Thursday, April 2, 2009

I get my news from the Internet because my local paper won't go under

I prefer the Internet for news because you can find longer form features, as newspapers once featured, and you can get news from different areas. I like to check up on the place where I used to live to see that I have made the right choice to move away!

I do worry that I am getting a little too much of the "Daily Me" - not getting news not catered to a liberal white Canadian girl who believes in medicare and free education. But it's better than reading the local newspaper, which hasn't predicted it's imminent death. I wish the Telegraph Journal weren't so stable - that's the double-edged sword of a paper owned by the Irvings. The news is kind of biased and the paper's too stable (talk about a financial backer!) to go under.

Friday, March 27, 2009

TV habit

So I finally jumped on the streaming TV thing and have been watching Nip/Tuck season 5 (or I was, until I ran out of sites streaming to Canada) and The Middleman.
The best moment of Nip/Tuck was in Dawn Budge II. I love Dawn Budge (played by Rosie O'Donnell) but the sight of her hang gliding to the soundtrack of Peter Bjorn & John's Young Folks was too much. I plotzed.
On the other hand, I don't like that it looks like Sean is going to get sucked in by his ex-wife's lesbian lover's teenaged sociopath. Predictable, much, Nip/Tuck?

As for The Middleman, it is awesome, way too awesome for ABC Family. I can understand how they didn't know what to do with this. In one episode, they use the expression drama vampire (for a friend who wants to wallow in your personal drama) and then one of the characters says Lord Love a Duck while another says, "Yippee kay yay BLEEEEEP."
It is madness. Where is season two? For that matter, why aren't they just making this continuously so I can watch it every week?

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

If teenage girls were all like Bella Swan, it would be 1708.

Or, Why I won't be letting my daughter read Twilight at 13.

I read the Twilight books. I actually read the first two before books three and four were even out. I was ahead of the curve on this one, since my husband's high school students gave him the heads up. So, as a favour to him, I read the books, which he duly stocked in his classroom. At least, he did the first two.
He may add the third to the collection. He will likely never add the fourth.
It's not just the sex (and if that was a spoiler for you, tough). It's the attitude towards sex.
That Stephanie Meyer treated sex as something that happens after marriage in the first two books was something cute and sweet. That sex (and marriage) becomes entangled in ideas of predestination, fate and inevitability, rather than just love, is a problem for me.
Take, for instance, the werewolves and their imprinting. The werewolf meets the right mate and the two fall in love, no matter what. Meyer, early on, in an unimportant character, introduces the idea that a werewolf, who will age slowly because of the change, will imprint on a baby, if that baby is the right person, and will duly maintain a protective, rather than romantic or sexual, relationship with the child until the child is of age.
There's something so sick wrapped in that harmless idea, that someone will love you your whole life, acting as an uncle or a close family friend might, and then taking that relationship somewhere else. Is it Mormon idea? I don't know. But I do know that I don't like it. I don't like the idea that girls will read this and think it's okay to try to cultivate a romantic relationship with an adult close to their family. Adults attempting inappropriately romantic relationship with family friend's children are abusers.
It's not my only issue, but Jacob imprinting on newborn (though growing fast) Renesmee, the vampire-human hybrid, is a definite problem for me.
Another problem is that Bella gets married and throws herself completely into her relationship with Edward, to the exclusion of our family and friends. Yes, it's because she's a vampire, but is that really an example we want our own teenage girls to have. This heady, romantic, sexual relationship, as typical in intensity as any first love/lust, is treated as something that can be taken as an excuse to escape, to become someone new. Putting all ones eggs in a basket - and the wrong basket at that. High school graduation does not make one an adult, and going to college is not a light experience that one can commit to half-heartedly.
In the end, I hate the be-all-and-end-all Meyer gives married life for Bella. It changes everything for her in irrepairable ways.
At least she hit that nail on the head.

This comic by Lucy Knisley sums up the ridiculousness of the books nicely. They are a black hole that sucks you in and it's nigh impossible to think critically of them while caught in their thrall. After, it's much easier to see that they have all the substance and nutritional value of a bag of chips, with the same quality that lures you to keep eating, without thinking.

