Friday, August 26, 2011

Pleasantly Disturbed Friday

Image Design by Duane Scott
Some time back, my friend Duane Scott started a feature called Pleasantly Disturbed Thursday, and invited us to be pleasantly disturbed with him. It was a random kind of blog post, talking about what you were up to, interesting or dull things going on in your life, the kinds of things that create a pleasant disturbance. It went on for quite a while, and then trickled off.

I was actually encouraged to see that Duane was reviving it as Pleasantly Disturbed Friday, and I think the first one was last week. The next one is Sept. 2. I’m pleasantly disturbed enough to go out of cycle, being a week late or a week early. Or both.

I’m going to be doing one of those Teaching Company courses, this one on “Classics of British Literature.” It’s 48 lectures, by a professor who teaches at CalTech and the University of London. You could buy the CDs or the DVDs, and I opted for the CDs, to listen while I drive to and from work.

Several years ago, I got really hooked on these courses. When I was doing my independent consulting thing, I had one client about 40 miles south of St. Louis, and another one about a four-hour drive away, up in north central Missouri almost on the Iowa border. So going to and from these clients, I would listen to lectures on the history of Rome, the history of Greece and all kinds of other history and literature courses.

Sitting on my nightstand right now: Longing for Home by Frederick Buechner; the Book of Common Prayer; the new issue Poetry Magazine; Poiema: Poems by D.S. Martin; and my Kindle. What will likely be opened and read before I go to sleep tonight: the Buechner book and the Book of Common Prayer.
I’ve actually finished reading Poiema, but I’m going back and rereading some of the poems. They are good. It’s poetry with a strong religious or spiritual theme.

Last magazine I read: the new issue of Writer’s Digest.

Next magazine I’ll read: Poets & Writers.

I’m enjoying my Kindle. I’ve now read six books on it – a couple of suspense mysteries, two poetry collections, and two books on writing (one of which was Luci Shaw’s Breath for the Bones.) I like the Kindle – I like it a lot.

I just finished a big book. No, a humongous book – 650 pages. It’s called The Emperor of Lies by Steve Sem-Sandberg. It was published two years ago in Sweden and became a surprise best-seller. And it’s nothing like those Girl with the Dragon Tattoo books. It’s about the Holocaust and based on real people in the Jewish ghetto in Lodz, Poland during World War II. The author did a phenomenal amount of research, and the depth of the story shows it. My review will be posted next Tuesday.

Our youngest son spent the night with us Tuesday, on his way south. He’s transferring from Kansas City to Florida, and he’s all excited about it. And yes, we’re going through all the usual things parents go through when their adult children move away. I keep reminding myself that our oldest moved to Phoenix for a few years, got married, and came back to St. Louis in time to provide our first grandchild.

And speaking of Cameron (notice the clever transition), he’s getting big. He likes to dance with his grandmother, build Legos with his grandfather (and his grandfather loves Legos), and eat peaches and bananas. When the youngest was here Tuesday, we all went out to dinner, so I got a Cameron fix. Here’s a recent photo.

Photograph of Cameron Young by Stephanie Young, used because Cameron said I could.

Photograph of Pleasantly Disturbed swiped from Duane Scott’s blog, Scribing the Journey.


Sandra Heska King said...

You're doing some heavy reading! Love that Cameron. I'm glad he said you could use that photo. :)

Marcus Goodyear said...

So what kind of LEGOs do you build?

This post is fun, and oddly convicting. Our summer of personal madness is over and it is time to get serious about reading again.

(I'm reading The Living Dead, a new zombie anthology. It leaves me pleasantly disturbed every night.)

Maureen said...

Quite a mix of reading.

I can see Cameron has a firm hold on that pacifer. Does he twirl it around even while he talks? He's a sweetheart.

I once tried living in Florida because so many members of my family had gone there. I lasted less than six months. I was between jobs at the time so it was a good experiment in learning where home is.

Michael Dodaro said...

Here are some toys for Cameron and probably his grandfather when you guys graduate from legos.

Plug the parts together and program them on the computer.

We have several high school pilot programs underway. I hit the fun jackpot on this project! Next month I'm going to New York to play with about ten thousand other enthusiasts at Maker Faire.

Anonymous said...

i'm pleasantly disturbed
about how fast
is growing
up and rising
like a bubble
in child fun with
even though
i know
it will last
and last in a special
and forever way
i am just a little sad
when the bubble
floats away

Anonymous said...

Man, that is one cute kid.

Duane Scott said...

i love this post.

and i love nance's poem. ;)

Cameron, slow down!

S. Etole said...

You do "pleasantly disturbed" so well ... and that is one cute grandson!

H. Gillham said...

Love hearing what you are doing, and I can't believe how big Cameron is -- it's fun to be a part of his journey through you.


I haven't been to Duane's blog in forever.

So many blogs, so little time.

Louise Gallagher said...

I'm grateful your disturbed Friday has given me a disturbingly free Cameron fix! Soooo cute -- and Nance's poem says it all.

(and yes! My Shaw Internet is back online. The technician -- that spooky voice on the phone -- said -- hmmm.... looking at your feed, looks like we've got some glitch in the system in your area. it's so sporadic though it's not worth sending out a technician. Hello? Not worth a technician to get it working right? harumph! -- lol that is my disturbed rant for Saturday! :))