Saturday, April 28, 2007

Potter on the brain

So, I just read a headline over at It said, "Mugger injures ex-Senator Braun."

I could have sworn it read, "Muggle injures ex-Senator Braun."

Friday, April 27, 2007

murder for jesus

Before I begin, please see this post, footnote one, for a disclaimer that puts to rest any ideas that I am bashing baptists.

That said, why did the SBC elect a guy as second VP who signed a "Declaration of Support for James Kopp," the guy who murdered an obstetrician while he was in his kitchen talking with his wife and child? He is also suspected of four other physician murders. The Army of God website that hosts the declaration also pledges support for other murderers of "abortion doctors."

Anyway, among the signatures is that of Wiley Drake who was elected last June to be the Second Vice President of the Southern Baptist Convention. Added to his signature is the comment: "The price of blood is high. Some will pay high, and some will pay low, but pay, we all will for the 40 million babies we have killed. God bless you my brother as you serve Him, and His little ones." This, in a not quite literal but true to the spirit translation, reads: Murder for Jesus.

Now, I don't think that most or even many SBCers think that killing an obstetrician or gynecologist who you suspect performs abortions is justifiable, much less a part of the service of God "and His little ones." And I don't think that people necessarily knew that Drake was crazy when they elected him. In fact, if SBC elections are like most associational and organizational elections, after the "president" ballot is cast, no one really knows or cares much about the candidates for lower office, much less "second vice president."

But this seems like an issue on which SBCers, rank and file and leadership alike, should be speaking out. If they can speak out against abortion, which they see as senseless murder, then they probably should be speaking out against the open support of senseless murder. Not only senseless murder, but murder that they claim to have done in the name of God. Now, I don't think they will. Mostly because the story won't get enough traction to cause them to suffer from PR problems if they don't. But, sometimes there's something to be said for doing the right thing, just because it's the right thing to do.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

So, I'm sort of working on this paper and sort of watching MSNBC's analysis of the debate

And I have one question: when did Joe Scarborough convert? When was his consciousness raised? He's making me super-happy. He's the one pressing the issue of two Americas, of racial inequality, etc. Wow.

Ominous fortune cookies

So, I'm mostly broke. I'm using money I put on my CatCard to eat on campus rather than buying groceries. Now, it's perfectly possible to eat healthily on campus. But the Panda Express is really close to where I live. So for the past two nights I have had dinner consisting of chow mien, spring rolls, and a fortune cookie. Not very healthy, but such is life and poverty. Anyway, every time I open a fortune cookie, I specify what it refers to. You know the old game where you take the fortune cookie quote and add "in bed" to the end of it? Well, this is kind of like that.

So, the past two evenings I've been working on this methods/social movements paper and I've said that my cookie is in the context of this paper and the presentations/discussions I have to do of it. Last night, when I was thinking I wouldn't finish stuff in time, it said something like "A delay is always better than a disaster." Well, tonight, while I'm thinking about presentation issues, the cookie says, "Keep your plans secret for now." Hmm...

Democratic candidate debate

It's on NOW. I found it by randomly flipping through channels. How did I miss this?

Edit, 4:29: Mike Gravel is awesome. Dude cracks me up.
Edit, 4:31: man, Edwards really is attractive. Guess that $400 haircut worked out well.
Edit, 4:51: seriously, love that Gravel guy
Edit, 4:54: It's all politics, and I'm not naive; I know this is all an act. But, I think I'd really like to hang out and talk with all these candidates. Except Chris Dodd. He seems just a little too slimy and political.
Edit, 4:57: Q: What's the first thing you would do on the first day of office? Bill Richardson: "First day, I'd get us out of Iraq." lol. Sorry, Bill, you're not God (e.g., "let there be light," etc.).

Visual DNA

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

You won't find this story in the Baptist Press*

The Baptist Press is, of course, the newspaper of the Southern Baptist Convention. Via Mainstream Baptists.

