Thursday, July 31, 2003

start me up

Unprecidented i know, but here is today's thrid post, though officially it is after midnight so i guess this is really tomorrow's post.

It's on everyone's mind and deserves some serious discussion - the Stones concert in Toronto. The concert to end all concerts and 'put Toronto back on the map'. If you are like me, Toronto was never really off the map...

At first i really scoffed at the idea that the government (or Mel?) was going to pay ten million dollars (said in Dr. Evil's voice) to the Rolling Stones, who don't have enough money to begin with, to come to Toronto to revive its tourist slump in the wake of SARS. In my mind the notion was ridiculous. i ridiculed it. But now having seen the highlights on television, i feel that i have really missed out on something. Having admitted that, i still don't know what the long term economic effects on TO will be.

And its not about seeing the bands, it is about being somewhere with half a million other people and eating Alberta beef. It was a multi generational affair celebrating Toronto, and even though out here on the west coast it is not cool to celebrate Toronto i still wished i was a part of it. Having been to other highly attended events, such as Nagnathaiya in Banaras (ok, only a few thousand go to it) , i can tell you that the feeling that comes from being somewhere with that many other people for the same purpose is a powerful expereince (cf. my still unwritten dissertation for more on the feeling ofcommunitas).

The concert also looked fabulous, if you don't mind having 300,000 people between you and the stage. I would have loved to have been there pumping my fist to AC/DC and belting out the tunes with Getty. Not to mention that it looks like the Stones put on a wonderful show. Where does their energy come from? Mick is roughly the same age as my dad and yet i can't imagine my Dad racing back and forth across the stage with such ferocity. But my dad is an accountant not a rock star. Mick never stops. It was enough to make a grown man cry.

And on a truly Canadian note, from what i have heard so far, there was only one arrest. Ah, what a non confrontation lot were are.

Wednesday, July 30, 2003

big news/ good news

The Brain is coming back!! He just called me and said he was on his way home.Quel suprise! The other night when i talked to him he said he would be north of 60 for another couple of weeks, but he lied just so i wouldn't get my hopes up. And as it turned out he was supposed to leave camp yesterday, but they had a freak blizzard and coudln't leave until today. Ooh i am so excited. On the other hand, my sleep schedule at the moment is a little messed up, so i may be hard to live with. But who cares. Yahooeee!

Current Reads
My next book is THE HOUSE OF BLUE MANGOES by David Dravidar, I haven't started it yet, but perhaps i will later tonight. Apparently is is very good. I know Vikram Seth was on of the first readers for it. DD was an editor at Oxford University Press in India, and wrote it in his spare time. I noticed in the acknowledgements that his thanks quite of few very well known scholars, which means it will be well researched. Basically it is a family saga that spans the last 100 years of Indian history.

another day, another book

I didn't blog yesterday and i was missed - what a great feeling! The writing has once again taken off, so it is back to the diss. Last night i worked until about 3:00, but i was so geared up that i was up until 7:30 this morning. Now my internal clock will be thoroughly out of wack, but what to do? At least it gave me time to finish reading THE LAKE OF DEAD LANGUAGES, which i totally enjoyed. Two thumbs up. I don't know what i will read next, i will go to the library later today....

My best friend and dissertation support coach a.k.a. the Voice of Reason (VOR) has suggested that perhaps if i did a little more school related reading and a little less pure pleasure reading my diss might come along faster. She may have something there, but i flout reason in the face.

I am still having problems getting this blog to do what i want. I have tried so many times to get my weather pixie up, but it just isn't happening. But i have added more links. Check them out.

Monday, July 28, 2003

Decidedly Domestic

So in another keen attempt to avoid the diss., i went domestic today. Did laundry, dishes and cooked if making pasta salad counts as cooking. And then i got down to work. By the time i go to bed i will be done what i set out to do. Bravo!

I entertained myself for quite sometime this afternoon thinking about the word seminal, as in "In Turner's seminal article on....". Seminal comes from the latin word semenalis, meaning seed. One of its meanings is having to do with semen or seed (hee hee hee). Of course one of its other meanings is having the possibility of future development. But still it is fun to think of the other meaning while staring at the screen thinking about what i am going to say about Turner's seminal article!

The Brain called this evening and it looks like he will remain north of 60 forever, or at least until mid August, which feels like forever to some of us.

Sunday, July 27, 2003

Tomorrow is the first day of the rest of your life

It may have come to the attention of some faithful readers out there that this is supposed to be a blog about the trials and tribulations of a PhD student, and yet talk of the fabled dissertation has remained firmly in the back ground. Well things are about to change! Tomorrow is the first day of the rest of my life and more importantly the first day of a work filled week! Theoretically i am supposed to be done this chapter by Friday, but that is not going to happen. However, if i stick to my disciplined plan of attack at least some progress will be made. First off, finish with Durkhiem, then go onto to Levi Strauss, look at Turner and voila that should be a couple of pages at least. What i need at this point are doable goals...

Current Reads
Well, i finally finished THE OPIUM CLERK by Kunal Basu. Basically it was a good book. There are two main stories - of Hiran for the first half of the book, and Douglas in the second half. I much preferred the story of Hiran. Though if i had written it i would have made more out of his palm reading abilities. But then i am not one for subtlety. Sometime tomorrow i plan to set the book free... Oh yeah, and if you have read and liked THE OPIUM CLERK, might i recommend KALIMANTAAN by C.S. Godshalk. Set in the 19th century Borneo.

