Wednesday, December 30, 2009
Friday, December 4, 2009
Friday, November 6, 2009
I have a fiery temper, and I don't try to hide that fact (it's the Irish in me. . . Or the Italian, I'm never sure which). Over the past week, because of a couple of unsolicited and ill-advised conversations, I've somehow managed to label my mood. I call the over all set-up the "Annoy-O-Meter." It ranges from 1 to 3, because I don't really go halfsies. 1 signifies that I am absolutely peachy; you can tell because I'm laughing and having a general good time. I'm usually laid back and relaxed during stage 1. 2 equals slightly annoyed and on up until you hit 3, which is generally, "Shut your mouth before I decide to shut it for you." It sometimes doesn't take much to rile me to 3.
You see, over this past week I have had at least 3 conversations that have put me at 2, although I haven't hit 3, thank goodness. The first two covered the same thing. I'd missed a get-together, and when asked why, I replied that I had things to do. "Oh," the hapless person would say, "well, you missed a lot of fun." OK! Now, there are two reasons why someone would actually say this. A) they are trying to rub in the fact that I had things to do and they were having tons of super-fun or b) they don't believe my reply. Either way, I am now annoyed. Thank you, people, for pointing out that I missed fun things when I could not make it to said fun things. Much appreciated.
The second conversation started with an older lady, who told me that I should eat more nuts and leafy vegetables if I wanted to be healthier, because she was a vegetarian and when I mentioned I had once been one, she felt it was a chance to tell me what to do. A similar conversation occurred between me and another older lady (you people are not my mother, stop trying to be) who told me I was tired because I drank too many sodas (not because, you know, I had to be at work at 7:30 that morning) and I should really watch my caffeine intake and drink more green tea. And eat more nuts. What is it with the nuts? I imagine this is about annoying to me as it is to someone that likes a pint of Guinness, but has to listen to some nag telling them where their liver is going. I KNOW sodas aren't the healthiest thing in the world; you are not giving me new information. While we're at it, why don't you stop going on fad diets to try and drop weight and work out instead?
So anyway, such is my current rant. And just so you know, I am currently at level 2 on my annoy-o-meter. Don't give me a reason to hit level 3.
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
I like to say that my taste in music is eclectic. Let's just put it this way: if I could choose one band to see right now, it would be Flogging Molly. A close second would be Clutch. If neither of those sound familiar, and you're too lazy to follow the links (you should totally follow the links; they will open your world of music), allow me to sum them up for you -
- Flogging Molly = Irish Punk Rock; Fave Songs: Pretty much all of them. . .
- Clutch = Heavy, Yelling Metal; Fave Songs: Space Grass, Big News From the Party Boat 1; 10001 (yes, that's the name of a song. My thoughts are that its binary code. . .)
I thought it would merely be a little jazz, but it was a full blown festival, with three different stages, many booths selling everything from turkey legs to jewelry to cowgirl hats. It was so crowded, I actually had no problem dancing with myself, hips moving to the rhythms the entire band was feeling. Because if there were so many people, no one would be watching, right? RIGHT?!
It was an all around, basically good time, and if there is one thing I've come to discover over these past few months, it's that music can turn a bad mood around; dancing soothes the soul; singing allows release for emotions that would otherwise be pushed away. Music, in all its many forms, can help one heal piece by little piece.
Monday, October 12, 2009
Castle's Mother: "They've re-made Fame and A Christmas Carol. Has Hollywood completely run out of ideas?"
Castle: "They're going to be making a movie based on Asteroid: The Game, so apparently yes. But, Ryan Phillips is going to be playing the wee triangle, and he's supposed to be really good!"
Ha! I remember that game and it's wee triangle! Ah, good times.
P.S. That's a line from the TV series, Castle, starring Nathan Fillion, who played Mal in both the awesome TV series Firefly, and the movie version-continuation-thingy, Serenity.
Not too long ago, I ran into an old friend of mine and his mom at a Time Out for Women event (Google that, if you're curious). It was cool to catch up with him about his wife and kids, and to see his mom again, who was taking video with her digital camera. He was giving information out about his website company, and it's definitely cool. An online journalling site, and when you're done, you can order your journal to be printed, bound in leather, with your name scrolled into the cover for a reasonable price. Very cool. They even include any pictures you might upload onto your journal.
Well, I found out recently that my friend's mom, Debbie, has recently been diagnosed with breast cancer. So, my friend put together a site for her, for anyone to donate to help with any costs. They only ask for one dollar, although I'm positive they would not mind if you gave more. This is a chance to help someone and her family in their time of need, if only in the monetary sense. Trust me, they don't need that stress on top of that. So, go check out Dollars for Debbie. I promise, you won't regret the donation.
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
So, I found a comment from a fellow blogger, which I followed to her blog. Finding her "All About Me" description highly amusing, I continued on to read her blog, but since it is getting late, and I have class in the morning, I decided to take this quiz, and see how I do. I'm sad I'm not so great at the advanced or expert, but at least I'm above average. Then again, like I always say: the average person is an idiot. . .
Your result for The Commonly Confused Words Test...
You scored 100% Beginner, 100% Intermediate, 87% Advanced, and 87% Expert!