You know I'm not a fan of Bill Clinton,** but this exchange made me happy. Mostly because it disproves stereotypes about Democrats/people on the left generally and because I would like to hear, say, Pat Robertson*** respond to this.
Yeltsin leaned over to him and asked, "You're a Christian, aren't you?"

"Yes," President Clinton answered. "My faith is the most important thing in my life."

"Well, I have to do something about all these Christians coming to Russia. They are ruining our country. Everyone is becoming a new Christian, a born-again Christian, and they are being rebaptized and putting crosses around their necks. It is ruining our country's culture."

President Clinton told me he looked at Yeltsin and said, "Democracy doesn't work that way. Either you're free or you're not. You can't have it both ways. You need to allow Christians the freedom to come into your country and preach and teach, and you have to allow the Russian people the freedom to choose their faith."
*Obviously, I am not trying to bash on Baptists. I love Baptists. I am Baptist. I love the principles inherent in the Baptist tradition. Sadly, I fear that the SBC has gotten away from. See, e.g., The Baptist Faith and Message, which they argue is not a creed (the Baptist tradition is deeply non-creedal; in fact, that's kind of one of it's defining features), but which SBC appointees, professors, and missionaries have to agree to in order to serve. Sounds like a creed to me.

**I hate having to always harp on this, but I hate to be thought of as conservative: I'm not a fan of BC because he is too moderate tor me. Not because he was too liberal or because he got a blowjob from Monica Lewinsky. Increasingly, however, I am noticing how smart he is, even if I don't always agree with him policy-wise. He is kind of brilliant, at least politically. My point: I am liberal to radical, politically.****

***Pat Robertson is one of my favorite people. Batshit crazy, but I love him. He, however, as head of the ACLJ and CBN and the Christian Coalition constantly links his faith to his politics (which I believe is a good thing in principle!), and does it in narrow ways in which Republicans-who-do-what-he-wants-them-to = God's chosen leaders and Any-Democrat-no-matter-what-but-especially-Bill-Clinton-and-those-related-to-him = Tools of Satan.

****I feel like I am becoming more moderate. That, of course, is relative. I am considerably more liberal than most of the population and probably always will be. But since coming to grad school my politics have mellowed out. It could be driven by current events, e.g., regular ol' Democrats don't seem so bad by comparison to what we've got, and I'm thinking more pragmatically than idealistically about how to change the situation. Or it may be that I have fewer classes dealing with inequality and other politically loaded issues, so politics simply isn't is salient in my everyday life as it has been for the past four years. It's probably some combination of both.

Monday, April 23, 2007

in control

I'm starting to feel slightly more in control of the rest of my semester. For a while there, it was all spiraling out in a hectic whirl. But after a day of more reading and thinking about this social movements/research methods paper, I feel more confident about where it's going. Sure, that's probably a good month behind where I ought to be, but it's progress. Things seem slightly more manageable now. I just have to not think about statistics at all.

I need a title.

Not for this post, but for the paper that I just finished, proofreading and all! All that's missing is a title. Just as I tend to spend too much of my time when creating PowerPoint presentations on finding the right pictures, a disproportionate amount of my paper-writing time is spent coming up with a title. Preferably, it should balance on the fine line between witty and corny. Too often, I'm afraid it strays into corny territory. But, hey, I'd rather something silly than "Application Paper #3."

Six hours and twenty YouTube videos later...

I am finished with my methods application paper. It's not good, but I've decided not to particularly care. I reverted to my old writing method which, concisely, is: write a page, take a break, write a page, take a break, and so on. Sometimes it devolves into write a paragraph, take a break that takes twice as long as the time you spent on the paragraph, etc.

Anyway, my paper still needs a conclusion. But I'm quitting it for the night.

I've been watching Harry Potter music videos on YouTube. It's quite sad.

Anyway, I thought I'd share. The first, along with others, has convinced me to ship Snape/Lily. I am, of late, becoming especially fascinated with Snape. And I am happy that we're bound to get more backstory on him in book 7! I don't know to what extent I believe that there will be, in canon, an actual Snape/Lily story, but I think that nothing rules it out at the moment, and it could potentially explain a lot.

