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Tag Archives: television

So, I wasn’t completely honest with you guys yesterday. About my reading.

I am reading The Canterbury Tales and Wizard and Glass, or I was. No. I am. I’m just taking a little break, you know.

But, what I didn’t tell you yesterday was that this weekend, between (and sometimes during!) my outings with my husband’s family, I was cheating on these two books with another book. One that is from the wrong side of the tracks. Let’s just say that I’ve been paying attention to the bad boy as of late.

I’ve been known to do this…sometimes I just want something “bad”. Something that I am too embarassed to even add to my books on Goodreads. But, I might as well do it now since I’m coming clean here.

And everyone on the internets has been talking about it, there’s been movie-making talk, and Ryan Gosling’s picture was associated with the main character of it in one of the articles I read, and I have been loving Ryan Gosling this weekend (I watched Crazy Stupid Love on Friday).

Alright, alright, just come out with it!

Umm. Okay.

Here goes all of my credibility out the window…

Just do it! Maybe someone else has read it too.

None of my friends on Goodreads have.

Everyone reads trash at times. Most of them don’t even know it. At least you know it is!

Yes. Ok. Well, I’ve been reading…on my Kindle app…just type it already!

Fifty Shades of Grey!!!

There. I said it. And you know what else?

I kinda like it.

I don’t know why…I’ve told you all before that I’m a mood reader. And, for some reason, this book has fit my mood. And people have these kinds of moods, right? I mean, I know that Harlequin novels sell like crazy.

Now, I don’t like it in the 5 stars way…in fact, I’m not even sure that I’m going to review it. How can you judge something objectively when you are simply reading something in spite of your objectivity. I NEEDED A BREAK!

So, I don’t know. Judge me as you will, but I must admit that I feel better now that I’ve gotten that off my chest.

While I’m at it, I’ll admit one more thing…I watch The Voice on Mondays! A reality singing show. It goes against everything I espouse about quality television, but I do. I watch mainly because…I’ll admit yet another thing…Tony Lucca, my childhood crush, is competing on the show. I used to watch him on The Mickey Mouse Club on Disney Channel when I was 11 or 12. So, I’m supporting my childhood TV boyfriend. And, I still think he’s cute.tony Lucca Mickey Mouse Club MMC The Voice

Alright, I’m going to disappear again. I have been hiding from the internet for the past few days in shame. I’ll finish the book soon, and then I’ll be right back to normal.

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Tonight’s the night! Season 5 of Mad Men premieres on AMC at 9:00! Two hours!

While I haven’t had to wait as long as other fans (I only just started watching seasons 1-4 in November), I am still very excited to see what’s happening to my favorite characters!

So, today I will be gearing up for the premiere by watching some of my favorite episodes from the past seasons (all previous seasons are streaming on Netflix). These favorite episodes include:

-Warning: Don’t Click on These if You Haven’t Watched the Show–Synopses Contain Spoilers!-

“A Night to Remember” Season 2: Episode 8

“Six-Month Leave” Season 2: Episode 9

“Meditations in an Emergency” Season 2: Episode 13

“Out of Town”: Season 3: Episode 1

“My Old Kentucky Home”: Season 3: Episode 3

“The Grown-Ups”: Season 3: Episode 12

“Shut the Door. Have a Seat.” Season 3: Episode 13

And most, if not all, of Season 4 (definitely my all-time favorite episode “The Suitcase” and the finale).

Other Mad Men Links That Have Me All Worked Up!

While watching the last two episodes of The Walking Dead (also on AMC), I loved these Mad Men trailers that link up my two favorite shows! Check ’em out!

and my personal favorite

“and drinks like Hershel used to…” my favorite line!

Book Riot has posted a couple of bookish posts on Mad Men. First, there’s “Recommended Books for the Characters of MAD MEN”. Then, there’s also “Nonfiction for the Life and Times of MAD MEN“.