Thank you so much for taking my test. I hope you enjoyed it!
For the complete Answer Key, visit my blog: http://shortredhead78.blogspot.com/.
Friday, August 14, 2009
One thing about shopping and I, I must love what I am getting. It is much the same for online shopping, only more so, for some strange reason. I can't look at an item, think it's "kinda cute" and put it in my shopping cart. I must look at it, and think "OMG! MUST HAVE!"
That doesn't stop me from talking myself out of items once I've put them in my cart. That's where my big sister comes in. For one thing, she does not ever tell me to save my money, which is something that is always going on in the back of my head, "Save Your Money, Save Your Money, Save Your Money. . .". I also trust her sense of fashion. We may not always agree on what looks good, but if I'm not too sure about something, I ask her, and she'll give me an opinion, and I'll take it into account, but if my mind is still telling me that the purchase is too freaking cute, or "So Me" I'll buy it, or ask for it for a Birthday/Christmas. Such was the way with my beloved Uggs. I couldn't see myself spending that much money, but I adored them. My sister had not jumped on the cute boot train yet, so she would say they were ugly, but I listened, and then ignored her advice. Christmas rolled around, and I got a pair from my dear big sister, whom herself was sporting a sweet pair. I still wear those boots, even in these summer days when I know I'm going to spend time in a highly air conditioned building, despite the fact that the heat index at the moment here has gotten to at least 103.
So today I went shopping, and I got what I was looking for. One thing about me: I often know what I want when I go looking, to a T, and so often I don't buy because nothing fits all of my criteria.
Meet Exhibit A: a beanie in my favorite shade of gray, crocheted, with kitty ears. (the picture shows it as black, but the one I ordered was a soft gray).
And Exhibit B: A sterling silver skull and crossbones necklace with a few crystals (the picture shows one with more crystals than the one I got. I do not go overboard with my crystals, mmmkay?). I'm in love with pirate lore and all things piratey, so this seemed made for me. Piratey, yet feminine. Score for me!
Friday, August 7, 2009
In all the horror movies I see, especially those pertaining to zombies, people never go for the head shot first. To me it's common sense. What puts something down quick? Head shot. Bullets to the chest won't kill? Try a head shot. Yet it takes at least one member of a tactical force to die and someone else to make a brilliant deduction, "Well, if you sever the spinal column, or otherwise incapacitate the brain, then they don't get up."
Maybe it's idiotic to argue a point when it comes to zombie movies. I mean, they're a dime a dozen, and most of them are thoughtless shoot 'em ups, but still you'd think it'd be a no-brainer (pun not intended! OK, maybe a little bit).
Moral of the story: When in doubt, go for the head shot.
Thursday, August 6, 2009
I had a bit more to do today than most days. Errands to run before work, frustrations before and during work - well, let me just give you the highlights.
- Run downstairs to tell my apartment manager that I cannot fix my clogged bathtub. Gratefully thank her for agreeing to send the handyman to take care of it.
- Take my dog outside. Wait while she sniffs grass and picks a spot exactly like every other spot.
- Meet with my adviser at the University. Learn that a class that I had taken and passed was not in my records. I must bring a transcript on Monday, and if it isn't on said transcript, I have to retake the class.
- Deposit check at bank. Wonder if the trip is worth going home, or if I should pass remaining time at McDonald's since I'm already halfway to work.
- Find it impossible to sit in McDonald's after I eat lunch. Head home.
- Tool around on my laptop until I have to leave for work.
- Spend hours in mind-numbing conditions, punctuated by stupid questions from co-workers.
- Finally head home. Think about watching a movie: The Shooter? Pirates of the Caribbean?
Wednesday, August 5, 2009
I am a petite girl. At 5' 2", with a very slight build, most people are taller and stronger than I. Being raised in the South, I put much stock into manners. One thing I've learned: hold the door for people who may be exiting behind you. I may be small and slight, but no matter how heavy the door, I will hold it for whoever may be behind me. Nothing is more annoying than getting the door slammed right in your face. I should know. It happens to me all the time.
Sure I grumble about it, and insult, soto voce, the person who didn't bother, but (and here's where my Southern upbringing really comes in) I get really ticked if it happens to be a guy who has decided not to be gentlemanly enough to bother waiting until I can exit. I don't care if he OPENS the door for me. I believe that it's whoever gets to the door first, unless I'm obviously struggling to open it. I think it's ridiculous to expect a guy to pick up his pace so that he reaches the door before me, all because it seems more polite, when I can open the door just fine (usually) on my own. But seriously, when a door practically smacks me in the face because someone doesn't want to hold the door, and when that someone happens to be taller and stronger than me, I hurl insults with the best of them.
I once called a guy on this very thing, because he'd done it to me twice in as many days. BLAM! Right in my face. So I called out to him the second time, once I'd shoved the door open again. What's the freaking deal?! Oh, he didn't see me. Understandable. My size makes me easily misplace-able. Seriously, I've walked around a store with my brother-in-law, who has stopped in the middle of his conversation because he'd lost track of me. I was right beside him, but he didn't see me because he wasn't looking down low enough. It happens.
But, really, if you're walking out of a building, have the courtesy to hold the door. And if you don't feel like holding the door, wait until I reach and I'll hold it open for you. And then let it slam in your face before you even take two steps.
