May 23, 2008

Fun Friday

I made this video for a friend to show off my book collection. The description includes time references and the timer can be found on the player itself.

Okay the video starts with a shot of my printer. This is a side view of the bookshelf as I see it from my desk. At second 3 I am am panning up the bookshelf to some hastily stacked books that were being sorted but got abandoned midprocess. The shelf is right next to the couch and I have to stand on the arm of the couch to access the books.

By second 4 you start to see more of the books. I am focusing on showing you the outside of the books, the middle two shelves are double stacked.
You can see a nice shot of that at second 7.

Also you see the books going from the top of the shelf to the ceiling. Then wobbly cam and me trying to block bright sunlight from window with my hand. At second 12 I am disoriented from having my hand over the cam and not knowing where it was "looking."

By second 15 I finally manage to get some books in the view. You are now looking at my massive stack of writing books. Yep the whole damn stack and that isn't even all of them.

Then at second 18 it sort of fades into darkness while I struggle to get the lighting right. By second 19 I have the lighting right and you can see the wood side of the bookshelf. In theory you can also see a few books sticking out, but they are mostly just a fuzzy slightly lighter place. Also it looks like there is a stack of books before moving to the next actual bookshelf. But those are not books. That is just a stack of stuff. Though some books are included in said stack.

This is my awesome bookshelf/TV stand. The top is all games. The books in the top 3 sections are all triple stacked. In the bottom sections around the TV they are double stacked.
Woah, woah. Get ahold of yourself there Megan.
Okay the bottom part has three sections like the top bit only one section has books which I am displaying for you at second 29. Those books are double stacked. AHHHHHHH! Seizure.

Okay now (second 33) you are looking through the door of this room, into the kitchen, through the kitchen, through the door to the OTHER side of the house. you can see a big green gap on the second to top shelf. Yes I know I do not have steady hands. And then I was trying to stop recording but couldn't manage to hit the bottom. If you get motion sick, just close your eyes.

May 19, 2008

I'm Sendng You to Boarding School

Last month I read Looking for Alaska, and one of the reasons why I adored it was that it represented my high school experience more than any book I have ever read.

You see, I went to boarding school. Now usually people think one of two things when they hear this. They think delinquent or they think snob. For years the first thing I was asked when I told people about boarding school was "What did you do (to get sent there)?" It didn't occur to people that you would go to boarding school to get a great education or to explore the Great Perhaps. People then ask me about uniforms (there were none) and if it was all girls (nope- that squashes a lot of male fantasies right there.)

There were no shoulders draped with sweaters,no pipes, or tea, or other rich snobbish cliches. Unlike wisteria's friend I didn't learn about drugs at boarding school. I learned about reading, writing, and learning. About the joy of research. (What can I say? I like it.) I learned about achievement, sports, family, mentors. I learned about fulfilling dreams, living up to my potential.

This was the ceremonial entrance to the school. You did not use it unless you were late. At the top is a bell tower and just inside the doors is the rotunda. These two elements of the school were the subject of many pranks. One year they lined the whole rotunda with little cups of water and shut all the doors. Well, all the doors opened IN, so the only way to get in was to dump the water.

This was my dorm my freshman and sophomore years.
Most of the dorms were converted houses. My room my sophomore year is the that window just over the porch.
Most of the faculty lived on campus and the majority of the lower level of this house was for the dorm parent.

What did I like best? Twisting the knob on the mailbox to see a letter inside! Sitting around talking about books in my classes. Laying in the spring grass giggling with friends. Buying books, donuts, and coffee. Flying to Europe, Australia, and South America.

Want to know more? Feel free to ask me anything you like. Leave your questions in the comments.

Mix Tape Monday - Chelsea Edition

Chelsea is my blogger best friend and book loving cohort. Apparently she keeps her addiction in the closet.

For this Monday Chelsea picked out her 5 favorite songs. We will get to those in a moment, first I wanted to know if she had been reading any good books about music lately. Here is what she recommends:
Well, I read an ARC of Audrey, Wait by Robin Benway a few months ago and really liked that. And I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone by Stephanie Kuehnert -- it's about so much more than music, but it's a key factor. LOVED that one. Ooh, I read a book called Guitar Girl by Sarra Manning a whiiiile ago and remember liking that one, too.

What about you bloggers out there, read any good books about music lately? A few months ago I read Getting Over Jack Wagner by Elise Juska. It is an absolute MUST for any music lover.

