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Jul. 30th, 2010

I think I'm somewhere on the upper end of the rereading spectrum. I don't reread every book like Jo Walton, but I reread most books I liked. My mom, on the other end of the spectrum, never rereads a book. If I reread a book right away, though, no matter how much I liked it, I'm far too aware of what is about to happen that I can't focus on what is happening.

Since I reread, it's next to impossible to part with of books. The books I get rid of have to be ones that I never want to read again, by an author whose new book I won't buy, in case I have to go back and reread the series, and have no sentimental attachment. I've been perusing my bookshelves, and 95% fall into one of these four categories: 

              1. books I will definitely reread and now that I'm thinking about them, I want to stop writing this post and do so.   (I'm starting to get (irrationally) terrified that I can reread To Say Nothing of the Dog and the Miles Vorkosigan series and The Privilege of the Sword too many times, and there won't be the same pull.)
            2. books I will reread sometimes, if it's part of a series and there's a new one or I'm in the mood. (I'm going to stick with only naming books for good reasons.)             

            3. books I remember liking a really lot , but I'm scared that they're not as good as I remember them, so I can't get rid of them but I sort of avoid reading them. I would never buy them now, but I can remember how much I loved them.  (Developing the ability to notice flaws in books, as opposed to reading them as fast as possible can be really frustrating now. I used to finish every book I started.)

            4. mysteries. I have the magic ability (or curse) to forget the murderer in any mystery I read. I've read Gaudy Night three times and have been surprised every time. (I only know now because I had a conversation about forgetting immediately after I finished it. And I love that book.) The same with Memory, by Lois McMaster Bujold and any Agatha Christie novel besides Murder on the Oriet Express. (I read all her mysteries one summer and I think if I space it out enough, I can rediscover her mysteries every few years.)

I don't have any sort of concluding thought for this. Now, (as in, from five minutes ago) I'm considering rereading all the books I have, alphabetically, to see if my memories and judgments are correct at all. If this was the beginning of the summer, I probably would try, but there's only a month left.

(I have finally finished a post and unless I edit it into nonexistence in the next five minutes, I will have actually posted a post. Point for me. :) (and I may have overused the poor parentheses.))


This Is Why I'll Never Be An Adult

Usually, the entire internet has seen stuff like this by the time I find it, but in case you haven't, this is awesome and hilarious and very true. http://hyperboleandahalf.blogspot.com/2010/06/this-is-why-ill-never-be-adult.html

I was babysitting three kids earlier this week, two of whom are in middle school, and we were going swimming at a pond. Posted at the beach was a list of rules and one of them was that all children had to be accompanied by a responsible adult. I was all "Really? Me? A responsible adult?" and the kids were like, "Duh. Yeah, you are."

On one hand, I'm pretty sure that adults don't feel that much more grown-up than me, at least in some ways. On the other hand, I still don't understand why matching furniture to the room is important, as opposed to just buying a folding table that costs a couple hundred dollars less than a real kitchen table. Not to mention that I still get overly excited when I get to use phrases like "I'm picking my friend up at the airport tomorrow" and "I just deposited a check" because they make me sound like a real adult. 

Also, there is a tiny tupperware tub of peanut butter in my room, sitting on a bookshelf. It's been there for approximately seven and a half weeks. I'm pretty sure they take points off for stuff like that.


My Biological Anthropology class manages to amaze me in someway almost every class. Sometimes, it's in a good way. Sometimes, it's most of a why would you ever want to know that.

The latest fact?

There are three species of lice: the kind that lives in blankets and carpets and such. The kind that lives in your hair on your head. And the kind that's also called crabs and is an STD.

A biological anthropologist who knew this fact realized that if you sequenced the DNA of the hair lice, and compared it to each other, you could make a guess to approximately how long ago the human species started having thinner hair in places other than our head and crotch.

I think that's so cool.


Mar. 24th, 2010

Today was a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. It started and ended with the frustrating feeling that I could have done better at things, even though I was trying.

So, Five Things that Made Me Happy Today:

1. Tour Groups. Tour groups make me happy every time I see them on campus, possibly out of schadenfreude because I'm so glad I'll never have to take on again, but they also remind me that I am really glad I came to BU.

2. I rode my beautiful racing bike instead of my mountain bike for the first time since last fall and tomorrow I get to try my new clip-pedals. I love my bike so much.

3. Outing myself as bi. I really enjoy doing this especially when I don't get any kind of reaction and while I don't go out of my way to let people know, it came up in conversation.

4. I'm reading Martha Wells' The Element of Fire, and so far it's fantastic. I am completely in love with the two main characters, Captain Thomas Boniface and Kade Carrion. So far the politics of the court are complicated and (fairly) realistic feeling without being boring at all, which is a rare combination.

5. I have neon green nail polish on.

Now I am going to learn how to translate Ancient Egyptian.

Strange Appearing Ghoti

I woke up this morning and as I microwaved a tiny biscuit thing, I realized that there was a ghoti* on top of the microwave. It's in a little glass jar with sparkly unicorn and kitten stickers and the name 'Esteban.' I stared at it for a good thirty second, trying to figure out if it was real or if it was just a picture on a little sticky thing pasted on the side of the jar, like the picture in soap bottle.

I eventually figured out that the ghoti was indeed real, without harming the fish in anyway.

Then I started thinking about when the ghoti had appeared in my room. I doubt it was this morning, but I didn't notice it last night, when I used the microwave. So either my roommate got a ghoti sometime between 1 and 10 in the morning, or there's been a ghoti for days and I haven't noticed it. I'm kind of hoping there was a last minute ghoti sale this morning somewhere.

