Sunday, July 30, 2006

dyeing to be read

Speaking of Haruki Murakami I finally started his biography Haruki Murakami and the Music of Words. It's a bit tough going though. I attribute that to the writer's style rather than the subject matter. Still, it is fun to have many of the connections I made between Murakami's various works verified. I also found out that there are two books of his I don't have. As I remember these are the ones my friend Pat was happy to have found so long ago.

Thus, on my started, but little progress made, reading list I have: A Perfect Red; Piers the Ploughman; Homespun the Making of an American Myth; Asleep; Leave it to Psmith; and I, Claudius. Oh I also went and picked up two new books yesterday: Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, and , The Battle (which is supposed to draw upon notes that Balzac made for a book he never managed to write). And yes I still have 19 more books on my challenge left to read.

(SRC/P) The Empire of Ice Cream, Jeffrey Ford (319pp) I fininshed the final story in this collection last night. Jeffrey Ford reminds me very much of an Eastern Board Ray Bradbury. he utilizes fantasy, narrative, semi biographical and experiential elements in many ways to render stories that are solid. And anyone who can make a creature the size of a sandflea that lives in children's sandcastles come across as solid is worth checking out. My favorite of his stories is Boatman's Holiday in which one possibility of how Charon spends his vacation is considered.

As I consume some delicious wasabi peas I once again reflect on what a fabulous SP I have.

I already mentioned the desert like trek I underwent to pick up one of her gifts. This time I was awakened by the oh so harmonious buzzing of my telephone (it's one of those 1920's intercom/phone set ups) and when I located the reciever and whispered hello I was met with deafening silence. Ah that is the supersecret code meaning "You have mail so come and get it 'cause it won't fit in your mail slot." Right -o! Down I went. Back up I came.

Carefully slitting the sides I was greeted with opalescent sparkling paper. Pretty! Must sit and admire the varying glimmers. I fought the mesmeric qualities and crinkled to the next layer. Patches of color and ..... 478 yards of Cascade Ecological wool wth 8 packages of Koolaid to dye it with (And she'll have fun fun fun in the sun...) But wait, I spy something pink and it's a BOOK :) Dogsbody by DW Jones. I love the cover! It reminds me of Chagall in some ways.

Hmmm and here's a patch of orange: a cute pocket sized book, literally, with an elastic band (Oh how I love elastic banded books they make me feel all Indiana Jones) with blank pages to take lots of notes in. And a mint green gel pen to use with it. It's the perfect size to keep by my laptop as I scroll through book blogs :)

Last, but certainly not least, but, most certainly all gone by now: Wasabi Peas!! (Wasabi, how do I love thee let me count the ways...)

Thank you Ellie! What a lovely and creative gift! ***CV

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Reading list? What reading list?

Last summer I discovered the works of Haruki Murakami. I then proceeded to read every one of his works that I could find. With the exception of a vintage book which only contains one story I haven't read, I have succeeded. I even purchased Kafka On the Shore as soon as it came out, and I'm eagerly awaiting his latest.

So all this is translation right? I'm sure there are many works of his I have not read as they are in Japanese. But maybe not. I read an interview in which he said that when he first started writing he wrote in English. This forced him to actually get the writing done. In his own language he was overwhelmed with the possibilities of word choice. (I can completely empathise. If only I knew another language well enough to atempt writing in it ;)

All this by way of saying I have just tonight heard about another author whose novel premises send me into chills of anticipation. I keep telling myself "Y'know the carry through could be as flat as the hunk in a smoke filled bar"....but but....

Apparently one of his novels has been filmed and is due to be released (In Australia I believe) sometime late this year or early next. By that time I intend to have read at least one of his works, A Kingdom Divided.

