Monthly Archives: January 2009

2009 is a little rough so far.

Ian continues to be a pain in the ass. We’re trying to schedule a house meeting, and after initially saying let him know and he would accomadate, he said he’s too busy this weekend, and to have it without him and give him the notes from it. It’s kind of tempting to do that, and hand him notes saying “Everyone is pitching in 50 bucks to buy a new vacuum, we’re considering moving the couch, and by popular vote Ian is moving out next week.” Tempting. But we won’t. Oh well.

In other news, I, being at loose ends and not working so much at the moment, spent the last couple days on a vintage hair forum finding out about 40’s hair styles, and pin curling my hair. It didn’t work so well. Maybe next time. I also have an appointment for a hair cut tomorrow. I usually go to the Aved@ school and have the students do it for 20 bucks. But Tenaya was all excited about it, and I want someone who can cut it so it’ll be easier to do 40’s stuff, but still look good when I do nothing, and possibly teach me how to style it myself. So, for the first time in over 2 years, I will pay for a haircut.

I’m slowly getting more and more tense about these two jobs. The desciption of the school one shifted a bit, seems like it’s more design and less teaching, which is great. I sent them an email saying hey, my cover letter might be a bit vague because I had a slightly different posting to work with, but now I’m even more into working for you. Desperate? I hope it doesn’t come off that way. I’ve realized that in being excited about these possibilities, the first of which doesn’t start till may, I’ve sort of been ignoring the many months in between. It’s not quite february yet. So I have 3 months worth of work to find in the meantime. Assuming I even get these. Urgh.

John wants to go skiing at some point. Which will be fun.

There was a crazy jesus lady on my train the other morning. I hate them. SO much. They speak so loudly, and in this constant stream of hallelujahs and repenting and give yourself to jesus and confess your sins and on and on. I wanted to tell her that it was 8 in the morning and she was far too loud and she was making all the quiet christians on the train ashamed, and wasn’t making anyone want to be born again, in fact she’s making them all just hate her. But I assumed that she was crazy and would either start screaming, or beat me. So I changed cars. I’ve never done that before. Usually I just suffer through it, but not this time. It turned out to be a great move, since in my new car I got a seat a stop later. The lord works in mysterious ways? Anyway. I’m also starting to get sick of subway musicians. The ones who actually come on the train. They’ve actually been really polite lately, more subdued and not guilt tripping at all. BUt I still am irritated. I just want to sit there and read my book and not listen to anything. The ones on the platform are fine. I even still like them. I guess I’m just getting grouchy and new yorkish. Which is good? I’m acclimating? Who knows.

I’ve sort of decided that this will be a more non-fiction oriented reading year. I’m slowly going through Color, a pretty good book on how specific colors were originally found and made. It’s pretty good, but sometimes unsatisfyingly incomplete. But I like hearing about her travels around and the people she talks to who still make things that way, or who study this. It’s interesting. But then you come to sections like- in the beginning she talks about as a child seeing blue stained glass and being told that we no longer know how to make that color, it’s lost to us. I’ve heard this before, and it seems odd and not quite right. So I was excited for the Blue chapter. When I got there, she addresses that, and says that of course when she talks to glaziers she finds out that we know what it’s made out of, it’s just that the world has changed and we can no longer make it. Then she sort of talks about how they would build their furnaces next to a forest, and a lot of what made the color what it was came from the beech trees that they burned. And then that’s it. That’s all she reallys ays about that. Which means- We can still make that blue that everyone loves so much! Someone just needs to stop being lazy and relying on the replacement, no doubt easier, methods, and go build a furnace and cut down some beech trees! Her story and explanation just feel really incomplete. But in general, it’s a nice, interesting bit of reading. My mom sent me one of Sarah Vowell’s books, I think that’s next.

In which I hate just about everything. Except my cats.

