melon, and cheese or veggie pizza. Tofu? Only served in chunks, like spongey gelatin. Beans? NEVER drained, and usually under spiced and overcooked. Raw veggies? Nonexistent. Often, after an unsatisfying dinner, I'll run back to my little room and pull out my pop tarts. Definitely not home-cooking.

2) Love pizza. Always available, either by the slice or by the personal pan (spinach, mushroom, and olive has become my ultimate favorite). Moderately healthful, as long as you avoid the meat lovers or triple cheese. Really, pizza accounts for at least one meal a day for me. It's only the second month, and I'm running out of food variety already....

3) Eat breakfast. Truly the only satisfying meal. Made to order omelets, waffles, and a perpetual supply of slightly burnt hash browns and slightly runny scrambled eggs, not to mention pineapple juice, crappy coffee (decaf or caffeinated? the lack of distinction has led to many caffeine withdrawal headaches and crashes in the middle of psych class. Crazed looking octopi covering my notes? Yes, I'm delirious). However, I actually wake up for breakfast maybe twice a week. My alarm is set early enough, but my brain cannot handle waking up 30 minutes early just for food.

4) Get used to not eating when you want to. I want to eat breakfast at 11 in the morning, lunch at 2:30, and dinner at 7:30 or later (I mean, I'll be up till 1, so a late dinner is much preferred). In reality, breakfast ends at 10, lunch at 2, and dinner at 8 (in reality of that reality, the cafeteria workers start shutting down at 7:30, and all the good stuff is gone by then anyways). So today, one meal in the middle of the day sufficed, since the food places were all closed by the time I felt hungry again. Oh, irregularity...

5) Lukewarm. Hope you like it.

6) Wait...that sushi has been sitting there un-iced from the lunch hours to the dinner hours. Food poisoning?  Not yet, but it looms around the corner...

7) Oh, the celebrations. Whenever a big influx of pro studs is on campus, or when some distinguished personality is present on campus, the Rat (our affectionate and actually official name for the main cafeteria) throws a little 'party'. For the "Oktoberfest", we were served very purple cabbage (but flavored with honey instead of vinegar?), German chocolate cake (baked goods...ALWAYS mediocre and disappointing), and some mush called German potato salad. So so sad for a little German girl like me...

8) Fro-yo is life. It is the main course (with granola or fresh fruit), the side dish (to wash down the salty soups) and of course, the dessert, piled high in a plastic cup and taken out to comfort students while they nurse their disappointed stomachs.

9) Stock up on ramen, easy mac, instant meals, peanut butter, crackers, anything with a bit of substance. Snickers bars. The ultimate power snack.

10) Work out. Even if you hate the cafeteria's food, it's still a buffet. You will gain weight unless you play a sport or live on a campus significantly larger than mine and must walk more than a minute to get to class. Treadmill, elliptical, weights, track. Whatever works for you. Like, seriously. If the gym wasn't closed already, I'd probably be there now, working off this midterm stress (which I really shouldn't have, considering I have no midterms...)

That being said, I plan on storing up for the winter when I go home this weekend. Stuffing my face with as much home cooking as possible and filling my suitcase with fresh-baked cookies and, if I weren't flying, containers upon containers of real food. If you really, really like food or are really, really picky, I would advise living slightly closer to home, just to survive.

It might work in your favor, though. Asking your parents for food instead of money will awake that instinct in them to feed their young, so they will give you more money to buy food. Eventually, though, you will find yourself actually spending it on food....

Thursday, September 29, 2011


SO I'm sitting in the Williford common room at Rhodes aka Hogwarts college (for some reason, the Harry Potter freaks here have anointed it thusly). I'm being forced to write right now, despite my emotional instability and penchant to post things that I regret approx. two seconds later. But I have wanted to chat with you, dear readers, about life. Life sucks. You make it suck. I make it suck. As babies, we suck. Literally. So we must carry on this tradition throughout the rest of our lives. And I'm only being half-sarcastic here.