I should caution that when I read about his novel, The Book of Revelation, I immediately flashbacked to a film called the Butterfly Collector. The BC is one of those Hammer Films that ws truly psychollogically creepy. Its premise was of a man who "collected" young women much as he did butterflies and what happens to one of his prizes. (Another suitably creepy Hammer film is Straight On Til Morning. )

The author's name? Rupert Thomson. ***CV

Friday, July 28, 2006

Big Wig

Y'know? I'm not sure I can do justice to the place which is Colonial Williamsburg. I am so used to entering museums, recreations, olde townes that are so oversaturated with quainte and unique tchochkes that when I come upon a place that is simple, spacious, and unassuming, words fail me. But I shall try.

Colonial Williamsburg is an historic town inhabited by costumed educators and reenators. Thus as you walk down the streets you will pass by colonial men and women sitting on steps, gardening, drilling, weaving, blacksmithing, running a printshop, crocheting, haggling. It is in a way the Dickens faire without the folderol. (And might I say I loved the Dickens faire).

So one night my group attended a colonial dance and several in the group participated. Ah folkdancing. New fact for me was that not everyone danced at the same time. No. At the beginning of a dance one couple danced. Aferwards another couple danced. And so right down taht ranks of gentryism. Meanwhile everyone was watching the couple on the floor and critiqueing. Considering one was learning how to dance at home more often then not without a partner and that everyone was learning a variation of the same dance: well I think I might have been quite content to be a wall flower, oh yes indeed.

The folowing morning we went on a garden walk and learned about the "back workers", the "hand workers" and the "mouth workers". (I'll let you decide which were the gentry,the middle class and the poor of those groupings). Our final night we went on a lanthorn tour and were taken into various shops. New fact: most colonial women shaved their heads in order to wear the fancy wigs. As one companion said, "You mean Martha was bald when she slept with George?!"

A highlight of the tours was when I found a pile of cast off plants and when I asked if it was flax was told yes. Then I was told to "help myself" to the seeds.

Does anyone know how to grow flax? If not I'll just put it in a pot and see what happens ;)****CV

Recently Read Tales

(SRC/P) One Thousand and One Ghosts, Alexandre Dumas (156pp). This story seems to be Msr. Dumas' tribute to the Decameron, Canterbury Tales and other similar tale telling tales. A theme running throughout all the stories except, perhaps, the last) is whether what we know concretely through our senses is truly all there is to know in the world, or is the only way of knowing what is in the world.
(SRP) The Tarot Cafe, Sang-Sun Park (176pp) manga. The premise: a young woman named Pamela is a resident of London. Her business is psychic and she performs tarot readings for human and non human customers. As each reading unfolds her clients tale is revealed both through the cards and flashbacks. Drawn in the girl manga style (flowing hair, flowing clothes, very large eyes, and lots of flowers) I found the stories a tad too predictable and cliched for my tastes. The bits about the individual card meanings was nice. If you like the Aquarian deck then you will be pleased to know that this is the deck used in this volume.
Currently reading: A Perfect Red, Amy Butler Greenfield, and Asleep by Banana Yoshimoto. ****CV

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Up all night

I'm not sure if I will include a full overview in this post or not. But I will start at the beginning and when I reach an end I will then stop.*

Firstly let me say that if you love to travel and I mean be in the process of travelling not including the actual achievement of a destination, then you might like doing what I did. Red Eye baby all the way, with as many reconnections as possible. Thus I caught a 12:30 am flight, reconnected at Minneapolis at 5:30 reconnected, with a layover, in Newark at 10: 30 and arrived at 2pm. Please note that there were various time zones involved. When I arrived I went immediately to my shuttle as previously arranged: it was not there.

Ok. When will it be here?

In an hour.

Oh. Okay.

So I spend an hour in a very non strip mall airport (All airports are turning into strip malls have you noticed?) And may I say that gunpowder green tea tastes just like its name? Then I go back.

Here I am :)

The shuttle should be here in another hour.

Oh : (

(I would like to say at this point I was not cool and it had nothing to do with the 95+ degrees and equivalent humidity.)

