Never on a Wednesday

Apr. 19th, 2014 18:29
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[personal profile] naraht
I've been doing quite a bit of reading recently. I decided about a week ago that I was spending too much time reading endlessly on the internet, seemingly mostly luggage reviews. (I'm not kidding either.) I don't mean "too much" in the moral sense but more in the sense of "got caught in a suboptimal valley where I could have been doing other things that I would have enjoyed more." So I've been trying to close the laptop a little more and pursue other activities, which is why you may not have seen me around very much. Anyway...

Recently finished
Completely randomly, but mostly thanks to Virago Modern Classics, I discovered the work of Molly Keane on a library shelf. She seems like one of those writers who really ought to be better known. Early twentieth century Anglo-Irish country house stories, very psychological, often about hunting, often about controlling mothers.

So far I've read The Rising Tide (extremely good, reminded me of Rebecca, couldn't say exactly why), Young Entry (very amusing), Loving Without Tears (interestingly features a young man named Julian who comes home from the RAF after WWII with a considerably older fiancee, reads more like a play than a novel but not in a bad way), and Full House (didn't quite get on with it, the tone was a bit different than the others and it felt it was trying too hard to be profound). There are plenty more to go!

Also I just finished Martin Pugh's 'We Danced All Night': A Social History of Britain Between the Wars, which seemed a lot more focused and narrative than Juliet Gardiner's comparable volume about the thirties. I collected a lot of useful numbers, like how much it cost to study at Oxford, go through medical school, buy a medical practice or buy a house.

Currently reading
Somewhat between books at the moment. I am reading The Japanese Self in Cultural Logic by Takie Sugiyama Lebra, which I don't feel qualified to assess but I'm certainly finding it interesting!

To read
Lots and lots of books, including some mentioned in the discussion that [personal profile] oursin recently hosted on literature featuring older woman/younger man pairings. I just picked up Elizabeth von Arnim's Love and found myself flipping to the end to see if it had a happy ending. I'm shocked at myself! I often read the last few pages of books out of perverse curiosity, since it doesn't spoil much for me, but since when have I cared about happy endings? As said, utterly shocked.
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Who's having a writing weekend?

(no subject)

Apr. 19th, 2014 08:24
laceblade: Mikage from Silver Spoon anime, on a horse. (Silver Spoon: Mikage)
[personal profile] laceblade
This past week, I didn't ride Chief during my lesson. Instead, I rode a horse named Jake.

Jake's owner had a lesson directly preceding mine, so I think it helps my instructor out from doing parts of our lessons at the same time. It also gave me more riding time, because Jake was already saddled up when I arrived.

However, Jake does English-style, which means that when I ride him, I'm doing English-style.
I really prefer Western style so far. I like being able to hold on to the pommel of the saddle when I want. I like the way one holds the reins Western-style than English-style. I feel much more in control.

Chief and I had been working on turning and stopping, trying to get me better precision.

With Jake, I worked on posting, which involves getting him to trot & then having me try to stand up in the stirrups every time his "outside" front leg hits the ground. So...basically rapid bouncing up & down. I really didn't like this, lol. When Jake is trotting, I feel like I have absolutely no control & I'm about to fall off, because there's nothing to hold on to. I can grasp part of his mane, but that doesn't really make me feel secure.
For whatever reason, I had much better rhythm going clockwise than counter-clockwise.

Later in the lesson, Jake spooked. Unlike Chief's spook, which feels like he just misses a step, Jake pinned his ears down & streaked after another horse who was in the arena. I shouted & almost fell off. Actually, I was positive I was going to fall off, but luckily I didn't!

The other women in the room (my instructor, another student of hers who has much more experience & who owns Jake, & a woman who boards her horses there & was riding them around) were very supportive, praising me for holding on & not falling off, & also bringing Jake to a halt.

STILL, it was pretty scary. I'll be excited to ride Chief again.

