Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from August, 2012

Samantha Bee is -- oh good Lord, I was going to say she's the bee's knees

According to my Democrat friends, the Republicans basically drunkenly vomited all over themselves at last night's convention. I suspect they are somewhat biased. I wouldn't know, because I was watching Revenge on Hulu (it's based on LITERATURE, you guys).
This'll be a fun next couple months.

Then in the midst of convention drama, I saw people linking to Samantha Bee's Daily Show report, which is brilliant/hilarious and I think I've watched it five times so far:


The Daily Show with Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10cRNC 2012 - The Road to Jeb Bush 2016 - The Republican Platformwww.thedailyshow.comDaily Show Full EpisodesPolitical Humor & Satire BlogThe Daily Show on Facebook


And I remembered that I read her book I Know I Am, But What Are You? last year, and it was my totes favorite, but then I forgot about it. I HAVE FORGOTTEN NO LONGER. You guys, she's wearing a bee costume on the cover. Read it. It is hilarious. And wonderful. And I think I liked it better th…

Harry Potter and the Possibility of Lengthy Arguments Over Whether Sirius Sucks or Not (He Does)

Things have been discussed. Declarations have been made. Insights have been shared. And what it boils down to is -- Harry Potter readalong?



Now some of you will say, "Isn't there already a Harry Potter readalong happening?" And yes. Yes there is. And you can totes join that if you want. 

But because some of us don't want to ruin this already-happening readalong with our irreverent gifs and lack of taking most anything seriously (although if anyone mocks Luna they will OF COURSE be tossed out on their ass in a very serious fashion indeed), it was thought -- different readalong? Different readalong. But in January. Until maybe Mayish? So people can read other things and still write hilarious posts of spoilerness.
1) Let me know if there is interest.

2) Would you all be down with breaking the books up over five months?

3) Do you have any different ideas?

4) My brother kicks ass.*



*note: "brother" is a catch-all term, for I have three brothers, and use the term indisc…

The Moonstone: All Things Must End. Exchange Your Friendship Bracelets Now.

Sigh. Another month over, another readalong finished. But LET US NOT BE DOWNHEARTED. For Laura at Devouring Texts is going to host one for Grapes of Wrath in October, and all will be magical. Also sad. Very, very sad. Because Grapes of Wrath. But there will be gifs, and that's what really matters.
First off. Wilkie.

We would like to express our undying love and passion, but you're dead (like so many people in this book — and by the way, wtf, sir) and so all we can do is tell others of your mighty deeds. And by mighty deeds, I mean giving us the character of Gooseberry, aka OCTAVIUS GUY.

I want a spinoff called The Further Adventures of Sergeant Cuff and Octavius Guy. And then there'll be ANOTHER spinoff when Cuff gets too old called Sherlock & Octavius where they do a crossover and solve crimes together like a detective Odd Couple. I am ALREADY SO EXCITED ABOUT THIS and it doesn't exist.
Also, I am genuinely disappointed in Wilkie for not continuing the character of Go…

Eleanor & Park: Young Love At Its Least Annoying

Remember when everyone read Attachments and they were all "This is ADORABLE and hilarious and you should read it"? Ok, well I said that. And so did some other people I like.

Did you know that if you search 'eleanor park' on google image, the first thing that comes up is this?



But you will also come across the UK cover of Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell.


I admit to being hesitant about reading this, because I loved Attachments SO much, and I knew this was about teenagers, and ew, teenagers. Also I've been getting sick of the Nick & Norah, Fault in Our Stars snarky witty John Green teenager vibe, and for all I knew, this just continued that.

BE NOT AFRAID, LITTLE SQUIRRELS. For I could not put it down. Well, I mean, I did at work and when I was singing and while looking at my brother's new baby, but ASIDE from that. Kept on reading.

So there's Park, and he's a teenager and there's Eleanor and SHE'S a teenager, and unsurprisingly they're …

Poets: Making Words Rhyme and Not Rhyme for a While Now

Do you all realize the new series of Doctor Who is starting in NINE DAYS? I make no promises about the state of my mind grapes at that time. Fortunately it airs on a Saturday and I basically never update on the weekend, but OH THE EXCITEMENT. Especially since the new companion, Jenna Chipmunk Face, (SPOILERS AHEAD, ME HEARTIES) is wearing a LOT of Victorian clothes in set pictures, and this is obviously the bestest.
My friend with cable is going to be out of town, so it's going to be me. And my laptop. And a livestream of the BBC at like 2 o'clock in the afternoon. Like FANCY people do.
Now. Poetry. Do we like it.
I have to say, I have something of a prejudice against poetry, and it's probably got a lot to do with not wanting to look like a posing prancing idiot who thinks they just FEEL very intensely. But focusing on 19th c. British lit as I did, College made me take some Romantic lit courses, and all those bastards did was write poetry.
BUT SOME OF IT IS VERY GOOD. Good to …

