elbales: (You make kitty scared)
When Used Books Attack: Banana Edition

At RiverRun Bookstore, we carry used books as well as new. People drop off boxes of their books, and we go through them and decide what we would like to sell in the store. We mostly receive fiction and nonfiction paperbacks, but occasionally, there is something delightful and unusual in the batch: An old Agatha Christie book in French; a book of poems about unicorns; a children’s book called “Arlo, the Dandy Lion”. But Tom, the store’s owner, found a book yesterday morning that can only be classified under ‘Things That Will Make You Claw at Your Own Eyes’. Behold: BE BOLD WITH BANANAS.

Just click through, y'all. It's hilarious. And terrible. Hilarrible, maybe.
elbales: (Girl Reading - Perugini)
Normally I don't update just to say that someone famous has passed away, but I know some of my flist are tremendous fans of hers.
elbales: (BAAL SMASH)
Holy shit. Holy fucking shit.

Look, we all know how totally fucked up the gender roles are in the Twilight series, right? Edward is a total stalker, Bella has no spine, Jacob force-kisses Bella, blah blah blah. Someone has actually managed to top Stephenie Meyer's bullshit. Becca Fitzpatrick's Hush, Hush features a too-stupid-to-live heroine who gets stalked, harassed, intimidated, flat-out terrified, and I'm running out of horrid verbs, by the "hero," a fallen angel who, I kid you not, wants to kill her so he can get back into Heaven. And we're supposed to believe that she's attracted to him. Worse, she goes for help to adults in her life, repeatedly, and gets told that she's overreacting. What the fuck. What the ever-living shit. This is what we're serving up to our young people? Urge to kill rising.

[livejournal.com profile] bookshop has done an excellent, if possibly triggery, discussion, one which is well worth reading, of this heinous trend in YA lit.

ETA: And [livejournal.com profile] ceilidh_ann has done a full review so that anyone may be properly horrified without having to subject themselves to the book.

ETA2: Also linked by [livejournal.com profile] bookshop is this very interesting post that asks, "Do books teach or reveal?" Let me stress that I don't believe in censorship. I may think that the Twilight books and all of their imitations depict extremely unhealthy relationships in a way that tends to glamorize them... but I wouldn't support burning the books even though I despise what they stand for. I just think that we desperately need better written books for young people, books that show readers that it's okay to think for yourself, to stand up for yourself, to have agency in your own life. And if parents are going to let their kids read books like Hush, Hush, it's incumbent on those parents to sit down with their kids and say, "Okay, honey, now we're going to talk about things that it is absolutely not okay for a boy to do to a girl, or vice versa, or any of the other possible gender-based permutations out there." That's the only real solution.

Book swap?

Jun. 10th, 2010 11:09 pm
elbales: (Girl Reading - Perugini)
I have finished with my copy of Cheap: The High Cost of Discount Culture by Ellen Ruppel Shell. Would anyone like to have it?

(Emma, I didn't offer it to you, did I? May is kind of a blur... O_o )
elbales: (Bitch please - BSG)
It has come to my attention that because I took part in one discussion thread on one person's LJ during the flamewars/mobbing incidents about Patricia Wrede's Thirteenth Child, and then posted a follow-up here to say DO NOT EVEN START, BITCHES, I'm now tagged on the Fan History Wiki as a "participant" in the RaceFail 2009 kerfuffle.

Oh, please.

The discussion thread on my friend's LJ was not about the merits, or lack thereof, of Wrede's book; the book's premise (which was pretty weak and very squicky to start with, frankly, and the book itself wasn't all that memorable); or the larger issue over whether racism is Bad. The discussion thread was about incivility and mobbing, though the word mobbing didn't actually put in an appearance.

Let's get it right out there: HELL YES RACISM IS BAD DUH WTF IS WRONG WITH YOU. And no, I don't get to define for other people the things that hurt them and are bad for them. If someone screams "OUCH!" my first reaction is going to be, "Oh crap, I stepped on your foot! I'm so sorry, are you hurt?"— not, "Well, your foot is too big and you shouldn't have stuck it in my way, fool."

But calling me a "participant" on the basis of one post to which I (restating here; the post in question is now private; can you blame a person?) responded, "Yeah, the way people are reacting to this issue—namely, by mobbing—pisses me off" and then one follow-up to warn off the trolls? Overstate much? I didn't exactly go wading into any of the high-traffic pages about the issue. But that's the power of Google for you: now you, too, can easily find conversations to butt into, the better to get all up in people's faces, if that's what floats your boat.

