Celsius 233

Fahrenheit 451
Ray Bradbury

pg 60
"Luckily, queer ones like her don't happen often.  We known how to nip most of them in the bud, early.  You can't build a house without nails and wood.  If you don't want a house built, hide the nails and wood.  If you don't want a man unhappy politically, don't give him two sides to a question to worry him; give him one.  Better yet, give him none.  Let him forget there is such a thing as war.  If the government is inefficient, topheavy, and tax-mad, better it be all those than that people worry over it.  Peace, Montage.  Give the people contests they win by remembering the words to more popular songs or the names of state capitals or how much corn Iowa grew last year.  Cram them full of noncombustible data, chock them so damned full of 'facts' they feel stuffed, but absolutely 'brilliant' with information.  Then they'll feel they're thinking, they'll get a *sense* of motion without moving.  And they'll be happy, because facts of that sort don't change.  Don't give them any slippery stuff like philosophy or sociology to tie things up with.  The way lies melancholy.  Any man who can take a TV wall apart and put it back together again, and most men can, nowadays is happier than any man who tries to slide-rule, measure, and equate the universe, which just won't be measured or equated without making man feel bestial and lonely.  I know, I've tried it; to hell with it.  So bring on your clubs and parties, your acrobats and magicians, your daredevils, jet cars, motorcycle helicopters, your sex and heroin, more of everything to do with automatic reflex.  IF the drama is bad, if the film says nothing, if the play is hollow, sting me with the theremin, loudly.  I'll think I'm responding to the play, when it's only a tactile raction to vibration.  But I don't care.  I just like solid entertainment."

pg 71
"We cannot tell the precise moment when friendship is formed. As in filling a vessel drop by drop, there is at last a drop which makes it run over; so in a series of kindnesses there is at last one which makes the heart run over."

pg 89
The old man nodded.  "Those who don't build must burn.  It's as old as history and juvenile delinquents."
"So that's what I am."
"There's some of it in all of us."

pg 104
"Listen.  Easy now," said the old man gently.  "I know, I know.  You're afraid of making mistakes.  *Don't* be.  Mistakes can be profited b.  Man, when I was younger I *shoved* my ignorance in people's faces.  They beat with sticks.  By the time I was forty my blunt instrument had been honed to a fine cutting point for me.  If you hide your ignorance, no one will hit you and you'll never learn.  Now, pick up your feet, into the firehouse with you! ...

pg 156
Granger stood looking back with Montag.  "Everyone must leave something behind when he dies, my grandfather said.  A child or a book or a painting or a house or a wall built or a pair of shoes made.  Or a garden planted.  Something your hand touched some way so your soul has somewhere to go when you die, and when people look at that tree or that flower you planted, you're there.  It doesn't matter what you do, he said, as long as your change something from the way it was before you touched it into something that's like you after you take your hands away.  The difference between the man who just cuts lawns and a real gardener is in the touching, he said.  The lawn cutter might just as well not have been there at all; the gardener will be there a lifetime."

feet and ants

I like walking in bare feet.  I don't do it too often though, mostly in my back yard. You spend all day in sweaty socks and shoes so it's kinda nice to feel rough concrete on your feet.  You can have the grass and the heat burning into your soles and all the different textures.

There's a friend who ends up walking in bare feet to pubs etc.  Her boyfriend tells her off because of the glass but you always pay more attention to the ground so there's less chance of that.  I found an article on extreme barefoot running.  I like the bit where the guy learns how to remove deep thorns with a box cutter.  As a family, we seemed to move around a fair few times.  One time I remember walking around on the new footpath outside our new house and having sore feet for days.

The house I'm living in at the moment has ants.  They like to say hello whenever we leave out sticky cup prints or salads or anything really.  I have a few coffee cup circles near my bed and I used to wake up to the sight of a couple of ants running around.  Unfortunately it got a bit too messy in the kitchen so I had to put some surface spray around.  I haven't seen any ants around for a few days.  I left a few dead ones around as a warning to the rest of them

New years resolutions?