I love my dorm, and I promise, Corey, that I will post a long meaningful blog post when I'm through with my first psych exam, which perhaps I ought to study for, and after I actually sleep a bit. I might even carry on with this particular thought process. But for now, good night, or, good all-nighters.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

The fair in farewell

I wanted to spend my last few days in Dallas doing the things I love the most. Namely, eating...reading...talking....seeing friends...playing house and dress-up with the little sibs...eating more...and listening to some classic Sinatra. But of course, packing and goodbyes and work all have filled my schedule to overflowing, and I come home, tired, and stay up for several more hours just to have that last bit of alone time before I live with even more people than I'm accustomed to...(hard to imagine, eh?)

Back in, oh, eighth grade, freshman year, I had time. I was a huge Sinatra fan. He was pretty much all I ever listened to and eventually I bought a life-size poster of him (with the amazing tilted fedora and the look he has of being a complete tool) and put it smack in the middle of a wall in my room. I listen every week on Sunday night from 6-8 to a Sinatra segment on one of those AM stations that has commercials for old people cruises and diet solutions.
Best part of the week, hands-down.

Next week, though, I enter the realm of Elvis. I like Elvis quite a bit. I hold a grudge against him, of course, for upstaging the Sinatra era, but he's so smooth that all that criticism just slides off like melted ice cream and those drops of melted ice cream are even tastier than the actual ice cream. (And this is why opposites attract, those drops of melted criticism are just sooo delicious...)

But just listening to Sinatra's voice, to all of his little slides and breath control and GAH he may not have the prettiest tone, but he has the most perfect technique. Technique is so underrated. Technique arises out of practice and experience and just general sensibility. 

The letter "r" is the most exciting letter in the alphabet, by far. Listen to Edith Piaf roll her French r's, or Sinatra draw out every single one of his, or Melody Gardot just gently vibrating them, and you will be more sensualized than after you watch a dramatic love scene. Absolute magic. 

I can't wait to develop my own technique: the technique of life! Just random moments of absolute joy have come upon me in the last few days, knowing that I will be starting so fresh, so new, something I have never been able to do before! Nobody has expectations, nobody expects me to be top in everything, or the total prude, or the shy one in the corner. I can be a slacker, an absolute opposite-of-prudish (....), and the most outrageously annoyingly loud person that everyone instantly HATES in the room. And so can you, dear reader. But only change into something or someone that YOU want to be, and that you enjoy being < cliche of the century, excuse my ineffective grammar.

Blah I'm supposed to be packing and/or asleep right now. But I'll have plenty of time to sleep after college, no? And if I'm not packed by Wednesday, then it's just really tough for me. (that's what friend are for, stealing necessities from, correct?). Nope, I've been painting my nails and watching music clips from the Music Man. Incredibly content. Excited. Nervous. And this is my last Saturday night in Dallas for a long, long time.

Perhaps if I ever have a break, I might possibly blog a bit. Ha, I might actually write something that stays on topic and qualifies as enjoyable. Till then, fare thee well, and brush three times a day. 

Friday, July 15, 2011

Petition to buy shampoo for Snape

Disregard the title.
This is not about Harry Potter.
There, now you know. You're free to leave this page, sigh from relief, or maybe even read on...

Okay, okay, that isn't a complete truth. I mean, I can't write the day after seeing the concluding chapter of my childhood series played out on the big screen without at least mentioning it! And I'll simply ask a question to those pseudo members of Dumbledore's Army which truly befoggles my poor vacation struck brain...If wands can be won by simply disarming someone, then why don't wizards have, like, stashes of wands that they've won?  This is a major plot point, guys, a major theme which was only brought up once Harry's wand was snapped back in Part I. Maybe I'm being silly. But besides crying hysterically during Snape's emotional memorical breakdown (men have feelings??), that question kept popping up like the bad-flavored Bertie Bott's Every Flavor Beans (in any of the books, does anybody ever actually find one that tastes good?)

