Sep. 6th, 2011 12:08 am
Yay! So far this month, I'm at under Y2000 on groceries! I know it's only the 5th, but I made curry tonight, which settles the question of this week's lunches, and I've got spaghetti sauce in the freezer for at least two more meals, and then there are things enough in the fridge and kitchen to last me until next week. So yeah, that means I've been cooking! As I was making the curry, I had a sudden urge to ditch the curry package and freestyle some sort of stir-fry, but then I remembered that I love curry! And full of potatoes, it makes a very easy lunch. I did use yogurt instead of my usual coconut milk, though, and it turned out nice and almost tart.

Sadly, I ate my last box of Kraft Dinner last week. TToTT

At the moment, I've got one of those freaky-looking sheet masks on my face. The package says "Herb Essence Collagen Mask" and it smells like... it smells like... isn't it maddening when you can't pin a name to a smell? Am I the only one that frequently happens to? Anyway, it's not quite mint, not quite anise, not quite flowery, but I KNOW I know this scent. It puts me in mind of being a kid and taking a bath, so I must at some point have had bubble bath that smelled like this, or more likely, bath beads. It smells round. XD;;; According to the ingredient list, it's got lavender, rosemary, oregano and thyme, but it doesn't smell like any of those to me. Well, maybe a tiny bit like lavender, but lavender that's gotten all the spicy kick sucked out of it.

Sometimes, I write down quotes or transcribe amusing things I see, intending to share them with you all later. Seldom do I get around to it, but in the interest of winnowing down my paper pile some more (I'm trying to be good and just spent the last half hour sorting through stuff), here are a few of them.

* * *

A t-shirt I saw on the train at some point, an eclectic list if I ever saw one:

Tick one per line: [very good] [good] [fair] [poor]

beautiful clothes
you and me

* * *

From a children's book on animals I came across at work. Obviously written with someone whose English vocabulary was limited and whose knowledge of the animal kingdom was even more deplorable.

A fox is a kind of wild dog, with a bushy tail. Not a dog.

Horns are the hard, pointed bits on the heads of deer. Horns =/= antlers!

A lizard is an animal with short legs and a long tail. A very vague description indeed.

A reindeer is an animal with very large horns. We went over this...

A starfish is a star-shaped fish. @_@

A tooth is one of the hard white bones in our mouth. DX

[After something about domestic cats looking like big cats,] But leopard, tiger, etc. are just "large animals". *headdesk*

* * *

From Thomas Hardy's Jude the Obscure, a novel so powerful that though I stopped halfway through it and didn't pick it up again for over five years, I remembered the first half vividly and picked up the story as though I'd only put down the book the day before. Here's Sue Bridehead explaining why she doesn't want to marry Jude. Not something I expected to encounter in a 19th century novel, to be sure!

"Well, I don't know. The intention of the contract is good, and right for many, no doubt; but in our case it may defeat its own ends because we are the queer sort of people we are -- folk in whom domestic ties of a forced kind snuff out cordiality and spontaneousness."

Bits & Bobs

Jun. 8th, 2011 10:31 pm
I most likely will never get around to writing about them otherwise, so here are some of the things I got up to recently. Please imagine these brief paragraphs as the elaborately detailed posts I meant for them to be, won't you?

K-Pop Extravaganza!

Last month, Eda got her hot little hands on a pair of tickets to the huge K-pop charity concert to raise funds for earthquake relief. There were a million or so acts and it was pretty much a sausage fest, as Eda described it; apart from two girl groups and IU (who is beautiful and adorable and I can't decide whether I want to do dirty things to her or watch her play with kittens), it was all boy bands. So just imagine us spending the evening bouncing along while mostly interchangeable Korean boys DID NOT RIP THEIR SHIRTS OFF on stage. It was actually a bit disappointing! The only guy who obliged was the one wearing the hideous skin-tight pants that he'd obviously stolen from the WWF. Also notable was that when ToHoShinKi (all two of them! XDDD) came out at the end, the entire Saitama Arena went red as the crowd got out its official penlights. "We're in Mordor! D:" I exclaimed. Best act for me was BEAST, who had lots of energy. And it's trashy dance music, what's not to love? Sadly (?!), "Every night I SHARK" actually did sound like "shock" when heard live. Oh, well. It'll always be shark in my head! ^o^

