Sunday, July 5, 2009

The Sunday Salon: Random Things

Blog Improvement Stuff:
I have decided that in the month of July that I would try to make changes that would improve the blog a little bit. The first most obvious change is the layout. For about a week now I have been searching the web for a three column layout that I liked and last night I found this one. I don't remember the site that I picked it up at but I think it is pretty cool. I love how the quotes are in their own little book. The only problem that I have with it is that one of the element (the sidebar gadget Recent Post) is not working and I don't know what to do.

Another way that I am going to try to improve the blog is to make the reviews a little less personal and more "scholarly". By that I mean I am going to try and not use "I" so much. No one has complained about the reviews but it is more so that I can practice my writing skills. Since I left college, they have become neglected.

Next week, I will think of a least one more change to make to the blog. Hopefully.

I doubt it is common knowledge but right now I live in the Miami area. And this week I just realised how cool the Miami-Dade county public library system is. First, the have a system were you can download movies, books, cds, and audiobooks from your home computer. I love it. I have only used the book and audiobook option but I think that system is really neat. I don't have to go online to request an audiobook just to discover when I get home that the first cd is so badly damaged that I can see through it. Yes that has happened to me before, with Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov.

I am now listening to Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher and I am enjoying it very much. It took me a little bit to get use to it. Now when I press play on my iPod I don't want to turn it off. The first time I played the audiobook, I was walking down to the farmer's market. I barely noticed the 30 minutes that went by. From there I went to the library and then home, for a total of 2 hours (walking). It did not seem that long and when I walked in the door, I had to force myself to stop the story.

Showing My Nerdiness (Breaking Dawn Spoiler Included):
Last night, I was talking to my roommate who enjoyed the Twilight Series. We started talking to about something and I told her that I had a problem with Breaking Dawn for many reasons but I also had issues with the science in the story. Mainly, Bella said that female vampires could not get pregnant because vampires bodies are frozen in time at the moment of their death. That having a baby required so many changes to the body therefore females couldn't get pregnant. If that is the case than how is it Edward was able to impregnate Bella. To produce sperm cells have to divide in order to split chromosome numbers. Men aren't born with sperm just stored away for future use (but women are born with all the eggs that they will ever produce). So, technically, based on what Bella said male vampires should be infertile and therefore her hybrid baby should never have been born.

It is not a major issue but it did bother the science major in me a lot. Because cell division (meiosis and mitosis) is basic general biology. I learned it in high school and then in college. My roommates who weren't science majors know it. How did Meyer's not know it? Or maybe it was just convenient to forget to fit her storyline.

Need of nerdy ranting.

I hope everyone enjoys their week and had a safe and Happy 4th of July (if you are in the USA).


  1. I've heard 13 Reasons Why is really good in audio. Though I've read it, I'm considering picking up the audio to experience it that way.

  2. My library has downloadable audiobooks too; I adore it! Lolita was so creepy on CD, so maybe it's a good thing it was scratched. ;)

  3. It is really good on audiobook. After I finish it I might try to actually read it for myself and see if I have the same experience.

  4. I am glad you told me that. I put the cds on hold (from another branch) and I am just waiting for them to come in.

    Is it the narrator that makes them creepy or the story in general?

  5. I'm still learning about all the wonderfully cool things at my libraries (I have cards for several!)

  6. Libraries just keep getting better and better. I love them. There is no way that I would be able to afford to buy an audiobook. But now I can just borrow on digitally from my library from the comfort of my home. How cool is that?

  7. It's creepy because the narrator is so convincing, you almost forget he's a pedophile. It's wonderful hearing all of Nabokov's plays with language aloud though. :)

  8. My library has the book version ready for me. So, I'll hold off on the audiobook for now.

    Thanks for the heads up.

  9. Funny, that's exactly what I'm trying to do now (making reviews more "formal" by using less "I"). LOL. While blog is fun and personal, I'd like to avoid making it like diary entries.

  10. Our library has the audiobook downloads, too. There aren't a lot of choices available, but I've used it a few times. It came in handy when I was working a data entry job and going through an audiobook a day!

    I'm trying to improve my reviewing skills, too, but not necessarily to make them more scholarly. As you can tell from the name of my blog (Average Girl Reads), I'm not trying to provide formal reviews. However, I do want to do a better job of providing enough information about the book without giving spoilers.