In the High Peaks

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Travels in Siberia

I heard Ian Frazier discuss his latest book Travels in Siberia on "Fresh Air" on National Public Radio last week. I was overwhelmingly enthralled, particularly with the descriptions of his haunted encounters at the former sites of the gulags. So I purchased the book on my Nook.

Detour! Detour! Rant Coming!

Our health care plan is increasing our rates exponentially during the next year, so I've been scratching my head, trying to figure out how to add MORE PAYING WORK to my already overly busy schedule. I am at my wit's end with this country, honestly, and I never thought I'd say that at this stage of life. We are comparatively much better off, supposedly, than so many people, yet we struggle! I truly worry about people who don't have any nest egg to stave off the worst of the additional health care costs! I know many, many of my students do not have any health care whatsoever, though they work up to 40 hours per week. I know they struggle with their finances, and their families can't help them because they're struggling, too. It is much, much worse than you hear on the news.

So it's no wonder, I suppose, that I am completely in sympathy with the Occupy Movement. The people involved ARE having an impact! The Republicans are shaking in their boots, and the rich are carrying buttons and signs saying, "Tax ME--I'm the One Percent!"

I was confronted with a woman at work who had the chutzpah to complain to me that the Occupy Movement not only did not have a focused agenda and list of demands, but homeless people were involved (as if this de-ligitimized the movement!). No, I did not bother to remind this stupid woman that of course the homeless had joined the Occupy Movement, but I did say that the movement doesn't need a focused agenda because they're having a huge impact already railing against the rich who pay no taxes. The movement changed the course of electoral campaigns in three states in November, they've raised awareness all over the country, and people are becoming increasingly fed up with politicians who salivate copiously when they see rich people emptying their pockets for them.

I'm so angry, I don't care who knows it anymore.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

German Literature Month!

This semester, more than ever, I have lost my way with books. I read a bit before I fall asleep, and I'm embarrassed to write the title of the Icelandic novel I'm STILL reading. It's undeniable: I've lost my way--for the time being.

I have, within my house, The Silent Angel: A Novel by German author Heinrich Boll, originally published in Germany in 1951. I hope to read it over the Thanksgiving break. My workload will be lightening, starting November 18 until November 29.

Getting a college literature course off the ground is no mean feat, especially when the teacher was given less than two weeks to prepare before the semester commenced.

I miss all of you and your blogs! How I wish I could make my life different than it is at the moment!

Books can save you, if you let them. I need to remember this!