…Nights filled with longer hours, HEY Happy Snow Day Y’all!

Hope you are all having a great first week back.  While break was very relaxing, I’m definitely excited to be back in the bustle of the city.  Plus, now that I’m forced to walk everywhere, I can burn off all those holiday calories.  Question for the universe: can someone build a treadmill with a built in Kindle?  Or better yet, bookholder with automatic page-turner? Get back to me whenever.  My reading list over break was small, but considering their scope, I think, West Tenthers, you will forgive my lack of ambition.  I finished Freedom by Jonathan Franzen and White Teeth by Zadie Smith.  Though they were written a decade apart, with very different settings, I was struck by how similar these books were at the core.  They both observe the effects of modern society across generations by focusing closely on very dysfunctional (read: realistic) families.  What is the dark side of our cherished Western freedoms?  Can love survive despite sex/infidelity, difference of culture, and good ol’ fate?  These are the types of heavy questions I contended with, but, after all, the heavy novels are the most satisfying kind, in a way.  And the two authors wrap their piercing observation in such humorous situations that you don’t even recognize their full implications until you’re forced (reluctantly in my case) to put them down.     

One unfortunate consequence of this otherwise glorious snow day is that tonight’s reading at the Writer’s House with Michael Cunningham was canceled.  Although I had prior commitments, I would have highly recommended it.  In lieu of the real deal, we can use our free time today to get started on his celebrated works The Hours, A Home at the End of the World, or his newest By Nightfall.  And, if you’re already worn out by your school reading, the movie versions aren’t too shabby either.  The Reading Series this spring doesn’t have as many, for lack of better term, star authors as in the fall, but I’m grateful that more time and  opportunity will be given to lesser-knowns.  Some readings at NYU that I will definitely be looking forward to this semester are ones by Matthew Rohrer, Nick Flynn, and Colson Whitehead.

Stay warm chicos! Hot Cocoa and a good book are the doctor’s orders…