Monday, August 3, 2009
To put it mildly, I believe Orson Scott Card is a completely awesome, engaging, complex, and all around awesome author. I've been on a Card kick lately, so I've read several of his books. . .again. He brings to life the women of the Bible in his Women of Genesis series: Rachel and Leah; Rebekah; Sarah. All brought to brilliant light, inspiring me (at least) and showing that he can do what many authors struggle with - bridging that gender gap. He blows you away with the complex and enthralling Ender series. My favorite happens to be Enchanted, a re-telling of an old fairy tale in an old country. LOVE IT!
Another gem I happen to be re-reading at the moment is a book that is edited by Card. Future on Ice is an anthology of eighteen different science fiction stories. Not only are all of the stories interesting, deep, and full of win, but Card writes an introduction for each story and its author! Before the short story "Cabracon," he really gets on his soap box and opens up the world of science fiction as its viewed by publishers, and what it means to be a sci-fi writer, the good and the bad.
If you love sci-fi, or are just in the mood for some good reading, I encourage you to pick up one of Cards many novels. He never fails in his endeavors, and if you want to read an anthology, start it out with Future on Ice. Weird and gritty makes for good reading!
Friday, July 24, 2009
I know it has been awhile, but there has been just too much going on in my life, and blogging seemed so trite and pointless. But people keep saying I need to try to keep things normal; I need to keep up with my routine, etc. Whatever. Here's a meme to get things kicking again, which I stole from my sister at Stumbled Into Fate.
1. What is your current obsession?
Oh, there are so many. Going to the shooting range; reading the newest in fantasy and chick lit; Dr. Pepper.
2. What do you hate the most that everyone else seems to love?
I dislike reality TV. I'm not talking Dirty Jobs or Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern, I mean like the VH1, MTV, Real Desperate Wives That Live Somewhere or Other. Gag.
3. What are you wearing today?
I have on a bit of a dressy light blue v-neck shirt, paired with my favorite jeans and probably my gray sneakers, although I'm sporting the barefoot look at the moment, since I'm sitting alone at home.
4. What's for dinner?
Spaghetti Marinara that I have frozen in my freezer (TV dinner), plus chips and dip, along with a heaping dose of whatever the Travel Channel wants to throw my way.
5. What would you eat for your last meal?
A cheeseburger, fries, hot apple pie, and a ginormous Dr. Pepper.
6. What is the last thing you bought?
Gas for my car. I avoid buying frivolously lately. I'm going to Wingstop, and this will be the first time I've spent money on something I don't really need for awhile.
7. What are you listening to right now?
My TV. Some weird show that will discuss Harry Potter, "the greatest children's classic of a generation."
8. What do you think of the person that tagged you?
I didn't actually get tagged. :/ But I love my sister. :)
9. If you could have a house--fully paid for and totally furnished--anywhere in the world, where would it be?
Texas. Or possibly somewhere pretty, with seasons, a small suburb community a la Gilmore Girls.
10. If you could go anywhere in the world for the next hour, where would it be?
I haven't been to an arcade in forever. . .
11. What is one of your hobbies?
Reading. Lol. Was that hard to guess?
12. What is ONE of your favorite quotes?
"Your trials are but a small moment. . ." D&C 119.
13. What is your favorite color?
Gray. Dove gray.
14. What is your favorite piece of clothing in your wardrobe?
I love my Hydraulic jeans. A little distressed and a lot comfortable.
15. What is your dream job?
I would love to be the editor of PC Gamer magazine.
16. Describe your personal style.
One hundred percent casual. Jeans, t-shirts that are probably a little too short for most peoples' comfort, and flip-flops, or some Chucks.
17. What is your favorite tree?
I like Oak trees. They represent strength and wisdom, at least to me, and those are two things I need daily. Also, nothing is nicer than sitting, reading under one on a cool Fall day.
18. What are you going to do after this?
I'm going to Wingstop to meet a friend.
19. What is your favorite fruit?
I love Cantaloupe. Especially when it is soft and juicy.
20. What inspires you?
Music, scriptures, people, art. It depends on my mood and what touches me that day.
21. Who was the last person that you kissed?
;) My SO (that's code for significant other.)
22. What are you currently reading?
I'm re-reading Moon Called, by Patricia Briggs. I love her Mercedes Thompson series.
23. Go to your bookshelf, take down the first book that you see with a red binding, turn to page 26 and type out the first line.
Goosebumps: Piano Lessons Can Be Murder- "She always acts like that," I told them.
24. What delighted you the most today?
Coming home and seeing my dog after work.
25. By what criteria do you judge a person?
The way they speak to me or those that I care for. If they have an attitude, they better believe they'll get one right back.
26. What was your childhood nickname?
Schnookie. It's German.
27. What are you afraid of?
Losing those I love most. Facing those fears is the worst thing ever.
Whelp. Enjoy. Hopefully I'll have another blog to write out soon.
Friday, July 3, 2009
Despite the doom and gloom title, this is not an emo posting. Instead, it is one that I will use to first say that Burn Notice is up and running, and OMGsh, I LOVE Burn Notice. Is it bad that Fiona is my total hero? Nothing can't be solved with some C-4 or a shotgun and some bad awesomeness.