I understand that this is a service. I understand traffic but I have been travelling and awake since 7 the previous morning; I don't know whether my accommodations will be easy or difficult to manage as I am a day early so could you please try and make it sooner then another hour?

They would try.

I brought all my stuff back into the airport and prepared to knit and read. I had just arranged everything when the shuttler came in and lo! There was a car available :)

Knitting is apparently the new cigarette.

After an hours drive in which the driver and I had quite the disscussion about education and the seemingly increasing tendency towards specialization at an earlier and earlier age I arrived at my accomodations.

Dorm rooms are spartan aren't they? I never knew. But then I had never been in one, no, not true. I had been in one, just not as a resident and not, how shall we say, in an unaccessorized conditon before. There is something so special about sleeping on a bed that gives off a report every time you lay down on it. That and the meat locker temperatures. I actually had to turn the heat on because of the refrigeration factor.

So, having spent the appropriate amount of time aquainting myself with my accomodations (20 minutes: unpack, make up bed, check out the communal showers and bathrooms) I left to tour the surrounding neighborhood. Found the bookshop and a cafe and a 24 hour minimart. Then I came back and crashed. Fortunately registration wasn't until 3pm the following day so I had time to adjust to the clock change.

Next: dancing the colonial way, or; My, what a nicely turned calf you have sir ***CV

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

I'm back

It is now approximately midnight VA time. That means that I have gone 40+ hours without sleep. This is not good. So, in the interest of better blogging, I'm going to save the upates for a time when the hardwood floor doesn't seem like a sumptuous feather bed. ***CV

Monday, July 17, 2006

new toy

(SRC/P) Anansi Boys, Neil Gaiman (334pp) Another trickster tale, this time with spiders. I actually picked this up last year in time for Mr. Gaiman's reading here in town. The event took place in a church and there was a line around the block an hour before anyone could go in. He gave a wonderful reading as usual and then there was a signing. So you would think that I would have started to read the story right away and I did. But then I stopped. Couldn't say why really. It's a good story, lighter than what I expected; but, this does not mean it's a romp through the veldt. No, there are nasty bits.

Think birds.

But Fat Charlie? He sounds just like Neil reads. That was lovely :)
The Empire of Ice Cream by Jeffrey Ford. I started it today but I'm only almost half way through: 170 pages to go. It's a collection of short stories. I particularly like Boatman's Holiday.
I checked the official list of prohibited items. Did you know you can take embroidery scissors on board now? That's how I understood the description. Knitting needles are okay too. There was no restriction or limitation as to kind or material.

I'm still bringing a SASE just in case though.

I am nearing the frenetic packingmustmakesureeverythingistakencareofwhere'smylist?! didImakealist?? IthoughtIhadmadealistandwhenexactlydoestheplaneleave? stage.

Golly that looks like a line of samskrit. Well, except for the fact that it's punctuated :) ***CV

Sunday, July 16, 2006

fox and spider

(SRC/P) When Fox is a Thousand, Larissa Lai (236pp) A trickster tale involving fox, an animal said to haunt the bodies of women. The story is told through three characters: fox, who is nearing her thousandth birthday; Artemis, who was adopted by a canadian family and is now living in Vancouver; Yu Hsuan-Chi a ninth century nun/poetess whose death sentence is still in question. Each character's section is marked by an image of either a fox, tree, or woman respectively. This is an unusual romance with fable aspects told in amazing language.
I started Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman and have five chapters left.
I'm almost finished with the third booga bag. The reason I wondered about the DPNs was that I still need to make the Icord for all three bags. It seemed like something good to do while reading on the plane. ***CV

Saturday, July 15, 2006

ploughing along

Dare I hope?

I just counted the books on my challenge "shelf" (others mught call it a stack on the floor) and it is 23. Be still my heart. I set myself the task of only having 20 TBR by the time I leave for my conference. This means if I read one a day I will be there. So exciting.

Now the question arises what to take with me?

