12 January 2011

Let Me Illuminate You, Reviewers...

Upon finishing Shane Jones' ever-so-surreal novel, Light Boxes, I was surprised it was so poorly reviewed.  I'm glad I was not dissuaded by these reviews when I started reading.  In fact, after finishing the novel, I let out a post-orgasmic sigh.  This is not to say that this work is pornographic (not in the least!), but it is such a sexy piece and I was sad to see its end (and thus went online to suss out more of his work).  Jones uses visceral and brightly layered images which transport the reader into an almost lucid dream-like meditative state.

What caught my attention most was the structuring of the "chapters" in creating voice among his assembly cast of characters.  Jones uses font sizing, breaks in pagination, bolded first lines simulating chapters, and negative space to introduce each character, rather than relying solely on dialect, tone and circumstance.  In fact, other than Caldor Clemens' speech, the characters (the children, Professor, February, et al) all use the same distancing voice and melancholic tone.  Before accusing Jones of being incapable of writing a varied voice, recall that February has reigned and raged over this town for several hundred days.  These morose voices are affected, or rather influenced, by the weighted umbrella of February's depressive state.

Perhaps its description as a novel leads reviewers to approach it rigidly, dogmatically. 'Light Boxes' reads  more as poetry than prose, or at least poetic prose.  I'm soothed by its lush description and (not always so subtle) lyricality.  I'm happy to have ignored the analytical droids feigning literary know-how.  And for the record, I have now decided to devote one of my limbs to some aspect of kite tattoos, kids twisting the heads of flightless owls, and a woman who smells of honey and smoke.

10 January 2011

I want to be bendy (again)

Last June I told myself it was time to really push my workout.  No matter what weight or size I've ever been, my thighs and booty have always lacked real muscle definition.  So I decided that doing twice as much twice as often would be the key.  I piled on the lunges, leg extensions, leg curls, step-ups on the ottoman, miles on the treadmill. 

Not even 2.5 weeks later, I couldn't walk up our stairs.

In fact, I couldn't fully bend nor fully straighten my left leg.  It was perpetually angled as if I was some show-pony prancing about.  To walk upstairs looked as if I were performing the marriage walk, only I had the banister to propel me up each step.

After 4 weeks of this, I finally went to my family doctor who then informed me that I had to make several appointments for the next 8 weeks with him before I could get an X-ray or see a physical therapist.  He said it was because of my insurance--an HMO (which we all know stands for Hesitant Medical Options).

After unnecessary appointments with a doctor who prescribes penicillin or naproxyn for everything (and also told me that I should be pregnant before seeking an ob/gyn should I ever want to have a child), I finally received authorization for an X-ray which came out clear and an MRI which showed inflammation behind the kneecap.  Two weeks after that, I was authorized for physical therapy.  Yay! But  I was only authorized for 6 sessions to be completed by mid-December, so they gave me a list of at-home exercises to work the muscles they believed were weakened and caused a tracking issue which created the inflammation and the knee pain.


It's January now.  It's been over 6 months since I have run on my treadmill and just as long since I have done yoga.  And I can feel its taxing grip on me.

I miss how yoga encouraged me to breathe easily, sleep soundfully (apparently I just made up that word), stop the mind clutter and simply examine.   But I still can't bend my knee enough to relax myself in child's pose.  I was once stable enough to perform standing balancing poses (my favorites) and these have been forsaken by my efforts to develop thighs with which I could juice oranges.

I think this summer's goal will not be showing off my chiseled flanks, but how gorgeous my knees look when sitting cross-legged or bent in child's pose.  You all will be jealous.

07 January 2011

Dear Mssrs. Subcontractors behind my house:

Hey, what was that really cool tool you used this morning?  You know, the  banging one with the rivety sounds that I thought was a gun, until I thought to myself that no one could possibly own an automatic machine gun in the mountains.  Maybe I didn't really hear it or it was just a little doe passing through my backyard.

And what is that awesome whirring I hear now?  The one that sounds like a screaming air compressor waiting to be used, or a generator shouting, "Hey!  I'm a loud machine!  Listen to me!  I am of purpose to this house!  And I am loud!  Isn't that great!?"

I wanted to say thank you for the eclectic music mix.  I thought I had heard enough Britney Spears and Pearl Jam in the 90s, but when you guys sing along, its like I FOUND GOD.  And I think the sun shone into my windowblinds at the exact moment one of you announced that it was break time and that you would be right back after you pooped.  I am so happy to hear that you are regular.

Keep up the good work,


Free Books?! It's like Christmas all over again!

Because of expired U.S. copyrights, over 30,000 e-books have been made free and accessible at Project Gutenberg.  The e-books are available in a variety of formats (HTML, simple text, etc) for computers and other portable computing devices.

Follow the link to access Project Gutenberg.  Happy reading!


New Year's Resolution:

Start a Blog.