Moving Eda

Last Saturday, Sarah and I helped Eda move. It was pretty much the reverse of what Jill and I helped her do last year, in that this time she moved from Nippori to Nakano. It took two trips, same as last time, but the weather was gorgeous! We discovered that Pickled Nasu Lady has a buddy, Pickled Daikon Lady, in front of whose house I most rudely parked. Not in front of her door, or anything, but in front of the frosted glass window that wasn't even open! She came out and glared at me, but I ignored her, since she wasn't congratulating me on my superior backing up skills. And later, when we were getting reading to leave, she came and asked us what we were doing -- it was so worth it to hear Eda say, in possibly the bitchiest voice I've ever heard her use, "We're programming the navigation system." We didn't see her on the second run, but Pickled Nasu Lady was sitting by the side of the street, and told us, as we drove by, "There's no exit that way." I suppose my very loud peal of laughter wasn't very polite, but didn't she remember us from last year? XDDD

In between runs we had lunch at Big Boy, because that was the only place we could think of that had parking. I'd never eaten at Big Boy before (I only knew of its existence because of Austin Powers, to be honest), and the menu was pretty much just large chunks of meat, but I am in love with the salad bar! For Y600 you can eat mountains of salad, which I did. Who knew salad could be so filling! And I've done some research and found that there's a branch in Choufu within reasonable biking distance from my place. :D~~~

Game of Thrones

This series is SOOOO GOOOOOOOD! There are only two more episodes left to go for this first season, but that just means I'll be able to marathon them all. Tyrion is still amazing; Arya is great; Jon (and Ghost!) are finally getting to see some action; Tywin is perfect; I'll just stop there, because I'm too tired to go into details. Suffice to say, you should watch this series even if you don't know the books. Watch it!


Kids crack me up. I taught my advanced class today (all kids who either graduated from our preschool or are returnees) and the word "boss" came up. I asked them if they knew what it meant, and who their boss was. They came up with, "Mummy and Daddy. And my teacher." So I asked them if they knew who my boss was. Dead silence. "Your mummy?" one girl tried. "No, it's Ms. Y." I pointed at my boss, who was at her desk on the other side of the room, and the look on their faces was priceless. I guess until that moment, the teachers were all just teachers on the same level. Which makes sense, since we all, my boss included, go by "Ms. FirstName". XDDD

Later on, I was giving them sentences and they had to tell me what kind of verb I'd used. I said, "I believe the moon is made of cheese." Chaos ensued! Well, almost. It was the little kid version of OMGWTFBBQ?!?!?!?, so I had to explain the joke, such as it was. At least they all knew that some kinds of cheese have holes in them.


My brain is starting to hate me, and I've really no idea how much of an improvement over my last score I can reasonably expect, but at least I'm studying daily! I'll do one of the practice tests this weekend to get a rough idea of how badly I'll do. I wish I were kidding. -___-;;; At least I'm motivated now! I've got less than a month to go, but I'm more or less where I'd planned to be in my studying. Ideally, I'd have been going through the grammar book again as well, but I don't have the time. I can skim through it easily enough, as grammar is not usually my weak point.

Lady Gaga

I spent most of Sunday with Hannah, eating caaaaaake and shopping wandering through stores and not buying anything. Except for Lady Gaga's latest CD, which is even dancier than I expected. I quite like it, though I'm a bit surprised by how retro it sounds. Sure, everyone was going on about how "Born This Way" is Madonna remixed, but I hear hints of TLC in it too, and more than a bit of late '80s/early '90s Bon Jovi in some other songs. I'm not sure whether it'll grow more on me or whether I'll grow tired of it after a while, as none of the sounds sound as unique to me as "Bad Romance", "Poker Face" or "Telephone".


