Saturday, October 31, 2009

Halloween in bullet points

-sleep in
-drag self out of bed
-put on weird patchwork skirt, art nerd shirt and sparkly flower socks and run and do things on campus
-do homework with a couple reading breaks
-accidental nap
-don Queen of Attolia costume
-ward party at bowling alley
-trick-or-treating with former roomates
-abandon former roommates (candy just isn't worth it anymore)
-go to the wrong place for swing club
-look up correct place for swing club
-arrive at swing club
-dance with (among others) the Cookie Monster, Jack Skeleton, and the Dread Pirate Roberts
-leave early
-write LJ entry

Sunday, October 25, 2009


First I will say that, I have just now added a random quote generator to the side of my blog. Over on the left there, see it? The javascript and I had a bit of an argument over apostrophies, but it is there. I've been entertaining myself the last couple minutes by reloading the page over and over to see what quotes come up. There are more Lord Peter and Attolia quotes than anything else right now--whos surprised?--but I think I will add more quotes and it'll even out with time.

Now, on to the actual subject of this entry...

This Halloween season has started a week early, it seems. Since Halloween is a Saturday, people are scheduling parties a week ahead!

This year I decided to dress up as Attolia/Irene from The Thief, The Queen of Attolia and The King of Attolia by Megan Whalen Turner. (Yes, the title character of the second book.) Yes, I know that nobody else really knows who that is. But if I did something everyone else likes I wouldn't have had near as much fun putting my costume together, and really, my own entertainment was all I really cared about anyway.

I was asked to make a Rustic Apple Tart for the Illustration Association party. (They gave me the recipe.) Here is the finished product:

And now some costume pics.

Annilyn, Me, and Brooke:

Brooke, Me, Annilyn, and Caitlin:


Shadow Queen...

I was trying to figure out the 'stone face' look. And failing, but I was trying.

Gotta get a hair shot (even though Irene's hair is supposed to be black...)


Who am I that you should love me?

Happy primary-color-and-metallic embrioidered sheet-wearing cultural royalty:

Stern primary-color-and-metallic embrioidered sheet-wearing cultural royalty (I'd got in some practice by this time, so I really could do the Attolia Stone Face):

Monday, October 19, 2009

Books Read this summer

I was just glancing over old blog posts when I saw a post I'd completely forgotten about from last April, saying what books I thought I might want to pick up over the summer. I thought it might be interesting to say which of those I actually did read.

Of the rather long list of books I thought I might like to try reading over the summer, these are the ones I did actually read:

Jane Eyre
The Book Thief, by Marcus Zuzak I started but didn't finish. I did enjoy what I read of it and plan to finish when the Book Chooser Says To.
Dandelion Wine by Ray Bradbury
The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver is another I started but didn't finish--I really liked it, but then the library recalled it. *grumble* Annie brought back her copy for me to read the next time she went home, but by then I'd kind of lost my momentum with it, yanno? But this is another that I fully intend to finish reading in the future.
The Count of Monte Cristo, by Alexandre Dumas
Ben Hur by Lew Wallace I didn't actually read during the summer, but I did shortly after school started. Well, I listened to it anyway, which counts in my book.
Kenneth Oppel's Airborn books.
The Curse of Chalion by Lois McMaster Bujold
More Diana Wynne Jones--specifically The Game and re-reading the first and third volumes of the Chronicles of Chrestomanci... and maybe some other stuff that isn't coming to mind at the moment...
I didn't read The Looking Glass Wars by Frank Beddor, but I did listen to Through the Looking Glass, and the original should be even better, no?
I gave Game of Kings by Dorothy Dunnett another try--one of these days I'll be able to understand her prose. Maybe.
the Lord Peter Wimsey Books--oy my Lord Peter. I am so glad that I did pick these up... :D:D:D
The Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Emma Orczy--Karen Savage is my Hero

Not a bad list. Of course I read many other books this summer, but these are the books that I did end up reading that I had on my summer reading list. And probably nobody is interested in this but me, but ah well.

And NOW I shall go do homework. Actually, I'm going to have dinner first. And THEN homework.


Lately I've just been... less happy. I've been frustrated with classes and work and just kind of for no reason at all. I was feeling this rather acutely during my evening class tonight (Digital Painting). Not for any particular reason--I just was generally frustrated, for absolutely no good reason.

Leave class. Turn right instead of left when leaving HFAC. Enter Library.

And hour and a half passes.

Exit library, with a new spring in step and absurd grin on face.

Oh library, how I love thee.

I have previously demonstrated the greatness of my ode-writing skills (which is to say, non-skills) so I shall fall back on what others have said on this subject.

