Ireadthereforeiam 2017: Chapter 6
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ETA: my latest beer tasting session with a friend this evening, to make my first picture something more...uplifting
Terry, our 11 year old cat, was put down this morning :(
It all happened rather quickly, and was rather a shock....Poor possum wasn't feeling well this weekend just gone, and a quick visit to the vet early this morning ended with him coming home for burial. Little Len has drawn on a box (coffin) and written a nice card for him and we will bury him in our garden. The kids have lots of observations and questions, some of which are sweet.
ETA: this is a pic of him sleeping! Not, you know, anything more permanent....
BOOKS COMPLETED 2017
1. Amongst Women by John McGahern 184p
2. A Beautiful Young Wife by Tommy Wieringa 123p (Tally 307p)
3. To Die in California by Newton Thornburg 288p (tally 595p) (published 1973)
4. Five Go Parenting by Bruno Vincent (an Enid Blyton spoof) 104p (tally 699p)
5. The Rehearsal by Eleanor Catton 314p (tally 1014p)
6. The Vegetarian by Han Kang 183p (tally 1,197p)
7. The Atomic Weight of Love by Elizabeth J. Church, 333p (tally 1,530p)
8. The Smell of Apples by Mark Behr 200p (tally 1,730p)
9. James K. Baxter Poems By James K. Baxter 103p (tally 1,833p)
10. Psychogeography by Will Self NF 255p (tally 2,088p)
11. Jernigan by David Gates 339p (tally 2,427p)
12. Men Explain Things to Me by Rebecca Solnit NF, Essays 130p (tally 2,557p)
13. A Boy's Own Story By Edmund White 249p (tally 2,806p)
14. The Light Between Oceans by ML Stedman 363p (tally 3,169p)
Discursive Psychology by Derek Edwards NF Introduction and chapter 1, 35p (tally 1,204p)
15. A Manual for Cleaning Women by Lucia Berlin Short Stories 399p (tally 1,603p)
16. City of Secrets by Stewart O'Nan 194p (tally 1,797p)
17. Explain Pain by David Butler and Dr. Lorimer Moseley, illustrated by Sunyata NF 133p (tally 1,930p)
18. The Yellow Wall Paper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman Short Story 17p (tally 1,947)
19. Hell's Bottom, Colorado by Laura Pritchett 143p (tally 2,090)
20. A Room of One's Own by Virginia Woolf NF 112p (tally 2,202p)
21. A Body Undone by Christina Crosby 204p (tally 2,406)
22. Ravelstein by Saul Bellow 235p (tally 2,641)
23. Grandad's Wheelies by Jack Lasenby (read aloud to W) 141p (tally 2,782)
24. Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami 388p (tally 3,170p)
25. We Should All be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie NF 52p. (tally 3,222p)
26. A Woman Looking at Men Looking at Women by Suri Hustvedt NF 504p (tally 3,726p)
27. Jazz by Toni Morrison 297p (tally 4,023)
28. Shooting Stars by Brian Falkner YA 349p (tally, 4,372p)
29. The River Between Us by Richard Peck YA 164p (tally 4,536p)
30. Grief is the Thing with Feathers by Max Porter 114p (tally 4,650p)
BOOKS COMPLETED 2017 (part II)
31. Finches of Mars, by Brian Aldiss (Sci-fi) 203p (tally 4,853p)
32. Astonishing the Gods by Ben Okri 159p (tally 5,012p)
33. A Year Without Mom by Dasha Tolstikova YA 167p (tally 5,179p)
34. Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie 275p (tally 5,454p)
35. Love That Dog by Sharon Creech YA 112p (tally 5,566p)
36. Secondhand Time by Svetlana Alexievich NF 496p (tally 6,062p)
37. Mortality by Christopher Hitches NF 108p (tally 6,170p)
38. The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro 361p (tally 6,531p)
39. The Iron Woman by Ted Hughes YA 136p (tally 6,667p)
40. Christchurch Ruptures by Kate Pickles NF 140p (tally tba)
41. A Three Dog Life by Abigail Thomas 183p (tally tba)
42. This is the Story of a Happy Marriage by Ann Patchett Essays 308p (tally tba)
2. Last Orders by Graham Swift $7.25 (new)
3. there is one more, I can't remember it! (what is the world coming to!!??)
4. Old Devils by Kingsley Amis &16.25 (new, an impulse book depo buy)
5. The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena (gift from neighbour)
10. The First Touch of Light by Ruth Pettis .50c
11. Le Bal by Irene Nemirovsky .50c (Aka The Ball)
12. If This is a Man, The Truce by Primo Levi .50c
15. Thirteen Ways of Looking by Colum McCann $2
16. Hillbilly Elegy by J D Vance (gift from mum)
17. Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day by Winifred Watson $2
19. The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov $22 (new) READING NOW
20. The Melancholy Hussar: and Other Stories by Thomas Hardy $5
21. No is not Enough by Naomi Klein birthday pressies!!
22. Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte- as above
24. Barkskins by Annie Proulx- as above
26. My New Zealand Story: Lighthouse Family by Philippa Werry $1
3. Hidden Figures
4. Boss Baby
7. The Shack
8. Adult life Skills
9. Despicable Me 3
10. 20th Century Women (International Film Festival)
11. Stalker (1979- International Film Festival)
12. The Beguiled
13. 48 Hour Film Festival, Heat 5 (12 short films)
Currently finishing off.....(pasted from last thread)
Oh, and I am nearly done with Secondhand Time, I may put this in a review, but what strikes me about the book is how much I am learning about peoples experience of happiness, and how it is not the material goods they have that gives them this, but the relationships they have. (With family, friends, society, the state, on so many levels.)
It is incredible that the Soviets were promised so much from the fall of communism, and that capitalism was supposed to deliver it all. I can't tell yet whether it was the broken promises that so deflated the spirits of so many, or if it was simply the lack of jobs/food/means of survival.
Rugby's Great Split, by Tony Collins. A sociological exploration of rugby league, for my research.
Just peeking around the corner and looking for a cozy chair by the fire. Is it safe to come in?
I'm so sorry about your kitty. That's really rough. Cuddle the kids and enjoy some happy memories. We'll be thinking of you.
I'm so sorry about Terry, Megan. My condolences to you all on the sudden and shocking loss. How sweet of Lenny to decorate Terry's box and write a card for him. It's so nice that Terry will continue to live with you in your garden. *hugs*
So sorry to read about Terry the cat. He looks lovely in that picture.
I was impressed to read about the book buying self- control. I reassure myself I am supporting local bookshops. Not sure how this applies when I buy when I am travelling though: local to someone else, perhaps?
>7 nittnut: yeas, safe! And the fire is lit, on account of a forecast 0 degrees overnight tonight. As in freezing.
>8 cameling: thanks Caro. He was buried in the garden this evening, and the kids made a lovely floral arrangement over the top, and a headstone (of sorts). They are using all the "correct lingo", such as 'celebrating his life' etc., they must be learning that at school....
>9 charl08: Len wrote a lovely story about him today at school . It read...
"To Terry. I Miss you. It was rainy today. From Lenny".
Omg, that is cute. They are traversing the grief path own their own ways. Len is all about the drama, and W is more about the quiet reflection.
Local book stores are to be supported, imo, no matter who they are local to :)
I'm so sorry to hear about your family kitty, Terry. It sounds like Wilbur and Lenny are doing as well as you can expect. It's never easy to lose a pet who's been around your whole life. Hugs to all.
Oh, Megan, I'm so sorry about Terry. That's such a hard thing to go through.
I'm sorry to hear about Terry, too, Megan. 11 isn't that old at all..... We bury our kitties in our yard, too.
Only 17 books so far this year - congratulations.
So sorry, Megan, to read about Terry. He looks sweet at the picture.
Sympathy to all of you for the loss of Terry. Giving us an opportunity to get through a death is yet another lesson our dear furs give us. It's not easy.
I wish I were here more often, but unless you're just beginning a thread as now, I'm just too intimidated to try to catch up. Then too, I'm not here often.
Anyway, love to you, Megan.
Ah, sorry to hear about Terry, Megan. I'm sure he was a good pal for everyone.
Happy New Thread, my friend.
>1 LovingLit: I'm SO sorry, Megan! I know how sad you are feeling today. RIP Terry. xo
>13 rosalita: I brought him home from work one day, as someone had come in with a box of kittens. It was pretty funny, I put my hand in to get one of them out, and came not with the only one that wasn't bouncing off the walls!
>14 scaifea: We certainly weren't expecting it. It was a case of a very expensive surgery with no guarantee of that being all he needed, or, the alternative. Tough call, but the right one for us.
>15 karenmarie: He was the fluffiest thing! his tail was black/brown and looked like a foxes tail. A distinctive cat in the neighbourhood.
>16 FAMeulstee: He only ever came inside once one or both of the kids were in bed (or out). So all his in-house napping was done in the evening. Of course, by the fire was his top spot.
>17 LizzieD: Aw, thanks :)
I am not one to lie to the kids (which has got me in trouble before!) so the news was broken swiftly and perhaps bluntly. I was cuddling Lenny last night and he was worrying about Terry, I said "Terry'll be alright" which was met with: "How can he be alright!? He's dead!". He has a point! (Of course I had meant he's not suffering...)
