Parenthesis & Gilmore Girls realisations

I’ve got a feeling this post will be a parenthetical one. You were warned.

You know how sometimes you’re talking to someone and you hit it off and all is good ’till you have to say “bye” and it turns out majorly awkward and perhaps embarrassing? (Not to brag, but I’m the friggin’ master.) Well, I don’t know how everyone else deals with it, but I mainly – and involuntarily – mull over it while forgetting all the happy Hey-this-was-fun feelings.

Something along those lines happened today and I was bummed and didn’t know why. And then I watched a Gilmore Girls episode

(Mom and I are re-watching it. Again. Third time, I think.  It just keeps getting better! And I keep noticing more stuff – movies to watch, books to read, bands to listen to. Speaking of which, anyone ever read “Howl” by Allen Ginsberg?)

in which Jess finally arrives to Stars Hollow – we’d been expecting him for quite some time, and had been making lists of reasons why he’s so much more interesting than Dean (not a good re-watch for Dean this time), but then he finally came and… well, he was more than a bit annoying! (Notice I use the past tense in the hopes he’ll grow out of it, again.)

And that bugged me too.

And I think something hit me. A stupid, simple realisation that may – may – aid me next time I experience some stupid social embarrassment.

I don’t have to like you all the time.

You don’t have to like me all the time.

And it’s okay! Ain’t a big deal. It happens. (Even with Jess.)

And I know that now that I’ve put it into semi-coherent sentences the thought is neither original nor revolutionary, but trust me, it’s a big deal to me. Particularly because I think it’s more difficult to accept that than the “You don’t have to like me. PERIOD”, which is bad, but at least you can put those people into a tiny can, label it Okay, Then and move on — with people you’re friends or sorta friends with you can’t really… compartmentalise. They’ll fight with the others if you stick them in the Okay, Then can. Which I guess is what makes them friends. Or sorta friends.

 

I thought I had something insightful for today. Really did. What waas it? Came up during one of the tests today. (Two tests today, brain rebooting with GG.)

I think I need to watch a few more GG episodes. With some icecream. And popcorn. And tea. (They are always eating! They make me hungry.)

Have a good weekend :D !

 

“We have buried the putrid corpse of liberty.”
Mussolini, quoted in episode 2.03

They´re heeeere!

(This is one of those I-don´t-have-much-to-say-but-I´m-so-excited-my-books-got-here moments. Lots of pictures coming your way.)

The lovely books I ordered on Better World Books have arrived sooner than expected!

And in a big, green bag.

Thanks, BWB! ;)

Here are the new members of the happy family:

A couple for next semester, a couple for mindless fun at the beeach (which won´t be cold, against all odds), aand the recommendation Tanya gave me, sometime ago.

Remember the evil suggestion?
It looks great, can´t wait to read it!

But for the moment (a week and a half away from the winter holidays, going through finals), I´ll sit with the heavy textbooks and enjoy the library´s view.

Bye!

To infinity and beyond!

That was the title to a WordPress trending post. Or something. Apparently, we’re getting infinite scrolling at some point. Yay!

But it reminded me of two things.

Firstly, I studied Laplace transforms through Salman Khan’s videos (the ones Bill Gates’s son was using for school and were granted a whole lot of money to form the Khan Academy, an aaawesome place if you’re absolutely lost in Calculus and the textbook isn’t helping), and everytime Sal enunciated the Laplace transform definition, I heard “From zero to infinity – and beyond!“.

Laplace transform definition (from here)

And secondly, eventhough I was outraged when I read that Matt has never read Harry Potter books, I have never watched Toy Story 1 or 2. Which made the 3rd one a bit odd, what with all the people crying next to me.

He just DIED!

I´ve spent most of my day in a haze, telling my mother “But he just DIED!” and having her stare at me with the “It´s a BOOK!” look.

But isn´t it terrible when authors just decide to KILL their characters? Their precious characters? The ones we love and look forward to hearing (reading) about? They just kill them.

Mean.

 

While I attempt to recover, has any character made you feel this way too?

Writers’ Block & Writers’ Bloc

Have you not yet heard about Writers’ Bloc? Go take a look. They can explain it a lot better than me, in my current state. No even Plinky could get me a subject (just joined and totally have a story about being completely lost in past couple of days, but it just sounds baaad everytime I try to tell it).

Can I blame it on all the phagocytes trying to eat whatever it is I seem to have contracted?

But where was I? Writers’ Bloc, the awesome Goodreads group. They are gathering ideas for the first book to be discussed. First four books, actually. Doesn´t it sound like fun? Haven´t you always wanted to be in a book club? Come oon, go take a look already.

I´m looking forward to it. Especially since it seems one of the first books will be Harry Potter, and I´ve never really got a chance to discuss it properly. You know, with people who were also gasping at Quidditch matches and marvelling at the explanation for having the Whomping Willow at Hogwarts, conveniently guarding a secret passage into the Shrieking Shack (for more of my Hogwarts nostalgia, click here). And the focus of the group is, obviously, writing. It´d be nice to dissect some of the styles… That sounds bad. Is there a less destructive equivalent of dissecting? Meeh.

But anyways, the group has some great badges and by joining them you get to display one at your blog, should you have one.