There’s a lot of reading being done on Mad Men. Flavorwire has compiled “The Definitive ‘Mad Men’ Reading List” for any fans who want to read along. Also, they’ve pulled together a 1966 playlist to act as soundtrack for this season. Check it out!

Then, for those of us planning to really celebrate the return of Mad Men, there’s tips and recipes for throwing a Mad Men premiere party. I think I might try out Joanie’s famous Ginger Snap and Roger Sterling’s Party Nuts!

Can you tell how excited I am? So excited! Just wait until you see how excited I am for the premiere of Game of ThronesI’m gonna be nuts!


Wow, this week went by slowly!

It’s finally the weekend, and it couldn’t have come any slower. This was one of those weeks where it went by so slowly that I almost feel that it should be next week by now.

But, the week is over now, and I have a lot of bookish things on my radar that I wanted to share.

Currently, I am still reading The Waste Lands by Stephen King. While it’s hard to put down when I’m reading it, in the last couple of days, I haven’t been able to squeeze in time to read! So, I’m hoping that I can get some reading done this weekend, although it’s unlikely that it will happen because I’m gearing up for…

Mad Men! The two-hour season premiere airs tomorrow and I can’t wait! I will be writing about all things Mad Men tomorrow, and will probably re-watch most of season 4 on Netflix all day before the premiere. I am in love with this show–I consider it to be the most consistent, well-developed series on television to date. I can’t wait to see what’s going on with my favorite characters in this new season! How many of you are as excited as I am?!

Also, I mentioned it earlier this week, but now it’s official–Dewey’s Readathon is back! Sign-ups are here! I have officially signed up to read for 24 hours on April 21st, and I hope you will too. I know my buddy Kyle at A Reader’s Pensieve is doing it, but I’m urging the rest of you to set aside the day to do it as well! And, YOU DON’T HAVE TO GO FOR THE FULL 24 HOURS! (I’m looking at you SJ) Just sign up and read for however long you can go! It’s about all of us setting aside a bit of time to read as a community. We can update our reading progress on our blogs or over on Twitter and root each other on. I enjoyed reading alongside Jillian, of A Room of One’s Own, during the last readathon–we checked in with other through the wee hours, and at the witching hour of 3:00 a.m., when you’re reading a super-creepy book like The Secret Diary of Laura Palmer, it’s really nice to know someone else is out there still reading as well.  It’s just a very cozy feeling, knowing that you’re reading alongside (virtually) with the rest of your community. Just consider it, please?!

Another bookish event on my radar is Suvudu’s Cage Match 2012 event. Basically, characters from some of the best science fiction and fantasy titles are pitted against each other in a fight to the finish. Participants for this event have included Tyrion Lannister, Zaphod Beeblebrox, The Wicked Witch, Lady Jessica, Bast, and Mr. Wednesday (to name only a few). Check out the round 3 bracket here. The event is almost over (I found out about it on Wednesday, but it’s been going on all month!), but I’m enjoying reading the recaps of the past matches. So far, Zaphod Beeblebrox, Anomander Rake, Moiraine Damodred, Kelsier, Mr. Wednesday, Granny Weatherwax, Kylar Stern, and Erevis Cale are still in it. I’m only familiar with Zaphod and Wednesday, but the cool thing about this event is that it provides me with exposure to characters whom I might want to read about in their respective sci-fi and fantasy titles. Plus, it’s just a lot of fun for fans. I recommend you all check it out!

Finally, I signed up a few weeks ago, but the event has officially started, so I’ll announce now that I am going to take part in The Sarah Addison Allen Challenge hosted by Quirky Girls Read. For those of you who don’t know who Allen is, she writes lovely magical realism novels that always take place in North Carolina and always have something to do with delicious food. When I was in a reading rut last year, I picked up a copy of Allen’s Garden Spells simply for the lovely book cover, and I was surprised to find that I loved it. Her imagery and tone is like drinking an ice-cold Arnold Palmer on a hot summer day. So, for this challenge, I will read all four of Allen’s books in April, and, on the weekend, I will cook or bake something inspired by the story I read. For example, for The Girl Who Chased the Moon, I will bake Hummingbird Cake, as that’s one of the main character’s specialties. I believe that Allen even provides a recipe on her website. It’s gonna be delicious!

