1a. Eleanor & Park. Read on the heels of my wife's finishing it. An utterly unique teenage love story set in the 1980s between two bus riding, comic book reading, music obsessed opposites who trip into like and then love and experience all the hurdles and complications that go along with trying to make things work. Hilarious, brutal, sweet, poignant, thought-provoking, unforgettable. Thanks Countess - and for the original recommend from our favourite library assistant
Nice writing & reading, Rainbow Rowell.
1b. Dr. Seuss's The Sneetches. Like many of his, such a whimsical and powerful story, this time about fitting in, keeping up with the Joneses, and looking on the inside...but the recurring question is regarding the ethical motivation of Sylvester McMonkey McBean. He helps them learn a valuable lesson...and he also takes off with all their money. So is he a humanistic capitalist taking advantage of an opportunity to mutually benefit multiple parties; one of those parties being himself? Or is he a Barnum-esque rogue out for a scam and a buck? Or is he a deeper villain than I give him credit for and any benefit he brought to the Sneetches was merely tertiary and incidental?
I don't know, and I probably kept our son up too late reading this at bedtime and trying to figure out an answer. He's not sure either.
2. Old motorcycles with sidecars.
3. Minotaurs. I have told the children the tale of Theseus and Ariadne so many times, but it never gets old. I've actually written my own modernistic neo-magical realistic interpretation of it.
4. Watching people share food with their pets. I realise what I'm about to say will probably be offensive to some, but I'm going to plow ahead anyway and get this out: I think it's gross to share food back and forth with most animals. I've seen one too many four-leggeds drinking out of a toilet, or eating other creatures' fecal matter* (or their own) to like the idea of sharing my food with a living being whose ideas about personal hygiene are different than mine. Do I eat sloppy seconds off my children's slobber-infested, mashed-up mess of a plate on occasion? Yes. And that's probably gross to some** of you, and also allows you to screech at my hypocrisy. So be it.
But In the same sense that I enjoy watching other people do dangerous things that I have no intention of actually doing, I also enjoy watching (in this particular case) a ripped t-shirt man stand outside his truck window and swap licks of a Popsicle with his dog. Who, in fairness to him***, appeared to have a greater interest in bathing than his owner. Far be it from me to judge.****
Please don't unfriendly me over this. If there is something I'm completely missing about this scenario then let me know.
5a. Chevelle. The Chicago triad of brothers I used to listen to a decade ago but somehow slipped off my radar and are now way back on it. Heavy, experimental but melodic, feels like they picked up where Tool was a while back and kept on trying stuff out, but with a slightly less nihilistic worldview. Why not jump into them with a listen to one of their hits a while back? : The Red. A worthy companion to Jimmy Eat World's The Middle.
5b. Wanting hot weather, and then actually enjoying it when it does get hot instead of grumbling about how it's too hot. I think it's cool to be happy about something you've wished for. If you've never wished for hot weather while we're stuck in the middle of winter, then you're absolved. But if you've grumbled about the cold, and wanted it to get hot, and then when it gets hot, you grumble about the heat, well, that probably represents some sort of karmic dissatisfaction with life that you should figure out. Or else just buy one of those hats with a battery powered fan on it.
****sorry, am judging heavily