The stuff with Ian is kind of stupid, but effectively annoying and stressful. Basically, madeline and I are messier than he would like, though we are working on it, and actually have been doing pretty decent. But then left take out bags on the table a few nights ago. Not food, not dirty plates. Empty bags. Clutter, but not dirty. He freaked out and had a tantrum and threw them (and the paper napkins, and one of my catalogues) all over the kitchen floor. Twice. Because I cleaned it up the first time, and I guess he though he hadn’t been clear enough. The way I see it, we were wrong to leave stuff out, but he way the fuck over reacted, and in a really innapropriate way. Then I just spent a really nice evening and day with John (more on this happier subject in a bit) and someone, I suspect him, cleaned off the kitchen table in general by picking everythign up and moving it to the already over crowded side table in the living room. This is really stupid because a) it just moves the mess without fixing it, b) it wasn’t a mess, it was all our bills, laid out neatly, c) we hadn’t paid the bills yet and they got all mixed up with other stuff, and when he’s done this before I’ve lost things, and that could have happened again. Maybe I’m getting too worked up over this. I think I am. But I’m really irritated all the same. Madeline and I acknowledge that we’re not the neatest people, and have been putting in effort. He chooses not to recognize this at all, and to be a jackass. There’s no reciprocity here, and I already didn’t like him very much. End rant.

So! Yesterday I convinced John to go ice skating. By this I mean he came with me to Bryant Park and watched me go around a bunch on my way-dull skates on an overcrowded rink. But it was fun. I only fell down once, and I only did the tripping over my toe pick flailing for balance thing twice. A successful outing all around. I liked it, even though it was ridiculously crowded (friday evening two days before it closes for the season, so it was packed), and I guess we’re going to go to this place on LI sometime. He might even try it.

While we were there, I saw this one kid do a spectacular fall, the one where your feet go right out from under you to the front, and you hang for a second flat in the air before slamming down on your ass. It was a cartoon kind of fall, and pretty funny, and the kid was with people to sympathize and help them up, so I skated off and went to tell John about it. It was pretty funny. The karma payback was terrible though, when I was at his house, after dinner I went down to the basement and did the exact same fall. Except on stairs. I have a great fear of falling headfirst down stairs, and I’d never done it before. Technically, I still haven’t, since I went straight down on my ass, and bounced down the rest of the stairs. It hurt.

But before that, we made hamburgers, and played Apples to Apples, which was great. It was an interesting group, John and his brother and sister, and each of their dates. But it was great, and we laughed a lot, and I think we should do it more often.

I ended up staying the night and the day. We got up at about 3 and made waffles and hung out until he had to drive in to work, and then I took the subway back from manhattan. Not the most efficient way to do things, but I didn’t have much else to do other than feed the cats. Coming home kind of sucked, being both a letdown of not being around John any more, and finding the table cleared off. What a little thing to be incensed about. I’ll try to let it go. But until we all sit down together, I think it’s just going to sort of fester. Argh. 

I’m hoping for these next two jobs. I’m ready for a change of pace. I love New York, but I hate looking for work here. S0 leaving and having solid work for 13 months would be lovely. And then I don’t have to deal with things like this. I can have other things to whine about. It’ll be great.

Hoo boy

I didn’t get the first Florida gig. No big deal. The summer dance festival thing I think I have a very good chance at. One of my references works there a lot and knows everyone. I’m hoping with his endorsement, I’ll get it.

I went on a mad cleaning rampage of my room. The need to clean had been festering for so long that simply cleaning was not enough. I did a rearrange, too. I think I like it. It makes the room seem longer and more narrow, but opens it up a bit because somehow the bed is more separate from everything else. I may switch it around a little more, but for now I like it. and the cats approve.

One of my roommates is being an immature idiot, to the point where I really want to kick him out. I have another friend who wants to move soon, and it would be great to make that exchange, but I don’t know what will happen.

Work is slow. I’ve been sleeping a lot. Not much else to report.

I missed the innauguration. I saw a tiny bit of it when I picked up my laundry. Oh well. I’ll see it at some point. And really, what’s important is what comes next.

