Sunday, April 03, 2011

Links/Musings

Links

Not other blogs, but random stuff on the internet which I find interesting...

Pinterest. Social bookmarking site.  Not unusual, but a really nice visual format.  You create "boards" for different categories and pin things to them.  Pretty cool to see what others come up with--right now I'm looking at a vintage ad for Lisa Frank stationery--that stuff was a lot more expensive when I was a kid, which makes me perfectly happy.

Frescoz Direct link to a little Shockwave-powered game.  It's a sort of puzzle game--you build mosaics, working to finish ahead of your opponent--if you do, his score is added to yours as a bonus.

Stumptuous  I keep forgetting to mention this to Breda, so I'm putting it here.  Woman-centric weightlifting, concentrating on freeweights, which of course are better for you.  Weightlifting can get pretty sexist.  I made a Freudian slip in a comment on Breda's Facebook status the other day, saying that one of the advantages of the gym is the "nice racks of all the dumbbells".  No more commenting before noon.

One Pretty Thing  This website is very aspirational for me.  Links to patterns and tutorials for all sorts of stuff.  Most in forms of crafts I'm not very good at.  True story: I learned how to sew in high school, but it didn't stick with me.  Luckily for Erik, the lessons on how to make fried chicken and biscuits did.  My most-cherished lesson from Food Science & Nutrition?  How to neatly cut a sandwich--almost no pressure on the knife & use a gentle sawing motion.  Probably old news to 99% of the population, but it was revelatory for me.

Musings

I came thisclose to changing my blog design again.  Decided not to.  I am very tempted to redo at least the header image.  It's been up there since 2007...

I seriously need to buy a can of compressed air and try to clean the crumbs out of my keyboard.  My space bar keeps sticking.  Made typing out the blockquote further down kind of a pain in the ass--I type some 70wpm & have very few typos when keys aren't being a bitch.

Look who is spending more & more time on her belleh:

She is right at my computer in this picture.  Baby go'n' be a blogger soon as she learns to type.

I am also thisclose to going off on my church in this blog.  I'm awaiting a response from the rector over an issue I had last Sunday, and if I don't hear from him by this coming Tuesday, it's on.  Being that this is me we're dealing with, y'all can probably guess what it's about.

I am reading Tim O'Brien's The Things They Carried for American Lit II.  It's a group of loosely-linked short stories about Vietnam which (from what I gather) tread the line between fiction and nonfiction.  It's fantastic (and old, so you may well have read it already).  From that book:

The truths are contradictory.  It can be argued, for instance, that war is grotesque.  But in truth war is also beauty.   For all its horror, you can't help but gape at the awful majesty of combat.  You stare out at tracer rounds unwinding through the dark like brilliant red ribbons.  You crouch in ambush as a cool, impassive moon rises over the nighttime paddies. You admire the fluid symmetries of troops on the move, the harmonies of sound and shape and proportion, the great sheets of metal-fire streaming down from a gunship, the illumination rounds, the white phosphorous, the purply orange glow of napalm, the rocket's red glare.  It's astonishing.  It fills the eye.  It commands you.  You hate it, yes, but your eyes do not.  Like a killer forest fire, like cancer under a microscope, any battle or bombing raid or artillery barrage has the aesthetic purity of absolute moral indifference--a powerful, implacable beauty--and a true war story will tell the truth about this, though the truth is ugly.
Lyle Lovett covered Robert Earl Keen's "The Front Porch Song."  His version sucks.  Sorry, Lyle.  From REK it is a personal vignette.  From Lovett, it sounds pretentious.  Especially the lines about enchiladas.

The grocery budget for the month is gone, and I have a mad hankering for something sweet.  Probably best that I...oh dear God, I just remembered I have a bar of 72% cacao dark chocolate around her somewhere.  Come to mama!

6 comments:

Eowyn said...

If you're considering redesigning your blog, please consider the background. When I view it, the background is a bilious green, shading to yellowish on the bottom and a darker greyish shade up top.

The end result, with the black letters, is that only the bottom half of the screen is easily readable. Since I normally advance by a full page worth at a time, when reading, this means I am constantly squinting to make out what you say/write.

(Yeah, I know, ironic place to unlurk, but I have been enjoying the blog, and the readability issue from the background makes that harder ...)

Dave said...

I am very tempted to redo at least the header image.

I have always liked that header. I think the first time I found your blog, I just assumed it was a picture of the trailer park you lived in! It has character.

That's a happy looking baby, right there, by the way.

peter d said...

I had to read an excerpt from The Things They Carried last spring. I thought it sucked. Was pretty boring. One would think it would be hard to make a war story boring but he succeeded with flying colors.

Sabra said...

Eowyn, I have given up on the idea of a background image completely. Please let me know if you have trouble with this background, as it is a bit dark.

Dave, if I recall correctly, that was an image I took from Googling "paradise trailer park" or some such. It reminded me a lot of where I used to live just after high school. The one I was in at the time was nowhere near as picturesque.

Peter, I always was the sibling with good taste. Heh.

thesouthtexaspistolero said...

I always did think Lyle Lovett sounded a lot more, ah, uptown than REK, even though I do like him a lot.

Eowyn said...

Sabra, this background is a definite improvement. It may be dark, but it is the same darkness consistently over the whole screen, so I am not straining to read the first few rows.

Thank you.