Tuesday, September 29, 2009

"In some Latin American cultures, a pregnant woman’s cravings are considered very important. If a mother's cravings are not satisfied, the baby might be born with unpleasant personality traits or physical
characteristics associated with the food. For example, if the mother craves strawberries
and does not eat them, the baby might have strawberry spots (Neria)."


and so . . . it's a good thing Stephen bought me those raspberries the other day.

"La cuarentena refers to the forty-day period after childbirth allowed for a new
mother to rest and adjust to motherhood. Family members take care of household chores
so that the new mother may dedicate herself to this time of special bonding with her

Hmm, this doesn't sound too bad either.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Kumquat makes an appearance



I spy with my little eye . . .
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Wednesday, September 16, 2009

with my now protruding tummy, it is all I can do to not have it catch my lunch.
when are they coming out with pregnant mommy bibs?

Friday, September 11, 2009


A few posts ago I reviewed "The Elegant Universe", by Brian Greene. I had to grab a quotation out of it for a paper and realized that the book that I actually read was "The Fabric of the Cosmos", by Brian Greene. I flipped through "The Elegant Universe", and didn't find it as interesting or up-to-date as "The Fabric of the Cosmos."

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

no way out

Though Stephen may read books simply because he wants to, I am still confined (or confine myself) to books for school. I know, I know, I’m a bum . . but at least I like what I’m studying so I’m okay with it. Currently I’m reading for my intro soc class I’m TAing Falling Behind: How Rising Inequality Harms the Middle Class. It’s a quick read (125 pages), but it does an excellent job of explaining why Americans consume. Frank argues that it isn’t so much out of envy or materialism, as much as individuals trying to get an edge, but by so doing they are setting a higher standard for the rest of society that is competing with them to meet. One quote within the book by Richard Layard said “In a poor country, a man proves to his wife that he loves her by giving her a rose, but in a rich country, he must give a dozen roses.” Another favorite of mine was that a wealthy man was defined as “one who earns a hundred dollars a year more than his wife’s sister’s husband.” Truly, our wealth is relative and so is our standard of living.

This last week Stephen and I finally broke down and bought a laptop. I tell you, for a moment my heart was full of glee and I felt a sort of “at last we have arrived” feeling. We ended up taking the Toshiba computer back to the store because it wouldn’t boot up. When they didn’t have any more in stock, we opted to simply not get another one. The burden of possession with all its responsibility had by then settled, and we were all too happy to be rid of the extra weight. (That’s not to say in a couple months when I’m trying to finish up my thesis from home that we won’t again venture to get a laptop again). Sigh.

Oh back to Frank’s book: Another important observation of Frank’s was that “It’s not that we’re dupes of the advertisers; it’s not that we’re manipulated by special interests; it’s not that we’re those frail, irrational creatures that social critics often make us out to be. Rather it’s that many of the decisions we confront are like those confronting participants in a military arms race. Countries don’t buy bombs because they’re stupid; they buy them because it’s bad not to have bombs when the other side has bombs. But although it is not stupid for individual nations in that situation to buy bombs, it can help extremely beneficial for them to forge agreements to limit the number of bombs they buy—provided each side can police the agreement and make sure that the other abides by it.”

He later suggest that increasing taxes for public services will be better off for everyone, because our standard of living will adjust and we’ll be just as happy if not more because we’ll not have to compete quite as much, and also have public services.

I’m a fan. Anyway, this is only a small portion of the book, and it is an excellent read. I suggest it to my fellow consumption fighting friends.

Background boredom

I know, for you who actually read my blog instead of googlereader and see once again another background . . . I get bored sometimes and seeing that I've never found a background I really love, but only like, I have constant dissatisfaction and thus the changing of the background.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Book Review: Galileo's daughter

This book looked terribly interesting, but ultimately it was disappointing. It tells the story of Galileo's daughter, and contains translations of her letters to him throughout his life. I expected it to be more ironically entertaining (she was a nun while he was condemned by for heresy), and more profound. Unfortunately, it seems that Galileo's internal struggle of reconciling his faith as a Catholic and his role as a heretical scientist was not recorded very thoroughly. The majority of the book was taken up with trite, commonplace details. If you do read this book, you can get what the book has to offer by reading the few chapters that deal directly with his infamous trial and its immediate aftermath.