Thursday, April 23, 2009

Another Book Meme!

I was tagged via twitter by the awesome Sarah Maclean (check out her new book, The Season!), so here goes!

1. What author do you own the most books by?
Lois Gladys Leppard. I'm on a quest to someday own the entire Mandie series! (All 41 of them)

2. What book do you own the most copies of?
Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There by Lewis Carroll

3. What fictional character are you secretly in love with?
...Lincoln Clinton Carter Kennedy? ^^; In my personal fandom he's an aloof, sweet-hearted 18/19 year old. It's a fanfic thing. But you see why this was a secret, right?
Also: Calvin O'Keefe, Jonathan Guyer, Jamie Madrox, and so many many more, but those aren't secrets ;D

4. What book have you read more than any other?
Hm...Through the Looking Glass or Looking for Alaska by John Green. The adult book I've read the most is The Great Gatsby by F Scott Fitzgerald.

5. What was your favorite book when you were ten years old?
Most likely one of the Mandie books; or Holes by Louis Sachar, which came out about that time.

6. What is the worst book you’ve read in the past year?
If I don't like a book, I don't finish. Although I was pretty upset with the NOT ending of Superior Saturday by Garth Nix

7. What is the best book you’ve read in the past year?
I'm still pretty in love with Looking for re-reads count?

8. If you could tell everyone you tagged to read one book, what would it be?
The Higher Power of Lucky by Susan Patron. Powerful stuff, man.

9. What is the most difficult book you’ve ever read?
I'm with Sarah, Ulysses is definitely up there for me. But I think overall Crime and Punishment by Fyodr Dostoyvsky (whose name changes spelling all the time)

10. Do you prefer the French or the Russians?
I think my last answer would give you a hint, but if not: French. I like Camus, hate Dostoyvsky.

11. Shakespeare, Milton or Chaucer?
...that's hard. Uh...uh...Chaucer. I love Shakespeare, I really do, but all his plays are kind of the same? Plus, Paul Bettany never played Shakespeare.

12. Austen or Eliot?
Austen, no contest.

13. What is the biggest or most embarrassing gap in your reading?
(Sarah, DON'T. They're awful) I've never read a lot of the High School English classics. They were always required for the other classes, but not mine. Like To Kill a Mockingbird, Catcher in the Rye, & One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest.

14. What is your favorite novel?
Like I was explaining last night, I don't have one favorite, I have three: one for each reading level I read/study.
Adult - The Great Gatsby by F Scott Fitzgerald
YA - Looking for Alaska by John Green
Children's - The Higher Power of Lucky by Susan Patron.
(notice a theme there? Yeah, so did I. I have depressing taste in books, I own novel has kind of the same theme too)

15. Plays?
Love 'em. My favorite is The Taming of the Shrew by Shakespeare

16. Poem?
Eh, it really depends. I can love them, hate them, or not care. I really like Emily Dickenson & Not Waving but Drowning by Stevie Smith.

17. Essay?
Not so much, but I guess if it had a really fantastic topic then I might.

18. Non Fiction
It really depends on the topic, but overall I'm not much for nonfic.

19. Graphic Novel?
YES. I work in a comic book store, okay?

20. Science Fiction?
Love 'em!

22. Fantasy?
Oh absolutely!

23. Who is your favorite writer?
Maureen Johnson. I know, I know, it goes with nothing else I mentioned in this post and all her books are happy & funny & not morbid. I don't know, I just like her style.

24. What are you reading right now?
Some birds outside & my dog snoring. It's very quiet here.

25. Favorite Genre:
YA - Realistic fiction. Go figure.

I tag YOU.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

BEDA09: Day 7: You Will Never Find the Perfect Swimsuit

Yay! I made it a whole week so far!

Just get that through your head right now. Unless of course you are a mannequin, in which case I'm a little afraid and will avoid you. No offense to you personally, I just have a fear of mannequins. Anyway...moving on.

Now, this may be different for guys because I don't have any experience in buying men's swim trunks, but this is true for women. Swimsuits are not made for you. They are made to make you feel like a lesser version of yourself. They do this through size discrimination. And really, it doesn't matter what size you are, the swimsuit business discriminates against you.

