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On the Importance of being Forthwith (08 Feb 2006 at 13:30)
Yesterday on my way to Sarah's PhD defense celebration (congrats!!) I stopped by Cortney's house because I thought she was going to be there but she wasn't there yet so I hung out with Allison, but Allison was working on her statistics so I picked a book off the shelf to read. I chose Everything is Illuminated because it has been variously recommended to me by friends. I must say, friends, you have let me down variously: When there is a book that is so obviously up my alley, rather than be like, Tom, I think you'd really enjoy this book, you should instead thrust the book into my hands, open to the first page, and say, Tom, you must put these words in your eyes forthwith. Only words like forthwith can make me actually read books these days, or else being somewhere where I oughtn't be disturbing my friend who is working on her Statistics except that I had to stop reading on page six because I felt that my stifled laughing out loud like through my clenched teeth biting my index finger was in fact disturbing her. So I am only on page six but this book is totally next in line; move over, Tooth Imprints on a Corn Dog.

I got a call this morning from a programmer for Muse. Isn't it great that bands have programmers now? (Okay, in this sense programmer means like MIDI sequencing and effects, but the thought of literal computer programming is much funnier to me.)

Speaking of music, sorry "Major Label Debut (fast)" but the winner for my favorite song of January 2006 is "She Has No Strings" by the Dirty Three. The violin playing is just microtonally brilliant, reminiscent to me of when Morrissey sings "oh, I say" in "Some Girls are Bigger than Others." Like, out of tune but so perfectly out of tune. Good one, kids.
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Jessica 8 (nelson-laptop.lrdc.pitt.edu) – 02.08.06 13:52:47
Oh yeah, everyone keeps telling me to read that book too! Okay, well just mainly one person. Or actually only one person. And she only told me like once. But I did also read the first few pages and decide I should read it. But then I didn't. But then you reminded me, so maybe I will now. Thanks!
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Cortney (chiggins.ce.cmu.edu) – 02.08.06 14:26:30
Did you take it with you? You should have, but remind me and I'll pass it along to you. Yay! I'm glad you liked it! I'm looking forward to reading his second book "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close" (?). I read the first three pages of that and found myself laughing a great deal. I might also recommend "A History of Love" (cough, a terrible title, I know), by Nicole Krauss. She's Foer's wife and a gifted writer all her own.
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Sridhar (cmu-155125.res.cmu.edu) – 02.08.06 15:04:29
Did the programmer for Muse call to talk to you about literal computer programming? Because that would be funniest to me.
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Tom 7 (gs82.sp.cs.cmu.edu) – 02.08.06 15:54:06
J: Do you think you can be #8 by just saying it? Because it doesn't make it true.

C: I left a bookmark in it, but I still feel like I have to finish Infinite Jest (which I am totally enjoying, it's just... really long) first. I think that I don't read books with "history" or "love" in their titles, which means that Krauss's book might be in double trouble, but if you stick it in front of my eyes and say forthwith, it might still happen.

S: Sort of. He wanted to know about some destroyfx software, but it wasn't one of my plugins (Sophia, did you get his mail?) so I couldn't really help him. He did seem kind of interested in plugin programming and Max/MSP kind of stuff though. If only he were like, "What multiparidigm typed programming language should I write my next certifying compiler in?"
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Max (mheath.stu.wesleyan.edu) – 02.08.06 18:29:11
I knew Muse were a slick machine, but I didn't realize they were actually programmed!
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jcreed (pool-70-20-101-91.pitt.east.verizon.net) – 02.08.06 19:27:30
Cortney: I have a copy of Extremely/Incredibly if you want to borrow it. It is a pretty good book, albeit very sad.
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Cortney (pool-70-17-168-123.pitt.east.verizon.net) – 02.08.06 19:31:42
Thanks Jason ... once I finish Last Samurai (only 100 pages left to go!) I would love to borrow it.
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Adam 3000 (pool-70-20-77-210.pitt.east.verizon.net) – 02.08.06 23:40:34
Can I have this number
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Tom 7 (h-72-244-70-225.phlapafg.dynamic.covad.net) – 02.09.06 00:01:51
Adam, it is already taken by Andre 3000.

CJ & JC: You two should swap books, because I bet Jason would like Last Samurai too. And then it's like, collateral. ;)
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Moira Ω (c-67-186-34-158.hsd1.pa.comcast.net) – 02.09.06 09:35:40
And after that, you should read Zadie Smith's "White Teeth," which is the only book in the whole wide universe that I like more than "Everything."

Before I knew Jonathan Safran Foer was married I used to fantasize that he and Zadie Smith would end up together and produce ridiculously smart kids. Or at least co-authored novels.
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Tom 7's new name is awesome (some.crazy.host.org) – 02.09.06 09:35:59
I made this comment just so I could test my ability to edit it with some new jazz behind the scenes.

My comment was perturbed by editing with jazz.

It's beautiful!

OMG awesome!
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Cortney (chiggins.ce.cmu.edu) – 02.09.06 09:50:24
Moira: Before I found out he was married, I fantasized that we would meet and fall madly in love .... he's a vegetarian! But maybe he and Nicole Krauss will have an amazing kid, ala Last Samurai?
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allison (pool-70-20-83-214.pitt.east.verizon.net) – 02.09.06 13:14:21
you weren't disturbing me. I was half looking for a clip of the immaculate reception if you recall. Anyway, I'm glad my half-assed attempt at working led you to finding a new book!
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moira (burke.hcii.cs.cmu.edu) – 02.09.06 16:49:05
Cortney: Secretly, I had the same fantasy. But I thought Zadie's odds were better . . . something about being close friends with Salman Rushdie just makes her really hot. Much hotter than I am.

Did you read his article in Real Simple last year about vegetarianism? My favorite line is one he borrows from Mark Twain -- that "becoming a vegetarian is easy. I have become a vegetarian at least once a month."

(If you have a Carnegie Library card, you can read the whole glorious article here: http://search.epnet.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=f5h&an=16571972)
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jcreed (pool-70-20-118-164.pitt.east.verizon.net) – 02.13.06 00:57:34
omg JC-CJ duality???
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Tom 7 (h-72-244-70-225.phlapafg.dynamic.covad.net) – 02.13.06 10:07:18
Amazing right???
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