Sunday, May 31, 2009

Five on Friday

I know it's Sunday, but I've noticed other blogs that post five good things for the week on Fridays. I like that idea quite a lot.

1. Saw Star Trek last night. It is amazing and no I'm not a Star Trek fan, well I guess I am now. The best character is the Scottish actor who plays Scotty. Simon Pegg from Shaun of the Dead.

2. My niece turned two. Watching that child grow is one of the highlights of my life.

3. I went to BookPeople and managed to walk away with only a book for my niece. Her first cookbook. Next weekend we're going to make the pizza recipe. That brings me to #4:

4. Baking scones with my niece. Two year olds can help in the kitchen. Scones were perfect because the little hands can squish the butter into the flour, stir int he milk and even brush the milk onto the scones. She did some rolling with her kid-size rolling pin and sprinkled on cinnamon and sugar. They were the most delicious scones I've ever made.

5. And finally I'm reading a great book about zen. It's called Hardcore Zen, written by Brad Warner, an ex-punk rocker turned monk. If you grew up in the 70'8 and/or 80's it's the perfect book to being learning about zen buddhism. Easy to read with great music references.

Whew, that was easy. And, this practice may very well help me pay better attention to little joyful things in my life.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Thirteen Reasons Why

I finished Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher a few days ago. I haven't written yet about it because I can't figure out how I feel. Here's the synopsis from amazon:
When Clay Jenson plays the casette tapes he received in a mysterious package, he's surprised to hear the voice of dead classmate Hannah Baker. He's one of 13 people who receive Hannah's story, which details the circumstances that led to her suicide. Clay spends the rest of the day and long into the night listening to Hannah's voice and going to the locations she wants him to visit. The text alternates, sometimes quickly, between Hannah's voice (italicized) and Clay's thoughts as he listens to her words, which illuminate betrayals and secrets that demonstrate the consequences of even small actions. Hannah, herself, is not free from guilt, her own inaction having played a part in an accidental auto death and a rape. The message about how we treat one another, although sometimes heavy, makes for compelling reading. Give this to fans of Gail Giles psychological thrillers.

Well written: yes
Creative: yes
She is clearly a very depressed girl with few coping skills or anyone she trusts to really listen. Number 13 on the list should be shot. If he existed in real life and the tapes became public I would hope that he would lose his job and any credibility. To me, this book belongs up there with Speak (one of the most important young adult books of the last 10 years). This book should be taught in schools if only as a way to begin real discussion. If you are a suicide survivor it will probably be painful to read. Read it anyway.

I would like to interview the author. I want to know why he wrote this book.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Bubble, bubble, toil and trouble

It's thundering! Oh! There it goes again. How I wish these days stuck around more.

70 and ECT therapy finally needs trials

This is insane. 70 years? How is it possible that such an invasive and serious "treatment" was administered for 70 years with no clinical trials?

Sunday, May 17, 2009

The Joy of Smoothies and Where Have I been?

Smoothies are one of my favorite pick me ups. People out there love to extol the benefits of greasy food after an evening of drinks, but seriously smoothies are way better. When you pee while you drink you are actually losing more nutrients than you normally do because alcohol flushes you out. Losing all those nutrients like potassium makes headaches and nausea among other ickiness. A nice fruit and protein powder smoothie gives it all back to your system quickly and yummily.

And where have I been?
I have been:
having successful surgery
applying to two great grad schools for mfa in children's writing programs
giving into temptation way too much at work
spending as much time as possible with my niece

Where have you been lately?

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Psychotic Creativity

Check out this article about this link between creativity and mental illness.