Friday Favorites

Idea stolen from Laura, who has too many blogs for her own good. Just another thing to help me post a little more frequently.

Doing what she does best . . .

This week one of my favorites has to be my friends Catherine & Sean. They were watching Escape Cat, shown here in fine form, while I was away last week. Naturally, as soon as I left she busted out of the building. . . and luckily was rescued by a neighbor who recognized her. Catherine & Sean came by to check on her and instead found a note about where they could find her, and they went and got her back. We won’t talk about her behavior for the rest of the week. Let’s just say she’s going to be boarded the next time I go out of town.

Another favorite? That I am DONE with Anna Karenina, which was the pick for book club this Sunday. This was actually a re-read for me, and now I sort of get why I really didn’t remember anything about it. I probably wasn’t paying attention for most of it. I was mentally done with it about halfway through, soldiered on, took a break and read two other books, and then came back and finally managed to finish it off. Serially written works are not all they are cracked up to be for the modern reader.

We’ll end on a more positive note, with the tiny and impromptu gathering that some friends had at their house on Monday. They’ve got a pool, and the weather was perfect for it. We floated around, drank a little beer, ate a little pizza, and had a fun time. I think I managed to forget to get sunscreen on my chest, and so I now have a very dramatic, plunging (and faint) tan line from those couple of hours. But my red & white polka dot bathing suit is super cute!

Back to your regularly scheduled Seattle trip updates tomorrow!

What's interesting today

American Libraries: Sacramento Public Library unveils award-winning National Library Week campaign
This is totally rad. They got a grant to work on the campaign, which is focused on outreach to the LGBT community. They partnered with some community groups – including Sac City Roller Derby – and got design work from LGBT designers. But what I love most of all about this campaign is the joy that the photos capture. The library is a place where you can come to find whatever it is makes you happy, and we don’t care how you identify yourself. In fact, we consider it none of our business, much like it is none of anyone’s business what you read, unless you choose to tell them.

The Telegraph: Birth of a Book: A tour of Smith Settle’s handmade bookbinding process
If you have two minutes, you have enough time to watch this lovely video about the creation of a special-edition book. For all that we talk about digital these days, I do believe that there is still a place for books like these, which are little works of art.

The Atlantic: The Missing 20th Century: How Copyright Protection Makes Books Vanish
Very interesting chart that shows that right now on Amazon, there are twice as many books published in the 1850s for sale as there are from the 1950s. You can really see the impact of copyright protections here, for better or worse.

North Baltimore Patch: Archdiocese Unhappy About Good Friday Baseball
I’m sorry, but baseball is secular. Since when does the church get to call the shots here?

Harpoon Brewery: Rich & Dan’s Rye IPA
One of the 100 Barrel Series brews from last year is being added to the year-round rotation this month! This was developed by the brewery’s cofounders as a celebration of Harpoon’s 25th anniversary, and it was so popular that they decided to keep it around. Looking forward to trying this one.

2011

The last few days I’ve felt compelled to do some kind of 2011 wrap-up post, but at the same time I didn’t want it to be a long, rambly rehash. I started off with a few random statistics, and then I saw a couple of people post list-style updates. Seemed like a good idea. So, without further ado:

Bouts Officiated: 21 (5 expos, 8 regulation, 7 sanctioned, and one Men’s Roller Derby Association bout)

Zipcar Rentals: 11

Trips to Target: 11 (5 of which were in the last two months of the year, oy)

Amazon.com Orders: 28

Foursquare Badges Unlocked or Leveled Up: 22

Dailymile Workouts: 76

Albums Purchased: 14, plus a few stray singles

Continue reading

The Nutcracker

As some of you may have already seen, Danielle and I went to see the Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker today at the Lyric. It’d been a very, very long time since I’d seen this, and I really enjoyed it. The strength, agility and grace of the dancers just astounded me. The costumes were beautiful, and of course there was a corps of kids from a local ballet school involved in the performance. There’s another show on Sunday at 1pm, so if you’re interested, check it out. Our matinee today was not sold out, so I imagine there are probably some seats available at tomorrow’s show.

What really stood out for me, as I imagine is the case for many people, were the dancers who performed the Arabian Dance. They’re a duo who are trained in acrobatics as well as ballet, and they did amazing things that just looked like no big deal. Here’s their performance from The Nutcracker today, enjoy!

What's interesting today

Simmons GSLIS InfoLink: How to Get the Most Out of Library School
Oh look, an article I was interviewed for this summer is out. And not only am I the lead interviewee but the featured photo on the InfoLink homepage. Woah.

Wired.com Epicenter: Amazon’s Kindle Gets a Library Card
Kindle users can now borrow e-books from libraries that use Overdrive (the system most libraries use to lend e-books). Kindle users, please go check it out. Sounds like they have done a nice job integrating the Kindle features you’re used to.

The Chronicle: Women’s Colleges Try New Strategies for Success
Interesting for those of us who’ve been affiliated with a women’s college.

Looking forward to 2010

Based on the 2009 recap you can probably guess what some of my 2010 goals are without even reading this. But I’m doing it anyway, mostly for myself. This year it’s a shorter list, as some of the things from last year (changes in how I’m eating and things like that) are just how I do things now.

More Mid-Atlantic travel
Too bad Mobile, AL isn’t the Mid-Atlantic, because I’m going there next month! Maybe this year I will try to talk some folks into a trip to Annapolis or something.

Start learning how to use my D40 in manual mode
Still trying to figure out the best way to do this. I’m hoping a summer session class at Notre Dame might be a possibility. We’ll see.

Knit
I didn’t knit much this year, partially because I got a sewing machine in the spring and was using that a bunch, and partially because I had two sweater projects that both stalled out. But I think Mom was hoping for another pair of socks for her birthday, and one corner of my living room is dedicated to yarn. So I’m going to try and focus on smaller projects that are finished more quickly, and don’t have the issues of “does this fit and does it look good?” that a sweater has.

See Foxie Renard in action!
Last year some other things came up, and in the end I didn’t make it up to Providence to see Foxie skate. This year, however, I am going to make it happen. And I need to take a flight on Southwest by July in order to get a free round-trip, so this seems like a perfect excuse.

Go on a freakin’ date.
Hello, Internet dating. Nice to see you again (I think?).