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Friday, July 29, 2011

Off to the Mitten

I'm going to Michigan to visit my family for the next week, so blogging should be light for the next week...LOL! As if that'll be any different than the last few months.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Backyard Reclamation Project

The garden is a disaster. My peas got root rot. My green beans died inexplicably. My lettuce went to seed. My broccoli is being eaten up by bugs. The only thing growing are the carrots but they are growing slowly and fitfully so I'm worried they'll find some crazy disease to die of.

So, I tore everything up and planted again. The great thing about hobbies like gardening and writing is that you can always start over. As long as the will and the joy is there you can always pull it up and begin again, no worse for the experience. We'll see how this batch goes, and hopefully soon i will have some pictures of awesome carrots for you all to ogle.

As far as the rest of the backyard goes, I've started the mulch pile and so I should have glorious new dirt in a few months. I'm waiting for the late summer specials on swingsets for Lil' Man and once we have the set installed I can build the pathways and all the other doodads I plan on adding to the yard. I'm thinking everything'll be done by the winter...but then again houses are a lot like gardening and writing too, they're never really complete.

I'll post some pictures soon.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Mergers and Acquisitions

Mergers

Moby Dick by Herman Melville - I have been trying to read this book for about a year but the rigidly Romantic prose and the overly long start kept me from getting too far, but about a month ago I decided to buckle down and finish the damn thing. I'm over 100 pages into the Dick and it's really starting to grow on me. It's florid, sure, and prone to bizarre flights of whimsy and academic naturalism, but there is a sense of foreboding and discomfort that is palpable and reading an author who immersed himself so intensely in his subject matter is instructive. I'll let you know how this goes.

Bon Iver, Bon Iver [+Digital Booklet]- Good Lord this dude is blowing my mind. My wifey decided to buy Bon Iver's newest record (self-titled) based on the recommendation of a friend, and from the first few bars of the first song I got the chills and knew that this record was going to latch onto my heart and shake me loose. It's gorgeous and billowing like a chilly Midwestern November wind, standing in the snow and looking through a frosted window at a warm fire and an empty room.

I liked Bon Iver so much that I immediately went out* and bought his first record, For Emma, Forever Ago, and haven't stopped listening to these two albums back to back to back for the last month and a half. They've so monumentally dug themselves into my consciousness that they have become my entire writing playlist, displacing almost everything else except Sigur Ros, choice Dylan, and The National. The long and short of it, buy both of these records. Now.

Mumford and Sons, Sigh No More - Poor Mumford and his poor, poor sons. If it wasn't for their broken-hearted soul-brother to the North, Bon Iver, this album would be the only thing I was raving about. Unfortunately Bon is too awesome to be second place, and so Mumford waits in the wings, perpetually the bridesmaid, never the bride. But this album is so great, from start to finish. I've heard this band labeled as freak folk and that tag suits me. It's like a mishmash of every folk genre, with a heavy dose of bluegrass and tied together with Irish punk vocals. It's a bizarre mix but it's earnest and cool and beautiful at all the right times.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Random kindnesses

This is completely unrelated to writing, but I found this in my neighborhood on a recent run and it tickled me enough that I thought I'd snap a picture and show it to y'all. This tree has so many figs on it, I was really tempted to grab a few but I had no pockets and I was only half way done with the run, so I let it be. But I'll be back. Oh yes, I'll be back.