Wouldn’t it be nice

Hey, all 3 or so of you who read this. I need happy job thoughts. I’m applying/have applied to three different jobs, all of which I want, and it seems likely that I could get all three. Fortuitously enough they do not interfere with each other. Except the second two, possibly a little bit. But you never know. Anyway.

First up- Designing Kiss Me Kate in Florida! In about a month and a half, they pay pretty well (okay, better than I’ve ever gotten, except that the dance show in nj pays me that, but I have to do my own electricianing, and run the board for that) , and they pay airfare and housing. Huzzah.

Secondly- Famous type dance festival in Massechusetts is looking for a lighting director! They’d pay, and house, and feed me! All summer! Enough of the exclamation points. Anyway. I love working with dance. This would be fantastic. I’m finally qualified, and they’re looking, and let’s hope it works out.

Thirdly- Teaching and designing at a private school in New Hampshire for the school year. This might overlap a little with the dance stuff. I’m not sure yet. I also don’t need to worry yet, as I have not gotten either job. But I like to worry ahead. Also for both of these, they would need to let me bring the cats.

Anyway. Three good jobs, all lined up and waiting to be mine. I hope. I want. I’m qualified for all. My resume is great, my references love me. I have things to look forward to again.

Year in review survey mabob

I was avoiding doing this because lately I’ve been all depressed about work and as such depressed about my whole year. But I just had 5 really good days of work, and there is more on the horizon, and so perhaps now looking back at 2008 will not be quite as defeating.

1. What did you do in 2008 that you’d never done before?
Aquired my own cats. Got a passport and left the country. Hmm. I think that was it for the major stuff.

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
1. Get into a living situation that I really like – Yes! For the most part. Ian drives me sort of nuts, but I love my apartment, and Madeline is great, and it’s fairly cheap and close to a train. All good.
2. Do the reading thing again – Yep. And better than before. Go me.
3. Be more organized about financial stuff, look into doing quarterly taxes- Fail. Big time.
4. Do aerobic type fitness stuff. Right now I’m strong, but not so good with the fast things- eh. A little. I didn’t put much effort in, but trapeze helped.
5. Be much more prudent money-wise- sort of? I didn’t buy anything ridiculous. But I did eat out too much.
6. Keep better contact with friends- Fail. Well. Not entirely. Facebook is helpful, but I’m still not that great.
7. Be less clumsy, injure myself less (as I look at my thumb that I sliced open with the edge of a gobo)- I bruise easily and frequently. But I think I was a little better about this.
8. Make at least half my income from design related work- ha. No. I don’t know if this is possible at this stage in my life. I just added it up, and sadly enough, I made just over 20% of my income from design related work. If I counted the stuff I did for the architect (it was drafting, after all) that number goes up. But it wasn’t theatre related. Bummer.
9. See as much theatre as possible- ‘as possible’ is a broad term. But I did see 22 shows (counting stuff I worked on) which is just under 2 a month on average, and is pretty darn good.
10. Not feel as guilty about things over which I have no control/am not responsible for- yeah, I am getting better at this. Though not great. Baby steps.

So for next year (or this year, rather) let’s say-
1. Strive to be happier with work.
2. Do the reading thing again, but just keep track. No firm number goal. 100 would be good, though.
3. Be more organized about financial stuff, for reals.
4. Not get guilted into taking on extra work beyond what I’m paid for
5. Be much more prudent money-wise.
6. Keep better contact with friends.
7. Cook more? This requires a big commitment somehow. Try to eat out less, at any rate.
8. Do more design and assisting work, goes with 1, I think it’ll make me happier
9. See as much theatre as possible
10. Plan ahead more

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
Nope. Not that I know of..

4. Did anyone close to you die?
Not that I know of.. 

5. What countries did you visit?
Czech Republic! It was beautiful and I want to move there.

6. What would you like to have in 2009 that you lacked in 2008?
More financial stability. More design work. More dance-related work. More friends. More cooking.

7. What dates from 2008 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
Goodness. I’m losing my memory for dates. The day I got my cats, in april. The week I spent showing John around the Bay Area. The week in Prague. August 29th, the day John definitively told me he loved me. Though I had an inkling.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Getting my passport.