Friday, March 20, 2009

If you're such a poet, twist your tongue and show it

I took a class at Dalhousie University in Creative Writing from Andrew Wainwright. Dr. Wainwright was a published poet and novelist, as well as a scholar of literature, particularly Canadian Literature. I'd already taken his CanLit class (and was thankful for the introduction to Tomson Highway's Kiss of the Fur Queen, one of my favourite books). One day, at the beginning of class, he pulled out the Globe and Mail's Review. It was probably a Monday since that's a Saturday edition thing. Anyway, on the cover was Coke Machine Glow, the recently published book of poems by The Tragically Hip's Gord Downie.
"To get on the cover of the Review as a poet, you have to be a rockstar. What does that say about culture in Canada?" Wainwright said.
I have never forgotten, ever, that I will never make the front page of a newspaper as a poet, unless I get to be a rockstar first.

By the way, I read Coke Machine Glow. It's okay. Downie writes better song lyrics. The poems come across as B-roll, stuff not good enough to make a song.

All that to get at this: I have a list of influential people in my life. I don't usually list it off, or make a big deal out of it. At the same time, I know who they are. Some of them know (or knew) who they are.
In the past year, two of them have died. Wainwright, as far as I know, is not one of them, though he did influence me quite a bit.
The first one to die was Malcolm Stone, the copyeditor at the paper where I worked when I was 21. Malcolm was the dirtiest old hipster you ever saw. He lived in a farmhouse, had no running water and made his living teaching bridge and correcting the grammar and spelling of his local community paper.
He was, in a way, my hero. He was a connoisseur of French fries, a lover of canned goods, and a gourmand in all the best ways. His New Yorker was a pleasure to be savoured, as was his weekly Wednesday copy of the New York Times (purchased solely for the food section). He loved to write headlines influenced by song lyrics.
I didn't know what to make of him at first, but once I got past the cigarette aura, I admired him. He was the ultimate freespirit.
I excelled at copyediting and I knew it was, in part, because I had been under the tutelage of a man who carried around a battered copy of the American Heritage dictionnary.

This week, my former boss died. A heart attack felled him in his office Monday morning. It would have been sunny, I think, and he may have just watered his plants. He would have already had his coffee. He always had his coffee ready first.
That's the one thing he and Malcolm had in common - they both liked coffee and drank more than I could ever manage.
Bernie hired me, with no real "finance" experience to be his assistant. I think it was because I claimed to know databases. I did know databases - it had just been a long time since I'd played around with one.
Bernie would give me a task and let me do it. I would come back and ask questions, but I normally figured it out. If I got frustrated (as I did when it came time to making the blank budget files work), he'd just ask me a couple of questions and send me back to work on it. I did get it eventually, and I felt good about what I had managed to do.
I felt like I could have been an accountant if I'd wanted, which is something for a girl who wanted nothing more than to be a journalist. See, I already had the word thing down pat.
Bernie's best quality, his most influential quality, was making you feel like you could do something if you put your mind to it. He treated everyone as capable. Some people said you had to go with a fully formulated plan of action, and it was true. If something needed to be done, you needed to know what. But once you knew what it was, Bernie was willing to let you figure out how to get there.
He was my boss at a time when I didn't know what I wanted to do, and I wish I could have kept working for him.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Review: American Widow

American Widow American Widow by Alissa Torres

My review

rating: 5 of 5 stars
This opened my eyes a little about the American Red Cross's role in providing relief to the families of those killed by 9/11. I thought Katrina's rigamorole was bad enough, but I heard little about this.

I often wonder, as a Canadian Red Cross volunteer, how effective we can be. The little bit we get from Alissa Torres's story doesn't lend me much hope.

View all my reviews.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Reasons I want to visit Japan

1. A day in Yoyogi Park (video is Peter, Bjorn & John's "Nothing to Worry About")
2. Ghibli Museum
3. Enlightenment Guaranteed (I so don't want to get lost, as these tourists do, but I am interested in learning about Zen and visiting a monastery)
And that's pretty much it. There are other things that don't appeal to me about going to Japan (the expense, how crowded the major centres are, the language barrier), but it's a pipe dream. It used to be New Zealand. Now I want to experience something really wild. I already went to Vegas. Now I want Japan.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Vaccines are better not stronger

I am still a little miffed I didn't correct that mother at Babies in the Library. She claimed vaccines are "so much stronger" these days.
The signs at Public Health, where I have to go for vaccines, beg to differ. They give the example of more efficient vaccines, improved by technology and a better understanding of how vaccines work. For instance, the diptheria-tetanus-pertussis vaccine today has 34 "germs" in it. The one I received in 1980 had 3017.
Obviously, I turned out okay.
The little dude just woke up from his post-shots nap. We'll see how he's doing. At worst, I expect a little bit of the cranky, with a touch of a fever. Oh, and a skin reaction on his leg, but that's his eczema at work. Will I be running to the doctor to complain about how my child's protection from diseases that could maim or kill him gave him a fever?
What kind of mother do you think I am?

