I don’t know what it is about December, but there’s either too much to do or too little. This year I’ve decided to skip decorating for Christmas AND I’ve whittled down my activities to just a few. There is still a lot to do on the documentary, but I’m waiting on some images before work can progress.
The good news is, I finally have time to do all that reading I’ve been meaning to catch up on.
I have a stack of books on my night table… The first to leave just recently is the book by British author Lynn Truss: “Eats, Shoots, & Leaves.” It’s pretty light-reading, despite the fact that it’s about the state of puctuation today. I guess I should have laughed more, but sometimes British humor tends to elude me. I like dry humor as much as the next person, but some things in the book that people (I guess) find hilarious, I found merely amusing. Besides, I’m more of a grammar person myself. I tend to notice blantant grammerical problems more so than puctuation. For example, I see typos in the paper all the time. Once, at a gas station bathroom in southern Georgia, I actually began mentally correcting the graffiti I read on the wall.
“Eats, Shoots, & Leaves” is pretty good. It reminds you of how important puctuation is in our language, and how we should still learn it despite the fact that even experts disagree about how it should be used and that advertisers and marketers don’t know much about it. Anyway, Truss’ book was a fast read. I finished the second half in one afternoon.
What else is waiting in the stack of books? David Sedaris’ “Naked”, which a friend tells me is a wonderful way to get aquainted with the author. I’ve never read his work before, but it seems like, lately, that’s all anyone’s been talking about. I also have two Stephen J. Gould books. You know, that’s the author that religious conservatives hate for writing about evolution. I’ve already read one of his books, about the Cambrian explosion of creatures. It was really good. It was “Wonderful Life: The Burgess Shale and the Nature of History.” The ones I hope to read soon are “The Hedgehog, the Fox, and the Magister’s Pox” and “Triumph and Tragedy in Mudville: A Lifelong Passion for Baseball.” I’m also reading 2 other heavy books, for research: “The Osage and the Invisible World” and “Ancient North America.” My brother also just gave me Noam Chomsky’s latest, which he said was really eye-opening. Oh, and I’ve got one historical fiction, which is my favorite genre of literature: Rosalind Miles’ second installment of the Guenevere trilogy, “Knight of the Sacred Lake.” So far, I’ve found it to be pretty depressing. The book fuels my distruct of organized Christianity and my feminist side, and it makes me angry with the male-oriented dominance of the Western world. Her first Guenevere book was illuminating. It definetely takes Guenevere out of the side-lines of Authurian lore and present her side of the story from a viewpoint outside of Christianity. In many ways, the customs and sexual beliefs that Miles illustrates as being normal for Guenevere’s people are not that far from progressive thought in the Western World about feminine right to control her own body. It shows the struggle between the old religion of the Celts and their worship of the female with the “new” religion of the Christians, with their desire to supress the feminine, and replace the old female gods with one male one. HMMMMMMMM….