Friday, August 31, 2007
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
To me, that's when you know you're reading a great read; when you notice the part of the book in your right hand is noticeably slimmer than that in your left, and you slow down as much as you can to stretch out the magic of the story.That's from here.
One morning at a gun show, just before the show opened, my boss noticed me with my nose in a book and asked "Whatchoo doin' there? You a bookworm?" Not ten minutes later, someone strolled over to our tables and asked an obscure technical question. Without looking up, I piped up with the answer and my boss, completely without irony, asked "How do you know all that stuff?" I nearly bit my lip off choking back the cascade of smartass replies that sprang immediately to mind. "See the squiggly black marks between the covers here? They're a secret code that conveys information."Full story (and read the full story) here.
Friday, August 24, 2007
I'm not being fair, and I promise I will read his book. I'm sure he didn't come off the way he wanted to during Colbert's difficult interview (Colbert's a comedian, not a reporter, so his interviews are...hard on the interviewee).
I had already bought and planned to read his book. I'm a little soured to him, but I'm telling myself not to let a 3-minute TV appearance keep me from reading and trying to understand his arguments. The book is close to the top of my reading pile, so get ready - I'll talk about it again when I finish.
Wednesday, August 22, 2007
This is a great little book. Bodanis explains the science all around us, from the biology of the critters living in the lawn to the chemical composition of toothpaste to the physics of a thunder storm. I think it's a afscinating premise, and Bodanis uses the narrative of day and night to contain all the biology, physics, chemistry, mathematics, and whatnot that a trivia lover craves. The book reads slow, but that's a feature, not a bug - there's some very tight and nicely explained science here, accurate from all I can tell and accessible to the average interested reader.
I'm mailing my copy to my nephew. He's a wanna-be know-it-all. He'll love this.
Thursday, August 09, 2007
Here with a Loaf of Bread beneath the Bough,
A Flask of Wine, a Book of Verse---and Thou
Beside me singing in the Wilderness---
And Wilderness is Paradise enow.
I could be more creative with the piano. I can feel the instrument breathe. Different phrases breathe at different times, and I can control that. But I can't let go. Improvising is difficult for me. Keeping time with other instruments is difficult, because I'm used to feeling the music and how I think it wants to slow down or speed up to breathe. One time I had friends over in high school. We made music. I played piano. Kevin had his guitar. Rose had a recorder and Amy had a flute. Pam had a cheap drum of mine. We had fun. I got high on music. I was actually jamming, somehow I knew what I was doing. When they left, my mom said I couldn't do that again, because the room we were in, the room with the piano, had white silk couches and she didn't want my friends sitting on them. We could have broken the glass table, she said. My friends didn't say hello or chat with her. We made too much noise.
And that was that.
I'm remembering this because I'm settled (more or less) into my new house. My electric piano has arrived. And I can play and sing, and the acoustics are grand. Music is back in my life.