Monday, August 25, 2014

Day 346: Stages

[Quickly, before you start, pop over here to see what stage I reached on the Bout of Books 11 challenge I did last week: it's underwhelming!]

I'm stuck on stage three of the process of grief. Anger. The people around me are becoming uncomfortable. They can't understand why I won't move on. I think it's because I didn't see it happen at the time. I have only just realised that it is, already, a done deal; something that can't be brought back, something forever gone that I didn't realise was leaving us. A lot of people don't even appear aware. When did the word 'fewer' actually die and leave the English language? Suddenly it is gone and I must spend all my time yelling at the television—from ads to news to fiction to categories of programs sometimes referred to, ignominiously, as high-brow television—for 'lesses' where there should have been 'fewers'. All. The. Time. 'Less' harsh chemicals in Finish dishwasher tablets, for example. Is it my past lives in times when English was spoken well that grate with modern usage? Is it the seventy-third gene on my DNA strand that switches grammar-fascism on in my brain? I'm in hell! I'm usually an advocate of the organic nature of language, but this one affects me. It's like we are loosing a poetic nuance for the sake of simplicity, loosing a complicated step in a dance because it's easier to step clumsily into the next phase: something more difficult but more beautiful. We are making language a thing people can use without thinking about it! Dangerous precedence!

List_Addict               Irene

I'm stuck on stage one of the process of grief. Denial, shock. At least, I was when I started this blog post, but due to time passing, as it inevitably does, I have moved through depression (stage four), and am onto the 'I'm okay' stage—which may actually be number one all over again. I should be dead. Merrily wending our way, along the freeway, to look at a house for the second time—a house which we have since fallen in love with, made an offer for, increased the offer, increased it again, got disillusioned with, and lost to another bidder, in the end, gratefully—we suddenly found ourselves, in no discernible increment of time, going from talking about who-knows-what, to spinning through three lanes of late afternoon traffic. I can't recall the bang of the semi-trailer hitting us. Just the surreal change of being. V—— was on the side which was hit; his expectation, in the infinity of time it took to come to a halt, was directed to all the other vehicles that should logically have been impacting with us as we spun through their lanes. I was calm. I didn't scream. I held my paper cup of coffee throughout, uncrushed. Although I have coffee all over my face and coat when we stopped. It was a miracle. Miracles f^€% with your mind. You come out thinking you should feel grateful for your life, you should be feeling you have a second chance. But the bizarreness of the event being survived unscathed, the trivialising of something significant, and the expectations of an abundant thankfulness instead made me depressed. I am fine now; V—— is too. His car is being repaired as we speak and he is getting by in a tinny loan vehicle. Life goes on. But you know what is strangest of all: we went back to the house a few days later, starting at the same point and ending at the same destination, and the GPS didn't take us on the same road. If miracles make your mind explode, then I can't express the effects the idea of meant-to-be, and the subsequent lack of agency it suggests, have on my poor little synapses!

The Outfit
Dress: Op-shopped
Tights: Retail
Bling: Red bracelet from a bike chain gifted by my lovely B——, charm bracelet gifted by my lovely V—— with a charm gifted by B——, ring gifted by V—— from the craft centre of the universe, near Largs, Scotland
Shoes: Irregular Choice Golden Harpy

Photographer de Jour: Moi

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Thursday, August 14, 2014

Day 343: Any Excuse for a Bout of Books (11)

I have a Quarterly Box that I spoil myself with four times a year. It is from Book Riot, which means I get books and book related fabulousnesses sent to my door. What a blessed thing! Last time the wonderous box arrived on my door it had a voucher for a couple of free monthes use of the Oyster Books app. Being an Australian, I am unable to access Oyster as it currently only works in the United States. Sooo! If you have been having thoughts of joining up and are a United States resident, and if you have an email attached to your comments, then be the first person to comment saying you want it and I will email you privately to get your details and send it on. I don't know if that is the right thing to do, I can't guarantee if it will work, but I am happy to send it to you to give it a go. Let me know.