But, browsing through Hulu after watching the latest Burn Notice, I found an old show I never got into because when I started watching, I started watching late, and so had no idea what the frak was going on. Dead Like Me, in which there are some lines that make me laugh, the main character makes some observations that I can't help but agree with ("Bad people are punished by society; good people are punished by Murphy's Law."), and the career counselor? Dolores Herbig "As In Her Big Brown Eyes"? Totally reminds me of my boss. I am not lying. Oh, I mean my ex-boss, who moved. But seriously, imagine going to work to deal with THAT every day.
I know that this subject is probably old, considering I've had it on my iPhone almost as long as I've had my iPhone, but the Pandora Radio app is teh awesome. Not only was it free, but it seems to know what I want to hear next.
All you have to do is tap it up, and type in what you want to hear: Fall Out Boy, Jack Johnson, etc., or even a type of music: Indie, Alternative, Rock, Pop. Then the app takes what you gave it and gives you your favorite songs, and introduces you to new songs by similar artists, or artists whose sound fits what you want to hear.
A good example: I'm currently listening to the Jack Johnson radio station (yes, he has his own on Pandora radio), and suddenly a Bob Marley song came on. I am not a big Bob Marley fan. In fact, I'm not really a fan at all. But the song Is This Love segued from Jason Mraz and I told myself I should listen before judging, so I did. Does anyone else agree that that song is kind of, well . . . sexy? So, I gave it a thumbs up, another great aspect of the app.
You can give a song a thumbs up or a thumbs down, depending on how you're liking it. A thumbs down stops the song and moves you onto the next. Also, you can pause on any song, or skip any you're not in the mood for. I've been listening for over a half hour, and I must say that I've given a thumbs up to most of the songs.
Honestly, I don't see why you wouldn't have this app, even if you don't listen to music that often. I only listen to music when I'm in certain moods. I'm a moody listener. :P And yet, here I am, listening to Dispatch, a band I've never even heard of, and I'm thinking about giving it a thumbs up. It certainly makes the afternoon more palatable.
Pandora has opened the box to a whole new music world for me and it's all good from what I can hear.
Thursday, July 2, 2009
So, I had a pretty stressful, annoying day, starting with a crappy class and ending with a student that didn't understand the words "we're closing." So, I came home hungry and cranky. The best thing for me when I'm cranky is just to crank up the tunes. Get lost in some really aggressive song like, "Stinkfist," by Tool, or "Scream," from Avenged Sevenfold.
Once my need to punch someone in the face abates, I like to wind down by listening to some smooth greats of my generation. Jack Johnson, Jason Mraz, Citizen Cope. Those are my favorites, and I haven't really found others that hit the spot quite like them, so if anyone has some suggestions, feel free to let me know! I am all for the easy-does-it croons that Jack Johnson and friends deliver, especially on days when I need to take Advil and remember to breathe deeply.
In conclusion, here's some great lyrics to get you in the easy-going mood:
There's no combination of words
I could put on the back of a postcard
No song that I could sing
But I can try for your heart
Our dreams, and they are made out of real things
Like a, shoebox of photographs
With sepiatone loving
Love is the answer,
At least for most of the questions in my heart
Like/ why are we here? And where do we go? And how come it's so hard?
It's not always easy and
Sometimes life can be deceiving
I'll tell you one thing it's always better when we're together
MMM it's always better when we're together
Yeah, we'll look at the stars when we're together
Well, it's always better when we're together
Yeah, it's always better when we're together
And all of these moments
Just might find their way into my dreams tonight
But I know that they'll be gone
When the morning light sings
And brings new things
For tomorrow night you see
That they'll be gone too
Too many things I have to do
But if all of these dreams might find their way
Into my day to day scene
I'd be under the impression
I was somewhere in between
With only two
Just me and you
Not so many things we got to do
Or places we got to be
We'll Sit beneath the mango tree now
It's always better when we're together
Mmmm, we're somewhere in between together
Well, it's always better when we're together
Yeah, it's always better when we're together
MMmmmm MMMmmmm Mmmmmm
I believe in memories
They look so, so pretty when I sleep
Hey now, and when I wake up,
You look so pretty sleeping next to me
But there is not enough time,
And there is no, no song I could sing
And there is no, combination of words I could say
But I will still tell you one thing
We're better together.
- Jack Johnson
*Courtesy of A-Z Lyrics
Thursday, June 4, 2009
As those who have read my past posts know, I am a huge fan of the Discovery Channel. It is always on in my apartment, so I hear all the new shows going on.
Now, before I detail the newest in Discovery Channel learning, let me explain a bit about myself. I have several phobias, one of which is the ocean. I do not like not being able to see what's under the water (and therefore probably headed right for me); I do not like crazy undertows and rip tides that wish to pull me under or out and drown me; I do not like the scary predators that lurk in the depths. Other bodies of water are fine. I'm perfectly fine in a swimming pool. I enjoy lakes and rivers. Until now.