The reason why i am emphasizing the fact the i am finally done reading it is because i have another book waiting in the wings which i am really excited about. THE LAKE OF DEAD LANGUAGES by Carol Goodman. Apparently it follows in the tradition of THE SECRET HISTORY by Donna Tartt, which l really like. And speaking of which Tartt has a new book out, but it is still in hard cover so i won't get to it for a while.


In an unbidden moment of tele-laxity (def'n - letting your guard down by an unexpected phone call, to speak on the phone without thinking) i unwittingly admitted to the Fab Five&Co. that i am a blogger! Oh yes, it seems that i am back at the DSJOC becoming a very real version of my worst nightmare. Who'd of thought that i would become a cyber chick geek? On the otherhand, no one knew what i was talking about or what a blog was. Having said that, this blog goes out to the 5, partying it up at a summer fiesta sans moi.

It seems that the topic of the night was to circumsize or not. Not in our usual roster of conversation topics, but it is not everyday that preparations are being made for the entrance of a new Fabulet. Of course because of my extensive knowledge in this area (yeah, right) they felt i too should wiegh in on the topic, hence the phone call. My opinion - very 70's thing to do, but an impromptu survey suggests that i could be wrong. I was under the impression that in the past they (who is that exactly?) encouraged a little snip snip for hygenic reasons. At any rate, i think it is a bit of a moot (love that word) point since i believe the Fabulet will be a girl.

That's all for tonight. I know, i know, you girls are thinking Please don't go...

Friday, July 25, 2003

Oh yeah, and have no fear, over time this blog will get better. I am not that much of a computer person or HTML literate (though everyone says it is easy) so i am just waiting for the Brain to come home and flash things up a little.
Another day another entry.

So i have been suffering from a bit of dissertation paralysis lately. Yesterday afternoon i thought i could get over it by working at the beach for a while, but as it turned out, it was quite windy down there. And i forgot to bring my novel, so it was a bit of a wasted trip.

A couple of weeks ago i had this brlliant idea for a chapter, so i did all of the background reading and everything to bring myself upto speed and now writing it i feel like it is just a huge waste of time. What am i trying to prove anyways? It has become much more theoretical than i ever intended, which is not good because it means it is boring to write and i am not much good at it anyways. I will keep plugging along. I am supposed to be done this chapter by the end of the month anyways, and that's just a week away.

Oh and to make my life even worse, i forgot to tape the Amazing Race last night. And i think it was a good one. From what i can glean from the cryptic emails of my friends Millie and Chucky got the boot last night. Too bad, i really liked Millie and i hoped to gain some insight into what she saw in him. I think their relationship is pretty much over anyways, but...
Anyways, i was supposed to be taping all the episodes for the Brain (ie/ my partner, husband, boyfriend, whatever you want to call him - he's the Brain, i'm the Passion) while he's north of 60, so it's a blow to both of us.

The reason i missed all of this TV related stuff is because i was out with my friend, who wishes to be known as the Water Boy. We just went out for greek and then looked at his pictures from his latest trip to india. They were amazing. It makes me wish that i could take better photos. Tonight we might get together to watch The English Patient on his more than amazing home theatre system. I hope he calls. I don't feel like working.

Thursday, July 24, 2003

So now i am 2 for 2. i don't think i have ever kept a journal going for this long before!

Current Reads
Yesterday i read KNOCKED OUT BY MY NUNGA NUNGAS by Louise Rennison. Yes, that's right, the on going confessions of the fab British teenager Georgia Nicolson. These books were orginally suggested to me by my sister in law, the Mad Scientist. They rock and only take about 2 hour to read.

On a more serious note, i am also reading THE OPIUM CLERK by Kunal Basu. I was attracted to this book because it is set at least partially in India and Basu was a prfoessor at McGill University and now teaches at Oxford, so i knew it would be well researched. The story itself was a little hard going at first, but now i am into it. Although at times i am entirely confused about what is going on. But i think you are supposed to be. Opium sort of does that to you.

Wednesday, July 23, 2003

Welcome to my first Blog!

I can't believe that i am actually doing this. Whenever i heard about blogging and bloggers i thought it was more than a little self gratuitous, way out there and WEIRD! I mean, who wants to air their dirty laundry publically? The answer, i guess, is i do.

So, what shall i tell you about myself. In spite of this public airing of laundry, i do intend to keep my identity at least semi hindden. Otherwise at some point in the future i may come off as a real bitch, You know, like Jon and Kelly on the Amazing Race. They appear to be really nasty people, or is that just the editing. Anyways at the end of all of this i still want to be able to look at myself in the mirror.

I live in the pacific north west, in an area that will someday in the not too distant future form part of the new country of Cascadia. Here's my theory - at some point, when the powers that be in America are no longer after oil in the Middle East, they will invade Canada for their large stores of water (it is always about natural resources!). Then after several years of disgruntlement, the west coast area will break away from the rest of the mega nation to form Cascadia. It makes sense really. The west coast has a very distinctive attitude that does not quite jive with New York, Chicago or Toronto, it is more geared mentally and economically to Asia, and as far as i can tell the climate is better.

Enough about my bizarre theories, and more about me! I am in the throes of writing my PhD dissertation, so that will undoubtedly factor into my blog entries. I know what you are thinking, is the blog not just another way to spend my time while avoiding the Diss? You may be right, i may be crazy. And i guess the rest will all come out as a write.

Keep on keepin' on.