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Archive for November, 2012



Friday, November 30th, 2012
Three little pigs as would have been told by Shakespeare

By way of OMG funny, you need to watch this. The initial bit is about a minute long or so, and then the tale. Please watch. It’s so funny.

Thursday, November 29th, 2012

I have to admit it: I’ve been sick. Yesterday and today. Fever, dizzies/vertigo/shakiness, intestinal distress, blah blah blah. I’m feeling slightly better at this juncture. Not as dizzy, and walking across the house doesn’t make me want to pass out. I’m still having some chills and my temperature won’t quite settle, but I’m teaching tomorrow. Come hell or high water. I’ve actually been relatively healthy for awhile (aside from the SAD stuff) and so I can’t complain too much. I’m assuming one of the nasty little bugs crawling around campus got me. Or I got it in OR and hauled it back and will now share with my students, who so generously share with me.

I’m considering bunion surgery. Apparently this can be done without general anesthesia and while I’ll have to be totally off my feet for a few weeks, it’s pretty doable. Given my dad’s horrible bunions, I know where I could end up and I’d rather do some repair now.

In the meantime, I’m being warmed by corgis and trying to take care of the kids. Luckily the kids are fairly able to do things for themselves, so mostly I’m staggering around to feed them and try to help with homework and wishing I had a house elf to clean. I wonder if I could hire one?

Monday, November 26th, 2012
More hours!

There aren’t enough hours in the day. Or I move too freaking slowly. And I’m tired from last week. All the same, I’m also prepped for tomorrow’s class. Oh, and I started a new block today. Doing a 20th century Brit Lit class with a focus on Postcolonialism. We’re reading from an anthology and Albert Memmi’s The Colonizer and The Colonized, plus watching some films, including Rabbit Proof Fence, Junoon, District 9 (and yes, I know, it’s an alien movie, but it really recreates and mirrors the issues of colonization, even though it isn’t specifically about colonization). And then I’m thinking about Lagaan, but the trouble is that it’s very long. I could switch it out for two of the others, but I just am not sure. Luckily I don’t have to make my mind up today. I often use The Wind That Shakes The Barley and Passage to India, but I want something different and Junoon, while it isn’t set in the 20th century, deals with the Sepoy Rebellion and establishes the atmosphere and I haven’t used it before. On the other hand, Lagaan might be better. Sigh. This is hard.

I’m also trying to decide how much time I want to invest into Heart of Darkness, or if I want to go another route with the stories and cover more ground. I’m not sure how good their reading skills are and whether we can read HoD in the time that I want to allow. That’s a choice I really need to make very soon. I don’t like planning way ahead for this class because I want to find out how students will deal with the reading first and if I have to adjust the schedule. So I usually plan a week at a time. But this time I’m only doing a few days and waiting to see how well they do with the Memmi book, because I may have to take more time with it than I’ve planned. I don’t like ramming ahead and having them feel lost. Better to lay a really good foundation and get them grounded in the terminology and then get going from there. So I wait to see how they will do with tonight’s reading and writing assignments.

The dogs are really enjoying the fact that I’m reading stuff for class, because they get to be on my lap and they make excellent lap desks, not to mention leg warmers.

Sunday, November 25th, 2012
eye roll so hard they may get lost in my brain

There’s this new article up on Fox News, called The War On Men. It’s written by Suzanne Venker. I want to read it as satire, but there’s absolutely no sign that it is anything but a serious discussion of what’s wrong with women that make men not want to marry. One of the specific points is that “women aren’t women anymore.” This after interviewing hundreds, if not thousands (author’s words), of men and women. In doing so, she’s found a subculture of men who don’t want to get married because of women not being women. (One wonders how large this subculture is, out of the hundreds, possibly thousands, of people she interviewed that included men and women, but she doesn’t discuss what anybody but this ‘subculture’ of men say).

According to Venker, one of the issues is that more women than men are getting college degrees and making money, which has changed the relationship between men and women. Apparently in a bad way. Also, women are angry and defensive and think of men as enemies. No, I’m not making this up. This has caused women to shove men off their pedestals (I wasn’t aware they had any) after feminists (Oh those evil equal rights for women rabble rousers!) convinced them to climb down off their pedestals. Which should apparently have been cozy enough and happy enough places to be for any real woman (as opposed to the new ‘woman’ who isn’t really a woman anymore, according to this subculture of men that Venker is quoting). Now, poor poor men, have nowhere to go. What do they do without their pedestals?

Venker says:

Contrary to what feminists like Hanna Rosin, author of The End of Men, say, the so-called rise of women has not threatened men. It has pissed them off. It has also undermined their ability to become self-sufficient in the hopes of someday supporting a family. Men want to love women, not compete with them. They want to provide for and protect their families – it’s in their DNA. But modern women won’t let them.

So okay, because women are working and going to school, and unwilling to put up with traditional ‘values’ that rob them of equal rights, they are pissing men off (well no duh–any guy who wants to control and contain women for his own use and pleasure would get pissed if he couldn’t have his lordly way). Poor men can’t love women who might actually compete with them. Though what the hell that means, I don’t know. I mean, compete? Run a race? If two people work and have money and live a life of equality, how exactly is that competition? I’m confused.

Apparently, women won’t let men do what their DNA tells them to do. That includes raping women, by the way, which I’ve read articles saying that it’s in men’s DNA and they can’t really control the need. Yeah. Biology is destiny. Right. Bullshit.

Venker’s answer to this horrible problem:

Fortunately, there is good news: women have the power to turn everything around. All they have to do is surrender to their nature – their femininity – and let men surrender to theirs.