9. What was your biggest failure?
Not pursuing design work as much as I could/should have.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Nope/

11. What was the best thing you bought?
The cats. My apartment? Didn’t really buy that, but there was financial commitment involved. My blackberry. I really love my phone.  

12. Whose behaviour merited celebration?
Mine, once in a while.

13. Whose behaviour made you appalled and depressed?
Mine occasionally. Some people that I worked for.

14.Where did most of your money go?
Rent. Food. The cats, especially Snippets vet stuff lately.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Finding an apartment. Various job prospects. Prague. California. The cats.

16. What song will always remind you of 2008?
Is it really sad that the answer is none? I didn’t really attentatively listen to music this year. There might be something, but it’s from long enough ago that I don’t remember. And therefore won’t remember this year by. Sad.

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
Happier or sadder?
The same? Last year I was pretty depressed about work and money. Seems to be true this year. Thinner or fatter? 
Fatter.
Richer or poorer?
I feel poorer, but I made more money this year. It’s hard to tell. Probably about the same.

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Design. Seeing friends. Cooking. Being outdoors.

19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Watching tv. Nothing. I did too much nothing.

20. How did you spend Christmas?
Bouncing between home and John’s.

22. What was your favourite TV program?
Psych, Grey’s Anatomy, Pushing Daisies, Burn Notice.

23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
I don’t think so. I got irritated at a few people, but no longstanding hate grudges this year.

24. What was the best book you read?.
Goodness. I have no idea. Paul Auster was probably my favorite new author. Catch-22 is amazing and was fantastic to rediscover. World War Z was disturbingly real. Fear and Loathing was a lot of fun. Out of Africa was beautiful. I read a lot of great books, and looking through the list to remind myself makes me want to rewrite most of it here.  

25. What was your greatest musical discovery?
Nope.

26. What did you want and get?
Several jobs. Cats. My apartment. Sushi yesterday.

27. What did you want and not get?
Several jobs. More pretty clothes. Books.

28. What was your favourite film of this year?
No idea. Wall-E. Dark Knight. Did I see any others? What a shame. There were a lot I wanted to see and missed.

29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I turned 24. It was good. I did the usual dinner with my parents, and actually did it on my birthday this year. I like my traditional dinner, and I’m going to miss it greatly if I ever am not able to be in california around that time.

30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
Money. More design/assisting work. More books. More time with John. Hmm. That’s more than one thing. Money. Money would have helped a lot. Or work. Which leads to money.

31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2008?
Utile. I continued with wearing more dresses and skirts, which is good. Somehow I tore a hole in the left butt of ALL of my jeans. I have no idea. I have yet to fix any of them, unless you count gaff taping them so they’re just ratty and not revealing. I have no money to buy new pants. This is really sad.

32. What kept you sane?
John. Work. Both drove me insane as well.

33. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Eh. None, really. Paul Rudd is my continual vague crush. When I remember to think of it. Geoffrey Tenant of Slings and Arrows, as well.

34. What political issue stirred you the most?
It was an election year, after all. Prop 8, as well, but I couldn’t vote on it, so I didn’t expend as much energy on it.

35. Who did you miss?
Various friends.

36. Who was the best new person you met?
Madeline. Rose, from Camp, though I met her before, I think. But I never really talked to her or hung out or anything.

37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2008.
Spare money is good.

38. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.

From A Rainy Night in SoHo, by the Pogues
I took shelter from a shower
And I stepped into your arms
On a rainy night in Soho
The wind was whistling all it’s charms
I sang you all my sorrows
You told me all your joys
Whatever happened to that old song
To all those little girls and boys
Now the song is nearly over
We may never find out what it means
But there’s a light I hold before me
And you’re the measure of my dreams
The measure of my dreams

A year of books in review!

