Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011 rewind.

2011 has come to an end.  good riddance, i say.  and since reminiscing is a byproduct of this time of year, here i go:

worst parts: daddy getting so sick, being too busy to do the things i love, hospitalization after hospitalization, constant stress, frustration, anger and sadness, hurting my wrist, sophie, the river running through my office, broken water main, losing the world series

best parts: sewing, austin with gabe, the return of the tomato, mineral wells with nick, the epic ice storm, the mercedes of sewing machines, beaver nuggets, tulsa with nick, ALCS win, making it to the world series, the galaxy edition of the fireman

it's been a pretty rotten year with a few good bits. i know that i have it better and easier than so many others, despite the year's tremendous hardships.  so now on to the resolutions.

in 2011 i resolved to:
1) work seriously on the bradbury project. maybe even go to ohio to see the manuscripts. (yeah, so i have reworked it over and over again.  i think i'm closer to being finished.  maybe)
2) master the better crochet hold (after the wrist injury of may/june, crochet has taken a backseat.  i can't really crochet much anymore, so this one didn't happen)
3) quilt.  for real. (yup.)
4) make grading deadlines and stick to them. (yup.)

in 2012 i will:
1) work seriously on the bradbury project. maybe even go to ohio to see the manuscripts.
2) learn the new sewing machine (emmie) backwards and forwards
3) cook more

best of 2011 (the best things i've encountered this year)

    * the body farm series - jefferson bass (total crap, but oh so fun!)
    * the maltese falcon - dashiell hammett
    * bossypants - tina fey
    * the passage - justin cronin
    * the hunger games trilogy - suzanne collins
    * the brief wondrous life of oscar wao - junot diaz   

    * mission bell - amos lee
    * 21 - adele
    * the band perry - the band perry
    * modern love - matt nathanson
    * barton hollow - the civil wars
    * four the record - miranda lambert

    * true grit
    * i am number four
    * horrible bosses
    * cowboys and aliens
    * the muppets

    *fox sportscaster during a world series game:  "pujols squeezes out number two!" (say it out loud)
    *gabe: "my prose will destroy you."

2011 in review (quotes from my dear bloggy blog):

janeiro: "i've decided to take some time off from the blogosphere."

fevereiro: "It is hard enough to get students to open their minds and discuss things rationally without the added pressure of deadly weapons."

marco: "i was lucky enough to be able to purchase a text that i have lusted after for several years now, the february 1951 edition of gold's galaxy science fiction magazine, and it arrived in the mail today."

abril: "i'm swamped--eternally busy with a very, very weak light at the end of the proverbial tunnel."

maio: "creativity is bursting out in all different directions--sewing, crafting, cooking--but not in the direction of the printed word."

junho: "in an effort to get over this terrible creative block, i'm cannibalizing facebook's 30 day song challenge here on my bloggy blog."

julho: "i'm listening the stan getz and joao gilberto on vinyl right now.  that's right.  be jealous."

agosto: "i was like them, and in the minutes after the attacks, i wasn’t."

setembro: "to all the writers out there--those who have been banned/challenged and those who haven't:  thank you for doing what you do.  we hear you.  we feel you.  we understand."

outubro: "beginning november 1, i will buy no more books for a period of six months."

novembro: "underlying all my english and literature nerdiness is an epic love of culture and social sciences. "

dezembro:"please don't judge all texans by rick perry."

Sunday, December 11, 2011

dear world,

please don't judge all texans by rick perry.  i promise that a lot of us are more open minded and less skeevy than him. 

we, too, think he's an idiot and are embarrassed that he is even associated with a state we love so much.


a mortified texan

Friday, December 2, 2011

one month later.

yesterday marks the one month mark on my buying-books-ban.  that’s right: i’ve made it a full month without purchasing, virtually or otherwise, a single book.

i have been tempted.  a lot.  but i have refrained, and i’m proud of myself.

this month, while devoid of book buying, has been full of text.  here’s a rundown of what i’ve been reading (and listening) to in the past month:

the passage – justin cronin
medium: audio
obtained through: library
impression:  pretty good.  the longest book ever, but pretty good.  an interesting take on the current cultural vampire obsession.  the next book comes out soon, and i intend on finding myself a free copy to borrow.

seriously, i’m kidding – ellen degeneres
medium: audio
obtained through: library
impression: eh.  i didn’t find it very funny, despite being narrated by ellen.  i lost interest and stopped midway through.

blood, bones, and butter – gabrielle hamilton
medium: audio
obtained through: library
impression:  the first part was great—sentimental and her passion for food and family really came through.  the rest left me pondering how someone who is so completely narcissistic warrants my time.  i don’t like this woman.


the city of falling angels – jon berendt
medium: audio
obtained through: library
impression:  really interesting, but a bit unfulfilling.  there were intensely interesting moments that captivated me, but there were some equally boring and drawn-out periods that i really wanted to skip.  i’m still kind of baffled at how berendt is able to pull all of the various stories together at the end, but he does.


water for elephants – sara gruen
medium: audio
obtained through: library
impression:  my opinion isn’t fully formed yet.  it was alright.  i don’t “read” a lot of contemporary fiction, especially not in the wishy-washy romance genre, so i don’t really have a basis for comparison.  i didn’t hate it, but i didn’t love it either.

the disappearing spoon – sam kean
medium: print
obtained through: already owned it – just hadn’t gotten to it yet
impression:  snooze.  i got three chapters in and quit.  mark kurlansky and erik larson this guy is not.  his information is dry, and his writing style is bothersome.  i’ll be selling this book to hpb when i’m able to purchase books again.


american on purpose – craig ferguson
medium: audio
obtained through: library
impression:  i’m almost done with this one and think it’s pretty good so far.  craig ferguson is freaking hysterical and his narration makes the book that much better.