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July 25th, 2009

~Saturday~ I slept in this morning. Glorious.



Just before I left for the gym, the sky opened up, and I opened my door to find last night's spiderweb all but destroyed. There were only two strands left, and no sign of the spider, which was the best part of all. I got soaked even with a two-second run from my front door to my car.

I waffled all the way about whether or not to do ab crunches once I got there, since I just did them yesterday, and it had been about a week since I'd done them before that. I did end up doing 225 again, and though I could definitely feel them on the last 75, they were manageable.

I did 60 minutes again on the elliptical machine, but at a slower pace today, since I listened to a Selected Shorts podcast while doing it, instead of the dance music yesterday, which kept my pace faster. So, today I burned off 925 calories as opposed to yesterday's 1076. Who's counting?

The Selected Shorts podcast episode was called Hints of Madness, and it consisted of two stories, the first one much longer (about 40 minutes) than the second (about 15 minutes). And after the second story, there were four poems read, each one was one minute or shorter, and they were written by people in prison.

The first story was very enchanting and engaging, and obviously at 40 minutes, took me through most of my workout. The second story was quite humorous:

Sermon in the Guava Tree: By Indian writer Kiran Desai, this story follows the uneven fortunes of an ordinary man and his disgruntled family when one day he decides to retreat from a disappointing life. Paradoxically, this gives him a place in the world for the first time. The compelling read is by Tazewell Thompson, Artistic Director of the Westport Country Playhouse.

Crazy Glue: By the provocative Israeli writer Etgar Keret, this story gives us a look at a bizarre and transformative moment in an emotionally sluggish marriage. This one is read at Westport by Chris Sarandon.



"To read an E. Lynn Harris novel was to eavesdrop on the lives of the young, black and fabulous. The, young, black, conflicted and fabulous, that is: Harris made a name for himself chronicling the lives of the beautiful and the buff, men living on the down low, having lots of hot, tormented sex while wearing designer duds and generally living the glamorous life."

E. Lynn Harris, 1955-2009, Dead at 54


I think this excerpt from the article linked from the caption of the picture above is just wonderful, especially the very last sentiment:

He was an avowed football fan, but he also had a thing for theater, loved the greasepaint, the drama, all of it. “It’s like magic to me,” he told me when I interviewed him 10 years ago for the Chicago Tribune, “Nothing pumps me up like a Broadway overture or a school fight song. Football and theater.” And in particular, he loved Dreamgirls, a musical which made frequent appearances in his novels. He saw it over 100 times, eternally obsessed with the Dreamgirls’ rise from poverty to stardom.

“I love those pull-up-by-your-bootstraps stories. That's a part of my life,” he told me.

But he never felt the temptation to take to the stage, though his book tours often felt like performance. “I remember I did a reading once,” he told me, “and when I came out on stage they gave me a standing ovation. I felt like a Broadway star. I was actually taking bows. I was close to tears.”

“I wish that everyone I ever met would have a standing ovation in their life, just once.”





"Obama to hold town hall meeting at Broughton High," so says a local story today. I'd love to have a chance to hear him speak, but it's not something I'd break my neck trying to do. That story had a link to a whitehouse.gov website from which to get in the lottery for two tickets. What the heck. I filled it out.

I just hope they'll have the good sense not to route the motorcade down Hillsborough Street on the way to the high school. I also hope that it happens late enough that the motorcade won't interfere with my buscapade. Not that it's all about me.



I hadn't planned on going out tonight, and I thought Joe was going to twist my arm—that one millimeter twist that it usually takes—to go out, but I ended up staying in. Yay!

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