Thursday, May 26, 2016

100 Word Challenge: If I Ruled the World!

A dapper gentleman was caning down the sidewalk carefully scrutinizing the city cement. I’d noticed the elegant stature and silver cornrows first as she closed the sidewalk space between us. When their shoulders met, he spoke. 

“You have beautiful hair.” 

She tipped her head.

“You just made her day,” I said.

“I meant to.”

In my pretend world, I’d outlaw earbuds so people could hear birds, and buses, and actual voices. I’d ticket for web-surfing while walking instead of parking. Maybe even “Googling” while I had the pad out. Because simple displays of sweetness are easily missed when texting.


Come play along at Thin Spiral Notebook where we were given the word "Pretend" to inspire our 100-word piece!

Such simple displays of sweetness may come along only once.

Monday, May 23, 2016

It's Monday, May 23, 2016! What Are You Reading? (Insomniac Addition)

Hosted by The Book Date

Don’t you completely hate insomnia? I didn’t fall asleep until after 3:30 a.m. last night. This reminds me of a quote I recently added over at Goodreads.

“Insomnia is his mind's revenge for all the tricky thoughts he has carefully avoided during the daylight hours.” Alain de Botton, The Course of Love 

What have I recently finished?

The Course of Love by Alain de Botton. I have been married for over 27 years, and this book speaks to my me and the loving relationship I have had with a member the opposite sex for longer than that. 

This is my review on Goodreads:

“'If you could read my mind love, what a tale my thoughts could tell.’ Gordon Lightfoot

To me, Alain de Botton, is like this regarding relationships. He reads my mind, and knows my thoughts without knowing me at all. 

This is the long awaited follow up to On Love. That book was insightful. This one is even more so, and I loved it!

If you are a long-time married person, you'll probably concur that he is "spot on”.”

I added a number of quotes from this book on Goodreads as well (all but two shown). I stopped after I realized I was just jamming up my friends’ news feeds. Basically, the entire book should be in quotes!

What am I currently reading?

I am about to finish up Wise Blood by Flannery O’Connor. I am enjoying this in its audio version. Don’t you just love that moment when a title’s meaning is revealed? Don’t we all strive to have “wise blood”?

For my book group, I am on the first chapter of Purity by Jonathan Franzen. I need to hustle my tush with this. It was my book club recommendation as I thought it would make for a perfect, in-depth discussion and we are meeting at the beginning of June!

The Nest by Cynthis D’Aprix Sweeney

What will I read next?

Haven’t a clue. So many books in my house, so little time!

What has your reading week been like?

Monday, May 16, 2016

It's Monday! What Are You Reading (iPhone Addition)

After digging through every travel bag, it is safe to conclude that I came home with my laptop but not its power cord, and it is dead as a door nail (the laptop)! So here we are, well here I am, using two thumbs to answer these important Monday questions.

What have I recently finished?

Abso-freaking-nothing. Sometimes I even disappoint myself. All I can say is I guess there are times when being with actual people takes precedence over fictional ones.

What am I currently reading?

Same as last week with the exception of listening to Wise Blood by Flannery O'Connor. Hazel Motes is a creep! Enjoying this outstanding example of dialog.

What will I read next?

My hands are full for the next week! Need to crank out what I have in front of me, but I will never stop dreaming about the next book.

Hosted by The Book Date.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

100 Word Challenge: Who Can Trust A Person Like That?

For seven years running, Eleanor proudly received the award for “Most Nonjudgmental” at the Miller’s Merry Manor annual banquet. “Honey, do you!”, had been her motto since she secretly eloped at twenty-one.

In 85 years, Eleanor’s gut had never failed her. So when it rumbled the day Sadie moved in, she was on high alert though it wouldn’t be until the day in the grocery store parking lot that she figured it out. Sadie didn’t return her cart, and who can trust someone with manners like that? Never mind she cheats at BINGO and makes eyes at her Henry.

The prompt this week at Thin Spiral Notebook is "manners". Use it to inspire a 100-word something. This piece is un-fiction. The circumstances and names have been changed to protect the innocent! I'm watching you.

