Reading Life 2016

October 2016

  1. Ghost Soldiers: The Epic Account of World War II’s Greatest Rescue Mission (history), by Hampton Sides
  2. A Short History of Women (novel) by Kate Walbert

September 2016

  1. The Way to the Spring: Life and Death in Palestine (nonfiction), by Ben Ehrenreich
  2. Brazillionaires (nonfiction), by Alex Cuadros

August 2016

  1. Northanger Abbey (novel), by Jane Austen
  2. Swimming Studies (memoir), by Leann Sharpton
  3. The Course of Love (novel), by Alain de Botton
  4. The Narrow Road to the Deep North and Other Sketches (travel book, poetry), by Matsuo Basho
  5. The Lonely City: Adventures in the Art of Being Alone (essay collection), by Olivia Laing

July 2016

  1. The Green Road (novel), by Anne Enright
  2. Girl Waits With Gun (mystery), by Amy Stewart

June 2016

  1. The Girl on the Train (novel), by Paula Hawkins
  2. My Brilliant Friend (novel), by Elena Ferrante

May 2016 Read the rest of this entry »

Classic: Mike O’Brien, Shouts & Murmurs, The New Yorker

From Shouts & Murmurs, The New Yorker: 7 December 2015

“How to Live an Alternative-Comedy Lifestyle” by Mike O’Brien:

After you stop volunteering at the senior citizens’ home, get the most normal job ever. The more normal, the more hilarious. On most days, stroll in a little late, with your hair parted down the middle, and say, “Sorry I’m late. I was just livin’ on the edge. Are y’all Aerosmith fans?”


Mess with everyone by putting a whole roasted pig with an apple in its mouth in the break-room fridge (Before you do this, become a great cook so you can prepare the pig yourself and carve it for everyone.)


Memorize your co-workers’ favorite conversation topics. Discuss these with them, and let their knowledge genuinely impress you. This may sound difficult, but once you’re in the alternative-comedy groove your questions will flow naturally. If you become invested in your co-workers themselves, and therefore in their answers, they will never figure out that your presence at the office is a gag.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Rainbows, Lamps, and Watercolors Transmogrify and Delight

An ordinary day became great because there was this rainbow:

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The lamp below was in a down-home grocery store in Philo, California (Pop. 360 approx.)

The surprise of it being over Aisle # 3 is why self is including it in this post:

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Lemons Grocery, Philo, California

Lastly, self’s friend Mary-Ellen Campbell has been all over the world. She brings watercolors and sketchbooks wherever she goes and makes quick paintings of her surroundings. Look at this simple yet beautiful rendition of Angkor Wat, Cambodia:

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Angkor Wat, Watercolor by Artist/Traveler Mary-Ellen Campbell

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

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