Back to reality now. (Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?)

Back to reality now. Hey, I'm legal! Hey, I have (hopefully) 70+ years to do all the things I can do now that I'm legal. In fact, I should have been trying NOT to do those things before, since technically I only had 18 years to savor that!

Outside there's a boxcar waiting. Pixies. Quality music. Meaghan Smith. Quality cover. Check it out.

Dude, after spending two days in Memphis, I think I'm gonna like it. The barbecue is amazing (eee the vegetarian thing has descended into 'portion control' at this point), though the college food was barely edible. I love the classes I'm taking, though there really is not a whole bunch of variety (no 'Jane Austen' course or 'Psychology taught in the tradition of Sylvia Plath' or 'Underwater Basket-Weaving' or 'Picking your nose with a pipe cleaner') . There are some super cool hipstas like me (breaking into college buildings at night is so badass, and, like, spacey, man), but millions of bros and 'business' majors too (no judgment yet, though! I won't remember more than five or six names/faces anyways).

No math or science, did I mention that? I get at least a semester of simply exploring those subjects which I believe hold my true passion. Perhaps I will enjoy my studying, maybe find some people who like tea and discussing literature and listening to Frank Sinatra for two hours every Sunday night. Or maybe I'll study abroad somewhere and never, ever come back. Geeze, I wish I had the money/talent/balls to do that.

It was interesting, meeting people at orientation. Okay, my social skills are not the best. Best word to describe me with new people: forgettable. Anyways, very few people knew others. Most of us were thrown into this sea of new faces, a new city, a new lifestyle, a new FREEDOM. A deja-vu high school experience, except there's no home and old friends to go home to at the end of the day. Instead, there's the dorm and your roommate and Facebook to connect with home. And many people are thrown off by that. And when you see these people, obviously big fish at home, thrown into this ocean of other big fish and bigger fish, it's almost amusing. It would be, if I didn't feel the exact same way.

I can't wait, though. After eighteen years with all of you Dallasites, I'm ready to sign out permanently in a month. I'll be back de temps en temps, mais je voudrais voir le monde, seulement Tennessee maintenant, mais perchance other exciting places soon.

Friday, July 8, 2011

For Harry Potter fans

Superstitious people say that when you experience a full body chill, it means that someone is walking over your future gravesite. If that's so, then I'll probably be buried right in the middle of Trafalgar Square, where thousands of people gathered yesterday for the final red carpet premiere of the Harry Potter series, which opens next week on the very night of my 18th birthday. Of course, the wizarding age of becoming legal is 17, so the correlation is slightly off, but still, it is the end of childhood for me and for those cute little wizards and witches who somehow all had the luck to grow up and be attractive.

Although I didn't start reading Harry Potter till about 7th grade, and I've never been one of those diehard fans (quite frankly, some of those movies are pretty dull, the books are angsty, and the characters don't use NEARLY enough magic as Rowling created potential for in her world), for a fiction writer to reach this degree of fame in this century without any "Wizards Suck" movies made and actually receiving positive reviews from critics worldwide and even from the Vatican press? (Catholics have pretty darn good taste, man) Admiration and obsession are warranted.

The Harry Potter books are absolutely absorbing. There is one degree of literature and film that I call 'the vicarious dream', when the reader or viewer feels such a degree of oneness with the work of art that he or she is overwhelmed at the end and needs a moment of reflection and that sense of deep regret that there aren't 100 pages left to read. Woahhh when teenagers want a 500 page book to be longer, you know there's something special in there somewhere.

So I am putting aside the four other books I have started in the past couple weeks (Satanic Verses, Autograph Man, To the Lighthouse, Eating Animals) which have yet to catch my fancy (Virginia Woolf uses 11 commas on the first page, in one sentence, of her sensationally successful novel. And peers always tell me to cut my sentences down...) and rereading that final Harry Potter. I will probably be disappointed by the movie. I've been disappointed by all the others and all movie ever made based on my favorite bits of literature. Yet, I will conform, for the world for once made a good choice in choosing a global obsession. It'll all be over in a few months; the new Twilight movie will hit like a hangover, and an even newer craze will strike. But perhaps, Harry will remain that childhood favorite. Nancy Drew prevailed, the Simpsons prevailed, Woody Allen prevailed, Potter will prevail.