This will be my last week of teaching before a month-long Spring Break. So, if I’m not consistent in posting this week, just know that I’ll be a constant presence in April! I can’t wait!


Free air conditioning--all year long!

It’s another cold, wet, blustery day here in San Diego! One of the perks of being in San Diego is that there really isn’t any reason to have a high energy bill. The weather typically is moderate, so no need for AC in the summer and no need for heat in the winter. However, on days and nights like this, with a house full of wide door jambs and such, it’s not too different from camping. You can feel the wind blowing in right through the cracks of the walls! That makes for a chilly house (but great on a hot, windy summer day)! So, I’m all bundled up in the house in my robe, scarf, long johns, wool socks and sweater. We San Diegans can be wusses about temperature changes, I know! But, it would be ridiculous to try to heat up this old, drafty house with no insulation whatsoever. So, we bundle up!

The Wise Man's Fear by Patrick Rothfuss

So, the fanfare may commence…I finished The Wise Man’s Fear relatively early (9:00 p.m.) last night! It was so good! If you missed them, I wrote readathon posts on Friday and Saturday, each with reading updates and reflection (and silly videos). Today, I will write my review (to post tomorrow) and begin reading The Waste Lands in continuance of The Dark Tower Reading Challenge (and The Stephen King project). I also need to read a classic for March still, and while I was planning on reading The Forsyte Saga for this month, it’s a hefty book and March is almost over! So, I’m going to push that off until I have a lot of free reading time (Spring Break in April or summer vacation in August). Instead, I think my classic will be A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway. My sister has urged me to read it, and the little bits I’ve skimmed while flipping through have shown it to be a very interesting book. So, I’m excited to start that up this week! I hope it counts for some of my challenges…

What else has been going on? Well, I’ve been having an internal debate on whether or not I should accept books for review. I’ve been getting approaches by authors about reading and reviewing their books, and I am skeptical to say the least. I don’t like being given something to read. It’s like someone throwing themself at you. I’m all about the chase. I want to find the perfect book for right now, and read it on my own time. Plus, I’m a horrible snob when it comes to what I read. It sounds pretentious, but I don’t read bad books. I just don’t. Or, if I do, I’m doing it on purpose. I can be in the mood for fluffy crap, but, even then, I seek it out. I seek my crap carefully. Plus, there’s the whole problem with my dislike of contemporary fiction. It’s a struggle for me to even read the Pulitzer winners for the Insatiable Booksluts’ Award-Winning Challenge, and those are award-winners!

So, after careful consideration, and the seeking out of advice from two book bloggers I greatly admire, and finally, after reading this article from the Los Angeles Review of Books, I have decided that I am not accepting books for review at this time. I will place this in my Contact page to avoid further consideration. I’ve just got too many good books of my own choosing to read, and I read enough sucky writing from my students–I don’t need to read potentially sucky books in my free time! So, if you’re looking for reviews of the newest upcoming novels, Adventures in Borkdom isn’t the place! Sorry!

Some really good news…Dewey’s Readathon is returning in April! I participated in my first Dewey back in October, and I had a blast! I read for the full 24 hours, ripped through 4.5 books, and participated in the challenges! If you’re looking for a good time, I urge you to sign up when the official linky becomes available (I’ll let you know when it does)! It could be a like a big fun sleepover, where we are all reading together and blogging and tweeting and rooting each other on! It could be so fun!!! It’ll take place April 21st, the third Saturday in April. Please, friends, set aside the date and sign up! IT COULD BE SO MUCH FUN!!!

