Monday, April 24, 2017

That Awkward Moment

When I'm on break at my new job and some coworkers start having a conversation across the room about Don Quixote and I REALLY REALLY want to join in. 

Until the one actually reading Don Quixote disses it as "too long" and "basically the same joke over and over."

Then I REALLY REALLY REALLY want to join in and correct him in the error of  his ways:

He's totally wrong about Don Quixote. Unfortunately he fell into the same mistake of many modern readers, and saw the musical first. Man of La Mancha is about Cervantes, not an actual adaptation of the book! Now, while I agree some parts of Don Quixote do take the "joke" so far it's like beating a dead Rosinante, who says this book is only supposed to be about "jokes"? Satire is more than for chuckles and lolz.  It's about making a point, making one think.  I for one was fascinated by it. Not only does it have the laugh-out-loud moments one expects, but it also brings up some tough questions. Is it better to be sane like the other characters in the book, but not have any principles or desire for some higher standard of life? Is Don Quixote a pathetic character, or is he perhaps like Plato's metaphor of the cave, where the person who has escaped the dismal reality of servitude and darkness comes back to tell his fellow captives of this new wide world outside, only to be ridiculed as insane?

But I'm afraid that freaking out in a room full of practical-strangers-but-I-have-to-cultivate-a-good-working-relationship-with-them-I-suppose-even-if-it-means-betraying-one-of-my-favorite-works-of-literature-by-not-adequately-defending-its-myriad-of-virtues will not be considered copacetic.

So instead you shout across the room "NEXT TIME TRY CANDIDE.  IT'S SHORTER!"

(I'm sure he'll take my suggestion.)

He'd better.

Maybe I'll just shove a copy in his employee mailbox.  That's professional, right?

Or at least it's anonymous.

As long as he doesn't see me do it.

Or remember me yelling at him.

It wasn't really "yelling," it's just he was across the room and I  had to raise my voice to be sure he heard my valuable if somewhat unsolicited input.

I think I just became the Lady Catherine de Bourgh of bibliophiles.

But I'm alright with that.


Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Photo credit: moi
While  I have been on an involuntary sabbatical from my laptop and blogging, I have not been idle in the land of literature.  Here is a photo of my volunteer station at my local library, where as you can see I was putting protective laminate on extremely important classic tomes. 

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Greetings from Outside the Interwebs

Dear Blog –
I apologize for the radio silence.  I haven’t called, and what’s more accurate I haven’t written.
I can explain.  My laptop died unexpectedly.
Well, it may not be dead.  It just doesn’t turn on.  So although I have one more desperate measure I can take to recover my data (most of it should be backed up anyway), the possibility of its full resuscitation and recovery is dubious.
What have I done in my absence from you?
Lots of things, actually. Of course my laptop died before I did my taxes, so I had to borrow a computer to do that.  And the tentative search for new computers to purchase has been slow because, well, to do the research to buy a new computer I kind of need a working computer to do the research.  It’s a futile cycle.
But aside from that
I’ve been settling into my new job as receptionist/copy editor/article writer.  Yes, you read that last part right.  Article writer.  My place of employ is in the medical field, so it’s not exactly what I’d imagined my first publication to be.  It was, however, a good test of my writing in general; I’ve always thought that a good writer should be able to write on any topic.  So when my boss asked me to write an article on “Valley Fever,” a disease I’d not so much as heard of, much less experience or foreknowledge, this was a challenge.  As of now it’s in the long cycle of fact-check > revision > proofread > revision, running the gauntlet of managers, other writers, and medical professionals.  But I hope to see it available to the public at large in the near future!
Of course I have been reading.  In fact, with my Sunday afternoons free of the usual Blog Writing Session, I’ve gotten quite a bit more reading done than usual.  I don’t have time or space here to list them, but I’m pretty excited to start pumping out more reviews.  Especially since, as another aspect of my new job, I’ve been amassing a few more web-writer skills and am eager to spiff up this blog a bit with what I’ve learned.
So, as I have time, and as my technological situation improves, I am looking forward to catching up with you! 
Farewell for now!