Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Out With the Old

There is something cleansing about trading my old books. I've been trucking some of these books around the country for years. Over those years my tastes have changed. Also, my collection has quickly outgrown any residence I might be able to afford these days. It's time to hone my reading list, and start some of those literate tomes I've been putting off until my retirement.

The rain is continuous lately, so that give me the impetus to go through all my boxes in the garage. If I'm disciplined this week I may actually finish reading Portnoy's Complaint. Other than that it's pretty much business as usual this week. At work we are hoping that sales will continue to increase as the Big Consumerist Holiday nears.

Time to grab a little lunch before braving the elements.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Why Oh Why?

Why have I been so remiss when it comes to blogging? My goal was to at least surpass the number of posts last year by a few, a mere few, but if I don't get on the ball I may actually fall short of my goal. I should have been posting pictures of our beautiful snowfall last week, but I need to actually purchase a new photo card for my camera. Even though I don't buy into the whole Merry Consumerist season, I still have the feeling of being busy, because I work in retail. Customer service is the most thankless job there is when it comes to the holiday season.

Other than being lazy when it comes to blogging, I have been slowly making my way through Philip Roth's Portnoy's Complaint. It's an extremely well written book, but ultimately it's still a 274 page rant to Alex Portnoy's psycho-analyst. Brilliant writing or not, I can only read someones rant for so long. Portnoy's complaints about his Jewish parents starts to get repetitive after a while. I think I may have to burn through a mystery/thriller after finishing this novel.

I am still in love, even though the forces of society sometimes make me wonder about the sanity of the rest of the globe. I feel quite happy that I have managed to find someone who is at least as sane as I am (which may not be saying much.) If only we could be snowed in for the rest of the winter, to read and revel in our couple-ship. Let the rest of the world bustle about in some false sense of importance. We know that they are just running in circles.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Stuck in the Middle

It's Wednesday. The middle of the work week. "Hump Day" to some, drudgery to others. The rain is steadily dropping to the absorbent earth today. I'm about to eat yet again at the bagel shop. It's an eating habit that I cannot seem to shake yet, but like any other repetitive eating habit, it will fade with time. I finished reading Jar City, an "Icelandic thriller," a few days ago, but I haven't been able to commit to a new book yet. I've been bring a few with me to work, including Portnoy's Complaint by Philip Roth, and Earth Abides by George R. Stewart. I'm not sure what fictional world I want to dive into.

Last night I watched the recent film adaptation of Jim Thompson's The Killer Inside of Me, starring Casey Affleck, Kate Hudson, and the multi-talented Jessica Alba. If you are not familiar with the story, it's about a psychopathic cop, who has a penchant for sadistic sex. The film was publicity worthy for the film beating that the Jessica Alba character is subject to. Needless to say, the film was not easy to watch. I think part of the success of Jim Thompson's novels is the voice, the narration, but the interior mind of a psychopath is difficult to film, especially without making the audience sick. The dark humor of Thompson's novels are lost when the depravity of the characters is actually seen on film.

Now I venture forth into the gray rain of the Pacific Northwest. There is an author event tonight at the bookstore, and I have already mentally committed to introducing the author, since my co-worker (the fledgling rock star) absolutely "fucking hates" doing introductions.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Monday Sweet Monday

Monday has the psychological power that it does, because the majority of us start our work week on Monday. Luckily for me, one of my co-workers traded shifts with me today, so I do not have to punch in until 2 pm. That gives me time for lunch, and reading before putting on my customer service face.

I nearly finished Jar City, an Icelandic mystery over the weekend. I'll most likely finish it before turning in tonight. It's a decent thriller, with a fast moving plot, but I miss the lack of characterization that one tends to get in more literate novels. It doesn't help that I just finished reading an excellent novel that also doubled as a fast-paced thriller.

Now I must step into my own Monday, which happens to be overcast at the moment.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Music Video

Thanks to moving my entire compact disc collection over to the house, I now have new music to load into my computer. Last night I enjoyed listening to Annie Lennox's first two albums. Here is a cut from her first solo album: "Diva"

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Time is Up

Tuesday and the deluge is back. We had a sunny respite over the weekend, but the dark damp has returned. A large part of my book collection is now putting its trust in the infallibility of our detached garage, which is probably not going to live up to its expectations. I already spotted a leak directly leaking onto a stack of books. Oh well, material possessions will not follow me into the (imaginary) afterlife.

I think that I'll stop trying to talk myself out of going to the bagel shop once again, especially now that they have started to get my order right. It's also a nice spot to relax before going into work. I'm about halfway through the book Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter and I'd love to just spend this rainy day reading, but I'll have to settle for an hour of reading time in the church parking lot before my shift starts.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Shed a Little Tear

Today all of the liberal (read: sensible) people are a little verklempt. It's sometimes hard to fathom how the working masses consistently vote against their own best interests. They have been duped into thinking that any tax is bad. Our flag-waving, tea-partying citizens must somehow believe that little fairies come out at night and fix the potholes in the road, or that the public school system is staffed by volunteers. (It almost feels that way due to the continued undervaluing of our educators in this country.) On the bright side: Dino Rossi became a three-time loser. What's next for Dino? There are so many options on the horizon. I'm sure he could be a guaranteed loser at most anything if he put his mind to it.

I finished reading Steve E. Landsburg's Big Questions, which ended up irritating more than educating me. It certainly was the wrong book to start reading during my long weekend. I have already started reading Tom Franklin's latest novel, Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter, and it's the kind of book that makes you consider calling in sick to work to finish. I'm already running in the negative in both sick days and vacation time, so that's out of the question for me.

For whatever reason, probably none, I have been listening to a lot of Grateful Dead recently. I've discovered some of their live stuff that has been released over the last decade, some of it dating back to 1967, and I'm quite enjoying it. I was never a Deadhead. In fact, I only saw them live once, (plus I saw Jerry Garcia on tour with his own band.) I watched them sitting next to a die-hard Deadhead, and he was carping the whole time that the previous night's show in Hartford was much better. In the meantime, he's taping the show, and jotting the down the song list. Now that Jerry is dead and gone, I still enjoy listening to his meandering and melodic style of guitar playing.

Even though I am tempted to stay up until four in the morning, watching a movie, I am going to give into good sense and turn in. I still have a few items in storage at my previous residence, such as my bicycle and my collection of movie posters from the 1970s. You know, precious stuff. It would probably be a good idea to clean out my possessions from the old homestead for good. Lucky for me, I am renting a house with a garage, which easily fits all of my unnecessary crap.