books and cats (cliched journaling entry #325)

It’s been rather monotonous here. I’m writing, I’m reading, I’m working. Doesn’t make for much of a journal entry, but I don’t want you to think that I’ve forgotten you.

So, I figured to appease you and to clear my conscience, I’ll just blah-blah on about how droll things are, and whenever you’re about to fall asleep, I’ll flash a cute cat picture. I could even talk about my referral list, if we really run out of stuff to talk about and I want to become a complete cliche.

Let’s see. I’ve been reading. I mentioned that. I finished Lullaby, which wasn’t as scary as I thought it was going to be, but just the right amount of disturbing that I love about Chuck Palahniuk.

I do this… thing… where some of us…. read a play… or see an old movie… or we go see performance… wine… cheese… discussion…

I’m in a group where we read plays and discuss them, or we see movies we’ve never seen but we’re supposed to.

I know. I’m turning old right before your eyes. We had this once when I was in college, and we called it Avenue F, I think, and I’m pretty sure it lasted about three meetings before everyone got sick of each other. But this is a small group, and so far it’s gone well. We just would have gotten together anyway, but now we’re getting together with homework.

Shut up. It’s good for me. It’s healthy. I finally read The Homecoming. And last week we read Painting Churches, which I was the only one to like because I seem to be the only person that likes Tina Howe plays.

Anyway, this week it’s Spinning Into Butter, which I read last night during a hot bath and I really enjoyed it. I think it’s going to make for an interesting discussion, as it’s about white guilt racism, something I’ve seen my entire life, no matter what city I was living in.

Hey. At least I’m using my degree for something.

Yes, it has a name. Shut up.

I’m not telling you.

Stop. Leave me alone.

We’re also putting the Anne Heche show up again, for six weeks at the Hudson Theater, starting January 10th. That’s my little plug, right there. For those of you who live in the LA area, I promise it’s a fun show.

What can you do to help? Well, I’m glad you asked me. Hmm? You didn’t what? I can’t hear you.

Anyway, if you’re interested in supporting the Hollywood Free Clinic and would like to make my life a little easier, and you have a copy of Anne Heche’s Call Us Crazy that you don’t want anymore (hardcover or paperback), and you’d like to send it to me so we can sell it at the show, let me know. We’re going to sell used copies at the show and donate the proceeds to the Hollywood Free Clinic, and it seems nobody bought this damn book, so any copies you might like to ship my way, me and all the other people that have had to use the Hollywood Free Clinic over the years would greatly appreciate it. Oh, and Anne Heche would too, I bet. Sure. Probably.

So my friend Jessica recommended this book to me, Life of Pi, and it sat on my shelf for a really long time. She’s a really good judge of what I’d like. Last year she handed me a proof of The Lovely Bones before it was released. I was reading it on airplanes, as it was a time when I had to fly to Texas over and over in a month.

“What’s that you’re reading?” people would ask me, as the title is intriguing and the cover is pretty.

“The nation’s next bestseller,” I’d always answer.

I loved that book so much. “You were right!” Jessica said after the book came out. “It’s been number one for weeks, all from word of mouth.”

One woman is convinced it’s because of all the air travel I did that month, telling everyone all over the country to read that book.

Anyway, so Life of Pi. It just sat there, collecting dust, being brushed off longer than The Bonesetter’s Daughter, a book I put off because I hate having to wait so long to read more Amy Tan. If she’s going to take forever to write a book, I can take forever sitting down to read it. I was giving Amy Tan the passive-aggressive cold shoulder.

It’s called The Culture Club, okay? There. Are you happy now? I’m in a silly group called The Culture Club.


So, Life of Pi. Yeah. Tried the first chapter and I was like, “Sleepy… getting sleepier…. historical blah, blah… words I can’t pronounce… culture… sleepy… zzzzzz.”

I tried again. “I know at some point there’s going to be a boy on a boat with a tiger and that sounds so Jungle Book and boring and it’s reminding me of junior high when I had to read Great Books and then I zzzzzzzzzzzzz…”

I put it on the shelf and forgot about it.

I was giving Jessica every Chuck Palahniuk I had the other day when both of our eyes rested on Life of Pi. I pulled it out and handed it to her.

Oh, here. Yes. This is yours.

Did you read it?

No. I tried.

Pam! It just won the Booker Prize. Read it.

The Booker Prize? Oh, no. You just said the Kiss of Death.

It’s a literature prize? For good books?

Also known as “Books Pamie Can’t Stand.”

Are you serious?

Have you read any other Booker Prize winners? It’s always like, “I’m a sentence without punctuation, living a hard, gross Trainspotting-worthy life.” First I tried that How Late It Was, How Late, which I quickly renamed How Hard I Was To Read, How Hard, or any of those Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha books.

Are you still speaking English?

There was one called e or maybe it was just a semicolon or something. The Booker Prize is a big warning light for me.

You just hate the Scottish.

No, I don’t!

Please, please, please try the book again. Get far enough to meet Pi. Once you meet Pi, I promise you’ll be hooked.

If there’s one “Me Da” in there, I’m putting the book down.

I don’t even know what that means.

So, I tried it again. And I met Pi. And in one night, I’ve read half the book. In fact, until I meet Jessica this afternoon for lunch and Harry Potter, I’m going to sit still and keep reading. It’s really, really good and I owe Jess a big apology for thinking she’d forgotten what kind of books I like to read.

Then she was going to read Trainspotting or Filth, but luckily I stopped her and told her to read Speaking With the Angel first, and if she liked his short story, then maybe she’d be able to stomach an entire novel.

I made Jessica read Bee Season, my favorite book from last year, and she loved it. So we’re even.

And, in closing, here’s Cal viciously attacking… his own foot.

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