>18 jnwelch: The kids did love him- even if it wasn't reciprocal. :)
>19 drneutron: Thanks Dr N! And for adding me to the thread book ;)
>20 EBT1002: Thanks Ellen :)
I was late to a meeting after having been at the vets with him, and apologised when I walked in. I said I'd had an emergency visit to the vet. The group just looked at me, so I blurted out "it didn't end well".
I don't know what I was thinking, but it was actually quite funny upon reflection. In a black comedy kind of way.
Congratulations on your new thread.
Sorry about losing your cat but Lenny's little homage is priceless and touching in such an unadorned way.
Happy New Thread, Megan. Sorry to hear about your loss. I am sure Terry brought a lot of joy to the family.
Looks like the books are treating you well.
Too sudden and too young; I hate it when that happens, and it has happened to several of ours--cancer and kidney failure. I'm sorry for your loss.
>23 PaulCranswick: the kids really do come up with some gems. It certainly is refreshing.
I remember my niece aged 3 at a funeral- or more appropriately, a tangi, the Maori funeral. My sister had baked a cake to take for the food part of it, and because my niece was little she associated cakes with birthdays, so when the tangi was starting (they are multi day affairs, with people coming and going), she started singing happy birthday to you!!! It was met with smiles all around.
>24 msf59: He was an acquired taste, was our Terry :)
Nobody loved him like we did. My dad was taken by the kids straight to see him (just prior to burial), and he came in to us after and said- that is the closest I have ever ben to Terry! He would always scarper when anyone was around.
>25 ronincats: It is a loss, and I haven't broken the news to the neighbours yet either- Terry used to spend a lot of time in their garden in the sun. They named him Fat Louie before finding out he was ours. I corrected them in that he wasn't fat, he was fluffy!
>26 Berly: Thanks Kimmers :) The kids are a bit sad still. Lenny particularly vocally. And mostly at bed time. It is good to talk about it though, and I have been addressing his concerns, mainly by agreeing with him that it is sad, and that we will miss him, but that we will always love him and have our memories of him.
corrected them in that he wasn't fat, he was fluffy!
LOL .. I love that. My mom says the same thing about her hefty Shetland Sheepdog, Bruno.
>28 cameling: He wasn't hefty, he was big-boned!
He was srsly fluffy though. One gigantic fluff ball.
Megan, I'm so sorry for your loss and for your family too. I know what a big part our fur baby's play in our lives. It is so difficult for kids to understand , at least initially. Big hugs.
Hi Megan, so sorry for your loss my dear, Terry looked a lovely lad and he will be sadly missed as they do play a big part within our families. Sending love and hugs dear friend from both of us.
>30 vancouverdeb: Lenny asked me today if I was still sad about Terry. I said, yes I was. He talks about him every day.
>31 johnsimpson: Thanks JS!
>32 LizzieD: lol. My friend has 'fine-boned' kids, and when she was helping to wash Lennys' hands, she said it was really nice to feel a sweet wee podgy hand, and that it reminded her of when her kids were toddlers. I knew exactly what she meant...squidgey hands are sweet to squeeze :)
>33 nittnut: he he. My mum used to tell me I was big-boned. I didn't think that was really very good at all! I do have broad shoulders, I suppose...but one thing I know I'm not, is fluffy!
>34 LovingLit: Your mum must be teeny, because I would not have called you big-boned. Lol
I loved it when my kids were little and chubby hands and cheeks. So squishy and adorable. Now they are all arms, legs and feet, and teeth.
>1 LovingLit: I'm just now reading your post. I'm so sorry! We all love our fur babies.
Sorry to see the very sad news as the opening post to your new thread, Megan. to lose a family pet so suddenly like that is hard. Sympathies on the loss.
>35 nittnut: broad shouldered maybe? Mum always said, "you should have been a swimmer!"
>36 thornton37814: Thanks :) We do miss him, and his fluffiness.
>37 lkernagh: Thanks Lori. The kids haven't really been asking about a kitten too much, but I heard my lovely other say something like "maybe we'll get another cat one day." Which I thought was very dangerous territory to be getting into as we had thought not to get another!
Pretty book haul!
The Spare Room by Helen Garner (hardcover, free from the 'free table' at university), and The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov ($24, new). So pretty, both of them!
In other news, I was trying to remember which book(s) I am reading last night, and I couldn't remember ONE OF THEM! Sad.
>39 LovingLit:. Ditch the books you can't remember and start in on M&M with me!! LOL. Glad you managed to find a copy. : )
>40 Berly: Oh oh oh! Was that an August thing? *off to find the thread*
I think you must have subconsciously influenced me! You and Bowie, oh, and the lat book I read mentioned it too! It was so on the cards :)
Howdy, Megan! I intended to stop by yesterday and the day got away from me. Hope you enjoyed the weekend. Getting any reading in?
And hooray for snagging a "pretty" copy of The Master and Margarita. I just finished the book yesterday. It is a one of a kind novel, that is for sure. Glad I finally got to it.
Sorry about the loss of your kitty. Hope you and the kids are doing ok!
Nice book haul. I liked The Spare Room and haven't got the the M and M yet.
>42 msf59: I was very distressed this weekend, Mark, to not be able to remember what book(s) I was reading!! I actually panicked a little bit. So to remedy that I went to bed early last night and read M & M. I was so dedicated (read: was unable to sleep once awoken at 1:45am) that I read a whole chapter in the wee small hours as well!
>43 ChelleBearss: Little Len keeps talking about Terry (the cat), but W is more about getting a new one :)
>44 Berly: I had an Anton Checkov book too that I was cradling in the book shop, but I put it down in favour of The Master and Margarita. My subconscious wouldn't let me away with not getting it!!!
>45 nittnut: It is a beautiful new book, and I don't think I have read her before (maybe a short story collection). I might lend it to a friend first, as she borrowed and loved another Helen Garner book of mine.
Hi Megan, sorry about the above message, I posted to the wrong person because I am at that funny age my dear. Hope you and the family are well my dear and that you are having a good week dear friend, sending love and hugs to you all.
Sorry to hear Lenny hasn't been so well. Good to read the M & M enthusiasm around the threads.
Sorry to hear that Lenny is not feeling well. It's awful when our kids aren't 100%, isn't it?
I hope that you've remembered details about the books you're reading.
(W sounds like my daughter in a way - when she was little we got her 2 kittens. After a while, she asked if she could have a dog when the cats died. It took 12 1/2 years for the first one and 18 1/2 for the second one. Now that she's 24, has an apartment, and has done some dog sitting, she's back to wantng a cat.)
So glad that Lenny is better! He's darling getting his award (Congratulations, Lenny!), but he does look a little peaky.
I'm with Jenn. I was impressed with The Spare Room and haven't tried *M&M* yet. I will though.
Your 2 lads become more unique the more they age ..... interesting to watch from the keyboard.
Hope all is well you end
>52 LovingLit: Hooray for Lenny and his rugby award! Glad he is feeling better too.
Happy Weekend, Megan. Hope you can find some downtime and cuddle up with the books.
>53 LizzieD: well, a 6 days after the above photo was taken he was rocking out at the school disco :) So he is recovered.
>54 kidzdoc: Thanks Darryl, good health certainly makes life around here more simple.
>55 roundballnz: They are the veritable chalk and cheese. My mum jokes that they must have different fathers!! (btw, they don't.)
>56 charl08: He was chuffed, but somewhat miffed that his brother's award came with a trophy. Yikes talk about sibling rivalry.
>57 msf59: This weekend was a movie weekend actually! Books were read, but more time was spent watching films.
This weekend in three parts
Part I- sport and missing jewellery
After a rugby league event was cancelled due to rain (so many weekends have been rained off this winter!!!), the kids managed to wile away the morning by engaging in pushing each others buttons and generally scrapping and fighting (*sigh*). We took them out to watch the game that wasn't cancelled, and in the cold cold air, walked home briskly to keep warm. Me and Lenny were holding hands and seeing if we could squeeze some warmth into each others hands, which is probably when my we-never-had-a-wedding ring fell off. :(
It was a simple silver (coloured) ring that he had given me from a Christmas cracker as a joke when we had only been together a few weeks. So although it will be worthless to anyone who finds it, it was so special to me. So I am bummed.
Part II- escaping the chaos
Lat night I was invited to the screening of a friend's short film. Every year they make one as part of the 48 Hour Film Festival, where, like you might guess from the title, people are tasked with producing a finished film in one weekend. The were hilarious, and clever, and really fun to watch. And my friends one was really cool....I hope they get through the heats! In addition to that, I tagged on a feature length film with other friends before! (Lucky me, it was a dream afternoon/evening!!) I saw The Beguiled, which was fun to watch, but I had some problems with the characters' motivations.
Part III- Fathers Day
Off today (after the father in the house has had his sleep-in) to head to Orana Wildlife Park to see the orangutans! They are the newest animal to the park and I have ben looking forward to seeing them for ages. We all made cards for the father in the house, and I have been directed by Lenny to "let Dad do whatever he wants today", and that "he can sleep in til midnight if he wants to, cos its Father's Day" :)
>60 scaifea: >61 ChelleBearss: Cancel that! I found the ring!!