Piers I think because I cannot finish it in time and meet by goal of 20. If I read Piers only for the story then I could but the problem is Piers makes me think. It's much too much a book of my fascination: Spirtual quest, medieval, absurd, surreal. So Piers will be tossed into the carry-on.

So keeping with that theme I thought I could also take The Doomsday Book by Connie Willis. I wanted to bring Haruki Murakami and the Music of Words. But then there is I, Claudius and Leave it to PSmith, Gargantua and Pantagruel, Red and Black, The Heart of Midlohian ... and really I should take some clothes.

But then maybe I won't get sent into that special line, the one where everything you own is searched, x-rayed and detailed, if I am carrying lots of reading material.

Do you think security would mind wooden 10.5 DPNs? ***CV

Friday, July 14, 2006


(SRC/P) Coram Boy, Jamila Gavin (328pp) This ia a YA story whose cover blurb refers to teh tale as Dickensian. Now that term, Dickensian, can mean many things to many people. When I started the story it did not match my definition other than being set within a certain time frame. Dickens' language and tone were not present; however, the motifs are, the social context is, and the conclusion is Dickensian. So the blurb could be applicable. I think it is the simplicity of the language that prevents it from being what I consider Dickensian.

Would I read this to a class of children under 12? Not likely. Much as I would consider carefuly a reading of David Copperfield or Oliver Twist. I am sure that many a child under 12 could understand Coram Boy on an intellectual level and some, perhaps, morally. But emotionally? There is much talk about disposing of unwanted living beings, and not only animals: it is a major premise. I would not have wanted some of the images I now have from this read in my mind as a young person.

Good read though for the HS set. I can see a lot of instructive conversations coming from the events in the story. Unlike Dickens there are no political overtones.

Jamila is non preachy and leaves the ultimate conclusion to the reader.
I have now started When Fox is a Thousand by Larissa Lai
I got up early today to go to an 8 o'clock class. It was with a teacher I really enjoy but who, at the start of summer I knew I could not do her classes. I've realized though that there is a certain pattern to the teachers whose classes I prefer. The teachers are not "kind", they have expectations which are challenging, but they are not aggressive with these challenges. One either does them or not; here is a way to meet the challenge; you may rest at any time. And on we go to the next posture.

I have after a class overheard comments such as "dictatorial", "bossy", and others. Perhaps that's true. However, an underlying premise of the practice is to do what you can do. So a teacher is teaching but the practioner is doing. A teacher can no more make you "do a pose" then they can make a young child read. It will happen when it happens and not before. Unlike a young child the pose may never happen. All bodies are not the same: This does not prevent a person from exploring their limits.

I think the bossy dictator may be the internal hitler, not the external yoga instructor. And if it is the external? You can always walk out. Capitalism in action. Of course, I have also been in classes where, after the first adhomukhasvanasana (downdog), a student has done savasana (corpse) for the rest of the practice.

Really, you can rest at any time: and one day you most certainly will :)****CV

Thursday, July 13, 2006


(SRC/P) The Sunbird, Elizabeth E. Wein (184pp) This is the third in a trilogy which began with The Winter Prince and A Coalition of Lions. Its premise is that there are two mighty kingdoms: one of High Britain and the other Aksum (of Ethiopia). When I first saw this series in SF at the Booksmith I was intrigued but never followed through. So here I am having read the final installment and would so like to read the others but cannot locate them. Oh well. The main character of Sunbird is called Telemakos which you may or may not recognise as the name of Odysseuss' son. (From the path of the story I would suspect that Telemakos' fatther and aunt are the main characters of vol.I and II respectively.) Similarly, Telamakos undergoes a voyage of discovery which involves, among other things, preventing the spread of plague due to black market dealings in the salt trade.