This next one combines three obsessions: Harry Potter, Remus/Sirius shipping, and Sims2. This video is absolutely brilliant. The Hogwarts setting is wonderful. I've come to peace with Remus/Tonks shippers. I, in fact, am one now. And not just because it's actually canon. I don't think Remus having had a relationship with Sirius rules out his having a relationship with Tonks. Sirius is... dead... or something like that.

Edited, 2:58am, to add another video. I just can't stop watching! I need to get to bed. I have class in the morning. This combines more loves, Remus Lupin and RENT.

Perhaps later I'll share some of the truly brilliant Remus/Sirius stuff out there on YouTube. I remember them from back in the day, but am too tired at the moment to try to dig them up.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

I'm torn

I'm watching the White House Correspondent's Association Dinner on CSPAN. I'm torn between being sucked into the whole thing, squeeing with delight at catching sights of Supreme Court justices, favorite reporters, and loved/hated politicians and changing the channel with disgust at the self-congratulatory fraternization between the administration and people who are supposed to think critically about them and question and be skeptical.

I think I'll split the difference, meaning: I will watch it and complain to you, my readers.

Edits, liveblogging it:
  • Did Tony Snow just reference the "heart and decency and soul of the people in this town"? I didn't know he was pulling a parody a la Stephen Colbert.
  • Letterman is showing a "Top 10 favorite GWB moments." They're not too funny. Just verbal and physical mishaps.
  • Oh wonderful. They're all toasting and cheering for the president. Isn't that what they do everyday in their respective media outlets?
  • GWB has "decided not to be funny," in response to the VA Tech tragedy. Fair enough.
  • I just bet this Rich Little guy is not near as funny as Stephen Colbert. "I'm not a political satirist.... I'm a nightclub entertainer." Great.
  • His McCain impression is... well, it's not McCain.
  • And it, substantively, is not funny.
  • wtf
  • His Ahh-nold voice isn't so bad. But, again, substantively, not all that funny.
  • At this point, like 5 minutes in, I kind of want to punch him in the face.
  • He's doing a reasonable impersonation of Andy Rooney, but it seems like he should be being more political.
  • He is just going to keep doing random impressions?
  • He's... singing.
  • Reagan: ???
  • At least the audience isn't laughing, either.
  • He's singing again. The exact same song. Is he going to sing this between every one of his impressions? Jimmy Carter is up next.
  • Well, he said Jimmy Carter was up next, but I don't know who this guy he's doing is....
  • Yes, apparently, he's doing the song in between each one. "Sing a little song all about the throng in Washington, tell a little joke, and we're gonna poke a lotta fun. Poke a lot of fun at Wash-ing-ton!"
  • Wow. Bush 1 is good, visually and audibly. Bill Clinton, not so great. Actually, I can't distinguish him from Little's "Jimmy Carter."
  • Song-time again! Now time for GWB.
  • Yeah, I think Jon Stewart does a better GWB than Rich Little. And I hate Jon Stewart's impressions.
  • "Mr. binLaden, please take a note, please take a moment from humping that goat."
  • Song! Nixon!
  • I'll be honest with you, I've stopped paying attention. He's been doing Nixon for about 8 minutes or so now. I'm reading mugglenet.
  • Oh, wait, is Little!Nixon singing? And crying?
  • This is just sad and hard to watch.
  • Seriously, that's it? "If I made you laugh or smile the last half hour, it was all worthwhile." Well, then it sure was a waste of my time.
In case you need to be happily reminded of better days for the WHCAD, watch Stephen Colbert's performance last year here. I would embed the video, but I can't find it on Youtube, CSPAN must have requested it to be taken down. That link is to Google Video.

Why oh why have I started napping on Friday afternoons?

