Tuesday, July 24, 2007

on reading

It occurred to me to feel a little silly about how deeply invested I am in the Harry Potter series -- my anticipation, my midnight tryst with hundreds of other fans (of all ages), and my dream of sharing these books one day with my child/children. I will say that I don't know if I would have sobbed quite so loudly if it hadn't been, well, that time of the month. But what of it? Why not cry about a book? About a ten year investment in a gorgeously developed gang of characters?

So the feeling of sillyness came up, and I looked at it, and thought, hmm, how interesting. And instead of shame, a wave of gratitude for READING, and writers, and books gracefully rose to the surface. My mother and her mother have modeled reading for me my whole life. I don't ever remember not reading as a child. And looking back, at the hundreds of books I have read, and the many, many I have reread, I think -- what a gift. All the complicated, difficult feelings I experienced as an adult -- reading saved me. While I didn't have the skills to negotiate the depths of my depression (or life) induced misery, I could READ.

I don't know how many times I read the Anne of Green Gables books as a child and teen. As an adult, I read and reread Ellen Gilchrist. Sometimes, books were like air -- I'd gulp desperately and finally, breathe easier as I turned the pages.

Sometimes, books were a way of numbing out, to be sure. But more often, I think, reading was an escape to something. A place of presence and meaning, of authentic emotion.

done for now,

harry potter, harry potter

I won't say anything, anything at all about the plot, because i'm afraid that anything i say might give something away. What I think I can say...

1) Last night, I ate a good, healthy meal and then permitted myself the luxury of uniterrupted hours. I finished the book. I read it really slowly, referenced past novels so that I fully understood the significance of each horcrux, and rereaad chapters as I went through so I made sure I knew what was going on. I didn't want it to be over.

2) Now that I read it, I keep going back and rereading parts.

3) I sobbed through several chapters. I cried so loud that my housemate came to check on me. I also laughed out loud through several moments.

4) I will be able to read the series to my unborn/not-yet-adopted children. That to say, the ending satisfied me deeply.

5) I need to wait awhile before I download the audiobook. Readling Deathly Hallows was a really emotional experience.

Thank-you, JK Rowling. Reading your books, especially Deathly Hallows was a truly wonderful experience.

p.s. The image above is the cover of the UK edition of the book.

p.p.s. check out JK Rowlings personal website. It's pretty great.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

recent obsessions

amy winehouse
I can't stop listening to this album. And watching her videos online. she's amazing.

charlaine harris
She's a mystery writer, and I've never really been a mystery reader before. I got way hooked on her "Southern Vampire" series, starring Sookie Stackhouse, the telepathic waitress (my Mom did too). Now I just finished another series of hers -- the Lily Bard "Shakespeare" books. Strong, complex, southern heroines. Funny and well-written.

the upcoming release of The Golden Compass
the movie. 12.07.07. One of my favorite books is becoming a film. Please read the book, if you haven't already, or listen to the AMAZING audio recording. And Daniel Craig, of 007 fame, is playing Lord Asriel. Enough said.

the upcoming release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
I'm torn. Do I read it quickly and find out who dies? But then, this is the LAST one, so I should read it slowly, right? And what if JK kills....Harry? Can't do, can't be. How could I read this book to my hypothetical children and get them all invested in Harry Potter if he's going to die? Unbearably, I have a board meeting at 9 a.m. on the Saturday (12:01 a.m.) it's released.

tomatoes and blueberries
It's that time of the summer. tomato, basil, fresh mozzarella. bliss. And though the blueberry harvest was hit hard by the spring freeze, both the picking and the eating (with homemade shortcake) was still perfect.

summer movies
Live Free or Die Hard.
Bruce Willis, as you might have heard, brings down a helicopter with a van. It was totally awesome.

back to black

it's just been that kind of day.

or pieces of several days broken up by ok moments.

i'm in a kind of numbed out daze and i'm not exactly wild with coping mechanisms at the moment.

i have work to do that i'm not doing. i have something to turn in tomorrow that i have GOT to review before mid-morning. it's now 11:07 P.M. and if my summer house-mate hadn't let out my dog, I'd also be a terrible dog owner.

i am almost three-weeks overdue on an email i promised to send.

i have laundry to put away (this is not tragic. it's just that i could be creating some sanity in my physical environment if i hadn't been doing all kinds of ridiculous distracting stuff for the last few hours).

my head just won't stop with the mean self-judgmental crap.

well, it does sometimes stop.

well, it just hasn't stopped for several hours.

ok. this is funny. writing this post has somehow broken some kind of spell. i hope the break lasts long enough for me to pack up my computer and go home. if i can at least get to sleep at a reasonable hour then tomorrow doesn't have to totally suck.

i'm lonely, i think. well, last time i checked, that wasn't a crime. it doesn't make me weird that i'd like someone to love and to love me back. not too weird to want a family of my own.

mostly, i do ok with this wanting. mostly i cope with this particular kind of lonely. i'm grateful for lots of good things.

well, tomorrow is another darn day.

Saturday, July 07, 2007