To get back to the caaaaaake, we hit up the Sweets Paradise in Shibuya at 11:00, expecting it to be full of gyarus, but it was mostly full of ordinary folks, including a birthday party of 8-year-old girls. I guess 11:00 is too early for them -- it takes time to apply those five layers of false lashes, after all!


I've finally managed to translate my chronic (when can one begin to describe it as chronic, anyway?) fatigue into getting to bed at a decent hour. Go me! I've been averaging about 11 to 11:15, which is amazing, considering I used to rarely make it to bed before half past midnight. I feel better in the mornings, though I still can't get myself to study then most of the time, leaving it for the evening. On the other hand, I've been lazy with Travelpod. Bloh. At least I've been uploading pictures? XD;

Time for some reading before bed. I'm thoroughly caught up in World of Wonders, so lets see if I can manage another chapter or two before my eyelids shut of their own volition.

I got home a bit over two hours ago, but I've just been reading back through lj, playing with Tabitha and not unpacking. I figure I can do that tomorrow night, if I survive work.

Surprisingly, I slept for nearly six hours on the flight back from London. After watching a movie and reading a bit, I thought I'd try to take a nap. When I woke up, the flight map said "Time to destination: 2:10" and they'd started the final meal service. I imagine I slept right through the mid-flight snack, if indeed there was one!

The wonderful world of reading has sucked me right back in. One of the things I'd asked my mother to bring me was "The trilogy of books by Robertson Davies that includes The Lyre of Orpheus*," which she wrongly took to mean the Deptford Trilogy. No matter, I all but devoured the first one (Fifth Business) over the course of my trip and managed a good chunk of the second one on the bus back to Kichijouji. Excellently written, though nothing so far has made me laugh out loud in sheer delight as did the dinner party chapter in The Lyre of Orpheus, and I can't wait to plough through the rest of his works, as soon as I can get my hands on them.

That's all for now, I've got two episodes of Game of Thrones to watch. And then sleep, blessed sleep.

* Turns out the trilogy I meant is the Cornish Trilogy
Today has been unexpectedly productive. It's almost as though time has stretched out, allowing me to get more stuff done! Or maybe I just didn't waste my day in front of the computer, is all. XD I spoke to my parents on Skype, scrubbed the toilet (including the floor around it!), went out for lunch with Kimberly, studied Chinese and Japanese for a couple of hours, did laundry, washed the window sill in my room (this required going at it with a toothbrush, and sloshing water all over the place, to get two years' worth of dust and dirt out from between the runners), got groceries, cooked pasta, posted on Travelpod, and did some general tidying up. To add another item to the list, here are some book reviews. Six books so far in 2011, not bad! Did I even read six books in 2010? I can't say that I did. Major fail, self. -__-;;;

A spoiler warning is rather unnecessary, as I don't go into much detail, but you never know. Have you read any of these? Please discuss!

Canada from west to east: Beauty Tips from Moose Jaw )

Spies and volcanoes: The Vesuvius Club )

The fifth installment in the Nightrunner series: The White Road )

A Russian classic redone as a comic book: Le joueur )

Creepy and short: Smoke and Mirrors )

Further adventures of the Gentlemen Bastards: Red Seas Under Red Skies )

All right, that's enough. I've got some hooking* to do.

* That's crochet-wielding, for you non-crafty types. XD
I lied, I have something else I want to write about tonight. :3

I always thought that nothing could ever match the excitement I felt when looking forward to Peter Jackson's The Lord of the Rings movies, but here's something that might come as close as anything possibly could: HBO's A Song of Ice and Fire. Sure, those books don't have quite the importance to me that LotR does, but I do list them as among the best fantasy I've read -- now if only the author would give us the next volume, damn it! I got my father into the series as well, so I'll have to inform him that we're getting a tv version. Maybe one day we can marathon it together! ^o^