Finally, I’ll be tuning in to tonight’s season finale of The Walking Dead! I was very happy when Shane died in the last episode (though, I wish it had been Carl who shot him. He could’ve done that when he was creeping around and saw Shane pointing a gun at his Dad. That would’ve been a huge turning point for Carl’s character! Of course, I’m assuming Carl was there to see the scene between Shane and Rick.), and I’m hoping to see some of Hershel’s red-shirt kids bite the big one tonight. And, if they’re not going to give T-Dog any sort of purpose, he could die too. If we played a drinking game where we drank everytime T-Dog appeared in an episode, we would be negative-drunk. He needs a purpose if he’s going to take up a valuable space on our survivor squad–there are too many stronger characters who could take his place! I’m crossing my fingers that one of those awesome characters will appear in tonight’s finale and set up an awesome new season in the Fall!

A rare sighting of T-Dog...

So, that’s what I’m up to. How ’bout you?


It's a chilly morning in San Diego...

So, February is just flying by! It’s the last Sunday of the month, and I thought I might write a little about what I’m up to/been up to lately.

Today:

• On the Blog– I think I might change up the theme on the blog and add some copyright info, as well as my affiliate listing disclaimer (I’m simply going to imitate what I see on some other blogs). I’ll also update my Reviews page and Challenges page so that they’re all caught up with where I am.

The Wise Man's Fear

• Reading– I am back in the world of Kvothe, fully engaged in my reading of The Wise Man’s Fear. This book has picked up right where the last one left off (Duh, Mandy, it’s book 2 in a series.) and I am enjoying being back at Kvothe’s University, watching him expertly play his lute on the stage for his adoring audience at the Eolian, and waiting to see what hijinks he’s going to get into. Right now, his nemesis has poisoned him with a drug that turns off his “inappropriate” filter–he doesn’t know what he shouldn’t say or do. Thus, he told a female friend of his that he would like nothing better than to see her with her clothes off and he had to be coaxed out of murdering another student. It’s a lot of fun to see Kvothe letting loose, even if it’s under the influence.

• Watching– Tonight, I will be watching The Walking Dead (unfortunately, no more Downton Abbey until next year). In Walking Dead news, one of the top theories about The Governor has been disproven via the announcement that The Governor has been cast. For those of you who haven’t read the graphic novels, be prepared for the introduction of one of the most interesting and disturbing bad guys to the show. He’s definitely one of my all-time favorite villains! I, along with many other internet theorists, had guessed that Darryl’s brother Merle would make his return on the show as The Governor. Apparently, Merle is dead, or up to some other mischief. Fine by me!

The Governor Walking Dead

Drive Ryan Gosling – Also, it should be noted that I watched Drive last night and loved it. The acting was perfect, the story was solid, and I need to download the soundtrack right now, as I loved the music throughout. It’s weird how I haven’t noticed the absence of a score in most movies until I watched this movie, which uses music perfectly to set the tone. I think movie directors are really forgetting what a useful tool music can be to add to the story of their films. Hitchcock knew it, and Bernard Herrman’s scores for his films always added a great deal to his films. Would the shower scene in Psycho really have hit us without Hermann’s screeching violins? I don’t think so!

• Writing– I am planning on writing at least two of my posts for this week in advance. This week you can expect to see a review of I Want My MTV and a fun post that is tentatively titled “Punk Rock and Classic Literature”.

• Other Stuff– Might as well share that I will also be grading about 60 persuasive essays and doing some laundry today as well.

Winner of A Discovery of Witches!

Yesterday was the last day to enter to win A Discovery of Witches, and a winner has been selected! With the use of a random number generator, SJ of Snobbery has been selected! I will mail out her copy of A Discovery of Witches this week! Meanwhile, a new book giveaway should be announced at some point later today. I’m thinking that it will be a signed copy of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Seth Grahame-Smith. Keep your eye out for the announcement!