The Moonstone: It Progresses

You all. Cover your eyes and ears if you do not wish The Moonstone to be ruined for you. Or, as River Song so succinctly puts it:

DUDES WEAR NIGHTGOWNS WHAT
I forgot this. No, you know what -- dudes wear nightSHIRTS. DAMN YOU WILKIE. This is like that story about the kid who gets into a car crash with his dad and the dad dies but the kid's taken to the hospital and the doctor looks at him and says "I can't operate on him; he's my son," and you're like "Whaaaaa?" and then it's like "'CAUSE THE DOCTOR'S A LADY -- BOOM! SEXISM EXPOSED."
Wilkie's all, oh, you thought you knew what was going on?

Ok, but what happened here? We leave Miss Clack (boooo) and her talk of things like "the glorious prospect of interference," and we move to Mr. Bruff, who seems nice if not totally on top of things (mainly because he loves napping with his many pug dogs, and dude, who wouldn't?), and Bruff is kind of paternal in a good way, wh…

You Kids Get Off My Lawn-Type Thoughts on Authors. Etc.

All right. I said I'd blog about something bookish today. And I will, despite being up til midnight reading Who's the Boss fanfiction. I have been informed (by myself) that I am somewhat surly today. With that in mind, here're some authors I dislike for, in some cases, no good reason:

1. Hemingway.  Have I read anything of his? Nooooo. Do I believe I have a basic idea of his writing? Yeeees. Men and boats and dogs and drinking and brooding and maybe some fishing. Wow. Way to write about nothing that interests me. Except maybe dogs. But not when it's the dude's relationship with his dog and how he doesn't have any human friends because He Is Alone. I don't care about that. Stop it.

2. Audrey Niffenegger. Boooooo if only because I have to look up her name every time I'm writing it. Also Time Traveler's Wife sucks. If I could unread that book, I totally would. I could've read anything. Like R.L. Stine. But no, I read that. Ew.

3. Samuel Richardson.  R…

Nerd Conventions + Disastrous Things

So I went to a Stargate convention this weekend. My third Stargate convention. And look. I get it. Stargate isn't a very good show. I haven't even watched it in like four years. But Torri Higginson was going to be at the convention, and she played Elizabeth Weir on Stargate Atlantis, and Elizabeth Weir and John Sheppard's eternal-but-unacknowledged-by-the-writers love was my jam senior year of college. So seeing Torri like two feet away from me gave me FEELS, people.

Jewel Staite, aka Kaylee from Firefly, was also there. Which pleased my friend Hannah greatly (oh, I didn't go to that shit alone -- I have some dignity).

I also finished the Titanic miniseries, which is available at a Netflix Instant near you, and is written by Downton Abbey man Julian Fellowes, lover of Rich People Getting a Happy Ending and Poor People Snuffing It. *glares*

I watched it because the new Doctor Who companion's in it, and I wanted to see if I like her. And I do. Also she shall no longer b…

Nobody expects the 3 a.m. book blog update!

I was a proud woman yesterday and in the days before. Perhaps too proud. I scorned all mention of Grey's Anatomy. "HAH!" scoffed I. "That show is for the plebeian masses who thrive off scandalous sexual antics in a medical setting and know not the majesty of truly well-written television."
And then came this past eve, when I have stayed up until 3 a.m. watching the entire Callie/Arizona arc on YouTube, and now I can scorn no longer. Gone — gone is my scorn! Gone the way of the stones that fell from the hands of Jesus' followers and were left abandoned in the street or wherever they'd stone people until they were repurposed for some other stonely activity! Be not proud and scornful, Ye Internet, for the same may befall you.
And now, some bookish thoughts.
I have picked up A Visit from the Goon Squad. It seems MOST excellently written indeed. Perhaps not Pulitzer material, but in its defense, I have read about five pages, and I'm assuming the Pulitzer co…

"Hey, want to burn a couple of vacation days sleeping on the ground outside?"

My friend Doug (I'm sure you all remember Doug) is going camping this weekend, which made me realize that, along with a yearning to suddenly travel back in time to 1890 and hug everyone with leg-of-mutton sleeves, I harbor the delusion that camping would be really, really fun. This is the same sort of feeling that gets me excited during Chicago winters when I have to put on every piece of wintergear I own. "IT'S JUST ME AND YOU NOW, ELEMENTS."

This is a big reason I find certain cowboy novels attractive -- campfires! bedrolls! wide expanses! hats with brims! long rides ahead of us!

