Sexy Books: Thinking About It Only Makes It Worse by David Mitchell

Just read: Thinking About It Only Makes It Worse. And Other Lessons from Modern Life by David Mitchell.

Ever since I started watching Would I lie to you David Mitchell has become one of my favourite comedians. He is relatably awkward (relatable to me, that is) and his jokes are just so profound and smart that I almost pee myself when he brings them on!

IMG_20160302_200237So you can imagine how excited I was when I found his new book lying underneath the christmas tree last year! The blur:

«Why is every film and TV programme a sequel or a remake?
Why are people so f***ing hung up about swearing?
Why do the asterisks in that sentence make it ok?
Why do so many people want to stop other people doing things, and how can they be stopped from stopping them?

These and many other questions trouble David Mitchell. Join him on a tour of the absurdities of modern life – from Ryanair to Richard III, Downton Abbey to phone etiquette, UKIP to hotdogs made of cats. Funny, provocative and shot through with refreshing amounts of common sense, Thinking About It Inly Makes It Worse celebrates and commiserates on the state of things in our not entirely glorious modern world.»

What I loved about the book was that David Mitchell really comments on a big number of topics that I either find myself thinking about in everyday life or that have been bothering me for quite some time on a more serious level. Like Harry Potter (which is something I‘m never not thinking of!); David Mitchell is not a huge fan himself, and although that is a hard thing to forgive, what he writes about the Harry Potter fans is so, so true:

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Something (very unrelated to Harry Potter) that I have been hellbent on defending ever since I saw a documentary about it on New Zealand television, is pole dancing. I can‘t even remember what the documentary said that was so enlightning, but I would have taken up pole dancing right there and then – had it not been for the fact that I was only fifteen and no one would let me. Quite to my delight David Mitchell has an opinion about pole dancing as well, but it‘s not the one I originally held. He describes a course offer at Cambridge University that wants to teach young women the art of pole dancing. I thought that sounded pretty cool, until I read the following paragraph:

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Yaaayy, feminism! Whoohooo! I like this example because it underlines what he‘s trying to show the reader throughout the entire book – that everything has multiple sides to it and we shouldn‘t agree with something all too easily. At least, that‘s what I figured upon finishing it.

I must say I thought the book would be way funnier, and was then surprised to see that David Mitchell is just too smart. He comments a lot on politics and historical events which are a bit hard to understand or relate to if you‘re not from the UK. Because the books consists almost entirely of columns he‘s written for The Observer many of the topics and jokes would have to be put in context.

But having said that, the writing is incredible, and I did laugh a lot; it‘s nowhere near boring! You also don‘t have to read the whole thing in one go, the chapters are so short you can read one while having a dump! (way to praise a book, I know!) I loved it and before I let you go, here‘s one last quote:

(this is the picture he‘s commenting on, and showing you this saves me a whole paragraph of typing)

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Lots of love from the roots of my heart!
xxx
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Last But Not Least: Day Eight

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I saw where Shakespeare was born today and I also saw his grave.
The sign in the Christmas Shop told me that it is only 137 more sleeps until Christmas. That makes 126 more sleeps until my birthday. I had a waffle the size of my head. I found Harry Potter in a secondhand bookstore. It was all wonderful.

So many things happen between morning and night, and we could never capture all the sensations and feelings and words and different tastes of chocolate. But there is a lifetime in a day; maybe Shakespeare, too, saw light in a stranger’s eyes and maybe he, too, counted the sleeps to Christmas Day.

A Family Dinner

There is this Taylor Swift song called The Best Day where she describes different stages of her childhood, and when I look back on mine I find this song to pretty much sum up my life. Of course, there were a few rough patches, and there will always be, but having a loving and caring family means that there will always be a new Best Day.

Tobias, my baby brother, moved out two weeks ago because he has a proper job and a shit load of money, so you see, he‘s nothing like me – and it should feel weird, but, you know, I kinda enjoy not sharing the bathroom any more!

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Tonight we had him over for the first time since he moved and it was such a lovely evening. I made a pineapple-kumara salad and risotto, and it was surprisingly delicious, considering that I never cook. My family is slowly turning vegan (although we can‘t quite let go of Nutella) and I took the recipe straight out of Vegan Lovestory, a beautiful vegan cook book I got my mum for her birthday.

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I like having my family together and listening to their stories about work and friends and idiots they met at the supermarket. Our favourite topic is my mum‘s trouble with her work computer, because she has to phone the IT-company about once a week and then practically tells them what to do. We always joke that they must be pretty terrified when the phone rings because they have started giving her administrative rights, even though they are not technically allowed to do that.

