Printed by D. Appleton and Company, Bond Street, New York, 1883. Imported by Dawson Bros Booksellers, Montreal, between 1883 and 1889. Added to the Dalhousie University Library inventory June 16, 1936. Signed out January 22, 1977. Returned May 15, 1977. Signed out January 2013. Due back May 30, 2013.
We went to the opening event at Harbourfront Friday night to hear Adrian Tomine, Seth and Yoshihiro Tatsumi. The room was full and very quickly got way stuffy. Tomine read the introduction to the new edition of 32 Stories, and expressed almost continual regret that it was back in print. He seems to be old enough to realize what an idiot he was at 20 but not old enough to find it endearing. His advice to young artists: don't publish the list of songs you listened to while drawing. Adrian, they all do it! He got a laugh while handing the Powerpoint over to Seth by noting that the Asian guy always gets stuck doing the tech support. Seth consciously overvalues the past and may be the last man on earth to use Brylcream. His presentation could have been about four stories shorter, given the rising carbon dioxide levels in the room. The voice of Tatsumi's translator murmured in the reserved seating. We absconded during the intermission, for the good of the many.
On the way up Yonge Saturday morning we got caught in a rainstorm and then doused by a passing car, but it was for the best because the rain kept the crowds away from TCAF for the first couple of hours. The Toronto Reference Library is a grand space and possibly even more awesome than it appears in Scott Pilgrim.
Douglas spoke to Meredith Gran, Kate Beaton, Tom Humberstone, John Martz, and Michael Cho who did the beautiful signage at Pages on Queen Street. John Martz has done a cartoon version of a high school year book. Seth and R Crumb have done the same sort of thing, and really it should be required drawing for all cartoonists. According to James (Rex Libris) Turner, Middleton Public Library is not located in Middleton, Nova Scotia, but he did live in Halifax, where the streets are like staircases.
Heather went with a plan to buy stuff by women and came home happy with works by Kate Beaton, Stef Lenk, Erika Moen, Caitlin Black, Miriam Libicki, Lark Pien, Claudia Davila, and Emily Holton. She recommends a back pocket budgeting system: put all the money you're willing to spend in your back pocket and once it's gone, you're done. Maybe. (Another useful measure: once your suitcase is full, you're done.)
Okay. I can't even fool myself this week. I've come out even in the CD department (a Serena Ryder swapped for a Wilco) but I'm backsliding in the book department. In the over-ambitious, what was I thinking department I've borrowed a 500 page + biography of Lenin even though I still haven't finished the Canadian CP history. Then I added in Denise Mina's latest Paddy Meehan mystery, The Last Breath and Paul Auster's latest and blessedly short novella, Travels in the Scriptorum. I rounded this all out by borrowing the 100 Mile Diet which has to be returned in seven, no make that six, days.
I'm giving myself false comfort by silently pointing out that I have actually finished Spook Country, never mind that I've been so distracted that I probably can't give a credible account of its plot or merits.
I think I was actually fairly restrained. I dropped off 4 and picked up 3. No that's not right--there was a CD too.
I've already finished the one the with most pressing promise--No More Kidney Stones-- and, as you might expect, it tells me to
Drink a lot more fluids
Cut back on tomatoes, rhubarb, chocolate, sweet potatoes, nuts, citrus rind, and a lot of other things including salty treats and beer.
And if I eat any of the semi-forbidden household staples, to drink two 12 oz glasses of water right away. Now I can do math -- that's really 3 glasses of water. I am going to to wearing a nice little path to the bathroom and you'll recognize me from the sloshing sound.
The CD was Serena Ryder's If Your Memory Serves You Well which is covers 1970s pieces. It had Douglas singing along, and for some undisclosed reason, he knows all the words to "Good Morning Starshine". I suppose it's a good thing that there are stlll surprises after 25 years. All the same, I am not prepared for an onslaught of 60s and 70s musicals which all this singing along portends. In the novel department, I picked up Gibson's Spook Country which has been prolifically reviewed. I'm 30 pages in and so far I'm enjoying it. If it goes the way of LeCarre novels by 100 pages in I'm going to be struggling to remember all the characters and subplots.
The other novel is a mystery by Christopher Brookmyre--One Fine Day in the Middle of the Night. I'd never encountered Brookmyre before but I'd read the opening lines of his most recent novel at Book World and was intrigued. If the idea of a wee Elastoplast as a cure all hadn't hooked me, the titles of his books would have: All Fun and Games Till Somebody Loses an Eye, A Big Boy Did it and Ran Away, and Boiling a Frog are all oddly familiar turns of phrases.
Next week's library run goal: return more than I take out.
This seventies stack of concrete is my regular library branch:
It's closed for renovations until mid-September October (looks like something went wrong in the reno schedule). Last year they replaced the carpets upstairs and for a couple of weeks the heady smell of glue distracted me from the rearrangement of the stacks. Not so sure what they're tackling this year but I suspect that it's self-checkout machines.
So far the reno caused a weird disruption in my schedule. I'm no longer shopping at the mall next to the library so lots of small errands are piling up and money is going unspent. More striking though is the change in my borrowing habits.
Instead of dashing in to pick up the books I've requested, now I go to the main branch to pick up requests. Not so bad, really, in terms of transit time. The problem: the main library has many, many more books and I'm hauling home 6 or 7 each week. It's murder on the back and shoulder and I'm not getting through them all. So this weekend I decided a temporary moratorium was needed: library run until I catch up a bit.
I've given up on the John Bell and have finished a stack of novels. Serendipitously the McCaughrean and the Brockmeier arrived at the same time and both feature Antarctic (sub)plots. White Darkness does a good job of teasing out adolescent female attraction to unattainable figures, in this case Lawrence Oates. Oddly I thought the non-Antarctic half of Brief History of the Dead stronger and more compelling than the re-capitulation of the Cherry-Gerrard journey to Cape Crozier.
The Deaver and the Ferris were amusements that didn't leave much of a mark.
Phoebe Gloeckner's Diary of a Teenage Girl--a mix of novel and comic--was compelling but not exactly pleasant in it's unflinching account of 1970s adolescence. It's horrors are more typical than Lynda Barry's Cruddy but there's something similar about the underlying tone.
That puts me about half way through the borrowed books and leaves me still way behind on reading what's on my own shelves.