Now I can't get to sleep and my whole weekend will be messed up.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

selective, self-protective amnesia

Man, high level government service is apparently bad for the memory.

the writing in the dust

So, several times in the past I have put sticky notes on cars with bumper stickers I either loved to death or vehemently disagreed with. I figured that if they get to use their right to send a message to me the viewer, it's only fair that I get to speak back.* Anyway, I've got an exciting bumper sticker in my window, and a few times people have stopped me in parking lots to tell me that they appreciated it. But no one has ever left me a message. But today, written in the dust of the desperately-in-need-of-a-cleaning car, was a reply to my sticker. My sticker says, "God is not a Republican... or a Democrat." And underneath it was written, "you must be a Democrat." I'm not**, but clearly this person didn't like the sticker. But I loved that they responded. A sticky note would've been ever better.

*"Several" might be an exaggeration. I've done this 2-3 times in my life.
**Though I am certainly not a Republican, either!! And before you go getting any ideas about me being some sort of a moderate, that's not true either. I'm an Independent, but not the kind John McCain wants to go after. I'm actually quite radical, politically.

academic crush

For the second time this week, one of my academic crushes is on television. Katherine Newman is on Lou Dobbs right now talking about something to do with Virginia Tech.

Edit, 3:55pm, Lou Dobbs: "We need to do better than a bunch of sociologists sitting around saying this is a complicated and complex issue."

instruments of peace

Blinding light assaults the darkness;
Children wait for guns to cease.
In the midst of war’s confusion,
Make us instruments of peace.

Hungry for your visitation,
We are waiting –

You alone,
O God,
can save us.
Heal the wounds that we have made.

-Jean McMullan
Written the morning after the war erupted on the Persian Gulf.

via God's Politics

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

sadness, anger, and responsibility

As I have done nearly incessantly since Monday, I've been watching news coverage of the tragedy at Virginia Tech. I just saw a replay of President Bush's speech at one of the memorial services. I watched many of the other speakers and was moved to tears and prayer for the community. But hearing Bush speak just pissed me off.

I have little doubt that his feelings of grief are genuine. I'm sure his heart is, as he says, full of sadness. But it seems somewhat hypocritical, not only for him, but for all of us, to get terribly upset about this terribly upsetting event, yet not to get upset about other world events which result in greater tragedies (if tragedies can be measured in numbers of lives lost). If anything, perhaps we should be feeling worse about, say, Iraq, because we theoretically could have prevented it. We, the people, the media, the Congress, didn't question. I realize that hindsight is 20/20, but even after it began and the lies came out, we've done nothing to stop it and little to even protest it. I suspect this is because we have no draft and the people most biographically available to protest (i.e., college students) face fairly little risk that their personal lives will be affected.

So, today, four bomb attacks in Baghdad killed 183 people. Where are the prayers and the vigils and the memorials (and perhaps the protests) on their behalf? I realize that, psychologically, the deaths of innocents across the world and during a war is less emotionally charged than the senseless death of innocents with whom we identify. It makes sense. Psychological explanations also get at why shooting deaths are bigger stories than airplane crash deaths. Some deaths are more "tragic" than others in the public imagination.

I understand these processes and that's why I'm not as angry with the public generally as I might be. I am part of that public. I see news coverage of the deaths of Iraqis and American soldiers every day, and while I feel sad and angry, rarely do I break down and cry as I have done numerous times over the past few days.

But I am angry when I see Bush up there. Because he (and others in power), much more so than we, the people, had a direct hand in Iraq. Why does he not go on national television every day and ask us to pray for those killed in this war? A loss life equivalent to several VA Techs occurs every day in Iraq.

Edit, 9:31pm: So, I just got a call from someone who thought I was perhaps underplaying the tragedy at VT in order to make war analogies. His point was that though Iraq and VT are both tragedies in their loss of life, there is a fundamental difference when it comes to the motives and that perhaps that can explain our different expressions of grief for the two events. Even though Bush et. al may have lied to us about Iraq, it wasn't done of out bloodlust, it was done out of greed for power, influence, or money. And, thus, this reaction to the senseless killing is understandably greater because we're looking in the face of pure evil rather than looking in the face of greed and gross incompetence.

