Day 12585: Been having notmares, the lesser book cull of 2011, and finishing Arrested Development

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Summary: Have been having a lot of dreams lately that seem to want to be nightmares, but fail; planning to box up a couple big boxes of books tonight; and Sarah and I finished Arrested Development, again, last night. That and some other notes.

BLOT: (13 Nov 2011 - 11:29:42 AM)

Day 12585: Been having notmares, the lesser book cull of 2011, and finishing Arrested Development

First off, I will not be doing a "My Week in Books" thingie tonight. For the past couple of weeks I have posted a blog about what books I am on, and about to be on, and thinking about, and that sort of thing. I like writing it, but since I have read one book and it has shown up in both of those posts as "A book I will read soon!" I figure it would be pointless. Next week, we'll have a double. Maybe. Cart. Chickens. Before they hatch. All that.

Lately, I have been having a lot of "Not-mares". I wrote about the one where I was being stalked and ended up having the stalker shot. That tendency has continued. In the past couple of nights I have had at least three. I have the feeling there are more. One involved these weird slimy white goblin things that were starting to invade the area but I ended up making a study of them and had no issue using something like Michael Crichton style science adventure techniques to be just fine. That same night, I had a dream where I was a woman kidnapped*, along with another woman, by an extremist group. It seems, in this second dream's case, that escape was more or less impossible because of how tight their security was: any escapees would be caught and punished. Yet I was able to scoot out along a path they assumed they had better control over and, at the end of the dream, was returning much better armed and prepared to fight back. In the third dream, had just early this morning, it was zombies. At some point in time they break in but I am able to use their "hording" instincts to bottleneck them into a hallway where they cannot quite get to me and then try to break their necks. Try, because at no point in these dreams did I ever actually overcome in a sense of finality. In all cases I might simply have died had it gone on longer.

As a fan of the concept of nightmares, these "notmares" are strange to me. It is as if my brain is fighting back against my frequent darker dreams by folding in escape clauses into their fiber. then, about the time I am getting ready to awake, it activates this aspect. Since nightmares are all about how you ultimately can't escape—you walk outside just to fall into a pit and start back over—the only true innoculation from them, excluding something like lucid dreaming, is to bail on them during the upswing. "Oh, you made it outside...dream over."

In a less oneirological bent (though feel free to watch a video from CunninLinguists' album Oneirology: "Looking Back"), Sarah and I have been rewatching Arrested Development. Finished it last night (after eating the salsa I'm about to mention in a paragraph) This would be our third time through. I think, maybe, our second FULL time through (it seems like we skipped an ep or two the second rewatch). I still enjoy it. Immensely. Such a fun little microcosm. I do see cracks in the armor more, now. The middle stretch of the second season—where they tried to increase Tobias's pratfalls [almost all of which, during this stage, were heavily telegraphed] and GOB as president in some sort of extended pastich of a Kosmo Kramer routine from a mid-90s Seinfeld ep—is a big crack but the show will obviously suffer over time due to its sometimes heavy use of very contemporary jokes. The Iraq War jokes will probably have a degree of resonance even a decade or two down, but there are some snipes at Fox that already fail to make as much sense. The core of the show is still tops and I am curious to see how well the forthcoming epilogue/"closing chapter" will play out. Especially when you get such unknowns as whether or not Michael Cera will even play.

As for tonight, I have only two plans. First, I will continue to suffer from some far too hot salsa I made last night—soooooo good and foreshadowed in the previous paragraph—and I plan to box up at least one or two boxes full of books. Maybe one for storage and one or two for simple discarding: trash or thrift store. Lately I've realized more and more that I have a chunk of books that are textbooks likely to never be used again and impulse buys from used bookstores, thriftstores, and so forth. The kind of book that might have been cool to read right then and there, but now a couple of years on it stands a good chance of sitting around until I eventually throw it I'm shortcutting it and getting to the point.

The general point, intent, at this stage is to get my book collection—somewhere in the 3000 codex range, plus about 500 in storage—down to a core collection where stable collection dedicated primarily to the books most central to my interests. The idea being that books not-central to my interest can be checked out from a library, bought cheap and then tossed out, gotten as an ebook, and so forth; while the 2000+ volumes I really like are kept and kept well, perhaps occasionally replaced for better, more true editions. And so forth.

I'm not sure how long it will take me to do this "lesser book cull" but there will probably be two or three of them across stages as I try a few test samples from my unread books and then clear out. The "greater book cull" should therefore be done about the end of December, maybe early January. Just in time to get some more for Christmas. ;).

And that about wraps me up. Going to make a nice chicken soup, crack some more 1Q84, take Sarah for walk—wives, like dogs, wait, down that sentence lies monsters—and waste a Sunday. As Sundays should be. Wasted, I mean.

PS: In my last "day in the life" style post I had the day off by a whole year. Somehow I left out an entire year when adding it up. This time, I created a small Python script that can run it for me. Ah, progress...

* I realize this must sound strange, but keep in mind that I often inhabit someone else while I'm in my dreams: it can be a younger me, a fictionalized me, but almost never is it really the me that is typing out this blog post.


Written by Doug Bolden

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