Archive for July, 2007

You know how you can go for a long spell with your head wrapped up in other things and you forget simple pleasures?  And then, all of a sudden a once-loved thing gets up in your face and you’re reminded of just what you loved about that thing and about yourself and about life?


I just heard Van Morrison’s “Days Like This”…and I have to say that I stand by my original belief that Van Morrison is everything that is right about music.

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On my visit to Indiana, my parents treated me to a night of regional community theatre. Now, I love theatre and once hoped to make a living at it. Then I realised I didn’t want that life, so now I just content myself with going to plays and jealously critiquing the performances. There’s nothing quite like an evening of “I could do that SO much better”, coupled with chocolate and softdrinks.

But I’m not here to discuss the play. I’m here to discuss the people behind us–the peanut gallery.

This was a small town theatre in the heart of Indiana, and the contingent from my little family seemed to be the only people that didn’t know absolutely everyone else in the room. I told my mother and sister afterward that I felt as though I’d fallen into a Shirley Jackson story and was afraid we’d all be tied up in a wicker man or something. At several points throughout the evening I felt like we’d walked into a heartland version of Twin Peaks. It’s not that the town and theatre weren’t nice–they were lovely. It’s just somewhat discomfiting to find yourselves in a crowd where everyone else seems to know everything about everybody else who walks in the door.

The row of people behind us were no different, and their main topic of conversation seemed to be the departure of the teenagers behind us for various branches of Indiana University. The boy was going to Indiana-Purdue Fort Wayne (IPFW to those in the know) to major in “er, computers” for “I dunno”. His girlfriend was going to IU-Bloomington to major in Theatre, even though she had recently fallen in love with Fashion Design–so much so that she bought a dress form! (The dress form was big news. Me, personally, I’m creeped out by dress-forms. They’re sort of like the Venus De Milo of Ventriloquist dummies.)

We heard all about how they were going to allow their relationship to be open, since they were going to be so far apart. (It’s like a 2.5 hour drive…) But the part that got me right between the eyes was when Ms. Dress Form began to talk about her roommate.

I don’t know who it is. My mom said I’ll probably get stuck with some fat twerp. Which would be bad, because I run every morning.

Now, pardon me, but that whole sentence struck me as about the equivalent of saying “I’ll probably get stuck with some n—-r. Which would be bad because I don’t eat watermelon.” Or “I’ll probably get stuck with some f–, which would be bad because I don’t like Barbra Streisand.” I’m fat, but I’m only occasionally twerpy (I can give you the list of days each month which are forecast for “heavily twerpy”) and I work out almost every day. So Dress-Form clearly has a pile of prejudice that perhaps college will help educate out of her.

The funniest part? The woman she was talking to was fatter than I am.

Maybe what Aunt B says about IU students is more true than I realised…

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I just wrote a five paragraph post that made me sound insane. I was going for “thoughtful and introspective” but came away with “should be institutionalised,” so pardon me if I leave that thought for another day.

It’s been hard for me to write anything good for the past week. (Points to all of you who said to yourselves “past week? Woman, you could NEVER write anything good!”) Between spending a week with my mom and dad and sister, having a major family reunion and of course the whole Potter Drama, I feel washed over by a tide of stimuli. Normally when I write a blog post I can take one thought and turn it over in my hands like a slip of paper from a fortune cookie. It’s a nice, calming meditative exercise.

But after the last week I feel like the slippy fortune-cookie thoughts have been snatched from my brain and replaced by an encyclopaedia. It’s kind of weird. And it also means I can’t hammer out a decent blogpost that doesn’t make me look half-nuts. Witness this one here.

And now I’m off to write another post, because I just remembered the idea I had while falling asleep last night. See–all those writing workshop nutbars are right. It’s a good idea to have a pen and paper by your bedside to capture those errant thoughts and vivid dreams. Unfortunately I’ve never done this because I cannot master the art of writing in the dark.

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This woman is ruining my planned hat-comeback.

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These aren’t ALL Potter-related, but some are…so here’s the MORE tag to spare you any spoilers, gang.


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How Could I Forget?!

Short Harry Potter Spoiler Post


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It Is Finished


The forthcoming post will be about the last Harry Potter book, and my reactions to the initial read through.  This is a spoiler-filled post.  Do NOT click on the “More” link if you do not wish to be spoiled.  I will also add spoiler space after the “More” link for those of you who see my blog in a feedreader. 

So….let’s talk Potter… (more…)

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I’m sitting here in my nightgown sponging keystrokes into my sister’s laptop–seriously, I need klackity keys–and I can hardly contain my joy.

