Wednesday, September 12, 2007
Helter Skelter - the stepping stones of my mind (tales of a scattershot reader)
Today's post will be scattershot, if not quite desultory,reflecting my mind and getting in those GRE vocab words. A sultry day yesterday, with a couple of tremendous downpours. It made everything damp - my shoes, my shirt - so I was slightly chilled every time I went inside somewhere airconditioned - my brain, my personality... damp, damp, damp. After two mind-numbing hours yesterday on the difference between developmental scores and standard scores on psychological tests, two reading a couple of studies on how we recognize objects when we can't see them completely, and another two analyzing data on a study about factors influencing learning and performance, I was hoping some leisurely reading time was in the cards. No such luck. First I flitted about on line - visited Matt and Siew, both back from their vacations, dropped in on Lotus reads who had a great post on a new book about alexia which is all over the sphere, and finally I headed over to my friend Sheila who was raving about the likelihood of coming down with Capgras syndrome spontaneously by thinking about it too much - I totally understand! Because, although you resemble my usual reader you are clearly a cleverly constructed copy sent here by the French government. We then shared a rave on a wonderfully fun book called The Man Who Turned into Himself by David Ambrose. All I can say is read it - it is sci fi, quantum physics, and a love story - that makes it sound complex which it's not - it's an easy read, not brilliant. But without giving too much away, it's about a man who needs denial really badly, so he enters an alternate reality. It's the kind of book that twists my brain into a little pretzel. Then I wanted to hunker down with some happy analogue reading - you know the kind with pages, the kind for which you have to knock down a few trees. I jumped from Didion to Laurie King (see current reading on the side bar) - and they weren't doing it for me. So I picked up The Welsh Girl which I read about over at Dovegreyreader Scribbles. I believe it was nominated for the Booker Prize, I don't know if it got any further, I just can get myself to care about awards. Anyway, I don't like reading multiple books at a time - some of you impress me no end with your ability to frolic from flower-to-flower, keeping track of multiple plots, characters and impressions. But each book is its own world to me, and I want to be in that world until I'm out. I'm a one-book kind of guy. Not so this week. I've become an adulterous reader. I've only just started but already I'm hooked. The time: 1944; the place: Wales; the situation: a young British officer is brought to interrogate Rudolph Hess. That's all I got before falling asleep as the humidity finally broke.