I'd read about the project to make the series into a tv series a while back, and remembered it a couple of days ago. Now that I've watched the trailers... EEEEEEEEeeeee! *fangirlish squeal* Here's hoping that it's on a level with Rome, i.e. better than The Tudors. And I really, really hope it's leagues ahead of The Mists of Avalon, if we're talking adaptations of fantasy books that hold some personal significance for me. XD;;;

So far it looks goooood, and the actors all look the part, though I didn't imagine Jaime quite so square-jawed. I always thought of Ned Stark as much darker and with a narrower face, but I completely trust Sean Bean with the role. After all, he made me care about Boromir, right?

It starts airing in April, but you can click around here if you want a little sneak peek.

Excitement! :D

:D :D :D

Meme Time!

Nov. 2nd, 2010 06:55 pm
My Neighbourhood )

My first love: )
It's one of those words that described something that does not make a noise but if it did make a noise would sound just like that. Bliss. It's like the sound of a soft meringue melting gently on a warm plate. (Terry Pratchett, The Truth, p. 234)

What's your favourite word, in any language?

In English, I like "thrilling". It's got a soft "th", the full "l", the "ing" ending, all of which are part of the core of English, to me. It sounds exactly like what it means, something that'll send good little shivers up your spine, especially when spoken in a whisper.

In French, my favourite word is "velours", another word that sounds exactly like what it means (velvet). A soft "v" sound to start off with, a little frisson of "ou" and a purring "r" at the end. Mmm, velours...

* * *

After two days of wanting to eat everything in sight -- and it's not even specific cravings, it's just OMG MUST EAT even when I've just eaten and am not feeling remotely hungry -- it finally dawned on me that on top of the weather suddenly being chilly again, I'm about to start my period. No wonder my body is craving nutrients. Not that I deprive it of any, it's just being testy.

* * *

Look at my first sticker sheet! Isn't it purty? :D )

I've since earned a sticker for completing a knitting project. Also, I have more charts!

Kimberly helped me make them, and while we were working on that at her place, I pondered what I should reward myself with.

"It's tough, because there's nothing I really deny myself. If I want it, I get it, unless it's unreasonably expensive, or something. I go out to eat with friends often, and I travel as much as I can already. And I don't want it to be clothes, because I'm attempting to stop buying clothes. And I own way too many pairs of shoes."

"How about accessories?"

Pause. "Have you seen my earring collection? XD;;;"

Laugh. "Right."

Finally, it dawned on me that the one thing that I do really like, and that I seldom ever buy, is fancy pastries. So each completed line will be a depaato pastry, which I will eat slowly at home, enjoying it along with a nice cup of tea. Now, doesn't that sound good? I can't wait!

I still haven't decided what I'll give myself when I complete a whole chart, though! Any suggestions?
Finally, some reviews! Discuss in the comments? ^_^

Everyone should read these books: Vellum, Ink )

Back to the classics: Good Omens )

Mamma Mia! )

Rome, season 1 & 2 )
Tomorrow is White Day, and you all know what that means, right? I will be officially divorced! o(^O^)o Not that I haven't considered myself as such for over two years -- and I just remembered that I failed to observe the two-year anniversary of my moving out on my own.

You know what's dangerous? Having an hour to kill in Shinjuku. Because I ended up at Odakyu and found that beyond the super-fancy and crazy-expensive perfume and make-up counters, there's a little "cheap" section, where you can get eyeshadow for under Y2000 a cake! *gasp* And it turned out I was in a mood for nail polish yesterday, even though the last time I did anything more to my nails than cutting or filing them was ages ago. Plus, there was this shade, in an adorable little bottle, called "Techno bar à Tokyo", so how could I not? It's sparkly black and I'm wearing it now. I also bought a couple of books that will hopefully level up my nihongo. I resisted buying the latest issue of JILLE, though I'm sure I'll cave in within a couple of days, because how can I resist Imajuku Asami's adorable face?

