Thursday, May 24, 2012

We Are Everywhere

"You can't wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club." - Jack London

I've read a lot of things in various places in the wonderful wide world of the Internet about how history curricula  often overlook LGBT(and all the other letters) history entirely and how that's an enormous problem and so on, so I was pleased when the video we watched in class today actually mentioned the first big protests on the issue back in the 70s.

But I had to laugh when the crowd was shown carrying enormous signs reading "WE ARE EVERYWHERE."

If someone's repulsed by a group of people but they can't always determine whether or not someone belongs to that group on sight...the best thing to do probably isn't to remind them that they are likely surrounded on all sides. Just saying.

I get what they're trying to do--"we're a large minority and you probably (know/are friends with/related to) a lot of us and you should think about that before you say/think offensive things"-- but...I don't know, I feel like I would just be more paranoid and literally homophobic than I was before if I was one of those people.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

To Kill a Mockingbird, My English Teacher, and Terry Pratchett

“Give a man a fire and he's warm for a day, but set fire to him and he's warm for the rest of his life.” ― Terry Pratchett

My English teacher has a lot of quirks when it comes to books (which is probably in the job description, but bear with me). For instance, she cannot go into a book store without buying a copy of To Kill a Mockingbird, and then giving it to either a student or a random person she thinks should have it. She worships that book, and would marry Atticus in a heartbeat if she was single and had the opportunity.

She also never keeps novels. She reads them, sure, but after she's finished, she gives them away.

I was thinking about that today, and how I own about 300 books, most of which are novels. Why am I hanging onto them, when almost everything I read is from the library or my book club?

Some of them I just haven't read yet.
Some of them are gifts from my grandma, and you can't really just give away a book if my grandma gives it to you. She's just that kind of person.
Some of them are ARCs, so it's harder to give them away.
Some of them are things me/my sisters have/will need for school.
Some of them I want to reread at some point, or save for my eventual children.
Some of them I just need to own. Need. My English teacher is not a fan of Harry Potter (and in telling us this she referred to it as science fiction-- I about exploded), so she apparently does not run into this problem. I am mentally incapable of giving away my copies.

And then there are the rest--about 30--which I took to the used book store today. I felt immensely satisfied.

...And then I promptly spent all of the resulting store credit (plus some) on a copy of every Terry Pratchett book they had.

Funny thing: I'm looking at Goodreads' list of Terry Pratchett quotes (because I haven't actually read anything by him yet-- he's just next on the list), and I found this:
“If you have enough book space, I don't want to talk to you.” ― Terry Pratchett

Monday, May 7, 2012

Music 2012

“Still though, I think if you're not self-obsessed, you're probably boring.” ― Dave Eggers

Dave Eggers, you make me feel so validated. Thanks to aliceling (whose blog is amazing and you should go read) for the quote

It's been a year since my last music post, so I thought I'd give you all a new look at things. The top 10 in my iTunes isn't terribly accurate, since most of that is what I was listening to on repeat while writing over the summer, so I'm just going to link you to some of the things I love a lot right now.

"The Cave" by Mumford and Sons is amazing to the point that it is on mix CDs in my and two of my best friends' cars and we sing it whenever we go places together.

The Mountain Goats, just in general. I saw them in concert a few weeks ago and it was awesome. "Heretic Pride" is one of my favorites but "No Children" (if you're into upbeat songs about miserable people) and "This Year" are also fantastic.

"We Looked Like Giants" and "Soul Meets Body" by Death Cab for Cutie, plus others. Their concert last summer was also awesome.

"The Engine Driver" and "The Rake's Song" (if you're into upbeat songs about child murderers) by the Decemberists. I heard their concert last spring was awesome.

"Modern Love" by Matt Nathanson (who my sister refers to as "Sexy Beard Man") is a song my youngest sister and I sing at obnoxious volumes when I'm driving her to get ice cream. I also sing it at obnoxious volumes when I'm driving by myself. (Actually, I sing a lot of things at obnoxious volumes when I'm driving by myself.)

Aaaaand just so this is a proper top-ish 10, we'll throw in "In the Aeroplane Over the Sea" by Neutral Milk Hotel-- something else that is in my car. And played with my friend on her guitars which was kind of amazing.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

In Which Prom Is A Thing I Talk About

You read books or watch movies or whatever and they make prom out to be this massive thing that's the pinnacle of your high school career and you look forward to it for weeks and you go to the spa and get a full-body wax because it's prom also you intend to have sex with your boyfriend so a visit to the spa is apparently necessary. Combine with stress, anxiety, and alcohol. Stir.

Or at least I've read books like that.

I am going to prom this weekend. It's nowhere near the pinnacle of my high school career, I was looking forward to this week more for my biweekly writing group than I was for prom, my "date" is my best friend so as much as I like her if any sex is had I've definitely wound up in the Twilight Zone, What is this "spa" you speak of?

Really. The extent of some prom hype is ridiculous. Yeah, I'm excited for it, and yeah, I'm sure it'll be fun,'s not the defining moment of my life, or anywhere close to it. I'm glad I'm going, wouldn't be the end of the world if I wasn't, you know? It's just a dance, plus dinner. And I have to wear heels.

Quite honestly as incredibly nerdy as it sounds the thing I've done that's come as close to what prom is "supposed" to be is the State debate championship.

Dressed up? Check.
Excited for weeks beforehand? Check.
Lots of money spent? Check.
Fantastic time with friends? Check * 100.
"Highlight" of high school experiences so far? Check.
Slept in a hotel with someone I love? Check.
Loads of pictures all over Facebook? Check.

I've got this down, man.

So just for kicks, tell me your prom stories, guys. I want to hear them. Or at least...I want to hear the stories of the few of you who are actually old enough to have been to a prom. Because I think about a third of you I'll be seeing Saturday night. :)

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Better Than Obama (or at least snarkier)

Earlier tonight, President Obama gave an address from Afghanistan.

I only watched about half of it and have absolutely nothing to say on that topic.

I only watched about half of it because the first "real" post on Corrected Proofs had just gone up, and it was far, far more entertaining so I read that instead. I am a terrible American. Truly I am.

Corrected Proofs is a project two of my friends and I have started, and...well, I'll just let you read the About page over there. My first post is scheduled for tomorrow, but the one that's up now is genuinely hilarious--and that's an honest recommendation (not just shameless promotion of my friend/blog).

Go watch us be bitter and bask in our own cleverness.

Oh, and you know, talk about what makes high quality literature and the fact that a lot of books completely fail at achieving that standing. Something like that.