Make That Three at a Time.

I don’t know how this happened. Actually, that sentence is what is called a bald-faced lie, as I do actually know how this happened, this being the fact that I am now reading three books at once. The three books in question are, in the order in which I started reading them:

The reasons why I am reading this books are as follows:

  1. book club
  2. I have no idea, and
  3. because I haven’t read it in some time; I like to reread books; lately I’ve been thinking quite a bit about Steve, who was my writing teacher twice in college; and it just so happened that there was an excerpt in The Best Food Writing 2004, which I finished reading earlier in the month.

I got entangled in these three very dissimilar books because :

  1. About a year ago I started a book club as a way to potentially meet new people and potentially read books I wouldn’t normally have chosen myself, which is how I ended up getting a used copy of Arsonist’s and reading it on my commute to and from work. Now, Arsonist’s is still in hardcover; while it’s not necessarily long it is still quite substantial, so when Keith and I went down to New York two weeks ago, I left it behind. I didn’t want to pack both my laptop (light at five pounds, but still) and the hardcover (not that long, but still) in my handbag (quite roomy, but still), especially because I would need to schlep everything around on the subway, since we weren’t leaving until after work. Instead I packed the infinitely lighter Best Food Writing 2004 And so…
  2. …when we got home from New York, I was fully embroiled in the food anthology and although I knew I could stop reading at the end of whatever excerpt I was in the middle of, I finished the book. This would have been the prime time to return to Arsonist’s, which I hadn’t really been enjoying as much as I hoped, but instead I reached for Intuition, which I purchased on recommendation (Whose? I don’t remember.) with a gift card I received for Christmas. This is where things got a bit repetitive: Keith and I are going to New York again this weekend, and it just so happens that my copy of Intuition is a bulky hardcover (also purchased used, by the way), and I’m again bringing my laptop, and I’m madly in love with my roomy handbag, and I’m not enjoying Intuition as much as I had hoped…
  3. …which brings me to Candyfreak. Like Arsonist’s and Intuition, I’ve Steve’s book in hardcover. Unlike Arsonist’s and Intuition, it was purchased at full-price, brand-new. In addition, it’s considerably smaller, both dimension-wise and length-wise. Oh, and I’m enjoying it much, much more.

I’m hoping, upon our return from New York, that I’ll finish Candyfreak, if I haven’t already done so, then plow through Intuition, before revving myself up to get Arsonist’s out of the way on or by the twenty-seventh, when book club meets. Then again, I might just pick up something else.

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Intro.

Hello, and welcome to my blog. This isn’t my maiden voyage into the blogosphere (really, is there a more ridiculous word out there than this?) but it is my first solo go of it. I’ve decided to blog because I like writing and I’m trying to get back into the writerly swing of things, which is truly difficult, I think, if you’re neither in school nor on a deadline. These both apply to me.

Anyway, I think the key to this whole blog-writing thing is to narrow your focus, which is why I’m going with three things I like to do the most — eat, read and travel. The first two happen to also be the things I do the most, aside from involuntary actions such as breathing and pumping my blood to my heart and etc, so I figure it will be (or should be) easy for me to keep up-to-date.

For example, this year I’ve already read The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion; the unabridged Tess of the D’Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy; Comfort Me With Apples: More Adventures at the Table by Ruth Reichl; The Best Food Writing 2004 and The Best Food Writing 2005, both edited by Holly Hughes; Loverboy by Victoria Redel; The House With a Clock in Its Walls by John Bellairs; A Genius in the Family: An Intimate Biography of Jacqueline du Pré by Hilary and Piers du Pré; and Toast by Nigel Slater. I’m also doing something I hate to do, and that’s read two books at once. I’ll let you know more about them (such as titles and authors) once I’m done.

I didn’t think my dining out experiences for 2008 would be nearly as long as my book list thus far, but that was before I went through my calendar and tallied it all up: Evoo, Gargoyles on the Square, The Paramount, Addis Red Sea, The Blue Room, Zöe’s, Strawberry Place, Peter Luger, Tavern in the Square, and The Barking Crab. To think, that list doesn’t even include the lunches we have brought in once a week at work.

However, I can say with absolute certainty that my travels for 2008 aren’t nearly as extensive; all I’ve done is visit my parents in New York, and I don’t even know if that should count. Regardless… Travel is something I love to do, and often. And the next time I do, I’ll write about it.

Basically, that’s what this blog boils down to — eating, reading and traveling. Writing too, I suppose, so maybe I’ll write about that as well. We’ll see.

Happy eating/reading/traveling/possibly writing…!