Saturday, January 30, 2010

Autobiography of Dodie Smith, Volume One

In Volume of the Autobiography of Dodie Smith, Look Back With Love, I find highlight pertinant to the Tacoma Historical emphasis of our current Tacoma Reads Together Childhood visits to relatives of Dodie Smith on her father's side brought her to the brewery her uncle managed - she describes one experience with riding on the brewery wagon horses - and I reflect on Tacoma's Brewery District. A question arises - were there stables with the early brewery, which began in Tacoma in 1900? I continue to read through these remembrances of her childhood in Manchester, England, while scanning ahead a bit to see when she was writing I Capture the Castle, and 101 Dalmations, which featured Pongo the dog detective.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Four Volume Autobiography of Dodie Smith

Today I picked up the four volume autobiography of Dodie Smith from the library's Interlibrary Loan, which I mentioned two blog posts back. Winter Reading with Tacoma Reads Together was announced at a Tacoma City Council Meeting at least two weeks ago, according to a librarian who answered my question about it. So it is no secret. The library has yet to start its large hype. For Fahrenheit 451 there were posters in every window of the downtown library. The classic by Ray Bradbury came to mind when I was up late reading a mystery about book theft and feminist mysteries. At points such stories are quite scarey.

Anyone can find out what our book will be. So it is silly that I even dislike discussing this in a blog entry before the library starts up the hype. Gosh, what classic 1941 mystery film was standard at fests and concerts in the late 1960's? What film starts with the unforgettable image of the old lost statuette? Um.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

At First Lutheran Church Yesterday

The service bulletin included an insert about Aid to the Haiti area, with most of the opening greeting about details - we learned there are about twelve Lutheran congregations in Haiti, not many. The Lutheran aid has gone through a partnership with other religious groups. It is certainly true that many videos show effort devoted to organizing and placing important priorities first. First Lutheran Church's web site is listed at the links on the right side of the blog.
It is one week since the terrible devastation today.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Winter Reading

Another winter with soup on the stove while there are books to read – there is all rain right now and reading works, as long as there are chances to spend time outdoors.

Meg Cabot – Airhead (a young adult novel)

The title character wakes with a brain transplant after an accident. It becomes a less empty idea when medical professionals explain that the law defines life by the heartbeat, not by the mentality. Although all her memory is about her life as an Advanced Placement Student, her legal identity is about the stranger she sees in the mirror.

(It does enter my mind that she sees the stranger through the stranger's eyes. The eyes are a portal to the brain, eyes have cells that are linked to the brain and to thought. One can wonder why the eyes of the stranger's body perceive the self without recognition.)

However, I only skimmed the teen novel. I have also been glancing through some texts about education and wondering if any analyses studied the eventual long-term lives of people relative to the academic, vocational, or general track that education authorities physically placed them in.

The Airhead teen novel makes me realize that the law that prioritizes existence as being about the body is a challenge to education. Education can track – move the students around according to evidence about their minds - as a way to emphasize itself, Education, or to reach all the students with their message about the importance of the mind.

Dodie Smith – New Moon With The Old

This is an endearing novel that I reread recently while glancing through some texts about education and wondering about the destinies of those students. The two sisters and two brothers whose father has left them in the advisory of a live-in secretary, newly hired, in the face of a tainted financial ruin (he must leave England) – must find work. The novel becomes a study of variations on the idea of work as a paid companion in the context of England's wonderful wealth of interesting old buildings. I remember loving one or two of the buildings in this novel very much.

It seems there is a four-volume autobiography by Dodie Smith. I put it on Inter Library Loan Request.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

First Night's Fire Clock

The bucket of pellets mechanism see-sawed up and down aflame all through the evening. The front of the clock was decorated with meditations about Time.
When midnight arrived the Tiger figure at the top of the clock was unveiled. As this tiger image, a cut-out of metal, flamed with fire in the midnight dark, one could only think, very lovely.
First Night was an evening with Installations near the Pantages on Broadway in Tacoma. There were music and dance presentations at the Pantages Lobby, the Broadway Rehearsal Room, the Theater on the Square, The Pythian Temple, at the Rialto.At the Rhodes Building were free H1N1 shots.


This bamboo tripod became one of two supports for the image 2010, set afire at midnight.
At midnight several paper trees with paper wishes attached were set on fire and bits of the wishes floated around in the air.


How luminous the tiger puppet's paws and head appeared as he ceremoniously danced out of the old graffiti-art-lined brick and cement parking garage on Broadway.
How puppeteer attendants carried along glowing luminaries.
How behind them came several small bands playing music and drums.