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Review: Pierre Jean Jase, Sherbrooke, QC

On our trip to our former city of residence, and Bill's hometown, we headed out for burgers at Pierre Jean Jase (rue Montreal, Sherbrooke, QC). The restaurant was a semi-regular haunt while we lived in Sherbrooke. The menu is simple in the evening, with pizzas and some homey dishes regularly on the menu, and Tuesday to Friday nights, burgers and European hotdogs (sausages, really). We always get burgers. I always get the Montreal (the burgers and hotdogs are named for the streets surrounding the restaurant): veal burger with goat cheese and tomato. The Moore (beef with onions and mushrooms) is also popular among our friends. They also have a tofu option and a lamb option, with variations of toppings from brie to sundried tomatoes. All the burgers are served, en assiette with either salad, fries or a bit of both. The handcut shoestring fries come with mayonnaise. There are four options, but get the tarragon (estragon) for it is garlicky and delicious.
The reason I keep coming back to the Montreal is the way the creamy goat cheese, which has that almost musty flavour, blends with fresh tomatoes and the homemade mayo, which features lemon (or some other citrus - I never stop eating long enough to thoroughly investigate) peel.
Bill had the special on this visit - beef burger with apple and brie. Yummy. The special often comes with a draft beer (they have Boreale Rousse on tap) for a set price. This time, the tap was down so we had bottles of Boreale. Bill picked for the Blanche (peppery and refreshing) and I had the Cuivree. The Cuivree is a strong malt-based beer and, what I didn't down before my burger arrived was perfect with the citrus flavours of the mayo on my burger.
Pierre Jean Jase is a perfect cozy neighbourhood resto, great for a quiet dinner out or a weekend brunch. The brunch menu includes frittata, omelettes and French toast.

A review (in French) of Pierre Jean Jase.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Update on relationship quiz

I now hold the bigger brain in Big Brain Academy.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Review: Scott Pilgrim by Bryan Lee O'Malley

Scott Pilgrim, Vol. 1: Scott Pilgrim's Precious Little Life Scott Pilgrim, Vol. 1: Scott Pilgrim's Precious Little Life by Bryan Lee O'Malley

My review

rating: 4 of 5 stars
I avoided this series, despite enjoying Bryan Lee O'Malley's first book Lost at Sea. Scott Pilgrim is a weird romp through the relationships of early adulthood, with some hardcore geekery in the form of video game and manga references. The first time Scott Pilgrim fought and got a powerup, ala Mario, it took me a second, but the engaging characters and the almost too-familiar relationship action had me back before I could really put it down.

View all my reviews.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

I overheard a mom at Babies in the Library talking about how she's still skeptical about vaccines, even though she's vaccinating her kid. She said something about vaccines being stronger these days, about kids getting side effects, but she'd feel horrible if her kid came down with the measles or something worse.
Babble has a piece about how the anti-vaccine crap started and how it's all a big lie. An easy to believe lie, since it's easy to believe drug companies are evil. You know, since they often are.
I hope that parents smarten up and start vaccinating their kids again. I know that my co-worker with the autistic son blames his vaccinations. I think her son, nice kid that he is, just drew the short straw. And it sucks, but there's no point in telling other people their kid is autistic because of the protection from real dangers like measles, mumps and rubella.
It makes me so mad.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Review: Bones to Ashes

Bones to Ashes Bones to Ashes by Kathy Reichs

My review

rating: 3 of 5 stars
I'm leaning more towards a 3.5 stars. At any rate, I liked this one more than some of the other Kathy Reichs books I've read. To be honest, I think I like Bones better than I like the Temperance Brennan books.

This book hit closer to home than some of the others, and, as usual, Reichs makes some annoying geography booboos. It takes until much later to acknowledge that Miramichi, NB used to be two separate, smaller cities, Newcastle and Chatham. The only reference to Chatham is a one-off, without really explaining where it is.

