Book review of Surfaces and Essences: Analogy as the Fuel and Fire of Thinkin by Douglas R. Hofstadter and Emmanuel Sander
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Since implmenting screen-free Sundays, we've been playing more board games and Clue is one of those featured. We decided to share this with the kids and they really loved it. We tried to explain the multiple endings and I can't wait until they are older and can see other classic Tim Curry works.
Book review of Poetry for For Teenage Girls With Wild Ambitions and Trembling Hearts by Clementine von Radics
Very similar to her video linked here, but in 2nd person, and it was really good.
Read it to my teenager and I think she liked it. Because the book form doesn't name each woman directly, she liked trying to figure out which girl each stanza was about as I read it.
Book review of Poetry for Kids: Emily Dickinson, by Emily Dickinson and Susan Snively (editor)
Read this aloud to my kids, one poem a day. I'm glad it had a couple of her classics and ones I remembered from my mom's Dickinson book from when I was a kid. The illustrations were lovely, too. Good for elementary and middle school. A high schooler might enjoy it too, but as it's more of a picture book, it may turn them off.
Watching "I Had an Abortion" on Kanopy. It's distributed by Women Make Movies. It chronologically highlights the experiences of women who had abortions in the 1930s up until the move was created in 2005. This includes famous Gloria Steinem, but also, at the 34:20 mark, a woman named Jenny Egan, who grew up Mormon. Some women already had children, some would later have children, and some never had any. With 1/4 women in the United States having an abortion at some point in her life, it's important to listen to these stories and keep abortion safe and legal.
I'm riding in the Cycles of Change Bike-a-thon in June. I'll be doing laps around Lake Merritt for an hour and you can donate a sum, to support Cycles of Change. Cycles of Change provides bikes and bike education to East Oakland youth.
The Bike-a-thon will be live-streamed, too. So feel free to watch on June 18.
Another family movie night flick. This one was really good. The same studio made Into the Spiderverse and you can tell they are testing the bounds of computer animation in this new one just as much as the Spiderverse. I told my husband that it's like Pixar isn't even trying anymore and now Sony Animation is giving them a run for their money and being the creative leaders in the animation space.
Oh man, this journey looks amazing. I love the cold and ice and can just imagine the sensory deprivation that the snow causes, absorbing all the sound, mixed with the cracking ice. Oh I want to do this ride. Beautiful images in this short movie.
This short came out a couple of months ago, but since I'm revisiting stuff for National Bike Month, I thought I'd share it here.
Very important stuff about weight and fatness and perception about what different bodies are capable of and are allowed to do. This is definitely more of a beginning of a conversation and not an end. Maybe Shimano will make more? I'm not sure if they will. I went ahead and followed Kailey and Marley on social media anyway. Bikes are not just for thin or straight-sized people.
This is one show that I kind of got tired of, but my husband is a completionist. It's got great laughs for when you need something light. I think the best episode may be the Prince episode. Finally finished this!
The Bicycle Film Festival is virtual this year and we bought the tickets for the San Francisco screening time. We loved it- a wonderful mix of the previous years' films and new ones. Some from the 2012 Olympics, and one from the BLM protests of 2020. I loved the first animation one. Very cute. Highly recommend watching it. My kids really got into it and one now wants to try BMX.
This is one of those movies where I used a random number generator to pick the movie and so I watched it. It's a British comedy horror film from 1990. That'll tell you enough about the level of humor and scariness there is. It's all very highly contrived, but does keep to the vampire tropes of anti-sunlight, anti-garlic, wooden stakes, crucifixes, and drinking blood. So there's that.
Bonus surprise: Anthony Daniels (C3PO) is the priest.
I acquired a hot water bottle heater about a year ago and intended to make a cozy for it and finally did so. I'm very excited about it and I used up a whole leftover skein of yarn for it, so that is great. Use up that stash.
Book review of Hellboy: Into the Silent Sea by Mike Mignola
This is a great short and it took me way too long to read it because my life is too busy. I loved the inclusion of the poetry (poetry + comics = love) and it’s just a nice Hellboy adventure. I need to re-read The Rime of the Ancient Mariner.
I was elected to the Board of Clojurists Together this month. I was surprised as I didn't feel as qualified as so many of the other candidates, but I am grateful for the opportunity and am excited for this opportunity.
I have both wide and small feet, so I made the largest size around, but the smallest row count. I'm always surprised at how well felting works and the magical fabric structure and texture resulting from it. I love this. They stay on and I was able to throw away my old slippers (RIP Batman slippers).
I knew about prison, hospital, and military chaplains and have friends who have been prison and hospital chaplains, but I learned that Tyson Foods employs 200 chaplains for their meat facilities, and that there are Nascar Chaplains. I also learned more about the Chaplain of the United States Senate (and apparently, House of Representatives). I think that attending to people's spiritual and emotional needs, non-denominationally, is a vital part of humanity that gets overlooked.
I've linked to the Kanopy page for watching it since it is free through many libraries, including my local Oakland Library.
I expected this to be mainly about the camp, but it is really mostly about how Section 504 and the ADA came to be. This is very important history and too recent- we should have had these changes much sooner, and there is so much to do yet for disability rights. It should have won the Oscar over My Octopus Teacher, absolutely. Should be required watching for teens when learning about civil rights- disabilty rights are just not taught about in school. And anyone at any time can become disabled. So important for everyone.
I have not seen the anime- maybe I should now. I went into this only knowing that it was supposed to be scary. I found the time limits and the structure of the world/magic really engaging. and had fun the whole time.