I think that that is definitely part of what's going on... the motives matter. Very few people think GWB rejoices in the deaths of Americans or Iraqis. But my point is that motives don't dim the tragedy. And my narrower point, the spur for this post though I certainly got off track in it, is that it's particularly hypocritical for GWB to be up there. He has not gone to a single military funeral. He has not allowed pictures of returning caskets. He is carefully keeping the American people from getting a picture of the true tragedy of war, regardless of how we got in there.

If we're going to say that we as a culture value life, there are some hard facts we need to face up to. We should absolutely be mourning this tragedy in Virginia. We should be thinking about how it could be prevented in the future and what that might mean for public policy. We should be praying and sending good thoughts. But we should also be thinking about Iraq. And Darfur. And human trafficking. We should not only be praying we should be acting. We should be writing, to others and to officials, we should be in the streets. We should be thinking about moral obligations, public responsibility, and private actions. Sadness and anger are generally not very useful unless they come with mobilization and a determination to change. That's our responsibility.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

sometimes procrastination pays

I decided to take a break from the paper(s) I'm running way behind on to watch The Daily Show and The Colbert Report. Colbert just started and he said his guest tonight is Elaine Pagels, Professor of Religion at Princeton and author of The Origin of Satan and Adam, Eve, and the Serpent! I love her. And to think, I'd've missed it if I were a responsible student. Ooh, I wonder if she has a new book coming out!

Edit, 11:49pm:
  • She looks nothing like I thought she would.
  • She does have a new book, about the Gospel of Judas.
  • "In the early Christian movement, there were groups that gathered around different apostles and told their stories."
  • How might this change our view of Jesus/Christianity? The early Christian viewpoint was very diverse until an "orthodoxy" was created.
  • Stephen: "It is an interesting, fascinating, heretical story."

Sunday, April 15, 2007

If you guessed that all this redecorating meant I was procrastinating...

You were correct. Not only do I have a new page template, but if you look along the right hand side of the page, you can see that I've added a feed with my bookmarks, which are just random things that I have read on the internet recently that I thought were interesting enough to save and share. Note, also, the Harry Potter countdown! I also added a list of the Things I Love, because sometimes you just need a way to procrastinate and I figured I would share some of my favorite ways with you. Be careful though, some involve paying for things, like Though I, for one, can spend hours on there just looking through the recommendations and the "people who bought this book, also bought" stuff.

Also, I'm starting a new blog, Blogging from the Beginning, where I'm just going to post my thoughts/predictions as I go through the first six Harry Potter books, chapter by chapter, as I wait for Deathly Hallows to come out.

Potter for President, or, A Dork Manifesto

I have gone Harry Potter crazy tonight. I can't believe it's all ending so soon... I guess this just means that I am going to have to have one heck of a party to celebrate the seventh book. But ending, it has such finality. Harry Potter to me is so much more than the books themselves. It's fan-fiction, it's creativity, it's an online community, it's wizard rock, it's a group of people with a common fantasy world that is often too like our own but different in so many ways. It is my college years. It is midnight release parties. It is friends. It is dying my hair Weasley-red. It is random people coming up and talking to me when I wear my "Severus Snape is Innocent" t-shirt. And it's almost over.

Other obsessions have defined me, but those have always been self-definitions. I've been "the gone with the wind girl," or the weird girl who likes to read about old dead royalty. But, with Harry Potter, there was an "us," even if often that "us" was only words on a screen. But so often it wasn't just words on a screen. It was real life friends who finally gave in and read after I bugged them so much about it and the wonderful conversations that started. It was midnight movie releases where the opening theme music leads to a standing ovation. It was bookstore release parties with costumes and sorting hats and people of all ages who were there because a series of books had taken them out of their lives and into another world. As much as I'll miss Harry, Ron, and Hermione, I might just miss them more.

And I realize it doesn't have to end. But, it is ending in a way. People will always talk about and obsess over HP. But no one will truly experience it like we did. I've always joked that when my (future, hypothetical) kids get old enough to read HP, I will make them wait a few years in between each one, because it's not fair that they get to zoom through them without antagonizing waits. But, really, those waits won't be as fun without the broader community theorizing and speculating and writing.

