Friday, July 30, 2010

Catch and Coal

Catch-22 is a wierd book. Have you ever seen Gilmore Girls? The dialog is like that: fast and circular. Catch-22 is a phrase which means a no win situation and in this books' case a situation in the military. This book was not interesting to me at all so I didn't finish it. In LOST this book shows up when Desmond is having visions of things happening and finds Naomi in her parachute caught in a tree. Maybe the writers are suggesting Desmond is in a no win situation with the island- I'm not really sure but I didn't read the rest to find out.

I also have finished The Coalwood Way and this book was sweet. It is about a small West VA mining town in the 1950's. The main character wants to be a rocket scientist and eventually work in Cape Canavarel and feels like his father doesn't support him thus resulting in a bad relationship between the two. There isn't a whole lot of deep things to study- it was just a sweet story of this teenagers life and things he learns along the way. This book shows up in LOST during the episode "The Man Behind the Curtain" where we learn about Ben Lynus and his history with Dharma. Ben is in a class room and this book is on the shelf so I can only guess that either the Coalwood town in the book or the main character or both reflect how Dharma-ville lived and Ben's bad relationship with his own dad.

I'm taking a break from the LOST books for a little bit. The one's I've read so far haven't been that interesting (as if you couldn't tell) and I'm going to go back to an old favorite: Dan Brown! This is apesjam reporting for Apesjam&Co signing off!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

The Chosen

I just finished "The Chosen" by Chaim Potok. The book begins with this qoute by Karl A. Menninger: "When a trout, rising to a fly, gets hooked on a line and finds himself unable to swim about freely, he beings with a fight which begins in struggles and splashes and sometimes an escape. Often, of course, the situation is too tough for him. In the same way the human being struggles with his environment and with the hooks that catch him. Sometimes he masters his difficulties, sometimes they are too much for him. His struggles are all that the world sees and it naturally misunderstands them. It is hard for a free fish to understand what is happening to a hooked one." All book points aside, I love this quote. It is not harsh in the way you usually hear this point made "Don't judge others" "When you point a finger there are three pointing back at you" etc... It is very realistic. I also am speaking in church today about Learning and Listening to others and this quote presents a great example of putting that idea to practice. If un-caught fish would see the trouble it is get caught, hopefully they would swim a little more carefully as to not go through such an ordeal. Fish continue to get caught. But instead of coming up with reasons as to why they get caught, we need to understand the last sentence and apply that "It is hard for a free fish to understand what is happening to a hooked one".
This book shows up in LOST in the last season when a group containing Ben Lynus come to the beach where the "LOSTies" camp was 3 years previous. Ben finds Sawyers old tent and is leafing through the books Sawer had hiding in his tent when he find "The Chosen". This book is about two Jewish boys growing up at the end of WWII in America. The boys however are in different Jewish sects whose followers of each sect fight pretty dilligently against the other. Their story is told in the view of one of the boys, Reuven, and follows their story through the latter years of high school to when they graduate college. This book was interesting to me because it spoke a lot about Jewish history and culture and this would be something I would like to read about later. I don't really see how it applies to LOST especially in the setting where Ben found it. All I can figure is that it was an illusion to Sawer being one of the "candidates" and not really focusing on the story. I do suggest this book however, it is a short read. I "read" it in 2 days increments at about 6 hrs each day so go borrow it from the book store (or ask me and I can send you the file) and read! (Verb: it's what you do)

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The Brothers Kmaojeoifn

That's what this book is like to me. I tried reading The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoevsky but it is a very hard read! If you remember in LOST way back to season two, John Locke gave this book to Benjamin Lynus posing as Henry Gale while being locked up in the armory. I thought it would be interesting considering the characters, but I only got through Book 2 and there are 10-11 books in all. This book has books within it and within the books are chapters. Keep in mind I listen to these while at work so I can only focus so much attention at a time. This book was written in the late 1800's in Russian. It was then translated into Old English and a British-man read the book on my audio file. The author also uses Russian nicknames for his characters, and not constant nicknames, but more around 4-6 nicknames per character! The whole book is about 3 brothers, their differences, and eventually their fathers death. Each book within the entire book involves either a different story, character background and are unrelated to each other. It looks like later on in the book the little books might merge together, but I was having to Wiki even the first few chapters to try to understand what was going on and I figure if Wiki knows more about something than I can figure out, not only is that sad, but I should probably let it rest. I did find on Wiki that a main theme in the book is a struggle between two of the brothers: one of faith and one of science. Which is a major theme in LOST; is it fate they crashed on the island or just a bizarre coincidence. I don't suggest this book because in all honesty I couldn't understand it, but if you're up for a challenge it might be for you! (and then you can write back and tell me how you made sense of it all). Next!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Long Days and Pleasant Nights

I finally finished The Dark Tower series by Stephen King. I have been working on listening/reading them for probably 2 months now. There are 7 books in all and so I have been thinking about what exactly to say. I'm reading these books because they have been mentioned or talked about by LOST writers or characters so I want to see how the books relate to the show, but I think it is also helpful to review these books. With that let me start off with my review! All in all I did not like the series. I like certian books, but how can you say you're a fan of Harry Potter if you only like the 3rd book? My problem with Stephen King is that he is an unsensored writer. Many of you might be familiar with his horrer movies such as Carrie, The Shining, Misery etc... and you will know from them Stephen King does not try to sugar coat anything. It was the same with the characters in this book. When he described an emotion, moment, or action it was in full detail with no reservation. Stephen King wrote this series over about 30 years period of time and that also translates with each section of the series he wrote at different times. He wrote the first book at 19 so it involves things that 19 year olds are concerned with- mostly a lot of sex. I did not read the first book because of that and really I don't think I missed anything because of it. For the first 4 books, Stephen King recaps what has happened thus far in the story so anything I needed to know from the first book was summed up in the begining of the second book. The rest of the series followed suit in being inappropriate. A lot of language, a lot of gore, and tons of sex. The fourth book imparticular was very uncomfortable for me to listen to. I tried to skip through it, but being an audio file, you have to listen in order to skip. I do not reccomend these books and honestly, I am relieved to be finished with them. I should have stopped reading them pretty early on because I really felt them to be damaging to my spirit. I mean I honestly had some personal but serious reactions while finishing up the last books. On a positive note my favorite book just so happens to be the one everyone hates: the 3rd book.

