Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Upcoming Banned Book Week 2012

Yes, I know, dear world, it has been a while since I have posted. I've been so busy with studying for the GRE that I've neglected people...and it doesn't help to find out from my sister that when she calls my number, it says it's disconnected. :/ Right now, I don't have the time to deal with it, no one calls me anyways. Oh, my sister calls the VOIP phone (just in case people might find it rude that I don't care if my sister calls - she knows how to get a hold of me!! :D)

As of today, 3 weeks until the GRE. Oh, sigh.

As for more exciting news! The Banned Book Week Display is up!! I was so thrilled to be doing it since I am a firm believer in not censoring books.

For the book list, I used Radcliffe's Rival Top 100 list (ALA approved). ALA (American Library Association) does have a section of each year's most challenged books. No surprise that this year, we see The Hunger Games series, The Color of Earth and AGAIN To Kill a Mocking Bird. Really?

September was also Medieval Month, so the left side is our tribute to the Medieval Ages. The right are the banned books, I chose to display.

Since the popular books were checked out, I decided to choose books that most kids and parenting adults would know best from their childhood. Our demographic is mostly the elderly and young families with small kids - nothing in between. We all love and adore Winnie The Pooh and Charlotte's Web - yes, they are banned books. Us geekier types may have begun our reading world with Tolkien (hence the Fellowship of the Ring is up there [part 1 of the Lord of the Rings Trilogy - for those who did not know]). Geez, I was 13 when I first read Tolkien's books! And I waited to take a picture until 1984 was found! I was sad that we did not have Heart of Darkness or Naked Lunch (I personally own these). Of course, I could not leave out Schindler's List or The Color Purple.

Seriously, we do not understand how luckily we are to be able to read books and enjoy them. We are so blessed to be able to browse through a library when in some countries, you cannot even browse or sit and enjoy the AC while looking through magazines. Literacy is not an enemy. It gives us the option to learn about something and then make a decision whether or not to agree or disagree with it.

I was surprised when I realized that the cutest kids book, The Hungry Caterpillar, is a banned book?! Seriously, people need to lighten up. We need to be proud that we have the opportunity to be literate and be able to enjoy books. Knowledge is power! READ!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Flying Feet - Walking, running & Charlotte

The best part of the week was Friday night. Even though my back was sore I decided to make the absolute best of my day. My optimism waned around the late afternoon when no matter how I sat, the pulling throb in my lower right where my little bulges press, was painful. It was a busy day. Work in the morning, my husband convocation at the college (it was silly since he’s in his early 30s.) which lasted until about 3pm.

Rain fell from the sky as we went to go and pick up my mom’s truck and I think just the combination of being on my feet and getting in and out of vehicles was just too much. Finally at home, light stretching and resting prepared me for the best part of my evening, my walk!

I always get excited for walking, mostly because it’s my “me” time. But Friday rejuvenated older feelings and sensations that was dormant since my injuries.

I had to run across the street to get to the park and instead of stopping once I hit the other sidewalk, I wanted to continue. (Oh! I didn’t. I don’t need my flare to return.) Those 10 seconds of flying over the asphalt was freeing. Now I understood why Charlotte loves to run.

Charlotte, my MC, when I first developed her, the first thing that popped into my mind was that she’s a runner (mostly because she’s has too much energy). Back then, going up the stairs for me took some effort because of my weight. Never in a million years, would I ever think how amazing running could ever be. As I wrote about her, I tried to imagine what it was like to run but I found it hard to describe. As I lost a bunch load of weight, before my injuries, I had about a year to really understand what the big deal about running was.

It’s freedom from gravity. Its pain fuels you to keep going. The adrenaline rush that burns through your veins is like a drug. Your mind wanders to this zen-like place once you’ve balanced your breathing and focused on making sure you step and push off correctly. In running, getting to the end is great, but it’s the journey there that’s amazing.

These days, I revel in my power walks, having small moments where I get the similar sensation to running. Usually about 30 minutes in, the pain goes away and my back is warm and flexible. You want to sweat because it cools your skin. 

I feel like Charlotte is with me when I walk, egging me on as she waits up ahead. She tells me to keep moving, not to be sedate. When she’s doing her cool down, that’s when she speaks to me, telling me where she wants the story to go.

Then it was yoga after I returned followed by a bit of belly dancing – something I hadn’t done in a while. I didn’t push myself. I felt like doing it, missing the time when I had the freedom to really express myself.