We’re just 7 hours away from The Book Release, and I’m frabjously excited.

I know some things about the book.  But it’s just enough to not be anxious about the content.   This has been a fun journey for the last 7 years, and I think that tonight will be a bittersweet finale.  I’m somewhat sad that all is coming to an end, but I’m delighted with all the friends I’ve made, conversations I’ve had and happy memories I’ve been able to store.

Accio Midnight!

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Dear Members Of Harry Potter For Grownups Yahoo Discussion Group:

I realise that many of you don’t want to read spoilers about the new book.  I understand that.  But guess what?  For the last 18 months I haven’t wanted to read your  theories about how Harry Potter=Jesus, how Ron and Buckbeak will get married, how Snape is a Vampire and how no one in your 9th grade class thinks you’re very cool.  Yet not surprisingly, these fascinating (?) emails filled my inbox by the HUNDREDS on a daily basis.  I’ve become very practiced at my use of the “delete” key whenever presented with 99.9% of the messages with a [HPfGU] tag.

I hope you all realise that the reason people are spoiling this group in droves, and spoiling you individually, is because you are all acting like whiny four-year-olds about it.   I’m thinking of calling the whaaambulance on the lot of you.

Yes, I wanted to be spoiled.  Yes, I understood the list has a no-spoilers policy.  Yes, I happily went elsewhere for my spoilers.

But frankly, the list has been nothing but talk about how your widdle feewings are hurt by spoilers.

Here’s a hint:  step a way from the Harry Potter news.  Full stop.   We all knew the spoiler trolls were going to be out in full force right about now.  Why?  Because the very excellent threat wielded for the past decade by Bloomsbury/Scholastic is now empty.   For the last two book releases, the publishers issued an ironclad edict that said any firm leaking the books wouldn’t be able to sell the future novels in the series.   That’s the equivalent of levying a multi-million dollar fine.   But now–who cares?  There are no more forthcoming chapters in the saga with which to blackmail booksellers.   And there are more than a few bookstore grunts who are irked by the extra security measures and the fact that they have to work until 4:00am on Saturday morning.

Who is surprised that they’re leaking this book–getting one big shot in at The Man?  Not me.

But I’m sick and tired of hearing you all whine about it.   I’ve got several readers who aren’t even reading my blog until August.  They’ve stepped away from the conversation.  I suggest you all do the same.  You can’t control everyone else, so if you don’t want to hear what’s being said–leave.   Or do as I do and master your use of “delete” or learn to killfile.

I joined this discussion group to talk about the literary construct of the Harry Potter books.   I haven’t wanted to read your little “filk” poems about how bad Snape is set to the tune of “Yellow Rose Of Texas”.   I haven’t much cared about most of the topics here.  Yet I’ve shut up–until today.

I find it hysterical that none of you realise you’ve made yourselves a target for spoilers by reacting so strongly against them.

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The Oddest Week of My Life continues.

Potter spoilers are piling up fast and furious.  I’ve talked to more than one person who has read the entire online copy; I’ve had more spoilers than I asked for.   I don’t care.  I’m still eager to hold that last copy in my hands, and to sink into the experience of finally–after seven years’ waiting–READ it.

I ate lunch yesterday at Atz’ Soda Shop.

When I was in high school I was in many plays.   Because we were a small school, those plays were held in the larger auditorium of Concordia Lutheran High School.   I spent many a night hanging out late at Concordia for dress rehearsals, tech rehearsals, prop set-up, stage set-up and just plain teenagerisms.   The Atz down the street was open late, and would often feed us suppers.  I flirted with guys I liked, laughed and joked.   Eating at Atz’ yesterday was a trip down memory lane.  I loved it.

I’m in a weird place because so much of what is happening this week begs to be written down, but I don’t have the silence of mind to get it all in a neat, digestible form.   I certainly don’t have the discipline right now to make it all entertaining.

Our plans have changed slightly with regard to the Harry Potter Party.  It turns out that the Allen Co. Public Library is hosting its own party, and will have books for sale from the BookMark–an independent bookseller.   That’s the party we’ll be at.  After covering all the parties for Music City Bloggers, I realised that the Chain stores are having Chain parties.  I assume that they’ll be fun, but still feel slightly “canned”–sort of like Vacation Bible School.

I imagine that every store in the chain will get a “Harry Potter Release Party Kit” from the Home Office In New York City.  While the Accidental Tourist vibe may be okay for some, I’d just as soon go to the party hosted by people who have to use their own ingenuity and put their own twist on things just for love of the books.   Besides which, the party is at the LIBRARY.   The library.  My secular church.  So, yeah.  I’m getting quite excited.

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