How it applies to LOST: in almost every way! The plot of this series there is a cowboy-like character on a journey to find "The Dark Tower". Things happen on his way to find this tower such as time travel, paradoxical universes, and meetings of "other" people. Smaller similiarities are character names like a baby named Aaron, a character named Faraday, Eddie's (in DT) background and Charlies (In LOST) are similar, and there are a lot of flashbacks. What I believe to be the overall theme in the DT series is that it's all about the journey. Roland (main character in DT) does get to his Dark Tower only to find he has been there many times before and he keeps returning only to go back to re-live his life so that he can hopefully do it "right" this time. This was a very clever ending for Stephen King to think up: The first line in the first book and the last line in the last book are the same "The man in black fled accross the desert and the gunslinger followed". The overall theme in LOST however, is that it's who you meet and become along the way, more of a character development story than having to "succeed" or do something "the right way". The ending of LOST was similar to how Stephen ended the not so main characters stories. In DT, 2 characters died and the third not-so-main character (in a long story made short kind of way) crossed into another universe and met up with them to be able to spend "forever" with them. In LOST, the characters exploded a hydrogen bomb in a huge pocket of energy and likewise created another "world" or realm in which they all could be together "forever". I put words that might suggest a sort of solid time or idea in quotations because those terms are always relative.

All in all I like the ways the LOST writers incorperated main themes and ideas from Stephen King's The Dark Tower series, but those are about the only things I like out of his 7 book long series.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Anniversaries!

June 28th was our TWO year anniversary! This particular anniversary is very exciting for us because if you were to go back to previous posts you would see we haven't had to most support in our young marriage, as I'm sure many people experience. Because of this, we kind of went all out to celebrate! The Friday before our anniversary, PJ took me out to a Buckhead Life restaurant called Pricci. Pricci is an Italian restaurant and it is pretty good! I don't know how authentic it is considering I've never been to Italy, but it seemed to be closer than The Olive Garden or Carraba's! Afterwards we went to The Cheescake Factory (yum!!!) and got a small pie and came home to eat it. Then this past weekend we went to visit PJ's mom in Savannah. We stayed at Avia which is such a nice hotel. Let me tell you about this hotel. It smelled good! I know this is such a weird luxury to enjoy, but it smelled fresh and clean and it put you in that relaxing mood. We had a walk in shower with a "raining" shower head and we couldn't get enough of that shower. I wanted to go outside and walk around to start sweating just so I could go take a shower! The turn down service was a very nice touch after getting in late and wanting to just kick off your shoes and lay down. They offered complimentary wi-fi and it was fast and efficient. The staff was friendly and let's not forget about the valet service! I have become a huge fan of valet parking after these the restaurant and this hotel. We walked down River street and checked out the little $20 or less stores along with the homemade candy stores (we spent a lot of time in these stores!). We got to eat at The Chart House which is right on the river. The only down side of this to me is that the buildings in "historic Savannah" have to be historically correct so we asked specifically for a window seat but the windows were tiny. The food was amazing however. I actually ate fried green tomatoes and would love to eat them again! We then went to the theatre to watch "Southern Nights" which I didn't think I would enjoy, but it was great! The cast was on and they had a live jazz band which was a lot of fun. If we had stayed longer, I would go again! Sunday we went to church and then thought we would "run" over to Tybee Island to see what it had to offer and traffic! Was horrible! We got out of church around 12:30 and got back to were PJ's mom was staying (only 30 min. away) around 2:30! And we didn't even get on the island! There is a small bridge that takes you to the island, and once you get over it there is another 5 miles until you get to the "beach" and after going about 2 miles in stop and go traffic, we decided to turn around. Then once we got back to the bridge, there was a wreck! Which took at least an hour to clear. I have to say it was a bad "start" to the day so the rest of the day I was a bit grumpy and we didn't really do anything (which was good because PJ and I were both really tired from the previous day). Funny thing about vacations huh? You go to get away and relax and you usually end up doing more than you would have done had you stayed home! Monday we caught some lunch at The Pirate's House before we left and the food was once again very yummy. Once we got home though, we were stuffed from all the food we ate! I still don't think we have our regular appetites back.

Since this vacation was during the 4th of July, we talked a lot and thought a lot about the blessing of our Independence. Growing up I wasn't very patriotic because I didn't get "it". I didn't understand why this country was supposed to be so great because it is much easier to see flaws than virtues. I am also reading the Book of Mormon at this time and it stands out to me more than ever the fact that this is a blessed land. God has had a hand in the settling of this land from Lehi on down to the Pilgrims and promises in The Book of Mormon that as long as the inhabitants are righteous, the land will be blessed. I think it is also important to remember why this country was formed and what our Constitution states as to what we stand for. Since men run the government and men are flawed, it is safe to assume the government will be flawed as well, but that is not what this country stands for. I hope God really will bless America and I hope we will celebrate our Independence, freedom, and opportunities and remember to pass them down to our children so these ideas will not be forgotten. Happy Anniversaries!