Of course, then I neatly leave out the threat of snakes/scorpions/kangaroo rats, but it's not like I'm going to be magically placed in The Sisters Brothers, so whatever.

Meanwhile:


I'm actually looking for other silent Western cowboyish novels. True Grit and Sisters Brothers were oh-so-similar in tone, and it's a tone I super-like. "We shall not use contractions! And th…

I just saw Wednesday referred to as 'Winsday' for the first time. POSITIVITY.

You know that point of the day where you're just like:


Yeah. So. Wednesday. Other than the post today in honor of FRABJOUS MOONSTONE DAY, I updated less in the past few days than my normal, manically writing self is accustomed. So WHAT'S UP. Well. I met the lovely and awesome Rainbow Rowell on Saturday, who was in downtown Chicago. Nerd terms were explained (TO me, not by me -- I was astonished), hangover bananas were eaten (they work, people), Attachments was briefly discussed (WHY HAVEN'T YOU ALL READ IT). Excellent times.
What else? Author John Green was at LeakyCon (Harry Potter convention) and he was CONSTANTLY attended by a gathering of teenage lady devotees. He basically looks like a gawky nerd, which he seems to own, so more power to him. I feel like I'm the only person on the planet who didn't cry during The Fault in Our Stars, but at least part of that is because I finished it while eating french fries at Epic Burger. No one can be sad when there're fre…

The Moonstone, Part Two: The Eminently Quotable Miss Clack

Wilkie, please always use irritable relations of the main characters as narrators.

You've all forgotten Mr Betteredge already, haven't you? *glares accusingly* HOW COULD YOU FORGET HIM WHEN THIS HAPPENED:
She turned to me, and gave me her hand. I kissed it in silence.
I had a mini freak out when I read that. Because I love them. And their sekrit love that is communicated through her giving him orders to do things like make sure the horses are ready by six o'clock and him being like "It shall be done, my lady," which is Betteredge code for "As you wish" which is Princess Bride code for I LOVE YOU NOW ROLL DOWN A HILLSIDE WITH ME AND BATTLE SWAMP-RATS. I would so read that book. The Romantic Adventures of Lady Verinder & Betteredge.
Now. HOW OLD IS EVERYONE IN THIS BOOK?
Betteredge is in his 70s, right? And Rachel's like 20? So WHAT OF LADY VERINDER AND MISS CLACK? I'm SO confused. Because I thought L.V. and Betteredge were similar ages, but appare…

A synonym for 'Neanderthal' is 'boorish,' which just isn't very nice

So this article came out, which isn't really groundbreaking at all, but it happens to have been published the day after I watched part of the NOVA special "Becoming Human," so it's been on my brain anyway.

I was checking out a book a while ago called Cro-Magnon: How the Ice Age Gave Birth to the First Modern Humans, and it was all "Oh dude, our ancestors probably didn't even LOOK at Neanderthals. No way. 'Cause they would've been like, RIDICULOUSLY ugly."

This book was published in 2010. And what came out this year? DNA Shows Humans Found Non-Humans Irresistible

That's right. Your lady ancestor, at some point, sidled up to a Neanderthal gentleman and said "Hey. How's it goin'?


Because all non-Africans ('cause the Africans stayed put instead of traipsing around becoming the Don Juans of prehistoric Europe) have 1-4% Neanderthal DNA. So the above scenario DEFINITELY happened. Which is disheartening NOT because of my huge Neanderth…

If I Might Quote Tumblr

For those of you not reading The Moonstone (sigh) and who don't like readalong posts (SIGH), this delightful tumblr post happened in my way this morning:


I just love thar Tumblr’s problem with 50 Shades of Grey isn’t “my goodness, it’s so pornographic!” but instead “oh my god this is the worst written porn I’ve ever read am I allowed to send this author some choice livejournal entries so she can improve her style”#We are the largest gathering of literary pornography snobs
Accuratest of the accurate. Because Tumblrkids were raised on fanfic. They know what's good, damnit. (Fifty Shades isn't good, even for what it is)And for those who didn't want that (WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO PLEASE YOU PEOPLE), here's an emu and a kangaroo in the middle of a fight:

The Moonstone: Love, Music and Salad (and AWESOMENESS)