If you are really tiny: All the suits are too big for you. Sorry.
If you are small: You cannot have those cute skirt bottoms. This is what I spent a long time looking for today. I'm a size 4 and I have big thighs and I think the skirt bottoms look better than the others. What are those called anyway, the ones that look like panties? I don't know. But they don't make skirt or short bottoms for anyone under size 10, which is very unfair.
If you are a medium size: There is nothing in your size either, sorry. This is a scheme to convince you that you are too big, which you are not.
If you are a bigger size: There are no cute suits. This is also a scheme to convince you that you are too big to wear a suit, which you are not.

The media & the swimsuit industries are out to ruin your self-esteem. They want to make shopping for a swimsuit as painful as possible so that you will go home & starve yourself. Or take some sort of diet pills. They want you to become horribly anorexic, which by the way, is not sexy.


Monday, April 06, 2009

BEDA09: Day 6: Meeting Guys & Girls at the Gym & Why This is a Bad Idea

Okay, so today I finally had the time and the determination to take that little card over to Cardinal Fitness to get my free day's worth of a workout. I have had this card for a few weeks now, ever since my co-worker Susan gave it to me. First off, this was not an insult or a hint to loose a few pounds. I work at Jenny Craig and Susan had just worked out a little deal with the guy at Cardinal so that they would each refer clients to the other and he gave her a whole stack of day passes. She offered one to me and I took it.

Fast forward to today when I finally go. I show up, walk straight to the front desk and say to the three people standing there "I need some information on joining up, please." I said please because I am generally a polite person. The guy looks at me, slides a little clipboard over and has me write down some information (they will likely use this info to bother me by phone tomorrow, or by mail next week). One of the girls wanders off, and the other one turns to the guy and says "I got this one." He looks at her and says "Nah, it's cool," then turns to me and offers to show me around. I get a short tour of this place, and it's pretty small, honestly.

Now, I need to mention something here. This trainer is cute, he is very cute. Not my type really, but cute. He had nice hair and about a billion freckles. He smiled a lot. So I think I only heard about 80% of what he said (which honestly is only slightly less than usual...ADD child here) because I was trying to figure out not how to get his number (I'm happy with my current situation, thanks), but why fitness trainers are all so good looking. Yes, they are healthy and healthy is attractive, but come on, you get a lot of your looks from genes. So is there a gene that makes you want to work in a health club? Are you somehow drawn to gyms because your great-great-aunt on your mother's side was once a world class gymnasts' trainer? I have no idea. I didn't have time to figure this out or ask him questions about his lineage (which would be weird, but not completely out of character for me), because he immediately started trying to sell me the program. By the way, the deal changed and I could no longer join for $10; I'm not happy about that. We'll get back to that point though in a minute.

I whip out my pretty little card and say "Actually, I want to use this today." Freckle Boy looked disheartened (I wonder if they work on commission) but he took my card and my ID (I'm not sure why) and tells me to have fun. I ask him where the ladies locker room is because he didn't say or because I was too distracting wondering about his great-great aunt on his mother's side. Who I suspect was secretly Irish, but moved to Russia because that's where the gymnasts were at the time. This is beside the point though.

A few minutes later I'm on that treadmill and I'm wondering a few things. The thought that kept coming up though was why do people always want to meet someone at the gym? This is a horrible place to find a potential date people!! Yes, your date will be healthy and maybe muscular and/or athletic. Or they could be like you and just pretending to get a proper workout while on the prowl for a date. Plus, now think long & hard about this one: do you really want to meet someone while you're all sweaty & gross? More importantly, do you want to meet someone while THEY are all sweaty & gross? I don't know about you, but I don't. Plus, if you get the date and they turn out to be a horrible person that you never want to see again, how do you face them at the gym next time?

From what I observed today with my free day pass is that no one really wants to meet someone at the gym. Okay, that's not true. Everyone wants to meet someone somewhere and the gym is not off-limits. There were people checking each other out, but in the end, the gym is not an ideal place to meet someone. Most people just plugged in their headphones and walked on the treadmill or sat on a bike. Headphones are the perfect thing to send the "I-Don't-Want-To-Talk-To-Anyone-Now" vibe. It works about 93% of the time, try it. Some girls were texting on their phones (I'm not being sexist, I'm just reporting what I saw), which gives off the I'd-Rather-Talk-To-Someone-Else vibe, which may be even more effective at getting people to leave you alone. It's easier to listen to music though if you're running. Most women did not wear a lot of makeup, because they were working out. They're going to get all nasty anyway, why go through the hassle of getting pretty first? It's a waste of time and effort. No one dresses up to look nice when they go to the gym--it's simply impractical.

