Sunday, November 25, 2007

Gene Wolfe's "The Book Of The New Sun"

I've gust finished a cycle of books called The Book Of The New Sun by Gene Wolfe. They were started in 1981, and I have never heard of them whatsoever until I stumbled onto one as a staff-pick at the Orem Public Libtrary http://lib.orem.org/ To admit the series has astonished me would be an understatement. Instead, as the author doubtless hoped, an entire world opened itself to me. It is both ancient and new, terrible and kind, symmetrical and incongruent.

The premise is one of a firsthand telling--a young man is benig brought up in a guild. He is part of a declining civilization, and the sun is dying. It is Earths future, some million years ahead of our time. Our people have reached out beyond the stars, yet decayed and lost that ability for all but a very few. Instead, our civilization has deteriorated to something hybrid--a mix of the old and the new.

I won't bore you further with more explanations and allusions, but I will say this. Wolfe has woven a tapestry of words that holds its own along side the Bayeaux.

Well done Gene! Thank you for the gift of your words...

-Jay

Friday, November 23, 2007

Up To Date

I ran into Nate Harris at Walmart on Wednesday--Dan and I were getting some stuff for Thanksgiving, and I paused while a tall guy was leaning over to pick some groceries out of his cart while balancing a toddler on his hip. It was Nate.

We talked for ten minutes while we stood in front of the automatic doors, directly in front of the empty carts, directly in front of the carts the customers wanted. I realize now that we must've been in the way, but no one commented on it. And we talked.

It was nice to catch up, I haven't seen Nate since Paul's Birthday party some three years ago up South Fork. It was the same old Nate, and yet not. I think time does that to us--keeps us the same boys we were, yet adds to us. Makes us more responsible, develops us, makes us older.

Dan and I said our goodbyes, Nate and Landon headed for home, and Dan and I to brave the crowds in the store for pie ingrdients and potato chips.

Thanksgiving was nice, we had it at Anna and Darren's house in Mapleton. Their house is enormous, and I was able to retire with a book to the basement and a blanket and enjoy several quiet moments of tyrptophan induced reading. My two mobile babes ran and played with their cousins, the littlest slept upstairs where Melissa worked knitting a rug. The sounds of Hyrum and Madolin playing with the other cousins are fresh enough now, a night later, that I still can hear them.

Today has been thankfully quiet. I've tidied up my case backlog here at work, and enjoyed reading some two hundred fifty pages. I will admit that I turned to my ipod to drown out the conversation of my co-workers (which I find exasperating as trhey debate round and round in cirlces), the music tending tot he softer tones--The Tanhall Weavers, Enya, symphonic.

And now I begin the last fifteen minutes of my shift. Two more days of work, hopefully quiet and passing as this one was.

The title alluded to e catching up on news, as Nate requested in part of our conversation, so I'll stab at it once more. Melissa and Miles are doing well, albeit Melissa and I are sleeping less having to adjust to Miles' two-hour appetite. We are excited to have our family grow, and are still adjusting to the idea of being outnumbered. Hyrumis drawing/cutting/taping everything he can get his hands on. Madolin is fast becoming the princess of the manor, and absolutely loves to copy everything her older brother does. Both kids enjoy holding Hyrum, and often ask to do so. He is going to ahev to fight for a cratyon in our house, but he will be loved by his siblings.

Work is going well, I have been here four months. I have also re-started selling plasma at PCCI, behind Sizzler in Orem. It's nice to have some cash on hand and see a movie while doing it :)

Time to go home and then to a movie. Looks like we're going to watch Enchanted. The animated/live action movie about fairy tale folk exiled to the real world.

Funny, but it feels like today should be Monday, what with yesterday being a day where the family all got together. It was really nice to see them all in the same house, it's been months since. We all may not agree with the same politics, religion, or what have you--but we all love one another. And all of us being together for dinner is the best thing I could have asked for.

-Jay

Friday, November 09, 2007

A Jot and Tittle of Titles

Books I've read in the past few weeks:

Twilight by Stephenie Meyer
New Moon by Stephenie Meyer
Eclipse by Stephenie Meyer
Beowulf
Eragon
by Christopher Paolini
Eldest by Christopher Paolini

I am excited for the next of the Eragon books (called the Inheritance Cycle, cycle for the fac that it consists of four volumes). I will have to wait until fall of 08 for that. Thankfully Goodkinds book Confessor is arriving at the Orem Public Library (comlpiments of my own request) on or about the 20th. It is released on the 13th of this month.

Perhaps the family will go by the O.P.L. tonight and see if we can find some new titles. I've heard about the Elfstones of Shanara series, as well as Dragonlance.

Any other book series people are really liking?

-Jay

Thursday, November 01, 2007

He is here...Miles Daniel Blair.

Melissa and I are loving this time with our new baby boy. He is a cute little blonde thing, blue eyes like mom and dad and bro and sis. He's got my lungs, mom's fingers, Hyrum's nose, Maddy's haircolor, and all our hearts.

We're still adjusting to the new routine. Top that off by Maddy being sick with the croup Hyrum had last week, and the receipe adds up to some sleepless nights. But the changes bring new opportunities to us as a family.

Right now I'm pretty tired. Thankfully work is kinda slow. I don't have any picts posted, but check out Melissa's blog and see the cute lil guy!

Later,
Jay