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Archive for April, 2012

My Precious

I don’t wear a lot of jewely as a rule, but I do have a few favorite pieces I’d like to show you.Image

 

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amber necklace (fake? It’s from my grandma and she can be kind of cheap sometimes…but always sweet!) 🙂 She grew up in Estonia where they have a lot of amber, apparently, but not so much money.

My grandmother is really an inspiration for me, not just because of her audacious choices in lipstick colors at the impressive age of 86. She saw a lot of hard times, especially during WWII, when she had to leave her Estonian home for Germany. While she took the train, her mother had decided to go by ship. This ship was the Wilhelm Gustloff, often eclipsed by the Titanic’s unrightful claim to the biggest ship wreck desaster of all times. The Gustloff was worse, but it’s a lot touchier as a subject because it was torpedoed by the Russians and was full of fugitives.. In the Russians’ defence, I could add that the Gustloff had formerly been a warship and was used to transport fugitives only later. Well, as I said, it’s a touchy subject and I am not really an expert, so I’ll just leave it at that. After working hard all her life, Grandma is enjoying some well deserved good times now in the States.

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Cloudscapes

Room for daydreams.

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Hi y’all,

Summer has arrived! Thanks to some hot winds from North Africa, t-shirt time has finally arrived at my neck of the woods. I enjoyed the sunshine with a friend out in the park, as did the rest of the city, judging by the commotion.

I have this great park pretty much right outside my front door. It was landscaped for a gardening exposition a couple years ago. It’s pretty nice, and the best part about it is the lake right in the middle. I take a splash there when it gets really hot, and try not to think of the HUGE carp I have often seen wallowing near the surface. I’ll try to catch them on film one of these days, they’re bound to show their moustaches soon if the weather stays like this.ImageImageImage

I met this cute fella wanderin around. He was sniffing other dogs’ poo, I was trying not to step in it.

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This cutie is among those feathered friends responsible for poor water quality towards the end of a hot summer. Because of all the people feeding ducks, there are too many ducks and duck feces for my small lake. So DON’T ever feed ducks! You’re usually not doing them or their ecosystem a favor.

 

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Lots of young people enjoying their barbecues. Mostly students from the dorm near the lake, or, as Cartman would put it, da** hippies!

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80s music

80s music can be so cool! I’m listening to this right now: Talking heads: “This must be the the place”.

You can listen to it here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TTPqPZzH-LA&feature=share

Heading out for some wine and talk to end the evening. Life can be very good 🙂

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Joseph Andrews

Book cover for the Dover Thrift edition.

 

This will be my first book review. I am writing these partly for fun, and partly to avoid forgetting the main outlines of my reads.

Joseph Andrews by Henry Fielding might seem like a weird book to start with, because it’s not the most obvious fun pick. The thing is, it was A LOT of fun to read, even though it was an assignment. Fielding is hilarious as a writer. The whole book is kind of a sequel to his parody of Richardson’s Pamela,or Virtue Rewarded  (icky title…), which he called Shamela in an amazing streak of imagination.

Joseph Andrews, our hero, is not only a h-o-t hunk, he is also incredibly virtuous. He works as a manservant for Lord and Lady Booby. His looks attract some unwanted attention. First, the lady who waits on Lady Booby and goes by the flattering name of Slipslop tries to get him into bed in order to suffocate him with her loosely hanging breasts, but he valiantly resists. Unfortunately, Lady Booby cannot resist Joseph’s charms either after she has lost her husband. She lures him to her bed and tries to seduce him by almost showing her boobies – hence the name? Joseph manages to remain pure and save his chastity. Unfortunately, the lady is offended by his indifference and promptly discharges him.

Joseph now begins his journey to see his sweetheart Fanny (incidentally the most handsome creature any man ever laid eyes on). His distracted friend and mentor Parson Adams accompanies him. They meet a lot of people and live through various adventures on the road. They get shammed, robbed, and almost murdered and sent to prison. The book criticizes superficiality, wickedness, and corruption in people, but in a way that is always funny and hardly ever cynical. I also love the way the book mocks itself constantly. Some great examples are Fielding’s titles for some of the chapters: “VIII: Which some readers will think too short and others too long”, “VII. A scene of roasting, very nicely adapted to the present taste and times”, “IX. Containing as surprising and bloody adventures as can be found in this or perhaps any other authentic history.”

Enough said, it was a delightful read. I have to admit I only skimmed some of Paron Adam’s mock sermons, but found it enjoyable and very amusing on the whole. As a classic, it’s available in some low-price editions, like the Dover Thrift Editions.

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Just write!

I am guilty of the severe crime of procrastination. It runs in the family, and lately, it seems I have developed the most severe case. As a university student, I’ve come to know a lot of fellow students – including little old me- who put off studying or writing papers for as long as possible. I had never really seen it as much of a problem because I always managed to meet the deadline and get the grades I had vied for.

But lately, with my 9th semester approaching, I’ve found it hard to get anything done at all besides the dishes (and I’ve even avoided those on occasion) . I guess studying for such a long period of time can take its toll on your motivation.  Hell, it’s been 5 years. What bothers me much more is that I’ve been avoiding writing. I used to love to write in high school.  I feel like all those academic papers with referencing and footnotes have sucked the juice out of my writing voice.

Obviously, I have decided to combat this development and face my greatest fear: not finding anything to write about. I am going to make it easy for myself and consider even the most trifling trifle worth my humble while. It’s also an excellent way to put off two term papers that are waiting for me, so this kind of work is exactly in my vein :).

Just to demonstrate how serious I am about blogging and self-amendment, I am going to buy a digital camera this week- no, wait, tomorrow!- because personally, I hate reading blogs with no pictures after a long day spent over dry and  AWFULLY written secondary literature (give or take a few exceptions). As a matter of fact, it’s really amazing how much bad writing we are flooded with every day.  I’m not just referring to quality here,  a lot of people just don’t seem to love or like language at all. Like somebody riding a horse to its death before he or she arrives at their destination- which is communication.

Speaking of communication, I will share some of my favorite procrastination strategies:

-TV documentaries on cute wittle animals (and let me note here that this is not a prioritized list)

-Sex and the City…I’m actually more of a Gilmore Gal, but I have watched that series too often and have not found anything similarly awesome…recommendations welcome!!

-cleaning up

-calling friends to complain about the stuff I don’t wanna do

-sleeping

-doing some artsy-craftsy stuff like knitting, sewing, gluing together wacky collages to mail to friends

-reading blog entries and as of now, writing them 🙂

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