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So there you go, a little insight in my friday night. I know it‘s not the most exciting thing to talk about ever, but it‘s what matters most to me in the world, and I like people knowing.

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Oooohh, and I must also tell you that tomorrow I am going to watch all of Season 9 of Doctor Who! I haven‘t seen one single episode of the new series, and you will not believe how excited I am! This is my christmas, I swear!

Lots of love from the roots of my heart!
xxx

Blogmas (Day 25) – «Simply Having A Wonderful Christmas Time!»

Merry Christmas Everyone!

I‘ll be leaving you with a short last post for this wonderful Blogmas night, seeing as it takes up all my strength not to finish Giovanna Fletcher‘s Dream a Little Dream right now!

Today‘s been the first day in months that I didn‘t have to get up at eight and head off to work or uni or my desk. Instead I took it slow, got up at nine and made Christmas cookies in my jammies while my mum fixed her Christmas Day with her boyfriend. Around midday Tobias and I headed over to our dad‘s house, almost missing the train – but then again, what is Christmas without a race through a busy main station, right?

We had pasta for lunch because my wonderful stepmum just knows her picky eaters well, then stuffed ourselves with the Red Velvet Cake I made for my dad‘s birthday a few days back. Opening the presents was as exciting as ever, especially as I didn‘t expect anything! My dad and his wive already got me an (almost) new MacBook and as a (wannabe) writer I couldn‘t have asked for a better gift! However, they still managed to whisk up a book series that I didn‘t know and that‘s right up my street. It‘s called The School for Good and Evil by Soman Ghainani, and part of the reason why I want to finish reading Dream a Little Dream so much is that I can start on this one. Oh, the agony!

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Of course nobody had as much fun tearing off paper as my niece did. And finally, when all the excitement of that was gone I kept walking around the richly decorated Christmas tree with her and discovering all the gorgeous little ornaments and baubles with her. It‘ a wonder, really, that she didn‘t knock any of it down!

To finish this grand day off we watched Three Gifts for Cinderella, my all time favourite Christmas movie, and The Rise of the Guardians (am I the only who‘d totally hit Jack Frost?!). Now I‘m sitting on the couch by myself and taking in the Christmas atmosphere. It‘s smelling of gingerbread and sugar cookies and chocolate and blown out candles. It‘s quiet with all the giggles and music having faded away and it‘s peaceful. It‘s me and my books, and I think that looking back on all of my Christmases, it‘s always been that – me and my books having a little Christmas party when everyone else has disappeared into their own beds.

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I hope everyone has had an amazing Christmas and I‘m sending out virtual hugs to all of you!

Lots of love from the roots of my heart!
xxx

Don’t forget to wish a Merry Christmas to Anna who has been an amazing Blogging partner this Christmas season! You find her blog over on http://www.tinytrinket.wordpress.com. This will certainly not be our last project together seeing as we booked a trip to London – and how could I ever visit London and not blog about it, right?!

Blogmas (Day 24) – Christmas Eve Celebration

Happy Christmas Eve everyone!

I have just had the loveliest Christmas Dinner with my family. We went to my grandmother‘s house as we do most years because out of all of us she cooks the best. Also, in contrast to my mum and me, she‘s quite well organised. She‘d made a vegetarian lasagna and I brought a butterscotch roulade for dessert. My family loves eating, so dinner was clearly a highlight of the evening. We usually go to church after opening the presents, but this year we took our time singing Christmas carols, my mum read us two stories, then we each took turns opening our presents.

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I feel so blessed having been able to spend another Christmas with the people I hold dearest. It‘s such a privilege to be alive and well and happy. I was also given amazing presents, and I realise that that, too, is not something to be taken for granted. To wish for something and to just get it, that‘s a huge wonder in itself and I‘m amazed to have been so lucky all my life. Even when times were not as good as they are now, my parents always gave my brother and me everything they could.

I don‘t care if I get a laser sword next year or if somebody buys me an Around-the-World ticket, all I‘ll ever want is this: my family gathered around the tree and laughing until tears flow.

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Tomorrow Tobias and I will be spending Christmas with our dad and our adopted patchwork family which will probably include even more eating. I can‘t wait!

Lots of love from the roots of my heart!
xxx

Blogmas (Day 23) – Blogger Gift Exchange

Hello Lovelies!

Today Anna (aka my Blogmas partner in crime aka Tiny Trinket on http://www.tinytrinket.wordpress.com) and I exchanged our Christmas presents. It wasn‘t a proper exchange, because I was in the book shop working and she just dropped hers and then had to commit to an odyssey through the store because I had put mine behind a colleague‘s counter on another floor. According to the messages I received I assume she found it, though!