I have never known a trouble that an hour's reading would not dissipate.
-Charles Louis Montesquieu

Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accesible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers.
-Charles W. Eliot

When I am attacked by gloomy thoughts, nothing helps me so much as running to my books. They quickly absorb me and banish the clouds from my mind.
-Michel de Montaigne

I collected these quotes (and several others) from a quote book mom had on the table in the living room last time I was home. They are of course always true, but I didn't anticipate how very applicable they would soon be.

Friday, October 16, 2009

an odd thought

So I just had an odd thought while doing my Judaism reading, but it isn't a very complete one, if that makes sense. But it makes sense to me as far as it goes, and I rather feel like sharing it for a few reasons, the main one perhaps most easily said through the bromide of "two heads are better than one"--I'm interested in your thoughts on my Random Odd Thought.

As I said, this thought occured to me while I was doing reading for my Judaism and the Gospel class. How it came to me was this: I was reading an article which, in short, said "This is the way things were done". Then I got to the next section of the article, which was attempting to answer (or simply discussing the question of)--Why?

Why? All the way through the article up to that point I hadn't really thought to ask this question. What was being said made sense with what I knew and had read elsewhere, and the question of why things were that way hadn't really occured to me. In the back of my mind, almost far enough back that I didn't fully realize I was having this thought, came the words: Why (heh) didn't you ask why? The article seems to assume that readers should be asking this question. Almost before I realized I was asking myself this question, the answer arrived almost right on top of it. Because you're not a person who asks why. You're a person who asks how.

This answer is what brought the original mostly-subconcious train of thought to the front of my mind. But it made sense to me. Some people ask why--the most obvious group to point out would be scientists, or people who think like scientitsts. Instead, I ask how. This question is a bit less inquisitive and more active, it seems. Though the questions are really very similar--if you ask why something happens you will usually get a very similar answer to the question of how something happens--but its the feeling behind them that is different.

And then I was thinking, what if we all have our different questions? To some who? is more important, to others, why? where? what? when? or how?.

I rather liked this odd thought as it occured to me, but I also have this feeling that it...isn't complete. So I come to my blog readers. Do you have any thoughts on my thought?

(My computer crashed during the writing of this entry. My first frustrated thought wasn't, why did this happen? but rather how do I keep this from happening again?. And then I thought about it, and laughed to myeself.)

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

pet peeve

I can't really call it a Pet Peeve, because that is just something that kind of rubs you the wrong way, but doesn't really make you extremely angry.

Last week one of my roommates had one of her guy friends over. I talked with them a bit, and he seemed nice enough, though not exactly the type that I could really hit it off with, if you know what I mean. (Which is to say, he was very not nerdy.) So they continue chatting while I go over to my usual end of the couch with the lamp and start reading. He's kind of on his way out--they're gradually getting closer to the door while conversation continues--when they get on the subject of their aspirations, etc. and my roommate admitted that what she really wants to do is write for children.

"Oh," says her friend, "thats easy." He made a motion like he was just scribbling something really fast. "I mean, you just... you know?"

This is far from the first time someone has made a similar suggestion to/in front of me when someone admits to aspirations in childrens literature--either writing or illustration. Its hard for me to believe that they don't realize how utterly tactless, and of course wrong, they are. (How would you like me to say in a sort of brush-of way that your major sounds easy?) But what is also hard for me to believe is that, knowing how unthinking and common, etc., this thinking is, I still become, like, swellingly angry whenever someone makes this kind of comment. But, probably fortunately, I am not a person who yells, or even one who shows much emotion or says much of anything. So when my roommates friend says that writing childrens books is "easy", its only inside that I'm screaming,"EASY? Yeah, well you know what ELSE is EASY? JUMPING OFF A CLIFF IS EASY. So why don't you do the world a favor and go DO that. And be sure to aim for those SHARP ROCKS AT THE BOTTOM. And by the way I've decided to HATE YOU FOR ETERNITY." But while I'm thinking this, I'm still apparently calmly reading, though they probably never noticed that I've stopped moving my eyes over the page, or turning pages.

I waited for my mostly-suppressed explosion until after he was out the door, which was fortunately not long after.
"How can he not know how utterly tactless that was? Not to mention entirely wrong," I said.
"What was?" asked Annie, who had entered just as I said this. I told her what he said, and how this has happened to me several times before, and how it always makes me see red, but I never, ever say anything. So in a very small way it is my fault, for not correcting this thinking when I encounter it, right?
"Well, kind of," Annie said, "I'm not saying that that kind of thinking shouldn't be corrected, but really, I think it's better that you don't say anything when you're as angry as all that. And I know it's hard, but you should probably try to get used to the fact that you're going to keep encountering this kind of thinking and you should try and just let it roll over you, or you're going to keep getting angry about something you have no control over."
And of course she's right, but that doesn't make it any easier.