Currently, my dream is to someday ride outside. We need to wait for it stay lighter further into the evening before that happens. When I was leaving, a women who boards horses (whose name I can't remember & mentally refer to as "Glory's owner") & my instructor were talking about night rides. Glory's owner said that at the previous place she boarded, the owner-dude took her on a night ride. Glory's owner said she couldn't see her hand in front of her face, so the point is to trust your horse & just let them take you through the woods.

This sounds frightening, but in previous lessons my instructor had been having me take my hands off the reins & close my eyes while letting Chief walk wherever he wanted. This was to help me get a better idea of how Chief moves & to relax in the saddle. I think it'd be scarier to be holding on to the reins, but still unable to see anything, & having the horse be walking on uneven terrain next to branches/etc. ;_;
ANYWAY, this increased my esteem for the other riders, lol.
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[personal profile] snarp
Second Life is still pretty much the only thing like Second Life out there, and it is still a complete fucking mess.

Catching up

Apr. 18th, 2014 15:12
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[personal profile] sanet
Another spring, and another term over! When so much time goes by, it becomes impossible to sum up all the individual things that have happened. So instead, here are some general reflections on how I've changed my perspective and opened up my life in the last year.

Because you know what? I feel like I’ve found some sort of secret key for joyful living this year. I thought that yesterday as I walked to a jazz band rehearsal. (I'm in a jazz band now. True story.) I felt like I’d found the secret to happiness. But when I tried to pin it down, it eluded words, or came out too simple. “I just do what makes me happy!” Yes, that’s it! And not it, not entirely. The entire “it” can’t be captured. It’s a feeling of going down the right path, knowing what I do is for the best, living authentically. Just…living.

Secret to Happiness below. Caveat: YMMV )

(no subject)

Apr. 18th, 2014 13:09
snarp: small cute androgynous android crossing arms and looking very serious (Default)
[personal profile] snarp
fall down stairs
oriolegirl: (work)
[personal profile] oriolegirl posting in [community profile] academy_of_words
Having modem woes which will not get fixed until Saturday afternoon (I hope they will get fixed!). I hope everyone is writing and having good days.

Me: Why do I feel terrible?

Apr. 17th, 2014 16:35
snarp: small cute androgynous android crossing arms and looking very serious (Default)
[personal profile] snarp
Me: Oh, it's because it's 4:30 PM, and all I've eaten today is a stale muffin.
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Writing Wednesday? Anyone?
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Miscellany

Apr. 15th, 2014 15:11
troisroyaumes: Painting of a duck, with the hanzi for "summer" in the top left (Default)
[personal profile] troisroyaumes
1. Talking on the phone in English to people I don't know is stressful enough, but talking on the phone in Korean to people I don't know is like fodder for "hilariously sad moments in the life of an average 재미교포"...

2. As a corollary to the above, I now have KakaoTalk. Apparently, most of my Korean-American friends were already using it. I guess I should teach my parents how to use it too so they don't get too socially isolated. (It's very popular with their generation.)

3. By the way, Wiscon panels for sageuk and wuxia need more volunteers.

4. If you signed up for Flight Rising, let me know, so I can friend you and send you dragons and items!

5. Can't figure out how to fix my alignments so I'm going to sit around and listen to Coursera lecture videos. Who knows, maybe inspiration will strike in the tedium of listening to a review of basic R syntax.
oriolegirl: (work)
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What's going on this Tuesday?
oriolegirl: (work)
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How's the writing going?
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Rift is bad at birthday parties.

Apr. 14th, 2014 13:08
snarp: small cute androgynous android crossing arms and looking very serious (Default)
[personal profile] snarp
When you hit level 50, the city throws you a party, where you have to fight a big death-spider from another dimension and watch Uriel and Kira's marriage disintegrating. It's not a very good party. Adriana even doesn't even show up, I guess she's too busy being an Attack on Titan character up in Stillmoor.

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Andrea J. Horbinski

April 2014

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