1 week without a job. My life seems to be wadding together around a few key activities.
- Sleep. Whether I get enough, or not. It’s a preoccupation.
- German philosophy. Lol I knowwwww but it’s hard not to take an interest when the person you talk to most won’t stop talking about Marx.
- Practicing math. For reasons of curiosity, pride, and career goals, I’ve decided to take calculus finally. I’ve spent about 12 hours re-teaching myself precalc on Khan Academy. (I started yesterday.) I WILL test into a legitimate calculus class when the time comes.
- Dicking around in the kitchen. Getting a baking dish so dirty that I have to scrub at it over a number of days, a little at a time. Scrubbing at it whenever the math stuff starts swimming in front of my eyes.
- Job hunt. I’m interviewing at a couple of places right now, I feel like something’s going to break through soon so I’m holding off submitting new applications for a bit. (Related: does every place do 2-3 rounds of interviews now? Is this normal? Seems like a waste of time for all involved.)
- Watching Coffee Prince. Self-explanatory.
Missouri Botanical Garden’s Orchid Folios
Schomburgkia is a genus that no longer exists. The former Schomburgkia orchids are now split between genuses Laelia and Myrmecophila. The taxonomists giveth and taketh away.
What are your Rumblr editors reading this week? Well…
Molly: I’ve been rereading Crime and Punishment and thinking a lot about men who hurt women.
Claire: I’ve been rereading a bunch of stuff by Banana Yoshimoto, light of my teenage life. Stories about weirdos, stories about people who are so quiet, stories about people who can’t stop drifting, stories about people who spend too much time alone. I just finished Asleep, and it was good, but now I probably need to read something with a ton of action so that I don’t get too mopey!
Jen: This week I read The Gifts of the Body by Rebecca Brown which was totally harrowing and beautiful.
Yeah Banana Yoshimoto yeah yeah yeah! I read Kitchen about a month ago & I’m reading N. P. now.
My copy’s from 1994, and the cover has all these blurbs about “the hip young voice of Generation X” and “finding life through coffee and credit cards” and it’s very funny because her books are… not about that. I’d say they’re about reconciling the tension between inner life and outer life. Or between motivation and action, or emotion and expression.
I WISH I’d known about her books when I was a teenager.
In the early 90s Agassi dated American entertainer Barbra Streisand. Writing about the relationship in his 2009 autobiography, he said, “We agree that we’re good for each other, and so what if she’s twenty-eight years older? We’re simpatico, and the public outcry only adds spice to our connection. It makes our friendship feel forbidden, taboo – another piece of my overall rebellion. Dating Barbra Streisand is like wearing Hot Lava.”
BUT it is totally 100% true
there are photos
Also: “another piece of my overall rebellion”
Aries: It’s okay if you don’t know what you’re doing yet, this week. It’s okay if you don’t know where you’re going. It’s okay if you don’t know the shortest path to the life that you’re trying to find. Look at yourself in the mirror and think of all the different haircuts you’ve had, think of all the different faces you’ve worn. Float on your back in a lake, in a pool, in the sea, and think of all the time you have to keep learning how to live.
Thank you annierebekah for reblogging today’s Madame Clairvoyant because mine is suuuuuuper on target, like, I did a LOT of haircut soul-searching today before I even read this (& also today’s my first day of being jobless in 5 years)
Little known fact: this is actually a portrait of me taken from my computer’s camera as I browsed the New York Public Library’s online catalog
Footnotes are starting to vanish from books and appear online instead. Nathan Heller explains why this is a problem:
“If the goal is to retain readers, publishers should show how much books can do. If the object is authority, writers ought to earn it.”
Photograph by Lefteris Pitarakis / AP
Here are some words about footnotes that have stuck with me for 10 years, from Dietrich Schwanitz’s book Bildung: Alles, was man wissen muß. Which, vexingly, does not have an official English translation, though you can read it in Spanish if you wish. The following is my poor attempt at an English translation:
… First and foremost, footnotes provide evidence for the text’s assertions. Footnotes cite sources, documents and records; recall predecessors or contradict them. A footnote is the equivalent of a witness’s statement in court and, like a witness, provides an opportunity for cross-examination. The trial in the footnotes leads to the verdict delivered in the main text.But the real key to understanding footnotes lies in the author’s thirst for fame and glory. David Lodge’s novel Small World opens at an academic conference on medieval romances: Lodge draws a comparison between professors, who go from conference to conference, and jousting knights, who go from tournament to tournament— the professors measure themselves against their academic rivals just as the knights joust for glory. The search for truth is perhaps the most important impetus for research. But the recognition of other researchers is a close second. […]The footnote is the academic’s coat of arms; it proves they are a true researcher, grants them credibility and gives them the right to take part in the tournament. The footnote not only increases the academic’s glory, but simultaneously decreases that of their rivals. The footnote is an all-purpose weapon: some use the footnote as a dagger to stab in the opponent’s back, others as a mace to strike an opponent down, even others use it as a fencing foil in an elegant duel. For this reason, the footnotes are often more interesting than the text. When an argument at a bar gets heated, the quarrelers step outside to brawl in the street; in the same way, academics step from the main text into the footnotes. The footnotes are where the author can show their true face, dropping the mask of respectability they must wear to make their main argument.…However, as every college student in their first semester knows, readings sprinkled with footnotes are an acquired taste. In the main text we might read about Prussian history; but in the footnotes we read the history of how the main text was created. It’s kind of like hearing a joke and having the punchline explained to you at the same time. Or, as Noel Coward said, “Having to read footnotes resembles having to go downstairs to answer the door while in the midst of making love.” To read academic texts, you have to get used to that kind of coitus interruptus.
When my grandmother died the other day, I was taken by surprise. My family had steadily decreased one by one as the years went by, but when it suddenly dawned on my that I was all alone, everything before my eyes seemed false. The fact that time continued to pass in the usual way in this apartment where I grew up, even though now I was here all alone, amazed me. It was total science fiction. The blackness of the cosmos.
Three days after the funeral I was still in a daze. Steeped in a sadness so great I could barely cry, shuffling softly in gentle drowsiness, I pulled my futon into the deathly silent, gleaming kitchen. Wrapped in a blanket, like Linus, I slept. The hum of the refrigerator kept me from thinking of my loneliness. There, the long night came on in perfect peace, and morning came.
From Kitchen, by Banana Yoshimoto.
I finished this book & the novella Moonlight Shadow, bound together in the same volume, while ugly-crying in a cafe in Brooklyn yesterday. Highly recommended.
Nico (mid- to late-70’s)
Nico, looking like the Dark Queen she is
Almost bought a floor-length black wool cape at the flea market yesterday, but I’d already planned my wardrobe purchases for the 4th quarter of 2014.
If I’d remembered this photo of Nico, I would have found some room in the budget.
Japanese artist Azuma Makoto recently ventured to Nevada’s Black Rock Desert to launch a Japanese white pine bonsai into space. The artist also arranged a stunning bouquet with about 30 varieties of flowers from around the world and launched them into space as well. (via TwistedSifter)
Azuma Makoto has come closer to my ideal of the florist as sculptor/performance artist than anyone else I’m aware of
Many who lived through the next thirty days of mounting combat, agony and terror were to remember the sound of endless, repetitious masculine singing as the worst torment of the invasion.
Barbara Tuchman on Germany’s 1914 invasion of Belgium in The Guns of August
(men’s voices are really irritating, aren’t they???)