Monday, May 08, 2006

books & such

So, I realize that I need to write something about my recent "retreat" weekend with my school peers. I'll do that... but later. When I'm less tired and have figured out what I want to say about it clearly.

In the meantime, I've read two books recently re: teenage girls. The first is a non-fiction by Rachel Simmons, "Odd Girl Out." It's about how aggression and bullying is gender biased. Its a research book done by a woman who wanted to figure out why adolescent girls are mean to each and shun each other, even when they were the best of friends just a few days ago. It's really interesting, and brings back lots of memories along with dispensing the author's theory about female aggression. Ms.Simmons basically says that girls are sneaky, rumormongering backstabbers because our society tells them they can't own or admit any feelings of anger, jealousy or competition... and that these feelings are repressed for so long that they build up to a rage that spills out in the snakey girl behavior that every single one of us has seen at some point. Along with this is the fear that any admission of conflict in a relationship is equal to the end of the relationship. So, girls aren't supposed to get angry and if you do... and you tell your friend you're upset with her, your friendship will be over. screwed up. anyways, it's an awesome book. I want to write "I'm sorry" and mail it to more than one person.

The other book is "Don't Kill The Freshman" by Zoe Trope. Ms.Trope was a high school freshman in a Portland suburb who graduated in 2003. I love it. It's filled with all the confusion and clarity, hope and angst, love and hate that being a teenage girl is made of. She also calls Powell's her temple. Which makes me love her more. The book is beautiful, funny and agonizing. I want everyone to buy a copy and help Zoe pay for college and grad school and whatever else she wants.

also, 2 small things:
1. I like this painting... I just need to figure out more about the artist.
2. I love the word portmanteau: a term in linguistics that refers to a word or morpheme that fuses two or more grammatical functions. A folk usage of portmanteau refers to a word that is formed by combining both sounds and meanings from two or more words. As Humpty Dumpty explains to Alice words from Jabberwocky, saying, "Well, slithy means lithe and slimy …. You see it's like a portmanteau—there are two meanings packed up into one word."

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