There is quite a bit of reference to classical greek mythology as well as british through names of people and places. I have a fondness for Ethiopian history so the dominant culture in this volume was much appreciated. Injera yum! Honey Wine yumyum. A shame they did not refer to it as Tej.
I started Coram Boy by Jamila Gavin today and began the third Booga. ***CV

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Mad hatter

(SRC/P) Howl's Moving Castle, Diana Wynne Jones (380pp) I read 70 pages last night and finished it this afternoon. I would really like to say I am most unhappy having read this book. Why? Because, dear reader, I still have 25 books tbr in my challenge before going on to anything else. This means I may not go and buy up every other DWJ book until after I have finished these 25 books. You on the other hand are not so chained are you? Hmmm? No. You may go out and indulge and laugh and have many a night of pleasant bibliomania. All I ask is: be vewy, vewy qwiet until I have finished my 25. Okay?

So yeah Piers is still languishing. I'll get there.

Got complimented on my sunglasses today. I think. But dude was seriously delirious if he thought a compliment like that was gonna make me stop and chat in a deserted area. My momma didn't raise no fools. Uhuh.

I decided to try crossing the Steel Bridge again but I haven't found the access to the upper deck from the east side so I did the train track path again. Kinda cool. The Wadi Anarak was in port. Its name was in both the english and arabic script. Looked like an oil tanker: golly, y'think? ;)

Geoffrey Chaucer tees are on their way to me. Yaaay!
The Leonard Cohen film is up next at the theater down the street from me.

Yeah. I got a theater three blocks away, a tea room two blocks away, and a Starbucks every other street away. Portland is apparently in the top three cities where you will not be unable to find a Starbucks if your life depended on it. Good thing bad thing you decide. I did come across this hilarious Starbucks info site where the employees rate the various products: no holds are barred and if you decide to do an about face well alrighty you just go ahead and do that. You will get called on it though. Yowza!
In the night there was the sound of shuffling and the whisper of leaves. In the morning: aaaaaaaah! Three new paper stacks!!!! Oh Calcifer, where art thou?***CV

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

burn the king

(SRC/P) The Perilous Gard, Elizabeth Marie Pope (280pp) Another varient of the Tam Lin ballad but set within the time of Queen Mary and her sister Elizabeth. Instead of Janet the young woman's name is Kate and there is a very logical approach to the Fey folk as well as the Teind. Cooly logical, which took a slight adjustment on my part as I had become used to the romantic embellished versions. I do recommend this tale if you are interested in retellings of traditional ballads. Ms Pope, according to the author blurb, is an Elizabethean scholar.
Still working on Piers the Ploughman. He has sicked Hunger on the slothful and has made his will. Let the pilgrimage commence.
I think paper breeds like hamsters. There is no other possible explanation. Ijust went through eight stacks and reduced them to three: which I need to go through again.
A trip to the department store. One I seldom brave. I emerged unscathed after spending close to thirty dollars on one container of foundation. This stuff better last a good long time. The counter lady was sweet though and gave me samples. So of course I had to say, "A goodie bag!"

Why yes I do know how old I am. Why do you ask?***CV

Monday, July 10, 2006

Palmers and Friars

Today I walked across the Steel Bridge. Or rather, I walked under it; or rather, below it and a little to the side. 'Cause if I walked under it I'd be on the train tracks and, according to several signs posted, that is not what one is suppose to do. As I was strolling along imagining how pretty this must be at night I heard the whirr of bicycle wheels and a voice saying, "Hey can you spare a dollar for a hostile?" Well that is what I heard, and the way the person kept looking back at me as he was riding away," Well can you?" It took me a bit to realise he had meant hostel not hostile.

As I left the bridge I entered a section of Portland that gave me the creeps. Okay, it's Portland. How creepy could it be? What I felt though was the same way I had felt while walking through the heart of the tenderloin at 2pm in San Francisco. Those who know know, those who don't: how sweet your life is.

