May 29th, 2015

101 in 1001 Update

So I’ve been trucking along pretty passively at my 101 things in 1001 days project. I said I would blog about everything but some there just wasn’t much to say. So here’s five updates on things I’ve done.

45) Travel to 5 more states – Georgia was the first state I visited this year. I went to Atlanta for a work conference and I enjoyed it. It was there that I got to swim with the beluga whales at the Georgia Aquarium. Sidenote: my profile picture on OKCupid is me swimming with the beluga and some guy sent me a link to Blackfish. 1) I’ve seen it, 2) I wasn’t at SeaWorld and 3) piss off random condescending dude.

49) Visit a state I’ve never been to before – Georgia. Not only was it my first time swimming with beluga whales, it was the first time I visited Georgia!

58) Play trivia in a bar – So I went on a date to Bilbo Baggins’ where they have trivia cards on each table and we quizzed each other. (So I’m stretching a bit – it counts!)

75) Hold a committee position in DAR – DAR stands for Daughters of the American Revolution, a service organization dedicated to promoting historic preservation, education and patriotism. There’s a national level, a state level and a chapter level. I currently serve as my chapter’s budget chair. Small potatoes but small steps can add up to something great.

93) Leave a 100% tip – I did this at Copperwood Tavern when I visited a few weeks ago with my friend Courtney. I wasn’t going to do it but the service was great and I had such a fun time, that I was all “tonight’s the night!”

Are you doing 101 in 1001?

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One Response to “101 in 1001 Update”

  1. Christine says:

    You’re doing awesome! And how cool that you got to swim with the belugas. I love the GA Aquarium!

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May 28th, 2015

Book Review: The Girl with All the Gifts by M. R. Carey


Goodreads summary:

Every morning, Melanie waits in her cell to be collected for class. When they come for her, Sergeant Parks keeps his gun pointing at her while two of his people strap her into the wheelchair. She thinks they don’t like her. She jokes that she won’t bite, but they don’t laugh.

My review: (May contain spoilers.)

This was frustrating read. I’ve heard so many great things about this book and it came highly recommended, but it left me disappointed. I felt that it could have been better. I’ve also heard a lot about the strong, well defined women characters and….no? In my opinion anyway. And it has nothing to do with the characters being flawed – because they are flawed, which I appreciate but they’re also kind of dumb, which I don’t appreciate. I don’t know, I just don’t think it’s a great herald for feminism that some make it out to be when the most logical character is male and the women characters are stupid, hilariously so.

It’s not a spoiler to say this is a zombie book. The main character is a zombie child, an advance, smart zombie child, but needs to eat people nonetheless. Melanie is able to contain it a bit but still, the male character is right – she’s a ticking time bomb. So you kind of side with the male character when he says she needs to be put down or let go – either way, she’s needs to be away from the group. Yes, Melanie bails them but only because a female character does something really stupid.

There’s this running question of whether it’s ok to kill one to save millions and it’s fairly interesting and I didn’t know where the book was going to go with it. Unfortunately, it went the worst possible way. Apparently, it’s ok for one to kill millions because evolution and such and its toots sad and all but life will find a way. Up until that point, I was kind of on board with the book being ok but not the greatest thing ever. Then I got to the moral and I just wanted to toss it aside. Oh, so it’s ok to kill as long as you’re not the one dying. Good to know book, good to know.

It’s not an awful book. It just had more potential than it lived up to. Overall, I was just disappointed since I’ve heard all the hype.

3 stars!

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One Response to “Book Review: The Girl with All the Gifts by M. R. Carey”

  1. Diana says:

    Sad that the book didn’t live up to all the hype.. I dislike when that happens!

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May 1st, 2015

Five things Friday

Hello world! I feel like I only consistantly blog on Fridays. Desperately trying to change that but you know how it goes. (Or do you?)

I’m actually working on renaming this here blog space. My current name just doesn’t feel like me nor is it original. I had an idea for a new name, but it apparently is the name of a radio station that focuses on paranormal activity. So, its not completely off the table but I probably need something better.

Anyway, enough of that boring stuff, lets move on (to the other boring stuff?)

1) Last Thursday I got sushi at Bonsai in Shirlington with Courtney, who is my little sister in the sorority. We joked about how we still use that to explain how we know each other to people when really we could just say friend from college. (Not like anyone truly cares anyway.) But old habits die hard.

2) Went to Topgolf last Friday with a friend. Originally we were going to do the range but decided to play a round of miniature golf where I didn’t completely embarrass myself. Afterwards, we went to Ruby Tuesdays nearby like a couple of high schoolers.

3) The next night I ate at Mai Thai with the same friend before introducing him to Bilbo Baggins. He was less than impressed but I still love you Bilbos! I just can’t recall what drink I actually like from you. I had the Pippin’s Punch and that was not it.

4) On Tuesday I went with Courtney and my friend Eric to Copperwood Tavern. Courtney and I had stopped there for drinks the previous Thursday and got to talking to the bartender, as you do. Courtney was going to help him find a job in his field and he promised her a free drink next time. Alas, he was not there this time – we had missed him by an hour. So we had to pay for all our own moonshine. I got apple pie flavor – yum!

5) Tonight I’m hitting it up in DuPont – hopefully stopping by the Mad Hatter. I used to go out in DC a lot more when I actually worked there. Now that I don’t, it’s such a pain to haul myself into the area. Got to deal with metroing and parking and it’s just awful. Anyway, I can’t stay out too late since tomorrow I’m going to Gold Cup.