I was explaining in great detail to my lovely other about how I had walked the footpath and not found anything, and mid-sentence I said "and the ring-.........omg, there it is!!!!"
Lol. Turns out I had never even worn it out that day (which is so super rare I still can't believe it).
Ok peeps, my sister has finally got with the programme and is on LT and in the 75 group!
We went over the ropes this afternoon, so please do go on over to her thread and welcome her.
Lovely to catch up and good to see Lenny back in good form.
>63 LovingLit: Off to see!
Hey Megan! I'm so sorry to read of your furry friends passing. We've brought both of our cats home after they'd gone, also in shoe boxes and buried in the back yard and marked with a Spongebob pin wheel. It's actually a comforting thought that somehow they are still with us.
Glad the ring was never lost.
Your sister visited my thread and I was wondering if she was a friend/relative - was over visiting on Paul's thread, saw YOUR message about your sister, came here, and confirmed that TrizzyS is your sister. 'Way cool.
So glad to see that you found your ring!!
Off to see your sister now
I'm woefully behind the times, but that just means I got to experience the sadness of you losing your precious ring and the joy of your finding it again all in the course of, like, 90 seconds. So that was awesome. :-)
Now I'm off to meet your sis!
Megan--Well, looks like I haven't been here in a while...sorry. Yay for the rugby awards!! Boo for the lost ring. Yay for the found ring! Great Father's Day advice from young Lenny. Off to meet your sister! : )
>66 avatiakh: Cheers, Kerry.
>67 Carmenere: I'm glad we buried Terry in the back garden, the kids go and check the grave from time to time.
>68 karenmarie: You pieced together the puzzle! There aren't many of us from Christchurch NZ here on LT, let alone in the 75 group.
>69 ChelleBearss: Hi Chelle, I hear you got 6 hours sleep recently, in a row! Nice.
>70 scaifea: Pretty good ay! I was so shocked that that was where it was. I was convinced it must have come off when me and Lenny were playing squeeze-each-others-hands-as-hard-as-possible. Never make assumptions huh!?
>71 rosalita: The ole 90-second turnaround, what a rush!! LOL.
I totally brought a friend down the other day after he was on a high, by replying to his request of me "how are you?" with: "well, I lost my wedding ring, and my cat died". The poor guy! That'll be the last time he asks me how I am :)
>72 Berly: The way it reads, my life is a roller coaster of emotions! And now that I think about it, that's not far off!
How are u ? always reply "bunch of fluffy ducks" .... breaks the convention
Excellent news on the un-lost ring ( yes that is a word)
>75 roundballnz: Well, as it happens, I am a bunch of fluffy ducks! Since you asked...
Work and study are proving very rewarding enterprises, and parenting, well...that is still happening ;) (I jest. Of course!)
>76 LovingLit: jesting is good can u juggle? of course you can:)
Fluffy ducks reply could possibly be interpreted as: A very sarcastic ( check tea levels before coming nearer) B Taking the piss .... or C is estacially happy run for your life, i.e. have done something may explode literally or not.
I have RL bookclub tonight. I have missed the last 3, (having never missed one in 3 years) and we only hold them every 6 weeks!
The initial meeting I missed was through no fault of my own- I was left off the email list, and then as I missed that one I wasn't privy to the next meeting date/time, so when that rolled around, the short notice meant I already had plans, and then the third strike was my lovely other had a meeting and I had no babysitter.
We'll see how tonight goes, but already 2 have cancelled, so there might only be 3 or 4 of us. But I do have a lovely plate planned....sweet pastry cases willed with butterscotch custard, topped with a strawberry and a shard of dark chocolate. YUM!
>80 LovingLit: well even if book club is subpar those pastries sound worth the trip!
>81 roundballnz: They were delicious, even if they were assembled rather than home made :)
>82 msf59: Book club was baby-focussed last night.....one person attending has a 2 month old and the other is very pregnant. So the discussion was a lot about babies ;) (memory lane for me, people!). It was nice to catch up though, and we ate like kings.
>83 ChelleBearss: The port was nice too! Ha ha. I ate the leftovers on the way home so that was good too.
>85 Berly: yeah well, its pretty short on actual book talk though, so.....
Sounds like a good meeting in every other way, Megan. What's the next book?
>87 charl08: I suggested we all read Murder on the Orient Express to see the film when it is out in November. Not sure if it was taken up or not!?
But I will definitely be seeing it :)
Ooh yes. I have seen stills of Dame Judi in that and she looks rather wonderfully stylish.
Today I have 4 meetings around town...at the mo I am killing time in the city centre before meeting a friend for coffee (yes- this counts as a meeting) and then am heading off across town to do an interview for my research. My 17th interview!!! I hope to interview 6 more individuals, which will bring me to a total of 25 interview participants. (If you're thinking *hey* the maths doesn't add up, its because some interviews had more than one person in them)
Then the transcribing will begin in earnest....
>93 ChelleBearss: they did thanks Chelle. You just never know with traffic (in our CBD, the under-road services are still being reconstructed post-earthquake) so it can take 20 minutes or 40 minutes to get across town.
Yesterday I managed to get to each place I needed to be juuuust fine. And got shouted 3 coffees! Not bad going, I say. I paid it forward by shouting a friend drinks and fish and chips for tea after the busy day.
And today involves birthday party taking for Len, and then off to a friends small farm for the night with Len. We will help out with the horses, have dinner (I'm taking dessert) and then watch a film together. Lenny gets to choose, so he will have three that we all approve of to select from :) (one of which will probably be Zootopia).
20-40 mins across the CBD from an Aucklander that sounds a dream ..... Have a great night
>94 LovingLit: Reminds me of our lovely holiday in NZ and our meet-up in CCh. I really must come back soon. Is the Container mall still intact?
Have a wonderful weekend, Megan.
Sounds like your interviews have picked up, after those first ones gave you the slip, Megan. I hope the evening with Lenny and friends went well. Helping with the horses would have been a dream for me when I was a kid!
>95 roundballnz: lol, I was referring to 20-40 minutes across the whole city!!! Gotta love Chch.
>96 PaulCranswick: The container mall is transformed into something more permanent now, so is a construction site mostly. But other pockets have opened up in other places with cool little shops and restaurants and cafes, so that is great (particularly the cafes, which I love).
>97 rosalita: Len loved helping with the horses. When we get there he always asks, can I help shovel the poo now? And with three horses, there is always poo to collect!! Perhaps disturbingly, he can even identify which poo is whose now :)
I was content to stand and fill the water trough with water from the hose and then go and read my book inside.
Laughing at the Lenny and horse poo story. I think it would be great fun to re-read Murder On The Orient Express before the movie! Hope that turns out to be the next bookclub read.
>92 LovingLit: "Then the transcribing will begin in earnest...." Oh boy, I remember that part of dissertating.... it was a challenge!
Okay, I'm tempted to ask how Len can tell the difference between the three horses' poo, but.... well, I will just resist. I'll leave it at that.
Like Julia, I'm glad to experience the loss and the finding of the ring all in one fell swoop!
By the way, thinking about your dark humor moment the day you lost Terry....
Back in 2011 when I lost my Edgar, quite suddenly and unexpectedly (he was only nine years old!), my colleagues at work knew that he had been in kitty hospital and that we had been worried.... We had to say good bye to him in the wee hours of a Saturday night and I went to work Monday morning thinking I had worked my way through my grief on Sunday. First thing that happens is that one of my favorite staff members warmly asked "Ellen, how is Edgar?" I burst into tears. She was mortified, poor thing, although she certainly had done nothing wrong. A couple of years later that moment came up in a larger conversation and she said "I will never forget making my boss cry like that." Sweet.
Keep taking good care, Megan. I hope the rest of the interviews went/go well and that you have a favorite tea and biscuit handy to help with the transcribing.
Secondhand Time: The Last of the Soviets by Svetlana Alexievich (470-ish pages)
This is a unique book- the collected voices of many Russians, over many years. The Author has collected peoples' stories told in interviews, and edited out her own voice, which has resulted in a story of Russia and the former USSR that is very personal and deep.
I am struck of course by the violence and depravity so many describe, which, although must be told as is intertwined with so many aspects of recent history of this place, is just so....visceral (is that the right word? I'm not sure). The violence is back to back with hardship and struggle. It's hard to read. But what I am getting from this book is a real sense of how a nation of people have had the whole basis of their identities changed- when socialism was ousted, and capitalism arrived.
The propaganda of Soviet times can come across as cheesy from the outside (how could they all fall for that? etc.) but when you read the heartfelt accounts of people who believed in their leaders, believed in the power of the people etc, you really see how much it meant on a personal level to have that collective identity.
I still) haven't properly formulated my thoughts on it yet, but there is also a lot in there about happiness: how it can be achieved. The fundamental ingredients for it seem to be human connections and a plan (or maybe, hope, or a common goal or purpose). And some accounts in this book about Soviet times certainly show that this is at a loss under capitalism.
There is so much in this book to think on!! I can thoroughly recommend it.
