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jumble of things

I'm tired, I spent all day running about with friends (fun but exhausting), I have to get up tomorrow at a reasonable hour, and I can't go to sleep, apparently.

What was going to be an hour of bowling turned into an hour of bowling, then a quick run to the mall (one friend is leaving for two months tomorrow, and needed to return something), then about four hours at karaoke. As a result, I've been earwormed terrifically with this song. I am going to link you to the video with lyrics, because the music video is an incredibly emotionally-manipulative, sad piece of...of...film. WHY are so many Chinese music videos so sad?


(Totally unrelated.)

You know, when I used to live in a 4-person household, the milk never went bad. This is because other family members are much bigger fans of milk and obviously we'd drink it long before the expiry date. But on my own, I keep milk mostly for tea, and sometimes I'm unpleasantly surprised by curdled stuff. So I've gotten used to sniffing and tasting milk very carefully every time to make sure it's still okay.

Milk is such a ubiquitous thing that I used to drink it without ever thinking about taste. But now that I have to assess its freshness, I can taste so clearly the animalness of it. It's not milk, it's quite unavoidably liquid that came from an animal, and while it doesn't really gross me out, it's so weird. How does this even come through taste? I think I'd like to go back to my ignorance.


THERE ARE TOO MANY BOOKS IN MY ROOM. They're on my shelves and on the floor and under my desk and under my bed and on my night table and stacked on my table and desk and EVERYWHERE. It's starting to drive me a bit bonkers. Every time I tidy up, they just get sprawled everywhere again. I need to make another trip to the library, but I haven't reviewed them yet! Oh god.

While I was waiting for friends this morning--I love them, but J was a full hour late and generally they're never punctual--I sat in Chapters and read Karen Miller's Empress. I've read Karen Miller before--she wrote some really great stuff set in the Star Wars Prequel EU mostly focused on Kenobi and Skywalker (easy path to my heart). Empress is gritty fantasy instead. Somehow, considering the extensive torture sequence in Wild Space, in which iirc Kenobi touched a lightsaber to his wound in order to use the pain to connect with Coruscant (AUGH), I'm not terribly surprised by the darkness of Empress.

The interesting thing (to me, anyway) is that while I'm interested in continuing with Empress, which starts off with the protagonist (a girl) watching her mother be beaten and then raped and being subjected to regular beatings herself--as indeed all the women are in this tiny, desert-locked village--I couldn't get more than five pages past Hilary Mantel's Wolf Hall. Like Empress, Wolf Hall starts with a son getting beat by his father, but I think there's a vein of kindness running through Empress that I really didn't think was going to happen in Mantel's novel, and I immediately ditched. Hekat in Empress is definitely subjected to highly distilled misogyny, but she gets away, and starts exploring a new land. Mantel on the other hand--well, it's straight up historical fiction, and there's no getting away.

Crosspost: http://silverflight8.dreamwidth.org/133263.html.


( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 30th, 2013 10:00 am (UTC)
noo, why would you ever sing that song at karaoke? the music video is like 7 minutes long and the song is only 4. it's an utterly ineffective use of the time you buy!!!!

(it's so emotionally-manipulative... >.>)
Jun. 30th, 2013 04:01 pm (UTC)
Oh, well there was only four of us and the room was about $40 from 3:00-8:30pm. It didn't matter if you stayed five minutes or five hours, so we had loooooooots of time. Though I definitely regret the three minutes I spent suffering through the emotional manipulation of the beginning.

Jun. 30th, 2013 01:33 pm (UTC)
That's a shame you had to ditch Wolf Hall; it's one of my very favourite books. There isn't any more of that, if it helps, his family is lovely once he grows up, they just need to set his past settings and let you know his father was not a nice person.
Jun. 30th, 2013 04:01 pm (UTC)
Hm, that's good to know. Maybe I'll pick it up again sometime; I really did hear a lot of good things about it.
Jun. 30th, 2013 03:43 pm (UTC)
my partner is lactose intolerant so i've converted to soymilk, which i mainly use to put in coffee. i really like it- it has kind of a nutty taste. and now i think putting milk in coffee tastes totally weird. i think it lasts longer, too. not so much a fan of almond milk or rice milk.

