Meredith's Challenge 2.0

52 books, one year. Stay tuned for more details.

Monday, March 27, 2006

2.8 Julie & Julia: 365 days, 524 Recipes, A Tiny Apartment Kitchen by Julie Powell

Julie Powell decided to challenge herself in a pretty crazy way, likes Buffy the Vampire Slayer, plays Civilization and loves to cook... Sound like anyone you know?

I read, swallowed in great greedy gulps really, Powell's site after she completed her challenge. Which is why I resisted reading the book. While I recognized most of the stories, the book had more details about some things but significantly less about the day to day drudgery of the "project". The madness of it is obvious, cook every recipe in Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking in one year.

On her site, Powell complains a lot, I would be too if I took up the same challenge she did, whereas, in the book, it is muted. It is a crazy project; it's way too much for any person to take on while working full time, which she did. On the whole I liked it. I thought that the imaginary scenes with Paul and Julia Child were a little hokey, I didn't feel like they were necessary or added anything to an all ready interesting story. They were even less fitting by the end when Julie finds out from a reporter that Julia thinks that Powell is taking advantage of Child.

Powell desperately needed a shake-up, to jolt herself out of an exhausting, frustrating existence. Lord knows, I can identify with that. I've mentioned before that I am going back to school. I found out last week that I've been officially accepted. I know that community colleges aren't really supposed to turn anyone away, but it was a bit of a nail biter, as the boy will attest to. As of August, I will be a culinary student at Santa Barbara Community College. I'm thrilled. And I only have 44 more books to go. Expect a good portion of them to be about food.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Is it time to go home yet?

Here is a list of the things that I have forgotten at home this morning:

a) breakfast
b) lunch
c) my book
d) my wallet

Here is a list of the things that I need from said wallet:

a) my library card
b) any sort of picture ID, in case I get hit by a car on my
way home
c) my bus pass
d) my magical money card that would allow me to
get breakfast/lunch free

At least I haven't forgotten:

a) money
b) pants

On a lighter note, I only have 98 work days left before I go back to school. Yes, I am counting. If you had the week I am having so far, you would be too.

Friday, March 17, 2006


I know that I've been content-less lately. I'm also super far behind on this 52 books thing. *sigh*

This brightened my day considerably. I'm sure that about 750 of them are me, checking to see how the page looks but it's pretty exciting to me at least.

I swear there will be some real content soon.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

2.7 Go Tell It on the Mountain by James Baldwin

I don't think that I know nearly enough about either the New or Old Testaments for this novel have very much meaning for me. It was well written, but I was obviously missing something. I am interested in reading more Baldwin, because I've heard such good things about him, but I don't think that this was the best choice for me.

Has anyone out there read it? What did you think of it? Have you read anything else of his work? Would you recommend it? I wanted to like this but a lot of it was over my head.

I believe that I have also come to the realization that pretending that I will one day soon-ish finish Beauty Myth has come to an end.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Revenge of the Lists!

I see that my desperate trolling for comments got me nowhere. Alas.

While I'm organizing my thoughts on Go Tell It on the Mountain, here's a little something to entertain yourself with (stolen from here). I've read twelve. I'm pretty certain that no matter how long I live, I will never pick up Copperfield, the Pullman trilogy, or Clockwork. And I've never even heard of Birdsong.

My thoughts: It's far too early to declare Curious Incident, Lovely Bones and Time-Traveller's Wife as classics. Granted, Time-Traveller's is brilliant while Curious and Bones are pretty darn good but more so than Morrison's early works? Ibsen? Where the heck is Wharton on this list? Why is Dickens on it twice, no thrice! (Ugh, can't stand him. It's so obvious that he was being paid by the word in all of his stories.) Any other grievous errors you can see?

P.S. Unless Word is lying to me, did you know that you can spell traveller with or without the double L's? Learn something new everyday.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Happy Birthday!

Today marks a year of this site's existence. To celebrate, why don't you leave a book recommendation, disagree about something I wrote about, talk about the last book you read, or just drop me a line. Leave a little love, eh?