River Monsters is a brand-spanking new show on the Discovery Channel, and it details the monsters that no one knew were lurking in the depths and along the banks of calm rivers and placid lakes. Giant Alligator Gars and humongous catfish and goodness knows what else. Bodies of water? Slowly becoming a bigger phobia for me. Thanks River Monsters!
Tuesday, June 2, 2009
Saturday, May 30, 2009
I was eating some candy just now, chewing it up and savoring the sweet and tart flavor, when I began to wonder how my future children would view my everyday sweets. I can already tell that the generation far below me (I'm talking 8 and 9 year olds here) are into gross things that I wouldn't try: sour gel-like candy you squeeze from the tube, purple and green ketchup (ok, not candy, but still! Yuck!) painfully sour hard candies and flavorless sweet lollipops.
It brought my mind back to when I tried a few of the things my own father and grandfather found delicious, and remembered fondly from their own childhoods. For one, my grandfather loved his licorice. Licorice is made from the herb Annice, and after a few tries I found the flavor growing on me. And then there was clove gum, which my dad and grandfather both enjoyed. When I chewed it, I liked the spicy-herbal flavor, but I was baffled as to why it didn't have a "real" flavor: strawberry or cherry. Instead, it was made from herbs, once again. And how could I forget my bout with horehound? My grandfather raved about how delicious it was, but the moment I began to suck on that candy, I wanted to spit it out. Horehound is, again, made from a flowering plant, instead of a sweet fruit like I was used to. In fact, none of what I had tried could have been described as "sweet" which is what I expected from any candy that crossed my lips, unless I decided I was in a "sour" mood.
Of course, the old classic that I don't think will ever phase from generation to generation *fingers crossed!* is Root Beer. It's made from the roots of the sassafras tree, although I'm not so sure they use the real flavoring in more commercial sodas. Still, all of the "old-fashioned" candies and drinks were made from nature; roots and herbs and plants, instead of artificially sweet fruit flavors that my generation enjoys. The older generations had candy made from things that didn't take a lot of steps to make. In fact, I'm pretty sure that if they were out of gum, they probably had cloves handy, or chewed on other things that were readily around and flavored their favored candy. Nowadays, you might want a cherry flavored Popsicle, but eating a real cherry is an entirely different taste experience.
So, will my children make funny faces when I introduce them to Sweet Tarts? Will they complain it's not sweet or sour enough, that it's too powdery or hard? And where will the next generation's taste buds take them, radio-active goo?
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
Friday, May 15, 2009
I stared at my little pile of woebegone socks and wondered what exactly lived in my dryer, snacking on one or the other of the pairs. So, I took all of those lonely socks, and put them BACK in the dryer. Another load goes through and VOILA! Socks that have found their matches. Or so my theory goes. I'll let you know how it turns out.
Monday, May 11, 2009
Point of this blog: I am not only a girly geek, but a handy one, too!
Thursday, April 23, 2009
- Are those denim?? A customer walks in wearing what looked to be a pair of jeans because of their stitching and style, but they were so stretchy, and the girl who wore them filled them to their stretchiest point, that I found a hard time picturing them as an actual pair of jeans.
- At some point, I realized that I had a small patch of hair that was an inch long hanging in front of my very eyes. I kept trying to brush it to either side, but on further investigation, I discovered that they were actually part of my bangs. After a moments consideration, I grabbed above-mentioned scissors, and cut the offending strands relatively level with the rest of my bangs. The *snip* sound was really unsettling, though, since I was pretty sure I could easily screw my hair up.
- Aviators are so. In. I counted at least four people coming in with aviator sunglasses, including a college student that reeked of rich parents, sporting a white pair that I'm sure are very fashionable. For women, metros, and gays. They looked very expensive. Also, why were people wearing sunglasses inside? It was starting to annoy.
- How do haikus go again? Oh yes, five syllables in the first line; seven syllables in the next, and five in the last. Yeah - I totally earned that A in College Lit. Also, now I'm thinking on iambic pentameter. . . Anywho, here's an example of a haiku - Stuck at desk all day, nothing to amuse me but, stupid screen savers. Thanks to Haiku-o-Matic for that oh-so-appropriate poem!
Monday, April 20, 2009
The newest of my books that I've recently finished was actually based on a TV show, one of my favorites, Burn Notice! I know others who are fans, so I hope this entry is entertaining to them!
Usually, I'm against reading book tie-ins. If it's based on TV, video/computer games, or movies, it's usually crap. However, I happened to spot it on its shelf, and since I was boredly waiting for my dad to finish his browsing, I sat down and took a sneak peek at the first chapter. To my surprise, the book was not based on any existing episode (that I know of), and it was really true to the characters of the actual show. This could be because the author collaborated with the writer of said show.
The Fix, by Tod Goldberg outlines the story of burned spy Michael Westen, his sort of ex-girlfriend, Fiona ("It's complicated"), and his best friend Sam Axe as they go about solving someone's problems in the midst of solving their own. Or really, Michael's own.
I would definitely recommend this fun read to any Burn Notice fan. See if you can tell the difference between the on-screen characters and their written word counter-parts!
Sunday, April 5, 2009
Friday, April 3, 2009
Each blog I've visited in the past 30 minutes or so has been discontinued, or is so new that I've finished it within five minutes time. I've read all the updates on my Google Reader, and I've checked out Wikipedia for random things to learn, and I am thoroughly bored out of my mind. In times like these, I can only turn to a book, but sometimes I need to take a break *gasp!* from even my current book of choice.