Anyway, I'm definitely going back to Texas for this*. I don't know whether Borders or Barnes and Noble would have the best party. Right now I'm leaning towards the Borders in downtown Dallas.

*Is this a sign of something not entirely positive when you are willing to spend hundreds of dollars to go home for the release of a book that you could just as easily get right where you live?

Saturday, April 14, 2007


You know, my living room is amazingly out of balance. These two pictures, sadly enough, are in the same room. One side is far more "busy" than the other.

On the other hand, notice the new art! On the wall in the picture on the bottom, there is a print of John William Waterhouse's The Lady of Shallot, which is based on the poem of the same name by Alfred Lord Tennyson. I have recently become enamored with Pre-Raphaelite art, and hope to get more of it. Of course, given that I am soon moving into an apartment smaller than the one I'm currently in, wall space may be an issue. As you see on the picture on the top, I tend to accumulate clutter, on walls and otherwise.

Hopefully I'll be able to move in May 15. I don't have to be out of this apartment until May 31, so that's a good long time to move things over gradually.

142 years ago today...

John Wilkes Booth shot Abraham Lincoln. I wouldn't have cared, really,* except I just read Assassination Vacation by Sarah Vowell. You should too. It's really good.

*that's not to say that I don't care that Lincoln was shot. An awful thing, obviously. But my historical fascinations tend to be more European in nature. I am slightly obsessive, though not to the same delightful extent as Sarah Vowell. Well, I suppose I might be if I had the means to travel all over Europe, tracking locations of royal killings (such as that of Mary, Queen of Scots who was unfairly deprived of her throne and beheaded by Elizabeth I of England. Unlike most authors of historical texts on the issue, I am firmly on Mary's side.)

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Wednesday, April 11, 2007


I finally figured out why my refrigerator has had a faint spoiled smell to it over the past few weeks. I checked to make sure everything was in date and cleaned it out twice, yet the smell pervaded and had gotten worse over the past few days. Finally, on a whim, I opened the bottom drawer... you know, the one most people use for produce but that I had never opened?

Well, turns out that while Ema was here, she, quite rationally, placed produce in the produce place. Unfortunately, it no longer resembles produce, in sight or smell.

I think I'll clean it out tomorrow; I have grand cleaning ambitions for the latter part of this week, including, but not limited to, my bathroom. I also think I'll reorganize my books. I have to be careful with that, though. Historically, book reorganization has been my favorite way to "clean" without really cleaning. It can take up quite a lot of time.

Monday, April 09, 2007

what I have to say about Don Imus

Racist, yes. Sexist, yes. And, indeed, I fully support firing/suspension or whatever. That's not a free speech issue, that's a free market issue, right?* People demand he be taken off the air because he is offensive. I fully support that. In addition to calling Rutgers' women's basketball team a bunch of "nappy headed hos," he has said he he hired a co-host to tell the "nigger jokes."

FAIR and others have documented numerous instances of Imus and his on-air colleagues expressing overt racism and other forms of bigotry. Imus himself has referred to African-American journalist Gwen Ifill as "a cleaning lady," to New York Times sports reporter Bill Rhoden as "quota hire" and to tennis player Amelie Mauresmo as "a big old lesbo." Imus called Washington Post reporter Howard Kurtz a "boner-nosed... beanie-wearing Jewboy," referred to a disabled colleague as "the cripple," and to an Indian men's tennis duo as "Gunga Din and Sambo." In Imus' words, the New York Knicks are "chest-thumping pimps."

Imus' on again/off again sidekick Sid Rosenberg was temporarily fired in 2001 for calling tennis player Venus Williams an "animal" and remarking that the Williams sisters—Venus and her tennis player sister Serena—would more likely be featured in National Geographic than in Playboy. Rosenberg insisted to New York's Daily News (6/7/01) that his comments weren't racist, "just zoological." In 2004, MSNBC had to apologize when the rehired Rosenberg referred to Palestinians as "stinking animals."

