Friday, May 27, 2011


Ulysses made me feel dumb. Maybe if I read it a few times I would have a clue as to what is going on, but it took me a long ass time to read. So, I might not ever read it a few times. Does anyone understand what this book is about?

Luckily there is wikipedia and so that helped somewhat, but often I found myself reading and re-reading a page multiple times just because I had no idea what it was even saying. Like this passage: "But tomorrow is a new day will be. Past was is today. What now is will then morrow as now was be past yester." Can you understand that in one read through?

And the book is filled with these kinds of paragraphs. It's really confusing. So, I'm not going to talk so much about what the book is about because I couldn't really explain it. And yes, I feel dumb.

However, I also feel accomplished because Ulysses was a challenge I really wanted to take on. And I definitely thought the writing was beautiful and poetic and it made me feel scholarly just for reading it. If I had mountains of time to do nothing but read and analyze, I would have taken it on this book. But, there are so many books that I want to read and I also have to work, clean, socialize, that I just couldn't take the time necessary to really get into Ulysses with a fine tooth comb.

Should you read it? Yes, if you love literature and want a challenging book. If you understand it, teach me.

5/5 stars, because I have to give James Joyce mad props and because he used a "lexicon" (that's wikipedia's words) of 30,030 words and that's something to give stars to.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Quote of the Day

"I apologized to her personally through facebook."
-An American youth explaining how she smoothed over a fight with a peer.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Summer Books

I'm thinking I can read five books this summer. I've sort of got a list going and finding it hard to pick what I should tackle in the warmer months. Here's what I'm thinking so far. Anyone else have suggestions.
In the Garden of Beasts. Truth be told I did not like The Devil in the White City, I reviewed it somewhere on the blog. But I didn't hate it either. I read it thinking it would be one thing and it was very different and I was disappointed by the difference. The story was pretty interesting, though. Although super detail oriented. With all that being said, I'm totally intrigued by this book.

Everything is Illuminated is on my all time favorite list. I have mad love for it. MAD LOVE. I've been wanting to tackle Foer's Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close for a long ass time, but never gotten around to it. However, now there's a movie being made and my need to read has skyrocketed. This is one of those where I could not watch the movie before reading the book.

Nobel Prize Winner. I actually know nothing about it (which is just how I like to go into reading books...if I know too much, I'm usually disappointed by what the book isn't instead of loving what it is). It's that cover that gets me. I can't ignore a cover like that.

I keep reading about how people have peed their pants reading this book. Today I read an excerpt from a prayer that Tina Fey wrote about raising a daughter. Here it is: "And when she one day turns on me and calls me a bitch in front of Hollister, Give me the strength, Lord, to yank her directly into a cab in front of her friends, For I will not have that shit. I will not have it." And this made me almost pee in my pants. I have to read this. I have to piss my pants at least once this summer.

Then there's this book. The Fear. I love this title. Awhile back I read a book for book club When A Crocodile Eats the Sun, written by Peter Godwin. It was amazeballs. If you haven't read it, put it on your list. Zimbabwe has a complicated political situation. I actually don't know a ton about it, but am hoping this book will help me out. I would read anything by Peter Godwin, he has that beautiful way of writing about tragedy. I can't wait to get my pudgy little baby hands all over this book. I may even have to buy the book so that I can mark it up like a textbook. I only do that with the books I truly love.

Anyone else reading awesome things that should not be ignored this summer?

Social Media Killed the Dating Star, Part Three

There's a really good book that's set in the future and describes how young people will basically be screwed because of social media. I'm talking about Super Sad True Love Story. After I read it, I took a scan through my younger brother's facebook and realized that the author of the above book may actually be onto something.

Has anyone ever known someone who is constantly telling you how pretty you look and you come to realize that the sole reason that they are doing this is so that they get a compliment back? I knew a few people like this in college. Anytime you would part your hair differently (no matter how bad you actually looked), these people would say that the LOVED your new hairstyle. Then you would watch their face and realize that they were waiting for the return compliment.

This is how young people today are, times a billion. Go and look at any 16-year-old girl's facebook page. A majority of the profile pictures are just them, hand on hip, chest puffed out pose. A majority of those pictures were self-taken. Almost all of them have a trail of comments telling the person how attractive they are. "OMG.....sooooooo hott!" "Girl, you are beautiful." "Sexy thang!" "You are too cute, I love you." This constant feeding of compliments is probably leading us to an overly confident and overly entitled youth. It's also leading us to a youth that's compliment needy. (Also, what is up with the misspellings? Hot has one "t" and thang is not a word)

In the book Super Sad True Love Story, there are these things called Onion Skin jeans. They are translucent pants. Women wear them in the book to get compliments on their lady bits. Does it really seem that unbelievable that people who are so used to getting multiple daily compliments on their appearance would have to keep upping the ante on sex appeal? I mean, have you seen how teenagers dress? Onion skin jeans may not be too far in the future.

