Of Books and Fantasies

The Hugo Awards is upon us again.

After rejecting the nomination for Anansi Boys a few years back, Neil Gaiman has accepted the nomination for the Graveyard Book, adding to the millions of accolades heaped upon it.

graveyard book, neil gaiman, cool book cover

While the Graveyard Book is one of the VERY VERY VERY few books that I get to finish reading, cover to cover in recent times, I did not feel it was THAT strong an offering. I think I got through it based mainly on loyalty to the author. Felt that many of the themes and ideas were rehashed from his earlier works… Sandman and the wonderfully awesome American Gods come to mind.

I love the fact that the Hugos has now shed it’s snotty potty pretentiousness and now have categories which honor Graphic Novels, as well as films. Definitely a step in the right direction. After all, art evolves, stories evolve, and so the story form must evolve as well.

As a friend reminded me recently… The Medium is the Message.

american gods, neil gaiman, cover

American Gods, now THAT is a book that totally deserves the Hugo. Just re-read it and it’s still good on it’s 5th reading. There’s something about the characters that makes you feel for almost each and everyone of them. The rich history that comes with each of the Gods makes the book read like a Justice League of Gods, of sorts. In my eyes, it deserves a “Classic” status already.

Speaking of American Gods, I actually managed to dredge up this really cool website. It lists most, if not all the gods mentioned in American Gods, along with their unique origin stories!

It’s a great read for those that dig the book. For those that dig mythologies. And especially for those love reading up on obscure deities, forgotten gods, and little known stories.

Anyway, the point of this whole post is that, looking through the list, it makes me realize how much I’ve fallen. There was a time when I would have gone out to get most of the books on the list, if only just to glance through them. These days, I can only gaze at the list wistfully and wish I have the time to read even 1 of them.

“Working Life Sucks” is a recurring mantra on this site. So I decided to do something about it. I put my foot down, and downloaded Neil Stephenson’s Anathem. Now I am sneaking sentences while commuting on the train, while waiting for the Girlfriend, and of course, while sitting on the pot.

Even so, I still yearn for the day when I can just cosy up on my couch with a book in my hands, a hot cocoa drink besides me and a thunderstorm raging outside my window.

These days, it seems all I can get is the thunderstorm…

Tough Choice… Pick Me

I’ve not been these impressed since seeing Ronaldhino hit the bar of the goal post more than 10 times… consecutively… from outside the penalty box.

Or since Tiger Woods juggle a golf ball with his golf club

I have no idea how true these clips are, but for a while they made me call football –  soccer….

And that is a big thing.

The Other Day, I was propositioned to be a Gigolo

Ok… Social escort… po-tay-toes, po-tah-toes.

It might not sound like a big deal to some of you (after all I AM pretty awesome), but believe me, in my list of “Things that are not very likely to happen to me”, it is ALMOST right up there with “Angelina Jolie offering herself to me”

And the story goes…

Apparently, there was a discussion about 2 years back on what a few of my colleagues were going to do, should we ever leave our current job. A few random ideas were thrown about, mostly dealing with business that we can go into.

ALLEGEDLY, I went into a passionate rhetoric on the plausibility of the social escort business that one of them actually took me seriously. Yup, I think in some not so small nor subtle ways, I might’ve talked my friend into becoming a pimp.

What can I say? I have a strong influence on people…

Now that THAT is crossed off my list, I just need to wait for Angelina to contact me.

Sheep Go to Heaven (Goats go to Hell)

Yes, apparently, the plural for sheep is… sheep. The Girlfriend will be pleased with that admission after 6 years of denial from me.

Anyway, the following is what would happen if you give a bunch of Christmas lights to sheep herders with waaaaaay too much time on their hands.

The results are seriously, for short of a better word… awesome.

Really have to give it to them.

Sidenote: Sheep have the most ridiculous blur looks on their faces, don’t they?

Comparisons

I attended a secondary school friend’s wedding over the weekend.

The tricky thing about such reunions is that there is bound to be comparison on how you are now and how you were. People (broadly defined as those not of the Male gender) like to associate how you were and how you eventually turned out. Before those that wear panties decide to get theirs in a bunch, I present the following evidence…

I’ve not seen some of these people for more than a decade, but I could swear that the girls took great pains to squeeze into dress sizes they were wearing a decade ago. Some of them more apparent than others – Here I’m talking about the the ones that are looking more and more like Smurfettes as the evening wore on. No, I know that girls don’t shrink. I’m talking about the ones turning blue from holding their breath and sucking in their tummy for the whole night.

One of the Plus1s confided that his fiancée (a prominent belle of the school, back in the days) actually went on a crash diet so that she would not be bitched about by, direct quote  “the other Fat Cows” at the wedding reception.

Most of the boys at the wedding reception, on the other hand, fitted comfortably into their shirts from a decade ago… if we decided to wear them as our sock.

Still not convinced? I present Evidence 2

The groom introduced us to the bride, whom some of us were seeing for the first time.

As they went around the table, shaking everyones’ hands, you could just make out the girls giving knowing glances to each other as they checked out the wedding band.

There had been a discussion earlier in the evening with regard to the type of ring the notoriously thrifty groom would get for his bride. The discussion had inadvertantly (of course) turned to what kind of rings their own boyfriends/fiancés/husbands/(I swear this is true)”boyfriend if I had one” got them.

Spontaneous hand fanning, strategically showing (and in some instances hiding) ringed fingers simultaneously occurred around the table during this point of the discussion.

The Boys, on the other hand concentrated very hard not to appear like they were staring at the bride’s boobs.

Appear being the operative word. We can’t help it.

Wedding gowns, especially tube wedding gown with plunging necklines shows us things that we do not normally see. We concluded that that might possibly be the reason why everyone’s fawning about how the women are always the most beautiful on their wedding days.

I digress… Anyway, as the night wore on, the ladies continued having meaningful discussions and finding out little details about each others’ lives, if only to compare.

As for the Boys, we knew better than to be caught in the cross fire. We were engaged in more mature activities such as rubbing each others’ pot bellies and knocking the occasional bald patches with our knuckles.

And I maintain that Geeks are the sappiest Romantics in the world

I have to say, I am surprised!

What started out as a seemingly self indulgent, heavily CGI-ed green screened project turns out to be one of the best short films I’ve seen this year, granted we’re only a quarter into the year, but…. you know what I mean.

And for a presumably low budget indie film, the actors were really stellar.