Chelsea is a self proclaimed semi-hippy with an independent taste in music. Her interests are lyrically driven, but it has to have a good melody because she likes to sing along.
I sing along all the time. Drives my family insane. But I listen to it on the computer. Or on my cellphone/mp3-player but it only works half the time.
How does she know what she likes?
Lyrics. That's how I know when I like a song -- I just can't listen to a song with crappy lyrics. It bugs me. Especially because I listen to a song over and over and over again, and then I tire of it. And have to find more. Listen to those for a while, go back to the old ones, etc,etc. But these here are songs that I've listened to for a while and STILL aren't sick of. That's a pretty big feat.
Anyone playing a particular song on repeat? Tell me which one in the comments!

If you know Chelsea at all you know that musically she cares about two things The Beatles and Jason Castro. Wait, is this a sign of a drug problem in the making? No, no probably not. Therefor it was no surprise when the first song
that Chelsea picked was "Imagine" by John Lennon. Why?
The lyrics! They're fantastic. It's about a perfect world, where everyone can live together in peace, but, as the song title suggests, that can only be imagined. There's too much hate in the world.
I was interested to learn how Chelsea got interested in older bands like The Beatles and the Rolling Stones (coming up next.)
Ahh! I don't know. I just remember hearing them all the time. And I love a lot of their songs -- they just kind of grew on me. None of my family really likes them. You know, it has less to do with the age of the song and more to do with the lyrics/music. I'm finding that a lot of older songs have better lyrics than, um, contemporary music.

Next up, "Paint It Black" by The Rolling Stones. Chelsea says:
I like this song when I'm in a grumpy, hate-the-world mood. (Which is about 60-70% of the time. Coffee always helps, though.) When I'm in one of those moods, I can definitely relate to the song.

"Trouble" by Coldplay was Chelsea's third pick.
I love the lyrics of the song. And the singer has a really unique voice. But what I really love is the piano. There's an acoustic version too, but I love this specific piano version because it's so different and melodic.

Coming up next is "You Only Live Once" by The Strokes. Chelsea says she loves the first verse of this song in particular.

Ooooooooh Ooooh Ooooh

Some people think they're always right
Others are quiet and uptight
Others they seem so very nice, nice, nice, nice, nice, nice...(oh-ho)
Inside they might feel sad and wrong (oh no)

Twenty-nine different attributes
Only seven that you like (uh oh)
Twenty ways to see the world (oh-ho)
Twenty ways to start a fight (oh-ho)

Finally we end with Chelsea's boyfriend.

Jason Castro singing "Clumsy" a pre-idol song which he sings to Chelsea while he looks longingly at her (see above.)

Get Music Tracks!Create A Playlist!

May 18, 2008

The Sunday Salon

The Sunday

I have been spending this week in YA land. I love young adult literature and I always have. But it has gotten me wanting to go back to high school a bit. A lot of people wouldn't relive those years for anything, but I had a great high school experience.

One of the things that I keep thinking about is how sometimes I
wonder what it would have felt like to go to public school. I wonder how my experiences would have been different. I loved going to boarding school and I wouldn't change it for anything. But there was definitely a level of freedom that I missed out on. What was your high school experience like? Did you love it? Did you hate it? Are you still in high school?

Earlier in the week I finished Wake by Lisa McMann. The title is appropriate because I was up all night reading it. I just couldn't stop!!! This is Lisa's first novel and it is a huge success. Hopefully I won't be lazy and will post more about this book later but for now I just wanted to mention i because I LOVED IT SO MUCH!!!

Shortly after I finished Wake I picked up Audrey, Wait! This book is by Robin Benway who I had the opportunity to chat with earlier this week thanks to Enchanting YA Chats! I was really enthusiastic about the book after Robin shared a whole bunch of great factoids about it. But, after just finishing Wake I had a hard time getting into Audrey, Wait! The book made up for it thought, by page 100 I was HOOKED. I haven't quite finished the book yet because I am having a massive ADD attack. But what I can tell you is that Robin is an amazing writer. She strikes the perfect balance of reality with that touch of poetry. You know those lines that are so amazing and beautiful they just smack you deep down in your soul? Well this book is full of them, and they sneak up on you making them even more poignant.

I should be posting more about these books later in the week! What have you been reading today?
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