Books Make a Better World

Clash Cultures

I am an actress, millennial, and graduated college with a double major in English and Theatre. That being said, I am broke. Oh, I am also a bibliophile. To the extreme.

I went to London for a semester, and I threw away clothes to bring back my loot from visiting all the used book stores on Charring Cross Road. And about 50% of my free time was spent at the British Library for fun (I look back on my library card from there and sigh in happiness). tumblr_mvynebz76u1shl7gro1_500

I break into a sweat whenever I walk into Barnes and Noble.

I cried when I found out Borders were being closed.

All the librarians at the Newark Public Library know my face, if they do not know my name.

I have a book on me at all times. And I mean ALL THE TIME.

So being obsessed with words, and having no…

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Here to Save the Day

Clash Cultures

By: Alicia Whavers

steven-universe-logo

I am pretty sure that at this point, if you haven’t watched one of those 13 minute episodes, then you have at least heard of the amazing awesomeness that is Steven Universe. And if you happen to know me, you would know that I am freaking obsessed with this show.

My love for Steven and the Crystal Gems was not an immediate thing. I remember the teaser trailers about the show back when I was a sophomore in college. Most of them consisted of a talking pearl, garnet, and amethyst floating through space with Steven (in the form of a Rose Quartz). And in the haze of school class, school drama, and work, I overlooked the show.

It was actually 2 years later when I sat down and saw my first episode “Cat Fingers”, that I thought “hey, maybe there is something to this show after…

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Swallowing Gum and Taking Names

Clash Cultures

        Kristen Stewart, Alec Baldwin and Melissa McCarthy ALL in Studio 8H

The closest understanding I have to what it is like to be a fan of a sports team is being a fan of Saturday Night Live. The players change, they have seasons, you still cheer for them when they suck and you’re oddly really proud of them when they don’t suck. So I knew that no matter what happened on Super Bowl Sunday, my team was doing pretty freaking great.

This past season of Saturday Night Live has been exceptional. There have been a few duds(as with any season) but not the most recent one! The most recent episode with host, Kristen Stewart was excellent. Here are some of my favorite highlights:

Set Photos: Kristen Stewart and Alessia CaraOval Office Open

When the “Grab em by the pussy” video was leaked before the election, I applauded SNL writers for changing the…

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Lack of Privacy

So. Let me know if I am overreacting okay?

I live in a small apartment  (read: small). I am also broke (read: extremely broke). This has resulted in me still living at home trying to pay bills and my student loans off, while inhabiting the same space that I have for almost 21 years. This space I share with my sister. I am 23. My sister is 19.

2 fully (biologically if not mentally/emotionally/spiritually, I wanna be a kid forever) women.

1 room.

The battle for privacy commences.

Wait. Did I say privacy? Hah! That’s a joke. Why? Because we don’t have a door to our room.

I repeat. No. Door.

Why? Well let me tell you a story that took place about 4 years ago:

My sister, being the youngest, believes that it is her God given duty to challenge any suggestion I send her way. So when I say “Do not lean on the door like that”, she takes it to mean “Well I’m gonna throw myself at the door in any way I wish”. This is what happens when you put 2 combative personalities together in 1 small cell. I mean room.

Well my sister’s inclination to throwing herself at points of egress resulted in the breaking of the door. I swear, hearing that cheap pinewood crack off it’s hinges while like hearing a bone breaking in my body.

I looked at her. She looked at me. I was so conflicted with emotions that I was stone silent. Should I A) laugh at her because when the door went down, so did she, B) Feel satisfaction with the knowledge that I was right, C) Say one of the most satisfying sentences of all, “I told you so”, or D) realize that I no longer have a door which means that now my entire family will hear how I cackle at my books.

Well the answer was E) None of the above. I did what any mature 19-year-old would do. I looked her in the eye, took a deep breath, and bellowed “MOOOOOOM!”

Mothers fix things. Mothers are able to weigh situations and can assess the damage and what needs to be done.

I was sorely disappointed.

Instead of a scolding or a lecture or ANYTHING that would show my sister that I was right and she was wrong and that she would have the pay the price for breaking our door, I get a “Why didn’t you tell her not to lean on the door?”.

I reply to my parental unit, “I told her not to lean on the door but she didn’t listen”. And the reply I receive? My former incubator turns to the other and says, “Well, you are going to learn your lesson because you now don’t have a door”.

Lesson? LESSON?