I love opening presents. I don‘t care whether they‘re big or small and I certainly don‘t expect people to get me anything – but I love opening presents so much that sometimes , when I buy something for myself, I have it gift wrapped. So when I had the bag of wrapped up goodies at my feet this afternoon at work I was feeling downright giddy. Anna got my so many exciting things I really can‘t wait to share them with everyone (on the internet. Not in real life. Let‘s not get carried away, okay?)

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The most amazing thing is the Frozen muesly she got me. I have a half finished box already in my kitchen, but yay! I was feeling put off because it‘s so delicious and I keep telling myself that I must not buy stuff just because Olaf is on it. But now Christmas is saved!

Then she got me a pasta measuring thing that gives spagetthi the shape of a unicorn. Again, magical!

And lastly she added a recipe book called Vintage Teatime Recipes. If you‘ve read my About page you‘ll know that I love the English culture, so this is just pure awesomeness! I‘ll be making scones for the better part of next year!

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This just goes to show how well Anna knows me, and I‘m so psyched about the whole unwrapping process that I‘ve just been through! A huge thank you is definitely in order (thankyouthankyouthankyouthankyou!). If you want to know what I got her pop over to her blog on www.tinytrinket.wordpress.com where she‘s already uploaded pictures!

Lots of love from the roots of my heart!
xxx

Blogmas (Day 22) – Daddy’s Girl

Hellooo!

My dad turned half a century today, and that is a cause to celebrate!
Tobias and I went over to his house after work, just in time for dessert (we‘re always in time for dessert!) and spent the evening talking over a hot cup of tea and eating tons of cake and cookies.

2015-12-23 02.05.50 Something I will aways adore about my dad‘s and his wive‘s household is how utterly geeky and pink it is. They love to decorate, so during Christmas time it just looks so much like Santa‘s house. They are massive Disney fanatics and can spend hours discussing Star Wars. My dad once actually kept me entertained for an hour straight by talking about Lord of the Rings characters peeing (because it just bothered me that it is never mentioned in the books – like, in Harry Potter you know there are bathrooms, but in LotR do they just go behind the trees? Do they have plumbing in Rivendell?!). Obviously the present he got from us was just as nerdy, and I would highly recommend it to anyone who has a geek father – namely two books called Darth Vader and Son and Vader‘s Little Princess by Jeffrey Brown. They‘re little comics that show Darth Vader‘s life as a committed father to twins. I thought it was accurate because my dad obviously identified with Darth Vader a lot and I idolised Princess Leia (she is so hardcore, yeah!). 

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It‘s only  three more days until Christmas! Whoohhooo! Go see what Anna‘s favourite Christmas memory is over on her blog: www.tinytrinket.wordpress.com. I haven’t read it either, so you‘ll be joined by me… in a way… I suppose, right?

Lots of love from the roots of my heart!
xxx

Here’s my absolute favourite picture from Vader’s Little Princess btw!

Source: www.thinkgeek.com
Source: http://www.thinkgeek.com

Blogmas (Day 21) – A Christmas Memory

Last friday I had actually planned on writing about a lovely Christmas memory – which I didn‘t do because I was so psyched about the new Star Wars movie (still am, but MOVING ON!). Although I used to call rainy weather «Star Wars Weather» when I was little (because I was not allowed to watch telly when the sun was out), there are of course better holiday memories to tell you about.

The one that has stuck with me the most is from when I was about seven years old. It was a few days before Christmas Day and my dad, who‘s a reverend, took me to a Christmas Party in the woods. This is something quite traditional in Switzerland and not as creepy as it sounds. Basically people working at church gather somewhere in a forest and decorate a tree, there‘s a little sermon and you sing Christmas carols. My dad was in the organising committee and quite spontaneously took me along. I just remember that sort of magical feel, standing in a dark forest and holding a candle and being a little, shining light. I felt so small and so big and so much a part of the world around me.

At the end there were presents and I was given a Tarzan picture book. The Disney movie had just come out and I loved that book so much. I read it over and over again on the train later that night. And then I wondered what would happen if I stuck a piece of the apple I was eating up my nose – and, being me, I simply tried. And then Tarzan landed on the floor and I was crying because I could not get the darn thing out of my nose.

We went to my grandparents‘ house for the night and I remember being taken in by my grandmother. She had been waiting up and, having removed all fruity remains from my nose, I felt so safe and wrapped up. My bed was already made and I think I fell asleep on the way from the porch to the guest room, and closing my eyes was so easy and harmless because arms would always catch me and carry me, and somebody would always tuck me in.