Eta: I put a slightly amended version of this review on the book page! For once :O
Mortality by Christopher Hitchens (109p)
I have wanted to read this author's memoir- Hitch 22 for a while, but couldn't face its sheer size. So this little book was appealing on a day when I had an hour spare at the library while the kids were at a birthday party. I read the first third in that hour, and the second and third thirds that evening into the night.
It is his farewell book, after his diagnosis with cancer in 2010. He ruminates on the way cancer can't just exist in a person, it must be "battled" (I have often though about that too, as if it is an invading army), he addressed the hypocrisy of faithful people praying for him and admonishing him (to both be well- and to 'turn to god' before dying- he is more than happy for anyone to pray for anything, but doesn't want them to think they are doing it for anyone else but themselves, in an effort to assuage their own conscience). All sorts of other religious contradictions are pointed out, but mainly, he is thinking about his impending death.
After reading it I am left wondering where all those incredibly rational arguments he had have gone!? And whether anyone out there is enough like him to go calmly into a religious debate with a Bishop and come out friends with them! He was really one of a kind.
>99 Berly: I know! I reckon too :)
But seeing as they dint really actually love books, I reckon i'll be hard pressed if anyone reads anything before next book club. #Ineedanewbookclub
>100 EBT1002: The three horses poo are distinct in that- one's is big, one's is small, and (this one is a cheat really, but as he's only 6 we will forgive him) one's is in another paddock :)
Cheat or not, he is quite proud to announce whose it is upon collection.
We had a good meal, and a good laugh and watched the Jungle Book (the newest Disney version), so it was a lovely night!
Re: pet grieving, and grieving in general, you can never tell when the tears are going to sneak up on you! I guess its just a case of you keep crying til you stop.
Catch up time - book club, horse poo, and bunch of fluffy ducks. What book was actually discussed at your book club meeting? You may have mentioned it earlier and I didn't grok.....
The horse poo identification methods made me laugh, thanks for that Megan.
I've read about Hitchen but not read anything by him. Not sure why - your comments make it sound intriguing.
Have loved both the Alexievich books I read. I bought the one about women in the war but my dad has taken it to read and I've not had the heart to claim it back.
>101 LovingLit: Very good review, Megan, it was one of my top reads this year.
The human connections and a common goal/plan stood out for me, our society of individualism / capitalism has lost all that.
>104 karenmarie: Well, in our bookclub we don't all read the same book. Often we have a theme and read a book of our choice on that theme, but lately no one has even really been reading and all we do at BC is chat about our lives. (hmph! I wanna talk about books!)
I suggested we all read Murder on the Orient Express and see the film in Nov, and some seemed to think this was possible ;)
>105 charl08: Now you have reminded me that my dad has my copy of This Little Life (no, that's not it), My Little Life? (nope) This Life. Sheesh, I can't even remember it now. I am going over to his place at the end of the month so will to an inventory of his bookshelves then and take back all that are mine. He then usually does a stock take of my suitcase in case I have taken more than I should!
I'd certainly like to read more of hers.
>106 FAMeulstee: I still need to corner my supervisor and get him on board, it is a book with so many thinking and discussion points!
Hi Megan! I hope you've had a good weekend and a good start to the week. I've popped over and said Hi to your sister. :)
I think L has a very scientific method of poo identification and should be respected. *grin*
>107 LovingLit: A book club where you don't talk about books? That would annoy me
>108 nittnut: My sister is too netflicted to come visit us on LT! Humph. ;)
>109 roundballnz: I do like his lines of argument, generally. I would like to hear his justification for the invasion of Iraq though, which he apparently supported.
>110 ChelleBearss: It annoys me. Believe me! But as an opportunity for anthropological study of a group that are very different to me, it is fascinating. Perhaps I should write a book.....
Sounds good, Megan - to write a book on the inner workings of various book clubs. Ours is 20 years old and settled on its current membership in 2006. It's fun to watch the group dynamics at each meeting.
>111 LovingLit: You should! Or at least a paper!
I keep telling Nate that he should start writing a book of the things he hears at work (police). He comes home with some fun stories. The town he works in has a big drug problem so some of the impaired people that he arrests are not in their right mind and say some pretty interesting things. One guy thought he was "strong like The Hulk. (but less green)"
>112 karenmarie: >113 ChelleBearss: it reminds me of that book the NYC mother wrote about the mothers group she attended in a wealthy area. Undercover mom!
My lot are mostly 5-10 years younger than me, and are all professionals, mostly legal. They just have different lives than me. One time one woman was (jokingly perhaps) complaining that she had to spend her whole annual bonus on re-roofing the house painting the exterior. I was like- dude! If you get enough from a bonus to do all that, you are in no position to be complaining!
Chelle, that is funny about Nate's job. Here we had an ad campaign to recruit people to the police, and the tag line was "Get better work stories"!!!
Good news! I am off this weekend for a work trip.
You may remember when I had 2x work trips cancelled earlier in the year. To report towns, to do customer surveying, with a night at a hotel and entry into he hot pools to sweeten the deal. Well, this time I am booked at the hotel, so am pretty sure it will go ahead. YAY!
Dont tell my lovely other, but I am really looking forward to having the whole bed to myself, and watching TV in bed, and maybe even some interview transcribing on the side....(or just reading!!?). I may be trying to fit too much into my short time, but I was hoping for a walk as well....I'll probably flag the hot pools to fit in all my things...or not.
>115 LovingLit: Mum's the word, Megan! Time alone for a working wife/mom is precious, and I hope you enjoy every single minute of it. I used to love business trips too for that very reason.
>115 LovingLit: Oh that looks lovely!! Enjoy the hot pools and bed to yourself!
>115 LovingLit: Hope the trip actually happens!! That looks like a tough place to work, but someone's got to do it!!
Fingers crossed for the trip. :) I hate when my husband travels, especially as he's been traveling WAY too much lately, but the bed to myself, that part I love. Shhhhhh.
>116 karenmarie: I went I experienced. I enjoyed.
I was in bed at 8pm Saturday night reading, and my boss gave me schtick for it too :)
>117 ChelleBearss: I ended up leaving the hot pools once I had finished surveying, and hit the hotel room. It was super relaxing, and the bed was a mega king bed!
>118 Berly: It was a good gig actually. Most people were very relaxed after their hot pooling and were obliging when it came to completing the survey. I got so many completed I think my boss was suspicious!! As if I would bin them!!! Sheesh.
>119 nittnut: I wont tell a soul. Other than our good friends here on the *internet* ;)
>120 FAMeulstee: thanks! I did. I read 120 pages of The Buried Giant and was quite into it. But i had a yucky Thai Beef Salad, which was very disappointing. I should know by now that the ones you have in Thailand can't be beat!!
>122 PaulCranswick: Well.....for me it is snoring (absence of), space (abundance of), and interruptions (lack of). I like to read uninterrupted, and the nature of a marital relationship means that stuff comes up. Did you remember to do this? Oh- did you hear that...and it is me or him that state this stuff. It is just a relief to not to have to talk to *anyone* about *anything* when you have the whole bed to yourself for the while night. A novelty, if you will :)
It is an idyllic place, Paul, but when heaving with people, not so much.
Hi Megan, hope you had a good trip my dear, it does look lovely. Sending love and hugs dear friend.
>122 PaulCranswick: Exactly what Megan said, snoring (absence of), space (abundance of), and interruptions (lack of) and also not so hot. I don't like being hot while I sleep and humans are very effective space heaters.
>124 johnsimpson: Thanks JS, all good here. And already nearing hump day! Which is W's birthday, as it happens. the big 09!!
>125 nittnut: hear hear (can I second my own comment!?)
The hot thing is too true, must be a boy thing. I swear I can feel the heat radiating off him from a distance! Speaking of feeling the heat....
The other morning me and the lovely other were having a cuddle before getting up and Lenny raced in, saw us cuddling, yelled out SEX at the top of his lungs, and ran out again (btw, it wasn't). Anyway, after on (as if that wasn't funny enough!!) the lovely other overheard Lenny stating conclusively to his older brother: "I'm pretty sure daddy's too heavy to be on top of mummy."
Tee hee. Fun times ahead with the birds and the bees discussions?
Personally I'd save that one for a great 21st party anecdote....
Hope your last few interviews come through quickly.
>126 LovingLit: Oh that is funny! Kids can be so entertaining!
>123 LovingLit: I understand your need for quiet, peaceful reading. I actually enjoy when Nathen is working nightshift. Despite the extra work for me with getting both girls fed, bathed and in bed once they are in bed I get a few hours of complete quiet to read and do what I wish. I love hanging out with Nate when he is home but I always feel guilty leaving him on his own to watch TV when I go off to read.
>127 Berly: too funny ay! Len is a real clown most of the time, but that comment was his thoughtful side!!
>128 charl08: Both my boys are sooo silly, they can't keep a straight face for a second and things always descend to toilet talk with them, I hate to think how the birds and bees conversation is going to go!
>129 ChelleBearss: I always feel guilty leaving him on his own to watch TV when I go off to read.
Aaaah guilt. Mothers excel at that, I have found.
I agree with Jenn above. It is a tough one. You could sit for a bit and then go off and get your hour of quiet time.