And Malfoy will always be my favorite.

Thursday, June 30, 2011


Last night, at about one oh clock in the morning, I finished writing a very deep, moving, sentimental reflection on my recent trip to the waterfalls and hills of New York, the caves of Kentucky, and the battlefields of Pennsylvania.
Then, Blogspot decided to shut down and not save any of it.

So, tonight, I decided that I would blog about my greatest fear.

During the last episode of the Glee Project, the subject was 'vulnerability'. There's an Irish guy competing (Damien, my future spouse, fyi), who has had a little difficulty with all the challenges. He's unable to open up. He can't make connections with his competitors, with the music (he's Irish and yet expected to know the latest Katy Perry), or with his own emotions. But in this last episode, he sang an Elvis song, 'Are You Lonesome Tonight.' (Now, despite my close proximity to Graceland next year, I've never been a huge fan. Elvis ended the jazz era, and I've always held that against him.) Damien sang the song, tears obviously forming, and he was saved to compete another week by those self-same tears. He'll get out soon; he doesn't have the right personality to be a star; plus he's already famous in Ireland, so it's all good. But yet, he described himself as 'numb', just going through the motions of life, without those necessary feelings or thoughts that really bring humans closer together. And he was crying about it, how his numbness had ruined the only relationship he had been able to start.

I was the exact same way (probably 'frozen' would be a better word than 'numb', though, my case was pretty serious, man) until this year, when life just kinda snowballed on me, and I had to force myself to feel or else be stuck, forever. So I felt (rather dramatically, if you ask those closest to me at the most intense times). I felt. Then the school year ended and once again, the wall closed up again. The little boy in Denmark stuck his finger in the dam's hole and stopped the flow of water.

I lost touch with people, or made touch but failed to maintain that touch. I tried, for sure, maybe not quite as hard as I could have, but I don't like to seem overbearing or to even put myself at risk for seeming overbearing. Some of them reciprocated the trying, some didn't. So I saw some people and didn't see many others. Obviously, schedules interfered outrageously, vacation, work, family, transportation, the whole drill, and yet, excuses don't always register in the brain and mind. Sometimes they make the situation worse (Why would THAT cancel our plans? Maybe she/he/it really doesn't want to spend time with me...MAYBE NOBODY LIKES ME. MAYBE I'LL NEVER FIND ANYONE. MAYBE ALIENS WILL ATTACK TOMORROW AND I WILL DIE WITHOUT EVER BEING LOVED!!!!) Others that I thought I had bonded with deeply over the past year, I've communicated with, but I honestly have not seen several of them since graduation. And that started up my fear again:

that your connections with people are ultimately shallow, that although your relationships feel congenial at the time, an audit of your life would produce an emotional safety deposit box of low-interest holdings and uninvested windfall profits, which will indicate you were never really at risk of joy, sacrifice or loss.

ajdklfjakldjfaskdf. It's an annoying feeling, knowing that you are loved, but doubting it all the same. What does it mean?

You're human, congratulations!

P.S. I seriously doubt that this is a real word, so don't use it in a Psych paper or anything...You might just give your teacher a really good laugh

Saturday, June 18, 2011


Hmmm I'm multi-tasking to the extreme right now...eating freshly baked chocolate peanut butter chip cookies, reading some short stories on the 'true meaning of loveeee', watching (500) Days of Summer (in French-just as heartbreaking), and contemplating the little things that absolutely wrack chaos on my overworked brain. This world is way too confusing for me. If I didn't love men so much, I'd become a nun in a secluded convent in Switzerland (Why Switzerland? So I wouldn't get too hot wearing the habit, naturally. Also, so that I could eat as much Swiss chocolate as I want, get super fat, and look exactly the same wearing that spectacular habit as I did 50 pounds earlier.)

