Monthly Archives: July 2013

Re-Post: The Look of Books

This is the last re-post from my blog “Look What I Found”. It’s about books that are works of art in and of themselves.

Now I have to decide if I will close the blog down, or just let it sit until I can work up a more coherent content curation strategy. I’ll also need more hours in a day.

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This Bible from the 1600s, with drawers for storing poisons, was curated on Scoop.it! by Chris Lott. It’s featured on a blog about life in 16th and 17th century England called Shakespeare’s England.

Image of a bible dating to 1600 which contains a secret arsenal of poison.

I wanted to share it on Pinterest, but I didn’t have an appropriately themed pin board. I created a new board and called it Unusual Objects because this book is certainly unusual. I  thought I’d find other unusual objects to pin, so I Googled the words “unusual objects.”  I found some interesting things but nothing as cool as this book, so I decided  to change the name of the board to Unusual Book Binding.

Now I’m on the lookout for examples of books that are funky, weird, artsy, well– unusual. I started my search on Pinterest.

This book, created using a Japanese binding technique, was pinned by Mariel “Maya” to the board  Bookbinding and Handmade Books. It lives on the fourth floor of the Jackson Library at the University of North Carolina, Greensboro.

Book bound using Japanese book binding technique
Found at Books are Fun blog.

This heart shaped book, also pinned by Mariel “Maya”, is supposed to be the oldest Danish ballad manuscript.  It can be found in the The Royal Library Manuscript Department at the National Library of Denmark and Copenhagen  University Library.

danish heart
“Heart Book” Said to be the oldest Danish ballad manuscript.

Check out Mariel’s pin board to see more interesting and artful books, and do a Pinterest search on “bookbinding” to find more.

Mariel "Maya" -Bookbinding & Handmade Books
Bookbinding & Handmade Books

I’ll be adding more to my Unusual Book Binding pin board, so stop by from time to time.

Pop Culture in a Bucket

I’ve been listening to a podcast called the Pop Culture Happy Hour. It’s “NPR’s entertainment and pop culture round-table podcast” about movies, books, television, nostalgia, and “what’s making us happy this week.”

I wasn’t sure if I’d enjoy it, but the more I listen, the more I like. Listening to the show feels like a guilty pleasure. I mean, with all of the stuff going on in the world, how can I sit around and listen to people talk about the latest Star Trek movie, or the new episodes of Arrested Development? I think I do need to listen to that kind of talk because it interests me.  It makes happy, and it makes me feel more connected to the culture I live in, and to people who think like me.

We all need to be entertained don’t we?

This feels like a post that could be in-depth, may even quasi-scholarly. I want to go into detail about my relationship  to pop culture. I want to discuss what it’s like to be the child of older parents who listened to Sinatra and Nat King Cole rather than the Beatles. I want this post to be really well written. It ‘s not going to be like that.

For now, this will just be a simple journal entry that I can come back to one day. I  can read it and remind myself of who I was on July 26, 2013.  I can use it as fodder for a bigger and better writing project. In fact, I’m going to create a Fodder category so I can keep track of posts that had the makings of something grander.

Back to the podcast…

They talked about Saturday  Night Live, and it made me want to go back and watch a bunch of SNL sketches.  They mentioned Mr. Show too.  I haven’t watched a lot of that one, but I’d like  to.

Some people have bucket lists of places they want to go and things they want to see. I’m starting to create a list of tv shows and movies to watch, and comic books to read. What does that say about me, I wonder?

The problem with bucket lists is that you need some leisure time to get through them.  I don’t have much of that, but i’ll do what I can. That’s all I can do after all.

PS: The term ‘bucket list’ is over used as far as I’m concerned, but here I am using it anyway. Such hypocrisy!

Bucket o fun

Humidity and Horrible People

I feel like I want to give up. I just don’t want to go on with this charade. Is it because of the all horrible people in the world, or is it the humidity?

Every time I turn on the tv, or get on Facebook, I’m confronted with stories of hate, greed, and just plain stupidity. I’m afraid that all of this noise washing over me is starting to seep into my pores. It’s invading my bones. I find myself hating the people I accuse of being haters. I don’t want to be that person. I want to rise above it, but right now I just don’t feel like rising. I feel like sitting down in the middle of the sidewalk and crying. That could be because of the humidity. Humidity makes you so tired doesn’t it?

