Tags: neil gaiman: anansi boys

tell me a story [lizzieb]

Anansi Boys (Neil Gaiman, 2005)

Trickster narratives are not my cuppa, so I was all prepared to give this particular one a pass, but then musesfool wrote: "what I really, really liked about this book is that it's about stories, and how they get told, and what they mean, and how they can change your life." Now, that’s pretty much as close as I get to a bullet-proof kink, so I had to read it.

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dance of joy [kibarika]

definitively not dead

Managed to actually forget my wallet this morning (which I always worry I'm gonna do, but which I never actually do -- except, apparently, today).  Mommy spotted me money, though, so it was okay.  And really that was the low point of the day.

V!A e-mailed RMK on Friday saying, "Before leaving today, Elizabeth asked if she could leave next Friday, Sept. 30 at 4:30 p.m. to make a public transportation connection for a weekend trip.  She said she would shorten her lunch to make up the time."  I saw RMK's reply this morning: "YES, OF COURSE"  [Admittedly she was replying to an assortment of stuff in caps to make it stand out from the paragraphs of stuff to which she was replying, but the statement is much appreciated regardless.]  This relieved me tremendously.  And gave me considerably more faith that I would actually make it through this week.

Dunno if it was just because RMK was out of the office all day or what, but while Friday seemed nonstop, today felt positively slow.  I'm still somewhat anxious about tomorrow, but I think I'll be okay.  And I'm trying not to stress myself out about how I could have done this afternoon's phone interview better.

And on the way home it started raining (lightly) and I was happy.

And I caught the end of "Sideshow Bob Roberts" (scroll here) ♥

Oh, and I may end up having to read Neil Gaiman's Anansi Boys after all.  Trickster narratives are not my cuppa, so I was all prepared to give this particular one a pass, but then musesfool wrote: "what I really, really liked about this book is that it's about stories, and how they get told, and what they mean, and how they can change your life."
one girl in all the world

Wow; in 5 week's i'll be an alum.

Look at me and the lack of updating. I feel like i've been in liminal space recently -- sleeping in, waking up and wondering what day it is, lacking specific deadlines for schoolwork and thus being very lackadaisical in getting any of it done. I have gotten some work done this weekend, though. I find i like The Hours less than i did the first time around, which is sad. So anyway, updatey things.

"Fuckin' Rhinos." Oh, Skarda, how i will miss you.
Also: "Smith: where binary oppositions aren't all that opposed." (Though really, that's mostly only true of the gender binary.)

"You're writing and thinking well here." -Skarda on my Mary Reilly response paper

I think i've decided on my topic for my final Skarda paper (more pressing than most of my final projects as it's due April 22 at sunset) -- defending The Eyre Affair. This is not a huge surprise, since it was one of my favorites of the books we read in that class and she keeps saying it's not a very good book.

Dude, my "I'm done with ficathons for real now" fic? Has gotten praise from the recipient and other people. ::hearts:: (And i quite like the fic written for me.)

