Today at the Asian Art Museum

The Asian Art Museum is astoundingly beautiful. Self only realized this today, when she actually went inside. She’s such a creature of habit: for a long time, she was mad that they moved from Golden Gate Park, for she loved wandering between the de Young and the Asian Art Museum and the Academy of Sciences.

She knew it was there, of course, standing right next to the San Francisco Main Library on Larkin Street.  But not once did she ever feel moved to step inside.  She’d look at it from the sidewalk and her overall impression would be one of heaviness, gray-ness. So unlike the MOMA, which is funky and cutting edge.

The closest she’d ever come to going to an exhibit there was the recent “Lords of Samurai” exhibit (ended Sept. 20, boo).  Ever since she discovered Kurosawa, and ever since son began to enjoy the novels of Lensey Namioka (nay, ever since she took Jeffrey Mass’s courses on the Japanese bakufu, at Stanford), she’s been fascinated by this aspect of Japanese culture. But she never actually made it inside the museum, until today.

October is Filipino American History Month (Which tireless groups worked to ensure that every October is a way for us to commemmorate our history?  Self would like to offer thanks to them, whoever and wherever they are).  Today was the first time that the Asian Art Museum undertook to host an all-day event celebrating Filipino American History Month, and self knows it took a lot of hard work and coordination between many many groups of people, but self thinks the bulk of the work was done by these three:
Read the rest of this entry »

NYTBR 27 September 2009: The Short List

Books self is interested in reading after perusing the September 27, 2009 issue of The New York Times Book Review:

1. After reading Susann Cokal’s review of Audrey Niffenegger’s novel, Her Fearful Symmetry:

2. After reading Edmund White’s review of Michael Greenberg’s Beg, Borrow, Steal: A Writer’s Life:

  • Michael Greenberg’s Beg, Borrow, Steal: A Writer’s Life

3. After reading Geoff Nicholson’s review of Bycicle Diaries, David Byrne’s account of riding his bike around in cities like London, Berlin, Buenos Aires and Manila:

  • David Byrne’s Bycicle Diaries

4. After reading Josh Bazell’s review of Tom Gilling’s new mystery, Seven Mile Beach:

  • Two earlier novels (“brilliant if occasionally precious”) by Tom Gilling: The Sooterkin and The Adventures of Miles and Isabel
  • Tom Gilling’s latest, Seven Mile Beach

5.    After reading Alison McCulloch’s review of Kate Grenville’s new novel, The Lieutenant:

  • Kate Grenville’s earlier novel (winner of the 2006 Commonwealth Writers’ Prize), The Secret River

6.    After reading Maria Russo’s short reviews in the Fiction Chronicle:

  • Jill McCorkle’s story collection, Going Away Shoes
  • Michelle Huneven’s novel about “a boozy college professor who wakes up one day in jail, having run down a mother and daughter with her car during an alcohol-induced blackout,” Blame

Better Late Than Never: Mila D. Aguilar on Cory Aquino

Self happened upon Mila D. Aguilar’s first-person account in the September 2009 issue of Filipinas Magazine.  (Self is proud to say: she’s been subscribing to the magazine since the very first issue):

My President has been laid to rest. Now I can break my silence. For the one who presently sits on her manufactured throne is not my president. She never was.

My President is she who freed me from a Marcos prison in 1986. I know that she alone is not responsible for 1986, for the Read the rest of this entry »

Bone-Chilling (October) Saturday & a Hilarious Website

Why do the weather newscasters never warn us when to expect a weekend of blustery, bone-chilling wind?  You can be sure that when they say it will be hot and sweltering, it won’t be.  And when they say it will be cool, that’s when it will be hot and sweltering.

Today, self’s hands and lips are sooo chapped. She and hubby went to see “The Invention of Lying” at the downtown Century 20 (Five Stars! Ricky Gervais killed! Also, there is a short appearance by Edward Norton, and what’s so cool about his one scene is that it’s not immediately apparent that it is Ed Norton — I looked up the movie on IMDB, and after scrolling down a seemingly endless list of actors and actresses, I thought I’d made a mistake. But no, there was his name: the very last on the list, and even then the entry says only “uncredited, unconfirmed.” What convinced self that it was indeed he was the voice. — Edward, hurry up and make more movies! Self misses you!).  Self nearly froze on the walk from the car to the theater (Very interesting: there were hardly any people in the audience, but of the few hardy souls who were there for the first screening of the day, two were deep into books, and one was using the Read the rest of this entry »

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