Back to Diaryland

the latest waddle:

good morning, wordpress - 10:36 a.m. , 2009-07-03

elaborate murder attempt - 2:56 p.m. , 2009-07-01

building a tractor in the basement - 10:42 a.m. , 2009-06-19

ask no questions tell just a few lies - 3:17 p.m. , 2009-06-09

my long lasting flavor really lasts long - 1:10 p.m. , 2009-06-04

2003-01-14 ... 10:17 a.m.


Word Freak---This was great. Just great. Even if you have only played Scrabble with your grandma, this is a damn fine piece of reportage and I loved it.

Fraud---Some laugh-out-loud moments, but otherwise just okay. The best essay is when he gets to dress up like Sigmund Freud and be part of a Barney's department store Christmas display. I think these essays might have originally been newspaper columns or something, because I noticed that they were all nearly exactly the same length, which made for an odd reading experience, all regular and metronomic. Rakoff is inevitably compared to David Sedaris, because he is skinny and gay and a practitioner of self-deprecating humor, and what the hell, I will jump on that particular bandwagon as well: Sedaris seems less brittle and more human. But you will probably enjoy this book just fine.

The Brutal Language of Love---I ate a lot of candy while I read this. Collection of short stories that all border on the very good. Some of the arcs are stumbly and flawed, but the characters and situations are original and intriguing. The first story made me laugh a lot, and made me want to start using "sorry I raped you" as a Hawaiian-style greeting, meaning both hello and goodbye.

Fourteen: Growing Up Alone in a Crowd---Blah blah memoir sniffle parents suck memoir blah. (Oh, I am such a bitch.) But really, it was nothing special.

The Frog King---God. This was awful. Clunky dialogue, so-the-fuck-what characters that all seem like sticom characters. And remember how much I did not like the protagonist of the uber-typical, Oprah-Book-Club-For-Men-Of-A-Certain-Age, High Fidelity? Take that guy, strip away all the likable parts, and you have Davies' main character, whose name I can't be bothered to remember. Maybe you will love it, but I really did not.

Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (again)---Sorry. I just keep remembering bits that seem to pertain to my own life and to the lives of my friends, and then I have to run to the bookshelf and look them up, and I sort of ended up reading it again. It is just that good.

You Are Not A Stranger Here---Eh. Short stories all on a mental illness theme, and that all suffered a bit from Workshop Syndrome. Not too bad, not too memorable either.

The Body In The Mind---Claims that all thinking originates in bodily experience. A lot of good points about spatial relations in philosophical schema, and how our manipulation of the spatial world around us, as infants and children, becomes the basis for later abstract thought. Overstates its case, as all academic books seem to, but a fun read.

After The Quake---Wow. I dreamed about it. I think it may have dreamed about me. Haunting and practically seamless---the stories are not explicitly linked but you will find yourself reading this as if it were one continuous whole.


Is shared by Wade Davis and Simon and Schuster, in the book One River. Page 25, about a friend who brought a saxophone with him to the rainforest: "Sometimes when they were upriver, Martin would wander off and for much of the night Tim would hear soft plaintiff music mingling with the haunting sounds of the rainforest." PLAINTIFF MUSIC? WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT? WHERE ARE THE COPY EDITORS?

It simultaneously cheers and worries me when I am away for a few days and there are dozens of Notifylist sign-ups. You know this is not a daily thing, right? There is a certain addictive and codependent quality between Mimi Smartypants and her web space: if I type up one batch of words and post it, it gets me itching to immediately type up another batch of words. (Words come in batches, like cookie dough. Don't eat the raw words! You will get salmonella!) If I take a day off from typing up batches of nonsense, then the days off can start to add up as I rediscover how much I like to lie around doing nothing. My little web journal is a bit like sex in that regard; getting some only makes me want more. (It is not precisely like sex, however, because [a] you most likely do not weep with gratitude after reading each entry, because you had never been satisfied like that before; and [b] I do not perform my spastic touchdown dance after finishing each entry, the way I do after sex. Who cares if you get penalized for excessive celebrating? I just got laid, man!)

That said, Notifylist is a good thing. I am pro-convenience and anti-frustration, so sign up and then you and I can meet in cyberspace when we are both home, so to speak.

Yesterday from the bus I saw a little sports car on my street with the license plate MOSSAD. Not very secret, hmmm? (Enjoy Mossad's creepy Help Wanted ad here.)

On the same bus, which was horribly overcrowded and late, I became kind of depressed by the antics and loud conversation of a gaggle of scenester alternakids, all competing to see who can be the most outrageous and manic. It was like a messageboard come to life, as they bickered and gossiped and sniped about those who were not part of their clique, and something about the girls, especially, in these kinds of scenes makes me particularly sad. The girls are very focused on amplifying the cute and sexy and faux-aggressive parts of their personalities and tamping down anything that might be more sensitive and nuanced, and eventually I think it stops being an act, and thus there ends up being a whole generation of twenty-something women who still behave this way because they have no idea who they are. Not to throw stones, because I am hardly an expert in the "Knowing Who I Am" and "What It's All About" categories (I'll take "Self-Actualization" for $100, Alex), but I am fairly certain it is not all about wearing the cutest outfit and competing for scraps of attention from self-absorbed indie boys.

And I don't want to privilege one, most-likely-just-as-elitist, subculture over another, but after the corduroy'd and hooded-sweartshirted college kids had screeched themselves off the bus, clutching obscure seven-inches and heading off into the night to do whatever it is they do, I became vaguely cheered by the presence and the freestyling of the Muslim hip-hop kids, who are themselves cliches of a different order but there is something kind of groovy about the juxtaposition----the baggy pants and the skullcaps, the rhymes about how large your penis is and also about how eating pork is wrong, the gold chains and the keffiya.

Arrggh. I have so much work frustration lately, which I think it would be best not to get into here. LT keeps trying to tell me it could be worse, and invents nightmare scenarios where my company puts a giant vat of boiling hot dogs in my office, so I am forced to do my work in a cloud of hot dog steam all day. Things are not quite that bad. But they are close. I like my job, I just need to other people to let me get on with it and stop needing so much hand-holding while they bother me with petty details. The frustration makes me tense, and maybe a little whiny, and I eat too much chocolate and not enough real food and I retreat into books, as you can maybe guess from that list up there.


Unwrap the gift of home food safety. Yeah, who needs Playstation 2 when you have home food safety. Thanks, Mom! Best Christmas ever!

Ants live in the pouches, and bring poop, etc., into the pouches.

I guess...if you like that sort of thing....

What a misleading headline: it would be better if Barney himself was engaged in said porn. And it wasn't even really porn. Oh well, you can't have everything.

Awesome site relating to all things atomic and civil defensive. I highly recommend the RealAudio samples from "If The Bomb Falls." "Tranquilizers are not a narcotic, and are not habit-forming. Ask your doctor for his [ed note: of course, his] recommendation."

Crack whores remember 9-11.

---mimi smartypants is sorry she raped you.


join my Notify List and get email when I update my site:
Powered by