Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Freedom of speech

Journalist Leigh Phillips has an excellent article on Ricochet about free speech in the aftermath of the Charlie Hebdo atrocities. If you've seen some of the Hebdo cartoons and thought, "Hey, the world *would* be a better place without that shit," you really really


need to read this.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Blasted cats!

No matter how recently she's been fed, no matter how long I brushed her fur and murmured sweet nothings in Her Imperial Ear, no matter how few minutes ago it was that I stopped what I was doing for me and petted her for a solid ten minutes - if I put her down on the floor in a fit of exasperation, O'Keefe adopts the Supreme Martyr Posture and facial expression and sits by my chair with her despairing gaze cast down to the floor. Emanating those evil Martyred Cat waves at me, silently. In her mind, she is the Most Abused, Most Starved, Most Neglected, Most Unloved Cat in all the universe. And I am the Evil Mom doing all those terrible things to her. Simply because I refuse to pet her 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.


What -

well, yes, okay, she was the sick one that kept me awake nights about 6 weeks ago because I was so worried she was dying - or worse, I'd have to decide to have her put to sleep.

What's that got to do with it?

Thursday, April 23, 2015

It appears that

a couple of people have somehow, miraculously, stumbled across my blog! So I thought I'd better post something. The freshest thing I have is that I finished reading The Girl on the Train by Paula Dawkins last night. It's on our local library's Mystery Book Club list soon, if not next meeting, so even though I originally requested it because I'd read a review, now it also saves me from having to say about Yet Another Club Selection, "I didn't read it." (There have been some problems with the list. They're getting straightened out. I am not the only one who's rejected The List.)

Anyway - I spent most of this book being really irritated with the main character. As in, if I wasn't bloody well DETERMINED to finish a damn book for the club, I probably would have quit somewhere about page 100. This is a personal thing (of course) I mean it's not because it's not well-written - it is *very* well-written - and it's not because the plot didn't make sense or was inconsistent or unbelieveable. The author did a terrific job, actually. She also used multiple points of view but the changes were clearly marked, and she used present tense which should have been distracting, but it wasn't at all.

No, it was me, and it's a fault I recognize in myself in real life, too: I don't like spending time with people who have character traits of my own which I also hate. This probably isn't unique to me. And maybe my irritation with them is a sign that I really need to work on myself a lot more. (I can hear you: "Ya THINK?")

Also, I'm not someone who tries to figure out the solution to mystery novels. I just go along for the ride. I mean, if I figure out whodunnit, the author has made it thumpingly obvious. In this one, I did NOT see the answer coming. I think I said out loud, "Well damn."

So I can recommend this book because it's very well-written, I think it's a good mystery, and the problems I had with it I believe are all my own. Go for it!

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

What is it about NaNo...?

Once again, NaNoWriMo has sucked me in. This time, it's April's Camp NaNoWriMo, wherein you can set your own project and word count goals - well, technically November's NaNo doesn't have power over you, you could set your own everythings there, too, but when I participate in November I go by the original rules.

In this one, I'm not. I'm working - rather, re-working - the novel I failed to finish in November 2013. It has bugged me ever since because I really like the thing. So I'm giving it a second chance, I'm just not doing up the whole big NaNo rah-rah thing, enlisting a "team" of friends to prod and praise me along the way, etc etc. Just trying to do it ... um, well, I haven't been doing it for the past three nights so I should really get off this thing and Just Do It.

But what is it about NaNoWriMo that's so compelling? The years I skip I feel guilty and like I'm missing out on something at the same time. There's that almost-irresistible pull...OK. Off to WRITE!

Saturday, April 04, 2015

Should have put this in the previous one

But I hadn't run across the Book Riot piece that made me think of this: do you keep a list of your favorite words? Maybe a tiny piece of paper tucked in the back of your wallet, or a sticky note on your laptop desktop...in your diary...or just in your mind?

I have just a handful that I've thought to write down, and remember. Here are some of mine:




(And no, the first two weren't inspired by Tolkien; they were on my list long before I remembered that story I read 35 years ago.)

I really, really love "leafy." And I'm lucky to live in a leafy neighborhood! (Means tons of leaves in the fall but that's OK, too.)

Doesn't look like this right now, but it will before long! I have to believe it will become Spring for real, any day now!

Took an online quiz...

Can't get the results panel to show up on here correctly so I'll just paste the text...and I see the background now extends over to the right side column - however, it's readable so I'll settle for that. Yes, I am that determined to brag. LOL

You either aced this mock-exam or got a lot more right 
than you did wrong, either way - Color us impressed! Your
 knowledge of the English language extends beyond a
 solid foundation of grammar and spelling, and into a 
finer understanding of syntax, diction, and rhetoric. 
Reading comprehension is also something you're skilled 
with, something most who are take for granted. Try to 
keep those grammar-based pet peeves in check whilst 
sharing your vast knowledge with the rest of the world!