I think next time I'll take the stairs to the upper deck and follow that route home.
(SRC/P) Look at the Harlequins, Vladmir Nabakov (253pp) Finished the story last night. A writer, his marriages and his loves and his neurosis. But written in Nabakovian linguistics. I liked the way it ended which I can't tell because then you would know what it was.
I started Piers the Ploughman by William Langland today. Holy Church and Lady Fee don't seem to like each other very much. Piers has two children. His daughter is called Do-as-your-told-or-you'll-get-a-good-hiding. And his son is named Always-give-way-to-your-elders-and-don't-contradict-or-maybe-you'll-wish-you-hadn't. Yes he has a wife: Dame Work-while-you've-got-a-chance.

Fun reading tonight whooowee! ***CV

Sunday, July 09, 2006


(SRC/P) The Shadow of the Wind, Carlos Ruiz Zafon (487pp) I expected a magical realism book. What I found instead was a soft noir that rested by the pool of magical realism and looked but didn't touch. It's a good story. I expect some of the bumps along the way are due to translation rather than the original writing. Images of skies pouring clouds, tears, blood, melting coins and showers of copper occur frequently, as do comparisons of objects to the colour ochre. It's a mystery with dames and young boys, fathers and father figures, the impetuosity of young love and the consequences that can arise to acting on emotions in a patriarchal society. There is a semi gothic hospice and a sadistic inspector. (After reading Love and Longing in Bombay I didn't find the inspector as shocking as I might have before I read Mr. Chandra's work.)Zafon has written at least two other books, and is now residing in LA. I look forward to the next translation of his work.
I am now reading Look at the Harlequins by Nabakov. JL Borges once made a comment along the lines that it was better to write a review of a non existant work than to write the work itself. All the plot and neccessary details without the time of actually writing the thing. For some reason I think he would have liked this book. :)
I completed the bag portion of two boogas. I'm now working on the handles.
I had 40 hits yesterday. I wonder why?***CV

Saturday, July 08, 2006

sheba queen of the night

As I was leaving the cafe today I overheard,

customer: I'll have a latte. My show is in an hour and a half.

barista: You're in a show? Where? What are you playing?

customer: Down the street. I play a gothic lesbian vampire.


Friday, July 07, 2006

Elephant yoga

Yay! the surround sound bad 80's music marathon has been silenced! (until the next sunny day, probably tomorrow, but still: Yaaay!)

(SRC/P) Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal, Christopher Moore (444pp) Boy what an amazing ending. Such a surprise. Who would have thought the great prophet Joshua would have ended up in Vegas!!! Or as any number of straight faced characters in the story would say: HAHAHAHA I'm just f 'n with ya. Jeez where's your humour. One of the things I liked about this story was the way it went from present day Biff writing his gospel then slipped into the story he was writing. So one moment we would be in a hotel with pizza on the way and a super angel guarding the remote, which is firmly locked onto Gereral Hospital, and the next moment we'd be in India rescuing children from a Kali sacrifice. Oh and the quotes from Dalmations, Excretions and Amphibians, were very informative. Not to mention the Kama Sutra episodes.Or the people who live in pits. Or the apostles who don't get parables, or the Yeti. But really it's all about the bacon.
Today I started The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon.
Social Distortion tomorrow night
An Inconvenient Truth is based on the book of the same name written by Al Gore. So for those of you who find a live version not as preferrable you might consider buying the book. In fact I may end up doing that as I find it so challenging to get myself to a theater. Even for Johnny Depp.
For those of you who are interested in CM books but aren't sure where to start (he's written 8 of which I have read 4) I'm not sure what to say. I started with Coyote Blue because I found it used, cheap, and it was about Coyote. That's pretty much a winner in my book unless it includes Raven or Monkey, then it don't have to be used or cheap :) I'd suggest looking on Powell's site and readng the synopses and just picking whichever piques your fancy. He writes in such a lighthearted and yet ironic voice that unless you don't like black humour you can't go wrong. Caveat: he has no real issues with talking about physical relationships.****CV

Thursday, July 06, 2006


Last night I started Lamb, The Gospel According to Biff,Christ's Childhood Pal by Christopher Moore. I'm halfway through. CM books are good to knit by I've found. They lay where they're supposed to.

