Search This Blog

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Book: The Other Half of My Heart by Sundee Tucker Frazier

The Other Half of My HeartThe Other Half of My Heart by Sundee T. Frazier

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

11-year old Minni and Keira are twins…but not only are they not identical, Minni is white (she has light skin and red hair) and Keira is black (she has dark skin and dark hair). This difference was able to occur because their mother is black and their father is white. The girls never really gave it that much thought, but Minni begins to notice how some strangers treat Keira differently from her (in school, in stores, etc.), and Minni suspects that it’s because of the color of Keira’s skin.

The girls feel this difference even more when they visit their grandmother and enter a beauty pageant for black girls; the other girls competing tell Minni that she’s not really black because of the color of her skin. On the surface of it all, Minni knows that’s not true, but deep down she becomes confused and wonders if she is white, or black, or…maybe, a mixture of both?

This is a great story about how a girl tries to find herself as she enters adolescence, which is made all the more difficult because her sister’s skin doesn’t match her own. For more books about sisters that readers might also enjoy, try The Sisters Club series (MacDonald).

View all my reviews >>


Okay, SummerSlam was this past Sunday (August 15) and I wasn't planning on watching it. Of course I wasn't going to shell out $50 or whatever it would cost me to order it, and, sometimes, finding a stream online on which to watch it gets stressful if the stream sucks or is cut or whatever. Plus, being the huge Edge fan that I am and knowing that he'd only be participating in the stupid Nexus match, I wasn't too excited about the whole ppv.

But then around 7:30pm (CST) I got a bit curious and told myself that I'd try to find a stream; I kept thinking about who would be the 7th member of Team WWE (or is it Team Raw?), who would be named Raw's general manager, and who would turn heel; all topics that were swirling around iwc.

I came in around the time The Miz was in the ring getting ready to announce whether or not he was going to join Team WWE or not. So I missed Dolph and Kofi's match for the I-C title (which was interrupted by stupid Nexus anyhow) and the divas match, which I couldn't care less about. They should just get rid of the women, ha ha. I want to watch the hot guys, not some scantily-clad, under-nourished (for the most part), overly-made-up ho's, ha ha.

The other matches: Big Show vs the SES (Big Show won), Sheamus vs Randy Orton for the WWE title (Sheamus was disqualified, so the title didn't change hands), and
Rey Mysterio vs Kane (Kane won and the Undertaker came back for the first time in months--from a casket! I was surprised when he came out of the previously empty casket; I'm sometimes easily surprised, what can I say).

I didn't really care about the Big Show/SES match; I only wanted Big Show to win because that might mean that the SES will disband and the whole straight edge thing will die. I used to not mind/sort of like CM Punk until then; now he's totally gross and annoying with all of his hairiness and preaching. Luke Gallows just grosses me out; he reminds me of some guy that tries to touch people when they don't want to be touched or something. Joey Mercury and Serena don't interest me at all.

The Sheamus/Randy Orton match seemed slow to me at first, but then it was really good until Sheamus had to go be a dumbass and get disqualified and bring everything to a screeching halt...until Randy RKO'd him on the announce table. Nice!

I didn't care too much about the Rey Mysterio/Kane match either. I'm not a huge Rey fan and Kane is interesting to me but not too exciting. I cared more for what would happen with the Undertaker's return; I wondered, would it be during the match or after? Well, he made his appearance afterwards. He exchanged some words with Rey-which I couldn't understand on the stream I was watching-and then angrily turned to Kane. He tried to do the tombstone piledriver but things didn't turn out the way he planned; instead, Kane did the tombstone piledriver on him! This was to show that the Undertaker isn't as strong as he used to be after his time 'in a vegetative state.' (That was a pretty stupid storyline, by the way. And why use the term 'vegetative state'...why not use he's in a coma or he's been unconscious..? And how did he come out of it? Was he under a doctor's care or something? Well, whatever). Since I'll be at Night of Champions next month, I'm pretty happy that he'll probably be in a match then.

The final match was the Team WWE vs Nexus. I sort of have less to say on this match than all the rest, even though my guy Edge was in it. When The Miz's music hit because he was supposed to be the 7th guy on the team, John Cena stopped his entrance and announced that the team couldn't wait so long to get an answer from him, so they asked someone else. I was hoping it wouldn't be Daniel Bryan--not because I don't like him as a wrestler--I just don't really care for anything having to do with Nexus AND Bryan is a little guy (and I usually like the bigger guys) AND he's not hot (let's face it). He'll be what Rey Mysterio and Evan Bourne are to me--sort of entertaining but not one of my favorites at all. But sure enough, it was indeed Bryan and everyone seems just so happy over this. Blah blah, I'll just wait for the hype to die down over this because I don't really care.