What are your weekend plans?

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April 24th, 2015

Five documentaries you need to watch

1) Hoop Dreams
I remember watching this one in high school. It really served as a gateway drug to other documentaries. It’s about two inner city kids who turn to basketball in order to get away from their class status.

2) The Thin Blue Line
I think a lot of people credit this one as the one that set the status for the modern documentary. It’s hard to image a documentary today without reenactments. This one set the standard for that. It’s about Randall Dale Adams, who was convicted and sentenced to life in prison for a crime he clearly did not commit. A lot of credit goes to this documentary for his case being reopened actually. Now that’s the power of the media.

3) Super Size Me
I used to be a major fast food junkie and I credit this documentary a lot for weaning me off McDonalds. Following director Morgan Spurlock’s 30 day binge of McDonalds – eating it for breakfast, lunch and dinner and super sizing when asked – the film demonstrates how his body changed thanks to the diet and the short and long term consequences he faces.

4) Paradise Lost
I’m convinced that there either weren’t parental locks in the early 90s or my parents just didn’t care to utilize them. I remember watching this when it came out and it sparked my interest in the West Memphis Three case that continues to this day. In case you don’t know what I’m talking about, the documentary is about three teens accused of murdering three boys in a West Memphis, Arkansas. The case basically came on the tail end of the Satanic Ritual scare of the 80s and 90s. Along with the McMartin TV movie with James Wood, I watched this documentary over and over on early HBO.

5) Bowling for Columbine
Let’s get this out of the way: I hate Michael Moore. He’s a condescending jackass who thinks he’s better and more enlighten than everyone else. A great example of this is his documentary Sicko, which I struggled to get through; there’s one scene where he takes 9/11 first responders who now suffer from long term effects but can’t get help in the states to Mexico and the only thing you can think is: geez Michael Moore, you make more than enough – why don’t you help them out? But oh, how can he – that would interfere with telling us how sheep-like we are.

But I digress. I can’t tolerate anything Moore Fahrenheit 9/11 and now. But his older stuff isn’t bad. Still slightly bias but not bad. And I find myself drawn to watching Bowling for Columbine over and over. I’ve written about my feelings regarding the Columbine shooting before and I think that’s why this appeals to me still. It tries to make sense out of a senseless tragedy.

Bonus: Blackfish
My feelings on capacity are pretty complex but Blackfish makes a great argument for why captivity is wrong and how orcas are treated at Sea World is inhumane. There’s a reason Sea World is terrified of this documentary and keep fighting against it in its marketing.

What’s your favorite documentary?

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April 21st, 2015

Between the Lines: We Were Liars

I accidentally wrote “Between the Lies: We Were Liars.” Ironic!

Anyway, I reviewed this book back in February. Long story short: I enjoyed it, while finding the plot to be very simplistic. Warning: the flowery writing style may drive you way. Purple prose indeed.

But I wanted to join this months Between the Lines with Kristyn and Anne, so I’m back to answer their questions about what I thought. I didn’t reread the book, so I’m drawing completely from memory.

1. Do you trust Cady’s narration? Is she lying…or hallucinating?

It’s hard to trust Cady’s narration – even she doesn’t. A lot of made about them being liars so the implication is that Cady’s lying. However, I didn’t think she was lying – I honestly thought she lost her memory and everything going on was the best to her knowledge. It’s only towards the end when I realized that she’s hallucinating. But yea, considering the title, I didn’t think there was actual lying involved.

2. Were the Liars justified in any way to commit the crime they committed?

They were justified in feeling they way they felt when committing the crime, but not the crime itself, if that makes sense. I mean, I wouldn’t have done it but they felt like they had little choice. I’m just thinking there were better ways to get their point across. And they certainly didn’t think the plan through. Even before realizing the ending, I thought, well this won’t end well and they certainly are lucky if it did.

3. Is the Sinclair family acting of their own free will or are they in some way merely moving through patterns established in fairy tales that existed long before them?

Gets into The Thinker Pose What is free will…? Is there such a thing? Can there be when money is involved?

I don’t know. I do know that the good old saying of who holds the money makes the rules is true with this family. They are more driven by that than by being their own people. It’s like a crazy race to the bottom with this family and they reaped what they sowed.

As for the fairy tales, I totally forgot about them / that part, so I’m not listing them as impactful. If anything, I think they were just an escape for Cady.

4. Was the ending a surprise…or did you see it coming?

I’m a gullible person who usually takes what they see at face value, so yes, I was surprised. When they set about their plan, I did think they were extremely lucky to pull it off safely. By the way? I know they were drunk and all but dumbest plan ever.

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2 Responses to “Between the Lines: We Were Liars”

  1. Anne says:

    Thanks for linking up with us! Loved your answer to #3. I think this family was overrun with greed and clearly it led to their demise. I also trusted Cady…I didn’t think she was lying I just thought that her injury was impairing her.

  2. Kristyn says:

    I couldn’t believe the ending. Good grief. Who really thinks it’s a good idea to set a fire and not check to make sure everyone gets out alive? Who also sets it to start in the kitchen and the only option to leave? I mean…dumb. I am lucky I wasn’t that desperate for approval and to get my family back together. So crazy!

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