* I'm saying ghoti because I'm pretty sure that they're not supposed to be in dorms, so it's supposed to be a code. A very obvious one, that you can figure out by either pronouncing phonetically or googling.

Is it really still Monday?

Some time around two this afternoon, I realized it really was only Monday. Not Tuesday and definitely not Wednesday ...

I am on the second of four days of waking really early. (For me, early is anytime before 8. Really early is anytime before 7. YMMV.) Yesterday, I was running in the Hyannis 10k race with the BU Triathlon Team. This week I'm participating in a research study and it's much easier to do the visits in the morning before class. (Research studies = best paid job that requires no skills and helps increase scientific knowledge. So long as I don't do any weird military psychic studies like that Stephen King novel, it's awesome.)

Triathlon practice makes my sleeping schedule slightly twisted. I usually get tired after dinner and feel like spending the rest of the night on my bed, doing a combination of internet, homework and reading. Then I have triathlon practice and I get back around 10 with no homework done, wide awake and enough endorphins and adrenaline to stay awake until at least 1 or 2. This is really good for getting homework done at night, but it means that I am never tired when I actually have time to sleep. And since I'm getting up three hours earlier than I usually do this week, my days have stretched on and on and on.

During my nap today, I had a dream that I was getting delivery pizza to my dorm. Just before I could take the bag from the delivery man, my phone woke me up to a text from my friend, telling me that she was eating dinner in five minutes. Is that not the weirdest dream coincidence ever?

Sunday Afternoon

I spent this afternoon sitting on my bed writing. When I started, I could see the river start to unfreeze and by the middle of the afternoon it was mostly melted. Then I watched it get white and freeze back up again. Now it's completely frozen again and it matches the color of the evening sky perfectly.



When I went off to college, I imagined that I would be going to all these events in Boston and living it up in the city, and then I found out how awesome college is and I haven't left Comm Ave nearly as much as I though I would. I did make it to Boskone last weekend.

I had a really good time. I think it might have had the best ratio of good panels out of all the cons I've been to so far. The one on the Heroine's Journey, as opposed to the Hero's Journey was probably my favorite, although one about the trope of magic going away and one about nontraditional fantasy were close behind. I have a couple of ideas that are starting to be stories in my head.

Like always, I came back with a ridiculously long list of books that I need to read as soon as possible.

I actually commented at a panel for the first time ever and then did it two other panels. (*squee!*) The panel was about the issue of aging fans at conventions and if there's a generation gap. It also had my one problem with the convention. Cut because I go on for so long about the so-called generation gap in fansCollapse )

Despite that, I still had a really good weekend and I talked to some interesting people and I will probably go again next year. I'd like to try Arisia, which people mentioned had a younger base. I know next to nothing about anime and manga, which I think it focuses on a little more, but it would be interesting to go. And I got Blackout in the Dealer's room, Connie Willis's new book which had either sold out or never been stocked at the three bookstores I went to. (I finished it Monday night--I have never been so worried that Hitler was going to invade England and doom the world. Seriously. The Battle of Britain was scarily close to being lost. I am still a little concerned about it.)

So basically, some complaints, but a fun weekend over all.


Snow Day!

All classes after two o'clock were canceled today, because of the incoming snowpocalypse. I'm assuming that outside of Boston, there is actually snow, as opposed to sleet and rain. I am making wild berry zinger tea and then I'm going to use the time to write.

Something I was thinking about during my statistics class on Monday was what kind of books each of my classes would be.

My Biological Anthropology would be a interesting nonfiction book, like one of the popular science books that explains the history of humans through bread or alcohol or sex.

My writing seminar is obviously fantastical steampunk, since it's about the fantasy of the Fin-de-Siecle.

Lost Languages and Decipherments is like a Guy Gavriel Kay or Connie Willis novel, where you practically drown (in a good way) in the interesting facts and ideas and events of history that don't seem related until the end, when everything comes together in a fantastic and satisfying way.

Ballroom dancing is a comedy of manners.

Statistics, the class that got me thinking about this, is a picaresque novel, in the sense of being very episodic, with a number of apparently unrelated events occurring one after another with little or no causation. Ideas are thrown at me, mentioned briefly and forgotten as we move on to something totally different and to all appearance unrelated, until abruptly we return to them, for again, no apparent reason. It is useful and easy and I feel like I'm walking into an ambush of impossible math.

What kinds of books would your classes be?
I'm going to the Triathlon Collegiate National Championship.

I don't really know any another way to show how fantastically excited and happy and awesome that makes me feel other than to stop writing this post and dance around the room. Again. So picture me hopping up and down in my dorm room while hugging myself and rechecking the email to make sure I didn't misread it. And I'm grinning too.

I almost didn't apply because I'm a freshman, it's my first year on the team, I know there are other woman faster than me, so why be disappointed. I ended up sending in my race resume on the last day because I realized how abysmally stupid I was being to keep myself out of the running for no other reason than I didn't think that I would make it, even though I've done probably as many triathlons as almost anyone else on the team, because I did them during high school. I even wrote a post in my head about how I was glad that I applied even if I didn't make it because I had no reason not to apply, but I decided not to tell anyone until I knew one way or the other.

It feels really good to get this because I know I deserve it. I've been working really hard at practice all year and especially since coming back from break.

I'm so, so, so happy right now.