Reading continued…slowly

Posted June 15, 2010 by janiceb
Categories: Uncategorized

Yes, finally finished The Girl Who Played with Fire — quite the page puncher (what do you do on a Kindle?). Have re-started Too Big to Fail, which just didn’t seem like holiday-reading fare. What makes it especially fun to read is the article that I read last week at the gym in someone’s left-behind Rolling Stone — Matt Taibbi’s piece called “Wall Street’s Naked Swindle.” The good -ol Rolling Stone pit bull journalism, but sure does point fingers at all the scoundrels on Wall Street in a new light. (I am sorry that RS didn’t reproduct Victor Juhasz’s other illustration of hyenas in business suits picking over the bones of, well, us).

How do you find time to read? I was jealous of Churbuck’s realization that a vacation lets you read — instead of moving that hosta or deadheading that petunia or weeding that vegetable garden, you have nothing else to do but sit and read. That’s the way to do it. Declare Vacation Day at home.


New idea

Posted May 8, 2010 by janiceb
Categories: My Weekly eReader

Tags: , ,

I know Janice on Cape Ann has drifted out to sea, but I have another idea and I figured I’d start it here. I want to pull together a “My Weekly e-Reader” with reviews and related links to what I and others are reading on their ereading devices.

For the trip to Argentina, I got a Kindle — what a great way to carry a variety of books along for a long trip! I’m sure in a year or two I’ll be laughing at its primitiveness, but I enjoy reading on it. It’s not how I’d want to go at one of my garden or design magazines or, heaven forbid try to read Ken Druse’s lush book Planthropology on it, but it fits a need. If I were commuting again instead of drving, it’d be my constant companion.

I dithered about getting the Kindle until I realized that I didn’t have to buy the entire Lonely Planet: Argentina — we’d already used the book to plan the trip. Instead, I could download just the chapters I wanted: Buenos Aires and Patagonia. Oh, and you can read first chapters of books for free. That I really love.

Since coming home, I devoured Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand, a first novel by British expat Helen Simonson. Read if you’re an Anglophile!

I re-upped my subscription for One Story: Great little magazine of just one story every month or so. A check of mine to resubscribe had gone missing in the mail a few years ago and I just never got around to getting check, envelope and stamp together in one place. But now it’s delivered directly to Kindle.

What are you ereading?

Been a while…

Posted May 6, 2010 by janiceb
Categories: Uncategorized

What can I say? I went on vacation: Argentina. For just about all of February.  Nice!

Only the biggest fish we caught all week!

Fireplace! At last!

Posted December 13, 2008 by janiceb
Categories: Uncategorized

I finally get my fireplace!! So what if it’s cardboard — you got a problem with that?


Mrs. Bloom

Posted October 16, 2007 by janiceb
Categories: Uncategorized

Jackie’s mom died yesterday. Jackie was my bestest friend in high school and Jackie’s mom was, well, the bestest mom. Because Jackie’s parents were divorced, my mother would insist I invite Jackie over for some “mothering,” which Mom figured anyone with divorced parents would need. But I was the one who needed mothering, and I got it from Mrs. Bloom.

I have a complete phobia of needles. Hate ’em. Terrified. Reduced to melted Jell-O around ’em. When I heard I needed a blood test to get married, I nearly called the whole thing off. That kind of phobia. But this, like most things, I reasoned, should be controllable. So I saw a doctor who tried a treatment called EMDR that’s really a mind game. Part of it involves imagining someone comforting you through the icky times. “Who would that person be?” asked the doc. In a flash: Mrs. Bloom. And now whenever I have to get blood drawn (as seldom as possible but more often than I’d like) or a shot (nearly never if I can help it), she’s by my side and I don’t feel so scared. I just think of her and I feel…stronger.

She had Alzheimer’s for years. Early on there were times she would ask about me. Jackie moved her closer to her in NH last April. I asked if I could visit, but Jackie, wisely, thought I’d be better off remembering her mom as I did from high school.

Jackie said even though her mother lost her memory and her bearings, she never lost being loving. Or loved. Which, I guess, it what it’s all about.


Posted October 9, 2007 by janiceb
Categories: Uncategorized

Aren’t children great? Ain’t it greater when other people have them?

Summer’s Over

Posted September 26, 2007 by janiceb
Categories: Uncategorized

1. No eggplant this year. Lousy year in general for all the hot-weather-lovers. Cabbage? Kale? Cauliflower? Happy as cruciforms!

2. Still at it with AT&T! Nine months, one Better Business Bureau report, 2 phone assurances from AT&T command that “You’ll never receive another bill from us,” and lo, a mysterious $14 with a monthly 20 cents penality for not paying. Good luck, iPhoners.

3. Niece Sarah at Northeastern (with my laptop til yesterday when hers finally got fixed).

4. Still loving Helium. How weird is that! Janice = Happy. Too much.

5. And because life is cruel: We lost Lorraine. She’d been in hospice care for about 2 weeks, so one steels one’s nerves. Which fail when the inevitable email comes.

So who was Lorraine? She was my girly-girl shopping buddy. She had a weakness for Chestnut Hill Mall, so we’d scour around shops-for-shrimps in Eileen Fisher, Sigrid Olsen and the like. Lorraine didn’t need an occasion to buy a pretty something (I don’t part with my pelf unless I know precisely when and where I’ll be required to wear new garments). So we’re wandering through one of those frightening make-up sections in some big department store. Argh, I said, the only thing I ever wear is lipstick.

“Lipstick!” Lorraine said, “I just remembered I need some. Let’s look. We’ll buy you one.”

I don’t know, I demurred, lipsticks always change color on me or look weird.

“Nonsense. I will find you something.” And Lorraine charged ahead to the Chanel counter, where she seemed to be intimately familiar with every shade and style. She tried on a few, looking perfect in each, smiling at herself in the mirror with the world’s most beautiful teeth (what can I say, her teeth were gorgeous), then plucked one out for me. “This,” she said, “will be perfect on you.”

Me being me, I looked at the price first.

“Dear god, do you know how much this costs?” I yelped.

And Lorraine explained with her unimpeachable girly-girl logic: “Janice, it’s lipstick.”

So I bought it. I don’t wear it much. I’m not sure I really like the color. But I’m really really glad I have that lipstick. And that Lorraine was my friend.