It would seem that Biff invented the latte (with goat's milk), and sarcasm. And lines from star wars keep cropping up. (May the qi, chi, force, spirit be with you: especially when a hungry fallen angel demon named Catch is released from capitivity).
Apparently Pirates of the Carribean II is opening this weekend. Do you think that will displace An Inconvenient Truth? I still haven't seen the latter and wouldn't mind seeing the former.
I asked someone to show me the Icord technique. Aha! So that's how it's done! I'm a visual verbal learner: once I see it and can describe it in words I pretty much have it.
I found out how to get to Kinokuniya books. I see a journey in my future (and its name ain't Steve).***CV

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

seven foot......

(SRC/P) The Lust lizard of Melancholy Cove, Christopher Moore (304pp) In which a small northern california town located along the coast bearing a striking resemblance to .... oh never mind, is beset with medication deprivation, increasing levels of seratonin and consequent needs to express affection, a blues singer who may have waited at a crossroads or three; and a very virile sea creature who meets up with Kendra Warrior Babe of the Outland. 'Nuff said. Very funny read. Just like a 1950's shlock horror with antidepressants and the Delta Blues.

As I was reading this endearing and touchingly sensitive novel, at a table nearby, finances in the millions were being discussed nonchalantly as stockbrokering in a cafe is the only way to meet ones clients in a confidential manner. Right?
When I boarded the bus on my way to practice this morning the driver asked: Is that a yoga mat? But of course :)

Then at the studio my teacher was talking about the celebrations last night and mentioned she had been up until 2am because of firebombing juveniles. They had not only been setting off fireworks but had been throwing them at her house. Kiddies: Do you know where your mom and dad are?
Golden Apples of the Sun aka A Sound of Thunder, Ray Bradbury was on my list of reads for the KTC. However I read Golden Apples of the Sun years ago and I have 52 books on my list not 51 as I had originally said. What with the KTC books (which I hadn't originally included) I'm going to take off the Bradbury from my list.

I did start to read it as I hadn't quite finished my KSKS bag but was very close. Wow. I was reading a short story called the Black and White Game which I thought might be about chess. Silly modern me. It's about a small town baseball game in the 1950's. You guess what its about.
My order from Fearless Fibers arrived. I ordered two colors: Sunburst and Grape Pop. I love the Sunburst its so golden. I saw she has another up so I may order it once my paycheck arrives. The other color is blue. Huh. Grape Pop led me to expect purple for some reason.

I'm off to figure out how to do I-cord. I got the 10.5 Dpns today for it.*****CV

Tuesday, July 04, 2006


Such a wasteland in the cafes today. I guess everyone really was out in the countryside or in their backyards bbq'ing. S'okay. I managed to finish another SRC book while working on my KSKS bag.
(SRC/P) Something Rotten, Jasper Fforde (383pp) This is the fourth in the Thurday Next Series and was fun to read. At practice my teacher noticed what I was reading and we had a nice conversation about the series. I had to say though, in spite of the Cheshire Cat and other delightful characters in this episode, there was a more than usual amount of credibility stretching. At the start of any Thursday Next novel one has to check ones disbelief on page one. It will wait for you and be quite safe. But in this book I constantly felt that my disbelief was trying to make a run for it. Thursday was achieving super heroine levels that I felt were just "not done". Then the minotaur appeared "aha!" Okay now I can understand. Croquet matches ala rollerball, neandertals serving rabbit with crunchy green stuff sauce and a jabberwocky v tyranosuarus rex wrestling match. What more could you want? There's even a romance.

I have started The Lust Lizard of Melencholy Cove by Christopher Moore.

