January 26, 2010

expanding the awesome

listening to the new air album, eating toast (part of a complete breakfast including apple and trusty fish pill - only small fish so toxins are fewer) and drinking tea. i stayed out all night and crashed at the gnomes, then booted it home this morning to discover my illustrious roommate had fed the dogs breakfast as well as left me some cash for groceries and a tupperware of "real hungarian gulyas" which i shall be heating up later. have i nicknamed my roommate yet? if not, he is now the chef. anyone who makes gluten-free cheesecake is a chef in my eyes. and his sushi! i am a vehement fan. i have no doubt the goulash shall be awesome.

the air album, love 2, is mellower, more aged than some of their other stuff (and where it isn't mellow, i'm like "oh guys, just embrace your age. it's okay to be refining what you do. you don't have to learn new tricks"). it's odd finding enjoyment from musicians getting older. i remember discovering the later works of my parents' generation of musicians, and being upset that they had converted from being hard rock musicians to what i dubbed 'easy listening'. now that i'm aging with the musicians, i have more empathy with the desire for mellow. good music ages well, and bad music goes away eventually. i'm generally a fan of this album, but i haven't fallen in love with it.

last night was kind of epic. should i start with the drunken punching at the bookstore? my first time filling out a statement for the police! or should i, since the story is tawdry and predictable (except for the bit where the drunk guy was trying to hide behind me from the other guy, seeing as i'm all of 5'5 and maybe 130lbs. that part is funny), skip right to the pub where i caught up with a couple of co-workers, although one of them flew home almost immediately after i got there. yes, i like that part of the night better, let's talk that one up.

the remaining co-worker had recently gone through some romantic changes in her life and, for whatever reason, scored a number of free drinks from the bartender (our staff are regulars, and the bartender in question is a regular at our store). she was rather well fortified with whiskey when i arrived. as we drank, we discussed the role of fate in our lives. fate plays a pretty epic role in her life. she doesn't rely on a big helping hand or anything; she regularly makes her own plans. but the big things she gets done are often shaped by seemingly meaningless events, like her dad getting sick while on vacation leading her to fall in love with a certain european campus and then going there as a student. had he never gotten sick, she would not have noticed how perfect the campus was for her. this inspired us to detail out a list titled "measures of fate"

- illness
- death
- falling in love
- empty seats
- missing the bus/train/plane
- other people's plans changing
- other people's relationships
- platonic crushes

platonic crushes came as an epiphany for both of us. we detailed out how many platonic crushes we had turned into romantic relationships (cuz society claims that as the gold medal of relationships, so if you can, you should, right?) and ended up the poorer for it. such a fount of richness, crammed into the wrong vessel. i vow to tell my platonic crushes how awesome they are.

i haven't updated what i've been reading lately. i had a craving for roddy doyle (a fondness for the irish, what can i say) and picked this up. it's great if you've forgotten what bastards our society churns out. doyle really works at hearing the main character. i am impressed when men can portray victims of male violence without making it about men (not that the responsibility lies anywhere else, but i mean the story and the voice). he let it be her experience. and i'm the richer for it.

i've also been reading a collection of book reviews by freeman dyson called "the scientist as rebel". it's very readable and occasionally fascinating. it doesn't teach any science, just describes parts of history where scientists have been very influential, for example, nuclear physics and the nasty bomb. if you want to learn about specific scientists, dyson seems very well-read and describes other books quite well. he can set you on the right path for the kind of information you're looking for.

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