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Mina's Real Life Fairy Tale's Journal

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

2:53PM - Poets & Writers Jan 2010 issue is out

and it features my beloved husband as one of the debut poets of the year.

go Justin!

Friday, September 11, 2009

6:30PM - living room

Originally uploaded by annesage82

Monday, April 6, 2009

11:33AM - twins at 2 months

munchkins at 2 mos

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

5:31PM - Twins! Louisa is on the left, Henry right.

Originally uploaded by pompomcito14
They're here!

Henry, 12:51am, February 1, 2009; 6lbs, 1oz, 18 1/2 inches
Louisa, 12:53am, February 1, 2009; 5lbs, 13oz, 19 1/2 inches

Thursday, January 15, 2009

6:26PM - Pregnancy Portraits by Erin Patrice O'Brien

I am 32 weeks here.Collapse )

Sunday, January 4, 2009


Watch You Bleed: The Saga of Guns N" Roses Watch You Bleed: The Saga of Guns N' Roses by Stephen Davis

My review

rating: 5 of 5 stars
I remember exactly where I was the first time I heard Appetite for Destruction. 1987: First semester of college. My art-school friend, a skinhead named Katrine, & I went to NYC on a whim & were hanging out in a nearly deserted nightclub, that despite the lack of people, had a very heavy druggie atmosphere. No one was to be found because they were all going into the bathroom to do coke! Anyway, the dj put Appetite on continual rotation. It played over & over & over again, all night, while everyone was scamming their drugs. WTF was this?!? You just felt it in your bones. Something had changed forever in the musical landscape. The evening ended with us missing the last train to Chappaqua & sleeping on the steps of Grand Central until the 5:45. And Appetite has had a special place in my heart for all these years.

The genesis of Welcome to the Jungle is a classic stroke of genius. The planets aligned, Axl found himself in the Bronx during the birth of hip-hop no less & this "innocent in the city" scenario, always a fruitful archetype, proved to be the start of something utterly inspired. The rest of the story is all about the come down.

Reading this Guns story in black & white is the next best thing to sex, drugs & rock-n-roll.

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Wednesday, December 24, 2008


The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down by Anne Fadiman

My review

rating: 4 of 5 stars
Fascinating exploration of American culture & medicine & how it clashes with the Hmong immigrants, a close-knit ethnic group from Laos that the CIA enlisted to fight in the early, hush-hush years of the Vietnam War. In the late '70s, the Hmong became displaced in Asia & they immigrated to the US, expecting to be regarded as military heroes. Instead, adherence to their own customs & refusal to take part in "the melting pot" as well as a dependence on welfare (which they regarded as their due as war heroes) caused them to remain ostracized from society. Within this large-scale drama, is the heart-breaking saga of little Lia, 9th (?) child of the Lee clan & an epileptic.

The author presents a very balanced analysis of the costs & benefits of both Western medicine & Hmong shamanism, finding no easy answers when tragedy befalls a child.

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Friday, December 19, 2008


On Call: A Doctor"s Days and Nights in Residency On Call: A Doctor's Days and Nights in Residency by Emily R. Transue

My review

rating: 2 of 5 stars
an admirable attempt by a young resident to document her experience alongside her personal observations and insights about herself and her patients. alas, there is a lack of wisdom and perspective that makes the writer come across as somewhat naive and too earnest. in my opinion, she'd have done better to stick with the patients' stories of illness, trauma, treatment, death and recovery–endlessly fascinating tales.

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Friday, December 12, 2008


Something for the Pain: One Doctor"s Account of Life and Death in the ER Something for the Pain: One Doctor's Account of Life and Death in the ER by Paul Austin

My review

rating: 4 of 5 stars
A good amount of juicy anecdotes from the ER interspersed with the author's struggle to keep his personal life in balance with his work. Could leave the personal stuff, but the accounts of the varied ER cases were compelling. From serious car crashes to random drunks, the unpredictability of what these doctors encounter on a daily basis had me reading on & on.

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Wednesday, December 10, 2008


I've really got to start thinking about where I'm going to deliver.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008


The Wrecking Crew: How Conservatives Rule The Wrecking Crew: How Conservatives Rule by Thomas Frank

My review

rating: 2 of 5 stars
Much as I'd love to, the past eight years have made it impossible for me to finish this book. I'm just exhausted with the wrecking crew at this point. Know they are crafty. Know they are brilliant. Please spare me the ins and outs of their manifold evil-genius strategies. I am ready for change I can believe in.