The story was interesting, and, as usual, the plot, not the writing, carries the story. I'm getting quite sick of Brennan and Ryan having a non-romance. I am glad, however, that Reichs refers to it as Lafleur's in this book, instead of Lafleur as she did in the other books. She does throw off the Schwartz's full name, but whatever - it's nice to have a bit of the Montreal language dichotomy in there for colour.

View all my reviews.

Friday, February 20, 2009

That relationship quiz

What are your middle names?

Mine's Dawn, his is Donald.

How long have you been together?

Since July 2001 - 7 and a half years.

How long did you know each other before you started dating?

A couple of weeks? We met July 8, had our first date ten days later.

Who asked whom out?

He definitely asked me. And he had to ask more than once because the first time he asked, a few days after we first met, he kind of scared me since he showed up at the B&B where I was living for the summer and I hadn't told him I lived there. My boss told him where I lived.

How old are each of you?

I'm 28. He's 38.

Whose siblings do you see the most?

Surprisingly, right now, mine. My brother lives in Regina, but comes home relatively often. His brother lives in Montreal and we don't always see them when we visit Quebec. We used to see his brother much more often - almost once a month.

Which situation is the hardest on you as a couple?

Family relationships.

Did you go to the same school?

No. We went to school in different provinces, in very different systems.

Are you from the same hometown?

Not even close. He's from a small city in Quebec; I'm from a small city in New Brunswick.

Who is smarter?

I don't know. I'm better with numbers and with remembering how things work. My memory, in general, is better. We both write well. He teaches kids, which is not something I'm great at. I think we're pretty evenly matched in many ways. He is, however, holder of the bigger brain in Big Brain Academy.

Who is the most sensitive?

He is. I'm kind of... well... immune to many things that hurt the sensitive.

Where do you eat out most as a couple?

Opera Bistro, I guess. Though we often eat out at the Sampan, the nearest (and best) Chinese restaurant.

Where is the furthest you've traveled as a couple?

Las Vegas, which is where we were married.

Who has the craziest exes?

He does.

Who has the worst temper?

A lot of people would say me, but I blow my top in a spectacular manner only when I'm really, really pissed. Bill blows his top on a smaller scale over stuff that isn't worth the string of swear words, which means he blows his top several times a week.

Who does the cooking?

We both do.

Who is the neat-freak?

He is. Clutter bothers me, to a point, but he gets weirded out by a little bit of detrius on the floor and starts on about how Social Services is going to close us down (see above, re: temper).

Who is more stubborn?

I am. Hands down.

Who hogs the bed?

He does, but he'll never admit it. He also hogs the duvet, which makes me insane, but he won't acknowledge that he's the one who yanked it diagonnally, even though it's hanging off the side of the bed near his head.

Who wakes up earlier?

He does. But he has to go to work right now. And he likes to make it sound like I sleep in and lie about in bed, but I get up at 7:30 almost every morning.

Where was your first date?

At Pizzicato in Sherbrooke. He learned I was lactose-intolerant that night.

Who is more jealous?

He is. I don't stress about that stuff.

How long did it take you to get serious?

Not long. We did the long distance thing from September to May, that first year, then I moved in with him. He asked me to marry him around about our first anniversary.

Who eats more?

He does. But really, I can put him under the table easily when it comes to certain foods.

Who does the laundry?

We both do, due to a division of labour after I freaked when he shrunk a brand new sweater beyond recognition. He tried to lay the blame on me leaving it on the laundry basket with other clothes. I said that if he can't read the labels on clothes, it's his own problem. Hence, he does his own laundry and I do mine. We split the kids, but I tend to do the baby's more.

Who's better with the computer?

I am. But I grew up in a house full of computer geeks and learned print production at school.

Who drives when you are together?

He does, usually, though we split on trips. And I have been known to yell at him for telling me he's too tired/dizzy/not feeling it after he's already behind the wheel.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Creating arrows for God

Babble has a really interesting article on the Quiverfull movement.

