Sunday Salon: The Smoke Gets in Your Eyes Edition

It’s been a very strange week. I woke Monday morning to the news that highway 37, my usual route to work, was completely closed due to a fire. That was the first I’d heard of it. My reclusive neighbor, who rarely leaves his house, soon showed up at the front door to make sure I knew what was going on, complaining about the smoke and … Continue reading Sunday Salon: The Smoke Gets in Your Eyes Edition

Sunday Salon: Why the Booker Short List Ruins my Reading and Other Bookish Items

I’m one of those people who get excited over the Man Booker Prize.  Almost every year, once the long list is announced, I head over the my local library to get as many of the nominated books as I can.  Typically, there are a few not yet available in America, and there are a couple my library doesn’t have yet. So I check out two … Continue reading Sunday Salon: Why the Booker Short List Ruins my Reading and Other Bookish Items

Sunday Salon: Elizabeth Bishop vs. Frank O’Hara and Several Other Projects I’m Rambling Through

I’ve got a couple of daily reading projects going on lately. I’m working my way through Laozi’s Dao di Jing for the second time. Laozi was a philosopher who lived in China about the time of Confucious.  According to legend, Laozi was asked to write his philosophy down by a border gaurd who insisted on it as payment for allowing him to leave China. The … Continue reading Sunday Salon: Elizabeth Bishop vs. Frank O’Hara and Several Other Projects I’m Rambling Through

Jane Austen Read All A-long Book Two. Did YOU P&P?

This has been a big month for Jane Austen fans, Austen in August and all.  It was month two/book two for the Jane Austen Read All A-long.  I finished Pride and Prejucdice earlier this week–loved it again.  I think of the six books, this is the one I will be keeping around to reread in retirement. I could have nearly called this a Re-read All A-Long … Continue reading Jane Austen Read All A-long Book Two. Did YOU P&P?

Jane Austen Read A-Long: Pride and Prejudice

How is everyone doing so far? I should be completing Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice late this evening or tomorrow night.  My reading time has been limited this week by the start of school.  As the old prostitute said, it’s not the work, it’s the commute.  Mine was made worse when the district I work for decided to start school later. Something about improved learning for high … Continue reading Jane Austen Read A-Long: Pride and Prejudice

Making Books with Jane Austen

I spent this past week, the last of my summer vacation, at the Center for the Book in San Francisco  taking a four-course intensive book binding class.  We learned how to make the four bindings shown in the picture here; Coptic, flat-back case, limp paper and rounded back case. I’ve been making my own books for many years now, following the directions in various how-to … Continue reading Making Books with Jane Austen

Jane Austen Read All A-long Book Two (Pride and Prejudice) and Man Booker Longlist Reading

I’m taking a break from my recent stint of Man-Booker Prize Long List books to read Jane Austen’s second published novel Pride and Prejudice for the Jane Austen Read All A-long. You can still sign up for the remaining five books here.  I will get to the famous openng sentence later today. I’ll be reading Pride and Prejudice on the ferry boat this week as I go back … Continue reading Jane Austen Read All A-long Book Two (Pride and Prejudice) and Man Booker Longlist Reading

Sunday Ramble: Various Books, Various Destinations, and Jane Austen

My new reading glasses finally arrived this week.  I’m still getting used to them; my old pair broke several months ago so I’ve been leaning my head way back while wearing my progressives for some time now. It’s still a bit odd to be reading with my held held upright. If you don’t know what I mean you’re probably under 50.  One day you’ll understand. … Continue reading Sunday Ramble: Various Books, Various Destinations, and Jane Austen

Sunday Ramble: Columbus, Jane Austen and New Favorite Books

C.J. and I went out for breakfast in Benicia this morning, which we usually do on Sundays whether I’m on summer break or not.  Afterwards, we wondered round Charlie’s Attic where we found this cool pop-up book about Columbus.  It’s from 1960, so I won’t bother reading the text. I bought it for the pop-up anyway.  I know all about Columbus. The cover features a … Continue reading Sunday Ramble: Columbus, Jane Austen and New Favorite Books

Sunday Ramble: What to Read, What to Read, What to Read….

We still looking for the next ‘School Wide Read’, though the children have gone home for the summer.  We have two titles under consideration at the moment: The Boy who Harnessed the Wind by Bryan Mealer and William Kamkwamba and The Revealers by Doug Wilhelm. In addition, I have this small stack of contenders I didn’t get around to pictured here and about nine more titles waiting for me … Continue reading Sunday Ramble: What to Read, What to Read, What to Read….

Looking for the Next School Wide Read

Finding a book suitable for grades six, seven and eight is not easy. The difference between a seventh grader and an eighth grader is dramatic, but the difference between a sixth and an eighth grader is stunning. This year we did our first school wide read, Chew on This by Charles Wilson and Eric Schlosser, based on Mr. Schlosser’s best-selling book Fast Food Nation.  Each subject area read several … Continue reading Looking for the Next School Wide Read

Sunday Ramble: Travels, Art and Jane Austen Challenge

C.J. and I visited Los Angeles this past week to see the James Kerry Marshall retrospective at the Museum of Contemporary Art, the same show we saw last summer in Chicago.  We’ve become big fans of Mr. Marshall’s work. It was a mad-cap three-day trip–drive down, day in L.A. and drive home–but we managed to visit three bookstores while we were there.  We stayed in … Continue reading Sunday Ramble: Travels, Art and Jane Austen Challenge