Sunday, February 22, 2009

Somebody Buy Me This Banza! Please

Somebody buy me this banza! Pretty please.

And for a pretty please please take a listen to this beautiful one of a kind instrument, a cross between a Persian kemancheh and an African gourd banjo, a banza. This unique instrument, the Yayli banza, is bowed or plucked and features a goatskin head. Check out the link and listen to the youtube videos.

Oh please, oh please, poetry lessons for life. Opening bids start at $900.

Labels: , ,

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Fun With Blog Buddies: My BBC List of Read Books

From C. Dale Young via Peter Pereira via Teresa Ballard:

Apparently the BBC reckons most people will have only read 6 of the 100 books here.

1) Look at the list and put an 'x' after those you have read.
2) Add a '+' to the ones you LOVE.
3) Star (*) those you plan on reading.
4) Tally your total at the bottom.

1 Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen x
2 The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien x+
3 Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte x
4 Harry Potter series - JK Rowling x
5 To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee x+
6 The Bible- x
7 Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte x
8 Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell x+
9 His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman
10 Great Expectations - Charles Dickens x
11 Little Women - Louisa M Alcott x+
12 Tess of the D’Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy x
13 Catch 22 - Joseph Heller x+
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare x+
15 Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier x
16 The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien x+
17 Birdsong - Sebastian Faulks
18 Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger x+
19 The Time Traveller’s Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
20 Middlemarch - George Eliot x
21 Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell x+
22 The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald x+
23 Bleak House - Charles Dickens x
24 War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy x+
25 The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy x
26 Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh x
27 Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky x+
28 Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck x+
29 Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll x+
30 The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame x
31 Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy x+
32 David Copperfield - Charles Dickens x
33 Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis x
34 Emma - Jane Austen x
35 Persuasion - Jane Austen x
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - CS Lewis
37 The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini *
38 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres
39 Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden x
40 Winnie the Pooh - AA Milne x
41 Animal Farm - George Orwell x+
42 The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
43 One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez x+
44 A Prayer for Owen Meaney - John Irving
45 The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
46 Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery x
47 Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy x
48 The Handmaid’s Tale - Margaret Atwood x+
49 Lord of the Flies - William Golding x+
50 Atonement - Ian McEwan
51 Life of Pi - Yann Martel
52 Dune - Frank Herbert x
53 Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons
54 Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen x
55 A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth
56 The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon *
57 A Tale Of Two Cities - Charles Dickens x
58 Brave New World - Aldous Huxley x+
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon
60 Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez x
61 Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck x+
62 Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov x
63 The Secret History - Donna Tartt
64 The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold *
65 Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas x
66 On The Road - Jack Kerouac x
67 Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy
68 Bridget Jones’s Diary - Helen Fielding
69 Midnight’s Children - Salman Rushdie *
70 Moby Dick - Herman Melville x
71 Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens x
72 Dracula - Bram Stoker x
73 The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett x+
74 Notes From A Small Island - Bill Bryson
75 Ulysses - James Joyce x+
76 The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath x+
77 Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
78 Germinal - Emile Zola x
79 Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray x
80 Possession - AS Byatt
81 A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens x
82 Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
83 The Color Purple - Alice Walker x+
84 The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro
85 Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert x
86 A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry
87 Charlotte’s Web - EB White x+
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Alborn
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle x
90 The Faraway Tree Collection - Enid Blyton
91 Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad x+
92 The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint-Exupery x+
93 The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
94 Watership Down - Richard Adams x
95 A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole x
96 A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute
97 The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas x
98 Hamlet - William Shakespeare x
99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl x
100 Les Miserables - Victor Hugo x

(98 is obviously a trick question)

I've read 82 out of 100 of these books, and there's only one I haven't heard of, so, not bad for a lit prof, eh?

Monday, February 09, 2009

Lorna Dee's Best Random Thing On The Net: Clinton's Lamb Chop & A Work of Mirth

Hey, how very cool. Jeffry the ThingMeister has selected one of my 25 Random Things About Me as the "Best on the Web in today's entry: Just Plain Funny: Today's Best Random Things Stories.

Here's a little piece I wrote last year that tells more of the story behind the factoid. Enjoy!

A Work of Mirth

I miss his laugh the most. I miss making him laugh, the way I could make him laugh daily. I miss that strange power of our mutual mirth. Hearing it again brought back our first time. He'd picked me up at the bus stop near his house and drove me through the city-suburb maze to get there. On the way I told him my story about meeting Clinton. How we were both the last two at the banquet buffet table, both former poor kids, now laden with baby lamb shanks (my vegan downfall) and delicate cookies. He held a lamb chop in one meaty fist and a tiny plate piled high like a mini earthworks sculpture. He gazed longingly at the cookies, set down his plate after trying to hold it along with the chop, and, not seeing any room on his plate for the cookies, grabbed a huge handful and stuffed them in the pocket of his expensive suit (no cares for dry cleaning bills with Bill); and then he noticed me, also still eating, and sheepishly saluted me with his lamb chop. The President with a pocket full of cookies saluting me with a greasy lamb chop! The Secret Service, tugging at his sleeve and talking on their phones at once. "Yes, he's on his way..." "Why don't they just wheel the whole table into his office?" I thought. "I'm sure he's done worse."

It was funny the way I told it to him. In real life it was surreal, or like a skit on Saturday Night Live, the one where he jogs into the local Burger King and asks the guy at the counter, "Are you going to eat those fries?" And grabbing a handful. Yup, someone who knows Bill well wrote that skit. He had to pull over, he was laughing so hard. We were laughing until the tears made it hard for him to drive. Every word I said just seemed to him to be funnier than the last. That was the way it was with us. When we did talk; me, making him laugh. He thanked me, after he had composed himself enough to drive again. A widower, he said it felt good to laugh again. He hadn't laughed for years, thought he'd forgotten how. After that, I considered it a wifely duty.

Yesterday, on the phone, our easy connection. I don't remember what I said, telling some story or other, that brought back that laugh, a huge wheezing guffaw that made it hard for him to catch his breath. We laughed the entire difficult conversation (a finalized divorce, a house that still needs to be sold, some form needing a notarized signature) - an hour of laughter, catching up on the year. I remember what I'd written to someone: I'd like to find that again. Someone who gets my jokes and vice versa. Someone for whom I am both vice and verses. Someone I can make cry with my laughter. Nice work if you can get it. And, anything but logical. I want to dance in that surreal reel again. What, with the real realm, hey, sometimes you just gotta laugh.

Got any?

Lorna Dee Cervantes
Amazon Honor System Click Here to Pay Learn More
$223,693,000,000 The Most Expensive Impeachment In History!
Cost of the War in Iraq
To see more details, click here.
Radical Women of Color Bloggers
Join | List | Previous | Next | Random | Previous 5 | Next 5 | Skip Previous | Skip Next