I asked my lovely other for 2 hours of uninterrupted reading time for my birthday a few years ago- I got it too, and it was the BEST present :)
>130 nittnut: Old Lenny huh? He's a crack up.
Sometimes I feel like me and the lovely other are tag team lounge-users! He will listen to music (I can't read there then, as I need silence to read), and if Im watching a film or tv in the lounge, he goes off and reads or listens to music in our room, as he doesn't generally like to watch a full length film. Sheesh!
Hi, Megan. Hope your week is off to a good start. I am looking forward to your continuing thoughts on The Buried Giant. That one really grew on me.
>132 msf59: Mark, I am persevering with The Buried Giant. It is tough at times to see if he is talking about the present or a past story. So I am having to concentrate. But putting in long(ish) sessions seems to pay off, so I can let the story wash over me. I'm not sure I know what is going on completely, but I do like Axl and Beatrice, and want to know what their journey will hold!
Hi, Megan! I am giggling uncontrollably at Lenny's antics — I do believe you have your hands full with those boys, but such fun they must be.
Hope you can wrap up your interviews soon, and then on to the next phase. Has it started to feel as if you will never really be done?
>131 LovingLit: I do try and read while Nate watches TV sometimes, but it depends on what he is watching. Sometimes I can't concentrate, I'll find myself watching the tv over top of my book.
Usually if I need some book time I'll escape and take a bath with my book. It's quiet and relaxing and I feel less guilty reading my books there instead of in bed.
And yes, mother's guilt. We are quite good at it
>133 LovingLit: Yeah, I think you kind of read that book like a magic picture- slightly out of focus and the picture in the background appears. (I thought. Possibly!)
>134 rosalita: hands full. Yes :)
Interviews never ending? Maybe, but at least I am using the time to transcribe, and am more and more pleased with myself for conducting shorter and shorter interviews. Mwa ha ha.
>135 ChelleBearss: the bath is my go to retreat from life. It is so good to soak away in the bath and read. Only once have I dipped my pages into the water for becoming too rested ;)
>136 charl08: that is a great analogy! (metaphor?) I like to think of it like that, it makes me forgive myself for not 'getting' every aspect.
I love all this talk of alone time and sleeping arrangements.
I finally gave up on sleeping with husband about 6 years ago after 20 years of being disturbed by his coming to bed and then his snoring. It just became too much, so I sleep upstairs in the bedroom where I can't hear the TV when he has it on. He doesn't particularly like it, but if he were to be completely honest, I think he likes the fewer-interruption nights, too because I get up and down several times and even if it didn't wake him up, it used to change his snoring pattern so I knew he was disturbed at some level. We usually spend time in the evening getting caught up on our days and watching whatever - right now we're on season 6 of Midsomer Murders - then he goes off to do computer stuff til he goes to bed and I go upstairs to read and play on my cell phone til I go to sleep. I know he's jealous of my being retired, but that's the advantage of marrying a younger man - I got to retire first!
Happy 09 to W!
>138 karenmarie: We're enjoying Midsomer Murders, too, Karen. I think we're on season 4. Our daughter tipped us off to how good they are. Apparently there are 19 seasons - although they're the short (to a USA-ian) British ones.
Your book club sounds "interesting", Megan. My group started up after an 8-month hiatus. I sure missed the interaction. We read The Buried Giant last year. The comments helped me understand and appreciate the book more. On a strange note, I've recently tried to join The Silent Book Club on FB. I haven't heard a word from them!?!
Belated condolences on your sweet cat, Terry. Does Lenny still ask about him? He is one of the sensitive ones...some children take a pet's death in stride while others mourn deeply. I can still come to tears when I remember my childhood (and later) pets...
>138 karenmarie: lol- love your rationale for marrying a younger man. I too married a younger man- although we aren't in fact married- he is 40 days younger than me :)
My cousin moved rooms to escape her husband's snoring, and she loved it. She reckons it was mostly about getting to have girly things in her room again!
>139 jnwelch: I haven't heard of Midsomer Murders, and haven't even watched 2 hours of TV in the last 2 weeks, I don't think! Nor have I been reading much either though. Which makes me wonder what the heck I have been doing!
>140 Donna828: Lenny does still mention Terry- on our way home from school we would often see Terry snoozing in the sun just over our fence in the neighbours garden, Lenny will sometimes see the spot and tell me that that's where Terry used to sleep. We both say that we miss him, and then carry on with our afternoon.
I do find my book club interesting, Donna, but as you've probably deduced, not for the reasons that people usually do!
Shorter interviews with the same content sound like a great move.
Terry's spot comments made me feel quite maudlin. We didn't have pets until my brother got a gerbil, and I'm afraid I was a bit heartless. It was such an escape artist it was kind of a relief when she finally passed on!
>142 rosalita: season 20! Cripes, it must be good if they made that many series.
>143 LovingLit: Oops, tried to post a link to a rad Dandy Warhols song, instead I will give you this pic of them, and then you can see for yourselves how (utterly) cool they are. I saw them live this week and it was the best gig Ive been to since Courtney Barnett.
>144 charl08: Yes- I am flying through transcribing now. Those first ones were a trial!!
>141 LovingLit: I too married a younger man- although we aren't in fact married- he is 40 days younger than me :)
That made me smile. xx
Have a lovely weekend. Prod your sister too as she has disappeared again!
>137 LovingLit: I, too, have sent the odd book for an accidental bath. The books forgive me in the end, I'm sure!
I tried a bath bomb for the first time last nigh. It was weird but the scent was lovely. It was a charmed aroma bomb so in the end I found some jewellery in it. Pretty neat experience I think
Hi Megan! Sharing a bed with someone just sounds inconvenient. Hmmm, the same is true for bathrooms...and televisions! Heck, I don't get you married people at all! :P
>149 Berly: Well, my weekend was certainly action- packed!!
Weekend rundown: W's birthday party (laser strike and friends over here for a run around), afternoon, evening and night at my sisters to help her with her kids (she still can't walk, and her husband was away).
Election night!!! Much as with Germany, we now await the coalitions to form, so even though the right-leaning government got the most votes, they cannot form a govt without the help of a minor party, which means that the left-leaning lot (who I voted for) might still get it!!!! *fingers crossed*
Little Lenny is inflicted with the sickness- Saturday night we got barely a skerrick of sleep (4 hours tops for me anyway!). Fever, headache, vomit....poor wee lad. Lucky he has some reserves, as he hasn't eaten much in a few days (I am keeping his fluids up though, I know how important that is!).
2.5 hour walk for me Sunday afternoon- the after-effects of which I still feel now. Me and a friend had a walk scheduled in for nearly a month! An the weather played ball for us, which was great. We walked along the spine of the Port Hills,
>150 ChelleBearss: bath bomb sounds the bomb!! :)
I haven't had a bath is ages! I think I was out off by my last bath experience where the hot water ran out while it was filling, and I got into a luke warm bath and felt like I had to stay to 'make the most' of the water that was there. Dumb idea!! It wasn't pleasant.
>151 Ape: Lucky for me I didn't! (get married that is). But I do all the married stuff like share a bed, so, yeah. More fool me.
Lovely to see you round these parts, Stephen! How are things??
>152 LovingLit: UGH. Poor Lenny and Poor You. We had the vomits here this week as well. Although we have had a 4-year hiatus so I don't feel I can complain too much. Mr. E started at 4 am, mostly asleep, poor kid. And his lovely, wonderful, keeper of a father got up and cleaned it all up, so I really can't complain at all, TBH. I hope he feels better very soon.
I am awaiting the results of the election with interest. I have friends all over the political map, so have been seeing posts on FB in favor of national, labour, Maori, etc.
>153 nittnut: Good old Winston Peters (NZ First) will hold up proceedings as much as he can just to show people that he can....but I am convinced that whatever the final govt looks like it will be better than straight National. NZ First likes to pull the right towards the centre, and if he was with Labour/Greens, they would have the majority, but he might do the same.
I was amazed that I could walk at all yesterday afternoon Smith my lack of sleep...but it was lovely up on the hills.
The Buried Giant by Kazoo Ishiguro 361p
I am not one for mysticism or the fantastical, so it was always going to be a hard sell for me. What I did get from this book though was an admiration for the meandering relationship between the two main characters, Axl and Beatrice. They are elderly, and have decided they need to take a trip to a town nearby to visit their estranged son. But, the mist that has been hanging over their village muddies their memories, and only fragments of the past become clear, and even then these come and go. Axl and Beatrice are trying to piece together their shared past, and they just know they need to get to their son. So begins a Tolkein-esque quest. And there are even pixies and dragons to keep the other-world types happy. Me? I take what I take from it, which is lovely, and move on.
Glad you were able to take some enjoyment out of The Buried Giant. I think there is more depth here than one thinks. It just gets lost a bit in the mist.
Good luck with your work week.
Sorry to see your poor wee one is sick! Hope he is starting to feel better!
I think you got more from The Buried Giant than I did. Axl made me angry with the way he spoke (princess!).
>156 msf59: lost in the mist- get it? :) :) :)
But yes, it is a deep read, and I like the Briton/Saxon conflict story as well.