So. I set out this year to read 100 books. Last year I aimed for a book a week, and ended up with 70something. I was going to do that again, but then saw someone else aiming for 100, and I thought well why the heck not. I am proud to say that I made just past, to 106. Woooo. I could have done more, actaully. There was a month or so there where I didn’t really read anything, and was behind in my count. If I had kept reading then, on top of everything else, I might have made it to 115. But really, it’s the quality of the books, and no the quantity, right? So here is the list, complete with various comments.

Oh, to note- to help in reaching my goal, I included some of the scripts I read, and re-reads. Cheating? Maybe. But I still had to read them again. And some I had forgotten. So there.

1. Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister- Gregory Maguire

This was good. It was more of a fairy tale than Wicked was, and there was a twist that really, ishould have seen coming. But I didn’t, and it was a nice surprise.

2. Travels with Charley- John Steinbeck

Fantastic. I can’t read this again for a while, it’ll make the wanderlust start again.

3. The Matchmaker (script)- Thornton Wilder

Eh. This is the kids version of Hello Dolly. I designed it for a high school

4. The Stand- Stephen King

This was good and an accurate, I think, portrayal of what would happen if most of the world got wiped out by a super-flu, or something along those lines. Except for the part about god and the devil and all. But you know. Those make for a good story.

5. The Vintage Book of Amnesia- anthology

Good stories about memory loss. A subject that sort of fascinates me.

6. Jonathon Strange and Mr. Norrell- Susanna Clarke

Long. A lot of it unnecessary. I don’t know. I expected to like this more, and maybe that’s why I didn’t like it as much. There were a lot of good parts.

7. From Time to Time- Jack Finney

Good, but not as good as Time and Again. Rather dissapointing in that sense. I need to read it again to make sure I didn’t miss something that would make it better.

8. The Ha-ha- Dave  King

I liked this book a lot. It was an impulse buy, and it worked out well. The main character has a neurological thing so he can’t speak and can’t write, although he’s fine in all other ways. You know how when you read books you start thinking in the tone of them? I walked around feeling like I couldn’t talk.

9. A Long Way Down- Nick Hornby

Good. I like Nick Hornby, and I wasn’t dissapointed.

10. Speaking With the Angel- anthology

11. When We Were Orphans- Kazuo Ishiguro

I liked this, but I can’t think of anything to say about it other than descibing what it’s about.

12. Hell’s Angels- Hunter S Thompson

Very good. And an interesting perspective. Not many would have done as well.

13. Lolita- Vladimir Nabokov

I tried to read this in 8th grade and failed. This time went better. If you read it too fast, you miss how creepy it can be.

14. A Scanner Darkly- Philip K Dick

This was kind of great. I hadn’t seen the movie, not sure if I want to. It’s paced really well.

15. Who Will Run the Frog Hospital?- Lorrie Moore

Middle aged woman reminiscing. In a good way.

16. Moon Palace- Paul Auster

I pulled this off the bookshelf in the living room randomly, and I’m so glad I did. I really like his descriptions, and I’m a sucker for stories involving New York. This had a nice circle to it as well.

17. Immortality- Milan Kundera

I love how his writing flows and how he discusses his characters, and I love the line blurring in this book.

18. Life is Elsewhere- Milan Kundera

Not as good. I made myself read it anyway. His style is less well used here. But it had good parts, and I’m glad I read it.

19. Half Magic- Edward Eager

Fantastic book from my childhood.

20. Gone Bamboo- Anthony Bourdain

Gleefully trashy beach fiction.

21. The Mouse and the Motorcycle- Beverly Cleary

More good kids stuff

22. The Other Boleyn Girl- Philippa Gregory

Good. More soap-opera-ish than I had expected. The movie was then a total letdown.

23. Man Walks Into a Room- Nicole Krauss

This was great until the last bit, where I felt it kind of wandered off. But I like the amnesia premise, and I liked the story.

24. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly- Jean-Domenique Bauby

Very different from what I expected. I don’t know what it is that I expected, really. It’s a good, simple, lovely book, and it’s hard not to think holy crap, he wrote this by blinking at the right letter. A whole book. I can’t even imagine.

