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Skinny Dipping Into Books

I like the rain. I want to have a spring bookworming rain party full out with wellies—but not those Hunter Boots; absolutely not—, with yummy airy things like puffed pastries, meringues, mini fluffy cheese cakes, mousse dessert, macaroon, biscuits, crepe, and Earl Grey tea, definitely Earl Grey tea.  and Tillandsia. We'd have lots of "air plants". Lots! And We'd read, but not anything structured. We'd bring books, trade books, read out-loud, pass books around between sentences and paragraphs. We'd leave with books we hadn't discovered.


I like books like I like my Jazz; euphoric, dangerous, occasionally a bit manic, sorrowful, bleak, raging, mood-incongruent, mournful, unforgivingly ragged, symbolic in a quiet way, warm apple pie for the soul. Give me a Plath style. Yōko Ogawa, M. Roach,

Criteria: Not rated on likability of characters. Not objective. I like Moxie Soda; chances are you don't.

time spent in that before bed reading slot:

5-until blurry eye 4-Later than I intended, but I still kept to my extended, extended reading time 3-I really should have been to bed an hour ago  2-customary 30 minutes. 1-book. side table. eyes closed.

How are common themes handled?

5-With an aesthetic that repurposes everyday themes into something fresh. Think of Hole Celebrity Skin covered by Cat Power  4-there is a comfortable air of familiarly.
3-Deja Vu 2. No deviation from its mates  1. Devastatingly trite, redundant, and stale.

Where would you keep it post-reading?

5-Next to my bed.  4-it's the center piece of my favorite bookshelf 3. On my other favorite bookshelf, but it's a bit dusty over their 2-Great cheap bookends 1-It never made it out of the box marked 'moving'.

Emotional response-

5- Where is my teddy bear? Emotional-hangover 4- If I wasn't so emotionally stunted I'd cry.
3. Did James Cameron co-wrote this? Artfully contrived. 
2- calculative emotional manipulation. This was literally written by James Cameron.1- I…feel…..nothing.

Mechanics (plot structure, voice, presentation, word choice, sentence structure, characters, writing style, pacing, and consistency):

5-Chanel 4-Prada 3-J-Crew 2-Gap 1-Old Navy

Currently reading

The Complete Stories
Flannery O'Connor
I am No One You Know
Joyce Carol Oates
Unclean Jobs for Women and Girls
Alissa Nutting, Alissa Nutting

oooo gross.. bodies in side and out.

Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers - Mary Roach

"The human body has two ends on it: one to create with and one to sit on. Sometimes people get their ends reversed. When this happens they need a kick in the seat of the pants." Theodore Roosevelt

4.5 until i can compare it to other writings by the same author

So why does one read this sort book? cocktail parties and any sort of social interaction. Its content is morbid, educational, and sometimes down right gross. The author supplies a fact, analysis its context, setting, and other elements, then often distracts with funny lines that are suppose to lighten up the stuff you read previous. It often works. I laughed a few times even over the human decomp section. Sometimes it doesn't work. Sometimes it feels forced and sometimes it even outright diminishes what she cited/wrote about in previous sections. There is a thin line between too much humor and not enough in books like this. I do like the idea that its implemented throughout, because i wouldnt want to read the sort of stuff that she must, and says she reads to make these books.

This book is not suppose to be heavily research based, nor is it light reading for a beach (unless you want to get parents making wide loops around your towel, covering their child(rens) faces, and giving you looks of disapproval; something i would do. But this is not a research article. It isn't quaint, relaxed, read in bed (though i did) sorta reading. It sorta bounces back and forth between the two. The footnotes are what really drags on, and ill admit i skipped most of them. I wasn't out to read something that would pull too much into the academic side. Though the heavy emphasis on research, and the sarcastic elements may turn people off. Dont even pick it up if this isn't something you enjoy. I have read that some people think this is boring because she highlights too much research. I love these reviews because the reviewer apparently lacked the common sense to read the book summary. there is also something laughable that these people are members of goodreads, but dont read even two reviews, which is bound to raise the issue of research.

It is a fast read though, and the prose and style of writing goes along quickly, with one area of concern. She is often frenetic, almost distracted, as if she got up for coffee, a trip to the loo, or maybe she is making lunch, like me right now. Regardless it seems that she leaps around between related (sometimes not related) topics back to back or even in the same paragraph. This works 80 percent of the time, but the other 20 i found myself a bit annoyed. Again, if you can't handle this, dont read it.

So would i read her stuff again? sure, in between serious works like me before you and flannery o'connor (as i am now). Right now I'm reading Bonk as sort of a vacation away from the serious, more substantial literature out there.

In the end, yes i have used a large majority of this book at social gatherings, and i like the wide eyed expressions on peoples faces, the fact they step back away, and the unique way it tends to end conversations you never wanted to have in the first place. 

The human head is of the same approximate size and weight as a roaster chicken. I have never before had occasion to make the comparison, for never before today have I seen a head in a roasting pan.

I agree with Dr. Makris. Does that mean I would let someone blow up my dead foot to help save the feet of NATO land mine clearers? It does. And would I let someone shoot my dead face with a nonlethal projectile to help prevent accidental fatalities? I suppose I would. What wouldn't I let someone do to my remains? I can think of only one experiment I know of that, were I a cadaver, I wouldn't want anything to do with. This particular experiment wasn't done in the name of science or education or safer cars or better-protected soldiers. It was done in the name of religion. 

Here's the other thing I think about. It makes little sense to try to control what happens to your remains when you are no longer around to reap the joys or benefits of that control. People who make elaborate requests concerning disposition of their bodies are probably people who have trouble with the concept of not existing. [...] I imagine it is a symptom of the fear, the dread, of being gone, of the refusal to accept that you no longer control, or even participate in, anything that happens on earth. I spoke about this with funeral director Kevin McCabe, who believes that decisions concerning the disposition of a body should be mad by the survivors, not the dead. "It's non of their business what happens to them whey the die," he said to me. While I wouldn't go that far, I do understand what he was getting at: that the survivors shouldn't have to do something they're uncomfortable with or ethically opposed to. Mourning and moving on are hard enough. Why add to the burden? If someone wants to arrange a balloon launch of the deceased's ashes into inner space, that's fine. But if it is burdensome or troubling for any reason, then perhaps they shouldn't have to.”

Some months back, I gave thought to becoming a skeleton in a medical school classroom. Years ago I read a Ray Bradbury story about a man who becomes obsessed with his skeleton. He has come to think of it as a sentient, sinister entity that lives inside him, biding its time until he dies and the bones slowly prevail. I began thinking about my skeleton, this solid, beautiful thing inside me that I would never see. I didn't see it becoming my usurper, but more my stand-in, my means to earthly immortality. 

oh and PS: thanks Mary, i have no idea now what to do with my body when i do... die Someone else can deal with it, i suppose. Im thinking about the whole recycling thing and making a tree out of me. this isnt any different than burning me and touching the ashes.... and really that isnt that helpful for the environment, as you will find out while reading this book.

draft that ill someday get to editing.