2012 So Far: January and February

• Number of Books Read: 10

• Number of Reviews: 7

Mrs. Warren’s Profession

Locke & Key, vol. 1-3

The Drawing of the Three

The Gunslinger

Bleak House

Charles Dickens: A Life (not really a review, but a reflection)

A Discovery of Witches

• Number of Pages Read: 4, 226

• Favorite Book of 2012: Bleak House

• Challenges Completed: 1 (Charles Dickens Month)


Locke and Key vol. 1 by Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodriguez

Things are still a little off with me. I’m no longer in a funk, I’ve returned to the gym, and my house is finally clean, but I’m still not all there. Now, it seems, I have a bit of blogger’s block. I sit down at my computer to write a post, and nothing comes to me. What I do write feels like crap. Yesterday morning, I struggled with writing my review for Locke and Key. It’s still unfinished, and I’m not quite sure how I want to write it, as the review covers three books. I think I need to outline.

So, to deal with my writing constipation, I’ve returned to my most comfortable and favorite writing medium–good ol’ pen and paper. It does seem to help, as I’m not struggling with writing right now. I guess that I’ll keep at it until I feel like my old self again.

At least, through all of this offness, I have been reading. Maybe too many books. Perhaps my divided attention is affecting my blogging focus. But, I am reading. Here’s what I’ve finished reading, am still reading, and just started reading.

Mrs. Warren’s Profession– I finished this play by George Bernard Shaw last night, finally! I really enjoyed it, but, for some reason, was struggling with the drama format. Maybe, I’m out of practice. The themes were very interesting as the story dealt with prostitution in the Victorian era and gender inequalities. The play also featured one of my new favorite female characters–a young intellectual woman with a penchant for mathematics, working hard, and being independent. My kind of gal!

I Want My MTV– This one is taking a while because I’m always stopping my reading to watch the videos on YouTube. It’s a lot of fun, and while the commentary on various videos, musicians, VJs, and events from the ’80s is interesting, a lot of the context of this book is old news for me. I was a huge MTV fan growing up, so this is more like a walk down memory lane. I tend to skim the chapters on the MTV corporate execs though. I’m not interested in how much coke those guys snorted.

The Portable Dorothy ParkerThe Portable Dorothy Parker- This one I will be working through slowly. It is a collection of Parker’s short stories, poetry, and essays. Mainly, I read this one before bed, averaging a short story per day. I am loving her short stories! Actually, I am just loving Parker period–she just seems to be my literary soul mate. I really connect with her writing. She even provided the perfect quote for my title today, which sums up my issue with writing right now, as well as my issues with just about anything that I want to do, but can’t seem to do (I hate the gym, but I love having gone to the gym. I hate work, but I love having worked. I hate cleaning, but I love having cleaned the house. You get my drift…).

So far, I’ve read the following stories:

“The Lovely Leave”- Gah! I so related to this sad story of a woman who eagerly prepares for her husband, an officer away at war, to return home on leave. She has such high hopes for the 24 hours they get together, you just know that it won’t turn out well. Parker’s depiction of the woman’s insecurities and reactions to her husband’s life away from her are so relatable, I could easily put myself in her shoes, and I cringed often. This one really resonated with me.

Arrangement in Black and White by Dorothy Parker

Illustration by Seth

“Arrangement in Black and White”- Ugh. A very short piece following a ditzy moron of a woman at a party who is eager to meet an African American musician who is the guest of honor. She falls all over herself for being so forward-thinking by calling him “Mister” and enjoys the novelty of the moment. This story reminded me of people I knew in college- rich kids who would “slum it” in San Diego for the novelty.

The Sexes by Dorothy Parker

Illustration by Seth

“The Sexes”- A cute, short dialogue between a young woman punishing a young man suitor for paying attention to another woman at a party. Their conversation felt so true, and I know I’ve had this conversation before. Oh ladies–why are we so neurotic at times?