That's a broad enough standard to allow for various interpretations, including mainstream beliefs that children should help out in the family and not expect to always have their way. In the Quiverfull movement, which graduates new believers from accepting many children to a deeper study of movement literature about women's submission to the headship of the fathers and husbands, it often becomes a lifestyle of rigid hierarchy and duty. Many women who have left the movement say that the experience of Quiverfull daughters is to learn early that their role is limited to the domestic and that their highest calling is in becoming mothers and wives. It can be a life of crushing toil, as former Quiverfull believer Cheryl Lindsey Seelhoff explains. "The Quiverfull movement holds up as examples men like the Duggars . . . all men of means. But for every family like this, there are ten or fifty or one hundred Quiverfull families living in what most would consider to be poverty.... Mothers are in a constant cycle, often, of pregnancy, breastfeeding, and the care of toddlers."

I didn't like the idea of this before. This article leaves me aching for little girls raised this way. My own great-grandparents had 14, though they had only 3 girls. All three, Mabel (who was fourth oldest), Bernice (#6) and Grace (#14), were expected to help. My great-grandparents kept all three girls out of school as much as possible, and all three girls ran off and got married at 16 to escape, and each had at least five kids of her own.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Review: Valentine's Day Dinner at Opera Bistro

My husband and I went to dinner at Opera Bistro. I'll admit, it's a favourite anyway, but the five course fixed menu for February 14 was excellent.
We started with Goat Cheese Brioche, which were subtlely cheesy and had Bill swooning right away. This arrived with our drinks - Banrock Station Sparkling Shiraz. I am now in love with sparkling red wine. It was a little sweet, pleasingly bubbly and light enough not to be a problem with the romantic salad: mixed greens with avocado and bamboo shoots with a lobster rice vinaigrette.
Next was the Cognac Carrot Cream Soup, which was velvety and light. It tasted mostly of cream and cognac, with a nice bit of sweetness from the carrot.
Then the salmon pate arrived - salmon layered with rice, vegetables and herbs (what anything was, I could not say), baked in puff pastry and served with a saffron cream. Delicious. I could have just eaten that for dinner. But then I would have missed the main course.
Bill had the filet mignon, which came in a shitake mushroom sauce on sour cream whipped potatoes. Bill had his medium, and it was tender and smoky. As usual, I won the draw on picking the better dinner. I had the sausage stuffed chicken roulade, which was presented in a pomegranate balsamic sauce with a polenta heart. The sausage, likely one of their homemade lamb ones (they were so busy that I couldn't ask), was spicy, and nicely balanced by the chicken and the sauce, which was sweet-tart. The polenta heart was a nice touch - I love polenta anyway, and this was crisp outside and creamy inside, the perfect textural compliment to the chicken and sausage. The chicken came with just one bone still attached. I'm not sure what bone, though, since my chicken was definitely a breast and the bone was a good sized one. I almost thought she'd brought me a lamb chop by accident (and there was lamb on the menu, a rack with black cherry and black pepper - I saw one on the next table and it looked delicious). I was expecting a roulade - you know, the typical rolled chicken. This was better.
Desert was a white chocolate mousse heart on a lake of dark chocolate sauce. Opera is my favourite place to eat desert anyway (a raspberry tart I had three years ago still makes me drool), and this didn't disappoint - the presentation alone was fabulous. The airy mousse was topped with a thin layer of red strawberry gelatin. Hidden in the desert were a few fresh berries - raspberries and blueberries.
Surprisingly, after all of this, I didn't feel like exploding. It was perfect!

Monday, February 9, 2009

RIP Blossom Dearie

I am beyond sad I will never get to see her sing live, even at 82.

Review: Gods Behaving Badly

Gods Behaving Badly: A Novel Gods Behaving Badly: A Novel by Marie Phillips

My review

rating: 5 of 5 stars
I kept hearing about this book on CBC and everyone loved it. That is because it is awesome. The Olympians are all perfectly developed and the mortal characters are sweet and you just want to kiss poor Neil by the end of it. It's David Sedaris meets Queen Camilla. Awesome.

View all my reviews.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Chocolate chip cookies

I've made "the perfect chocolate chip cookie" - from the New York Times. I've also made these chocolate chip cookies from Martha Stewart.

There is a pretty big difference. For one thing, the New York Times cookies come out heftier. They taste richer (I think it's the refridgeration). There's the added dimension of salt.

My next batch of the Martha Stewart cookies, which are just simpler to make, I'm going to try two things - first, I'm going to try hold off baking for at least 36 hours. Then, I'm going to sprinkle them with sea salt. Taste test, ho.