25. The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat- Oliver Sacks

Somehow I thought this was fiction. I guess because I only read fiction. But it’s not, and it’s greatly interesting. I should read more of his stuff.

26. Magic By the Lake- Edward Eager

I like this better than Half-Magic, actually

27. World War Z- Max Brooks

This book is fantastic. It’s an oral history of the zombie wars, all of these interviews with people about their experiences and it’s so well written.

28. In Cold Blood- Truman Capote

Another that wasn’t what I expected. But it was pretty great.

29. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas- Hunter S Thompson

This is the one book that was not spoiled by seeing the movie first. If anything, it was enhanced by it. So much fun to read.

30. Heat- Bill Buford

I never want to work in a kitchen. Ever. other than my own, with it’s limited production.

31. Bone in the Throat- Anthony Bourdain

More trashy beach fiction! I should have read this one first.

32. The New York Trilogy- Paul Auster

Three stark, rather obscure bits.

33. Water Street- Patricia Reilly Giff

This was not as good as I wanted it to be. A kids book, set around the building of the Brooklyn Bridge. I wanted more about the bridge. The story was slightly lacking, too.

34. Master and Commander- Patrick O’Brian

Eh. I dragged myself through it because John insisted that they’re great. And it was good. And the series gets better. But it was kind of tough to finish.

35. Prague- Arthur Philips

This has nothing to do with Prague and everything to do with Hungary. Some of it was really interesting. Some of it was not so much.

36. Vinegar Hill- A Manette Ansay

Depressing. Domestic abuse. But very well written. Claustrophobic.

37. Night- Eli Weisel

More depressing! I read most of this sitting in Washington Square park on a sunny afternoon with various nannies and baby carraiges around. Contrast.

38. The Brooklyn Follies- Paul Auster

I might like this better than Moon Palace. But Moon Palace had a bit of an epic feel that this didn’t.

39. The Saturdays- Elizabeth Enright

Really good kids book.

40. Travels in the Scriptorium- Paul Auster

Odd. It’s sort of him being held and interrogated by his characters, for disservices against them, though he doesn’t remember anything. It’s an interesting idea. I’m not sure it was handled as well as it could have been. But it was engaging to read.

41. Oryx and Crake- Margaret Atwood

I liked this a lot. Though the explanation/denoument was a lot simpler than I anticipated. I thought more time had passed. But this was good.

42. Year of the King- Anthony Sher

Holy hell. I wish my journal was this good. This is the diary of an actor in the Royal Shakespeare Company preparing to play Richard III. I know they must have editted and cleaned it up some, but i wish my daily thoughts could be recorded in such and interesting, coherent manner.

43. The Four-Story Mistake- Elizabeth Enright

Better than The Saturdays. Idyllic, ideal childhood.

44. Gentlemen of the Road- Michael Chabon

I had a hard time getting into this, and then got kind of confused. But in the end I got settled, and liked it. I’m not sure it was totally worth all that, though.

45. Never Let Me Go- kazuo Ishiguro

Interesting premise, of cloning and growing people to be organ donors. I liked this better than the other one by him.

46. A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court- Mark Twain

Not waht I had expected. And good. But ridiculous.

47. Good As Gold- Joseph Heller

I liked Something Happened better, this was more broad and meandering, and I kind of got bored at different points. But I love his talking in circles, and the pointless empty dialogue and circumstances that the characters have to deal with.

48. Then There Were Five- Elizabeth Enright

More in the great kids books that I was rereading series.

49. Post Office- Charles Bukowski

He sort of irritates me, but this was short enough to be good.

50. Black and Blue- Anna Quindlen

Great. And sad and distruding and unsettling and sad. But really good.

51. Little Women- Louisa May Alcott

Good grief they’re preachy and goody-two-shoes.

52. Northanger Abbey- Jane Austen

This was irritating. Catherine was so mellowddramatic and idiotic, and I wanted to yell at her. But of course everything turns out well.