And just to get one more thing out there: If your response to my stepping on your foot is "BITCH GET THE FUCK OFF MY FOOT, YOU WHORE," you can pretty much expect me to quit listening to you. You know, that whole "incivility" thing. And if you get your friends to come by and tell me how unworthy I am, I'm going to consider you a waste of oxygen (you know, that whole "mobbing" thing). So if I accidentally hurt your feelings and you get all up in my face and assume malice, congenital idiocy, racism, or any other thing aside from one of those momentary attacks of The Dumb to which we are all, as humans, susceptible—well, all I have to say to you, cordially, is Fuck you. And I mean that sincerely.

I'd love to take my entry down from the idiotic Wiki, but you know, I'm pretty much stuck with it, the internet being what it is, as I'm sure if my little line in it disappeared, someone would just come along and restore it. Especially in the wake of this post; I'm pretty sure some people make it their life's work to actively search for things to be offended by. (OMG SOMEONE IS WRONG ON THE INTERNET, CALL OUT THE MOBBING MOBS.) That's life. You take the good, you take the bad, etc., etc.

Just don't expect to start anything here, because I will shut down anyone stirring up shit so fast you'll have scorch marks on your ass. I'm leaving this public because the first post was public, and if I'm going up on the bloody FH Wiki as a "participant," this is going up there too, by God.

ETA: Just to further clarify, not that I think my friends need it: I really don't have a problem with apologizing to someone who's saying, OW, that hurt... but if they descend to name-calling, screaming, or accusations that I somehow did it on purpose, I really don't see that I owe them a damn thing. I see people in the anti-racism community insist, over and over, that intent doesn't matter. Well, it's true, as far as it goes: if I hurt someone, they're hurt whether I intended to hurt them or not. Big flaming news flash: That doesn't make it okay to escalate. Seriously. I'll put it a different way: Being hurt does not give anyone license to be an asshole. (I'll make a medical exception for women in childbirth and people passing kidney stones; anyone dealing with chronic pain; and recovering addicts. Yes, you're welcome.)

To be honest? Random internet busybodies coming by my journal to tell me I'm Wrong are more likely to be met with a cold stare than anything else. I don't barge into strangers' front-yard barbecues to tell them they're idiots, even if, walking by, I hear them make snide comments about geeky white chicks, English teachers, or any other group I belong to. I don't have to educate the troglodytes of the world unless they want to pay me my going rate. And you know? THERE IS NOT ENOUGH MONEY IN THE WORLD FOR THAT.

Also, yes, I'm fully aware of the irony in being uncivil while decrying incivility. You don't have to like it; nobody asked you to rope me or my friend into the DIAF-no-you-DIAF pissing match that was RaceFail.
elbales: (Girl Reading - Perugini)
It is Teh Funneh! Also [livejournal.com profile] cleolinda needs the moneys. And it's only US$6.25 and you get it instantly. How cool is that?
elbales: (cupcake - shiny!)
I'm ridiculously behind on updates. So, randomly:

1. Teaching summer school. Last week was 2 of 6. It's going amazingly well and my students are both awesome and happy.

2. Saw Star Trek a few weeks ago. It was a giant steaming plate of meh with a large dollop of lamesauce and a generous side of crunchy-fried plot holes.

3. Summer fruit season. Mmmmm, fruit. Ooh, and there's the microwave announcing that my apricot crisp is done. It's better in the oven, but it's way too damn hot for that. Also there's corn cooling on the stove and my fridge is fully of excellent produce. I loves me some farmer's market.

4. Speaking of the oven, we've been baking bread pretty regularly. Niiiiice.

5. Hardi and I celebrated our twelfth anniversary last weekend. It was lovely. ♥

6. I've been reading a ton of good books lately. *is happy*

7. My container garden is flourishing. Some good lengths of chicken wire wrapped around the benches where the pots are sitting are keeping the cats out, so stuff is finally getting the chance to grow undisturbed. My first johnny-jump-ups and nasturtiums are blooming. Squee.

8. The cats are very well. Such a relief after the last few years of Locke's and Kiri's lives.

9. I haz an iPhone.

10. My arms are much of the suckage. :/

How's by you?
elbales: (Girl Reading - Perugini)
Paperback Swap is one of those cool new economy things where an old-fashioned idea, that of swapping, gets a modern update. You post books you'd be willing to mail to people; in return, you get credits and can request books for other people to mail to you. All you pay for is the postage. I've posted eleven books this evening; one's already set to be mailed as soon as I can get to the post office, and four others have been requested and are just waiting for confirmation that the requesters have enough credits for the books. I know it does happen that people sometimes get burned, but the members are mostly pretty cool.

Reminds me a little of Bruce Sterling's short story "Maneki Neko" from his collection A Good Old-Fashioned Future. Only in that case, the protagonist's PDA is arranging his contributions to a computer-mediated gift economy, and others' PDAs are doing the same thing.