I couldn't get more than five pages past Hilary Mantel's Wolf Hall.

ME TOO! i think it had something to do with Mantel's writing style and use of the pronoun "he." when it's all men, i could never figure out who was talking and it felt really confusing to me. i want to give it another shot at some point when i have more patience. or perhaps am trapped on an airplane with nothing else to read...
Jun. 30th, 2013 05:20 pm (UTC)
Oh, interesting. I, er, never got used to the taste of soymilk (Mother: "You should drink a little", me: "Nooooooo"); I guess you just have to make the leap first :)

You can read on a plane?! I hate flying but all I want to do is become unconscious (preferably a long nap that lasts from take off to landing, haha) but I have no brain energy on a flight.

mezzogiorno says it's not as grim as I thought it'd be--I've become so tired of grimdark, which is why I ditched--so maybe I'll pick it up again.
Jun. 30th, 2013 05:23 pm (UTC)
Well there is grimness, it depends on what you like/don't like. There's very little child beating, but there are executions, plague, violence etc. The 16th century was a lovely place :)
Jun. 30th, 2013 10:34 pm (UTC)
Well it's really so much the actual actions that occur than the atmosphere, if that makes sense. For instance, one of the goriest books I've ever read is by Abercrombie (Best Served Cold) and it was like wall-to-wall torture and beating up and revenge, but I read through it as though it were nothing, because you get so desensitized; it's just descriptions of gore, and it got wearying, that's all. It wasn't handled very well, so to me it sounded like a macho listing off of what one character had done to another. The stuff that really freaks me out is atmospheric horror--like when the character himself is so afraid, when the whole world seems to be conspiring against them, when it's completely hopeless--kind of like how Shirley Jackson's Haunting of Hill House had nothing ever outwardly terribly frightening (what, paint on walls and knocking at doors?) but that absolute paralyzing fear that the protagonist feels, the uneasiness about the house among everyone staying there--that got to me.

It's also why I'm just not a fan of grimdark (the world sucks, so why should I keep reading?), but executions and sickness did happen and I don't think I mind that. Thanks! I'll definitely look for it then.
Jun. 30th, 2013 11:49 pm (UTC)
I really loved Empress! Sadly, the sequel is not very good (I thought).
Jul. 1st, 2013 06:50 pm (UTC)
Oh, good to know! I have an inkling that the novel may also start mashing certain buttons I have >.>
Jul. 1st, 2013 02:53 pm (UTC)

Mine too. And every time I de-clutter, it's like my brain sees the space I've cleared, and registers it as "ooh! room for MORE books!" I thought an e-reader would help; it does not.
Jul. 1st, 2013 07:14 pm (UTC)
Seconded. We'd just got used to having a few spaces in our shelves when... we bought ten books for £2 on Saturday. We knew it would end in creeping around the flat trying to squeeze and rearrange, and indeed it has...

As to the milk thing, I've had that with ham. I used to like it, then tolerate it, but now I can't stop thinking of it as having a very strong animal taste. It's completely irrational when I still like pepperoni and salami on my pizza, but I can't un-notice it.
Jul. 2nd, 2013 12:24 am (UTC)
Ahahaha, yeah. I don't buy books myself, but I have the worst habit of walking into a library intending to drop off books and get the heck out, and then coming home laden down with more books. I think to myself that I totally have time to read when I'm in the library--and isn't that the book you've been meaning to read for ages?--and so my shelves are perpetually full. As is my table, floor, etc.

Once you taste it I guess you can never un-taste it. (I've never been a fan of that liquid that comes out of packaged ham though. Cold, kind of weird...I go back and forth on ham.) Pepperoni and salami are pretty masked with spices though, maybe that helps.
Jul. 1st, 2013 10:40 pm (UTC)
Dropping off seven books at the library today. And omg my calibre library is no better--piles of books too, though fortunately epubs are very small when it comes to space. (Thank goodness.)
( 14 comments — Leave a comment )



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