Now I feel I sometimes forget the light that I once felt I was, and I forget that just because I have to tuck myself in now there will always be arms to catch me.

Lots of love from the roots of my heart!
xxx

Anna’s blog turned 1 yesterday, so everyone, please go and congratulate her/it! You find her on http://www.tinytrinket.wordpress.com. Her blog’s amazing, as is she! 🙂

Also, here’s a song that reminds me of that Christmas!

Blogmas (Day 20) – Christmas in Godric’s Hollow

So, I have been thinking, you know, I collect the plushy Disney Princesses, right? Is there a Leia one? Does she count as a Disney Princess yet? Oh, the questions that haunt a student‘s mind!

Moving on! I‘ve just come home from a Harry Potter marathon at a friend‘s house (yes, we‘re staying on the geek road), and can I just repeat how utterly amazing Harry Potter is! We watched the last two films which I had last seen in the theatre. My friend has neither read the books nor seen the final movie, so she had no idea who was going to die and how the saga was going to end. That‘s, like, not knowing who won World War II! But she did an excellent job, she laughed at all the right puns and cried in the right moments. We were both hugging our part of the blanket when we got to the end of Part II, and just gasping for air.

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One of my favourite parts is when Harry and Hermione visit Godric‘s Hollow together where Harry was born and where his parents were killed. It‘s Christmas Eve and they stand at the grave of Harry‘s parents, and it‘s sad, but I just feel so much watching this. This is Harry who has been neglected by his family throughout his entire childhood, who‘s had to live with the legacy of being a war orphan, alive only by his mother‘s sacrifice. This is the closest he ever got to his parents in his adult life, and maybe just for a second he reflects on what could have been if they had survived. It may be a sad Christmas scene, but I think that this is essentially also where Harry gathers new hope. He was brought into the world being loved and he understands what this is worth in a world of hate.

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I know it‘s heart wrenching but this is just a boy who misses his parents and a lifetime of happiness he was refused when he was younger. And if we can‘t allow our hearts to be wrenched at Christmas, then when can we? I love this scene, especially considering how happy Harry is 19 years later. When they all stand on Platform 9 3/4 he is giving his children what he never had and he certainly does not wish to be dead. He finds his peace and I find that very reassuring.

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Now I really need to hit the hay or else I‘ll be pretty damn dead at work tomorrow!
Lots of love from the roots of my heart!
xxx

Blogmas (Day 19) – Funny Customers and a Birthday Dinner

Hello Hellooo!

So, today I was working at the check-out counter in the book shop and there was a huge line. One guy came up and he was buying a calendar and a book, and while I scanned his items he started checking out one of the children‘s books we have on display. He asked whether this was suitable for a two year old which I denied. He then said, «Well, but do you have anything for two year olds?» – Please note that he was standing in the friggin‘ children‘s section! I pointed him in the general direction of more suitable books, well aware that about twenty people were impatiently waiting for their turn. He left his stuff lying and just dashed off into the unknown. When he was back fifteen minutes later with some toy he pulled out his wallet and asked me if I could also give him a card, so he could attach this to the gift he was about to buy. I pointed him in the direction of the cards, and at least, this time, he had the decency to pay first before dashing off again. But you bet, he was back! And this time he did not want to wait, oh no! He just bluntly stepped up in front of me, handed me the card and the money and he was gone. Not to complain or anything, he was very friendly throughout the entire process – if a tad confused as to how shopping works. Poor guy.

On a different note, tonight I went out with my friends Anna and Magalie. If you don‘t know Anna yet – she‘s my blogger friend and you can find her on www.tinytrinket.wordpress.com.  She‘s also doing Blogmas this year and we are cooperating most days. Visit her and love her blog (and her, she‘s amazing!).

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Because it was my birthday last monday we had a belated celebration dinner at one of my favourite restaurants in Bern, Sous-Le-Pont. They have amazing vegetarian dishes, and although the clientele can be a bit dodgy at times (tonight some super drunk guy lifted a trap door and just aimlessly wandered around it for a while, then put it back in), the atmosphere‘s really nice. Later on we moved on to Tibits, another restaurant, where we had some Christmas inspired drinks and tried to read our future in the foam of my Chai Latte (it‘s looking pretty grand for all of us!). It was so good to hang out together again – it‘s so hard to meet up when everyone‘s busy with one thing or another. Especially now that we‘re studying at different universities and Anna who‘s moved to Zurich, it‘s so much harder finding a date to hang out that actually fits everybody. It‘s all the more special, though, when it finally happens of course.

Lots of love from the roots of my heart!
xxx