Sunday, November 23, 2008

The Sunday Salon - The Father of America and Some Vampires

It's been a busy week, sexy readers! I'm officially in the home stretch of my graduate classes and the basic writing classes I'm teaching. I guess I could safely characterize this period of time as the calm before the grading storm. I'll have boatloads of final projects to grade shortly. Pray for my soul!

In other news, I've sort of stayed away from the 'net the last few days. I check in on the blog, Twitter a bit, but I've been diving into the books and it's paying off!

I finished my second book for the U.S. Presidents Reading Project. Only 42 more presidents to go!

I'm really glad I'm doing this. I was fascinated by this book about George Washington by James MacGregor Burns and Susan Dunn. I'm pretty certain I learned most of the stuff in this book in school at some point, but the details fade with time. Although, quite honestly, the parts about Washington being a little self-centered and obsessed with his lack of education, as well as his preoccupation with creating a respectable image (military, political, and presidential) were probably left out of my studies. Textbooks, the ones I used in school anyway, were a little more flattering to the men in charge than was necessarily realistic. I like learning about the presidents' flaws, quirks, and failures right alongside their victories. Washington was a great one, no doubt, for the precedents he set and for the life he breathed into the office. The presidency was a very shady, nebulous office before he was unanimously voted in by his colleagues. I was also really fascinated by the birth of our two-party system. What a scandal back in the day!

I'm really glad I decided to undertake this project! I feel a little smarter for the undertaking.

In other news, after I saw the Twilight movie I was gripped with an undying (ha!) need to re-read the series. I started the first book last night, and ripped through 100 pages before bed. It's been a while, so I've forgotten a lot of the finer details. I'm finding Edward and Bella just as compelling as I did the first time, although I might have slightly less patience for Bella's bellowing about how gorgeous he is. Although, thinking about Robert Pattinson...maybe it won't bother me much at all! Rawwr! I feel like such a cougar. The guy is all of 22 or 23. Oh well! Hot is hot.

And he's a musician! Aren't all the actor/models you know aspiring musicians, too? As much as I hate to admit it, I really like his voice even if he is a little growly and incoherent. You can listen to some of this music here, including my favorite..."Never Think."

Coming soon: an in-depth chronicle of Andi's 2008 Experiment. Some of you may remember that I joined up a couple of years ago. I'm trying again. We'll see how it goes! It's an adventure so far.


  1. One of the Cybil nominees for nonfiction picture books is about George a farmer! I see Washington in an entirely different way now.

  2. Oh fun!!!!! You know I love me some picture books. What's the title?

  3. I have to confess, we're buying the Twilight soundtrack just to get the Pattinson songs. Gah. I hate saying that. Makes me feel like a young fangirl.

  4. I am really like the idea of this presidential challenge. I migt just have to check this challenge out. Have a great week!

  5. When I was reading "His Excellency", I kept thinking there were parts of Washington's life where he was a little like Forrest Gump. He just happened to be there when something historic happened. :-)

    As for actors wanting to be musicians, the reverse also seems to be true. Musicians all want to be actors.

    And good luck with!


  6. I've been trying to stay away from the internet a bit more too lately. Some of that time I've used for reading, although I've also tried to get back into a few other of my interests that have been sorely neglected lately.

    History was so watered down when I was a student in elementary, middle, and high school. There's so much I don't know as a result.

    I am looking forward to seeing Twilight today. I just need to convince my husband that it's time to get out of bed and head to the theater. He never worries about lines, but I do for the new releases. He's usually right, but do I want to take that chance that he'll be right this time? ;-)

    Have a great week!

  7. You *almost* make me want to pick up the Washington book...but goodness knows I've got enough here myself to get through first. Geez. Why can't I quit my job and just read all the time?

    Can't wait to hear about the experiment. My SIL is actually marrying the guy she met through them next month. However, from my POV, that's not a good thing.

  8. Sassy, there's only one on the soundtrack. :( I think maybe they're coming out with, or are already out with, a second volume?

    Thanks, Samantha! Definitely check out the challenge. It's open-ended, so no pressure! That's my kind of challenge.

    Lezlie, he was pretty darn fortunate in that way, wasn't he? He never really had a hard time until the end of that second term, and then the criticism nearly killed him. Definitely an ego trip.

    Thanks for the good luck re: Match. I'm sure I'll need it!

    Wendy, I hope you managed to drag your hubs out of bed! And I hope you like the movie, of course. I can't wait to see it again. I can't believe I'm going to see it again in the theater. Ha! And good for you for getting back into your other hobbies. I probably need to do that myself. I have a closet full of paints feeling very neglected.

    Tammy, do you think if enough of us quit our jobs (think mass exodus) they'll just give in and pay us for it? Almost like senior skip day when they excuse everyone because what else are they gonna do? :D And thank you for the good luck wishes re: A friend of mine just married a guy she met through it, and they seem really well suited to each other. Sounds like your SIL maybe not so much.

  9. lol. from all these teenage movies i've developed a rule: I'll pretend they aren't hot until they're 18, then i won't let myself feel bad for thinking about it after. anyway, you're 4 years closer to his age than i am. Go for it girl!

    I've tried eharmony the last 6 months. results have been mediocre. good luck!

  10. Well, I'm reading The Audacity of Hope along with other books. Being indifferent as I am, I have been seized by this urge to read at least something about election, president and politics. Now that I have made my small step in this subject, I think I will read more about the other presidents. :)

  11. I suspect almost everyone is an aspiring musician, except the professional musicians, who mostly seem to be aspiring writers.

  12. I like the idea of the Presidents challenge- very cool :-) good luck with; I'm looking forward to hearing your adventures :-)

  13. LOL, Melanie! I love that philosophy! Sounds good to me! Sorry to hear eharmony has been mediocre at best. Good luck to you, too!

    Hi, Matt...I'm glad this step into political reading is opening more reading doors for you! Enjoy The Audacity of Hope. I loooved it (not surprising). :D

    Ahh, Stu, great point. I can't argue with that. It seems to be a gospel truth.

    Thank you, Marie! I'll keep y'all posted for sure. :)

  14. 42 Presidents! Quite a challenge. You there was one who was only president for about 30 days before he became ill and died. Is there a book just about him?

  15. Good to see I'm not the only one struck by the urge to re-read the whole Twilight series. Hee! I'm about 250 pages into the first one. It's totally turning into one of my comfort reads now.

  16. LOL, C.B...I'm sure someone took it upon themselves to write a book about him!

    Jen, it's one of my comfort reads, too. I got sidetracked the last couple of days, but I should definitely finish my re-read today.

  17. I'm glad you enjoyed your Washington book for the reading project. You know I made almost the exact same comment about feeling smarter for partcipating - I'm sure it's true!


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