Monday, May 9, 2016

It's Monday, May 9th! What Are You Reading?

Hosted by The Book Date

Life has left me with precious little opportunity for reading lately. That is a-okay because I have been spending time with people, those I love, and as much as I am enamored by books, flesh is always better. A warm hug defies description sometimes.

What have I recently finished?

The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith. In almost all cases, in my humble opinion, the book is better than the movie, and I really liked the movie. To find out that this is the first of FIVE makes me want to jump for joy. This book is yummy!!! If you love thrillers, give it a go!  

I also recently discovered that Highsmith has written a collection of short stories, and Carol, Strangers on a Train, and Little Tales of Misogyny! I have hit the freaking motherlode! She can keep me happily busy for the next six months.

What am I reading now?

The Little Virtues by Natalia Ginzburg, a simple but lovely short story collection.

The Nest by Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney because who doesn’t love some dysfunctional family dynamics?

Purity by Jonathan Franzen since I promoted it to my book club, and I have less than a month to finish and annotate it properly (so I can speak intelligently about the book I recommended for discussion. Pressure!).

What will I read next? 

As I was typing, my fingers accidentally wrote “What will I need next?” Ha! I am waiting for a book I ordered through It is an Advanced Reading Copy of The Course of Love, which is the long awaited followup to On Love by Alain de Botton. If you don’t know about The School of Life, check it out. He has written some outstanding books. I loved On Love. I am anticipating the love I will feel for this one.
Okay, now it is about you! What is going on in your reading world?

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Bloggers, Do You Do This Too?

On more than a few occasions especially when I have been writing and posting, I check the blog stats for the newly written post. What I find most interesting is where the trail leads after that. To which older posts.

I love this part of blogging because I am forever curious and intensely interested in people’s behavior and topics they read most often and trying to understand why. What elements of or about certain posts makes them more highly and routinely visited?

For instance, I write quite often about the books I am reading. Those interested in that kind of thing, books, check out several of the “It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?” entries. Others follow a chronological path. They may read everything from the entire month of November, 2013. I get "rabbit holes".

The next most fun thing to do is go back and read some of the older posts that are generating activity for some reason. I have written almost 600 posts. I don’t remember them all. Some don’t even ring a bell. Some I know like the back of my hand. Fun stuff.

I did this right now. Read some of the old posts visitors visited today. Can’t believe I wrote some of the things I did.

But the very, very tippy top thing that keeps me coming back for more is reading the comments left on old posts. On any post, really. Thank you to all who have visited and commented. Ever. I love what you've said to me. I love that you have taken the time. You make this blogging thing the bomb!

Monday, May 2, 2016

It's Monday, May 2nd! What Are You Reading?

Hosted by The Book Date

Here it is, Monday once again! It was an exciting weekend indeed. I met one of my idols/girl crushes. The Chicago Humanities Foundation event on Saturday night was Mary-Louise Park who wrote the amazing memoir titled Dear Mr. You. My feelings about her, the book, and the evening are fair too extensive and deserve a post of their own. If you want to read a great and recent review of her book, check out this fun one over at a favorite book reviewing website, Dunce Academy.

What have I recently finished?

Written on the Body by Jeanette Winterson. Here’s what I said about it in last week’s post. This book. So many feelings. I’ve been there. 

Felicity by Mary Oliver. I am a devoted Oliver fan. Her poems make my heart sing. This is my third collection. I will continue to seek out her words as long as I live.

What am I currently reading?

I am just about finished listening to The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith. I forgot how sociopathic Tom Ripley truly is. 

The Tsar of Love and Techno by Anthony Mara. The four stories I have so far read have been outstanding! Here is a review I enjoyed.

The Little Virtues by Natalia Ginzburg. These are essays translated from Italian. Recommended by Zadie Smith (who wrote White Teeth), in an article I found in this link.

Good Morning, Midnight by Jean Rhys. This one is touted by Lauren Groff, of Fates and Furies fame, in the article mentioned above. I loved that book. How could I resist?

What will I read next?

No one knows but the shadow. My mom says this a lot.

Tell me, tell me! What are you reading?