But I was just watching Democracy Now! and heard Al Sharpton suggest that the FCC needed to be involved in the regulation of this sort of racist/sexist speech over the airwaves. That I cannot agree to. I don't know where exactly to draw the line in terms of indecency regulation on public airwaves, but offensive humor is certainly within the realm of protected speech. I certainly did not find it funny. And I think CBS Radio should definitely fire/suspend him. But regulation... naa... that's starting to sound a little too Patriot Act for me.

*Please do not think I am a person who typically resorts to "free market" arguments. I only say that because when I tell people I am for firing Imus, I get asked, indignantly, "what about free speech? the first amendment?" My argument is that networks and viewers, according to the market, get to decide who goes on. People don't have an automatic "right" to be heard on CBS Radio.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

today's lesson

You can spend hours looking through's recommendations. Not to mention lots of money. Evil and brilliant marketing strategy. Because they are so good at it.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

the best feeling in the world

Despite having loads to do tomorrow, a recent spate of sleeplessness has caused me to do something I reserve for the most extreme of occasions:

I am about to go to sleep, and I am not going to set a single alarm clock.

I usually have three set on any given night.

See you in the morning! Or mid morning! Or early afternoon! Who knows?

Thursday, April 05, 2007

What I've learned tonight

Procrastination does not equal free time. You have to pay it back later, with interest. And I'm in time-debt right about now.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

I really do love the smell of libraries.

Completely unrelated: I love those "upside-down" maps with the South Pole at the top. They're really quite brilliant and I think I'll get one. Mostly I like how they weird people out and disorient them, even though it is completely due to cultural convention that most of our maps look like they do.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

blogging on the fly

I'm using a computer that's meant to be used for the library catalog, so I can't say much. I'll only say that libraries are wonderful. Maybe I'll quit grad school and go to library school. I want to live in a library. Anyway, now I've got to drag the 15 books I checked out out of here. Adios!

Sunday, April 01, 2007

add another one to the list

In addition to academic crushes, I also have literary and historical crushes. It's sad but true. This weekend, I have spent the better part of the time I should have been studying for my stats exam on Tuesday reading, or, rather, listening to, The Da Vinci Code. It's on audio, so I can't read quickly like I would have done with a book; I was stuck with the pace of the (rather good) narrator. Anyway, I've just finished it, and have now added Robert Langdon to my list of literary crushes. If you're keeping track, here's where the list stands, in order of preference. But this order can change on a whim and is often correlated with how recently I have read the book in question.

Remus Lupin
, Professor of Defense Against the Dark Arts, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry: werewolf, friend to James and Lilly Potter, protector of Harry, likely former lover of Sirius Black*, currently in a relationship with Nymphadora Tonks.

Robert Langdon, Professor of Religious Iconography and Symbology at Harvard University, foremost expert, looks like "Harrison Ford in Harris tweed." He's currently involved with Sophie Neveu.

Rhett Butler, general scoundrel, speculator, and surprisingly intensely loving guy who Scarlett will get back, in the end.

Henry Tilney, brilliant and sarcastic young clergyman, engaged to Catherine Morland, a silly girl who does not deserve him as I do

Atticus Finch, lawyer father in To Kill a Mockingbird

Theodore Laurence, aka Laurie, another funny guy who married a silly girl who does not deserve him, Amy March; he should absolutely be with Jo March--incidentally, I also have a bit of a crush on her

Edward Ferrars
, another young Jane Austen clergyman; he's not quite so much fun as Henry T., but lovely nonetheless. And Elinor is lovely, too!

Edmund Bertram, not to harp on the JA clergymen, but, really, they're hard to resist

Gilbert Blythe
, I read the Anne of Green Gables books only for him

Mr. Knightley, particularly hard to resist when played by Jeremy Northam

Pointedly not on this list is Mr. Darcy.

Historical crushes are irrelevant to this post, but include:
Sir Isaac Newton--he's hot, have a look
Sir Laurence Olivier
Mary, Queen of Scots
Lord Byron
Eleanor of Aquitaine
John of Gaunt--though this might qualify more as a literary than historical crush. I love him in Katherine, but he was not a nice guy in real life.
Prince Albert
George Washington

*it's true and i'll argue with you if i have to