Category Archives: books

einstein’s dreams

i’ve always said this is one of my most favorite books even though i was only 16 or so when i read it. (plus it validated my thing for jewish authors.)  i re-read it for book club recently, but missed the meeting. not having talked about it yet must be why i felt compelled to write something about it on goodreads. which i’ve copied here.

just finished this book for the second time. i rarely read books twice, but the first time was in high school and i remember enjoying it so much. i had sort of forgotten why, other than that the paradigms of time comprising each chapter were in and of themselves intriguing. apparently it also had to do with the challenge to my teenage mind to think about the plight of the modern man. this must have been the focus of many class discussions on this book, based on some notes in the margins i found. it did trigger memories of those english teachers trying to get us to decide how to life a productive and authentic life.  for example, on p. 17 after the chapter about time travel, I had written, “we, although not time travelers, can change the future with the way we live, things we do, etc. what is the difference between us and a traveler from the future in the risk involved in changing the future? we are living the life the will be the future but they are outsiders.  the importance of what we do may be the same, but they try to omit themselves from courses of action, and we must commit the action in order to produce an effective course.”  don’t know if i’d ever have come up with that now. funny though, cause i still think about action vs. inaction a whole lot, which might make those teacher happy.  i also had many notes correlating the different conceptualizations of time to different characters in the sound and the fury. buh…  i guess that one is next on my to-reread list.

ps. alan lightman once personally funded and built a mosque for a poor cambodian town.  cause that’s just what jewish physicist-writers do.



i just want to make sure the universe knows that this is what i’d like for christmas, amy sedaris’ book simple times: crafts for poor people.

it’s ok if everyone sees this then gets it for me then i have multiples because i’d like my friends to have it too so we can do poor people crafts together.

also, justin theroux did the illustrations. i don’t understand how he is everywhere?

summer reading lists

Was cleaning off my desk and found the summer readings lists from Uni High School in Irvine, CA, which I had picked up last year when I went to my childhood library in Irvine with Brooke. (Which, by the way is such a cool library. There was this spiral ramp leading up to the grown up section that was fun to play in.) We wanted to see how many of the books we’d actually read, and use them for ideas of things to read. As if we needed that. Since I’ve held on to these lists for so long, I thought I’d share them. You too can see how much (or little) you have in common with the literary habits (or coercions) of today’s youth and add fodder to that to-read list on Good Reads. I’ve only read a few of these. Should I be ashamed? This is the high school that I would have almost gone to had my family not moved and put me in Catholic prep school, which just brings back horrible memories of staying up all night while my mom read Lord of the Flies out loud to me so I would stay awake because the summer reading test was the next day which we had only barely found out about since I had only barely enrolled…

University High School Summer Reading List

Incoming Freshman
Ender’s Shadow, Orson Scott Card
Charms for the Easy Life, Kaye Gibbons
The Good Earth, Pearl S. Buck
Sister of my Heart, Chitra Divakaruni
The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency, Alexander McCall Smith
Timeline, Michael Crichton

Incoming Sophomores
A Tree Grows In Brooklyn, Betty Smith
The Red Pony, John Steinbeck
Falling Leaves, Adeline Yen Ma
Bless Me, Ultima, by Rudolfo Anaya
Their Eyes Were Watching God, Zora Neale Hurston
Peace Likre A River, Leif Enger
A Lesson Before Dying, Ernest J. Gaines

Incoming Juniors
The Forest House, Marion Zimmer Bradley
The Crystal Cave, Mary Stewart
Absolution by Murder, Peter Tremayne
The Queen’s Man, Sharon Kay Penman
The Secret Diary of Anne Boleyn, Robin Maxwell

Incoming Seniors
The Alchemist, Paulo Coelho
Nervous Conditions, Tsitsi Dangarembga
The Bean Trees, Barbara Kingsolver
Tortilla Curtain, T.C. Boyle
The Samurai’s Garden, Gail Tsukiyama
Five Quarters of the Orange, Joanne Jarris
The Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne

So how many can you check off this list?

yes yes yes, and thrice yes

I’ve finished the 8th and last (so far) book in the Georgia Nicolson series I mentioned the other day, which means I have to read actual grown up literature until the next one comes out. Or at least until July 25th when the first movie comes out! Katie clued me in to today–joy of joys. Below’s the trailer, keep in mind this is based on a book for teens. But who doesn’t love a good high schooly movie? 10 Things I Hate About You? Clueless? Classics, I tell you. Not to mention the 80s. Add the British and you’ve got a winner. Now, in the first book we’re being introduced to her world, and as the books progress and you get to know the characters and their history better so things get much more entertaining. By book 8 I was laughing out loud with every page. Perhaps the movies will follow a similar pattern, so my disclaimer is, if this one doesn’t turn out to be as great as we thought, the rest are bound to get better and better. And if you’re a little tempted to read these, know that you can get through one in a few hours, so what have you got to lose?


Sorry about these post titles, I just can’t help it. I’m reading these super British teenage girl books where they make up words like maturiosity and hilariosity and snoggosity and it’s overtaking my thinking.

I’ll probably never sit in an actual tent in Bryant Park during New York Fashion Week. Unless, do you think designers invite their therapists for front row seats? But at least I have the internet. I’m remembering one fall fashion week during college where I was sick at my mom’s house, eventually to be told I’d need emergency surgery, then to be told before surgery everything was fine. (Miracle? Loony doctor?) At the time, I was barely strong enough to make it up a flight of stairs and the lights of the family room were so painfully bright I couldn’t stand to have them on. But I drug myself out from a week-long bed-ridden stupor so I could watch the runway shows on tv. Gosh I am thankful for my health. But I still wish I was rich already so I could buy some fancier duds. This year I watch from the comfort of my deliciously cozy brand new bed and I’m a bit more aware of what’s going on. Here’s what I’ve gathered after watching almost if not all the NY shows.

Trends from the runway:
baggy and oversized, especially jackets, blazers, and coats
bland colors–blacks and neutrals without a hint of life
20s & 30s as inspiration

Trends that have been around a while but are still designer (and me) approved:
bows, especially around the neck
high-waisted belts

As complete collections, Zac Posen Anna Sui, and Carolina Herrera were a few of my favorites. Carolina Herrera was a surprise since I’m usually pretty ambivalent about her.

Zac Posen

Anna Sui

Carolina Herrera

Picks from other favorites…

I love these looks for the delicate details.

Max Azria


Derek Lam

Koi Suwannagate


In these I’m drawn to the retrosity.

Betsey Johnson

Jill Stuart

Other favorites. Especially love the colors.

Matthew Williamson


3.1 Phillip Lim

My favorite model of the moment:

Freja Beha Erichsen (in Vera Wang)

Fashion is hard. Time for a rest.