I’m 31. I spent my birthday day sitting in a cold house wishing for sunshine. And reading Mary Karr’s The Liar’s Club. Actually, I kept putting down the book to write – in my journal, not my computer, as I didn’t have one. Actually, I had 3 computers and none of them would turn on. So I bought myself a new one finally – my publisher will be so proud – as I finally have a computer that even he will admit is worthy of being called technology. I am now an Apple Girl.
Hopefully, this new computer – and this extra year of wisdom and “old age” – will push me into being a more productive writer (both blogging and being a novelist has suffered at the hands of my poor entrance into the realm of gadgets).
At the Apple Store today the guy asked me if I wanted to sign into my i cloud or some such nonsense. He spoke some gobblygook that meant nothing to me about joining my computer files to my phone. I told him no thank you and finally had to wave my flip phone at him before he understood. I thought having my techie brother-in-law all but literally hold my hand through the entire computer purchasing experience was enough for them to know that I don’t normally do this. Apparently, it was not enough, they had to see the flip phone for themselves.
The most interesting thing about this gadgetry world was how I spent my pre-birthday evening. On the 21st, when my brother was turning 31 alone (Alone, as in without me, not necessarily actually alone. He is my favorite birthday partner.) somewhere in Austin, I was hanging out with a younger crowd. It was interesting to watch them play video games, the same games I watched people play when I was in my 20’s, but searching for cheat codes from cell phones instead of spirals and laptops. I wanted to read a book amidst the noise, but hadn’t brought one. At home there’s the noise of the four year old, but I find it distracting instead of soothing.
Noise from a four year old makes you feel oddly old. Noise from boys ten years your junior make you forget that you’ve just blown through ten years of your life and are not quite sure what happened to them. They’re gone, like sand.
Reading a memoir during your birthday week is an interesting task. It reminds you of all the things you’ve forgotten. Especially Mary Karr. She remembers with such clarity, and the things she does not she can at least describe the fog of the memory with such clarity that you’re amazed that she can remember that there was a memory lost there.
The Liar’s Club was described by newspapers as being “un-put down able.” I’m not finished reading the book because I find the opposite to be true. Although I love and adore every aspect of her writing, I find it easy to put down. Too easy. It’s so Texas. It’s so familiar. I’m still stuck in the 60’s and not much has changed between 1960’s mentalities in Texas and the ones I grew up with. It was the last book I should have tried reading during this week, but I couldn’t get the energy to finish the other books I had started.
I’m currently in the middle of reading The World is Flat. I was extremely excited about starting this book. It’s been on my shelf and recommendation list for years. I like economic philosophy a lot. I love history. I love fishing for “textbooks” for my daughter to use as she’s older and I build curriculums about of source books. She will not be forced to read this book. It’s so dull. I don’t know that I’m going to get all the way through it. It came so highly recommended! But there is a reason there are ten of them on the shelf of any given bookstore you visit and the copy I bought cost me 50 cents.
All this technology and aging, memoirs, and history that isn’t really history… it reminded me that I bought a kindle awhile back. I haven’t used it since I reviewed The Year of the Hydra. I find my kindle handle, but I still haven’t really fallen in love with it. In fact, I simply forget about it most of the time.
I’m not old. But I’m still trying to figure out if there are any “new tricks” in me. Therefore, I have committed myself to attempting to learn something new (other than the new POS system at the bookstore, which will simply be depressing if I admit how much it irritates me) this week: I’m going to attend a Magic game and see about that. I played Warlords in college for a bit, so maybe it won’t be so bad.