Yes It's a Meme

I used that title so that anyone who is seriously disinterested in this can simply skip my blog today.

This post is courtesy of our favorite grumpy gal, Kathy.   She tagged me a while ago, stating that she wanted to get into my brain.  If that's the case it would certainly go a long way to explain the voices (kidding, kidding).  Sorry, Kathy, that it took me this long to write this.   So much writing lately, so little time.  Know what I mean?

The trick with this meme will be to convince someone that I didn't spend the last year  knitting feverishly.  I did indeed spend most of the last year knitting, and it is only recently that I again began to carry a book with me wherever I go.  My vocabulary has seriously suffered from my lack of challenging reading in the past several moths.  It's either that or the booze (kidding, kidding).

1. How many books do I have?

I have a small bookshelf with a rotating selection of volumes.  After my move two years ago, I had a serious heart-to-heart with myself about my book collection.  Books that had not been or would not be read were boxed up and given to a book fair.  Since that time I've been reluctant to stockpile book after book after book.  The Boston Public Library is a terrific resource for the minimalist reader.

2.  What's my current read, or what's the last book that I bought?

At Knit's End, by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee.  I bought the book a few days before I saw The Harlot in person.  I'm enjoying it thoroughly.  It's entertaining, thought provoking, and there have been more than one occasion when I've wanted to shout "Yes! Yes! Me too!" to no one in particular after reading a particular passage.  It's a great way to clear out a corner of a subway car, let me tell you!

3.  What is the last book that I read:

Tears of the Giraffe.  I've been on a mystery kick lately.  My last two reads have been part of the Number 1 Ladies Detective Agency series, by Alexander McCall Smith.  Both were purchased at Brookline Booksmith--the store that very generously lets us knitters take over its Used Book Cellar every Sunday afternoon.   Every week people walk down those stairs and think "what are all these knitters doing here? I thought that this was a bookstore."

4.  List 5 books that mean a lot to you.

Kathy's list got me thinking.  There are a lot of books and authors that I've enjoyed, but they're not books that I go back to again and again, or books that I would miss if they suddenly disappeared.  Here are a list of five books which I find useful, almost on a daily basis, or which are special to me:

  1. The Death and Life of Great American Cities, Jane Jacobs.  If you live in a city and haven't read this book, then shame on you.  It could stand some editing (the story I heard was that Ms. Jacobs was so stung by editors' attempts to align her writing to then-current urban-planning theories that she would allow the book to be published only in an unedited state), but the ideas contained within are so completely right.  Ms. Jacobs is still alive and lives (I believe) in Toronto, Ontario.   We've come a long way since 1961, and I wish that she'd consider publishing a new edition that had been thoroughly reviewed by a thoughtful editor.
  2. Vogue Knitting.  My knitting bible.  Need I say more?
  3. The Oxford New French Dictionary.  In my never-ending quest to make up for not learning another language as a child, my French-English dictionary makes some of my daily blog reads possible.
  4. Gone With the Wind.  I read the book only once, a long time ago, but it marks the first time that I didn't shy away from a book of 800-something pages simply because it would take too long to read.  I wanted GWTW to go on forever.
  5. The Penguin Dictionary of Architecture.  This probably isn't the world's best architectural dictionary, but it's nothing to sneeze at.  It's my reference book of choice when I'm at the office.

5.  To whom will I pass this?

I think that I'm the last person in Blogland to complete this meme.  If you want to do it, consider yourself "tagged".


ha! i read gone with the wind the first time when i was in the 7th or 8th grade and it was the 1024 pages or so that scared me. and like you i was sad when it ended.

Thanks for answering, Colleen! It does appear that you are not me, I'm a bit relieved. For one, I do not speak French. Two, not a big fan of mystery. But architecture, yes, I have an interest in that. And the knitting, of course, the knitting ties us all together.

I'm your twin as far as reading becoming overtaken by knitting for the past year. Thank goodness I read a really great novel by Anita Brookner this month and it jump started my reading yen. :)

Fun reading your responses. What good use of the French dictionary!!


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