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Showing posts from December 12, 2010

Trivial and Fickle

I'm tired of my old blog design, and on an unrelated note, here's some usage trivia for you. I just got back from Alabama, where they knock the hat off your head if you're rude enough to wear one indoors. No shirt, no shoes, no take-off-hat, no service. Also, people apparently don't do anything fun there. Us: What is there to see or do around here? Any good trails or museums or historical sites? Hotel concierge: I have no idea. Gas station guy: Well, you could look at that billboard over there.It might say something. That was all right, because we were too busy driving around getting lost to have time to do anything other than run, watch other people run, and take pictures of runners. Thank goodness for GPS. While there, I ate grits for the first time, and would have liked them, except for the artificial butter swimming all over the top. Also, I learned the correct way to use y'all. I think. Disclaimer: I heard this from someone who is not a southern

Quick Christmas Picks

This is the year I set a goal to read 100 books. By Christmas I was going to have all kinds of book recommendations. Which I do. I just don't have time to talk about them. I still have (ack!) eleven more books to read in the next three weeks. Plus Christmas stuff. No problem. But people have been asking what books to buy for Christmas, and there's not much time left, so, okay, here's the short version of my 2010 book recommendations (not all published in 2010, but all read by me this year). Keep in mind I have a literary bias. I mean, my true favorites are always the books I feel have a real sense of the beauty and wonder of language. They must tell a great story. I have to love the characters--or hate them and then grow to love them. The character progression has to interest me. The book has to have something worthwhile to say, but never, ever beats me over the head with its ideas. And in books for kids, they have to carry a sense of hope and possibility. Because