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Complications: A Surgeon"s Notes on an Imperfect Science Complications: A Surgeon's Notes on an Imperfect Science by Atul Gawande

My review

rating: 3 of 5 stars
Enough juicy details to stave off my compulsion for medical porn for a few more days. A couple mysteries, too many boring stories mid-book (nausea is just NOT that interesting), and a gripping life-saving drama that will certainly make you think twice before getting a pedicure. Gawande comes across with only thinly veiled humility. Quite a feat for a doctor.

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Wednesday, November 5, 2008

9:27PM - Election Night Celebration

Friday, October 24, 2008


What"s the Matter with Kansas?: How Conservatives Won the Heart of America What's the Matter with Kansas?: How Conservatives Won the Heart of America by Thomas Frank

My review

rating: 3 of 5 stars
how do conservatives get votes by being the party of "values", yet enact a bait & switch when in office? this book is an elucidation of the evil genius they have perfected–consistently getting folks to vote against their best interests. Frank's thesis has been most recently challenged in George Packer's Ohio piece for the NYer & the book has a slight whiff of being (I hope!) outdated. think Rove's 2004 gay marriage referendum.

hopefully the tide is turning for the '09 election, with even kansans turning blue.

i wanted to get this under my belt before reading Frank's latest book.

let's all hope this one is speaking to a very specific point in the political past.

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Saturday, August 16, 2008


Misconceptions: Truth, Lies, and the Unexpected on the Journey to Motherhood Misconceptions: Truth, Lies, and the Unexpected on the Journey to Motherhood by Naomi Wolf

My review

rating: 1 of 5 stars
Dripping with entitlement on every page. Newsflash: upper middle class women used to getting everything on a silver platter discover as they approach now-or-never childbearing years that -quelle horreur!- there is no one to hold their hands through pregnancy & childbirth. Beware of the high-pitched whining throughout. It makes for a difficult read.

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The Farewell Symphony The Farewell Symphony by Edmund White

My review

rating: 4 of 5 stars
I confess, I've always secretly wanted to read those "sex tips from gay men" books. Thank God I discovered Edmund White. Juicy gossip couched in what Jonathan Franzen would call "high art literary tradition". A guilty pleasure without the guilt. Yet the book rewards on so many other levels. Dare I say, there is wisdom in this book: on sex, on aging, on beauty, on writing. From dining with Foucault in Paris to trolling for rough trade in Venice to the angst of socially identifying oneself as a writer before publishing anything, White never shies away from illuminating his all-too-human frailties.

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Monday, July 14, 2008

3:08PM - Wow.

I don't know what's more messed up. That Frances Cobain would cry over Billy Corgan, or that Crazy Love would post this publicly.

The best part is the excuse she gives for doing it: I couldn't find your number.

Thursday, July 10, 2008


Dandy in the Underworld Dandy in the Underworld by Sebastian Horsley

My review

rating: 1 of 5 stars
couldn't get past the first paragraph.

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addendum: Comparisons to Oscar Wilde are downright blasphemous. His self-centeredness lacks the necessary wit.


The Wind-up Bird Chronicle The Wind-up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami

My review

rating: 2 of 5 stars
I feel guilty for not liking this book more than I did. I finally concluded it is just not my cup of tea, though I admit there's a lingering memory of the characters and events and most of all the atmosphere that still stays with me, like a dream. It was recommended to me by a friend based on my love of Ishiguro, but it turns out Murakami is just too subtle for my taste. So sue me.

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The Glass Castle: A Memoir The Glass Castle: A Memoir by Jeannette Walls

My review

rating: 3 of 5 stars
I can't say it's the best book ever written–more like an affidavit for child protective services–but I found it so compelling I read it in an evening. If you've ever found yourself lamenting today's helicopter parenting, the creative child-rearing Jeanette Walls endured growing up in the Southwest and Appalachia with brilliant but horribly flawed and neglectful parents, will put the fear of God into you. Ma and Pa are textbook cases of codependency.

To my mind, the events here raise more questions about nature versus nurture than they answer. I couldn't wait to find out how the West Virginian urchin children turned out. Did they merely survive? Or did hardship strengthen their character? Like so many of us, New York City became their beacon on a hill. But it couldn't be a surrogate. A good book if you want to feel better about your white bread, middle class childhood. Watching too much TV doesn't leave quite the same scars.

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