How does all of this fit into dating? Well, can you imagine dating someone who is so compliment needy. I'd imagine a dinner conversation to go something like this:
Girl: John Doe, you look hot. I love your hair. Did you gel it? Haha.
Boy: Yeah, gel. You look hot too. Haha.
Girl: I got a new dress. Do you like my hair? Your hair looks so hot gelled and spiky. Haha.
Boy: Haha. Your hair looks hot. I love you. I love that dress on you, I can see your tits.
Girl: Do you like them? I sent my girlfriend a picture on facebook and she said I looked sexy.
Boy: Haha. You do look sexy and hot.

Not exactly the building blocks of a great relationship. Also, the haha thing slays me. I think it's the "like" for the new generation.

I feel bad for youth. They really don't stand a chance for healthy, normal relationships until they become less dependent on social media for communication.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Quote of the Day

Mike: I totally got trapped into a 10 minute conversation by him. It sucked.

Me: He never does that to me. Sometimes I'm really happy that I'm so awkward to talk to.

On another note, I have a TON of blog posts swirling in my head. And they are good too. But, work is when I usually do my posting and work is so busy that I don't have the time right now. Stay tuned because I'm going to try to crank them out ASAP.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Popcorn and Zen

The picture above really has nothing at all to do with this story, only that it's kind of zenful. Minus the power lines.

Anyhow, I am a clarisentient. I am extraordinarily tuned into emotions. Emotional people get to me because I absorb what they are feeling and in turn feel it as well. When someone is stressed out or sad or mad, I have a hard time being around them because it upsets my chi.

I'm talking about this today because I have been having a hard time at work lately. The short story is that a year ago I started a new assignment and it requires me to be in a different building around a whole new set of people. It was just today that I realized why it bothers me so much, it's because the energy of these people is so terrible, that it knocks me down. Things in this place are always harried, there are too many cooks in the kitchen and everyone is scheming to figure out how they can get their way. It's a terrible environment and I can't leave the emotions at the door. I carry them with me and bring them home, which makes some days unbearable.

Anyhow, thinking about this reminded me of a funny story about my bizarre struggle for inner balance.

In college, one of my greatest friends and I lived in the same apartment building but at opposite ends of a U-shaped hallway. My friend, Kara, is really good at manipulating energies. She can melt stress away simply by changing the lighting of a room.

Well, one night, she was stressed, like frenzied stressed. She had called me to come over and when I walked into her apartment, I told her that she was stressed and the whole apartment was stressed. So, we began her destressing by lighting at least 15 candles all around her room to create a calm environment.

Then she said "I need some popcorn" and left the room to put a bag in the microwave.

When she came back, we were chatting and I told her that I didn't think the calming environment was helping because she was still frantic. As she was starting to tell me all that she was feeling, I interrupted her and said "Something's wrong with the microwave."

I don't know why I knew it. I don't know if it was a feeling in the air or a smell or what, but I knew that something was wrong. Kara had gone out into the kitchen to see the popcorn bag on fire. The microwave was still running and Kara pushed the button to open the door. A huge plume of smoke came out of the microwave. This is when my adrenaline kicked in. I immediately began flapping my arms trying to billow down the smoke. I had grabbed a kitchen towel and was using that to push the smoke away from the fire detector. I had also managed to open two windows, blow out all 15 candles and hide them (we weren't allowed to have candles in our apartment) and run out the door yelling "FIRE". I had taken all of that frenzied energy and put it to use in an emergency.

I made it all the way into my apartment and announced to my roommates to put their shoes on because there was a fire alarm. Then the alarms actually started ringing. I had put my own shoes on and ran out the door, down three flights of stairs and safely away from the building. I finally stopped to notice that no one was really following me. There were only a few people who had made it out of the building and the alarms were no longer ringing. I had to stop and take a few deep breaths in an attempt to gain my composure.

Why was I stressed? I wasn't stressed before seeing my friend, I hadn't made the popcorn, it wasn't my apartment and there was no actual fire. But I couldn't shake it. I held onto the stress of that moment for a good two days. When I got back into the building and back to my friend's apartment, she was like "You were moving so fast, it was incredible."

That's what stress does to me, makes me a whirlwind of frenetic energy. I hate it.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Could You Resist...

...this cuteness. This was when Ramsey first met Kirby. And in typical Ramsey fashion, he just had to be up in Kirby's business every minute. I'm not sure how Kirby felt about it, but hopefully one day they will be best buds.

I haven't been posting as much lately, which is not by pure choice. Work has been so insane. And then there's that little puppy. That little angel who wakes up at 5:00 A.M. and doesn't stop moving until 9:00 P.M. He brings so much joy and so much annoyance at the same time.

Puppy training is going great, but it's a constant job and it's taken a lot out of me. I'm hoping that next week I can bring a lot more material to the Internet world. A lot more material that no one will read.