Flurry of Activities

It has been busy for the past couple of weeks with homework and seeing people.  On Friday, October 25th, I received a great surprise.  Brett Butler, the baseball player, came to our school to talk to the local high-school and college baseball players.  As a child I avidly watched every Dodger baseball game on the television (at least all the games my mom would let watch).  This was back in the 90s, so the games were still good.  I loved watching Raul Mondesi, Hideo Nomo, Orel Hershier and other Dodger players, but my favorite was Brett Butler. I remember when he was first diagnosed with cancer and his comeback when everyone thought his baseball career would be over.  The night that Princess Diana died, I was standing in line at the local Target with my Brett Butler autobiography, praying that I’d have a chance to meet my hero.  Sadly, that was not the case and I was heartbroken.  Baseball, as a child, meant a lot to me.  So seeing Brett Butler up close and hearing him speak was monumental.

I also saw Marilynne Robinson later that evening.  She was witty and quiet.  The venue was amazing as it was an old theater in Santa Barbara.  She shared more information about Glory and her decision to return home that was not in her most recent book, Home.  These details just showed how much Marilynne Robinson was acquainted with her own characters and the hope of having another Gilead novel.

Last week I saw John Green again in Santa Monica (I saw him earlier at the ALA conference, but he was only signing books).  It was amazing.  John Green drew a crowd of not just highschoolers, but adults of all ages.  Admittedly, some adults were there with their children, but not many.  There were only a few (I could count them on one hand) who haven’t been faithfully tracking the Brotherhood 2.0 or was not a Nerdfighter.  The energy in the room was fueled mostly from John Green himself (which was surprising due to how long he’s been on tour) as he dressed up as Walt Whitman, threw marshmellow peeps into the crowd, and was relaxed  on stage as if he toured all the time.

Besides traveling up and down Los Angeles County, I have been working away at my classes.  In less than six weeks my first semester will be done.  After the middle of November I will have only six units, which will feel like a breeze after doing on average 10 units (hurrah for one and two unit classes!).  And as the stores don their Christmas decorations, I’m reminded that all too soon the homework will be over.

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Calm Before the Storm

Marilynne Robinson

Marilynne Robinson

Tonight Brian and I will be going to Santa Barbara to see Marilynne Robinson.  Santa Barabara is reading Housekeeping for their city read.  Last year we went to see Jonathan Safran Foer as Thousand Oaks was reading Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close.  And while I’m glad that Pasadena chose Call of the Wild, there is something to be said about having good authors come and be able to talk about their books.

And sometime tomorrow we will be heading out to Oak Glen, to get fresh apples and cider.  Maybe even some barbeque. Next week I will be busy with a wiki project, mid-term, and a small paper to write, so I need to keep reminding myself that now is the time to relax before the storm hits next week.

Interview with Marilynne Robinson

When reading Gilead or her most recent novel, Home, I couldn’t help but to stop at times and contemplate what I just read. For more modern novels, this is not typical. It is not surprising then, when I read this interview that Marilynne Robinson says that she does not like clever modern writing, but old books are her favorites.


“She is known as a serious person who hates small talk and prefers authors who are long dead: “I’m not terribly interested in clever writing.” She mostly keeps to herself in the broad sweep of Iowa, where she teaches at the university’s renowned Writers’ Workshop. She is sometimes seen walking her dog with her head buried in Melville or Thoreau. ”


To read more of the good interview: Meeting Marilynne Robinson at More Intelligent Life