Old Sock Drawer

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#063: An update! Really!

August 16th, 2009 by Mary Leong

Currently listening to: “Dance Anthem of the 80s” – Regina Spektor

I emerge from my self-imposed hermitude (?! is that a word? I don’t really care, because it looks rather wicked) to dash off a brief – and haphazardly thrown-together – blog post. Self-imposed hermitude is not due to the usual anti-social tendencies. Instead, it’s due to the French Club website that I’m trying to throw together, to no real avail. *insert string of Québécois words inappropriate for this medium* But on to other cheerier topics, and the apparent schizophrenic nature of this update! Wheeheee.

Welcome, new additions to the Blog Squad! Welcome to the wordsmithing and general madness! Feel free to talk to any of us – we don’t bite, I promise. Unless we are in starving university mode. Speaking of biting…

The Vancouver Zombie Walk yesterday was craaazzzaaaaay. Watch for my Ubyssey article on it…yes, the one that I have yet to start writing. I’ve been playing back the interviews, trying to do transcripts and such, and I officially hate my recorded voice, which is vapid and annoyingly high-pitched. Please slap me if I sound like that in real life.

Lest this entry be all pointless prattle…
I’ve just finished Empire of Illusion by Chris Hedges, a splendid treatise on our modern-day addiction to one-minute soundbites, mistaking sensationalism for news, scripted wrestling for sport, Twitter for literature. He rants about the downfall of literacy and the death of critical thinking, amongst other things. I won’t spoil it for you, but it’s really a fantastic book, and I’m definitely going to check out his other books (When Atheism Becomes Religion: America’s New Fundamentalists, and American Fascists). Suffice to say, if you’ve ever wanted to know why those who hold power in society do, well, there is an excellent chapter on the Ivy League, and our modern plutocracy.

That being said, I chanced upon a book at work today, Idiot America, which seemed like an excellent complement to Empire of Illusion. I have yet to begin it, but it looks like a biting criticism of ignorance, and people’s pride in remaining ignorant…a fact I can’t quite argue with, given the emergence of fake town hall protests and the like in the States…but that is a whole different story entirely, which I shall not proceed into, lest it turn into another massive rant!

I shall elaborate on Idiot America after I am done with the book; perhaps you all have some views on the abovementioned you’d like to share? I would love to hear what you’ve got to think on the subject! And keep the book recommendations coming, guys. I really appreciate them! :D

Tags:   · · 10 Comments

10 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Eastwood Aug 16, 2009 at 10:32 pm

    Yay, an update. I’m suddenly self-conscious of the fact that I haven’t written since June.

    “Hermitude” is a good word — there’s a bit of a Bartleby-emerging-of-out-his-hermitage ring to it.

  • 2 Carman Lam Aug 17, 2009 at 1:24 pm

    Hey Mary! I love that song by Regina Spektor – the whole album is so fantastic! Glad to see a fellow fan in the midst.

  • 3 Julian Aug 17, 2009 at 2:42 pm

    “Correct” conjugation is highly overrated. Being a bastard language, I find it highly suspect that such restriction is even present in English. I believe that if the word aids the flow of the work enough, such as hermitude (again, a most mellifluous choice!),while in no way hindering its understanding, it should be accepted without second thought.

  • 4 Mary Leong Aug 17, 2009 at 10:50 pm

    ARGH I was in the process of writing wordy replies to all your lovely comments when my computer decided to shut the window!

    @Eastwood: Bartleby is an excellent name for someone undergoing hermitude. I ought to change my name to Bartleby for the next few weeks as the basement nerd habits continue.

    @Carman: Oh, Regina Spektor is absolutely brill! Her new album is so delightful. Yay, fellow fans!

    @Julian: One of the greatest things about the English language is its incredibly fluid and mutable nature. The constant development of the language, be it through the acquisition of new things and phenomena which need to be named, or through the shift in meanings of previously-existent words, is always fascinating to watch. Case in point: one of my favourite is the word “adultlescent”, referring to adults who behave like children. Whee hee.

  • 5 Julian Aug 18, 2009 at 8:42 pm

    You are exceptionally eloquent in your response; I anticipate a year of similarly enjoyable output from yourself. Well met, Ms Leong.

  • 6 Tyler Aug 22, 2009 at 1:36 pm

    Those books sound interesting :) I’ll definitly check them out :)

  • 7 Mary Leong Aug 24, 2009 at 10:52 pm

    @Julian: Likewise!

    @Tyler: Do let me know what you think of them! It’ll be a fascinating discussion, methinks.

  • 8 Laurie Marie Sep 7, 2009 at 11:01 pm

    Since I can’t sleep I decided to wander back into your blog-posts. Which means, by inspiration, I am now writing one myself.

    PS – I also hate my recorded voice. I blame the recorder. I do not look forward to my Radio class this term- an entire class of having to listen to my voice? Ick.

    much love,

    PPS – The Intercamp crew (possibly EVERYONE) is getting a party bus with the Gateway to go to CUP in Kelowna. Are you in (I hope the answer is yes!)


  • 9 Mary Leong Sep 8, 2009 at 12:34 am

    @Laurie: I would LOVE to go to CUP this year again!! Ah, good memories. Crazy times. Tons of wacky writers. Ridiculous amounts of shenanigans. What more could one ask for?

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