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Saturday, July 27, 2013

Lola's Adventures: Pork By RedGoddess

Lola revels in the chaos before work. There is a level of traffic that's cosmopolitan, and the usual early birds are all in the streets. The toothless man who empties out the burned cigarettes from the public astray, every few seconds, he lets out a disturbing laugh and mumbles "who's fault is it, anyway?" 
An older Black woman, head wrapped in a colorful scarf, sweeping the front of the university theater. She always stares towards the marquee as if thinking, "What if?"
Lola walks by the pan handler sitting on a rusty bus bench, tapping both hands on her starved thighs, humming to herself. Lola smiles and hands her a crumpled dollar bill.
In the distance, Lola can smell the tiny shops, she sometimes stops by the meat market to buy pork for her grandmother to make a spicy stew. She can taste the stew in her mind.
As she approaches the hotel, she notices Tom, a proud grandfather of twins doing his morning stretches before his daughter drops off the kids. There are runners, cyclists, dog walkers, parents waiting for school buses and restless children chasing pigeons. She peers inside her favorite wine cellar with a fat golden cat in the display window. Lola inhales the sweet smell of fresh bread and coffee brewing from the hotel kitchen. On a day like this, she's exactly where she belongs.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Summer Reading List Craze by RedGoddess

It's been a rainy summer on the East Coast. When it rains, I hibernate with a good book and dream about stories of my own. This week, I read a few articles on that seem to hit a nerve with several people, at least, in the comment section. The first is by Lynn Neary, 6 choices from book critics. I have not read any of these books and I'm not sure I will anytime soon. One commentator was disappointed that there were no female author on the critic top list. Well, that statement didn't sit well with others, even one person who's a feminist. Yikes! It is a fact that all the writers chosen were male. This is such a common practice that I don't blame NPR or even the writer as she simply shared the list. This kind of fluff piece are so popular this time of year, particularly online and in magazines. The never ending list of "LIST." I haven't thought about a summer reading list since high school. I read what and when I want during my minimal leisure time. Personally, I do read a lot of female fiction and non-fiction writers by choice. I peruse through my library page for ideas,, and my friend offer recommendations. Once in a while, I attend book discussions where I learn about new books and classics people are reading/reading. Beyond that, there is no formula to selecting what to read and will definitely not choose based on the season.
The other NPR article that I found is by Tania Lombrozo where she explores what our reading list reveal about reader's personality. This one certainly caught my attention because I don't think I fit the mold or the research findings she cited. Like music, my reading list is so broad that it would pose a challenge for anyone to dissect, let alone expose something about my personality. Right now, I'm not in school but I still read a lot of academic texts and research articles on gender and media.
On the other hand, I've consciously been choosing books from local authors, partly because I'm planning to attend their talks and just like the book focus. I'm also planning to read some books on women and travel. I haven't traveled as much as I used to in my 20's and I need some inspirations for the next spot to visit. The first two books on my list are: Tales from a female Nomad by Rita Golden Gelman. I almost borrowed Eat, Love & Pray from the public library but changed my mind. Instead I'm listening to the soundtrack of the movie. I would love to visit all the places in the movie but I have to choose one at a time as I don't have the luxury to pack up like the author (Eat, Love & Pray) without losing my day job. So for now, I'll dive into the personal stories of a few travel writers while I figure out where to go next. Tell me what you're reading this week. Do you have any travel plans in the next few months? I want to hear about it! Send me a comment after reading the post.