Later on, feeling proud of myself for not having given in to laziness and having opted to walk home from Mitakadai instead of taking the bus from Kichijouji, I remembered I'd left my bike... at Kichijouji station. *headdesk* So it took me an extra half hour to get home, because I wasn't about to pay the train fare to go two stations down the line!

In other news, I felt that after the uplifting, fascinating, inspiring, draining, bemusing experience that was reading Vellum and Ink, the only thing to do was to do back and revisit an old, well-loved friend. Yes, THAT book. The perfect fix when you've just finished something incredible and want something you know you'll love, something you know will make you smile and tear up a bit and will have you choking back laughter on the train because dammit, that description of a first-rate lurker gets you every time*. Because nothing brings down my "I've just read a great book!" high quicker than reading a lousy book right after, and I didn't want to take any chances!

Got my coworker to take a shot of me with the kiddies yesterday, and I was pleasantly surprised, when I looked at the picture afterwards, to see that in direct sunlight, I'm still truly blonde. Also amusing is how tiny the kids look beside my giant (sure, yuck it up, but I'm by no means small in this country!) self.

Speaking of my giant self, the Miracle of the Jeans failed to repeat itself when I tried on some shorts recently, though I supposed I shouldn't be too bitter about it. After all, a while ago it was the XL shorts I could barely get over my hips; now it's the L shorts that I can with great difficulty zip up and then be unable to move around in at all. And it's another excuse to not spend money! :D

My new budgeting plan is going quite well, in spite of having two major "extra" expenses over the past couple of weeks (sunglasses and getting hair lasered off my legs). It's simpler to withdraw all the money for the week at once, and I've settled on Monday as the start of the week. Hopefully, I'll be able to add a bit to my savings, especially since until the end of April the cash flow will be somewhat thinner between ending my second job, my first full-time paycheque coming at the end of April and one of my private students taking a break until May.

Now, time to take all the bobby pins out of my hair (my styling experiments continue...!) and get to bed.

* Good Omens, for those who don't count THAT book among their "would take it to a deserted island if I were only allowed five titles" list.
A week late, and a book fewer than I was hoping (am reading Vellum but have 40 pages left and figure if I don't post these now, it'll be another week...), but here are some reviews! As always, discuss in the comments if you have any thoughts on any of these things. ^_^

Shockingly, there is no death by butter knife! But here is a long review of it anyway. Girls Love )

Featuring the most badly-animated gay pâtissier ever! Antique Bakery (anime) )

Another reason to love KenKen, because there weren't enough already. ^_^;;; Butlers! Happy Boys )

No superlative seems strong enough! So You Think You Can Dance Canada )

I'm a pretty even-tempered girl, and it takes a lot for a book to frustrate me, but this book managed. And how! If anyone would like to read this book, I'll gladly give it to you -- you may want to skip this review, then, because I'm about to reveal the surprise ending, which totally surprised me because it had NO BUSINESS ENDING LIKE THAT! My Sister's Keeper )
The God of Small Things )

My private lesson was cancelled today, and I'm very proud of myself for coming home and actually doing something productive, in this case putting away all my laundry, reorganising my sewing cubbies -- and I found the extra button for my jacket, yay! -- and making myself a proper meal. Then I sat down to watch 5 episodes of SYTYCD Canada, leaving just the last two for tomorrow night. I'm mostly happy with the top 4 (I wish the last girl eliminated had stayed instead of one of the others, but I like her too, so it's all right) and I think I can guess who's going to win -- or who has won, really, since it's been over for a while >_< We'll see if I'm right!
So, um, yeah. Reviews. Have any of you people read:

Shadows Return )

Lady Chatterly's Lover )

Roald Dahl's Tales of the Unexpected )

I've still got all my reviews from last year to do, but I plead cookery as my excuse this evening (don't look at me like that -- it took a lot of motivation to chop up all those vegetables!). And there are no new tv reviews because I'm in the middle of three series at once and not even halfway through any of them. So You Think You Can Dance Canada, The Tudors and Antique Bakery (anime), if you must know.
I'm going to do this if it kills me... Reviews! D: Don't even ask about a recap of the Atami Experience, because my brain would have to be on, and it's... not. I haven't even uploaded my photos!

