Bookish (and not so Bookish) Thoughts

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1. Yesterday I was looking up a Colson Whitehead event at UCLA next spring and discovered that Zadie Smith and Michael Chabon were giving a talk tomorrow! I have never seen either of them and immediately started trying to figure out how I could bribe Sawyer into behaving for an event that started at his bedtime in a city that would require a 90+ minute drive thru traffic to get to. I mentioned it to Scott, who now works ten minutes away, and he said that I could drop him off at his office with the iPad and headphones and they would make it work for the last hour or so of my husband’s day. I hesitated for approximately twelve seconds and then bought the best ticket I could find. I’m so very excited (although also sad because my normal book-reading buddy can’t come with me).

2. I’m teaching sixteen Sylvia Plath poems over the course of twelve days. It’s like a marathon, but worse. I have a very systematic way of guiding my students through the work, though (read/annotate alone for ten minutes, collaborate with a group for ten minutes, and then discuss as a class for fifteen, before working on it the rest of the way alone at home), so I hope that we’ll all get in the groove.

3. I started reading Like Water for Chocolate and while I’m at the very beginning, I can already tell I am going to enjoy it. Magical realism is one of my favorite genres.

4. Can you believe in God but not the afterlife? Asking for a friend (who might be an atheist anyway).

5. Fact: when I have gift cards for clothing stores I cannot find anything I like (but when it’s my own money I find plenty). Fact: when I am bursting at the seams with blog ideas I have no time to write (but when I have time to write I have no ideas).

6. The last day of school before winter break my classes are having our first bracket of a time-based Scrabble tournament. I’m not even playing and I’m super excited. It actually might be a disaster- the kids are excited and willing, but they don’t know how to play. We’re also doing it in groups of six, as opposed to four, and we’ll only have about thirty-five minutes that day to play. But whatever. It’ll still be a fun, relaxed way to end break, since the next few weeks are consumed by Madame I Put My Head in an Oven.

7. I mapped out my grading calendar for the next three weeks, and if I am extremely diligent I can leave for our three week vacation being totally caught up. It’s probably not realistic, but I am implemented several ridiculous progress checks connected to bribes to make it happen (pedicure… massage… Peanut Butter Shake from Sonic…. I AM A GLUTTONOUS MONSTER). When we come back in January we have one regular week and then finals, so if I’m not in a good position I’ll be hating life.

8. My car accident has been resolved in less than a month- thank you Mercury! My insurance found the other driver at fault and they wanted to assign both of us 50%. My claims adjuster pressed them and they took on half of my half, which we are accepting. I get half of my deductible back, which I had kissed good bye, and my rates won’t be impacted. Good enough.


  1. Great news about the car accident...and how awesome that you worked it out to see Zadie Smith and Michael Chabon.

  2. Enjoy that event! It’s so nice when stuff like that works out — instead of say, finding that the event was yesterday which is usually what happens to me lol