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Greetings from the university of Campbell! Dorm life agrees with me quite well, I must say.

Tess of the D’urbervilles turned out to be rather sad but not in a well-done way. Glad I read it once but I certainly won’t bother again. I am not making a brave foray into Ulysses by James Joyce. Apparently up until a few years ago, that book held the record for the longest sentence in English, although I’m not certain of its grammatical correctness. With any luck, I won’t die reading it!

I want to go to school in a cave… except maybe not.
The Hunger Site. It kills me that all the ads cater to affluent, consumeristic Americans, though.
My brother loves his Mac.
The newly-released poster for The Happening, M. Night Shyamalan’s upcoming movie.

Some of my photography adventures from the break:
Bullseye – I know, it’s a dumb picture, but I can’t help but want to immortalize those when they finally happen.
Faith is imprisoned.
Faith and fountain.
Matthew is eaten by a tree!
Sad daisy, concerned tomato.
Sly carrot…
Angry vegetables and flowers.
The road where I go running at sunset.
Sunlit grass.
More of the same.
Sunsets are lovely. They even manage to make wire fences look nice.

Hmm, dinner…

It’s feeling the slightest bit winterish, at last! About bloody time, it’s January…

Did you know pulchritudinous means beautiful? Now you do. You can only use it to refer to people, though. So there’s no such thing as a pulchritudinous sunset.

I was at the country club and I was working on something with my back to the reception area when I heard a grumbly, older member of the club talking to a woman with him as he walked. This is the part I overheard: “I told him, but did he listen? He went out and got a staph infection and died. Nice hair.” I turned around at the last part (is that bad I assumed he had to be talking about me?), but he kept right on walking without pausing so I didn’t even see him. The woman who was with him poked her head around the corner and said, “Oh yes, very nice.” and then kept going as well. People there are so crazy.

The other day we went through our wall of bookshelves and were ruthless with the old homeschooling books. We threw out a lot, we’re giving away a lot, and…we’re keeping a lot. But, in the process, I came across my old Creative Writing book from when I was 11! Mostly it’s all incredibly pompous and pretentious. I read waaaay too much. May I present for your amusement “Pictures in the Clouds,” one of my assignments:

What do you see in the clouds today? I see a huge grizzly bear, towering over the seagulls.
I see a roaring lion, the king of all he sees.
To me they look like they are in a forest in the clouds, these two monarchs of the wilderness, where political campaigning is unheard of.
The bear rears up on his hind legs, as though saying goodbye to the setting sun until another day.
The lion, too, roars one last farewell before he fades out of view with the last of the light.
Until tomorrow, then, to these two great kings.

Well, at least my punctuation was good. Actually, there was some decent stuff here and there in the book. One of the assignments was to make creative comparisons, and here are a few of my better ones:
the wind – a highway that carries thoughts and dreams
thunder – cymbals in a huge orchestra
a rainbow – wildflowers in the sky
a spider’s web – the moon’s fishing net
an echo – the remains of a song

I’m rather proud of the spider’s web one. I may have to use that one day.

Some great links!
A really great German photography site. My German is rather rusty, but I found a lot of good things under Galerie. Just be careful in the Menschen category – some of the “people” photographs are rather awful. Also, stay very far away from anything under Akt, for obvious (well, obvious if you have a German-English dictionary!) reasons. But they have amazing photographs, especially under Natur.
Beirut, one of my new favorite music groups, has great music videos. Click on the first picture to see Nantes, it’s lovely.
Heart It Races, a really great song by Architecture in Helsinki. I found this and it led me to look for more videos directed by this Vincent Moon guy. Turns out they did a huge project with all kinds of indie artists called Take Away Shows. They’re ALL amazing, and you can find them here. Most of them are done in random places in Paris, and they’re utterly beautiful. I especially recommend Arcade Fire’s song played in an elevator and Beirut’s song in some little cafe.
It’s been a great week for music!

I did my yearly book roundup as well. I read 90 books this year, if you count individual plays. Without which it’s only 70ish…I read a LOT of plays this year, mainly due to Shakespeare and Theatre History classes, but also for fun. Overall, not too shabby, and I found a lot of new favorites this year. Right now I’m working on Tess of the D’Urbervilles, which is so far uninspiring, but we shall see.

Speaking of books, if you don’t care about spoilers, and you’ve been on pins and needles all this time to find out just what *are* the Mysteries of Udolpho, you may click here and all will be revealed!

You seem to have stumbled upon a storytelling of ravens. Watch for falling collective nouns; you may find a wing of dragons or a charm of hummingbirds caught in your hair. Hardhats are recommended.

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Stephanie Ricker's book recommendations, liked quotes, book clubs, book trivia, book lists (read shelf)

A Storytelling