I wrote yesterday that I was 39 pages into Jessica Weiner’s A Very Hungry Girl (beware: affiliate link!).
I went ahead and finished it last night.
I’ll admit that I was a little disappointed by the book, as it soon began to describe Weiner’s work in far more detail than her personal struggles. It became — to a certain degree — more about “stuff” than “people”, even though her work as a writer, director, and performer of motivational works is very much about people. But we went from a nitty-gritty view of her world and the people around her to a 1000-foot view of her work. Even the occasional mention of her struggles with eating didn’t really return us to the trenches.
As I wrote yesterday, I went into the book without many expectations, but I found I’d built them rapidly within those first 40 pages. I expected a story about the author more so than about her work.
The very end of the book contains bits of guidance toward leading a fuller, more satisfying life, for varying definitions of those words. Weiner repeats advice I’d heard from my own therapist — you can’t live well avoiding your emotions and problems. The only way to get past them is to go through them.
That’s hard. That’s something I still struggle with, in part due to the fact that one of the key people I talk to about my issues — WO — has such a different life history than me. It’s hard to be emotional about an experience when you’re struggling just to relate the basic concepts and to deal with someone else’s shock about the fact that traumatic things happen to real-live people.
We are a culture so desensitized to violence, sex, sexual violence, and general suffering that I’m rather curious as to how someone who regularly takes in television and movies feels reading the first half of this book. For example, can you regularly watch and find entertaining a show like The Biggest Loser and still feel the pain of the people in the book who are also doing such extreme things to their bodies? Do the people on TBL not seem to be “ill” because they have some doctor’s approval to do what they do to their bodies?
Links for April 25th from 15:30 to 20:48:
Links for April 17th from 17:33 to 19:07:
The upgrade to WordPress 2.5 meant that my plugin for posting links went away for a while. There may be a duplicate or two towards the bottom of this list, but I have culled it a bit.
- Big, Brass Ones: Threat Level exploits cross-site scripting bug on CIA.gov – Boing Boing Gadgets – This is pretty dang slick. I need to find out how they've done that, exactly.
- Twenty Sided » Blog Archive » JC Denton: Not Just a Tough Guy – The clothing of Deus Ex. "I felt ridiculous having these philosophical and political conversations while dressed as a Morpheus cosplayer."
- The Swamp: Obama: Won't ask, don't mind tellin' – Obama doing an interview with an LGBT magazine. The format of this article is awful, but I especially liked his stance that it's not the gov't's place to tell folks to "wait for [their] equality" with regards to marriage. Pragmatic, yet progressive.
- Still Alive? She?s Free. – If you've ever played Portal, this post may interest you. It's a look at the imagery of GlaDOS when you finally see her, and what the developers may have been trying to convey. Good stuff, and includes a nice drawing by the author.
- Front-Ahead Design – The Daily WTH – "If you?re not familiar with FAD, then you?ve been missing out. […] Not only does it surpass every other software development methodology out there, it solves every problem there is to building software."
- Get Off Your Butt: 16 Ways to Get Motivated When You?re in a Slump – The title says it all. I'm in a bit of one of these slumps myself, and am giving myself a kick in the pants.
ZTD Habit 1: Collect | Zen Habits
I like his reasoning for going analog in capturing input. In the last week, I’ve misplaced two styluses for my PDA, rendering it unhelpful in capturing data. A stack of index cards would take up about the same amount of space and be less frustrating.
Kids’ how-to-cheat videos – Boing Boing
Wow — I never put this much energy into cheating, even when I did cheat back in early high school. I always just cheated out of laziness — I didn’t feel like doing the homework, so I’d copy the work. The discussion after the article is fun, too.
The Pros and Cons of Working at Home
I wouldn’t mind having a job where I worked from home. I’ve found that if I structure my social life well enough, I can work at home, alone for decently long periods. Plus, I get to be nekkid, exercise mid-morning, and play loud music.
Drowning in debt, he needs a life raft – Los Angeles Times
This dismays me to no end. He needs his expensive-ass truck to drive his time-shared boat. He spends $300 a month on eating out. Just… wow. How can he smile in that photo? How can he sleep at night?
Zen To Done (ZTD): The Ultimate Simple Productivity System | Zen Habits
This is a tastee set of modifications to Getting Things Done that offers more (or less) structure. It fits a different personality type, or people with a different goal in life. I’m not sure yet, but I like some of the modifications.
Lazy Productivity: 10 Simple Ways to Do Only Three Things Today | LifeRemix Blog
One nice idea here is picking the three things that must get done the night before — it allows it to percolate in your brain overnight so you wake up with a sense of purpose.
Half of Me: I support your right to look good
“I’d like to go on the record right now and say I fully support vanity as a reason to lose weight. No, it’s not the best reason to take off the pounds, but it gets a bad rep. Doesn’t everyone like to feel pretty? What’s so wrong with that?”
Neuroscience: One Pill Makes You Autistic — And One Pill Changes You Back
This rather creeps me the hell out. Reading articles about people casually flicking on and off parts of their brain via drugs makes me think of movies like Bladrunner and other cyberpunk-ish stories and setting. *shudder*