Sunday, October 22, 2006

Sunday Miscellany

I am having a wonderful Sunday morning, sitting outside, drinking coffee, and surfing the Internet. When I first sat down out here, it was only about 55 degrees and pleasantly windy. It has warmed up to about 60 now, but it is still gloriously cool, even for Houston on an October Sunday.

Yesterday, I got up early and drove to work (an hour away for those who aren't regular readers of this blog) to attend the dedication of our new school building. It was a surprisingly pleasant, rather understated affair. The four guest speakers, three of whom are normally quite verbose, stuck to their allotted time, all saying some great things about the faculty, staff, and students of the school. It actually made me feel rather proud of working there. Since I was there already, I did grade some papers after the ceremony, but for those of you who are long suffering readers of this blog, you know I had to be procrastinating on doing something else, right? :-)

I was putting off starting the midterm for my cataloging class. I didn't feel as prepared as I should be. To further procrastinate, I decided to stop for a late lunch and do some reading. In Houston, I don't think waitpersons are very bothered by solo diners who don't want to eat and run, but in a smaller community, I sometimes feel like the waitperson feels a bit uncomfortable serving a solo diner. I was enjoying my reading and my hamburger and didn't want to rush through my meal, but the waitress seemed to be bothered by me. She wasn't unpleasant, but she asked if I wanted a to go box when I had only eaten half my meal. When I finally said I was ready for the check, she seemed quite relieved to be able to give it to me.

I was reading The Polysyllabic Spree by Nick Hornby, which is a compilation of his books column in the Believer. Both Danielle at A Work in Progress and Sandra at Book World had praised Hornby's humorous columns. All of his columns begin with a list of books bought and books read during the previous month. I knew of Hornby's fiction--I had listened to About a Boy on tape and had read High Fidelity several years ago. I thought both novels were entertaining and humorous. I don't remember how humorous those books were, but if they were as funny as his Believer columns, then I'm sure I got some good laughs out of them.

Hornby is one of us--one of those people that buy more books than he will ever read. My only quibble with Hornby is that he doesn't like literary fiction which is my favorite genre. However, he does have a way of writing about what he reads that is extremely entertaining and true. I wish I could write about the books I read as effectively as he does. I feel rather inept here trying to write about my reading of his book containing his writing about books that he read.

I love what he says about his book collection:
"But as I was finding a home for them in the Arts and Lit non-fiction section (I personally find that for domestic purposes, the Trivial Pursuit system works better than Dewey), I suddenly had a little epiphany: all the books we own, both read and unread, are the fullest expression of self we have at our disposal. My music is me, too, of course--but as I only really like rock and roll and its mutations, huge chunks of me--my rarely examined operatic streak, for example--are unrepresented in my CD collection. And I don't have wall space or the money for all the art I would want, and my house is a shabby mess, ruined by children...But with each passing year, and with each whimsical purchase, our libraries become more and more able to articulate who we are, whether we read the books or not."

Recently, I blogged (or planned to blog--I'm too lazy to search my archives) about why I don't like to borrow books, give away books that I read, or sell books. I think that all the books I have read are a part of me and getting rid of a book means getting rid of a part of myself. So I must continue to buy books to better express who I am, right? :-)

One more thing about this book, the proceeds from the book are split between two non-profit organizations benefiting children, Treehouse and 826NYC. I didn't know this when I purchased the book, but I like the idea of my book buying/reading contributing to some worthwhile organizations.

Earlier in the post (I had no intention of making this post so long--sorry!), I mentioned my midterm. I did do most of it last night, and I wasn't as unprepared as I thought. I knew where to find the pertinent rules to help answer to the multiple choice questions, and I feel good about those 14 questions. The other three questions require the creation of complete records for three items. I did the first one last night, and I feel okay (not good, just okay--I hope partial credit will be given). After a break for a late night dinner with Valerie and Adrienne, I started the second one, but my energy flagged. But I know that I will finish today well before the midnight deadline.

Finally, surfing the Chronicle site this morning, I came across this article about a Paul Klee exhibit at the Menil. I am not familiar with Klee's work, but I think I have heard of him before. The photos of some of his works that accompany the article make me want to see this exhibit. I will have to put it on my to do list and on my calendar so that I don't wait too long to check it out.

Now, I have run on long enough. I hope you have a wonderful Sunday. Although they don't play until tomorrow, it is a Sunday in October, which means football for me, so I must say, Go Cowboys!!! :-)

1 comment:

Carl V. said...

I feel the same way about books in regards to borrowing/loaning them. Its like giving away a part of you to part with them for any reason. I do loan books to a precious few close friends who have the same reverance and love for books that I do but beyond that I don't allow mine to go anywhere!