I´m not really much of a writer. I tend to write a lot. In this blog, in my journal, in long emails to some friends, wherever. But it´s not really writing, it´s babbling. Sometimes I have a point, most times I don´t – it´s just that insane need to verbalize what´s on your mind. (I had a language teacher who made that sound really good. Gotta find that notebook.) I used to write short stories and chronicles at school, but somehow it just went away, and I guess I´m kind of hoping Writers’ Bloc would give me the push I need to get back to it (and perhaps the tools to make it half decent?).

I´ve always wanted to be able to use Gimp (that awesome opensource image manipulation program that´s supposed to be better than Photoshop and annoyingly noone I know in the field seems to care about it) but I´ve never done anything because I had no ideas I could actually implement with the little knowledge I have – then this guy comes along and, well, I don´t wanna be addicted to brain crack. Here´s my first ever animated image on Gimp:

As stated, Writers’ Bloc has some great badges with witty catch phrases, but should you want to use that one, go ahead :)

That´s it. Got a driving lesson to get to!

SSG review (spoiler-free)

(I never know how to title reviews.)

You know those little praise blurb thingies that all books seem to have (eventhough you´ve never heard of the people doing the praising and secretly wonder if they exist)? On the back of my edition of “Secret Society Girl” it says:

“A warning label should be put on the cover of this book: Get comfortable, because once you pick it up, you won´t be able to put it down.”

–Cara Lockwood, bestselling author of I Do (but I Don´t)

Well, Cara Lockwood, I´d have to agree with you. Most of my Friday was filled with reading this book.

It not only lived up to my expectation of it – easy, fun chick flick set in college – but surpassed it with really interesting and likable characters. But let me start this right.

First, take a good look at this cover, please.

We´ll get back to it later.

In case you haven´t picked this up before: “Secret Society Girl” is the first book of the Ivy League Series, by Diana Peterfreund. It is set in Eli University, an Ivy league fictional university, focusing on junior Amy Haskell, editor of the literary magazine, who´s expecting to be “tapped” into a literary society but instead gets pulled into a more… er… traditional one.

She, herself, is a pretty nice character – hard working, focused, moral compass pointing north-west, lives with Lydia, pre-Law, a bit jealous, but a good friend. But they are not the ones I felt compelled to share with my friends. Nope. I wrote a huge email to another Seth Cohen-loving friend telling her about Brandon Weare, a nerd-y, a quarter Asian, and generally awesome, Good Guy.

Good Guys always get me in books/movies. Can´t help it. Even if they are named Brandon Weare (discussed and agreed – that´s not a name for a Seth Cohen-type character!). Which is why I´ll probably end up reading the rest of the series.

He´s not the only good character around. But there isn´t much shared about the others (sometimes series bug me). There are four other girls: Odile, a former actress/singer and with an answer to everything; Demetria, a feisty activist; Jennifer, a religious computer genious who´s a bit conceived; and Clarissa, the legacy, responsible for some mushy stuff in the end (that I actually enjoyed). And other boys, Malcolm, who´s lovely (I wish I had a Malcolm in my life), and George, the playboy – they are always fun to read about.

There are two cons to this book: 1) It is very clearly written to be a series (it hints at some other plots that aren´t developed), and this very clearly is just an introduction to the characters and the Ivy league secret society club world the author created, meaning there isn´t a reaally strong plot line and the twists aren´t all that great, even if they are surrounded by entertaining elements; and 2) It is clearly targeted at Gossip Girl fans, it´s not just the cover – even if the characters have more depth and display some meaningful human connection, the author isn´t very subtle about the premise of the series. My example?

“Connubial Bliss reports,” he replied. “One of the most important days in a Knight´s Rose & Grave experience. You stand up in front of all your brothers and basically give them a rundown of your sexual experiences to date.”

(page 126)

Whaaat? Am I completely mistaken and this is normal and happens in other groups or is this just an invitation to read the other books and find out about all the characters´ sexual history? Come oon.

But anyway, I can´t tell you what the major plot-line is, because I think it would be kind of spoiler-ly, but what I can tell you is that there are some very articulate characters here, which is kind of new for teeny books, and they manage to make pretty compelling arguments. To the opposition. Who says some pretty revolting stuff. Which made me go YEAH! in my head several times.

I wish I could be in a society like that, if only to try to absorb a little of their wittiness/eloquence.

The biggest plus in the book, the one that overcomes the cons by itself, is the genuine feeling of brotherhood (and sisterhood) that the characters manage to show in a very seductive way. They make you want to be in a secret society and have that kind of relationship, and isn´t making you want to be a part of the story the main reason we read fiction?

So I´m pretty sure I´ll stick through and read the rest.

But about that cover – I was amazed, I noticed the preppy look but I did not notice the pin until I read more of the story. Which is kind of the point they make in the book (“You only notice if you´re looking.”), was just wondering if I was alone there.

Oh, and there´s something else! I even dog-eared it, it bothered me so much. There´s ONE sequence in the book that I reeally didn´t like. And it´s kind of in the beginning, in the initiation thing. If you read it, you´ll know what I´m talking about. And if you´re anything like me, you´ll probably consider putting it down and finding something else. But don´t. If you ignore that section, the book comes up nicely. Promise.

I did have to tell a friend about it when it happened, Thursday,  though. And everytime he bumped into me with the book on the following day he asked me if it had happened yet. He can´t fathom why girls like to read this sort of book, incident or no incident. But that´s another story.