I suppose I'll go see what's on TV, but I can tell even now that that will be a pointless endeavor.
Monday, March 30, 2009
Just finished up with the lovely YA book, Inkheart, by Cornelia Funke, a book which made me wish. But first, an overview.
One of the main characters is a strong, brave little girl named Meggie, who discovers through a series of unfortunate events, that her father can read characters OUT of books. Not only that, but he somehow managed to read several very bad men out of a book long ago, replacing those men accidentally by reading her mother and their three cats INTO the book. These men create a little circle of Hell for themselves in the Italian countryside, but years later they finally find "Silvertongue," as they've taken to calling Meggie's father. And their leader, Capricorn, wants him to read others out of the book, including his very special, very evil friend.
Her father escapes, but Meggie is captured, at first as bait, but then she discovers, in the dark of one night while trying to comfort herself with a little bedtime reading, that she has inherited her father's gift. Now they want Meggie to read above mentioned bad friend into existence, in order to execute some of Meggie's own friends. So it's up to her to save the day.
It was a lovely read, with many twists and turns. It also made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside because it managed to convey exactly how I, myself, feel about books, the written word. Now as for my wish, instead of reading characters OUT of books, wouldn't it be great if I could read myself into stories? Who hasn't wanted to play main character in their favorite novel?!
Monday, March 23, 2009
I know that it has taken me a little longer to post this newest review, but consider for a moment the fact that it is Stephen King I am talking about here, and that the book I have finished is none other than the completed, unedited version of The Stand, which is over 1,000 pages long. And those letters weren't exactly typed in your average-sized print, either.
Imagine a world where humans have determined their own fate, where one man and his family can spread a highly communicable disease that takes over the world, destroying millions of people in a painful and quick fashion. Only a few are immune, and those few start to gather. But there are two sides to this story: Some gather in the East, and some gather in the West. Those who gather with the Dark Man are themselves loaded with evil, and those who gather with Mother Abigail have to consider that there is, in fact, a God, and that he has decided to help the human race to stand against evil, before that evil can obliterate all that is good.
In this world not far off from our own, you meet some pretty good characters, and some pretty twisted characters. No one is safe from the scythe of death either, to my annoyance, but such is the way of King, I suppose. This is one of those books that will get you thinking, wondering about the significance of this, and marveling at how neatly that ties together. A good read, if you can handle Stephen King's dark and ruthless writing.
Friday, March 6, 2009
I'm not a big fan on YA books, but my sister sent me Coraline, by Neil Gaiman, with many good things to say, and so i decided to give it a try. It was just the kind of weird-quirky I used to love as a kid.
Coraline, the heroine, finds a door in her drawing room that seems to lead to nothing, but one day, it leads to something. Another world with another mother and another father that do not mean what they say, and want her to stay forever and always. To make it so, they have taken her real parents. So, brave quick-witted Coraline must find her parents, along with a few other things, in order to escape. But can she really escape?
This novel brought to mind all the out-there bizarre novels that take me to worlds that cannot be, and yet are within the pages of one book. I've read an excerpt from an upcoming novel of his that promises more of the same. I completely applaud the truly imaginative and creative skills of story-tellers like Gaiman.
Thursday, March 5, 2009
Another book done and done. Deja Dead, by Kathy Reichs, is the first in a series of detective novels in which the main character, Temperance Brennan, solves mystery in her field of forensic anthropology. If any of this sounds familiar, it's because the hit TV series Bones is based on these books.
In the first of this gritty, tough series, Brennan must work to find a killer with a lot of rage toward women. Although there is no outward sign that they are connected, except for the brutal way in which they are killed, Brennan feels that these deaths are all caused by the same killer. And so begins her quest to connect the dots and get those above her in the chain of command to see that these are serial cases. Unfortunately, as she works to find the killer, the killer has already found her. . .
This novel was a lot grittier and more explicit than the TV series, which happens to be one of my favorite shows. As is usual with written works, there was a lot more leeway for language and descriptions than there is for TV. The main character, however, was smart as a whip, tough, and brave. I liked her as much as her on screen portrayal, even though they were not portrayed in the same manner.
Saturday, February 28, 2009
Today on Discovery Channel, they're doing a bit of a boring documentary on the state of things in China. The biggest economic growth in China is coal mining. Thousands of workers break their backs in the mines, breathing bad air and risking their lives to provide for their families, because the coal mining industry is just booming over there. It's one of the reasons they are growing economically, and economic growth is a top priority in China. In 2006, 47 miners died in the U.S of mining related accidents. 47,000 miners died the same year of mining related accidents in China.
This is all very sad to me, especially when I think of the families-wives and children who must worry that their husbands and fathers may not return. It's not just a dangerous field in China, it is a dangerous field in the U.S. Yes, the death rate was smaller here, but so is the amount of workers in such a field.
