That whole Thanksgiving deal is pretty wonderful. I had a fantastic four days of bliss. Even the plane rides were entertaining! I had a lovely chat with some guy who is a competitive water skiier. The first thing I did when I got home was sweep the roof. The roof didn’t particularly need sweeping, and of all the things I missed about home, that was not even on the list, but…there you go. I spent lots of time with the family (on Thanksgiving day we took a load of brush to the dump…very typical), consumed astounding amounts of pie, and on Saturday I was reunited with my CU crew, which was utterly splendid! I missed all of them so very much. The weather was deliciously cool, and I slept with my window open every night (it was in the 30s, perfect for sleeping) and wore long-sleeved shirts and did not melt.

The links today are mainly swiped from other friends, but since they do it to me all the time, I don’t feel the least bit guilty. Not a bit, do you hear?
Papyrus: don’t let it happen to you or your loved ones. Stolen from Sarah.
“Famous Last Words” by Deerhunter, also stolen from Sarah. But I liked the band first, darn it.
“My Girls” by Animal Collective, stolen from Graham.
Cell phones make us all dumb, guys.
Jumprope skillz. I am slightly embarrassed to admit that I stole this one from my parents. However, it’s still quite cool.

Then I read some things.
I am *this* close to finishing Anna Karenina. She’s already pitched herself under the train (and wow, I was ready for that 100 pages ago), but somehow there are still 40-odd pages left for me to polish off tomorrow during lunch. I try and I try, but I just don’t love Tolstoy. I tried, Leo! Nothing personal, you understand.

Since my copy of Karenina is a massive hardcover, I thought I’d bring something lighter (both literally and metaphorically) on the plane. A friend recommended some author called J.A. Jance, and I’d never heard of them, so I grabbed a random one off the shelf at the library. Apparently she’s actually really famous, I just read more of the classics than I do the contemporary popular stuff, so I didn’t know. But anyway, it was incredibly tedious, dull, and trite, with poorly-written characters and an even more dismal plot. I occasionally forget how absolutely fed-up I am with the vast majority of popular literature, but I have been forcefully reminded.

Then I read The Lord of the Flies by William Golding, which I had somehow managed never to get around to reading. Wow, was that a breath of fresh air (even if, y’know, it’s about the degeneracy of mankind) by comparison. I LOVE good books. I love deeply thought-provoking books that actually say something of value, something worth remembering past closing the cover. An hour after finishing a formulaic genre piece like Jance, you’ve already forgotten the characters, and the plot stays with you even less time. They’re all fluff, nothing there to chew on. It irks me greatly that such things are even published, and I’m rather enraged when I actually spend valuable time, which I could spend reading things I love, on them instead. I know, I should just quit reading it then, but I always have to finish a book, I can’t help myself!

Next up: Atlas Shrugged, I believe. I’ve been meaning to read it for years, and I know it’ll be something worth sinking my teeth into. (Why do I always use food analogies with books?)

Oh, hang on to your hats, you will not believe this. I was reading some old papers and things that my mom had dug out regarding her family and whatnot. Somehow on my French-Canadian grandmother’s side I’m related to this chap named Etienne Brule. Turns out that Etienne was a scout and explorer for the famous Samuel de Champlain during the 1600s, which I’d heard before. Also turns out that Etienne was the first European to see Lake Huron, Lake Ontario, the future site of Toronto, and the Detroit River, among other things, which I had not heard before. Etienne was quite the character, living with various Indian tribes and purportedly having flings with various women in said tribes. BUT. The most colorful part of the story is the tale of Etienne’s demise. (You might want to sit down for this.) Etienne somehow made his friends the Huron Indians angry, so they boiled him and ate him.

I am perfectly serious. How fascinating is that? There’s cannibalism in my family history!

…I should probably not be so thrilled. 😀