Review: Superior Saturday

Superior Saturday (The Keys To The Kingdom, Book 6) Superior Saturday by Garth Nix

My review

rating: 5 of 5 stars
I cannot wait for Lord Sunday. I like how far along this book carries the story, but it really felt like nothing actually happened - no conclusion. A true build up for the coming ending. Maybe. Maybe there's a book 8 in the works. I wouldn't complain - it feels like Garth Nix has a lot to say about the Architect, more than might be reasonable to handle in the seventh book of The Keys to the Kingdom.

View all my reviews.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Atheism and me

Here's the thing: I was raised an atheist.
My parents are reasonable people. My dad was raised a Catholic. When Vatican II came in when he was in his early twenties, he actually understood what the priests were saying for the first time. And that was enough for him. My mom was the "sinner" her friends took to church on "Take a Sinner Sunday." While she attended a variety of churches growing up, none of them stuck.
I think my parents raised my brother and I with a pretty strict moral code, much of it centred around the idea of "Judge not lest ye be judged." Because what gives one person the right to judge who you are and what you do? If it's not the legal system, you should probably keep your mouth shut.
I didn't have to reject a church or a system of beliefs to get to where I am today. It is well-documented that I was a know-it-all 14-year-old who caught on to the fact that believing that your own religion is the only right one leads to a world of trouble.
At the same time, had I decided to join a church or hold a certain system of beliefs as an adult, I know my parents, as long as I didn't try to recruit them, would have been accepting of that.
So here, at 28, is the code I follow:
1. Everyone's beliefs are legitimate.
2. That said, I don't have to tolerate people who force their beliefs on me.
3. There's a right and a wrong and a bunch of shades of grey in between and you can trust the majority of people to inherently understand that.
4. That said, people's understanding of right and wrong can be clouded by many things, including religion.
5. There's not much point in arguing with people about their faith.
6. I will raise my own children to be open-minded to all faiths and creeds. If they want to follow a particular one, I will accepting of that.
7. I will speak out against the dangers of fundamentalism when confronted with it.
8. I will not become a fundamentalist myself, therefore I will not go around preaching about the lack of a god. I will debate when engaged, but I will try not to rage. Though I will rage when talking things over with likeminded people (ie, my parents).
9. I do believe that there is something in the universe that is amazing - that so many small factors, from environment to evolution to sheer survival instinct (not only of humans, but of every species on Earth) brought us to where we are today. I do not believe there was a grand order to things, outside the natural order.

I heard Stuart A. Kaufmann on the radio before Christmas, talking about this. I felt like he was saying what I'd been feeling for years. He wrote Reinventing The Sacred: A New View of Science, Reason and Religion.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Review: Things the Grandchildren Should Know

Things the Grandchildren Should Know Things the Grandchildren Should Know by Mark Oliver Everett

My review

rating: 5 of 5 stars
I loved Eels the first time I heard Novocaine for the Soul on MuchMusic. I was 16, and the lyrics spoke to me. I needed something for my soul so very much - I was an angsty teen after all. The album Beautiful Freak went on to become a soundtrack to my high school days and the subsequent albums all have ties to moments in my life, from my first dorm room to car trips with my husband and daughter.

This book is what was going on with the man behind the music and it is a beautiful tale of a weird and wonderful like where the downs (and there are many) are only surpassed by the ups. Mark Oliver Everett tells it like it is (and was).

My favourite passage in the book? "It lasted five or six years. In the end, it didn't work out. But, after all, this is Chapter 13. What did you expect?"

A necessity for reading is a complete soundtrack of E and Eels albums, as well as some other tracks, including Happy Trails (so you can hear it as he leaves his mother's funeral, even if he didn't get to), an Elliott Smith track of your choice (something from his dark period, preferably), some Tom Waits and some Neil Young. Maybe John Lennon's Plastic Ono Band album, if you can handle it.

View all my reviews.

Review: The Art of Racing in the Rain

The Art of Racing in the Rain The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein

My review

rating: 4 of 5 stars
I thought I'd have a hard time getting around the dog as narrator, but I really enjoyed the outside perspective on the lives of his master and family. I didn't need the final chapter, which I won't reveal since it's a total spoiler, but it didn't ruin the book as epilogues by a certain New Hampshire based novelist do for me.

View all my reviews.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Bleeding Hearts