Tuesday, June 19, 2012

WTF

Hey, this is a PG-13 blog, so don't even let your mind go there. Wednesday-Thursday-Friday.  That's what it stands for.

So, yeah, it's Wednesday on the old Death Writer blog and I have neither a writer nor a professional to talk with today. I am totally to blame as I didn't actively pursue anyone to interview until, well, today.  And that would be Tuesday.  I've been living.  My son has been learning to swim.  He's 8 and when we lived on that mountain in Colorado, we didn't exactly have swimming pools behind every house.  So, he's learning how to be a little fishy a little later than most kids.  But, what he lacks in experience, he makes up for with exuberance.  He is slowly discovering how to move about in water.  Yes, it freaks him out, but like his mom, he jumps in anyway.  Sometimes with a gentle nudge from the instructor.

I've also been reading the Bible, a lovely Children's edition from the 60's, for my other writing project on religion.  And let me tell you, it takes a loooooooooong time to read the Bible.  You probably already know this if you're a Christian, but like my son, I'm arriving to the party a little late.  Anyway, I'm like a graduate of the Evelyn Woods speed reading course and I still haven't gotten very far into it.  I'm writing down passages and scratching my head and wondering where Cain's wife came from and all sorts of other stuff that makes no sense.  Maybe if I'd read this earlier in my life, I'd get it.  I've got four different Bibles, but I like the Children's one the best.  I'm also starting a Bible study group on Sunday and I did the whole week's lesson in one day.  When it asks, so how do you feel about Jesus now (I'm paraphrasing) I'm like, the same as I did yesterday.  Ah, faith.  Where art thou?

I've also been reading The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath.  This could be contributing to my lackadaisical attitude this week.  I'm kind of sucked in and repelled at the same time.  I always knew that she'd committed suicide at the age of thirty and I'm thinking this book is somewhat autobiographical of her life, despite it being fiction.  I could be wrong.  I often am.  It's kind of making me sad, but I would feel like a giant jerk if I didn't finish it.
Here's Sylvia and her husband in happier days

So, I'm sorry I didn't provide you with a witty, wonderful writer or an angel of a professional today.  Next week, I promise.

So, what are you reading?  And if you don't read, can you swim?  I certainly hope so. Because life would be pretty darn boring without books and large bodies of water.  So, did you take lessons or did your older brother throw you in the deep end and you kind of winged it?  An inquiring mind wants to know.

23 comments:

  1. I think this was a great post, P.

    I read a '60s Children's edition of the Bible early on. It was my first run of the whole thing and I can see the pictures in my head. Abel and Cain all in their animal skins. The images of many random people holding up one arm against bright lights shining down from heaven.

    My daughter is eight and she's learning to swim this summer, too. Watched an episode of 'St. Elsewhere,' last night, in which a psychiatrist some forty years old is learning to swim. No time like the present to get fishy.

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    1. Thanks!
      Yeah, this one has a lot of pictures, which adds to its allure.

      Both my mom and my mother-in-law can't swim and they are in their late 70's. I think maybe it's a generational thing. When I was a kid, I didn't take swimming lessons. I am not a great swimmer, but I do know how to float and to me, that's the most important skill in the water.

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  2. Great post. It's interesting - as a teenager I stopped swimming after watching Jaws and I was also one of those morose teenage girls who read and re-read Plath's work and dreamed of an artistic suicide that wouldn't result in pain or death. (The Bell Jar is semi-autobiographical, by the way.)

    Since you asked...right now I'm finishing a novel my stepson gave me called The Eight by Katherine Neville, a Da Vinci Code type of story. I'm forcing myself to finish it, but I don't think I'm smart enough to keep track of the plot.

    I'm really supposed to be reading One Nation Under God: The History of Prayer in America by James P. Moore, Jr. I'm reading it for background on my street preacher story (which isn't really a story yet, although I did get one of the preachers to agree to speak with me on Saturday when he's protesting the gay pride parade). I'll let you know how the book is - maybe it's relevant to your religion project.

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    1. I haven't read anything by Plath before this. I'm not a huge fan of poetry. I like to hear it read, but I don't like to read it.
      Yes, let me know how that book is and good luck with the interview.

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  3. I grew up in Colorado and I'm a crappy swimmer. Maybe the two are linked in some way.

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    1. Well, I guess it depends on where you live in Colorado. We lived outside of Durango and the nearest pool was in Ignacio, so it was kind of a trek and there were always way too many people in the pool. Or it could just be that if you live in Colorado, you're probably hiking or skiing or evading wildfires. Geez, it looks bad there right now.

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    2. My roommate lived just outside of Denver and somehow tanning and cold water don't mix well.

      And he couldn't afford a heated pool.

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    3. That's one of the things I miss about Colorado--mild summers and low humidity!

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  4. As always, I enjoyed your post this morning, Pamela.
    Swimming - yeah, I learned how when I was a kid but never really was good at it. I even took it in college just for fun but got frustrated b/c I could not master the turns and stuff. The instructor gave me a bye b/c I could not float -- my bones and muscle were too dense!