53. Kitchen Confidential- Anthony Bourdain

Further confirming that I have absolutely no desire whatsoever to work in a restaurant. But he’s kind of fantastic, and it was fun to read.

54. Post Captain- Patrick O’Brian

More high seas and all. It gets a little better

55. HMS Surprise- Patrick O’Brian

Okay, maybe I do like these books

56. Animal, Vegetable, Mineral- Barbara Kingsolver

This was great and inspiring. Too bad I haven’t done anything about being inspired yet. One of these days I will.

57. The Wind in the Willows- Kenneth Grahame

Why is this book so famous? Toad is ridiculous and annoying and the other characters are annoying for how much they put up with him. But the descriptions are nice.

58. The Water is Wide- Pat Conroy

I finally started this again. It’s fantastic, and depressing.

59. The Mauritius Command- Patrick O’Brian

Best one so far of these.

60. Desolation Island- Patrick O’Brian

Slightly better than the last

61. Shame- Salman Rushdie

I love his writing and descriptions. This is no exception. Shorter than most of his books, which was nice. Sometimes I lose the focus in the length of others.

62. Fortune of War- Patrick O’Brian

Was this the one with the duel? They start to blur together.

63. The Wild Sheep Chase- Murakami

Some of his stuff I really like. This is one of them. I think possibly my favorite.

64. Uglies- Scott Westerfield

I liked that this sort of had the message of – you’re beautiful the way you are, you don’t need to conform and all that. Until she totally does at the end! What the hell? Way to undermine a message. Though she sort of does it for heroic undercover reasons.

65. Pretties- Scott Westerfield

Eh.

66. Specials- Scott Westerfield

The series continues. I don’t know. These were okay, and fun to read, but annoying. I think I might just be too old for them.

67. I Was a Non-Blond Cheerleader- ?

I really wanted something to read, and one of my campers had this. It could have been worse, actually. I was kind of impressed. But ultimately, brain candy.

68. The Second Summer of the Sisterhood- ?

I cared much less about the characters this time around. But these are actually decent teen reading books.

69. Alan Mendolsohn, the Boy From Mars- Daniel Pinkwater

I like his style.

70. Slaves of Speigel- Daniel Pinkwater

Good thing this is a short story.

71. The Snarkout Boys and the Avocado of Death- Daniel Pinkwater

Anything with avocados of death has to be pretty good, right?

72. The Last Guru- Daniel Pinkwater

I liked this one best, I think.

73. Young Adult Novel- Daniel Pinkwater

Weird. Weird weird weird.

74. Snow Crash- ?

Also weird. I starts of kind of great, and then takes a turn somewhere. But it was interesting for the most part.

75. The Secret Life of Bees- Sue Monk Kidd

Not at all what I expected. And great.

76. The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid- Bill Bryson

I like memoirs of this type, and his is fantastic.

77. Out of Africa- Isak Dinesen

I can’t believe I waited this long to read this. Such a beautiful book.

78. Catcher in the Rye- JD Salinger

Not worth the hype. Worth reading.

79. Lullaby- Chuck Palahniuk

Weird. Interesting. I liked it.

80. Shadows on the Grass- Isak Dinesen

Sort of a short version of Out Of Africa. It mentions a lot of her friends who wrote things and mentioned things she talked about. I want to get and read all of those now.

81. Happy Birthday Wanda June(s)- Kurt Vonnegut

I had no idea he wrote this. It’s good, maybe. I’d have to see it.

82. The Girls Guide to Hunting and Fishing- Melissa Bank

This was actually really good. Until the last chapter, when it turned into crap. But it was also mocking crap. But she didn’t do the mocking well enough, and got sucked into the crap herself.

83. March- Geraldine Brooks

This was great. It’s about what the father is doing while the Little Women are hanging out being preachy and prissy. It is anything but. And it’s a great book about the civil war.

84. Franny and Zooey- JD Salinger

This is a book that should be studied, I think. It’s good, but I feel like I need to read it a few more times and discuss and think before I can get everything out of it. Once felt a little like a teaser.