You guys. What if it were Mr. Franklin ALL ALONG.
WHAT is happening with Rosanna and him. Fingersmith is influencing me in untoward ways here. Let's all read some Sarah Waters after this. (fine. I'LL read some Sarah Waters after this)
And so begins The Moonstone! From what I could tell, pretty much everyone's had a similar reaction to the beginning, which is along the lines of "WHAT OMG THIS IS THE BEST. WILKIE WHY ARE YOU DEAD I WANT TO KISS YOUR OBSCENELY LARGE FOREHEAD WHAT'S UP WITH THAT WERE YOU DROPPED AS A BABY YOU KNOW WHAT IT DOESN'T MATTER BECAUSE IT HAS RESULTED IN AMAZINGNESS."
Tika from Reading the Bricks kindly scanned in Wilkie's preface, because she is awesome, so it is here, here, and here.
I like to think Wilkie came up with the idea for this book in a tavern. Like, he and his bros were chatting and he was like "Oh yeah, there was a diamond or something that was cursed, right? Hey, what if I put the cursed diamond in an English coun…

Top Ten Tuesday Is SUPER-AWESOME When You Think About It (or when you don't)

Are you KIDDING? I get to link to ten posts that people probably won't read, but you should, for I shall endeavor to find hilarious ones? And I'm gonna do like six, because otherwise it's OVERWHELMING WITH THE LINKS.



Well, this is all terrifically exciting. Top Six Posts That Show the Parts of Me I Have Deemed Fit for the Internet:



1. The Brontes -- What's Up With Them? - Ah, my very first post. This is the one where I compare the Brontes to sea turtles.

2. In Which I Speak of Austenian Things - Back before I noticed everyone was labeling posts 'In which,' etc etc, I did that for a bit. Here tea sets are compared to iPhones. For I like comparing things.


3. The Book of Deuteronomy Always Gets That Song from 'Cats' Stuck in My Head - Bibley things.

4. Fanfiction and Why It Doesn't Suck - FANFICTION IS AMAZING

5. Dickens and My Kind of Overblown Prejudice Against Him - Stupid Dickens.

6. The Scarlet Pimpernel Makes Me Ashamed of the Past - It does.

Six isn'…

There are no fun songs about Mondays

Damn, you guys. I have a Who's the Boss Monday hangover. WHO'S THE BOSS. Because my evil friend Skye said "Hey, come over Sunday night; we'll watch Who's the Boss." Because that's the kind of thing my friends do. "Can you summarize Tony and Angela's relationship in three and a half hours?" I asked. "Yes, I can," she said. EXCEPT I STAYED FOR FIVE BECAUSE TONY AND ANGELA HAVE A LOVE THAT WILL NEVER DIE.
I'd never seen that show before. Just saying. But there were some pretty strong '80s television feelings happening in Lakeview last night.


Shipping things is my JAM, people. I talk about books, but they're just another way of finding things to ship. If you don't know what shipping is, 1) How are you internetting? 2) Are we friends, because I'm pretty sure all my internet friends are fangirls. 3) Edumacate yourself.

I went to the library Saturday, braving Lollapalooza teens who all decided that NOW was the time to dre…

Ewoks, Wilkie Collins & Race Relations, and Dinosaurs on a SPACESHIP

If you guys aren't taking part in The Moonstone readalong, I URGE YOU to change your mind, because it's already like a zillion kinds of fun and we haven't even started the book.
Well. I mean, I have. And some other people. And omg it is AWESOME. Y'know how you read Dickens, and you're like "Wow, women were really boring in this century"? TURNS OUT THEY WEREN'T -- HE JUST WROTE THEM THAT WAY.
Damnit, Charles, we've discussed this. And someone mentioned that while Wilkie was kind of like "Maybe we SHOULDN'T go into India and take all their stuff and kill all their people," Dickens was like "YOU DON'T KNOW WHAT YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT" and huffed off. I hope that's followed up on in more detail next week, Whoever Wrote About That (I visited a lot of blogs yesterday).
By the way, WHAT HAS A NEW TRAILER OUT TODAY? Oh right, that'd be Doctor Who, the Best Show of Any Show in the History of Shows.



Let's not talk abou…

The Moonstone: It. Begins.

CAN YOU FEEL THE EXCITEMENT?
Another Wilkie readalong has begun. Ah, hearken back to the days of yore (April), those of you who participated in the Woman in White readalong, and think on how little we knew. HOW PITIABLY LITTLE. And now we return, a little older, a little more imbued with the respect for Wilkie that he deserves. And with some new people joining us! Oh, how thrilling.


To those of you who haven't done this before, link your post up in the Linky (I know, it's complicated) and try to visit at least some of the readalong participants, because WITHOUT DISCUSSION, THERE IS NO READALONG.
Like an idiot, I didn't assign the prologue. It's like four pages. And AWESOME. You know that guy who narrates the Mummy movies? Ardeth? The member of the Medjai? And he's all mysterious and full of gravitas? That's how I hear the prologue. It's The Mummy Returns of the 19th century. Also — ALSO he uses a device that was used in things like The Fifth Element and OMG I …