Okay, I've been thinking about this lately and came up with a list on a back of an envelope. Why is it I can never find paper but there's always a ripped open envelope somewhere?
  • Make an effort to talk to people about non-trivial things.  No, "ooh its hot today".  How do start off with this though.
  • Exercise?  No smoking, less drinking.. more veggie tables.
  • Moving on from that... stop buying junk food and actually make dinner.
  • Practice guitar at least 15 minutes a day.
  • Better sleeping habits.  10pm-6am?
  • Decide what to do with life.  Do different things.  Capitalise on the skills I have.  (programming? engineering degree?) Sell things just lying around that don't really help with this.
  • Do not criticise people.  Perhaps only to their face.
  • Wear business like clothes to work.
  • Think about things before I act upon them.
  • Strengthen the mind.  Are there things that help with memory and speech?
  • Read more.
  • Fix handwriting.
  • Be kind to animals.  Not to say that I go around kicking dogs but to actually make an effort to be nice to them.
Any thoughts?  Most of these are common sense and should really be more habits than an actual resolution.
  • Current Music
    Joanna Newsom

Died of bad water pressure

We have a small water cylinder at macquarie street. It tries its best but it just can't handle two consecutive hot showers. This led to Matt having a shower before he goes to bed and for Cassie and I to try and shower at the same time in the morning. Despite these precautions, we always seem to run out. Well it always seems to run out when I'm in the shower. It always reminds me of this bit from Frasier where he is convinced to run for condo board president. (took me ages to find the transcript)

    Man: We would like you to be our candidate to go up against her 
         in the upcoming elections.
Frasier: Well, I'm very flattered, but you see...
    Man: You are our only chance, Dr. Crane, and she must be defeated. 
         [carried away] She is evil!  Heckles in 1704 was two days 
         late with his condo fee and she lowered the water pressure 
         in his shower.  Eventually he died.
Frasier: Of bad water pressure?
    Man: No, I think it was a hunting accident.  But he spent his last 
         months on this earth unable to get all the conditioner out 
         of his hair.  Only you posses the charisma and courage to 
         defeat her.


Fortunately, I don't use conditioner.
do you feel like a flame grilled burger?

Tracking what you read

I've decided I watch too much tv (even if most of it is downloaded or off youtube) and want to move back to books. I used to read a lot as a kid but not so much now. I read in an article that if you want to exercise regularly, it helps if you keep track in a diary. I might try the same for my reading.

I've made a quick list in excel with all the books on my shelf (read and unread) but I wonder if there's a site like last.fm for the written word. last.fm works by installing a plugin in winamp. It sends the title of every song you play to its site and at the end of each week, it can give you recommendations on other music.

Does anyone else do anything like this? I'm really interested in getting smart recommendations. I'm trying for a web interface if possible (since I'm assuming it would be easier to match that data against other users)

For the record, I started reading some detective novels I borrowed from the library. I'm starting with "The Big Sleep" by Raymond Chandler but I have some Agatha Christie and a collection of Sherlock Holmes...

Some research so far:

Book tracking (sorted by rough Alexa traffic rank)
http://www.librarything.com/ (8,397)
http://www.shelfari.com/ (9,008) (very new though.. )
http://www.listal.com/ (61,280)
http://www.delicious-monster.com/ (87,832)
http://www.whatshouldireadnext.com/ (115,524)
http://reader2.com/ (288,899)
http://www.douban.net/ (313,623)
http://www.bookswelike.net/ (674,693)
http://www.bibliophil.org/ (760,899)
http://www.storycode.com/ (1,263,359)
http://www.connectviabooks.com/ (1,701,735)
(I could probably sort by google pagerank or maybe number users or books if I could find that info)

Some recommended book lists
http://recommendedreading.suite101.com/
http://www.bbc.co.uk/london/content/articles/2006/05/10/quick_read_feature.shtml
http://readingforradicals.com/

other
http://www.bookcrossing.com/ - where does your book go?
http://www.bookfinder.com/ - book searches
http://www.alibris.com/ - book searches
http://www.dailylit.com/ - read books via email?