The History of English Literature by Perry Keenlyside and read by Derek Jacobi: I needed something to listen to in the car, so I went to the library and found this. It’s not too bad, kind of like having Derek Jacobi as your lecturer during a six-hour English Lit class. Snippets of literature are read, juxtaposed with the history behind it. I really liked listening to Chaucer read aloud- perhaps that’s how I’ll do The Canterbury Tales this year.

Also, today is Sunday, so tonight is television night! Why are all of my favorite shows on Sunday? I don’t know, but it’s good stuff.

Season Finale of Downton Abbey: What’s going to happen to Bates? Will Mary and Mathew get together? Wasn’t I asking these same questions before the finale of season 1?

Yes, and I’m so glad that the same high drama is still happening. I can’t wait to tune in, and this is why.

The Walking Dead: Finally, it seems that the living will be the bad guys on the show. Let’s face it- humans and human nature are way scarier than zombies.

Rick Grimes Graphic Novel Walking Dead

I wonder when and if Shane is going to bite the bullet. As long as he’s alive, it seems that Rick won’t get his somewhat anti-heroic status that he maintains in the graphic novels. I love the actor who plays Shane, but I want to see Rick screw up more and be more tormented by his conscience. One of the major and most important themes of the story is what this apocalyptic world forces good people to do, and Rick is at the center of this theme, and I just don’t see it happening so fully with Shane being alive. It seems that the show has split the graphic novel character of Rick in half, with his good side going to TV show Rick and his tough decision-making side going to Shane. I want Rick to shoot some humans, so that he can start really dealing with morality issues. I also want the survivor crew to move on and away from the farm. There’s a lot more going on in the outside world than simply zombies…they need to start interacting with it!

So, that’s what’s going on with me right now. This is a pretty long post, and it wasn’t too hard to write on paper. I think this long-hand drafting might work out. Now, back to the Locke and Key review…


I don’t know where my head is lately.

Yesterday was Valentine’s Day, and I really should have written this post yesterday, but I didn’t. Instead, I was fuming after getting abandoned by my ride home from work yesterday (I called my husband to pick me up after work when I found my coworker had left me behind). Then, I waited for the car dealership to call me to let me know that my car was ready for pick up. At 5:15, my husband drove me to pick it up–of course we were stuck in traffic for a while. Once we got there, I realized that I had left a pot of water boiling at home (I was in the middle of making pasta when we got the call for the car). So, Jesse had to rush home to save our old wooden house from certain conflagration. Once I got home, I was done.

So, while my mood is improved, I am definitely still insane.

But, yesterday was Valentine’s Day, and after receiving a cute text message e-card, I got into the spirit and sent a few of my own last night.

At this point, you’re maybe wondering why my husband and I didn’t do anything for Valentine’s Day. Well, even though we have significant others, a part of our singleton mentality has survived, and we have never celebrated Valentine’s Day (except for the first year we dated, except that doesn’t really count as we we simply went out on Valentine’s Day to get drunk at a local gay bar as he was upset about his car being stolen earlier in the day. He blamed the car theft on watching The Notebook. He thought he was being punished for watching The Notebook). No, Jesse and I celebrate our anniversary on Feb. 1, although we forgot this year (again, where is my head these days?).

But, anyways, the point of this post was to share the awesome TV show-related e-cards I texted out last night. So, here they are!

So, I received, from my good friend Leigh, this card:

Leigh, is my number one Lost buddy, so this was awesome. She is also my number one Game of Thrones buddy, so I sent her this one in reply:

 After this, I got into the spirit, and sent my family some e-cards:

For my Mad Men-loving sister:

And my Breaking Bad-loving Dad:

And my Walking Dead-loving husband:

And for myself, I sent (not really sent, but saved) this, for my Downton Abbey-loving self:

So, Valentine’s Day is just one day that the world says is designated for love. That’s lame. If you care about someone, you should tell them any and every day! Why not send them one of these lovely e-cards?