1. Feather hair extensions.
Feathers? In your hair? And not even as part of a pretty bow or a cool accessory, but for weeks? I fail to see the attraction of this fad. My superpower of choice would be flying, but I don't want to become a bird. They smell, they poop on my car (especially right after I wash it!), and yes, I'm more or less vegetarian, but all the rest of you heathens EAT birds. Putting feathers in your hair is like using Pomeranians as earmuffs, or those stick insects as chopsticks. It's strange. But saying that, I cannot judge hair alterations, as I am fond of the dye bottle myself. But I would freely admit that I might look silly with red hair. Admit that you definitely look silly with feathers in your hair.

2. The fact that politicians are stupid enough to post lewd pictures of themselves on the web/ have open affairs and babies with women other than their beloved spouse/ are more hypocritical than televangelists...AND YET WE STILL VOTE FOR THEM?

3a. How Keanu Reeves became famous.
3b. How the Kardashians became famous.
3c. How Jon and Kate became famous.
3d. How the Biebs became famous.
3e. How Paris Hilton became famous.
3f. How I'm not famous.

4. The purpose of calculus

5. The attraction to the cowboy persona: country music, boots, dirt, hick accents, plaid

6. Why nobody (excepting my family and a few privileged others) enjoys Marx Brothers' movies anymore.

7. The addiction to smoking tobacco. You smell.

8. Russian writers.

9. Insomnia at night, but practical narcolepsy during the day. Perhaps I'm nocturnal?

10.  The difficulty people seem to have with their vs. they're vs. there.

11. Stonehenge and crop circles.

12. Fax machines.

13. Parking, particularly parallel.

14. Time zones.

15. North Korea.

16. Why organized religions are so damned complicated. If heaven is really THAT hard to get into, than it probably isn't completely worth it...

17. Google makes a rainbow appear when you google something related to homosexuality...gay, lesbian, LGBT, queer (derogatory?)

18. Video games.

19. Strapless bikini tops. Lady, if you're THAT picky about your tan line, than you might want to consider your purpose in life.

20. Quantum foam.

21. Perfectly serious Facebook statuses that tell your life story. "My boyfriend broke up with me I just ate a cashew I just worked for twelve hours spent an hour and five minutes at the gym fml the guy next to me winked! OMG! I'm fat ugly perfect better than you better than lmao my parents whom I hate with a fiery passion even though they paid for my brand new iPhone a car omfg a college education that I will never take advantage of since I will be hungover everyday and not go to class and did I mention that I named my new fish Fluffy lol?

22. How on earth so many nail parlors stay in business. There's one on every single corner, I swear.


24. The issue so many people have with dating outside their racial groups...

25. War.

26. Decorative zippers.

27. White rappers.

28. Rick Perry's stint as governor.

29. And why it never ends.

30a. And finally, why EVERYTHING seems to be attracted to me.
30b. Except for men.
30c. Sigh.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Read uh Book.

Summertime. Ella Fitzgerald's heavenly voice floats through my head every morning (*cough* afternoon...) when I wake up, inspiring me to new heights of achievement: cleaning the house, color-coding my closet, alphabetizing my bookshelf, learning guitar or practicing piano, developing a taste for tofu, exploring Dallas before I leave (forever?). Then I step outside, HEATSTROKE!, and step inside or run to the wonderful air-conditioning of my car. Why did I not choose the college in Minnesota again? Too cold? Barmy.