Really? Okay, so there’s so much wrong with this article I can’t hardly begin to say it. The fact is, no man I know would be willing to be classified as on her side. It postulates men as weak and completely dominated by some essential nature that can’t compete with their brains, ambition, emotions, and so on. Basically men in this scene are children who can’t achieve what they want because of a bunch of evil educated working women. Underneath all this is a implied belief in the good old days when men where men and women were safely perched on pedestals where they could be screwed and have babies and their mouths duct taped as needed. They didn’t move, didn’t impinge on a man’s life except as required by her nature (babies and sex, and the labor of keeping house and feeding the man and stroking his ego). Newsflash: those good old days never existed. Women weren’t happy in that scenario. They were frequently, dare I say it, pissed? Like supposedly men are now? But it’s better that they be pissed and this subculture of men be appeased? Stupid.

In the end, treating other people with generosity, tolerance, friendship, kindness, and equality, is the key to good relationships between anyone. This article seems to suggest that someone must be subjugated in order for someone else to be happy. It’s flat out wrong.

Sunday, November 25th, 2012
Coma post

I drove home yesterday with the kids and the dogs. Took awhile. About 13 hours plus a bit. And there was fog and snow and rain. Supposedly there was a nasty storm moving into MT and so I thought it smarter to get home before it hit. Now it’s relatively sunny here (but maybe not where I drove) and I am tired. And sore. And tired. And sore. I slept late and now I want to go back to bed. But I cannot. Must feed kids, do laundry, get groceries, and oh, prep class tomorrow. Because it’s a new block. Can we start next Monday? Or skip this block altogether? Is it possible to call in sick on the first day of class? No? Sigh. Guess I’d better get to work then. If I can get up out of this coma. A waking coma?

I hope you all had a lovely Thanksgiving, those who celebrated, and for everyone else, I hope you’ve had a wonderful weekend. Blessings on you all.

Friday, November 23rd, 2012
I accidentally went shopping today

Okay, that isn’t really true. It wasn’t accidental. We went to see Rise of the Guardians, which was SO MUCH FUN!!! Love it. Want to see it again. Anyhow, we went to see it, and the Arthur Christmas video trailer showed, and well, we wanted to see it too, this last night in Salem before heading home, so we went into Best Buy for it. What a madhouse. But we got in and out pretty easily, and we are now settling in to watch it. (I also got Brave for my daughter for Christmas, but that seems hardly like black Friday shopping). I did go into the mall though. We got to the theater super early to get tickets (and hardly anyone was there and it was wonderful!!!) and since the theater is at the mall, we walked down to Starbucks for chai and hot chocolate. I got to see all the lovely decorations and there weren’t horrible crowds, so I enjoyed it.

And that, aside from Turkey sandwiches and pumpkin pie and packing up, was the day.

Go see Rise of the Guardians. You won’t regret it.

Friday, November 23rd, 2012
Lovely Thanksgiving

Had a lovely lovely Thanksgiving day. The food was excellent, the company much better, and generally there was much laughter and gobbling of food. Plus a wonderful walk with the family and dogs. All around, a wonderful day.

Today the plan is to go see Rise of the Guardians, if we can get in. I don’t know if it will be mobbed, or if everyone will be out shopping. I’m hoping for shopping. We will also load up the truck and get ready to go back to Montana, which happens on Saturday and Sunday. I don’t want to go, for the record. Surprised?

Thursday, November 22nd, 2012
Day of Thanks

On this day, I’m thankful for so many things that I can’t begin to even cover it all.

1. For my husband, who has always been not only supportive of me and my career choices, but my best helper and cheerleader.
2. For the fact that my husband was willing and able to stay home seven years as a stay at home dad.
3. For my kids, even when they drive me out of my gourd.
4. for writing.
5. for books.
6. For fans and readers.
7. For computers that make my day to day life easier as far as writing and keeping connected with people.
8. For friends who are funny, snarky, amazing, supportive, and caring.
9. For strangers who are caring and supportive, amazing, snarky, funny and generous.
10. For my dogs, who give love unconditionally.
11. For my health, which has been ever improving.
12. For laughter.
13. For smart people in the world who work to make it better.
14. For my parents and the rest of my family.
15. For green grass, blue sky, beautiful oceans, tall mountains, and all the creatures that walk and crawl over the earth.
16. For truth, no matter how hard to say or hear.
17. For music.
18. For hope.
19. For joy.
20. For being able to be Thankful.

Wednesday, November 21st, 2012
The next few days

Will involve no shopping. Went today to get tires for the truck and some last minute food stuff from the store, and that was pretty much a nightmare. Oh, and did I mention the DMV? Scary. So yeah, tomorrow will involve cooking and possibly dog walking if it gets sunny again (there was sun today and a lovely walk was taken by dogs and me and kids). Also, got the car back. It is running well now. Yippee!

I have absolutely no intention of getting out for shopping on Friday, though I do plan to go see Rise of the Guardians. That will be fun.

I also have my first Blood Winter review, for your perusal. It’s by Harriet Klausner, for those who know what that means. And it’s quite lovely.

Happy Thanksgiving to all my USA friends, and for those of you who will not be having Thanksgiving, Happy Day!

ETA: ACK! And Douglas Meeks pointed out that he’d posted his review of Blood Winter today on Bitten By Paranormal Romance! Also a rocking review!

Monday, November 19th, 2012
Here’s a problem

I just got Martha Wells’ the Siren Depths. I want to read it. A lot. I didn’t think it was out for another month. But I feel this deepseated need to reread the first two in the series. I LOVE these books. So I don’t know what to do! *scream*