Amy (old posts, page 5)

Dead Air by Iain Banks

This is billed as a "deeply satirical and thought-provoking thriller", according to the Sunday Express. I didn't think it was satirical, it seemed pretty realistic to me. Unless there's some definition of satirical I don't understand, which is quite possible. Anyway, it's about this radio DJ who gets into all kinds of trouble. I didn't like the protagonist at first because he seemed like a bit of a selfish prick, but then I got to like him because of his philosophical beliefs, which goes to show you my priorities are perhaps a little messed up.

Pretty exciting book. I recommend it.

Not Really

I'm not really inspired by this posting to the Internet thing lately. I don't have anything particularly original or interesting to say, and I don't say what I do have to say in an interesting or amusing fashion. On the other hand it is nice to keep a kind of digital scrapbook of interesting (to me) things that happen in my life, and this is as good a place as any to keep it. And I know there are a few people who care about me and who I care about who come here and read every so often.

I interrupt myself to say, this is just another meta-entry, isn't it? How dull. Please excuse me, and here is some real content:


I am in that weird spot in my pregnancy, that weird second trimester spot where I feel generally healthy and normal, I am not showing much, and I can't feel the baby moving, so it's like I'm not pregnant at all. I remember being freaked out by this last time, and I am again: Hello! What happened to my pregnancy? I have an ultrasound on April 25th which will, I hope, show that all is well and normal and present. And then soon after that I should start to feel movement, which is, well, neat and cool and nifty and all that stuff you would imagine it is.

The ultrasound should also show whether it is a girl or a boy, which is swell because if it's a boy we need to get different clothes, and also because once we know which it is we only have to pick one name.

I have actually settled on a name I like for a girl, although I'm not sure Blake is sold on it. I will have to let it sit a little longer. It's a good name for a lot of reasons, but it doesn't go so well with Brown, which would be her last name. I don't think many names do, though, so perhaps that is not a good criterion. We already had a name for a boy picked out back when Delphine was still believed to be a boy, so we will use that if this next one turns out to be actually a boy.


I started working a while ago, part-time, and so far it is going well. I am doing the same thing I always do, dicking around with computers, part webmaster, part sys-admin, and also I'm doing some direct marketing stuff and general around-the-officery. It's decent and fun and I'm learning new software and a new(ish) OS -- I'm on a Mac. It's kind of cool, what with being Unix as well. If I had a computer of my very own I expect I would be a Mac, but I don't.

Blake is getting a Mac of his very own but he said last night I can't use it -- I can't even have an account -- so I am stuck with the old Unix box and the PC laptop. Still, I suppose two computers are better than one. I think he is just tired of me being logged on to everything all the time. If we had one of those Internet fridges I would be logged on to it all the time, too. Why log off, when you are just going to have to log on again?

Good Day

Delphine and I had a good day yesterday. It was sunny and warm, the first real spring day of the year. In the morning we went down to the office to fix something, and then picked up some groceries on the way home. Lunch was ham sandwiches and coleslaw (Delphine picked out and ate the ham and left the bread, so I finished hers) and then we had a nap together on the couch, which might be my very favourite thing to do in the whole world.

After the nap we collected ourself and went out for a walk, up to the green grocer to get some lettuce for salad. Because it was so mild out we went at Delphine's pace instead of mine, so we climbed the stairs at Starbucks, touched the flowers at the flower shop, walked on the snow bank at Rogers, climbed the stairs at the bank about twenty times, and tried to get money out of the machine (I said she would have to get a card, and a bank account, and a job first). Then she was tired of walking so I picked her up for the rest of the walk to the store.

At the green grocer she learned about mushrooms (she has learned to say "what's that?" instead of "ga-duh?") and green beans ("noodle?"), and then we walked back. She decided to take a detour at the LCBO because they have lots of good snow to walk on, and that took us to the school. That was an excellent choice, because we were able to visit with the kids and ladies at daycare, and then play in the extensive and deep puddles in the school ground. I had to drag her away from there after at least half an hour of splashing, and by the time we got home our trip to the green grocer had taken a couple of hours.

I cannot say enough about how much I enjoy her company these days. I'm so happy to have a verbal little kid instead of a baby, and I am astonished at how much personality she has, which apparently sprung forth fully-formed. I am finally starting to feel like I, as the stay-at-home parent, have the better side of the deal.

Thirteen Steps Down by Ruth Rendell

This is a thriller set in London. It's a little freaky to read because a lot of it is told from the point of view of the bad guy (I guess that would be a spoiler but he is pretty obviously evil from the first few pages) so you spend the book waiting on the edge of your seat for him to do something appalling.

There is a great female character -- actually all the female characters are interesting -- who makes a surprising and gratifying decision about a boyfriend late in the book. I was very pleased with Rendell when I got to that bit; perhaps I will remember, and read more of her stuff.

How Wal-Mart is Destroying America and The World and What You Can Do About It by Bill Quinn

This was the first book I managed to read since I got back from Florida; I've been so tired and sick I could barely face a magazine, let alone the weighty novels and serious non-fiction that have been showing up at the library for me.

Fortunately this was a nice easy read. Bill Quinn writes in a simple, plain-spoken style and doesn't get bogged down with numbers or long words. He's also good and mad, and rightly so if what he says about Walmart is true, and I have no reason to believe it isn't. A good blood-boiling read without any of the tragedy of, say, Leave None To Tell The Story, the Bible-thick Human Rights Watch report on the Rwandan genocide which is currently anchoring my bedside table and will no doubt stay there until it is due back at the library.

Something by Ian Rankin

While I was in Florida I read a book by Ian Rankin, a Rebus mystery. I don't remember the name but it was the one with the school shooting, and where Rankin kisses Siobhan at the end. It was good. There's something pleasant about reading about grim, chilly Edinburgh when you're in warm, sunny Florida. Especially when you love Edinburgh a lot (except for the weather) and don't really like Florida much (although the weather is nice).

I also read the latest Minette Walters, Disordered Minds, which was also good. Her books always remind me of everything I hate about England, probably because she seems to hate it too. Actually I love England, but I wouldn't want to live there.

Sorry, didn't I mention...?

Okay, I guess I just kind of sprung that on you. Yeah, I'm pregnant. I did announce it a while ago but then I hid the announcement until I had a chance to tell the family, and then I was so sick and miserable I haven't updated in weeks. Months? A long time.

So to recap, pregnant, due in September, I'm not saying exactly when because people made my life so MISERABLE last time when I was late. No, I'm not saying exactly when to real-life people either; the only ones who know are me, Blake and the midwives.

In other news, between the three of us we have suffered the following diseases since I last posted: cold, cold, sinus infection, food poisoning, food poisoning, ear infection, non-specific sore throat and coughing. That in addition to the constant low-grade nausea and crippling fatigue of being first-trimester.

At the moment all I can do is look forward to spring, when it will warm up and all the germs will go away and I will enter my second trimester and be filled with great, unreasonable energy and optimism.