Happy Fourth of July***CV

Monday, July 03, 2006


(SRC/P) Uncle Silas, Sheridan LeFanu (444pp) Oddly enough I kept thinking of Wuthering Heights as I read this work. Oh the realtionships were not nearly (how could they be) so abusive, but the relationship between father and son did remind me of Heathcliff and his "paternal" tendencies. In comparison to the Monk, Uncle Silas is much more a mystery novel. There is a murder in a locked chamber - no way in and no way out unless of course.....and so our heroine must resolve the issue. The suspense lay in the who and how; not in, will our narrator survive. From the outset we know this is a recapitualtion of past events, that she is neither ghost nor asylum resident. If you like gothic try this one. It lacks the eerieness and exotic aspects of gothics set in southern Europe but it will do. Everyone should have a cousin Monica ;) and never a Madame with her great grinning mouth and bald head.
I read the second volume of Lupin III. Hmmmm. The language certainly changes. Lots more cussing and swearing going on. But there was more Jigen which was good to see. If anyone is familiar with Spy v. Spy there are major aspectsof it in Lupin III, There is also major objectification of women. In other manga: Hikaru is getting ready for the Pros test :)
An Inconvenient Truth is playing. Though tomorrow is a holiday I may try and see the late afternoon show.
I am now reading Something Rotten by Jasper Fforde *****CV

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Summer Reading Reads (a list)

(SRC/P)The Messenger, Lois Lowry (169pp)
(SRC/P) Ten Nights of Dream; Hearing Things; The Heredity of Taste, Soeseki Natsume(203pp)
(SRC/P) Invitation to a Beheading, Vladmir Nabokov (223pp)
(SRC/P) Goodbye Tsugami, Banana Yoshimoto (186pp)
(SRC/P) The Eye, Vladmir Nabokov (104pp)
(SRP) The Wrong Side of Paris, Honore Balzac (208pp)
(SRP/C) Wuthering Heights, Emily Bronte (337pp).
(SRC/P) Bad Seed, Ian Johnston (305pp)
(SRC/P) Elementals, AS Byatt (230pp)
(SRC/P) the Giver, Lois Lowry (179pp)
(SRC/P) Strandloper, Alan Garner (2oopp)
(SRC/P) Moominvalley in November, Tove Jansson (175pp)
(SRC/P) Thebes at War, Naguib Mahfouz (242pp)
(SRC/P) Love and Longing in Bombay, Vikram Chandra (268pp)
(SRC/P) The Book of Atrix Wolfe, Patricia McKillip (247pp)
(SRC/P) the Wild Ass's Skin, Honore Balzac (285 pp)
(SRC/P) Poison, Chris Wooding (273 pp)
(SRC/P) The Monk, Matthew Lewis (442 pp)

sub total 18 books and 4,276pp as of July 2, 2006

Saturday, July 01, 2006


After practice today I walked across the Hawthorne Bridge and was in time to watch it being raised. When I think of a drawbridge I think of the ones in Alameda near Pier29 in which traffic is prevented from moving on to any portion of the bridge until after it is completely set back in place. (I remember as a child having this clear image of a car caught in the center as the bridge slowly split apart, each half rising, and the car teetering precariously off the edge of one of the halves. I have no idea where this image comes from)

Not so here. The bridges are designed so that only a section is "lifted" allowing enough passage for the vessel -in this case a sailboat, to pass through. All pedestrian and vehicular travel is halted by crossing gates until the section is again lowered into place. So cool to watch. It's like viewing an elevator at a construction sight: all the housing is exposed.

Ever meet a hair stylist who won't listen to you? Ever experience the pleasure of "no tip for you"? 'Nuff said

Whoa the New Pornagraphers are very poppy. A little bit of Queen, a little bit of Wild Swans, a little bit of Rosemarys and some banjo.

I started Uncle Silas by JS LeFanu this afternoon. What do we have here: split personality governesses who like a nip now and then, and then go for a galavant in the graveyard. Okay. Much more polished writing than in The Monk. Just saying.

I also picked up:

Lupin vol. II, Monkey Punch
Hikaru no Go #7, Yumi Hotta
A Passage to India, EM Forster
The Chouans, Honore Balzac.
(It is said to be the first in his Human Comedy cycle)
I chose the Tarot of Prague ******CV