>157 ChelleBearss: I though Axl was just a lovely old man who wanted to care for his (princess) wife. She seemed to be receptive to it, but I wouldn't be called Princess, thanks very much!
Lenny is still off school today, and I tried to work from home a bit, but didn't get too far. He will be back at school tomorrow!
Hey - I noticed your comment on Bill's thread about your reluctant reader. I have had amazing success with audio books for my one. He just hated reading. It was too much work. He got bored 3 chapters in and left it. He was reading at grade level, but no growth. I started him on audio books, I think the first one was How to Train Your Dragon. He loves them. He is year 6 this year and reading comprehension and everything is way above grade level. It took ages to convince my husband that listening to audio books was just as good as reading, but I think he's convinced now. The Percy Jackson's were on audio, and while I find the narrator super annoying, my kids liked them. The thing is, they can understand more vocabulary than they can read early on, so listening improves their comprehension and their vocabulary, and eventually the eyeballs catch up.
Just a thought. :)
>160 nittnut: great. I never thought of that actually, he rarely sits still (and if he ever does, his brother jumps on him). But, he would listen in bed I reckon.
I am technologically inept though, so how do you suggest I proceed. I mean, I literally used a cassette tape to record my uni interviews on last year! That is the level you are dealing with :)
I finally started A woman looking at men looking at women: essays on art, sex, and the mind after you recommended it ages ago - I was blown away by her essay looking at interdisciplinarity. So useful! I feel like photocopying it and sticking it up on the wall somewhere for future reference. I suspect I won't read the whole book, but even just dipping into it so far has been eye-opening, not quite what I was expecting having read some of her fiction and found it quite opaque.
>161 LovingLit: Are there graphic novels for kids other than the traditional superhero comic books? Perhaps those could help keep his interest?
>163 ChelleBearss: There are lots, Chelle/Megan. Raina Telgemeier is popular with Smile and others; we particularly liked her Ghosts. Anya's Ghost, Brian Selznick's Invention of Hugo Cabret and Wonderstruck, El Deafo, the graphics for Coraline and The Graveyard Book, are some of the really good ones out there.
>162 charl08: great! Now that you mention it, I was struck by that essay too. I wanted to scan it and send it to a friend who was studying something similar but ended up not. Was it about art and science and how they are really more alike than we think??
Also, good idea to skip sections, the entire middle section would be one to skip!!! (imo)
>163 ChelleBearss: good idea. I have looked at a few of those. I accidentally brought one home for him from the library that had been mis-shelved in kids GNs, and it had sex scenes all through it! Oops. I ought to try again.
>164 jnwelch: good list! I will save that to refer back to.
Eta: I thought GNs would be a shoe-in for W, but he didn't take to the ones he's tried. He is really liking the Bear Grylls adventure book he is reading at the moment.
>164 jnwelch: I will also save that list and look for some of them as i am a complete dullard when it comes to what to read in GN.
>166 PaulCranswick: I foresee a Cranswickiakn GN haul!!! Show us how it's done, Paul.
Oh, I loved El Deafo too. Great recommendation.
>165 LovingLit: There will definitely be skipping. What a chunkster...
The Iron Woman by Ted Hughes YA 136p (tally 6,667p)
A sweet, yet dark fable about the peril our earth faces if we continue to live in a culture of greed and economic growth at any cost. Young Lucy encounters a gigantic iron woman newly emerged from the boggy river bed who is in turmoil, and feels obligated to figure out how to assist her. She remembers the news of the Iron Man some years before and contacts the boy who dealt with that issue (this is a follow up to that very book). Together they discover the reason for her mission.
It is a very obvious indictment on pollution and promoter of environmental values, but I think a kid with a good imagination could buy it.
>170 Oberon: >171 jnwelch: *saved* and *saved*
>172 ChelleBearss: >173 Berly: >174 jnwelch: what the? How did you know? ;)
I was road tripping for my birthday, and ended up at my dad's on the West Coast for a slap up meal with venison steaks crumbed and fried, coleslaw and potatoes. YUM. We are just back from there today, and its essay marking for me again- and work tomorrow and the next day (other job)...yikes! Oh, and did I mention it's also school holidays? Double yikes!
If you don't hear from me in a week, come save me!
Good luck with it Megan. Hope you manage to pack some sleep in there too!
Happy birthday. That meal sounds a wonderful way to celebrate.
>176 charl08: thanks Charlotte.
I managed 10 hours work today, and a quick coffee with a friend before getting a lift home to see the kids and hear about their day. Glad I did some hours today, as tomorrows (paid) hours got cancelled (hmph). Never mind though, as I will mark some essays instead.
>178 LovingLit: Belated happy Birthday, Megan!
Nice books you got. The Annie Proulx books looks interesting and is available in Dutch translation, so I added it to mout TBR.
Happy birthday book haul, Megan! Wuthering Heights was both one of the first classics I ever read and one of the first audiobooks I ever listened to. I remember being completely captivated — I think the dog got some extra-long walks during that time as that was when I listened to it. On cassette tapes, just so you know how long ago that was!
>180 rosalita: Julia: You misspelled Withering Blights. Blech.
Hi, Megan! Looks like you got a great Birthday Book Haul (except for that one stinker)!
>179 FAMeulstee: My dad was raving about the Proulx book, and he couldn't remember the title or author. So he googled, and I LT tag checked some books based on the content, and I got to the title and author the first. #LTwin ;)
>180 rosalita: casettes! I love casettes, at the age of 42 I am old enough to have used them, and young enough to note that they are a retro hipster item. It must have been you recently talking about WH that got me half keen- I hadn't been before that. (see story below I am about to address to the Grinch that stole Withering Heights!! ;))
>181 scaifea: lol!! I'm getting a feeling that *someone* has beef with Bronte??
I never wanted to read the thing at all....my lovely other got all excited about his love and dedication to me and felt the need to do a mini group read (just the two of us). He was so enthusiastic about it (this might have had something to do with the beers he had consumed) that he stated- let's read Wuthering Heights! This was based *solely* on this being the only classic he knows the title of, which was based *solely* on the Kate Bush song!
SO now I find myself with a copy of it of my very own.
(now what would be funny, would be if I got him a copy for his birthday, which is conveniently timed for less than 40 days away!!)
Christchurch Ruptures by Kate Pickles
This little book is one of an ongoing series, often written by academics, which address social and political issues. I read it in a few days, as is both small in size and short in pages.
The Christchurch earthquakes of 2010/2011 changed the city in very obvious physical ways, through the decimation of the buildings in the CBD, changes to zoning of land, and even the physical appearance of the hills surrounding the city. This book looks at the social, psychosocial and psychogeographical changes that occurred in the city because of the quakes. There are chapters on various aspects of life in Christchurch, the most interesting for me was cultural shift that has taken place now that new buildings are needed in the city.
The tension between those who want to rebuild the heritage buildings as they were, and those who want to build a new and innovative architecture is described in terms of the cultural conservatism that Christchurch was, and apparently still is, known for. Since the book was published, there has been a resolution of sorts in regards to the ruins of the central cathedral- it will now be repaired rather than demolished. I wonder what the author would have to say about this, considering she seemed to be in the 'new and innovative' camp.
Happy Weekend, Megan. I have a copy of Barkskins on shelf. I hope to finally get to it, in the near future. I am a big fan of Proulx.
>186 LovingLit: I found it a wonderful city, full of brave people giving one finger to the tribulations of nature.
Our own LT correspondent there isn't half bad either!
Have a lovely weekend. Megan.
>188 ronincats: 42! Yikes. Ah well, I still feel 29 :)
>189 msf59: It is a biggie! But we can hack it, right? My dad raved about it, and so did his partner. It seems to be a social history of trees, of sorts. I have read a both a social history of trash, and of Christchurch chimneys, so I guess trees is the only logical next step!
>190 PaulCranswick: This is your Chch LT Correspondent, reporting in. News so far on the home front: marking essays for 4 hours today (and 5 hours yesterday), 90 minutes respite from essays and fighting kids in the form of sitting at the indoor pool while W swam and played (and I did some uni reading from the book Risk and Blame: Essays in Cultural Theory), anxiously awaiting pay day as bills have again snuck up on us and we have lots of kids school holidays stuff to pay for, and, my dad is coming to stay (which is good news as we were only just staying with him, so he mustn't be sick of us if he's coming back for more).
>1 LovingLit: Hiya Meganzee! Hope you're well. I've made a thread. I just couldn't break eleven (11) years of tradition and not make at least one thread.
>193 LovingLit: Ditto - I thought Richard had been lost to wild ......
>194 roundballnz: Which is why I prepared this little sign for good ole RD...only I couldn't find his thread, so will just say it here :)
>195 LovingLit: That would be one trickster labelled "My Thread for 2017" ......
>191 LovingLit: Have they read any other Proulx? Inquiring bookish minds...
>196 roundballnz: I saw that one and thought, surely RD would name and claim his space, so didn't look. More fool me :)
>197 msf59: I have read The Shipping News, Brokeback Mountain, and I have read a collection of short stories, that I thought were chapters of a novel, and I spent the whole time reading it thinking gosh, when are all these characters going to come together! But I can't remember the title :)
Hi Megan! I totally missed your birthday but I hope it was happy.