    Reading three things at the moment: A Wild Surge of Guilty Passion - my just for fun book of the week - true life crime with a twist - published in 2011, the story actually took place in urban east coast circa 1927 - Ron Hanson is a terrific story teller.
    For more both fun and games and , yes, reflection, I have that Whole Death Catalog going on - lots of short pieces that run the whole range of death related topics.
    And, finally, the new issue of The Sun features some interviews with James Hillman. Odd b/c the magazine arrived yesterday right after I returned from session with shrink and we spoke briefly about the impact of James Hillman on psychotherapy. Now I am reading The Sun but also some on line stuff about him. Can you tell how I like to spend my summer time?

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    1. I love the Sun. I have an essay sent into them and I still haven't been rejected, so I'm taking that as a good sign. Either that, or I forgot to send a SASE. I started reading an essay in there about a shy woman going to a reunion/party and I could only read part of it online. Have you read that yet? It was so good and I could totally relate to her.
      Summer is the best time to read. I'm doing the reading club at my library and logging all my hours. I'm a total sucker for prizes!

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  5. I'm in the same boat with you when it comes to translations of the Bible. Maybe "faith" is hiding somewhere in the translation.

    Excellent post. And don't forget the sunscreen.

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    1. Dude, you are talking to the sunscreen queen! I am so pale that I can burn within 20 minutes.

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  6. When I was growing up it was creeks and lakes, not pools. My Dad threw me into the creek to teach me to swim. He assured me he wouldn't come rescue me, and he didn't! I managed to do it though and I've been in love with swimming ever since. I have to tell you that the greatest "swimming" experience is in the Dead Sea. You just wade in and lie back into the water. You couldn't sink if you wanted to!

    At the moment I'm reading Arabian folklore tales and they are amazing! I'm thinking of weaving one or two of them into my current WIP.

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    1. Are there sharks in the Dead Sea? That's what would freak me out and prevent me from floating. I'd be lying back and relaxing and bam! I'd be an extra salty shark snack.

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  7. I'm not really sure you can call what I do swimming. Maybe purposeful water displacement? :)

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    1. As long as you're in the water moving, that is swimming in my book.

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  8. I'm coming late to this conversation but that's exactly how felt when I started reading the Bible - like "wait, where did that person come from?" and "that's not what it said a minute ago!" I've been reading a lot more religious writing recently, almost by accident, but I guess it's kinda also research for my book? I just finished the first in CS Lewis's sci-fi trilogy for grown-ups, which I haven't read for years. It's a weird, beautiful, head-scratcher of a read. I mean, it's very Christian, but at the same time he's also writing about a cosmology in which the Earth is not the only planet with God's people on it, which is very interesting for a Catholic. I'm also reading a foolish amount of Chaim Potok, who writes these incredible novels about the Orthodox Jewish community, which seems to me to be in many ways weirdly like the conservative Christian community. Fascinating stuff from both authors about the struggle to mix science and religion in a way that makes room for both. I kind of wonder what you'd think of them, especially Potok.

    And I'm with DL on the purposeful water displacement :)

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    1. Hey Jericha:
      You need to go follow my other blog as I have exactly one follower and it's all about religion. But you know what? I'm scared of posting on that blog. Why? Because religion, or my lack of understanding of it, scares me more than death. I'm not talking I'm afraid of what's next after my death, I fear judgement from the living.
      I have put down the Plath book because I have one book I need to finish reading this weekend to prepare for an interview. I am starting a Bible study at a Catholic Church next month so I'm going to read it with them and see what they have to say. I think I'm in way over my head.
      As always, thanks for commenting.

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    2. Dude, it's totally true. Writing about religion is f!#&ing FRIGHTENING. Going and following now! So you will HAVE to write! *evil laughter*

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  9. I like this post :)
    Religion is so interesting. When I was younger I studied all different religions of the world. I now consider myself an everythingist - hey who I am to judge which is right and which is wrong? I also read and swim - yes, I'm just that talented ;)

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    1. Did one resonate with you more? Just wondering.
      Thanks for stopping by. And just keep swimming, just keep swimming, swimming, swimming.
      I think I watch too many kids' movies.

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  10. Ha. I read that(at first) I've also been writing the Bible...oh my....(sorry).

    I can swim & lately I have been accepting my 47 yr old body in a bathing suit & jumping into the waves(ok, only 4 times so far, but the summer is very young).

    Suze suggested we stop by...~Mary

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  11. Hi FrankandMary! I immediately thought of Frankenberry when I wrote that. Welcome to the death blog. I'm glad you can swim and that you are accepting of your 47 year old body. That's a good thing. You must live near the ocean because most pools, unless their really cool, don't have waves. I'm afraid of sharks, so I stick to the pool.
    Thanks for stopping by!

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Comments are welcome and appreciated!