Monday, August 30, 2004

It is raining and wild outside…

... but I am content and comfortable inside on my couch with my dog and cat and computer and a carrot cake candle, and Def Poetry Jam on TiVo. The power went out a few minutes ago; just as suddenly as it went it came back again, my link to the online world restored along with the bit of my sanity that had flickered with the lights. The internet is like air and water, like a vein, a synapse, a direct connection into my consciousness from far-away places and lives I could have lived and/or wouldn't want to.

The storm has knocked out our satellite signal, so I won't be able to watch Bill Maher tonight like I have looked forward to doing all week long. We are almost out of saved TiVo shows - one can only watch so many back-episodes of Smallville in one evening.

Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Hwaet!

School days, school days, dear little golden rule days...

Fall semester 2004 started yesterday. I'm taking two classes - British Literature I and II. Yes, you CAN take them concurrently; they do not build on one another, they cover different time periods. Anywho, Brit Lit I introduced me to Instructor Allan Hunter. A quick Google search found this. Sweet. Instructor Al (he does not have a PhD. and is therefore not a Dr. or a Prof.) is quite the comedian. He informed the class that he has "Hwaet" tatooed on his person - "Hwaet" being the first word in Beowulf, which is our first reading assignment. He also informed us that his is a self proclaimed "nerd" and has a cat named Grendel. There is a car parked on campus with the license plate GRENDEL... Same person?

I have a familiar professor (yes, Prof.) for Brit Lit II, since I took a class with her last semester. Lucky for me, we are reading one of the same books for this class. Yippie!

Thursday, August 19, 2004

Dear Miss Woodhouse, why are you so Clueless?

Finished Emma this afternoon. I had never read it, but I have seen the movie Clueless enough times to know that it was obviously based on Emma. Overall, I think it was very well structured and the story was good enough, but I did not enjoy it nearly as much as Sense and Sensibility or Pride and Prejudice.

I just got off of IM with my seeester. She graduated HS this year and is moving into a dorm in a week. She has never been away from home and is quite the princess, so this will be interesting. She is already friends with her roommate, so that won't be a problem. I am so excited and nervous for her. Since I work at a university, I know how big and confusing they can be. I also know how different a university cirriculum is from HS. She is going to love it, though.

Tuesday, August 17, 2004

The truth about Frankenstein

I just finished reading Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein (1818 edition) and I must admit that I was not prepared for such a moving, gut-wrenching character as that of the monster. My previous ideas of a Frankenstein monster were formed by Boris Karloff, Mel Brooks, Herman Munster and breakfast cereal. How is it possible that all of these incarnations could represent the truth so sparingly? Yes, he was a monster, but in appearance only - until provoked by profound loneliness and the realization that his only salvation lay in the hand of his creator – the creator who despised his creation. Of all of the characters in the novel, the monster (who is never named) is the most sympathetic, the most articulate, the most conflicted, and the most human. From the initial image of the monster sledding alone in the Artic, to the monster's description of his death pyre at the end, this novel was gripping, surprising, and endearing.

Tuesday, August 10, 2004

I heart Ignatius J. Reilly

I finished A Confederacy of Dunces over the weekend. Fantastic book. No, that isn't a strong enough word. Fucking fantastic book. That's better. What a remarkable character Toole has created in Ignatius - rude, socially inept, bloated, loud, pompus - he should not be remotely likable. But he is endearing and funny and brilliant. Sure he treats he momma bad, but she raised him, she made him what he is, so I see Ignatius and Irene as needing each other - that is, until Irene finds someone better and Ignatius must face his demons (in the form of a Myrna minx).

I can see why Hollywood is desperate to turn this book into a movie, but I don't see how - Ignatius is such a character - so real, so alive, so big and over-the-top - there is no actor alive today that could do him justice. There was talk of Will Ferrell, but unless he gaines a hundred or so pounds, there is no way he could fill that hot-dog smock.

Friday, August 6, 2004

I know I should participate in our political process…

...but I don't feel like fighting the crowd. John Kerry and his Believe in America tour is making a stop in my fair swing city this evening. He has been here all day, actually, but the public rally will be tonight at our Union Station. I love John Kerry and his wife, and know I will be sorry if I do not attend, but I would rather eat sushi and go to the bookstore than fight for parking and stand shoulder to shoulder in a bouncing throng for a couple of hours.

I will involve myself in our political process by encouraging everyone I know to register to vote, get out there on Election Day, and end Dubya's reign of terra!

On a totally different topic, my beloved Briney has announced today that it will only be open to subscribers effective in a couple of weeks. Now, I do not mind paying $2.45 a month for a subscription to The Atlantic Monthly in order to participate in one of the best forums on the interbunny, but I am seriously bummed that many of the posters I know and love will be jumping ship for cheaper (free) waters.

This is a sad, sad day.