>101 LovingLit: Secondhand Time sounds fascinating. Because of the three months I spent in Soviet-controlled Poland in 1981, I am quite interested in those first-person accounts you describe.
I liked The Buried Giant much more than you did (and I seem to be in the minority on that around here).
>199 EBT1002: I liked the Buried Giant too, but I cannot get my head around giants, dragons, pixies and other such creatures :) The relationship story was lovely, and the journey too.
I reckon Secondhand Time is a goer for you!
My birthday was great, and now I prepare for my lovely other's special day, which sometimes gets missed as a day to make a big deal of on account of life. So I have some making up to do.
>201 richardderus: lost to redemption huh. The mark of a life well led.
You will find your thread un-named, adrift amongst on the tide. And if you dan't find it- I am in trouble!
>202 LovingLit: *snerk* I aimed at a well-misspent youth. Achievement unlocked, as the kids say.
I found the darn thing, praise be, and starred it. I'm rusty in the LT skills department. It's been what, three years? since this was my main stomping grounds. I'm recovering the flow as I go on.
Oh BTW do you remember a Kiwi actor named Kevin Smith? He played someone big on Glow, but Murrikinz remember him as Ares in the Xena series. (Which did NOT age well.) Died in China about 15 years ago. Somehow I was reminded that he sang beautifully. Then found out he was in a band called Say Yes to Apes! Does that ring any bells?
>203 richardderus: you found your thread! Hooray!!! :) (that is step one taken care of)
I have never heard of Say Yes to Apes, but that is a great band name. And I do recall him, I had no idea he was dead!!! He was an actor on a lame tv drama here called Shortland Street.
Little Lenny, so quick to lose interest!!! Going, going- GONE! (White baiting on the West Coast last week.) This was just after he took the dare of a random whitebaiter to eat one straight form the net. He declared it tasted a bit sandy, and was a little crunchy.
>205 LovingLit: Yes, it's a great band name. Unsurprisingly, since the albums are 35 years old, I can't find them. They likely be on cassette anyway, which I have no way to play.
He died on the set of a movie he'd just wrapped his role in. He was off to Hollywood the same month to film his role in a Bruce Willis vehicle, first big role in a US film, when he fell off a scaffold. Tragic, really.
>206 LovingLit: *baaawww*
>207 richardderus: Wow- he must have been one of those ex-Shortland Street actors that I just assumed faded into some other career. That is a sad story, and a real rip off for his family and friends (as most deaths are).
>208 EBT1002: Never one to shy away from a dare, is our Lenny! I see in his future a career of impressing young women by crushing beer cans on his head *sigh*
>209 ChelleBearss: That it is! The whitebait are much, much smaller though :) And that session we caught about 12 of them (bear in mind you need about 100 to make one pattie).
Aw. Cute picture!
>195 LovingLit: I'm a bit bitter about whales as I appear to have missed their visit to these parts by One Day! How unfair is that? Penguins still on the horizon though.
Just a quick hello, Megan! Happy (very) Belated Birthday!
>206 LovingLit: I like the pics. And I learned something new. White baiting.
>210 LovingLit: am old enough to remember Kevin Smith ....... *** quietly shuffles into the corner****
>214 roundballnz: same! Ha. And yet, I feel so young. *confuddling*
Lightening and thunder storm at 5:45am. I wondered what on earth the neighbours were putting their wheelie bins out for when it isn't even rubbish day. #suchanurbanite
>214 roundballnz:, >215 LovingLit: *shuffles out from Old Mens' Corner* Girlie...you *are* young! I'm 3 years older than Kevin Smith!
Latest Shortland Street alum to make it in the US is Frankie Adams. She's the hot young babe on The Expanse, based on the space opera series by "James S.A. Corey", which I couldn't get into. I'm a big fan of the TV show, though, and Adams is great as the Martian Marine who knows more than she ought to.
>213 LovingLit: Wow! Thanks for the pic. I had no idea. Translucent little things, aren't they?
I hope your week is going well.
>217 EBT1002: in that case, I won't tell you the the flash of lightening was for *one second* the flash of a camera, in my mind. #suchanurbanite still applies!!
>218 richardderus: Shortland Street and me fell out a decade or so ago, possibly a decade point five ago....so I have no idea who is was or has done anything (anymore).
Also, *yuss*, 42 is the new 53, etc. So I am young.
>219 karenmarie: It is fascinating to be able to actually see their spine. Bizarre little things, aren't they? We joked to little Lenny that he had an eyeball stuck in his teeth after he completed his riverside stunt (of eating one straight from the net), and he was trying frantically to brush it off!
>220 Berly: I am not sure when I will get to Barkskins, it is so imposing. And I have Engaged Scholarship and Rugby's Great Split still to finish for uni work, and The Master and Margarita, This is the Story of a Happy Marriage and No is Not Enough (and possible Wuthering Heights as well, if the lovely other presses his point) to read as well! Yikes!
Before then though, I should finish my interview transcribing for my research, which has taken a back seat to essay marking this last week.
>222 richardderus: me neither. I don't find it particularly easy to read a large book in bed (which is where I almost always read), so the big ones are intimidating for more than one reason.
Great bargains to be had at the local church fair this morning. $1 books, mostly Danielle Steele and the like... but these two were a find.
- A Three Dog Life by Abigail Thomas $1
- My New Zealand Story: Lighthouse Family by Philippa Werry $1
And, this uber awesome go-cart (lightening strike our own addition):
Ooh lovely bargain books. I couldn't resist a bargain sale myself last night at the local late night market! A place where you can get cake and a book seemed like a great strategy to me.
>225 charl08: well, I managed to read over half of Three Dog Life this morning during my sleep in. I was awake in the night with a sore throat so begged a sleep in this morning, and when I woke up (after my mini sleep in) I read until the kids forced me out of bed.
It is fab!
>226 Berly: yes, apart from the wheels needing replacing, and them costing a not inconsiderable amount of money, and considerable time and effort on my lovely (lovely) other's part.
Go him, he is doing it all with insistent voices in his ear that they badly need to ride it soon so can he hurry up!
>227 roundballnz: I foresee races at the local quarry park in my near future!
>231 LovingLit: Waiting until the end sounds very restrained. Feel free to commence warbling...
Lucky for you they had two gocarts at the sale. Your boys must be ecstatic. Great picture!
Hi Megan! Trying to catch up here - I'm so sorry you lost your sweet kitty. That's so hard. Callia told me she is thinking of applying for a study abroad program at the University of Canterbury. She is super excited about the programming. Al I could think about was you!
Hope you're having a good week.
I handed in the essays I marked over the school holidays (win!!). Phew, now I am free from essay marking for ever more!!
I think........the class teacher refused to take the marking guide back off me and said "never say never"- I think she's grooming me for a PhD and would like me to mark her course for the 4th year running. I think I've had enough. So. We will see :)
>232 charl08: no time to warble now! Saving up warbling for another time. But- yes, its good. Read it if you can :)
>233 Ameise1: Thanks B!
>234 Donna828: Well, the read go cart was ours already, my dad made it for the boys. And the green one matches perfectly!
>235 richardderus: Rabid ravings on A Three Dog Life to follow! I am preparing* for an outing to see Ms Alison Moyet this evening with the lovely other.
* this basically translates to having a wine while listening to some tracks :)
>236 msf59: Barkskins and a mini GR?! Enticing!! You say the word when ready, as I can always book horn one in (it's taking me that long to read The Master and Margarita that I am all over the show with my reading really).
>237 AMQS: Poor old Terry....and as coincidences would have it, today my brother's beloved cat was put down by a vet brought in for an urgent home visit in the early hours of this morning. He was old, and very unwell, poor old thing.
Re: Callia considering a year in Christchurch- at my old university....that is nothing short of awesome! I hope you (all) will factor in home cooked meals and help at hand from me if she decides to come!
Well, I have had a great week.
It started on Monday (as a lot of weeks do!!) with a productive work meeting, and then another productive work meting (other job). That evening of course, I say ALISON MOYET live in concert. And it just so happens that I lover her music, particularly the early electronic stuff from Yazoo (which she formed wth Vince Clark who later went on to form Depeche Mode). And it also just so happens that her new album marks a return to electronic soundtrack, and this is what the bulk of the music at the concert was (win!!).
Here is a link to her blog, in which she writes up a summary of all her gigs. I was glad to hear that she enjoyed Christchurch, and also to hear her explanation of a small tiff she and one of her band members had before coming on stage!
And that's about the extent of my good week really, the rest is just work (going well) and study (progressing). But Alison Moyet was a fantastic gig, and I am still in awe of the amazing gigs I have seen this and last year. Not a disappointment among them.
A Three Dog Life by Abigail Thomas
Spoilers aren't really spoilers as are revealed very early on in the book, but still.
The author's husband went out to
I gave the book immediately to my mum, and asked her to give it to my sister straight after :)
>241 LovingLit: You're getting too close for comfort with the book bullets, dear. Nope. No. Nuh-uh. Nyet. Nix and nein!
