decembrie 30, 2009





me, reading, in 2009

decembrie 30, 2009

BOOK OF THE YEAR: v.s. naipaul – „a bend in the river”

BY GENRE : DEFINITELY A NON-FICTION YEAR : so many awesome books.patrick french’s naipaul biography – „the world is what it is”. steven king – „on writing’. lynn crosbie’s anthology „clicks” (women talking about the moment when they became feminists). robert kaplan – „balkan ghosts”(do not get me started! history/cultural politics, a big chunk on romania in there, woot)

SHORT STORIES: murakami – „blind woman, weeping willow”. lynn coady – „play the monster blind”. nam le – „the boat”. anthologies, too many (a great one, from ’96 i think – called „sudden fiction international” – with v. short shorts)

NOVELS: mmm this is harder this year. except for naipaul: curtis sittenfeld – „american wife” (i love her and i’m not ashamed). heather o’neill – „lullabies for little criminals”. tibor fischer – „under the frog” . bernard schlink – „the reader”.

BOOKS THAT I DO NOT GET, AT ALL, AT ALL, ALL: brace yourselves; it was a year of petty irritations. or maybe of…patience? someone else should call it.

-don delillo – „falling man” – awesome style, pointless…pointless…

-j coetzee – „slow man” – i honestly think he just wanted to punk the readers. there is no other possible…

– anne michaels -„fugitive pieces”. she should’ve sold it as poetry. either that or i’m missing something. (such as, the plot. but whatever.)

– zoe whithall – „holding still…” – my rant about this book would deserve its own post. i wanted to like this book so much. my heart is broken in tiny non-gendered pieces. on the floor. WHHHHHYYYYYYYYY

SURPRISE: or not? i kinda liked m. laurence’s „the diviners”. blah, i know it was because i identified w the main character to the point of eye-rolling, but also: i felt somehow…tender about its dated-ness. weird.

THINGS I KNEW I’D LIKE, THEREFORE NO BIGGIE: zz packer’s stories, nick hornby – „high fidelity”…dave eggers…mmm carol shields, basically anything…

I HAVEN’T MANAGED TO READ: david foster wallace (i know!), cormac mccarthy (yea yea), ??

I WANT: linda svendsen -„marine life”, rawi hage -„cockroach”.

and noooowww, for the , perhaps, real point of this post. i have just finished the first 2 books of „the sisterhood of the traveling pants”. i read them in my bed at night, through my last working week this year. and i cried buckets, and i felt warm and happy accordingly. and what i’m saying is, it’s a good ending and a fitting wrap-up for such a sucky year reading-wise. the laundry room of my building provides me with great insights. right now i’m trying to skim a book by dr. phil – for real. it’s…distracting.

because what should be said, and should never be forgotten, ever, about me in 2009 is: this was in fact a fan fiction year.

forget the ‘oh i graduated the MFA, i wrote a sort-of-a-novel’ crap. this year i was stuck in front of the computer for at least 5 hrs a day (at most…20? i guess. not often tho), F5-ing, as my virtual co-obsessed ppl would say, for new drabbles and one-shots and chaptered stories about how real people have imaginary gay sex with each other. it was lots of fun. i don’t even know how to describe this fun i had. because, after reading so many, it becomes apparent that i actually have no idea how to use words. now seriously, some of this prose is good, some of the things – esp the longer ones (i mean, whoever can maintain an alternative universe over 25K…) are well structured. and, surprise-surprise: the fact that the reader (me) is already so invested in the well-being of the real-life characters makes it so easy. the purpose is there. sometimes we want to believe fan fiction is magic.

bright side

decembrie 18, 2009

1. it’s not cold at all.

i’ve started freaking out re: montreal a bit, small things that come and go,such as: will the money be enough (yes- for one month); how much of a chance do i stand to find a job (yeah that’s the toughest one), to find a place for me alone and in an ok area…how do i travel (i.e. do i fly or take the bus, which, bus journey would be epic, but do i want to complicate things?)…how do i pack all the shit

these are all good things. it’s a bit of a safe madness, worrying about things i know i’ll have to get done.

2. i am not depressed.

just a bit desensitized. i don’t care enough about things and people, and i worry that i should be caring. i used to care. i used to make presents and send sappy messages on birthdays. i used to do meaningful things – and now i can’t even be bothered to go out to a party where i don’t want to be, because a friend asked me to? etc etc etc

it’s all mixed up because i haven’t finished dealing with ‘back there’ yet, so by the point i get to dealing with vancouver, all will be just a big shrug. did i not know i’d only be here for 2 ys? i knew.

3.  [i erased about 4 paras here :))] life is potentially interesting, okay. as long as i believe that, all is fine. there are gonna be days when i’m going to try harder than today. be more grateful, show it more, be more involved, hopefully helpful. basically, the dark days should be way bind me.

and, oh. re: „i know you love me” – if people i love know that i love them, i must be doing something right. i hope they do.

my music 2009 (3)

decembrie 15, 2009

this story at least has a beginning of sorts, and a sort-of-an-end, like:

36. any di franco – you had time: i was so fuckin busted. i thought i was leaving, okay? i was all not sleeping, packing and tearing papers at ungodly hours and whining online and sorting through the books and clothes etc etc. fever. but at least i was going to go back to…people, or something ?!?

