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Holy *%&$*. Busiest week ever in my whole life, I think, between winding up commitments at work for a grant-funded project that ends Nov. 30th and (on my own time) two freelance jobs, one editing, one indexing, not to mention the usual housekeeping duties. Made my usual 4am delivery of the index (note to self: polish time management skills). Now indulging/rewarding self with Cupcake chardonnay and a positively decadent eclair. Ooh the chocolate...ooh the pastry...ooh the creamy puddingy stuff in the middle. Nom nom nom.

Earlier today I tore through No. 10 in the Sandman series, The Kindly Ones. Features one, or three, or possibly six or nine, of my favorite characters depending on how you look at it. There are the Erinyes, the Furies, but he conflates them with the Fates (Clotho, Lachesis and Atropos) as well as with the Celtic triple goddess of maiden, mother and crone. The speech patterns of the three suggest that Gaimain read, and enjoyed, Lloyd Alexander's Chronicles of Prydain. The Fates appear in at least two of Alexander's books as Orddu, Orwen and Orgoch; they use terms such as "My duck," "My gosling," "My little tadpole," and one of them -- Orgoch, I think -- is always eating something unpleasant. The same goes for the Kindly Ones: they use similar endearments and one of them has a dead mouse for tea. As usual, Gaiman leaves me speechless at the immensity of his talent. The books are so rich, there are so many tales hinted at in passing; you whiz past, carried on by the main story arc, but constantly brushed by wings and tailfeathers of other things, glimpses of myth and legend and fairy tales, saying, "Hold on, what about -- and wait, what was that there? And...oh, that one, I want to know about that!" He's brilliant.

To balance it out, I'm also reading about the most conventional, tidy, suburban, boring person every invented: Sinclair Lewis' Babbit. I can't stand him already, I hope he turns out to be better than he forebodes at present. Mostly he makes me think of the line from Auntie Mame: "Should she know that I think you've turned into one of the most beastly, bourgeouis, Babbity little snobs on the Eastern seaboard? Or will you be able to make that quite clear without any help from me?"


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Nov. 21st, 2010 05:09 am (UTC)
"Cupcake Chardonnay" is sending all kinds of contradictory ideas to my brain. I am uncertain if it makes me want to reach for a wine glass, or go on a frantic, desperate search for be-frostinged goodness at 12 in the morning.
Nov. 23rd, 2010 02:11 am (UTC)
I know, it's very conflict-y. Fermented sugar or straight sugar?? Ah, the dilemma...
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Nov. 23rd, 2010 02:15 am (UTC)
LOL! I love that Neil Gaiman piece. "I'll tell you all about sluggling later, Whateley. Pointless, though. You lack wnaisngh'ang. Although perhaps badminton equipment would do almost as well..." I have no idea what he's talking about but it makes me laugh :)

Will have to track down the King in Yellow. It's on librivox so maybe I'll listen to it at work - thanks!
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