Anyway, Edge wasn't even in the match that long (I think he pinned the Elmer Fudd guy and fought with the red-haired guy for a bit--Heath Slater) before arguing with John Cena about who should be tagged in...then he was pinned by surprise (I forget by whom)...then he and Chris Jericho beat John Cena up a little bit before leaving. Cena ended up winning the match for Team WWE by pinning someone I forget and then the slicked-back-with-grease British guy Wade Barrett I think his name is. A lot of people were pissed about Cena winning it all again, but it didn't surprise me; that's how WWE rolls!

So I was less-than-impressed with this ppv. I think it's outrageous that the WWE expects its fans to drop like $50 on ppvs 12 months a year...that comes out to around $600/year! That is INSANE. Plus, if I actually paid for one of these, I'd want it to be AWESOME and MIND-BLOWING and all that. This--and many other ones I've watched via stream--have been meh.

I'm so scared that Edge is going to retire soon and I don't have a huge crush on anyone else right now! Maybe Randy Orton, but I've heard that he's an asshole in real life. Plus he collects guns--yikes. Well anyway.

Library Laments

Overly made-up/fried-hair older lady patron: Where is there an internet computer. [a statement, not a question]

Me: *gestures at stand-up use computer* Right over here; it's a ten-minute-limit one that doesn't print, but you're free to use it; otherwise there are many computers for adults upstairs.

OMU/FHOLP: I've used the computer here before to check my email and print. Today I'm in a hurry.

Me: Okay.

(computer is occupied by a mom and son, OMU/FHOLP walks up behind them)

OMU/FHOLP: *sighs loudly, then points to a kids' game computer and calls across the open space* What about that one?

Me: *looks up from work* Umm, no, that's a children's computer for games. The stand-up one is the only internet computer on this floor.

OMU/FHOLP: *fidgets for a moment behind mom and son* There aren't any other computers?

Me: *looks up from work again* Uhh, no, not on this floor. There are computers for adults upstairs. *sighs*

OMU/FHOLP: *fidgets a bit more, then wanders off upstairs*

(mom and son almost immediately vacate the stand-up computer)


Saturday, August 14, 2010

Book: The Boy Who Drew Cats adapted by Margaret Hodges

The Boy Who Drew CatsThe Boy Who Drew Cats by Margaret Hodges

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I learned about this Japanese folktale from the book Wild Things by Clay Carmichael. This is a story about a Japanese boy who is the youngest boy in his large family. Because he isn’t physically built for farm work like the rest of his family, his parents decide to have him apprentice to the town’s priest so that he might become a priest one day.

However, the boy has an odd desire to draw cats all of the time. When he’s at the temple, he draws cats everywhere—enough to make the priest tell him that he would be better off as an artist—so he gets sent away. Before the boy leaves, the priest tells him to remember to not sleep in big spaces—to only sleep in small spaces. The boy doesn’t understand, but doesn’t ask the priest to clarify.

Rather than go home and shame his family, the boy decides to go to the temple in the next town. When he arrives, it appears as though no one is there. While waiting for someone to arrive so that he could ask to be apprenticed to one of them, he finds some ink and draws cats all over. When it gets late and the boy grows tired, he remembers the priest’s words and decides to sleep in a small cabinet.

During the night, the boy wakes to the awful sounds of screaming and fighting. Terrified, he stays still in his cabinet and doesn’t even peek through the crack until daytime. When finally does, he sees the dead and mutilated body of some sort of huge goblin. The boy wonders who could have killed this evil being until he looks around and sees that all of the mouths of the cats he had drawn are red with blood.

He then understood the priest’s advice…and was able to grow up to be a famous artist!

View all my reviews >>

Scaring Children

I came across this article today and it's hilarious. Not the article itself, but the pictures it's about.

My favorite one is "whore spider." :)


Thursday, August 12, 2010

Library Laments

Earlier today I saw a little kid (a girl) dressed up as Belle from Beauty and the Beast. I'm sorry, but when little girls dress up as those Disney princesses, like these, or just princess costumes in general, they look like little whores.

It brings to mind that show Toddlers and Tiaras, though I haven't actually ever seen it on tv.

When boys dress up as their favorite characters, they don't look like little pimps!