So, tell me, why do people always think that when they join a gym they'll meet someone fabulous and amazing to sweep them off their feet (or someone you can sweep off their feet)? There are thousands of places better to meet someone! Unless, of course, cute, freckle-faced trainers who were somewhere along the line secretly Irish, then by all means, join the gym and if I decide that it's not worth going to my first choice gym and go to Cardinal, then we can work out together. I'll even talk to Freckle Boy for you & be your wing-girl. It's something I'm good at. But if that's not what you want, ignore the stories and look for someone where you are comfortable.

If you like books and want to meet a cute, Nerdfighting girl who likes books also, try Barnes & Noble. If you are caffeine-addicted and want to meet a nice guy who doesn't make fun of you for drinking four cups an hour, try Starbucks. There's always the internet, but be careful there. And if you're in Chicagoland and need a wing-girl who writes really long blogs like this one, call me.

Sunday, April 05, 2009

BEDA Day 5: How My Day Went From Bad to Spectacular!

If you follow me on LiveJournal or Twitter (heck, I even ranted about this on my Triad of Dysfunction video), you'll know that today was supposed to be my day off of work. You'll also know that it wasn't, because I had to cover for one of the other girls. On top of this, it was possibly the worst day I've worked in a long time. However, I try my best not to dwell on the bad things in life and right now I'm doing pretty good. Earlier I was doing spectacular ;D

So, here is a list of things that can turn my day around:
+ Pizza. There is a great little pizza place near where I work that serves slices of pizza that are honestly bigger than my head and about an inch thick without having too much cheese. I'm lactose intolerant, but this was fine and the taste would have been worth the stomach ache anyway.

+ Good Movies with Good Music.
When I got home I had only planned on watching a few minutes of TV while I finished my lunch, and to my surprise, Spectacular! was on! This is one of my favorite movies with some of my favorite songs, so I was really happy. I don't know what it is about this movie, but I just can't be in a bad mood while watching it! Sadly, it was the end of the movie.
However...after a bit of searching, I was able to find the full movie online! This was doubly awesome because awhile back I had send the soundtrack to my friend (and fellow Nerdwriter) Hilary Apollo and got her hooked on the music. And now I was able to get her to watch the movie too! There were four of us Nerdwriters on at the same time, so we were all talking on MSN and for most of that time Hilary & I were watching Spectacular! and talking about it. It was so much fun!

Now I'm just finishing up watching Hairspray which is another great movie with great music! I've been dancing along. I really love Amanda Bynes in this movie, she's so darn cute and spunky!

My mother called me from the grocery store earlier and asked me what I wanted for dinner. I told her that I was fine with Kraft mac & cheese, but I wanted the shape kind because they taste better. I didn't tell her this, but she picked me out the Spider-Man kind, so that was pretty cool. My mother knows me so well, hehe. :)

So, in conclusions, things to make a bad day better:
+ Good Food
+ Good Friends
+ Good Films

Saturday, April 04, 2009

On Communication & Things Jez Doesn't Want to Blog About

I didn't know what to blog about so I asked Jen on Skype and my sister in the kitchen. I have gotten many BAD suggestions. So here is a list of things I do not want to blog about. That's my blog for tonight I guess.

+ Alligators
+ Crocodiles
+ Grapes
+ Apple Juice
+ Toast
+ Local politics

In other news, I love modern communication technology. This is what I will truly blog about tonight, because it's something that's been great for me today. I am part of the 5 Nerdsome Writers and today has just been a great day for communicating with them through many different outlets! There is the SAFT which is a facebook thread, LiveJournal, Dailybooth, Twitter, email, MSN Messenger, and then today we added to that list text messaging directly (well, everyone except Jenny who is in England). Later on Toni got me to finally download Skype, which I had never used before. So we did a skype call and that was pretty fun. Just now I was talking to my friend Jen in a video chat via Skype and that was cool too! I think it's amazing that in this day & age we have so many different ways to contact one another and stay in touch! I just read the Marvel Presents: Pride & Prejudice comic book last night and in that age people communicated only through letters or messengers. It could take weeks to get a message to someone! These days you can just send one message to Twitter and instantly all your friends know that you broke your arm, or discovered the Holy Grail, or had Cocoa Puffs for breakfast. You need never feel alone again! Not when you can so easily contact someone else! It is a wonderful time we live in, to be sure.

