Monday, February 25, 2008


9. The Amber Spyglass by Phillip Pullman
So this was my second read of this trilogy. Last time I really really disliked the final book, but this time it was my favorite. Very strange. I don't know what is going on with that.

10. The Guy Not Taken by Jennifer Weiner
A mysterious benefactor in my apartment building is responsible for me reading Jennifer Weiner. We have a spot where people leave books and things they no longer want, and i have gotten nearly every Jennifer Weiner book I have read from here. It is great! This one is a collection of short stories. They are all really good, and I was able to read them straight through which is something I can't often do with short stories.

11. The Man of My Dreams by Curtis Sittenfeld
Another kind of chick lit book, free from mysterious neighbors. I didn't really like this one. It follows one woman's issues with men from about high school until her late twenties. I liked the end, and it has a good message, but I didn't really like the writing style. It was kind of choppy and abrupt, but not in a good way.

12. Austenland by Shannon Hale
This is a really fun book about a woman obsessed with Pride and Prejudice who goes to a kind of theme park in England where she lives like an Austen character for 3 weeks. It was neat to imagine such a theme park, the main character was really engaging, and it was a fun read.

13. Madam Secretary by Madeleine Albright
I think I first realized my great love for Madeleine Albright when I read that she said Xena, Warrior Princess was her hero. This was my third try in getting through this autobiography, although that is not because it is a bad book, it is just very long and can get depressing with all the war and stuff. BUT it is very very good. It is well written and interesting and cool to read about Albright and her explanations for all kinds of world events. This book made me admire her even more.

14. Last Chance Saloon by Marian Keyes
Another freebie. This author is apparently somewhat credited with starting the whole "chick lit" genre. I did not really like this book though. I just may be tired of reading about women turning 30 and freaking out about get married. I thought most of the characters in this book were stereotypes and that it was very formulaic.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Saturday Night Fever

We got out of the house last night and went out like regular people with friends and social lives. woo! R and I went with our friend C to Thai in the West Village, and then to see the Oscar nominated live action shorts at the IFC Center (doesn't that mean the international film center center? But is is what their web site says). All the films were quite well done. I'd already picked who I thought would win for my yearly competition with Melinda, and seeing them did not really change my mind. I realized I've never seen an Oscar nominated or winning short film before, so I have no reference for knowing what kind of movies win.

Today I am trying to get some work done and also plan to go shopping for some new clothes. I somehow don't fit into anything I own, and have gotten down to one pair of pants and one skirt that I can teach in. I want to get something new before Tuesday to trick my students into thinking I have a wardrobe. After that, it is the Oscars! R and I were talking about buying tasty snacks to eat while watching. I'm not going to a party, though, because next week is Buckle Down and Write Like Crazy week and I am planning to get up early on monday and commence the buckling down.

OK, gotta get some work done so I can shop and Oscar without guilt.

Friday, February 22, 2008


This is the view outside our bedroom window. Snow! I love snow and we do not get enough of it here. I wish we had a better view out the bedroom window though.

Henrietta is in the living room window, looking like she wants to pounce on the fatty flakes that are falling outside. I think it is confusing her. She is a native Floridian after all, not used to these cold weather experiences.

I have been really tired lately -- I think it is left over from the plague still. But this morning I got up right when my alarm went off because there is to be no hot water after 10 am. Apparently the heat and hot water will be off for a few hours as the boiler is repaired. The whole thing make me nervous. I have visions of the heat and hot water not coming back on quickly... cross your fingers!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

La la la

I think I am getting better from the cold! There is still a little residual coughing, but hopefully it should go away soon. I'm still a little more tired than usual as well.

I have been in a pretty good mood lately, ever since I got a hair cut really. Seriously, often when I am down it turns out I just need a hair cut to cheer me up. My most recent hair cut is awesome, and was part of an excellent day that made me generally more cheerful. In the morning, I went downtown to the Aveda Institute, where I got to sit for an hour and a half while someone washed and cut my hair, and gave me a scalp massage and back rub. It was so nice to just sit, with no opportunity to do anything else. I also loooove when other people wash my hair. It is so relaxing. After that, I decided to stay down in the neighborhoods I never go to, so I walked around a bit, treated myself to a nice lunch, and then found a coffee shop to work in for a few hours.

The day ended with me working in the library of another university, and then going to a monkey talk. It made me realize that I am happier and more productive in the end if I take some time out like that to do things for myself.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Sickety sick

I have deprived you of my lovely blogging voice because I have been sick. I went and taught last Tuesday, feeling fine, had a great class, came home and within 5 minutes of entering the apartment felt TERRIBLE. Usually colds sneak up on you -- you know they are coming and you can try and stave them off with Airborne and rest. But not this one! It came out of nowhere. So since Tuesday night I have been prostrate with a horrible sore throat, excessive coughing, and a headache. I have not had a cold this bad in forever. I went to the doctor Friday and got some antibiotics, and am feeling better, but it is a slow progression.

In good news, I went to the Town of My Grad School last week and found that as long as I get a whole dissertation written, I should be able to defend in April or May. So that is good! Now I need to get well so I can work again.

Monday, February 11, 2008

time of day

The description is nice, but any day I am up that early is a bad bad day.

ps: Jennifer, I made it home alive!