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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

More things I am loving

1) Salman Rushdie When I discovered Rushdie a few years ago, I immediately wanted to devour everything he had ever written. Shalimar the Clown was the first book I'd read in years that actually made me cry! I know Rushdie probably isn't everyone's cup of tea but I just love him - his writing style is like poetry and the worlds he creates are fascinating and full of magical realism. His new book, Luka and the Fire of Life, is a sort of sequel to Haroun and the Sea of Stories which I haven't read, but I think it stands on its own. I haven't finished Luka yet, but I'm really enjoying it and it's a quick read - if Alice in Wonderland, the Scott Pilgrim series, a Miyuzaki film and Salman Rushdie were to all get together and have a beautiful love child it would be this book. More than just an adventure story, Luka takes a broader look at stories and the role they play in our lives and, while it acknowledges that today's kids are growing up with their own, new stories based in video games and technology, and we have to fight to keep the old traditional stories alive, it asserts that there is no reason these two worlds can't coexist and compliment each other. Plus how can you not love lines like this:
"Now it so happened that the moment when Luka shouted out in anger was one of those rare instants when by some inexplicable accident all the noises of the universe fall silent at the same time, the cars stop honking , the scooters stop phut-phuttering, the birds stop squaking in the trees, and everyone stops talking at once, and in that magical hush Luka's voice rang out like as clearly as a gunshot, and his words expanded until they filled the sky."
... who doesn't know exactly what that feels like? :) If you love reading and nerdiness, and want to check out Rushdie I'd recommend starting with Shalimar... I think it's probably the most accessible while still giving a good introduction to Rushdie's style of magical realism. Midnight's Children, while also awesome, is so full of allusions and metaphors involving Indian politics and history that you'd pretty much have to read an entire textbook to really understand it...which I did not do.... and The Enchantress of Florence is lovely as well. I've been meaning to pick up The Satanic Verses, but I haven't had a) a large chunk of time, or b) a chance to read up on my muslim theology... I learned my lesson with Midnight's Children and knowing the subject matter of Verses I don't want to make the same mistake twice!

2) Organization!!
Did I mention I'm in total denial about that whole moving thing? Yeah... over the last few days I've been busy re-arranging all my closets and cupboards. I love these glass door built-ins in my apartment... they give me motivation to keep my dishes neatly stacked :)

3) Helpful Books
So as it turns out, there's like, a whole ceremony thing that goes along with the wedding? What's up with that? I'd been so busy planning the music and food for the reception (aka party time) that I completely neglected the actual part where we get married. Like, we have to say stuff to each other. And other people have to say stuff. Ack! Luckily, one of my yoga friends recommended this book to me:

Since our officiant(s) isn't planning the ceremony for us we're basically on our own - which is great because it means it will be more personal, but also scary because it means a lot more work for us. This book is great though, and it even has a section on co-officiated ceremonies. Hooray!

4) Things that smell like summer I pretty much can't get enough of anything that smells or tastes like a coconut. I also have a mild obsession with body products, and Pacifica is one of my favorite lines - they're quite committed to using natural ingredients, no animal testing, and no sulfates which are harsh on skin. So, when I saw this new scent at Sephora this weekend I had to snap it up. Here comes the sun (and hopefully warm weather...)!

It's that time of year again...the time when we embrace the smell of grass, the taste of beer and mustard, and the agony of losing to the Yankees on the road. Oh wait, no we don't embrace that last one... but those other things are good. Also good - Victoria's Secret has baseball gear! I snagged one of these as my annual Twins gear purchase:
Not cheap but also not any more expensive than buying one at the ball park. We actually looked at why sports fans pay such high prices in my Corporate Strategy class last fall - fascinating analysis of value created and value added, but I won't bore you with it here :)

Go Twins! Oh yeah, and my baseball blog I share with Ben, Peanuts From Heaven, is now on Twitter! Follow us and you too can be party to the snarky commentary and random humor that is PFH. DO IT NOW.


  1. I jumped into Rushdie headfirst; Midnight's Children was my introduction to his writing. I'm sure I could have gotten more out of it if I'd known more about Indian history and politics, but I thought it was fascinating and engaging nonetheless. Satanic Verses is phenomenal, and I don't think there's a real need for any more than a general-knowledge understanding of Islam. I haven't read many of his more whimsical later works, but they're on my list.

    I don't know if you're at all into things that cross into the sci-fi realm, but Ian MacDonald takes Arthur C Clarke's maxim "a sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic" to create a sort of sci-fi/magical realism. And a lot of his work is even set in future India, which is pretty interesting.

  2. Alice in Wonderland + Scott Pilgrim + Miyuzaki + Salman Rushdie = Pure unadulterated awesomeness!!!

    So excited to get back and curl up with good books (I will claim that all summer reading I do is preparation for teaching said books in the next school year--yay work/pleasure overlap!!)

  3. @Evan - nice! I'll have to check out Ian MacDonald, I've never read anything by him. I don't normally read much sci-fi but I did pick up "Game of Thrones" recently at Tessa's suggestion.


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