July 12, 2003

Skating to The Border and Back

I urge you to take advantage of that coupon from Borders which I mentioned yesterday, If you have books you want to buy. It's good at Waldenbooks, too, but if you use it at Borders the sale prices apply to discounted items as well as regularly priced items. So the deal is better at Borders.

I ended up buying:

All the above (except for the pocket reference) were already 30% off publisher list price. In addition, Mattie got a book she could read, and we picked up The Bad Beginning: Book the First by Lemony Snicket for Kit (OK -- and for me).

I love the description on the book itself:

Dear Reader,

I'm sorry to say that the book you are holding in your hands is extremely unpleasant. It tells an unhappy tale about three very unlucky children. Even though they are charming and clever, the Baudelaire siblings lead lives filled with misery and woe. From the very first page of this book when the children are at the beach and receive terrible news, continuing on through the entire story, disaster lurks at their heels. One might say they are magnets for misfortune.

In this short book alone, the three youngsters encounter a greedy and repulsive villain, itchy clothing, a disastrous fire, a plot to steal their fortune, and cold porridge for breakfast.

It is my sad duty to write down these unpleasant tales, but there is nothing stopping you from putting this book down at once and reading something happy, if you prefer that sort of thing.

With all due respect,
Lemony Snicket

I saved quite a bit of money. Spent some too. Now I have some reading to do.

I debated over buying a greek philosophy book. I'd like to spend some time studying more philosophy, to get a better grounding. However, I'm afraid my life is paced in such a way that time for reflection has been marginalized. Technical books help with my programming, career-advancing and WWW-based hobby. As for slightly more recreational books, my pile of those is already too high. Both fiction and nonfiction lists are getting long and I'm just not devoting the time I used to to reading. The books are fascinating, but I just don't find myself in the same quiet situations were I can curl up and read. At 1 in the morning, somehow I can work on the computer or watch a DVD, but sit down with a book and I'm asleep in 10 minutes.

Here's a partial list of the great books I have either begun to read already, or are waiting to be begun as soon as I finish others:
Mindfulness In Plain English (Venerable Henepola Gunaratana), Bad News (Donald Westlake), Put A Lid On It (also by Westlake), Shadow Puppets (last in the Ender's Game series) A bunch of Peter David Star Trek novels that are plain fun, a couple of books lent by friends, The Animator's Survival Kit (an excellent guide to animating figures!), The Borderlands of Science: Where Sense Meets Nonsense (Michael Shermer), Hold 'Em For Advanced Players (Sklansky)... and that's just a few of the titles in my backlog.

While shopping for books today, I had Kit looking for the JavaScript Pocket Reference. She recommended the "For Dummies" JavaScript book. I told her I was already enough of a dummy. "Maybe you'd rather have the one for Idiots, then." she suggested.

I think it was a decent day for the girls. We took them skating. I alternately dragged poor Kit around the rink and Mattie. Mattie's so light that when she fell I was able to keep her more or less on her feet by holding on to her hand tightly. Kit didn't tend to fall, but caught on early that she didn't have to move her legs much if she let Dad do all the work. It was a lot of fun until my feet got seriously tired.

"Bugs!" -- the IMAX movie, was a treat. Amazing, seeing these insects eat up close and personal.

Julie came over and we had Cambodian food. I think it was Cambodian. Some of it may have been Vietnamese. I'm not experienced enough to know the difference. Afterward we got a live performance of a play written, produced, and acted by our girls. Then "The Royal Tenenbaums" The bizarre humor of this film made it enjoyable. The "pro" recommendations I got on this film were right. I did have a couple of folks tell me they did not like this film, and I figure it was just because it hit them wrong. You have to appreciate the comedy that falls out naturally from a dysfunctional family story.

ZZZZzzzz -- time to catch some shut-eye.

Posted by James at July 12, 2003 2:22 AM
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Maggie's was Cambodian. Ours was Vietnamese. (It says on the menu, I think.)

I could have saved $30 if I had ordered from Amazon instead of going to Borders. The moral of the story is not to buy DVDs at Borders. The sad thing is, I already knew that. But I was intoxicated by the atmosphere.

I could have loaned you "Mindfulness in Plain English." I think I still have it. I'd have to find it though.

I may still have Lemony Snicket's "The Miserable Mill." I wouldn't have sold it, but I might have given it to one of my cousins' kids. It featured a spanking machine.

Posted by: julie at July 14, 2003 7:27 PM

I've enjoyed a few Lemony Snicket books. I like the snideness (I know this comes as a great surprise).

Posted by: Patti M. at July 16, 2003 10:54 AM

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