Friday, August 31, 2007

BCOO: Memoirs of a Geisha, by Arthur Golden

I know more about geisha than I ever wanted to know.

I am really glad to be done with this book. I loved the language in the beginning, but that only took me so far. The central character had no actual character. None that I could find, anyway. It felt like she was simply a tool to teach me about geisha. And I don't want to know about geisha. Maybe I'm forcing my ideals on Japanese culture, but it seems like a completely degrading and socially repugnant practice.

Of course, it didn't help that the author is from Tenessee and male (that's him, on the left of this post). He didn't examine any of the implications of geisha-ism. Maybe that's why people like it.

I'm not saying a male author can't write women characters well - Wally Lamb manages to create a truly believable, extremely troubled woman in She's Come Undone - but this one completely missed the mark for me. He lets the main character think someone is disgusting, but he doesn't let her delve into the depths of her emotion. It just wasn't authentic for me.

As far as the Japanese thing, sure, he has an MA in Japanese History, speaks Mandarin Chinese, and lived in Japan for awhile. Now he lives in Boston, and has written a book tinged with American male sentiment. I didn't buy it.

Next: Slow Man, by J.M. Coetzee. I'm thrilled. I loved Disgrace.

Monday, August 20, 2007

My Wedding

Yes. We did it. And Wallstrip filmed it. Still Amanda Elend, just Mrs. now.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Wallstrip: GPRO

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

New Wallstrip: Malaysia ETF

I learned a lot (ETF, etc.), but we had to go for the LCD, i.e. "Where the fuck is Malaysia?"

Friday, August 03, 2007

BCOO Returns: Diary, a Novel, by Chuck Palahniuk

Just finished Diary, a novel, by Chuck Palahniuk.

I love him. He is unique and can make the most disgusting words beautiful (and vice versa). I didn't like this book as much as I liked Survivor, but I'm still on the Palahniuk love ride.

This book is hard to describe without giving too much away. It is written like...a diary...surprise! A poor woman meets a rich guy and pays a rather hefty price for her happiness.

The novel relies heavily on magical realism and has a distinct ring of fairy tale by the end. I think that's a Palahniuk "thing." The worlds in his novels are always at least hyperbolic, if not fantastical.

I'm sort of rambling here. I JUST finished it, so I haven't had much time to digest. Can't wait to read another of his. Go Portland! (he lives there)

Favorite quotes: "Because everything is important. Every detail. We just don't know why yet."
"What you don't understand, you can make mean anything."
"It's so hard to forget pain, but it's even harder to remember sweetness."

I'm going to take a little time to catch up on my magazines. I have a Bitch, a Paste, and I think two Busts. Hmmm...a bitch, a paste, and a bust. Sounds like a bad sitcom.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Can I have an abortion please?

State legislators in Ohio want to give fathers a FINAL say before a woman gets an abortion. And they mean final.

Before having an abortion, a woman must have the written consent of the father. THE father. The man she slept with. If she doesn't know who the father is (maybe the man who raped her?), she must submit a list of "possible" fathers. The physician would have to conduct paternity tests and, after determining who the father is, get his signed consent.

WHAT THE FUCK??!!! I understand the desire to give men a say, but I'm not sure I agree with it. I know it affects men's lives, but not nearly as much as it affects women's. I have to admit, I feel like it's the woman's body, she gets to decide.

All that aside: a list? possible fathers? paternity tests? Imagine what that does to the woman.

And again, what if the woman was raped? What the fuck is she supposed to do then?

This CAN'T go anywhere. It's just another bunch of guys, led by Rep. John Adams, who think they have the right to decide what women can and can't do with their bodies. I don't know, though. With the current climate, anything is possible.

Hang on to your wood: New wallstrip