The Nightrunner series )
Last week, I picked up Luck in the Shadows (by Lynn Flewelling) at Book Off, not expecting anything, because the thought of an hour on the train without anything to read terrified me that much. And now, I'm totally hooked! Has anyone else read this? I'm writing to my mum to ask her to send me the rest of the series -- what's been published, anyway -- for Christmas, and I'm already annoyed that I'll have to wait that long to find out just how much time it'll take Serengil to work his way into Alec's pants Alec to accept the inevitable. Because seriously, if it doesn't happen, I will be severely disappointed! D:<

Speaking of Christmas, I'm already plotting the use of my vacation time. I'm pretty sure there will be a Lord of the Rings -- OF COURSE EXTENDED EDITION! -- marathon in there somewhere, in case anyone is interested in joining me. I mean, what else am I going to do with two whole weeks off? XD

My throat is feeling ominously raw, so I'd better get some sleep. After all, I won't be able to finish the costumes to my satisfaction if I'm sick, even with the One-Woman Sweatshop (i.e. K, who will probably be camping out at my place this weekend to help me finish) at my beck and call.
So, at least a few of you are familiar with the DragonLance books, right? ... Right?!

Before you click on the cut to read my Review In Pictures, there are a few things you should know: )

Now that that's been established, onto the (breast) meat of this post.

Show me the boobs! (part I) )
So I'm sitting in the internet cafe and there's a big cockroach crawling around the floor near my bag. I suspect it's trying to get at my book, because what roach wouldn't want to read a trashy romance novel? :D (I feel the need to add that I would never, gods forbid, buy such a book myself, but our hostel has a fully stocked library, and this is a title Anna told me I had to read, if I were ever to read a romance novel...)

Taiwan is still great, the food is still amazing, and we're in Hualien, about to have a beach day! It's sunny and hot, I've got my bikini, my towel, sunscreen, a hat, and two books (the book I brought with me, Murakami's "Kafka By The Shore", should be an effective antidote if I go into eye-rolling, oh-god-I-can't-believe-the-sap shock from "A Knight In Shining Armour").

I feel slightly hypocritical about mocking romance novels so much, but they're just so... Anyway, I prefer my romance in the form of fanfiction about gay tennis boys. XD
Today's reviews: Moll Flanders )

A Wrinkle In Time )
Why is it that the hardest things to shop for are what should be the simplest, most basic items? Jeans, watches, plain black shoes or trousers, bras -- they're all things I hate shopping for because I hardly ever find anything just as I'd like it; it's not the right fabric, it's uncomfortable, it looks cheap, it's too expensive... Topping that list, for me, is wallets, which is why I usually end up using the same (cheap) wallet for years, until it starts coming apart at the seams and I'm rather embarrassed to be seen with it. My current one, for example, is in a pitiful state, threads hanging loose and the fake crocodile skin rubbing off. Since I happened to be in Shinjuku yesterday, I thought, "If I can't find a wallet I like for a reasonable price in Shinjuku during the summer sales, I'll... keep on using this ratty old thing until it falls apart."

Thankfully, I found something nice, something on sale, something metallic green on the outside, purple on the inside and with pink trim. It's kind of painfully me. And while it's not the perfect wallet (as if such a thing existed!), it'll do quite nicely.

Yesterday I also managed to make myself a futon cover, so that I slept on my futon for the first time. I like it! Tabitha also approves, because it means that she can curl up next to my chest so that I can pet her. She also approves of it being folded up by the wall during the day, because it's one more comfortable thing to nap on.

