Enjoy Not Knowing

Just another American living in Sweden


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book of august: othello

This summer I read many a book. 90% of them were children’s books under 20 pages long, so in my spare time it was great to sit down to a slightly more intellectual book. Othello is one of the classics, though I was never assigned to read it in school. Part of me is sad about this because I’ve missed out on class discussions and a teacher’s interpretations of the work. Yet, the more realistic part of me isn’t disappointed because I probably wouldn’t have read it then anyways.


If you haven’t read Othello, do. The plot is enjoyably dramatic, even if you already know the gist of it – it’s worth a full read through. Plus you get to experience what I assume to be one of the earliest uses of the word “holla” as well as the wonderful expression “light of brain”. Every part of me is excited to use that figure of speach as much as possible. I have absolutely no idea why “light of brain” has fallen out of use, as I personally have daily use for it. 

Enjoy fair readers!

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book of july: déjà dead

I loved this book. I expected to, but not this much. I’m not sure if it’s purely due to my recent lack of reading adult fiction, but reading this book reminded me what it means to read for fun. Something about reading only for the enjoyment of it is hugely different than reading for my classes. That combined with the fact that Kathy Reichs’ is a brilliantly entertaining mind lead to this being so hugely enjoyable for me. 

These books inspired the TV series Bones, which I loved. Thus my expecting to love this book. And, as is so often the case, the book is just so much better than the on screen depiction. It was particularly fun to try to pick out which of the book characters represented which of the television depictions (aside from the obvious). Though in my mind Temperance doesn’t really look like Emily Deschanel (actress in the series). Another interesting aspect was to see which changes were made. One of the big ones, not so spoilery, was the relocation from Quebec (book) to Washington D.C. (television).

This month I’m recommending a twofer. If you haven’t read this book and only seen the show. Read it now. If you have read it and not seen the show, get on it, the show is a lot of fun. If you’ve done neither then you’re in for hours and hours of fun! I’m excited to continuing to read the Temperence Brennan novels, and I’ll be sure to post here when I do.


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interstellar

Have you guys seen this movie? It is epic.

It had been on my “to watch” list since it came out in 2014, we just never got around to seeing it in the theater. Then I saw that IMDb added it to the top 250 list, and there you have it, two birds – one stone! Also, seeing as the slogan for the movie was “THE END OF EARTH WILL NOT BE THE END OF US” I was pretty confident it would lift my spirits regarding the future of humanity. You know, that the only possible series of future events won’t inevitably lead to our extinction.

I ended up seeing Interstellar on an aircraft. Where I proceeded to hold onto my face for stability for the duration of the movie. My fellow passengers may or may not have thought I have anxiety. Which wouldn’t be completely untrue with regards to the emotional roller coaster I went on during the viewing.

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Ladies and gentlemen, prior to take off please make sure your seat and tray table are in the upright position, that your seat belt is securely fastened and that all carry-on luggage is properly stowed. At this time, please feel free to take a firm grasp upon each side of your face and do not let go for the following 150 minutes.

Now, I’m no theoretical astrophysicist, but I’m pretty convinced everything in the movie could totally happen. Hence the need to clutch my face for two and a half hours. If you have not seen this move, please do so. It is worth your time.

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book of june: tumbling turner sisters

My most favorite author whom I’ve ever babysat for has done it again! As I’m sure you recall one of Juliette Fay’s previous books, The Shortest Way Home,  has also been featured on the blog, and as her newest novel was released this month I just had to give it a read!

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Now I don’t know if it’s my poor memory, but this book seemed funnier than the others! Who knew Mrs. Fay had such witty sentence composition, such as:

“At thirteen, a girl just isn’t prepared for the kind of unfairness this world is ready to hand out every single day of the week.”

and

“Everyone likes to think they might be appealing to someone, somewhere, and hopes that person has all of his mental faculties, most of his teeth, and might even be kind and lovable, too.”

and

“Like a bag full of cats, the idea of marriage never seemed to keep a permanent shape, so I was wary to go blindly down the aisle to my possible doom.”

Going into this I had no idea how funny it would be. I’m not sure if it’s because of our employer/employee relationship, or the fact that we mostly discussed bedtime routines, massive LEGO projects and any bowel movement or small injury that may have occurred that evening…I just hadn’t realized how funny Juliette Fay is until now.

