Thursday, March 05, 2009

Saved by snow

I want to thank everyone for their kind comments to my last entry. It has been tough lately, but, as you all said, something will turn up. Then we had one of those magical snowstorms, the kind that creates a holiday for everybody. The snowstorm didn't get me a nursing job, but it did give me two extra days to sleep in.

As the snow started falling Sunday night, I met Jon after work for a beer with some of our friends. Someone had the idea that we ought to go sledding. We have a sledding hill at our house. It's more of a bunny hill, but it provides a modicum of enjoyment, so everybody came to our house and we and our friends and our kids all played in the snow, migrating to the park across the street for a midnight snowball fight. I was taking a risk, since I had to get up at 4:30 for clinicals on Monday, but I counted on clinicals being canceled, and they were. Now I have survived another week of school, and next week is spring break. After that there will be a long, weary haul.

I read a lot, as you all know. For the past four years, at least, I've been reading from a list that I created for myself from Nancy Pearl's book Booklust. I've stuck pretty doggedly to the list, but have added books to it. In case you're unfamiliar with Booklust, it lists books under a wide variety of creative categories. Some categories are about specific subjects like "World War II fiction," others highlight specific authors: "Connie Willis, too good to miss." There's a "First novels" category, and one devoted to authors who graduated from the University of Iowa's creative writing program.

I am now getting close to the end of this list. I have dipped into the last category, World War II fiction. Indeed, it looks like finishing my Booklust list and graduating from nursing school may happen simultaneously. Or very close together, anyway. This is incredible when you consider that I started the list more than four years ago, before I even knew I'd be going to nursing school.

I had been reading From Here to Eternity by James Jones (WWII Fiction) but after 420 pages I was still waiting for it to be rewarding and I gave up. (I never committed to finishing every single book on the list.) I'm also reading The League of Frightened Men by Rex Stout (Rex Stout: Too good to miss). Like most mystery writers, Rex Stout created a detective character to star in all his novels, and his is the fabulous beer-drinking, orchid-loving, never-wrong, almost-too-fat-to-get-out-of-a-chair, Nero Wolfe. The books are told from the perspective of Archie Goodwin, Wolfe's right-hand man. The Nero Wolfe books were first published in the 1930s, and Archie Goodwin is what the Three Stooges would have called a "wise guy." He employs a colorful phrase for the simplest communications. The books are very, very dated, but still fun.

The other categories I'm reading from right now are "Texas," "Gore Vidal's historical novels," "What a (natural) disaster," "Connie Willis: Too Good to Miss," "Women's friendships," and "World War I fiction."

Now I need to learn to speak Italian. Today I had the brilliant idea to rent every single Italian-language movie at Sneak Reviews, C'ville's best movie rental store. Come to think of it, the only Italian I know comes from A Room with a View, one of my all-time favorite movies. I've been listening to an Italian language CD in my car. I'm trying to learn to get the accent correct before I start worrying about the meaning of what I'm saying. I have to spend spring break working on projects for school, but there should be time for a few films.

1 comment:

  1. Ah, BookLust and Nancy Pearl. Two of my favorite things in one sentence. Let's add coffee and chocolate and I'm in heaven:)