What I happened to find truly ironic about this, however, was that in the middle of a commercial break during this documentary outlining the atrocious conditions of mining, a certain commercial popped on. Maybe you've seen it. Obama, with his usual charisma and crowd of worshipers cheering him on, is calling for a "change." No more relying on outside countries for our fuel sources, no! Instead, we should concentrate our efforts on trying to find a way to use COAL as our fuel, instead of oil. It could create jobs for thousands! It could stimulate our economy!
Tell me I'm not the only that has just compared our President's intentions with those of Communist China's. . .
Friday, February 27, 2009
Number 5 of the Jaz Parks series has come, and of course I had to grab it for a read. The only one I (accidently) haven't read is the second one, but I fear I'm too far ahead to turn back now. In One More Bite, by Jennifer Rardin, Jaz travels with her crew of three to protect, surprisingly, one of the bad guys. An evil head witch in the cult of Scidaire, an ancient goddess of evil, is being targeted by an assassin who uses snakes as her main form of weaponry. Lots and lots of snakes.
And although Jaz can hardly stand protecting the bad guy, allowing said bad guy to die would alter the balance of powers between the cult, the Weres, and the Vamperes. So she must identify and eliminate this assassin before its too late, whilst keeping herself and her crew protected from the spirits of Scotland while she's at it!
A fun read. I love all the books in this series, and when I read the title of this one, I feared the worst. An ending to a fun series with an awesome heroine. Not so! There is another to look for ahead! Happy me!
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Yet another book completed, and in so little time. It wasn't a tough one, however, so the boost in ego that I might have felt from finishing two books in such quick succession is not present. :/
What's a Ghoul to Do?, by Victoria Laurie gives a look into the life of a sassy ghost buster/ psychic medium with a sassy assistant and an awesome African Grey parrot pet named Doc. Since Victoria Laurie is herself, allegedly, a psychic medium, she writes from that viewpoint, which gives a fascinating insight into how those gifts really work, if you believe in that sort of thing.
In this first novel of her Psychic Eye mystery series, M.J is contacted by a doctor who does not believe his grandfather committed suicide, as the police have ruled. While investigating, she must solve other foreboding mysteries, such as why an agitated female spirit who has a habit of pushing things, and people, around is still on this plane of existence, not to mention why the good Dr.'s not-so-good father is running around town, causing mischief and generally being secretive, all while avoiding being killed by a mystery man for no reason she can see.
Like a said: a short read. But a good mystery, especially for those who like a more paranormal slant on their stories.
Monday, February 23, 2009
I finished off another book in the Mercy Thompson series (a series that I actually started fairly close to when IT actually started, which hardly ever happens to me). The book is the newest release, Bone Crossed, and it did not disappoint!
Mercy is being targeted by the local vampire seethe, which just adds to her worries when she also has to think about what it means to be an Alpha werewolf's mate. While she fights the inevitable, romantically and magically speaking, she gets out of dodge, hoping to facilitate negotiations between the Pack and the Seethe, i.e. not get in the way.
Conveniently, an old college friend shows up and asks for her help in getting rid of a ghost which is dogging her 10-year-old son, and so she heads out in hopes of helping the mischievous poltergeist move on, only to discover she has fallen into the territory of a vampire that makes the local seethe look tame, and things aren't what they seem at all.
I waited for this book for months, and was Irish-jigging excited to find it. Definitely worth a night of full-steam-ahead reading!
Monday, February 16, 2009
I took my dog outside this morning, not for a full on walk yet, just to do some business, and we came upon a giant sign affixed to the fence of my apartment complex for a local guy running for some sort of office or other. It was giant, it was bright, and it hadn't been there before. My dog looked at it out of the corner of her little chocolate brown eyes, crab-walked a bit around so that we were on the far side of the sidewalk, and continued on. On the way back down the same sidewalk to my apartment, she did the same. She refused to look straight at it, and gave it a wide berth.
Amen, Sophie, amen.
Saturday, February 14, 2009
I'll admit, I "borrowed" a book from my sister's shelf. P.I. on a Hot Tin Roof, by Julie Smith. Lately, I've been watching a lot of thriller/mystery TV shows, specifically Bones, as well as Monk, Psych, and Burn Notice, and all of those combined have put me in the mood for some great mystery novels. When I saw this particular book had been left on my sister's shelf at home, I picked it up and started reading.
The P.I. mentioned in the title is Talba Wallis, a whip-smart private investigator by day and New Orleans-famous poet by night, who goes undercover in order to get her friend, Angie, off the hook for something she had been framed for. But things get complicated when the man she is investigating turns up dead, and his fiance hires her to find the killer. The case has many twists and turns, which I really enjoyed, because sometimes I know "who-dun-it" before the book really gets to that point, so finding one that kept me guessing until the very end was a real treasure.
Things I didn't like about the novel, however:
1. Talba is kind of weird. Especially her alter-ego, Baroness de Pontalba.
2. The author, who is white, is writing about the life of a black woman. I felt often that she was over-compensating for the lack of experience she had in that field, and I was a little annoyed that anytime someone of a Caucasian descent was introduced, they were automatically labeled as racist, especially if they were middle-to-upper-class.
3. I KNOW it was a New Orleans based book, but the accents and bad grammar were KILLING me.
All in all, I'd recommend this book, if only for the good mystery it provides.