Generally, I just don't think it's cute to let kids dress up in costumes outside of the house--especially when the costume makes said child look like a prostitute.

Book: How to Clean a Hippopotamus: a Look at Unusual Animal Partnerships by Steve Jenkins

How to Clean a Hippopotamus: A Look at Unusual Animal PartnershipsHow to Clean a Hippopotamus: A Look at Unusual Animal Partnerships by Steve Jenkins

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This is a cute book! Not only are the pictures adorable, but the information provided is interesting.

The information is presented in an almost comic book format, which is different for a nonfiction book. We learn about animal symbiosis--how certain wild animals/insects/fish/etc. work together to eat, get clean, hunt, and more.

Only 32 pages, it is a quick read!

View all my reviews >>

Friday, August 6, 2010

Movie: Inception

I had heard great reviews for Inception so I convinced my husband to go see it (with the agreement that he could go online on his phone if he got bored--IF there wasn't anyone sitting near us). So we went and um.....yeah.

I was a fan of Leo back in the Romeo and Juliet and Titanic days, so seeing him all grown up and heavier was kind of blah for me. But I've seen previews of other movies where he looked even heavier than in this movie--so I guess I shouldn't complain. Plus, he was fine in this.

I guess my biggest thing was that it was sort of confusing: a dream within a dream within a dream within a dream (I think that's enough dreams--I may be forgetting one). And the special effects were good too, but not like orgasmically good or anything. It just sort of reminded me of the Matrix movies in terms of visual effects. And that girl from that high school pregnant girl movie wasn't that great--at least to me. She just seemed unbelievable in every aspect of her character; she still looks high-school aged and we're to believe that she's a serious architect student at the top of her class, able to grasp the whole maze of dreams thing and blah blah blah...just no.

So, I guess you should go see it if you want to see what all the hype is about, but it's probably not worth it. Get it on Netflix or something and see something else instead.

I give it 2/5

Movie: Dinner for Schmucks

I thought Dinner for Schmucks was pretty good! I went not really knowing what to expect and found that I really enjoyed it.

A quick plot synopsis: a guy named Tim works for a stockbroking (?) firm and wants to make it "to the seventh floor", which is where all the important guys work. To see if he'll fit in the shoes of the guy who just got fired, Tim is invited to a dinner where everyone is supposed to bring a guest--not just any guest, but someone really strange/odd so that these "important" rich guys can make fun of them. Tim's girlfriend wants him to get out of going because, well, making fun of people is mean. When Tim accidentally hits someone (Barry) reaching for a dead mouse in the street that he plans on using in his dioramas, Tim thinks he has found his guy and that fate brought them together. After a number of crazy adventures and misunderstandings (chiefly involving Tim's girlfriend), Tim and Barry realize that they can be real friends.

This movie had some funny moments, some awwww moments, and some wtf moments. Maybe because I'm a chick myself, I don't know, but I didn't love the Darla character. So creepily annoying! I'm sure that's what the producers/directors were going for but it seemed way over the top.

That aside, it was a good movie. I usually enjoy Paul Rudd and Steve Carell and I wasn't disappointed!

Overall, I give it 3.5/5

Thursday, August 5, 2010

library laments

An [older] mother was saying to her friend/relative that it's impossible to keep kids from playing computer games at home (her kids were toddler-aged).

This just reinforces my question: can't you just say NO?

Parents of today and their kids are just getting worse. I feel like I can say that because I see it everyday, and have been seeing it for around 7 years.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Book: Eva by Peter Dickinson

EvaEva by Peter Dickinson

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This futuristic story is about an adolescent girl whose brain is put into a chimp's body in order to save her life after an accident destroys her own. This happens because her father works for a company that studies chimps, so she becomes part of the company's research.

I would have thought Eva would be more angry about having to live as a chimp for the rest of her life, but she seems to take it well--I think this is because she had spent a lot of time with her father and the chimps he studied. In fact, she knew the chimp whose body she now inhabits. She is able to communicate orally using a specialized keyboard that gives a voice to her words.

It was interesting to witness the changes that Eva goes through as her mind comes to terms with having lived as a human for over a decade, but then having to live as a chimp. At first Eva spends more time in the human world--she lives at home with her parents and she even attends school. But, as time passes, it appears as though she feels more of a connection with the chimps being studied.

I liked this book; I listened to the audio version of it, and I have to admit that it was entertaining listening to the reader make chimp grunting noises.

I'd recommend this book to readers who enjoy futuristic stories, human/animal relations stories, or simply like stories about the strange and bizzare.

View all my reviews >>