ETA: Almost forgot: If you decide to sign up, I'd be obliged if you'd give them my name as a referrer, as I get credits whenever someone signs up because I referred them. You can give them my e-mail address; if you need it, e-mail or comment and I'll send it to you. (Scraping = DNW.)
elbales: (Cheetah laughing hysterically)
So the fourth Twilight book came out, amidst much fanfare. And within one day, someone started Don't Burn It, Return It. Because... it apparently blew just that hard.

I am amused. It's not nice, but I don't care. It's actually rather loltastic. Not working at a bookstore or a library, unlike others I could name (HI FLIST), I am largely insulated from the frothing sparkly maniacs who make up the majority of the Twilight fan community, but thanks to [livejournal.com profile] cleolinda, I'm rather well informed on the whole thing, and well--


Yeah. You have to have a special kind of talent to write three books that the fans can't get enough of and then to write a fourth that has them so pissed off that they return the book. Some of them are even burning it, apparently.



elbales: (Girl Reading - Perugini)
"The Big Read reckons that the average adult has only read 6 of the top 100 books they've printed."
1) Look at the list and bold those you have read.
2) Italicize those you intend to read.
3) Underline the books you LOVE.
4) Reprint this list in your own LJ so we can try and track down these people who've read 6 and force books upon them ;-)

Right this way )
elbales: (Bitch please - BSG)
Ganked from [livejournal.com profile] litgoddess. Boldface by me.


Idiots. They're making Texas look bad worse. Nice, intelligent people live there! I swear it!
elbales: (No man is an island - John Donne)
Such a pity she's not in the world any more. Her books meant so much to me when I was a kid. She transcended genres. She had a real gift for weaving her faith into her work in a way that felt integral to the story she was telling, but never preachy. She wrote the kind of books that change you.

One of [livejournal.com profile] cleolinda's readers, [livejournal.com profile] faeriemaiden, wrote a lovely and thoughtful tribute to her. I don't know her, but I wanted to share it anyway.

Of all her books, I think A Ring of Endless Light is my favorite. According to her website, new editions of the whole Time Quintet were just released this past May.

I think it's time to re-read.
elbales: (Bitch please saw-whet owl)
Ganked from [livejournal.com profile] cleolinda, who points to the article on Teresa Nielsen Hayden's blog Making Light, which in turn points to the original blog post at the Sydney Morning Herald. [livejournal.com profile] cleolinda sums it up beautifully:

"Australian bookstore chain attempts to shake down small publishers for several thousand dollars each; Tower Books' Michael Rakusin, in turn, takes the bookstore chain to school. As Teresa Nielsen Hayden herself says, 'I just hope Rakusin autographed Rimmer's ass before he handed it to him.'"

His response begins with this volley:
I have to say that my initial response on reading your letter as to how you propose to “manage” your business in the future was one of voluble hilarity, I literally burst out laughing aloud. My second response was to note the unmitigated arrogance of your communication, I could not actually believe I was reading an official letter from Angus & Robertson on an Angus & Robertson letterhead.

elbales: (Never call me - BSG)
Has anyone got a copy of HP7 I can borrow?

Blame it on [livejournal.com profile] marilynsgirl. ;)
elbales: (Girl Reading - Perugini)
Ow, quit it.

(I've borrowed all the prevous ones from the library, or bought them in used paperback because I came to the franchise around POA.)
elbales: (Girl Reading - Perugini)
What Be Your Nerd Type?
Your Result: Literature Nerd

Does sitting by a nice cozy fire, with a cup of hot tea/chocolate, and a book you can read for hours even when your eyes grow red and dry and you look sort of scary sitting there with your insomniac appearance? Then you fit this category perfectly! You love the power of the written word and it's eloquence; and you may like to read/write poetry or novels. You contribute to the smart people of today's society, however you can probably be overly-critical of works.

It's okay. I understand.

Drama Nerd
Social Nerd
Science/Math Nerd
Artistic Nerd
Anime Nerd
Gamer/Computer Nerd
What Be Your Nerd Type?
Quizzes for MySpace

elbales: (Mouse wheel)
So I've been going through the books. I pulled out all of the ones that were just plain bad, lame, or disappointing, and gave them their own little box. That goes to the library.

The bulk of them are books that either H or I liked but that we don't have room to keep, or that weren't quite good enough to make it to the keeper category. There are some series, which I'm bundling together so they don't wander apart in the bags.

There's also the Random pile. A few magazines, four CDs, a couple of litmags from my grad school, stuff like that.

Emma, we have the Gormenghast trilogy (in separate volumes) if you would like it.


elbales: (Default)

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