Little known fact about Geek Girl: I am superstitious. Not in any crazy, out there kind of way, but certain things alarm me. You won't catch me stepping under a ladder, or opening an umbrella inside, because seriously, why risk it? So of course I was dreading Friday the 13th. I waited for most of the day for something to go wrong, some sort of sign that bad luck was upon me. But it never happened, thank goodness!
I made it through the day, problem-free, which makes me wonder if it's trying to loll me into a sense of security and the BAM! hit me with some bad luck. Anywho, here are some facts about Friday the 13th, gleaned from that great little website that librarians love and hate, Wikipedia.
1. The fear of Friday the 13th is called paraskavedekatriaphobia. (That's me!)
2. There is no written evidence for a "Friday the 13th" superstition before the 19th century. (This gives me pause. An ancient superstition holds more sway for me than does a newer one.)
3. However, it can be traced back through oral traditions, as according to author Charles Panati, one of the leading authorities on the subject of "Origins."
The actual origin of the superstition, though, appears also to be a tale in Norse mythology. Friday is named for Frigga, the free-spirited goddess of love and fertility. When Norse and Germanic tribes converted to Christianity, Frigga was banished in shame to a mountaintop and labeled a witch. It was believed that every Friday, the spiteful goddess convened a meeting with eleven other witches, plus the devil - a gathering of thirteen - and plotted ill turns of fate for the coming week.So, there you have it, some facts and lore. History, even, to back up why Friday the 13th is considered unlucky. Some say, in these modern times, that it is merely a combination of the unlucky number 13, and the unlucky day, Friday. Either way it gives me the heebie-jeebies.
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
I recently completed the book The Mercy Seller, by Brenda Rickman Vantrease. Some may recall this author from her previous book, The Illuminator, which I have yet to read. The Mercy Seller follows the lives of two main characters, Anna and Brother Gabriel, during the uprising of the Lollard cause. Anna, who believes that man needs no mediator to God and that all should be able to read the Bible in their own language, instead of the Latin that the Church decrees by law, goes through unimaginable hardships because of her faith. In fact, I wasn't sure whether I wanted to put the book down because it was so sad, or continue reading because her character, strength, faith and wisdom was so inspiring. Brother Gabriel, who is given the job of finding those guilty of heresy and supporters of the Lollard cause, comes into contact with Anna, thus setting an entirely different path for himself than he ever could have forseen, and going through a few trials of his own.
In the end, I finished the book. If you happen to pick the book up yourself, you should do the same.
Sunday, February 8, 2009
So the second book that I've read so far, is Confessions of a Shopaholic, by Sophie Kinsella. If I read one book of a certain genre, it usually gets me started on that particular genre, so much so that I stay on it for a while. Now, I know that it has been a week since I actually updated my blog, but it's not because it has taken a long time to read this book. I have another book that I am also almost finished with, and it is decidedly heftier. When I finish that one (almost there!), I will definitely update with that one as well.
Anyway, back to the first book mentioned. I had high hopes for this particular book, mainly because Sophie Kinsella happens to be one of my favorite chick lit authors. But the character in this book was annoyingly naive and matierialistic. I understood all of the parts of describing her anxiety, and her need for distraction, which she finds through shopping, but when the bills start to pile up and she does nothing to stop the cycle, I slowly became frustrated. My opinion of the main character dropped even lower when she discovered that her best friend and flatmate's cousin is the fifteenth richest bachelor in Britain. During the first part of meeting the cousin, the main character describes him as annoying and creepy, yet when she discovers that he is rich, she begins to plan how they'll fall madly in love, and . . . just ugh. The ending redeems the novel somewhat, but all in all, not one of my favorites.
Saturday, January 31, 2009
A while back I bought Queen of Babble in the Big City, by Meg Cabot, an author that I've nejoyed for a few years. I've read nearly every one of her books. However, when I began this particular book, the lead character irked me a bit. I suppose I just wasn't in the mood for her ditzy, talkative personality. But I recently picked the book up again, since it has been in my to-read pile, and I found that I am enjoying it quite a lot.
The Queen of Babble finds herself in New York with her new boyfriend, who has quit his high paying career to go back to school to become a doctor. Through a series of events, she finds two jobs, one that pays in cash, and one that pays in experience toward her dream of becoming a wedding gown specialist. What enues is an enjoyably light read, filled with a few giggles, a bit of a shocker or two, and a realization (for this reader, at least) that the Queen of Babble may have a big mouth, but she more than makes up for it with a big heart.
I would recommend it to any fan of chick lit, or for anyone who enjoys Meg Cabot's characters and books, or just wants a light read. it'll be worth it. Trust me. However, if this book does strike your fancy, I recommend reading Queen of Babble first, since it is the beginning of the series.
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
So, it's been forever. But, I did find a neat little idea from velocibadgergirl, and I'm steal, urm, borrowing it.
I say ... and you think ... ?
1. Unwanted :: sad
2. You’d better :: not shout
3. Woman :: man
4. Weighed :: truck
5. Upright :: no scoliosis!
6. I feel :: happy, Oh so happy. . .
7. Ill :: ailing
8. It’s like :: You know!
9. Poor man :: he lost his puppy
10. Great :: balls of fire!
I'm a little strange, if you haven't figured that out already. . .