Where was the fire and brimstone that needed to be hailed upon the heathen’s head as retribution for the destruction of property, and as a result, my privacy? My sister prefers the living room to use as her monster’s den, while I occupy our room. So she is unaffected by the demolition of our door.

The demon spawn looks suitably chastised, and apologizes. When my former host leaves the room, the Devil’s ilk turns to me and says “Well. Guess I should have listened, haha!”. How did I end up the one being punished?

After a certain amount of time, the door was replaced.

About 2 years later it was broken again.

I am now 23 without a door to my room.

Anybody looking for a new roommate?


Just Not Trump

So in light of the Presidential election, my mother and I thought “I would vote for a pile of sh*t before I vote for Trump”. And thus came this little video, shot in about 20 minutes Just Not Trump. Check it out and leave a comment!

And please, please please! If you are eligble to vote and are not registered, or are not sure if you are registered, please visit I Will Vote!


Time For a Change

So, as the title of this entry denotes, it is time for a change. After basically sitting on my ass (working my ass off at 3+ part-time jobs) for what feels like 10 years (2 years, but these are trivial facts) I have decided that things need to change. The question is: what needs to change?

All to often I hear this word being thrown around. “I need a change!”, 1/2 of a couple might yell at another during a heated argument about who said would get the milk. Or the classic “It is time to change your ways”, usually said with derision and not a little bit of scorn. And, my personal favorite, “I think it’s time for a change”. Why is this my favorite? Because it leaves so much room to not change. You think it’s time for a change, but you’re not really sure. You know it’s time for something, but what? And yes, change is good, but is it necessary?

And for me, the short answer is: yes. Yes. I am bored. I am stifled. I feel like a hamster running around in a wheel. Flitting from one job to the next is all fine and well, but there comes a time in one’s life when you want stability to be your one and only. I think it’s time for career-monogamy. Goodbye 9 hour shifts at the movie theaters! So long boring database trenching! GTFO you measly and unpredictable paychecks. I’m not gonna miss you as much as you would like.

So. Who wants to hire a recently unemployed college graduate? Microsoft? Google? I’ll shall look at all Fortune 500 inquiries!

 


One Little Lie: A Luna Susan George Mystery by Steven Tyler (2014)

I love mystery novels. I love comedic novels. And when you put those two together, I am in absolute reading heaven.

One Little Lie - PictureTyler’s One Little Lie is a combination of the two, and does it quite well. The main character Luna, who prefers to go by Susan thank-you-very-much, works administratively at her brother’s P.I. agency. And by the slip of one little lie, Susan is now enmeshed in a full-fledged art-theft case. Oh, and she has to find a missing cat. Well, she was originally hired to find a missing cat and then became involved in the art-theft case…by her own volition.

All too often I have read female characters written by males to be extremely one-dimensional. Susan’s knowledge of the latest fashion trends, the California real estate market, and detailed knowledge of art despite only having a B.A. in art history is a bit of a stretch, but is forgiven because Susan is a caricature of a private investigator (literally and literature-ly), so it makes sense that she is a pseudo-caricature of a woman. Tyler’s descriptions of the other characters are hysterical. There is an ex-convict groundskeeper, a pair of extortionist teenagers, an Irish cop, and a rich alien-groupie. These characters, and more, are hyperboles of themselves yet stop just short of being satirical. This novel is one to read and enjoy, not necessarily ponder the faults of private investigators (though it is written in a way that one can).

In my opinion, this book is actually reminiscent of Toole’s Confederacy of Dunces, and, dare I say, Pynchon’s The Crying of Lot 49. And yes, I did say that I would not consider One Little Lie a satire, and compared it to two satires. But the mix of whacky – yet familiar – characters, as well as Susan’s general attitude towards others is not dissimilar to Ignatius J. Reilly. The overall lunacy that Susan finds herself in is similar to Oedipa Maas. The overall tone of it is also founded in reality; Susan has bit off more than she can chew, and don’t we all know that feeling?

There is a neat little bow placed at the end of the story. And if this were a serious mystery novel, I would be disappointed. But because I find One Little Lie to be more of a comedy than a mystery, that can be forgiven as well.

I would not recommend this for anyone who wants a serious mystery novel (sorry Alex Cross fans). But I would say that is a story that most can enjoy. In fact, it’s a great holiday read guaranteed to give you a chuckle.

 

Overall Rating: 3.5 out of 5


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