Weekend snapshots...books and boobs

So, here are some stories from my weekend -

My dear friends the Rushes lent me their truck so I could pick up a used lawnmower on Saturday. It was so much fun to drive the truck around in contrast to my little Tercel. But, on the way to their house, I-40 was shut down, so traffic slowed to a crawl as lanes merged. From the corner of my eye, I noticed an SUV next to me with a piece of paper taped in the backseat passenger window. I glanced over to see what it was. In badly written pen and ink, it said, "HONK IF YOU LIKE BOOBS". I looked slightly behind the paper, and there was the smirking teenage boy who had put it up. He was so smugly sure of his hilarity and his parents' ignorance of his crassness as they sat in the front seat. Hopefully at some point he'll learn that this is not the best way to get attention or to admire the female form. It was funny, but also made me give lots of kudos to the people who are trying to parent teenagers.

I cannot be trusted in a used book store.

I went to Bookman/Bookwoman after church to search for a present for my nephew Clint who just turned 18. I've been in a quandery about what to buy him, because I want it to be something meaningful and semi-permanent. Eighteen is a big year after all! But, we have such different tastes, and I don't want to completely miss him by giving him something that completely isn't him.

So I went to the animal/explorer/naturalist section of the store.

This is dangerous. Because I am so greedy to learn about animals myself. I quickly had a stack of five books for me, two for my dad, and two for Clint.

One was a 1950 edition of the Audubon field guide to birds with beautiful color illustrations. I really wanted it just for the vintage illustrations.

I narrowed my stash down with pain, but still spent a lot more on me than on Clint!

I found an old, large book of wild animal stories for kids with full color illustrations that are gorgeous. I can't wait to get some kids to sit still long enough for me to share them. (Katie - think the boys would like to hear them? I may need to babysit soon!) I might scan an image or two and post them so you can all see them.

Then, I got the second book in a series from a horse rescue ranch called Proud Spirit. My friend Beth gave me the first book last year and I loved it. The author shares stories about some of the horses they have rescued - what their abusive past was like, how they were rescued, and how they were rehabilitated in the peace and freedom of Proud Spirit. What I'm really amazed at is her husband! What an example of a generous spirited man.

The third and final book I allowed myself was James Herriott's Dog Stories. I can't wait to indulge in these stories and hug Sean afterwards.

Oh, 'and what did I get for Clint?' you ask?

I found two books for him. One is an illustrated collection of wild animal stories by Ernest Thompson Seton, who was one of the founders of the Boy Scouts, and an amazing artist and naturalist. It was called something like Animals I Have Hunted, which I thought would appeal to my nephew, who is very into hunting and fishing.

The other is Wild Thoughts from Wild Places. It looks very intriguing. It's a collection of essays from the author's experiences. These quotes from reviews on Amazon, where it garnered 5 stars,
make me want to read it, too! I hope they offer new landscapes for his mind and increase his knowledge of the wild world he loves:

From why so many zoos have white tigers to how whitewater resembles the human heart, David Quammen sees what the rest of us don't. Even better, he knows how to write lucidly about it.


I picked up 'Natural Acts' at the library's paperback book-swap. I only grabbed it because the first few pages seemed a bit humorous and witty. Upon further review, I realized that I was dealing with no ordinary author (if any of them can be called ordinary).

David Quammen has an unparalleled flair for putting nature in its place. By the end of 'Natural Acts' you'll be happily convinced that this world is as mystical and comical as you thought it was.

Some of my favorite topics in the book include (in my own words): The (exaggerated)Size of Anacondas, The Intelligent Crow, Why Are There So Many Damned Beetles?, and that whole 'Why Would Someone Drink Their Own Urine?' thing.

'Natural Acts' is a very intelligent and hilarious look at nature. I routinely recommend this book to anyone I find remotely interested in science.


Anonymous June 9, 2009 at 1:02 AM  

Cool Tina, that's quite a first post! So I've never met Sean, but I'm picturing him contently curled up next to you as you read Dog Stories :)

Tina B June 9, 2009 at 11:39 AM  

Thanks, David! Yes, Sean loves to curl up nearby when I read. The picture in the post is of Sean. It's too bad you haven't met him - he's awesome :)

KimS June 9, 2009 at 10:09 PM  

I'm drooling over the Audobon (sp wrong, I know) bird book... if, perchance, you begin tearing pages out to frame or something, and there's a Ivory-Billed Woodpecker page you don't particularly value, I know a certain soul who would be willing to do just about anything for it. (Okay, me.)


Glad to see you have a blog now, Tina; I'm adding you to my Google reader so I'll see when you update. Do you have the address to mine? (I rarely update, but hey... quid pro quo, even if mine's of little value.)

Juli June 11, 2009 at 11:00 AM  

Yay! Welcome to the blogosphere! I look forward to hearing your thoughts and musings.

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