theoretically "Re: an introduction, of sorts" but really lots of things

jenwa jhsung at MIT.EDU
Tue Dec 14 20:53:33 EST 1999


Max asked:
> What's a 'marathon scritcher' though?

"scritching" is kind of the scratching and/or massaging of another person's
head...  a gesture of comfort, or affection, or friendliness...  i guess it's
probably an MIT-community thing...

if you want to get on the list for the Archer's Goon tape, please send me the
address to which it should go.  thanks.  :)

meanwhile, completely separately, Gili said:
>Getting to the point, the HRSF club 
>(Harvard-Radcliffe Science Fiction) sent repeated emails, and at some point 
>late in the week started tempting people to come because Terry Pratchett 
>would be at the first meeting. I found this very hard to believe - thought 
>they were bluffing just to get people to come. But it worked, and he WAS 
>there, and he was HILARIOUS.

augh!!  tell me this was before i got here in 1996, or i think i shall die and
take all of HRSFA with me for not inviting MITSFS!

and i second whomever mentioned _Good Omens_.  it is something i seriously
believe that almost anyone who even remotely has the same taste in anything that
i do should read.

later, in yet another totally unrelated vein, Max said:
>I like dogs in the particular (specific dogs I've met) but I love all cats,

this is *exactly* how i feel about dogs and cats.  though perhaps my favorite
sentiment [that i don't actually particularly share] about animals is from a
friend of mine who says he loves bunnies for that incredibly blank look in their
eyes.  note: for anyone who likes cats, there's a couple lovely places in
Gaiman's Sandman where cats show up...  especially "A Dream of A Thousand Cats",
from the comp. _Dream Country_.

on the topic of Skiver's Guide [and also maybe Changeover?]:
i have to say, i would love to have a copy of it, and would be extremely psyched
if there were some way to work something out with the publishers for a very
small print run or something.

and, in response to deborah's infamous question:
>Come on, someone on the Diana Wynne Jones list has to admit to
> being a huge soap opera fan, who reads DWJ books between monster
> track rallies and makeovers.  We can't all be PBS (for
> non-Americans, snooty public television station) poster
> children.  I admit, I devour trashy romance novels.

<wry smile> while i've never watched soap operas, been to monster truck rallies,
or had a makeoever, i do have a strange fondness for trashy romances, and when i
was around middle school aged i read such books as Sweet Valley High and Pen
Pals and the Sleepover [Gang?  Club?  i can't remember anymore] and Girl Talk,
and still retain a certain nostalgic fondness for them.  i also have a soft spot
for a good cheesy romantic comedy films.
hmm.  and i probably own too many knives of the decidedly non-kitchen persuasion 
to really be a PBS poster child.  and i live in a dorm that apparently used to
be famous for its LSD and has it's own version of the 100-question purity test.

and, finally, possible reasons i like Dahl:
there is something incredibly surreal about many of Dahl's books.  it's a
remarkably skewed version of our world, and i think in some ways it's very apt. 
also, i have to admit that while most of the time [at least nowadays] i'm a firm
believer in everyone being of worth and that no-one is as bad as they seem or
deserve to be hurt, there are some moods in which in my gut i really dislike a
certain vein of stupidity, and in Dahl's books those who exhibit that sort of
stupidity are... well.  not rewarded, as they sometimes seem to be in this
"reality" we live in.  also... well, my favorite Dahl book is _The BFG_, and
while it's been awhile since i've read it [it's on my bookshelf back home in MN,
which makes it difficult to re-read], i have a distinct belief that really, at
heart, it is *sweet*.  and i identified so strongly with _Matilda_...  i can't
say i think Dahl's worlds are they way the world *should* be, which is what i
want out of some of the books i read.  but i do think they say interesting and
brutally true things about ours.  also, the grotesque has its own beauty and
grace, which Dahl sometimes hits squarely on the head.

--jenwa.

one more question: is one longish email better than many short?  or should i
just sent a bunch of separate replies next time?
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