So, summer, as always, becomes a time to experience new things...vicariously through literature!
Here's what has caught my eye during these early days of summer (technically late spring, I suppose...):

1. Interpreter of Maladies by Jhumpa Lahiri

I have been incredibly fascinated by Indian culture recently, perhaps because of that viral song "Jai-ho," or maybe because I was Indian-born in my past life (reincarnation is definitely my favorite component of any organized religion today). This is a collection of short stories by the acclaimed Indian-heritaged, English-born, and America-living author of The Namesake. It explores the difficulties faced by families trying to hold on to heritage and tradition, but being influenced by modern Western culture. I've read a few of the stories, one of which brought up the issue of how children, or lack of, can absolutely destroy a  marriage, and even the individual person. Another confronted adultery, yet another abandonment. They all incorporate food and religion to a certain extent and truly are poignant.

Appropriate reading time: right before bed
Length: 198 pages

2. Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer

Oh, Jonathan. How I adore his other two novels: Everything is Illuminated (made into a spectacular movie starring little Frodo- the sausage scene and Sammy Davis Jr. Jr. the seeing-eye bitch are unforgettable) and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close (one of those visually stunning books). This is in a bit different vein, seeing as it is non-fiction and basically a book which vegetarians love and everyone else ignores. It turned Natalie Portman into a die-hard vegan, and yet the first chapter opens with Foer reminiscing about his grandmother's chicken stew, and how important food traditions are to development. Perhaps it will inspire me to keep up my vegi/flexitarianism-ish lifestyle in college, perhaps not. I just look forward to reading more of this wonderful wordsmith.

Appropriate reading time: before meals if you are trying to lose weight. Otherwise, read when in a wordy, non-fiction sort of mood.
Length: 352 pages

3. The Satanic Verses by Salman Rushdie

I looked at the title..and my rebellious teenage raised-Catholic spirit said, "YES!" It is purely coincidence, I say, that the book stars two men from Bombay, and that the first line directly references reincarnation. Aaah, coincidence?, you say. Perhaps this book will clarify the difference between coincidence and fate. Perhaps the "metamorphoses, dreams, and revelations" which occur to these men will occur to me? It's gotten a bit of a hostile reaction from Muslims, even warranting a fatwā and many burnings. However, that serves to make it appear even more fascinating. This one might be skipping up a few places on the list, so I can read it and be enlightened sooner...

Appropriate reading time: after yoga
Length: 547 pages

4. Middlemarch by George Eliot

Mmmm. Victorian literature. My very favorite. And, when written by that genius of English literature, George Eliot, this particular piece of literature, touted by some to be the greatest English novel ever written, is a must-read. George Eliot is the penname of Mary Anne Evans, a controversial figure who lived with a married man for twenty years (have no fear, his wife was aware of this 'open marriage,' for she had had two children with another man). I have read Silas Marner, a vaguely fairy-tale like story, and was incredibly impressed by Eliot's writing style, which was not weighted down as much as say, Henry James' style, by dalliances to architecture and mysticism. I know absolutely nothing about the plot, though, so this should be a good surprise!

Appropriate reading times: at a coffee-shop, when trying to appear smart and attract suitable mates
Length: 904 pages (a bit of a heavyweight...but then again, most instruction manuals average about that length nowadays.)

5. The Autograph Man by Zadie Smith

Zadie Smith is one of those authors who somehow blends intellectualism, beautiful words, one-liners, realism, sex, religion, race, and true humor all into one. Her other novels, White Teeth and On Beauty are re-readable, an achievement which truly qualifies them as gold in my book [to date, I've only reread comic books (the badass 1950 Superman ones!), Nancy Drew, and Chaim Potok novels]. This one...has gotten mehh reviews. Zadie admits to having writer's block while writing it (writer's block only once out of three books? She's a goddess.) Somehow, the book features a Jewish Chinese-American man (a rare combination, I believe) who, surprise!, sells autographs for a living. Zadie Smith is never a boring writer, so this probably qualifies as more of a quick-read than any of the above. I recommend checking out her other books first, though. They might just change your perceptions a bit.

Appropriate reading times: tanning, airplane trips
Length: 432 pages

In college, I don't anticipate getting as much free reading time, especially as I am probably heading toward an English major, which requires just a bit of reading. So, this is cram time for me. Finish off all those books that I never got around to opening. Let's see how far I get....