September 24th, 2003

rivka as ww

After long silence

I'm just going to pretend the last three weeks didn't exist, okay? On the upside, classes are mostly okay since I spend most of my waking hours preparing for them, and I got a little professional writing done. (Anyone want to beta a SV story, theoretically a clichefic?)

Also, if any of you are ER fans, I need help finding an episode, any episode, on the topic of "nurses and technology." Fetal monitors, EKGs, anything like that.

Z and I are working our way through the Homicide DVDs, and I really enjoy them. Tim Bayliss is breaking my heart, though, still slipping up and calling other murder victims "Adena," and Pembleton not saying anything about it at all. Another highlight was Meldrick and the Secret Service agent fighting about whether Baltimore or DC was the better city, except they weren't quite fighting about that at all, but about something else entirely.

I have books piled up in the dozens, but I'll just talk about Mauve, by Simon Garfield, right now. This is a book about a single thing and how it shaped history, following on the success of other recent examples like salt, cod, snow, etc. Mauve was the first aniline dye (made from coal), but it wasn't nearly as important as salt and Garfield has to spend too much time on the inventor's life. The highlight of the book is a descroption of a celebration of the 50th (I think) anniversary of the discovery, where the inventor is feted. Garfield notes that many prominent chemists in the dye industry were present, some still with color on their hands. In fact, he says, the event was so important that everyone of note attended -- unless they were dead or dying.

A pun that bad deserves attention, even if the rest of the book is nothing special.