Moments in time captured with various odd symbols referred to in the lingua franca as letters.

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

First Post

The New Year is here. It brought with it large explosions that lasted up to around four in the morning and then piles and piles of dirty snow and the wrappers and leftovers of the fireworks. The city, of course, is the one who will have to clean the whole thing up like they do every year. I think this is probably one of those ironic moments in Germany, a land so proud about being clean: that on New Year’s eve and day its ok to litter. Going to the baker in the morning was like walking through a bar just after they closed: half empty bottles and cups lined the street.

My first book of 2011 I actually started in 2010. It was Phillip Roth’s “I Married a Communist.” It was only the second Roth novel that I have ever read, but I will admit that it won’t be the last. While at times the story line was bland, the characters themselves kept the thing afloat and all the insights into the McCarthy era were extremely interesting and irritating at the same time. It will forever be one of those classic ideas to me that a country can call itself the greatest on earth and then turn around and tell its own people what they have to believe in order to be permitted to work.


That’s the thing I want to point out as we begin the new year: that our end results or present versions of old projects often have little to do with their origins and history. The original United States allowed for slavery and gave no votes to women, and yet if you speak to some people, they would give up everything they had to go back to that time of constitutional purity. I am guessing that most of these people have no background in American history beyond the third grade.


The book list for 2011 will keep the books that weren’t finished from last year as well.


1. I Married a Communist by Phillip Roth (finished)

2. Freedom by Jonathan Franzen (considering buying this after all the reviews it got)

3. Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer (non-fiction)

4. Going After Cacciato by Tim O´Brien

5. The Green House by Mario Vargas Lhosa (hard to find in English)

6. Grimms Wörter by Günter Grass

7. Buddha’s Little Finger by Victor Pelevin (Currently reading in German)

Finally an apology for today’s post, I know it isn’t that great or fiery or whatever, but it’s the first one of the year so it needed to be gotten out of the way.


First picture of the year was a great success as well: Quiche with tomatoes, Asiago cheese, and spinach.


3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Any New Year's resolutions that you want to post for the world to see?

Joel

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