*trudges grumpily off to Ammy*
I'm not familiar with Alison Moyer, but I love that the concert was a good one for you, Megan. And the dog book sounds really interesting.
>242 richardderus: Pew pew (that was the sound of the bullets flying.
Also flying (high) is me. Cos NZ just got a (centre) LEFT government. After 11 days of deliberation since all the votes came in, the coalition government was revealed today. and All parties that me and the lovely other voted for are in government. Labour, NZ Fist, and the Greens are together governing the country for the next three years.
We have been under a right-leaning give for 9 years so this is awesome :) :) :)
>243 rosalita: She sang a few pop songs in the 80s that were big, but her hey day (IMO) is now, and the early 80s electronic funky stuff. I feel so lucky to have caught this period in her career to get exactly what I love about her in one show.
>247 FAMeulstee: Yay! For a pacifist, I sure like the sound of those direct hits :)
Hi, Megan. Sorry, The Master and Margarita has been a slow read. That one moved along pretty well for me, despite a couple of slow spots. Hopefully, you can just knock it out.
*grumble* The Princess Leia of the bookstacks spews book bullets, votes in a proper governing coalition, and smugly absorbs Alison Moyet live. I sit inside on a gorgeous fall day, streaming with cold, in a country that elected...a vile THING that dismantles the social infrastructure willy-nilly to get personal revenge on the best Republican president since Eisenhower.
Why is it I like you again?
Hi Megan! Congrats on the great reads, the great concerts, and the new government. There is hope in the world, despite drumpf here and the new right-wing gov't in Austria, among others.
Hi Megan, hope you and the family had a really good weekend my dear and that you have a good week ahead. Sending love and hugs to you all from both of us dear friend.
>249 msf59: Well to be fair to the book, Mark, I do enjoy reading it when I go to the trouble of actually picking it up! Like this morning, for example, when I was in the bath, a banged a chapter out just like that. I feel the need to explain here that I wouldn't normally bathe in the morning, but the holiday house we were at had a crappy shower, so a bath was called for.
>250 richardderus: Oh yes, I see the thread police are here!! :):) Bang on at 250 posts, as usual ;) ;)
And, yes. I did participate in the election of a functioning democratic government. In fact, all the views in my household are represented, which is great, the system we go by is a proportional representation system so we are all happy as larry.
>251 karenmarie: I had forgotten (momentarily) about how AWESOME Alison Moyet was, her voice its incredible, and she is super cool.
>252 johnsimpson: A long weekend here, JS. About day is today (Monday) and we were away the last three nights in Cheviot, a rural town about 2 hours drive north of here. Not your usual holiday destination, but its how we roll.
How did the boys want to vote Megan, or did I miss this?
Nice to know one country not leaning ever further right... Might have to look up emigration options.
>254 charl08: the boys wanted to vote for whoever me and the lovely other voted for, because they are young and impressionable and we are easily able to convince them. Also trying to get them to ask questions and think for themselves though, so its a balancing act!
*still jealous of Jacinda being PM since we still suffer under the Orange Shitgibbon*
>256 richardderus: Yes. You do suffer under that person, whose demeanour is causing US reputation to plummet worldwide. Lucky for me I know there are plenty of amaze-balls murrikans out there, and that they're almost all right here at my disposal!
>257 LovingLit: Heh. The book-readers are pretty much the cream of the crop...all 2 million of us, out of 350 million.
Point of interest. NZ's population (4.7MM) slots neatly between Alabama (4.8MM) and Louisiana (4.5MM). Long Island has 3.2MM people, and NYC 8MM people.
As to IT, I simply refuse to think about IT, it's injurious to my mental health.
>258 richardderus: That is a point of interest! We have a very small population, which brings me to a *fun fact*.
NZ was used as a test population for various British initiatives, including the EFT POS card (electronic funds transfer at point of sale). We were some of the first people to have and use individual debit cards (i.e. not credit cards) to pay at the counter and have the money come directly from your account. Pretty cool huh?
>259 LovingLit: It is! I can see why that would work, given the relative compactness, relative cultural homogeneity, and the completeness of NZ's isolation from other countries. Oz is over 1000 miles away and nobody much lives in Antarctica.
>260 richardderus: Yeah, I guess we are a useful sample size. I'm not sure who banned smoking in workplaces first (i.e. in pubs and restaurants etc), but that worked well too. Now cafes/bars etc have a non-enclosed smoking area and everyone else gets to not die from secondary lung cancer- WIN!
That particular law was predicted to be the end of the hospitality industry, btw, but to me is just another example of how regulation is one of the most effective ways to make positive change.
>239 LovingLit: I am a fan of Alison Moyet and I agree about the early stuff. "Only You" is a favorite, along with "Don't Go."
I get to see Tori Amos in concert in late November. :-)
>259 LovingLit: I agree with Richard that you have shared a fabulous fun fact! EFT POS cards are so ubiquitous now....
>241 LovingLit: I am also victim of the bullets. I was thinking Richard would shield me but NO, he just heads off to ammy and leaves me to fend for myself. Hmph.
What would I do without my EFT POS card - or, as we call them here, debit cards? The little suckers now are 'chipped', which frequently means its taking longer at checkout to process and you can't swipe it if it's a chip card. Gotta stick it in chip facing in, face up, too. So many conditions, but still - so much easier to NOT see how your money's being spent, and being able to pay a bill last minute online.
God bless NZ!
>262 EBT1002: I listende to the singles CD the other day again, and cranked it up. It was amazing! I thoroughly enjoyed her voice, and her personality too.
>263 richardderus: Liquor and puke, sheesh, those were bad old days!!
>264 karenmarie: The old EFT POS card, huh? I use pay wave when in a hurry now, do you guys have that? Only good for purchases under $70 (I think).
ETA: Also, persevering with The Master and Margarita! I can do this!!
Is pay wave what we call contactless (you don't have to put your card or pin into the machine). I like your name better!
Went walking, this was the view!
Cool huh? To get her we went from my friends family farm, up a valley and then joined up with the national trail network, the Te Araroa trail. It was a 3.5 hour return trip, and those dark green hedges down the valley is about where we started. *phew*
>266 charl08: pay wave will be contactless, yes! I think some call it that here too.
>267 msf59: This weekend away walking (we stayed in the farm workers hut which is unoccupied in the lead up to summer), I read 6 academic articles, and 4 chapters of The Master and Margarita. Talk about a fantastic weekend!
Have I really not been by here since the end of September? Good grief. I blame FB. I see your posts there and think we are caught up...
Love the photo. Good work getting up there.
I am not sure how to advise you on providing audio books for L and W. We were required to purchase Chrome books for school, so we often log the kids on to the Audible account from there. Or, the library has something called a Playaway, which is a mini audio player, you just need earphones. Back in the day, we had CD players, which are amazingly hard to find anymore.
>268 LovingLit: Ooooooooo that viewwwwwwwwww
You ain't so hard on the eyes neither. :P
>268 LovingLit: Nice! - whereabouts is that for geographically curious ?
>273 richardderus: It was a fantastic view, and a slog of a walk! As for my windswept countenance, I couldn't possibly comment!
>274 EBT1002: Aw shucks. I am very home proud- and that vista is to me a quintessentially kiwi scene.
>275 roundballnz: Map 102 of the Te Araroa trails series online. Here's a snippet! Up the Rakaia Valley.
Pay wave, contactless - we have that here. I don't know if it's only for Apple products or not - I've never seen it offered in my teensy town of Pittsboro NC USA (not that I've been to every business here!). I like 'pay wave' - seems so friendly.
>268 LovingLit: Awesome view!! I went on a walk yesterday, too, but I don't think my view was as good and I had far less vertical climb. LOL
Thanks for being such a good test market!
>268 LovingLit: That's a gorgeous view! I'm glad it turned out to be worth the hike to get there. It looks like you have lovely weather for it, too.
Back in the 1990s, Mobil gasoline stations here on Long Island, and possibly/probably everywhere else?, had pay wave for their fuel and convenience store items if one used their credit card. I had forgotten about that until now.
>277 karenmarie: our pay wave isn't just for Apple, it's a credit card feature that you can elect to have. IT's good for purchases under $70 only, I think (to prevent someone stealing your card and going to town, as it were).
>278 Berly: The view was great, and my muscles recovered pretty well considering what it took to get to that view! An early morning yoga session helped, I'm sure.
>279 rosalita: The weather was incredible, we were lucky as it is so patchy this time of year. We didn't even check the forecast though, as no matter the weather we were getting our night off!!
>280 richardderus: Huh- interesting. Did they make special cards themselves for it? Our pay wave cards were advertised using the All Blacks captain at the time- of course they were! Those men advertise everything from beds to deodorant to bloody milk in schools. I bet they didn't think their roles would include so much advertising.
>281 LovingLit: Did they make special cards themselves for it? Yep, tiny tiny little key-fobs that you just waved at the pump or the pad inside the store.
I bet they didn't think their roles would include so much advertising. Then they weren't paying attention, though I suspect they like the role and the money it brings.
I'm re-reading a 1975 read instead of swallowing Potiki whole. The re-read is The Forever War and I would *never*ever* give it to my granddaughters. I'm perilously close to Pearl Ruling it.
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