Now here's a classic I never got around to watching as a teen! I'm glad I got to watch it with my kids, though. Jack Black does everything right here and the kids are outstanding (some even went on to become professional musicians). Wonderful messages about drive, learning, and body confidence. Definitely recommend. Remind yourself what learning is really about, especially in this virtual schooling pandemic time.
I did not watch this as it came out- I was a little young when it started and busy with my life by the time I was a teen. I started watching Buffy from the beginning 8 years ago when it was on Netflix, but then it was moved off and we watched it on Facebook Watch and then to Hulu, which we just recently got. A lot has happened in those 8 years and the whole last season was colored by Charisma Carpenter's startements of how terrible Whedon is. Veronica Mars. We watched Angel concurrently with Buffy so that we could watch where the crossovers happen. I absolutely believe Carpenter and I wish there was something I could enjoy without knowing that slimy people were behind it. I wish Gellar had more gumption about making statements like Carpenter does, but I also understand if she wants a break from that mess. It's easy to get typecast. As with everyone else, "Once More With Feeling," was a lot of fun. I think if you want to watch a show that takes place in SoCal with a blonde, early college-aged woman tackling issues like sexual assault in the early 2000s, you'll do better to watch
Book review of I Gave Her a Name by Rachel Hunt Steenblik
I think I prefer the shorter book, Mother's Milk, by Steenblik. This had some lovely poems in it, though. Maybe it suffers from the lack of novelty that the first book had? I liked it. I didn't get the version with the color images, so I can't say anything about that. Absolutely would gift this book.
Book review of The Fire Next Time by James Baldwin
This is a very quick listen/read, but you need to pause and think about it. Very important reading- they should have had us read this in school. It consists of two letters and the letter format makes it really accessible. We still have so far to go with racism in this country.
The story of this octopus is a sad one. I was not interested in Foster's story or why he ended up filming in a South African kelp forest. White man tears. But the octopus- I really liked her. Foster forms this friendship, but when the octopus is in need in a shark attack where she loses an arm, he doesn't do anything. I just think that if this octopus is as advanced as a dog or cat, she probably felt a little bit betrayed that her human friend just stood by. I get that he wanted to "leave nature alone" but he wasn't doing that to start with. Introducing an observer absolutely changes the environment.
But did I get teary when she died and meditate on my own mortality? Yes, I did.
Book review of Trans-Galactic Bike Ride: Feminist Bicycle Science Fiction Stories of Transgender and Nonbinary Adventurers by Lydia Rogue
We Bike Book Club April 2021
I really enjoyed this collection of short stories. In other feminist sci-fi short story compilations by Microcosm Publishing, you get a few inexperienced writers and the writing suffers from that, but this collection is full of professional writers, which made it really enjoyable to read. Definitely recommend for the bicycle science fiction readers out there.
It took me more than 2 months to make this sweater. It's oversized so that it will be warm and cozy. I finished it on a particularly warm day this spring, but it's supposed to get chilly again and I'm glad I have a new sweater in the rotation. There are 3 big mistakes in it, but I'm sure no one else can tell.
I don't know why I started watching this- I think because it started related to biking, though I'm not really into road bike racing. And then it turned into quite the affair! Fogel really hit the jackpot by starting to work with Rodchenkov just before all the Russian drugging scandal happened. It was really interesting. I didn't pay much attention to the Russian doping scandal when it happened, but since the Olympics are this summer again, it's good to catch up on it.
These were definitely made to be watched together, so here they are. Lots of plot holes, if you give it a think. Do they really think leaving Jennifer in the future would work? Also, if going forward to the future and then back splits timelines so much, how come future Biff's travel back and forward didn't split the timeline? Also, typical Hollywood portrayal of Native Americans, so that's not cool.
But the kids found it very fun.
This was from the Knitcrate box in February; I like to work the pattern that comes with the yarn because I'm really into randomness and I like doing things I didn't have to plan myself. These took 2 weeks to make- one week for each sleeve. I had to use smaller needles so I went up to the XL size. They are a gift for someone and from the pictures I have of her, I think they'll fit. I have beefy biceps so if it fits me, it's probably good.
Not sure what to do with the leftovers. Maybe baby booties.
Book review of Passing by Nella Larsen
Read this for the RS book group April 21.
I listened to the audiobook. It was very quick. I started it before I knew that it is counted among the works created during the Harlem Renaissance.
It was easy to listen to and you are definitely left with questions. I'm on side "she was pushed."
Watched this one with the kids for movie night. They are finally at the age where they can really enjoy movies and the references. It had been a while since I had seen it and it was still good. The writers really thought out almost everything. The kids are excited to watch the next one.
Having been Mormon and interested in Mormon history, the Hoffman forgeries and bombings were not unknown to me and I new the basic story. This fleshes out what I knew, but leaves out some key aspects: that one of the keys aspects of putting Hoffman on the suspect list was the differing story he told about how he was blown up in the car vs. the story that forensics found (that he wasn't fully sitting in the car, otherwise how would he have been blown across the street). It doesn't go into why we was there messing with the bomb in his car, either.
But very importantly, it completely skips the women involved, particularly Kathy Sheets. Because she wasn't a targeted victim, the documentary doesn't go into her story or the people she left behind. Leave it to men- tangentially-related-to-Mormonism to leave women out of their documentary. I'd also be interested in what has happened to Hoffman's wife in the years since. They interviewed her, but mostly on the past. She's still around so maybe that was left out for privacy reasons.