85. Sixty Below- Tony Onraet

This is a great book, all about running around in the wilderness, and trapping and such. That world doesn’t really exist anymore, and accounts like these make me think that’s kind of a shame.

86. The World According to Garp- John Irving

Shameless reread. I love this book.

87. Fairest- Gail Carson Levine

Hmm. I love love love Ella Enchanted. This was nowhere near as good. But it was decent.

88. A Widow for One Year- John Irving

I also really like this one. THough you can’t read too many, especially in a row.

89. Catch-22- Joseph Heller

Holy shamoley. This is quite possibly the best book ever written. It’s amazing. It was a reread, but I had forgotten so much of it that it didn’t feel like one.

90. The Unbearable Lightness of Being- Milan Kundera

I love how he talks about his characters. I read it right after I got back from Prague. I probably should have read it first, since it has bits of the recent history.

91. Scapin(script)- Moliere

Good show.

92. The House of Bernarda Alba(script)- Federico Garcia Lorca

Depressing show. but good.

93. The Good Master- Kate Seredy

Kids book, so slightly idealized. But so good, and lots of  Hungarian fold tales in it, and the illustrations are beautiful.

94. Brave New World- Aldous Huxley

Weird. I had forgotten all but the first chapter, really. I don’t know if I liked it or not. I think so.

95. Level 7- Mordecai Roshwald

Journal of a guy sent way down into the earth, as part of a military base in the event of nuclear war. It’ very well written, you see how his thought process changes, his outlook. This should be on the list of classic literature, int he 1984 area.

96. All is Vanity- Christina Schwartz

Very good, and depressing. A woman writing a book is stuck, and starts stealing from her friends life, and encouraging her to do things for the sake of the story. Very real.

97. Rascal- Sterling North

Fantastic book about raising a racoon. I want one.

98. Bread and Roses- Katherine Patterson

Childrens book about factory strikes. Really good.

99. Slam- Nick Hornby

Eh. I wasn’t so much impressed or into this. It had it’s moments.

100. Harriet Spies Again- Helen Ericson

I can’t believe they let someone else write a harriet book. It was okay.

101. The Outsiders- S.E. Hinton

I purposefully had this book be the 101st, so that it would be outside of my goal. ha. Anyway. It was great. Not what I had thought it would be. I thought Ponyboy would be much more isolated. But it was very good, and sad.

102. Snow Falling on Cedars- David Guterson

I started reading this last year, and put it down a few pages in. I’m glad I picked it up again. Very well written and interesting. And a bit of a murder mystery as well.

103. Reading the OED- Ammon Shea

So, this guy, who likes reading dictionaries anyway, sits down and reads the entire Oxford English Dictionary, and picks out particular words to share. I liked the idea, I liked most of the book, I liked the words. I did not like all of his descriptions. Some of them hinted that were I to talk to him, after a bit he would say something that I would get really disgusted and possibly offended by, and walk away. He would be an interesting person to talk to, but no one I would be friends with.

104. The Silent Boy- Lois Lowry

Kids book, but I one I hadn’t read before. It’s very good, and thoughtful.

105. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society- Marry Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows

I really liked this. It was easy to read, but affecting. Told entirely through letters, which was fun to read.

106. Anna Karenina- Leo Tolstoy

When I told John I had finished with my book goal, he said great, now try that with Russian authors. I had a couple weeks left when I started, and decided I would get this one in there. It also, I feel, makes up for the scripts and some of the childrens books. I actually really liked it. It was much more readable than a lot of other russian things I’ve read. Anna’s deterioration, and Levin’s thoughtfulness have good arcs to them. I need to read another translation soon. This one was good, but formal. Which fit the time and the tone there, but made some of the discussions harder to read. I’ve found another that’s more relaxed. I did a sentence to sentence compare of a bit, and each sentence says the same thing, but in markedly different ways. That’ll be interesting.

Phew. I’m done. And have started already on this years reading. I think I’m not going to have a goal, but I will keep track of what I read. See how many I do naturally.