What’s on Your Nightstand, is a monthly meme hosted by 5 Minutes for Books on the last Tuesday of every month that summarizes what you’ve read for the month, what you’re currently reading, and what you plan to read next. For my posts, I also include articles, music, art, TV shows, and whatever else I did in the month.
My reading trend so far is pretty erratic. I began the year in a slump, went on a reading high in February, and was burnt out by March (kinda). I completed one book, but I currently have many on the go. I couldn’t decide on what to read next, so I kept starting books. Hopefully I’ll complete one of them in April.
The Curse of Chalion by Lois McMaster Bujold is a new favorite. I’ve mentioned it a lot on here since reading it. It’s a high fantasy novel about a man who gets caught up in the plans of the gods and tangled in the politics of his land. It’s a wonderful read that I increasingly liked the more I learned about its magic system, which is influenced by the gods: The gods must use human conduits to effect change in that world. I’m eager to read more of Bujold’s books and the other novels in this series. If you haven’t yet read The Curse of Chalion, I highly recommend you do so.
Other things consumed in March:
Raw Material (lrb.co.uk)
“What is most troubling about the call to remove Schutz’s painting is not the censoriousness, but the implicit disavowal that acts of radical sympathy, and imaginative identification, are possible across racial lines.”
Non-Black People of Color Perpetuate Anti-Blackness Too (huffingtonpost.com)
They have a tendency to remain neutral until they’re reminded that they’re not White.
“Ultimately, the narrative that imagines mixed-race people as a panacea for racism is a flawed one that reinforces ideas around the very existence of race. Instead, we might want to refocus our conversation around how the collective fiction of race is weaponized to limit access to equality and justice for some groups and not others, then maybe we’re onto something.”
White Pride and Prejudice (nytimes.com)
“This is an idea with a powerful hold on the liberal mind — that great literature and art inoculate against illiberalism, that high culture properly interpreted offers a natural rebuke to all that is cruel, hierarchical and unwoke. The idea that if Mike Pence really listened to “Hamilton” he would stand up to Donald Trump … that Barack Obama’s humanistic reading list was somehow in deep tension with his drone strikes … that had George W. Bush only discovered his talent for painting earlier he might not have invaded Iraq … these are conceits that can be rebutted (with Wagner or Céline or Nazis-at-the-symphony references) but always seem to rise again…
In part they endure because contemporary liberalism has substituted aestheticism for religion, dreaming of a universal empathy sealed through reading rather than revelation. But they are also powerful because the last few generations have produced very few major artists or movements that are not liberal or left-wing. The defeat and moral disgrace of fascism, the eclipse of traditional religion, the philistinism of American conservatism and the narrowing of post-1989 political debates have all helped forge a political monoculture in the arts and the academy, making the link between literature and liberalism seem natural, inevitable, permanent.”
The “It” Factor: Fiona Maazel on the making of a writer (centerforfiction.org)
The Rising Tide of Educated Aliteracy (thewalrus.ca)
— an interesting read about peeps who take pride in discussing books they haven’t read. I think most book bloggers/vloggers would be interested in this one.
Sci-Fi Author Nnedi Okorafor Says Publishers Whitewashed Her Book Cover (huffingtonpost.com)
So that was long for the Articles section. I almost didn’t include the passages and quotes. However, I post things on here for both myself and whoever decides to read my stuff and these highlighted bits will remind me later what about the articles caught my attention. Anyway, video break:
Lorna Goodison First Female Poet Laureate of Jamaica (susumba.com)
Penguin Random House Acquires Obama Books (publishersweekly.com)
An Artist Helps iTunes’ User Agreement Go Down Easy (nytimes.com)
— Basically he adapted the iTunes user agreement as a comic book. I guess I’ll read it now.
— THIS!! proves the Oxford comma (a.k.a. serial comma) is needed.
Because BuzzFeed is awesome
Other awesome ish:
Manny the Selfie Cat (instagram.com)
— I’m not an animal lover and I’m not crazy about cats, but I’m so fucking hooked on this IG.
Cookie Butter (booksanddrinks.blog)
— I am hooked. I shared it with my family. They are hooked. Can’t believe I’ve never heard of cookie butter before. I discovered it in a blog post on Books and Drinks, a blog I highly recommend y’all check out.
Summer Series: 20 Black-Owned Swimwear Brands to Support This Summer (officialblackwallstreet.com)
— Because summer is coming and the beach is calling.
‘Get Out’ video break:
“To ‘check one’s privilege’ is a gesture of self-sanctification that helps no one, unless it is followed by reflection and then by action.”
— from Annalisa Quinn’s review of Jami Attenberg’s All Grown Up (npr.org)
I found this on Brittle Paper:
My skin takes three sessions on the sunbed to achieve
It’s hard to perfect the darkness surrounding my elbows and
Between my legs
There are tones that have never seen sunlight
I am a black woman, not medium brown or
Full-lipped and stretch-marked so far that even on your tippy toes
I cannot be reached
— “Being Black” by Hanna Ali
Shows I’m hooked on:
— Sometimes it’s good. Sometimes it’s bad. Either way, I’m still hooked.
Into the Badlands
— It’s back! 😀 Season 2 started on March 19 and so far I’m loving it. I love the action but I need them to pump up the story some more and push more depth in it. Love the cinematography too.
My Neighbor Totoro
— I haven’t watched many Studio Ghibli films, so I’m taking advantage of the opportunity to see them in theaters now. I saw My Neighbor Totoro last weekend and loved it. Such a sweet story and I loved the animation too. It was great.
— I saw it. As far as horror flicks go, it was okay and wasn’t particularly scary. Actually, I wouldn’t even classify it as horror. Maybe thriller…? I enjoyed it more in retrospect, when I reflect on its social commentary and discuss it with people.
What I’m looking forward to:
— Because I must see all X-men movies.
— Because it makes me think of Alien and sexy-ass Jake Gyllenhaal’s in it.
Baahubali: The Beginning
— YO!! I saw a crazy ass battle scene from this movie that blew my mind, man! I must see it. I wonder if it’s available in English. I’ll watch it regardless though. It looks crazy good. I think I’ll like it. If y’all have seen it, lemme know what you thought of it.
More Studio Ghibli films
— I’d love to see Spirited Away and Kiki’s Delivery Service.
Master Jiang and the Six Kingdoms
— I really want to see this! Does anyone know where online I can watch it?
— An installation at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in NYC. I’ll have to make a trip north to see and experience it.
— An exhibit at the Hirshhorn Museum in Washington, D.C. I really, really want to see this but the tickets go by so fast. I refuse to allow the exhibit to end without me seeing it.
And I’ll stop here because that’s a lot of stuff. As for some quick life updates: March was great because I celebrated another year of my life while partying in Atlanta, which is a pretty nice city. I didn’t see much of it though so I’ll have to return soon.
I was a little sad at the beginning of March because TnT carnival was just over and I was too broke to go (Again!) so I missed out on all the wining, chipping, jumping, feteing, and liming I could’ve done in Trinidad. 😥 Ah well, there’s next year.
Also, I’ve decided to go natural and have decided to wear braids while I do so, which will be an adventure because I’m not a fan of braids. I get tired of them quickly. I got some crotchet braids at the beginning of March and I loved the style. It’s so cute and since it was a twist, I unraveled it and had another style to rock for some time. I plan to take it out soon though and I’ll see how long I can survive without a perm. (Pray for me.)