During Thursday night's poetry reading, Jane Hirshfield (the reading poet), noted that it was warm and extended her universal permission: that it's okay to nap at a poetry reading -- you just rest up and come back and there is another poem and eventually you get home and have insomnia. Ironically, hers was the first poetry reading in ages that i didn't doze off in.
Her reading kicked off the Women Practicing Buddhism weekend, but her poetry wasn't explicitly about Buddhist practice, which i appreciated.
I really liked the vast majority of the poems she read, though some of them were very powerful and moving at the time and then problematic upon reflection. Her poetry is very bare and evocative, and she uses interesting and compelling imagery and talks a lot about persevering through the pain of life.
She read us a haiku she had translated (i forget the original author) which she said changed her life. Basically it was: the wind blows terribly here, but the moonlight also leaks through the slats of the roof into this ruined house. (The idea that what lets the pain in also lets the beauty/joy in, and that some beauty/joy can't come in without some pain. And she also mentioned that the moon is frequently an image of Buddhist Enlightenment.)
In one of her poems she talked about washing one's face with cold water in the morning to practice making the unwanted wanted. In another she wrote, "The world asks only the strength we have. And we give it. And then it asks more. And we give it."
I forget if it was from her intro or from something she read, but she has a line about how "knowledge is erotic" because it inspires the desire to know more (intimately).
Commentary between poems: "People don't take up Buddhist practice because they're good at non-attachment."
In "Memories/Rwanda" she talks about how the river carries with decorum what it is given but then thet the river is sickened (continuing the multi-level meanings) and then the poem talks about being at a dinner table about to say something but deciding not to because it would be impolite and after she finished she said, "That poem is my penance for not having spoken at that dinner table."
In "The Poet" she asks that the poet have enough paper to make mistakes and go on. I really really liked that metaphor.
In "Milk" she talks about how wind without a hall howls in silence, and she talked about in times of tension, some things flare up and others dig down for the long haul (using the imagery of a volcano, i think). And concluding the poem -- i think it was her talking after she had finished the poem -- she said, "Every single glass of milk is suffering. I still drink milk."
"Tree" talks about a redwood growing next to a house and includes the great line: "soflty, calmly, immensity taps at your life."

At dinner one night last week, Ruhi talked about the Temple and Jesus, how Jewish practice is centered on the Temple and Christian practice is centered on Jesus, and how both include the idea the focal point coming again (the rebuilding of the Temple, the Second Coming of Christ) and it was an interesting conversation.

The Catholic Church already has married priests?

I'm tempted to do stuff like okcupid when i go back to Boston just to find people to talk to and hang out with. I suddenly understand the appeal of book clubs -- having a built-in group of people who have all read the same book and with whom you can talk about it.

firynze wrote: "Lastly, learn to spell (hell, just learn some English) before I answer your ad solely to find you and kill you in an inventive manner involving a typewriter." I am totally posting that in any online dating profile i ever make.

UPenn graduate admissions doesn't have voicemail. I did eventually get a real person, though. Decisions started to go out March 22. I haven't yet received one in my mailbox. I said i didn't mind knowing over the phone, and lo i am 0 for 6. So my brother and i did manage to each get rejected from our top choices.

I've been having a like-hate relationship with my hair all week. It was at that awkward hitting my shoulders stage, so obviously a trim was in order. However, short hair is not as wash-and-wear as long hair, though admittedly it takes less time to wash. Unless, that is, it's really short hair. So i've been feeling like Allie all week (which is disconcerting and wrongness) having moments of desperately wanting to hack off all my hair. I got it cut on Friday and it's longer than i had envisioned, so i'm still deciding how i feel about it. I hacked at the bangs some myself, which was obviously a bad idea, but it actually looks pretty decent. And i got a bunch of unsolicited compliments on it, which was nice.

On Friday, we watched the first disc of Firefly, whose episodes i haven't seen since they first aired (though i've seen all the other episodes 2-3 times). I forgot how all the dynamics are established from the very first episode, and how "The Train Job" despite being written in a weekend gets all the exposition out effectively in the first few scenes and also establishes all the dynamics. I think i have a soft spot for it because it was my intro. Other notes: (1) Joss continues to have masterful segue (2) wow the echoing themes, both within episodes and throughout the series (3) as on his other shows, everyone can be shipped with everyone else (4) Joss reuses his people like whoa, but we already knew that. Loves the show we does.

Saturday we watched disc 2, followed by a couple episodes of Wonderfalls because disc 3 of Firefly is all dark episodes (well, the first 3, so then we would have had to watch the 4th). We watched the runaway nun episode because Emma hadn't seen it before and then we watched the deportation episode and the Fat Pat episode. When i watched the episodes when they were airing (all 4 of them) i remember being surprised after each episode at the fact that i had liked it, because they always seemed from the ads unappealling. Watching this time 'round i seem to have less tolerance for Jaye, and her sister is actually growing me.

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