When the end of June rolled around, I thought I should make some mid-year resolutions, or at least revisit the ones I made in January and try to get back on track, specifically regarding writing reviews and posting to my Travelpod. I haven't written any reviews in over two months, so I have a rather long queue of things to write about (25, to be exact) and I think the best way to go about it is to make myself do them all before M-P arrives on the 4th of August. I've written all the titles out on slips of paper and will draw them randomly, except for the ones I want to do reviews in pictures for. Those ones are the Japanese doramas and BL movies, of course, because they always amuse me and inspire snark, and it's much funnier with images. Also in this batch are a "romantic" "comedy" (quotes because it was neither romantic nor comedic) that made me want to claw my eyes out, some very good books, and anime porn.

Hee. :D

First up, a book about culture and identity: )
Today I was hooked up to teh intarwebs by NTT, and at 9:45 this evening, received a webcam from them.


Why? I don't remember the girl at Yodobashi, nor the two people I spoke to on the phone, nor the installation guy (granted, his job was only to set up my connection) saying anything at all about a webcam. Is it some sort of surprise gift? From what I understand of the accompanying letter, it's got something to do with a survey, so is this an incentive? Or do they think I've already filled out the survey? Because to my knowledge, I've done no such thing. I'll take the letter to work tomorrow and ask my (Japanese) boss what it all means.

On the other hand, I find it awesome that the Japanese think nothing of delivering things so late in the evening! The other day, I arrived home to find a missed delivery notice. It was 7:30, but I phoned the driver, and he was at my door not twenty minutes later with my package.

(The following taken from [livejournal.com profile] jokersama)

The Big Read thinks the average adult has only read six of the top 100 books they've printed below.

1) Look at the list and bold those you have read.
2) Italicise those you read part of but never finished.
3) Underline the books you LOVE (or at least really, really liked a lot).
4) Reprint this list in your own LJ so we can try and track down these people who've read 6 and force books upon them.
(Extra rule from [personal profile] supplanter: strike out the ones you disliked.)

Here be books )


- I've read all of Austen, but nothing whatsoever of Dickens.

- My father tried to read us The Wind in the Willows, but neither I nor my brothers ever took to it. He read Charlotte's Web to my brothers, but I was too old to really listen in, so I heard bits and pieces of it and it wasn't enough to tempt me.

- It was in secondary 2 that we read the first couple of chapters of Les misérables and in sec. 4 or 5 (or cégep?) that I read a bit of Germinal. I can't remember when I read an exerpt of Mme Bovary, but I must have at some point, right? Oddly, I've noticed many more references to it as a "scandalous novel" in English than in French.

- All told, I've read perhaps less than half a page of the actual Bible (passages quoted elsewhere notwhithstanding), except for the Song of Songs. ^____^

- Of the authors on this list, I've read some of their other books: Joyce's Portrait of the Artist As a Young Man (loved it!), Kazuo Ishiguro's When We Were Orphans (didn't move me too much when I read it, but it stayed with me more than I thought it would), and Steinbeck's The Pearl. The latter I might have appreciated more if I'd been older, but I was 11 and found it too weighty and depressing -- which is the point, no? I still don't understand why we were made to read that book (in sec. 1) before To Kill a Mockingbird (sec. 2) and Lord of the Flies (sec. 3).

- I didn't read Le petit prince until I was in my twenties, despite my mother's gentle prodding, because I was sure I'd find it unbearably sad. I was right, and I bawled.

- I have no interest in reading Wuthering Heights

- Marquez, Tolstoy and Dostoyevsky are on my Really Must Read list.
This past week saw me settling deeper into my routine* with the little darlings demons kids, and also the longer commute, so my usual at-home schedule of tv-watching, if you could even call it that, was sort of thrown off. But I bought rainboots! :D

Only two reviews, this week!

The Bondmaid )

Marie Antoinette )

* Totally random aside, but whenever I write this word, I always think of something I read once: a Canadian (from Montreal, I believe), had written a book of poetry that was published in the U.S. One of his poems included something about "hospital poutine" (I think the point was that it was bad poutine) but of course the American publishers had no idea what he was on about, so it was "corrected" and printed as "routine".

Damn, I miss poutine.



February 2012

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