List_Addict               Irene

I'm seriously jealous of Oyster, even though I have the perfectly fabulous alternative that does like the credit cards of Australians: Scribd. I use oodles of valuable reading time scrolling through books I could read on Scribd if it wasn't for the fact that I spend too much time looking for books to read on Scribd—a snake with its tail in its mouth. If I had an Oyster account I would have even less time for actually reading books per se. So although I can't wait, I am grateful for any delay in their decision to expand. Antidote-erally ('coz that's a word, meaning to perform an action that has an antidote effect on the action that couldn't be performed in the last set of sentences), I am joining up with something else instead. Bout of Books 11. It is a week of reading as many books as is humanly possible—in a week. It is a reason to do nothing at any given spare moment for a whole week but read books. I am so excited. The only down side is I am starting a diet that week with my mum, and possibly my sister, and so the reading will be unassisted by chocolate biscuits, marshmallows, cake or any such joys. [There you go B——, books and diets in one blog for you]. Bout of Books is brought to you, if you would like to participate, by the folks over at Bout of Books. You can be like me and sit on your couch reading and not eating yummy things, you can add cakes to the equation, or you can go all out with updates and competitions and Twittering and have a great social week of books. Join in, go on—I'm so looking forward to saying 'Sorry, I can't. I'm reading.' Even if it is just for one week!

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, August 18th and runs through Sunday, August 24th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure, and the only reading competition is between you and your usual number of books read in a week. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 11 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. - From the Bout of Books team

Time to be devoted to reading: All that is physically possible.

Goals: Read lots and lots.

Books: I'm going to aim for ones that help finish some of my challenges, details to come.



00:44: Starting a whole forty-four minutes late due to a problem opening one of the selected books on Scribd (still unresolved), I have now, if front of me, the first four books I will attempt this week. They are all from my Semi Charmed Kind of Life Book Challenge. Number Fourteen on the Times Bestsellers Paperback Trade Fiction list at the time I started reading it: The Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert (501 pages). A book written before I was born: The Man in the High Castle by Philip K Dick (3883 Kindle location units(?) equalling 259 pages). A book another blogger (or eighty) has read for the challenge: Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn (415 pages). And, a biography, autobiography or memoir: The Twelfth of Never: A Memoir by Louis Nowra (377 pages). Off I go! Good luck to all.

23:37: Scribd resolved.
The Signature of All Things - 16/501
The Man in the High Castle - 9%
Gone Girl - 36/415
The Twelfth of Never - 31/377


22:49: Update The Signature of All Things - 29/501
The Man in the High Castle - 16%
Gone Girl - 72/415
The Twelfth of Never - 33/377


03:01 (technically Thursday): Couldn't help it! Added a book. Semi Charmed Challenge. A book from the Children's section of the library or bookstore: The Name of This Book is Secret by Psuedonymous Bosch (326 pages).
The Signature of All Things - 53/501
The Man in the High Castle - 25%
Gone Girl - 88/415
The Twelfth of Never - 44/377
The Name of this Book is Secret - 70/326


01:19 (technically Friday): Not going quite as well as I expected!
The Signature of All Things - 73/501
The Man in the High Castle - 43%
Gone Girl - 124/415
The Twelfth of Never - 74/377
The Name of this Book is Secret - 114/326


00:16 (just gone Saturday): Abysmal!
The Signature of All Things - 82/501
The Man in the High Castle - 48%
Gone Girl - 178/415
The Twelfth of Never - 90/377
The Name of this Book is Secret - 168/326


23:21: Update
The Signature of All Things - 82/501
The Man in the High Castle - 57%
Gone Girl - 262/415
The Twelfth of Never - 90/377
The Name of this Book is Secret - 196/326


13:06 (the next day, fell asleep last night!): In a week I read 810 pages and didn't finish a single book. I guess I'm just not a finisher, and now I have five more unfinished books on my pile. They're all good reads so I will get to enjoy them a little longer. [sigh]
The Signature of All Things - 82/501
The Man in the High Castle - 65%
Gone Girl - 274/415
The Twelfth of Never - 90/377
The Name of this Book is Secret - 196/326

The Outfit
A Green Velvet Dress Many Ways
Dress: Op-shopped
Jacket: Thrifted, Savers, USA
Necklace: Retail
Shoes: Dr Martens

Photographer de Jour: Moi

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