take one woman with low self esteem, but quite good hair
add one moronic illness
stir in some medication which causes hair to fall out
mix it all up and this is what you get...

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Book me in 

Book meme. Ach.

This is where I disappoint all you people who think I'm well read and reveal that actually, I don't read very much at all. Not "normal" things anyway. Reading books just doesn't seem to fit into my life very well. If I took a train or a bus to work, I would probably read every day, but I drive or am driven to work. The only time I think to read a book is when I go to bed. But inevitably, as soon as I pick the thing up, I fall asleep. Ask Big - he's the one on "sleep patrol" - ready to nudge me with his elbow as soon as I start nodding off.

I also have a shocking short term memory, so once I've finished a book, even if it's had me gripped from start to finish, I'll forget virtually everything about it.

When it comes to choosing books at a bookshop - I am paralysed by "l'embarras du choix". I usually buy books from charity shops as there are fewer to choose from. I'll just grab one which catches my eye.

But thanks (I think) to Gordon, I shall attempt this nonetheless.

1. One book that changed your life - the hardest question first.

"Le mythe de Sisyphe" by Camus (The myth of Sisyphus). I studied a lot of French humanist philosophy at university and was captivated by Camus and his philosophy of balance, which still informs me today.

2. One book that you've read more than once.

"Les Liaisons dangereuses" by Choderlos de Laclos. This is the first one to come to mind. As preposterous and pretentious as this undoubtedly sounds, I've probably read more French literature than English, mainly because I *had* to read it for my degree. I rarely read books more than once.

3. One book that you'd want on a desert island.

An Atlas of the world. I can stare, fascinated, at maps for hours on end.

4. One book that made you laugh.

"Bridget Jones' diary" by Helen Fielding. It made me laugh out loud at the time, whereas the film left me cold, despite the brooding presence of Colin Firth.

5. One book that made you cry.

Apart from my book of Shakespeare's Insults which makes me cry with laughter, the only one I can think of is "Gobbolino, the witch's cat" by Ursula Moray Williams (thanks, Google, though I'd remembered it as Gobbolina!) which made me cry when I was little, though I can't remember why.

6. One book that you wish you had written.

Oh, something lucrative, like Harry Potter (I have never read a Harry Potter book, fact fans!)

7. One book you wish had never been written.

Any book which preaches hatred, self-hatred or intolerance. Or any other bad things. Peace, man.

8. One book that you are reading at the moment.

At the moment, I am reading "L'Express", a French, weekly news magazine, known as an "hebdomadaire" - incidentally one of my favourite French words which means, simply, "weekly", though it looks like it should mean something quite different to my eyes. Like dromedary. I digress.

Because I have to retake one of my Translation diploma papers in January (it still hurts), I am trying to keep up with what's going on in France, so have got myself six months of subscription. Thank you, Mr Internet - your uses are many and varied. Yes, I could read it online, but somehow reading online doesn't feel like proper reading. Even though I spend hours doing it until my eyes hurt.

The last proper book I finished was "We need to talk about Kevin" by Lionel Shriver and one I'm still working my way through is "The Power of Babel" by John McWhorter - some of the passages on creoles and patois are hilarious if you're interested in languages, but it can be a bit much for bedtime reading.

9. One book that you've been meaning to read.

"Call of the weird" by Louis Theroux. My friends bought it for me but it is currently sitting sullenly, untouched and unloved, on the coffee table. But Louis, you know I love you, don't you?

10. Five others that you'd like to do this.
I don't tag, baby.

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