37. anna ternheim – no, i don’t remember: i heard this in a clothes store in portland. for serious. i went and asked what it was, and then i almost kicked myself because i hadn’t realized it: anna ternheim duh. but, more importantly, WHAT SONG IS THIS AMOST-TOTALLY-COPIED FROM? i’m this close to getting it…

38. peaches – fuck the pain away: courtesy of sonja/kevin, and i’ll post the miss piggy video, alright

39. florence+the machine – rabbit heart: i think my one big ‘discovery’ this year, incredibly how much i relate to almost everything she does

40. florence+the machine – dog days

41. mos def – quiet dog: (the following bunch courtesy of juliet, who made a lovely ’09 compilation of her own for us)

42. sufjan stevens – there’s too much love

43. the decemberists – sleepless

44. the xx – night time

45. dresden dolls – good day : this is pretty much it right now, i.e. i feel like not seeing any one ever again.

my music 2009 (2)

decembrie 15, 2009

18.  sam cooke – a change is gonna come : i was seriously power-walking to this along false creek in april/may, in the evenings.

19. feeling good: because i’m a good girl, i’ll fill in with the muse version. i like adam’s better though. oh what the hell

20. of montreal – requiem for o.m.m.2

21. animal collective – summertime clothes : this and the immediate following are the result of a period when i was listening to wfuv radio pretty much non-stop

22. the futureheads – the beginning of the twist : a bit of FF that i detect in here? maybe??? i wish i knew my FF better

23. pj harvey&john parish – black-hearted love : love love love pj, doesn’t even matter what she does anymore. for real

24. k’naan – ABCs: in the vein of „i like anything with a good rhythm”- in lit. it’s structure. i think

25. talib kweli – get by : a.k.a the anthem of the creative writing MFA programe at UBC (oh, and fuck vevo :((

26. citizen vein – the circle : sorry for the  fanmade video, it’s the ~best thing i could find around. song is good!

27. lady gaga – poker face: rainy day at the mall. and still not shitty. shiny plastic miracle.

28. kings of leon – sex on fire : one month before adam said in an interview that this would be his entrance theme song. not that anyone has to mind me.

29. spring awakening (duncan sheik) – don’t do sadness

30. emmy the great – we almost had a baby: there was a short weird phase of uh-oh british vocalists going on here

31. adele – tired

32. adele – cold shoulder

33. la roux – bulletproof

34. elvis perkins – shampoo

35. alisan porter – the end song

this was my spring/summer. i just don’t have many words about it because i honestly don’t know or remember what i was doing, or supposed to be doing. but it ended, so.

my music 2009 (1)

decembrie 15, 2009

i’m so ready to get this year done with – also, i’ve had too much coffee today, so let’s go.

1. wilco – california stars : right after my late ’08 san francisco trip, still wondering what took me there & etc

2. interpol – rest my chemistry : dark thesis rewriting days, ugh. or, wow. i miss them

3. kate bush – army dreamers : don’t ask (don’t tell:)) – it was an anti-war-related thing, okay?

4.bonnie ‘prince’ billy – another day full of dread : I HAVE NO IDEA HOW THIS CREPT ITS WAY IN HERE. possible options: i was bored, sick and tired of everything. elizabeth was worried about my depression, into my face. practically come from work, eat, sleep, browse sites…oh wait. nevermind.

5. royskopp – what else is there: i had a huge obsession with this song, worsened by the idea that „this is not what i’d normally listen to” – i mean, what?! what difference does it make? it is now.

6.smog – i break horses: this, from the big „men are pigs/that’s why we love them” & „leonard cohen will never carry my groceries” collection of soulful and very angsty artsy music

7. metric – help i’m alive: see, some songs are me. i am some songs.

8. anja garbarek – beyond my control: i like how this sequence of songs really seems to start making sense now. the sense i have that i’m consolidating the story of this year, and i’ll seal it shut soon.

9. anna ternheim – to be gone : i was finishing my thesis draft, and this is possibly my „ana theme song”

10. anna ternheim- no subtle men: hahahahaha

11. anna ternheim – i say no : one of the ‘daria theme songs’ (it’s always easier with girls)

12. queens of the stone age – go with the flow: i was so limp and melancholic, til it drove me mad

13. london blackmarket – checkmate: i actually suspect my passion was helped along by the looks of the vocalist. but we’ll never know for sure, and i maintain the song is awesome and his voice also is special and…yeah. (also, an apt background music for ‘reprieve’, i mean)

14. against me! – we laugh at danger (and break all the rules) : THIS IS WHAT I WOULD LIKE TO SING IF I WERE IN A BAND. i miss offspring, i freakin miss early green day and…uh-oh there was a band called h-blockx. god i might have to go NOW and youtube them. but in the meantime:

15. fleet foxes – white winter hymnal : a tiny sinister song. over and over, like waiting for the rain to stop cause otherwise you’ll die this second.or the next for sure.

16. antony & the johnsons – cripple and the starfish : yes yes yes exactly

17. lucinda williams – sweet side: i was house-sitting on the drive, and somehow everything was nice but nothing was meaningful enough…or something. like when you expect an epiphany and get a cup of tea. well epiphanies are overrated anyway.

so this was my winter/spring ’09.

to get this out of the way (of the real music post)

decembrie 15, 2009

this is a collection of youtubes for my favourite adam lambert songs off his album. just because i think it’s fair to not mix this into my separate „music of 2009” post. i am bad at defending…whatever, whatever, ok, here goes:

1. broken open (yeah i know what he said about not wanting to be political, but once you put it out there i’m sorry for you if you think you can stop this from happening. well not really.)

2. master plan (which totally shouldn’t have been a b-side dammit)

3. sleepwalker (ear.worm.sappy.ear.worm. and, some of the video i actually liked ngl)

4. sure fire winners (if i actually did power walks or morning workout)

5. fever (i love lady gaga more than i hate bad french okay)