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the island of conclusions

mostly bookish

the island of conclusions

bright star

mostly bookish

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bright star
Usually, when I have a free Sunday morning, I try to get up reasonably early (~7:30) and go to Mysore. But this weekend I practiced the yoga pose of sleep. I was out latish Sat. night at a work-related dinner, and then up even later finishing my purimgifts fic, and so didn’t go to sleep until 1:30. I woke up at 7:30 or so, and thought screw this. And I didn’t wake up again until 10:30. Can’t remember the last time I did that. It might have been in high school.

Anyway, 28 hours of freedom is not so much when you spend 9 sleeping and 4 at a work dinner, so I hardly caught up at all on TV. I did watch, out of curiosity, the House episode in which Jeremy Renner plays a dissolute rock singer. And enjoyed it very much—I forgot how much I like S4 House and I don’t think I’d seen that one before.

Nor did I realize that this image, that you see all the time on the interwebz, if from House of all things!

Also Grimm

In which I very much enjoyed the appearance of Titus Welliver and Sasha Roiz’s bare chest.

I can’t say I felt the same way about the “revelation” that Hitler was a Wessen. Call me old-fashioned, but I really think pretending that some kinds of evil aren’t 100% human is a moral dodge—and it queasily reminded me of how much of Nazi rhetoric involved calling other people animals or subhuman.

Still, I’m not too worked up about it, since Grimm still seems to have such gentleness at its heart. I loved that even though Hank went a little nutty when he was holding the coins, he still gave them up and went home. And then Nick gave him such an earnest “how’re you feeling?” when he showed up at work the next day with a cup of coffee and an apology for his partner.

Have two book recs, though (both about doctors, as it turns out).

My Own Country, by Abraham Verghese.

This is a memoir, written in the 90s, of the author’s years as an infectious disease specialist in Johnson City, TN (pop. 50,000). Which is to say, it's about his years treating AIDS in small town Appalachia before there was any kind of drug management on the horizon. I started reading it for work-related reasons, but I kept on because it’s one of the most affecting books I’ve read for a long time. Partly, that’s because it’s about a part of the world that’s more rural (and whiter) than where I live, but still very close, and Verghese’s deep affection for this adopted “country,” combined with his acute eye for the difficulties of living there as an outsider (whether as an Indian doctor, or a person with AIDS) really spoke to me. And he really lets you in on the thought processes that allowed him to form such empathetic relationships with his patients, while at the same time not shying away from the costs of practicing that kind of medicine. (It is also very sad, as you’d expect of a book about AIDS in the ‘80s).

State of Wonder, by Ann Patchett

Okay, this one I listened to while driving and running. The plot line is a little preposterous, and the ending is a bit rushed, but I can recommend it to you for the following reasons.

*It’s a version of Heart of Darkness where all the parts are played by girls. (Sometimes, Patchett pretends it’s a version of Orpheus and Euridice instead, but Heart of Darkness works better). This turns out to be a great idea, just as a thought experiment—her try at a female Kurtz is particularly fun.

*It’s a book about women over 40 where the main plot is not romantic. It’s about intellectual/professional mentorship, ethics, and what bravery looks like for women. You just don’t see that too much. And this is very well done.

*It’s a great book if you like jungles, especially of the South American variety. It’s not such a great book if you don’t like epic scenes about snakes or un-anesthetized field surgery.

(I can also put it on my short list of novels about malaria, though the malaria plot line in this isn’t particularly well-worked out).

Even though I'm going to be out of town from basically March 23rd to April 1, I signed up for remix again. Possibly stupidly.
  • I keep hearing about remix. And think it is relevant to my interests. What is the community name? I want to check this out. Unless I missed sign ups?
    • It's remix_redux and sign-ups just started. I've found it really challenging to remix things, but mostly in a good way. Go check it out!

      • Do you have to be a member to see recent posts? All I'm seeing is stuff from 2007...
        • oops, sorry, this is what you want:


          the sign-ups are on AO3, though, like Yuletide.
          • Looks like the only fandom I qualify for (that's on the list) is Fringe.

            I am feeling pretty down though. :D

            Thanks for pointing me in this awesometastic direction.
            • Down like you're down to do it, not down like sad, right?

              Just b/c you only qualify in Fringe doesn't mean you'll end up writing Fringe, or even that you have to write it. Once you're matched with someone, you can choose from just about everything they've written.
  • In which I very much enjoyed the appearance of Titus Welliver and Sasha Roiz’s bare chest.

    I was enjoying the episode immensely for those two things.

    Call me old-fashioned, but I really think pretending that some kinds of evil aren’t 100% human is a moral dodge

    This. It's dishonest. But we seem to like pretending we're not really capable of the truly horrible things. We have to be mad, or possessed, or a demon!
    • Those were good things. Titus Welliver does that kind of can-you-trust-him-or-not character so well, and Renard stalking around his ultra-modern apartment in states of undress should have been ridiculous, but was actually kind of hot.

      We do like it. And even complaining about it makes me feel like my dad, who used to yell at me every time he caught be watching Hogan's Heroes because the Nazis were not buffoons, they were evil. But still.
      • Renard stalking around his ultra-modern apartment in states of undress should have been ridiculous, but was actually kind of hot.

        Lol! Yes, stalking around, watching himself in the mirror. It should have been far more silly than distracting. But Sasha just makes stuff work.
        • He does make stuff work--and he was also working some stuff ;)

          Looking forward to seeing more of that work and stuff.
  • I had no idea about the origins of that pic. House--who knew? I am currently 2 episodes into The Unusuals & enjoying him there.
    • I know--I just about did a double take when I saw that top shot come up in the opening scene of House!

      I've watched maybe 8/10 episodes of The Unusuals and am enjoying far more than I thought I would. It's reconciling me to a more cuddly Renner. Though he still has that I-should-really-be-in-charge-of-this-shit vibe I like so much. (plus, I totally dig his sexy times with his gf in the show)

      (Have you seen the cowboy-with-a-whip!Renner in the Pink vid that's been circulating on tumblr?)
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