Sunday, October 28, 2007

Coming soon...

What could be better than a musical -- given the subject matter, I won't say "musical comedy" -- starring Johnny Depp? These are truly a few of my favorite things...

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Fun stuff abounds...

I tend to use the Internet for relatively serious purposes. Listening to music and keeping up with my blogs are about as fun as it gets -- and even those activities often carry some work-oriented or educational connotation. Listening to Radio Paradise or Sur La Route, I feel good about improving my musical culture. And who knows -- maybe I'll run into a song I can use in class.

Then there's blogging -- I try to be relaxed about it, especially on And So Forth. But the fact that I am a "slightly-published" writer is never far from my mind. Whatever I post is out there for anybody and everybody to peruse: a rather daunting concept.

So with all this latent seriousness lurking behind each blog post, it's a pleasure to dive into a fun, silly subject: cereal boxes.

Did you know there is a whole virtual world out there devoted to the packaging of our daily childhood breakfast food?

Topher's Breakfast Cereal Guide focuses on cereal-box characters. Do you remember Count Chocula? I do now, but he sure hadn't crossed my mind for a few years. (OK, let's say for about thirty.)

If Topher's doesn't pour out enough grainy information for you, there's The Boxtop, a "seasonal cereal net newsletter written for cereal enthusiasts."

Yes, readers, this is the type of thing you can find when you spend a bit too much time on the Internet, as I am doing this morning.

Sorry, I've got to wrap up this post. I promised my daughter I'd make her something for breakfast...

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Sunday Scribblings: My Dream Job

My dream job is intellectual, yet involves a lot of contact with people.

My dream job is extremely creative, yet not artistic.

My dream job involves speaking in public and has a certain performance aspect to it, but includes some special quiet time too.

My dream job is objective-driven. One must constantly strive for success -- but not the financial kind.

My dream job changes constantly: with the years, with the time of day, and with the seasons.

I have been working at my dream job for 25 years now. Not all of my friends and acquaintances were pleased with my choice.

"We always thought you'd make something out of yourself, Betty," announced a high school friend when she found out what I was doing. (Ironically, after a number of years in various sales positions, she is now doing the same job as I am. I guess she got tired of making something out of herself.)

My dream job is my current job, and it was my first "career" job. If--and only if -- I can keep my energy up, it will be my last.

I am a teacher.

(This post was inspired by the Sunday Scribblings subject of "First Job, Worst Job, Dream Job." I'm sure this will be a really interesting scribble, so click by and take a look at the other posts.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

The Death of a Blog

As some of you may remember, last summer I started a new blog on Typepad. I was intrigued by the subject -- the title of the blog was "My European Scrapblog." I had hoped to write up all sorts of news and cultural snippets related to Europe.

I still think I have a good concept here, but I just don't have the time to keep up with it.

So I killed "My European Scrapblog." Since it was on Typepad and I was paying good money for it to sit there, I actually had to send it to blog heaven.

No regrets. I'm really getting into writing for La France Profonde at the moment, and am even starting some historical research into the Aveyron department to beef up that blog's content.

One thing I've learned about blogging is that it's all about change...

Saturday, October 06, 2007

A Few Words About Reading

What a nice surprise! Matthew of Common Misadventures tagged me for an interesting meme about reading. Then, of course, I put off writing it for a few weeks because it actually took some thinking. But here goes...

My Reading: I used to be a voracious reader. When I was in high school, I read at least a book a week. I devoured as many of the classics as I could get my hands on, including things I would never read now (like Dostoevsky!) Despite thoughts of majoring in history or political science in college, I ended up majoring in English Lit -- so plenty more reading ensued.
Once I got out into the working world, though, I turned away from the classics. I pick one up occasionally, but I really prefer to read high-quality but easily readable recent fiction.

Although I read French fluently, I don't read in French that often. I think reading is a good way for me to keep in touch with my native language, and I also find much current French fiction soupy and too self-consciously intellectual. I will make an exception for one of the five books on my list below, though. I also know that I have just made a sweeping generalization, and anyone who wants to suggest a list of great recent French novels to read can feel free to do so!

Total number of books owned: Probably several hundred, but I don't buy all that many books -- other than cookbooks, which are a guilty pleasure! I had quite a collection of classics sitting back home in the USA but got rid of them a few summers ago.

Last book read and bought: The last book I read was Under the Tuscan Sun by Frances Mayes. I enjoyed the cultural observations, but had to skim over the endless details about house renovation.
The last book I bought was The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami -- but I haven't read it yet.

Five meaningful books: Not necessarily favorites, just books that have meant a lot to me and that come to mind...

Les Jeux Sont Faits by Jean-Paul Sartre

Ensemble, C'est Tout by Anna Gavalda

Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingslover

Now for who to tag -- how about the last three people who have commented on And So Forth?
That would be Rachelle, Christina and Katie...