Great Opening Sentences in Science Fiction

“I lived long enough to see the cure for death; to see the rise of the
Bitchun Society, to learn ten languages; to compose three symphonies;
to realize my boyhood dream of taking up residence in Disney World; to
see the death of the workplace and of work.” – Cory Doctorow, Down And Out In The Magic Kingdom.

There’s a nice list of Sci Fi opening sentences up at io9.com. I haven’t read many of them, and I think there’s a few I’ll pick up because of this page.

via boing boing

Things I love today…

  1. The rice crispy treat I got this morning at the Nervous Dog coffeeshop
  2. The Far Side comic on the wall of the Nervous Dog
  3. Chuck, who rode his motorcycle this morning and gave me a lift
  4. Erin, who told us where to get Hip Work Shirts for Chuck (Nordstrom Rack – Colma)
  5. My mom, who sent me a package of old Beekeeping books and embroidery
  6. The coffee I drank, which prompted me to write this

Rearranging the books, playlists

I can’t sort out my head properly, so I’m sorting my books. Plover the cat and I are drinking red wine and water, respectively, and pacing the apartment listening to Motown.

I’m rearranging my books.

I’ve you’ve read Nick Hornsby’s book High Fidelity or seen the movie, you might remember Rob rearranging his record collection. Today is sort of that, but without the breakup.

When I have something big on my mind, usually related to self-definition, I become more interested in music and stories.

The music I listen to becomes Important. The books on my shelves become Me. I download. I read. I sort. I fuss and swap and graze over my books, looking for the right system. And through this, somehow, I describe myself to myself. Whatever is going on in my head benefits from the organization I’m doing with my hands.

I externalize this stuff because it’s easier than neurosurgery and cheaper than therapy.

Behold my books. They are arranged by priority, then color.

Library Tourism

bernallib.pngI visited my local Bernal Heights library branch this afternoon, in search of a place to sit and read. It turned out to be one of the last weeks the building is open before it closes for an extensive renovation. On a kid-filled sunny spring Saturday, the current building gives the impression of being a community center rather than a library, with more conversations, computers, and chaos than visible books.

I’m looking forward to the new design. The neighborhood obviously is drawn to the location, which swirls with families out walking dogs and babies.

— — — —

Things I’m currently researching…

  • Wedding venues in the Detroit area that are:
    • Non-religious
    • Interesting-looking or unusual
    • Cheap, cheap, cheap!
  • Things to do in Brighton, UK
  • Search Engine Optimization
  • Cat grooming (did you know you can use baby powder to make your cat less itchy?)
  • Better WordPress plugins (I’m playing with a new Twitter sidebar)
  • Management jobs in SF for my sweetie Chuck this summer

Introducing a 7-year-old to the concept of “library”

Modern Day Prometheus or why my boyfriend is the greatest guy ever. Can you believe I get to kiss this man?

My first question was a slightly judgmental “where were his parents during all of this?”

adobe-orange-yellow.jpgI’m remembering week after week of library visits when I was a kid. We didn’t have any money, but we had all the books we wanted. My first library card was at age, what? four?

Apparently the parents were there checking out videos. Hopefully they will return.

An Interview with Myself

Bowing to the demands of my own powerful curiosity, I have agreed to a give an exclusive interview to myself. My publicist disagrees with my decision, but I believe I have a strong connection with myself and I think I can be trusted to report my answers fairly.

tat3.jpgQ: Hello Erica. I’m glad you agreed to this interview. You have been pretty reticent with the press lately. What’s been going on?

A: There have been major changes in my life this year. I haven’t felt it was appropriate or respectful to write about them here.

Things have settled down a bit recently. I’m no longer engaged, and I’m living in rural Ithaca near some friendly horses and sheep.

Q: Wow. Do you want to talk about what happened?

A: No. Thank you.

Q: I hear you are moving to the Bay Area in the next few months?

A: I’ve been looking at the Bay Area and NYC as possible places to relocate. After visiting last week, I decided to move to San Francisco.

San Francisco is one of the geekiest, friendliest places I’ve ever been. The city is beautiful, I’ve got good friends, there are interesting projects, and I’ll be among my fellow dorks.

I’m really looking forward to learning the city, starting a new job, volunteering at 826 Valencia, and being immersed in the calm, weird, sunny West Coast atmosphere. Come visit. Bring chocolate babka.

Q: Where are you going to work?

A: An excellent question. I’ve interviewed at a few places where I would like to work. I will know more by next week. Stay tuned.

Q: Don’t you like Ithaca?

A: I love Ithaca and I adore my job at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, which is why I’ve been here for four years.

However, that translates to about 40 years in Internet Time. It’s time for me to start a new project. I might return to Ithaca someday, once I’ve made my fortune. I’d like to live on a big farm with dogs, books, a wood stove, and all my friends.

Q: Ok. That covers the big topics. What else is going on?

A: I’m having the best year of my life. This weekend I swam in a waterfall, watched a turtle lay eggs, drove a sports car really fast, petted dogs, helped a friend find tractor parts, drank local beer, picked flowers, was charged by a deer, and met one of the first US African refugee coordinators who was working in Botswana in 1965.

Q: Well, thanks again for letting me interview you, Erica.

A: I’m welcome. Thank me.

14 Weird things I’ve learned this week

  1. Queen Bees are expensive
  2. It’s damned difficult to find a cat-sitter in Ithaca
  3. Johnathan Lethem’s You Don’t Love me Yet is, so far, an absolutely perfect book
  4. Tom Phillips is an artist who did a really great book painting featuring fictional books with titles stolen from Shakespeare
  5. Roccapulco is a salsa club in San Francisco. I’m going next week with my friend Jake
  6. The Lunch Meeting is the gold standard for interviews at eBay
  7. Oldschool Metadata

  8. You can randomly teleport somewhere in Second Life and end up getting juggled by a large pink elephant
  9. Hotels in San Francisco are way cheaper than hotels in NYC. Jobs in San Francisco pay way better than jobs in NYC.
  10. All it took for me to get my finances in shape was to get some software with a decent interface
  11. The only cure for pregnancy-induced hypertension is childbirth (hi clay!)
  12. My friend Josh has taken over things digital at the NYPL
  13. Adobe CS3 will steal your soul with its compelling beauty
  14. Google Analytics has a new interface that will steal whatever bit of your soul is leftover after Adobe gets done with you
  15. Half of you people are still using Internet Explorer. I’m saddened. Please, for the love of all things holy: Use