Saturday, October 20, 2007

Everyone goes south every now and then

Howdy, y'all.

No, I'm not dead, everything's fine. I just took a little blog break, that's all. I went through a month or so of thinking, "I really should post soon, it's been awhile" and then another month or so of thinking, "I'd better come up with something really good to post about to break this long silence, to somehow justify my continued absence from the web," and then the pressure (admittedly self-imposed) was too much and I didn't think about it at all.

So now I just thought, "Fuck it, Caroline, just write whatever, jeez. It's only a blog."

So here I am. We are all fine, Nolan's good, KB's good (Happy Birthday tomorrow, Sweetie!), I'm good, Princeton's good.

Things I have discovered in the past two months:

The ocean is a force to be respected.

Skinny jeans are not a trend I want to have anything to do with.

I'm much happier when I don't have to drive, but if we do go somewhere in a car, I wanna be the one driving. I have control issues.

You don't have to be a good gardener to grow good tomatoes.

Watching birds is really quite peaceful and relaxing.

Every home should have a musical instrument or two.

Sometimes it is better to want something but not to get it (a material item, that is, not something like world peace or a cure for cancer.) It keeps you craving and alive. Ditto for being hungry. It's okay to let yourself get hungry every once in a while. You appreciate your food more.

Books I have read in the last two months:

"What is the What: The Autobiography of Valentino Achak Deng" by Dave Eggers - Powerful, grueling, humbling and inspirational.

"Eat, Pray, Love" by Elizabeth Gilbert - Fun and funny, but quite possibly the worst possible book to read after "What is the What" - they are so different; even though both are ostensibly non-fiction, they take place in totally different universes.

"The Book of the Dead" and "The Wheel of Darkness" by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child - I used to love these guys; I read "Relic" in one sitting, but lately it seems like they just have a formula and they plug in the old reliable characters, add a dash of supernatural intrigue, and then half-bake the results. Don't know if they're worth my time anymore.

"The Big Girls" by Susanna Moore - I felt the same way I did about "In The Cut" - bleak and thrilling and like nothing else I've ever read.

"The Echo Maker" by Richard Powers - Picked this one up totally at random at the library and got lucky - an interesting amalgam of medical procedural and meditation on the meaning of identity.

"Bad Monkeys" by Matt Ruff - Fun and silly thriller, right up until the final one-twist-beyond ending, when I lost my patience.

"Midwives" and "The Double Bind" by Chris Bohjalian - Eh. Maybe I read them too fast, but I saw the ending coming a mile away in "Bind" and didn't care much one way or the other with "Midwives."

"On Chesil Beach" by Ian McEwan - Engaging and typical of McEwan, in that he allows his exploration of the innermost thoughts of the characters to comprise the entire story ("novel" is too generous a word for this one), but c'mon: a Booker-prize nominated book about premature ejaculation? Thank goodness it didn't win.

"The Yiddish Policeman's Union" by Michael Chabon - Very good, but not as good as Kavalier and Clay. Again, I suspect I may have read this one too fast.

Movies I have seen in the last two months:

"Michael Clayton" by Tony Gilroy - Amazing and well-written, going to have to see it again. And find the screenplay. So nice not to be condescended to at the movies.

"Elizabeth: The Golden Age" by Shekhar Kapur - Fun costume drama/soap opera. A real "movie" movie. Plus, Clive Owen in a puffy pirate shirt! Alalghalghaglaglllll...

"The Descent" by Neil Marshall - Started out sooo promising, then descended (pardon the pun) into typical schlock horror-gore. Disappointing.

"Raging Bull" by Martin Scorsese (yes, this was the first time I'd seen it) - Not really sure why this is considered such an awesome movie. Awesome acting, yes, but fairly pedestrian as bio-dramas go.

"Kiss Kiss Bang Bang" by Shane Black - Pure pulp. Very funny and arch - made me love Robert Downey, Jr. again.

"Hot Fuzz" by Edgar Wright - Not as good as "Shaun of the Dead," but still better than 90% of the straight buddy-cop movies out there. KB laughed his ass off.

"Miller's Crossing" by Joel and Ethan Coen - Excellent, excellent, excellent.

"Richard III" by Richard Loncraine - Interesting adaptation. Ian McKellen kicks ass, of course, but not as revolutionary as I would have thought.

"Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead" by Tom Stoppard (had to make KB watch it) - One of my all-time favorites. Every time I watch it I see new things to love.

"Coffee and Cigarettes" by Jim Jarmusch - Uneven but ambitious. Some of the scenes/skits made me think, "Why am I wasting precious free time watching this?" and I almost shut it off, something I rarely do, but I stuck with it and there were some worthwhile and funny bits, too.

So. Yeah. That's what I've been up to.

That and looking at real estate porn. Never in a million years would we be able to afford that house, not even when (if) KB makes partner and is making the "big bucks," but I love looking at it. I (heart) that house.

How are you?

Thanks for reading.


Electric Mayhem said...

This is perfect. What a great entry. More blog posts should be like this, including mine.

Zach said...

Hooray! It's good to have you back!

Also, I'm sort of in awe of your reading list... I haven't read that many books in two years, let alone two months. I'm wasting my life!

Anyway, welcome back. We (I) missed you!