This is just a funk that I’m going through. It may be because the days are getting shorter. When the first day of summer comes, I start feeling like it’s all over. You’d think I’d have enough sense to enjoy the warm days that are still to come, instead of dreading winter’s inevitable arrival. You would think that wouldn’t you?

Sometimes I think I should stop writing and instead focus on photography. I should make stories with images. I think that would be moore difficult than it sounds. I like words, I like pictures, I like music. I guess I can’t be that depressed if I still like things.

I didn’t think I would write anything this evening. I did write, and I’m glad of it.

I dreamed the other night of a clogged toilet. I had to reach into it and pull out the objects that didn’t belong and were causing the clog. There’s probably some deep meaning to that. Should I be plucking the things out of my life that are blocking my flow? I don’t like the word flow, but it will have to do for now.

20130722-190544.jpg

Writing and Then Stopping- Issue #1

I don’t think I was meant to write fiction.  I’ve begun a lot of pieces, and then quit them.  Am I lazy, or do I just not like writing fiction? It’s probably a little bit of both. Anyway, I’m going to share some of my unfinished pieces here, just so they can see the light of day. Maybe someone will get a bit of enjoyment out of them.  Maybe some will get frustrated at the lack of endings. Most of these pieces probably don’t even have middles for that matter. In any case, these pieces give me something to post when I don’t feel like coming up with something new. Here’s the first one!

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At the Door

Cynthia stood with her back to the door, removed her glasses and hurriedly wiped the lenses with the cuff of her black palazzo pants. She put the glasses back on took them off again and rubbed her eyes. She put the glasses on again and then squinted in earnest concentration. She closed her eyes, took a deep breath, looked again and finally decided to accept that she and her eyes were seeing what they thought she was seeing. “I’ve finally gone schizophrenic.” she said. “I knew it was bound to happen. It’s genetic, and I’ve got the gene.” She pushed her chair away from the kitchen table, got up and reached for the yellow pages thinking she’d call a doctor and get herself checked in to some facility designed to take care of people like her. She wondered “are there people like me?”

If there were indeed people like Cynthia, those people saw things. They saw things that shouldn’t be there, things that just didn’t make sense. It had happened on each of the past three days. The doorbell of her little yellow house would ring. Cynthia didn’t often get unexpected visitors so on that first day she assumed it must be the mailman or a door-to-door religion salesman. She crept quietly to the door and looked out the peephole, but she could only see what looked like long brown hair. She decided it was probably safe to open the door. What she saw on the other side was large and baffling. It was a horse. Not a toy horse, not a saw horse. An actual horse with hooves and fur and a long brown mane and a hat. Cynthia looked at the horse and decided that, given the circumstances, it couldn’t hurt to ask the horse what he was doing on her front porch. “Wh what are you doing on my front porch?”

The horse snorted, and for a moment, Cynthia thought he was going to speak. He didn’t. He just looked at her. It dawned on Cynthia that this must be a joke. Maybe she was a victim of one of those practical joke TV shows and soon someone would reveal the hidden camera and ask her to sign a release allowing them to share her horse encounter with viewers all over the country. No one appeared. Cynthia looked at the horse. He looked back at her winked. Winked?

“Did you just wink at me?” she asked.

The horse remained laconic. The neighborhood was silent

“So if this isn’t a TV show it must be a dream.” She told the horse. “I’m going to close the door, go lay down and try to wake up.”

The horse snorted again as the door began to close. Cynthia took one last look at the horse and said “Bye, horse.”

The Yellow Pages lists sellers of goods and services that you may or may not need during the course of your life and as Cynthia leafed through the phone book she began to lose site of what she was supposed to be looking for. She spent some time looking at the ads for Bathtubs, Contractors, Dentists, Fences and Roofing because the thought of calling a psychologist, or psychiatrist or whatever and announcing that a winking horse rang her doorbell made her almost as anxious as seeing the horse. Not knowing anything about psychology she decided to close her eyes and point to something on the book. She would call the number where her finger landed.

Door

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