Tag Archives: reading

#10 For love of reading

My last post was about libraries – this one is about books specifically.

Growing up I remember trips to the library when my brother and I would pick out crazy amounts of children’s books, bring them home, and devour them. I read so much as a child that there was no chance I would stop as an adult. While I don’t read as much as I’d like to these days (seriously, if I could find a way to make money on it I’d like to just read and write all day…mostly read), I still read more than most.

I generally prefer literary novels and classics, but I also love hard-boiled detective fiction (Chandler and Hammett, for example) and some sci-fi/fantasy stuff (Gaiman, for one). I pick up some nonfiction as well, although not as much as I probably should. I enjoy reading about cooking and kitchen science/chemistry and have acquired a taste for fashion. Other than books I read blogs of all sorts and a lot of news articles with a fair number of op/eds mixed in.

I’ve taken my love of books for granted off and on for my entire life. I talk to people who don’t know who, say, Anne Boleyn is and I’m flabbergasted. The truth is I take that type of knowledge for granted. Of course I know who Anne Boleyn is – her story and her daughter’s story are probably two of the most-written about in historical fiction. Of course I think you should know who she is regardless because of the role she and her family played in history regarding marriage, religion, and the rulers of England, but I have an advantage because I’ve read so many fictionalized accounts of the historical figures of the era.

In high school people used to ask me how I did so well in my classes, and I’d respond immediately with, “I read the book.” It always seemed like they were looking for some easy answer – like maybe I knew some special way to know everything without ever having to work to learn it. Reading came easily to me probably because I learned to love it early in life.

Reading is important beyond description. It is one of the easiest ways to acquire knowledge, to be right about thing, to teach yourself to think more deeply. The more you read, the more you understand in life, school, work or what have you. I don’t always take my love of reading for granted, but I do far more often than I should.

(I can count, I swear…)

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I love the library!

Public libraries are full of invaluable resources. Visit one. Maybe consider supporting one financially or with volunteer time.

I love when others realize how wonderful libraries are.

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Today’s Multifarious Mix: June 9th, 2012

Same type of posts, new name. I thought I’d try out the “Multifarious Mix” as the new title for my “What I’ve Been Reading” posts. Comments are welcome, but try not to be too harsh.

In other news, my posts are probably going to be fewer in the near future. I was just hired for a full-time contract position from now until the end of November (in other words: I got a job).

I’m always a little odd by how many different facets of the abortion discussion actually exist. I say discussion because I’m not so much talking about the debate (pro-choice or pro-life), but rather about the numerous and varied reasons abortion should remain a choice for all patients to be decided on privately. When abortion isn’t an option, the results can be heart-wrenching.

I’m not sure why I never saw this awesome web comic, but I love it. Welcome to science! Thanks for the link, Jigar! I’ve added the Bad Astronomer to my blogroll.

The90sLife on Twitter posted a link to an article featuring the work of Jirka. Photo manipulation to create life-like Disney characters? Awesome. My favorite is Aurora.

Whether it’s taking books away or basketballs, it boils down to the same thing: kids don’t substitute “better” or “safer” things for what was taken away. They switch activities. It’s not, “Oh, you took my basketball? I’ll just use this squishy ball to play a crappy version of HORSE,” it’s, “Oh you took my basketball? I’m going to take up protesting and activism that will annoy the crap out of the adults working at this school.” 😉

Committing to your dog(s).

What do you do when the religious people in your life try to inject religion into your non-religious events? I mean, I was annoyed enough when David Petraeus kindheartedly said, “God bless you,” during my commencement ceremony.*

The Ugly Moose posts yet another funny story. I’m a little awed by people who can consistently make others laugh, especially if it’s in a thoughtful way.

“I believe I explained the American Civil War was in fact lost in 1865. No, the South isn’t going to rise again. Actually I find that really offensive, and I get the impression you might be a racist.”

I still don’t like sesame seeds, so I didn’t really enjoy the spicy cucumber salad I made today.

*As much as it bothered me, he said it in the least condescending manner I’ve ever heard. Like he truly believed he was saying something really wonderful to us. Still bothered me because my graduation ceremony was supposed to be god-free – not by any guarantee, just that they have a separate Baccalaureate ceremony for that stuff.

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What I’ve Been Reading March 28

My Sister’s Keeper by Jody Picoult. And I’m not happy with the ending. I started it yesterday and finished it today. It was hard to put down. It’s the reason that this post has so few links.

Here’s an article about how many characters in books default into white people in our heads. Apparently when you mess with people’s preconceived idea of a character’s race they get irrationally angry. Also, apparently some teens think the death of a black character is less sad than the death of a white character. Wtf? I mean, I know how annoying it can be when they cast the wrong actor for a character in a movie adaptation of a book, but being upset about race when the book character was never specified as white is just stupid.

You know what is frequently missing from those who say global warming is not happening? A proper refutation of the studies and research done in support of the theory. This opinion piece is slightly different – the author suggests the Earth is warming, but that the models predicting what will happen are wrong. He may be right, but I need better science than what can be put in an opinions piece.

I feel similarly toward books as the author of this article – they don’t need to have greater meaning to be worth enjoying and reading. Pushing extra meaning on books is totally unnecessary

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