World War Z: Book Review

World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War by Max Brooks Published in 2006
World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War by Max Brooks
Published in 2006

First, a note on post-apocalyptic fiction. I love it. I love it so much. But this love is in spite of one major, glaring issue – they all tend to focus on one part of world. No points for guessing which part of the world is usually the focus…

World War Z – both book and film – share a quality that I love. The entire human race is threatened, and the threat is shown from all over the world. Yes, there is still a strong focus on America, but major incidents and significant parts of the story happen elsewhere in the world. All I have to say about this fucking finally.

Continue reading “World War Z: Book Review”

“You’ve Changed”: On Coming Home and Facing the Accusation of Change

You’ve changed.

You've changed Chips

People are fond of telling me this – so fond of reminding me that Heather-of-five-plus-years-ago would not have said/done/thought/dressed as I do now. As an observation, this is a harmless sentiment. People change. I too have noted how my friends have become different from who they once were, and been surprised by who they’ve become. Unfortunately, the tone often indicates that this isn’t an observation. It’s an accusation. It says You’ve changed and I don’t like it.

Continue reading ““You’ve Changed”: On Coming Home and Facing the Accusation of Change”

I’m a new teacher! Help!

… Whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable
Than my own meandering experience, I will dispense this advice now…

Be careful whose advice you buy but be patient with those who supply it
Advice is a form of nostalgia, dispensing it is a way of fishing the past
From the disposal, wiping it off, painting over the ugly parts
And recycling it for more than it’s worth.”
(Everybody’s Free To Wear) Sunscreen

Before I even begin writing this, let me preface it with the following:

  • I don’t have any teaching qualification other than a not-worth-the-paper-it’s-printed-on TESOL certificate.
  • I’ve never taught any children younger than 8th grade level – and the 8th graders I taught were gifted students.
  • My teaching experience is a combination of university lecturing and high school teaching.
  • My high school teaching experience is partly EFL teaching, partly not. It’s more WTF than anything else.

Before I ever got into teaching, I was terrified of it. I was terrified that I would be one of those shitty, bitter teachers who got into the profession because What the fuck do you do you with a degree in English if you don’t want to teach?

Continue reading “I’m a new teacher! Help!”

Donating Goods In Korea: The Beautiful Store

An accurate depiction of my attitude toward buying stuff.
An accurate depiction of my attitude toward buying stuff.

Things are forever, but there’s also an annoying little thing that’s attached to this: Everything you buy will one day have to be packed up and moved.

Packing is an annoyance at best, and a complete misery at worst.

If, like me, you like to buy things, then you might end up with some very annoying problems: Continue reading “Donating Goods In Korea: The Beautiful Store”

A Discovery Of Witches: Book Review

A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness Published in 2011
A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness
Published in 2011
Part one of The All Souls Trilogy

Excited, as I always am, to begin reading a new fantasy trilogy, I really wanted to like this book. And in the beginning, I really did. Diana (the protagonist) is fiercely independent, and intelligent. She has a PhD and is a respected scholar in an obscure field. She is driven and she is ambitious and she has this strong determination to succeed on her own merits, not because of her magical powers.

During her research, Diana comes across a manuscript with hidden magical potential, and suddenly there are creatures all over her previously quiet life. Vampires, Demons and other Witches are coming out of the cracks, some of whom are menacing and seem dangerous. What is so special about this manuscript that the creatures are willing to threaten her to get it?

Sounds great, right?

Well… there were a few issues. Continue reading “A Discovery Of Witches: Book Review”