Friday, April 03, 2009

BEDA Day 3: Why I Believe Seventeen is Great

Have you ever looked at the magazines at the grocery checkout? Yes, of course you have, because there are only two things to look at while you're in that line: magazines and candy (I'm sure you look at both). And what is the one thing all those magazines have in common? Sex. Not even just sex appeal either, though there is plenty of that to be found*. All of these magazines boast that they have the best sex secrets for you! Seventeen Magazine is no exception. Except for one thing: these "secrets" are appropriate for their audience: girls 14-19. When you flip open the magazine, find the correct page, & get to reading, you'll see that all of the secrets are actually tied to young girls talking to their mothers about sex. What kind of magazine is this?! A great one, in my opinion. It doesn't say that no one should be having sex in their teens, but it does say that talking to your mother first will help, even make your sex life better! Because you will have safer sex, be more prepared, know what to expect, and feel less guilt. Your mother may also help you know when you are truly ready, and not just having sex because of pressure from boyfriends or friends or even society.

So Seventeen Magazine? Is on a list of approved reading for Jez's younger sisters. Well...the teenaged ones anyway.

*Refer to my post yesterday to read my hygienist talking about sex appeal in ads.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Copyediting & Why You Need Us

I don't know if I ever announced it on this blog or not, but while I'm waiting to get my Big Break in writing, I fully intend to be a copyeditor. Why? Because the world needs copyeditors and no one else seems to want the job. Everyone else relies entirely on spellcheck to find their mistakes and they don't even want to get into grammar or anything remotely technical about style. And then there's little ole me who picks up a copy of her school's newspaper so that she can make marks all over it correcting grammar and spelling. Yeah...I actually do that. One day if I ever want to write for them again, I will present the editor with my pile of edited papers and tell him that he really needs me. I'm fairly certain that he will be inclined to agree.

Today while at the dentist getting my teeth cleaned my hygienist was talking to me about copyediting. (I love my hygienist by the way, she always remembers things about me, like my English major & that I am very allergic to mint) She was saying that if she ever decided to give up dental work, that she would get her degree in English and probably do the same as I am. There is a poster in that room that is very poorly worded and it bothers her very much. She made a great comment about it: "They spent so much time trying to find the perfect blonde model that they didn't even bother to read what they had printed on there." I think that's true of most things in society right now. These people who are in charge of these sorts of things just think to themselves "Well, it looks good," and that's it. They worry more about the appearance of being correct rather than actually being correct. Why? Because people tend to glance at things and never give anything a proper look. And even if you're not reading every word, you need copyeditors. You need us so that your message gets across, so that there are no mix-ups, and so that your product does not end up on the front page of Fail Blog.

And you need us to do all the grammatical things that you don't want to. This goes double for authors.

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

BEDA, Sick, & Script Frenzy's BEDA. Which is Blog Every Day April. And I'm just barely getting this in on time. I actually did vlog earlier today and I'm working on getting that up right now. I look totally miserable in it though because I'm sick and I've had a really sucky week that will not end. If it wasn't already a day late, I would just re-shoot tomorrow.
Anyway, I already blog every day over on my LiveJournal so for this challenge I thought I would see how many days I can blog other places. This includes here, 5NerdsomeWriters, and maybe Maureen Johnson's ning, because that's where this all started. Well, technically it all started on Twitter, but it's centered on the MJ Ning.

It's also Script Frenzy, which I did not know about until about fifteen minutes ago. My friend Casye just begged me to join it with her, so I'm going to try. You write a script that is 100 pages long in 30 days. This is not as intense as NaNoWriMo thankfully, so I'm going to give it a shot. I make no promises though. I'll update you guys about that.

If you want a real blog, go read my post from yesterday on 5NerdsomeWriters about children's literature and why I think it's better than adult lit.


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