I’ve always really liked historical fiction, though I forget that I like it. So it was a wonderful surprise how much I enjoyed this book. Seeing as I was a little skeptical about the historical fiction thing going in. (See previous comment about how forgetful I am).

Like I said, Juliette Fay has done it again, definitely read this book! I won’t tell you who my favorite sister is, you’ll have to decide that on your own, and when you do feel free to comment below.

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book of march: modern romance

So many people I know were reading this book last summer, I just had to give it a go. And I am sure glad I did.

  
As per my usual I listened to the audiobook version, because Aziz is a funny guy and funny people are funny to listen to. I even noticed some parallels between this funny guy and other funny people. For example he opened his book, like Sarah Silverman, wondering what the listeners would be doing upon listening. Aziz painted a lovely picture of his listener being curled up in bed, enjoying a cup of tea by the fire. Sarah bet on pooping. I’m not saying one or the other is better…but I feel I should say for the record I’m in the first category.

From Aziz I learned that In the 30’s and 40’s people would go as far as they had to to find a mate, but no farther. The “girl/boy nextdoor” is a real thing, and many people clearly loved the ones they’re with already. What I took away from this is that I must have been terrible at finding a mate since I had to go all the way to Sweden to find her.

I also learned that average age of first marriage is 27 for women and 29 for men, and 30 for men and women in big cities. So, again, I follow none of the norms. To be fai Aziz admits to focusing on heterosexual relationships in his book, so I guess I just don’t fit in here. Joking aside I do think there is a lot of fun stuff to take away from the book. But I’m not going to tell you any more about it, you’ll have to just go read it for yourself. 

I will say that there are robots and scientific studies in the book. If that doesn’t pique your interest I don’t know what you’re even doing here.


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book of february: essentialism: the diciplined pursuit of less

I really liked this book. Really a lot.


I’m not sure if it’s because we’re moving soon, or that we’ve just had a baby, but I feel the need to have less things. Not only have less things but do less things. Do less things more effectively. Which is what this book is about.

Now I definitely think you should go read this for yourself, but my big take home was that whenever a choice presents itself to you, in life, love, business, whatever, ask yourself if/how this will help you make your biggest contribution to the world. This is some difficult stuff, it requires one to be a grounded and informed individual. But, something I think is important to remember is that nothing is written in stone, and you should never not do something because of the time it takes. The time will pass anyway. If an opportunity you deem to be important enough to pursue presents itself, then it’s an easy: Yes.

After finishing the book I find myself often asking myself two questions (in my quest to have less possessions and to use my time more effectively):

  1. If I didn’t already own this, how much would I pay for it?
  2. Do I want this enough to struggle for it?

I feel the second question needs some explaining. By combining what I read in this book, and the contents of this article, I ask myself this question for two reasons. If I think I want something I need to first examine the hinders/obstacles ahead of me that may prevent me from getting there. After I have determined the obstacles I need to then determine if I am willing to overcome them. The answers to these questions help me decide if whatever I’m pondering about is truly worth pursuing.

As I said, wonderful book. Go read it!


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red sox vs. yankees

Fenway

Speaking of summary activities (see my memory lane series), this August my Dad and I caught a ball game together.

As you may have picked up on, I live in Sweden. I don’t know if you know this, but Sweden is not close to Boston. I mean relatively, it is close, when you take into consideration the expansive universe in its entirety. But it still takes me like 10 hours to get there door to door, so in my tiny human world, it’s far.

For Father’s Day 2015 I got us tickets to see the Red Sox play the Yankees in the major league baseball’s oldest ball park. Opening in 1912 Fenway Park….actually, you know what, you can Google Fenway park if you like, and this isn’t a public tour of the stadium. So back to the game.

The best road on Earth

My Dad is a die-hard Yankees fan, yet despite his best efforts his first-born was influenced heavily by the local atmosphere and became a Sox fan. This always ends in my embarrassment as we ride public transit in Boston and my father is fully decked out in Yankees gear. He has yet to be assaulted though, so that’s the up side.

Dad & Me

Play ball!!

Play ball!!

We enjoyed the evening thoroughly with good seats, great company and a little stadium food. Plus, with a 4-3 win for the Sox I was a very pleased Boston fan that evening. Though on the ride home my father became quite the surpuppa (as we say in Swedish). Surpuppa is not only a really fun word, but it translates to sourpuss, which is also a really fun word! Good times all around.

Mandatory Big Papi pic.

Mandatory Big Papi pic.

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