Jason Huff

On Friday, Jen and I visited the New Britain Museum of American Art for their September First Friday event. The first Friday of every month, the museum hosts a night of snacks and jazz. While the clientele is a bit older, the entertainment is wonderful and in my opinion it’s a perfect date night.

Shortly after our arrival, we were alerted that there was an artist’s talk beginning shortly on the second floor. Jen and I strolled upstairs and sat down to listen to artist Jason Huff talk about his recent work.

Jason Huff has a fresh approach to traditional works. The focus of his talk was his book ‘The Road Not Taken’ which uses Google’s recommended search results as supplements to the famous Robert Frost poem. Each word from each line was entered into Google, and a new poem was created from the now ornamented text.

“Two roads diverged in a yellow wood” thusly becomes:
“Two moons roadside lyrics diverged definition inception amtrak yellow book woods hole ferry.”

It was an extremely fun method of modernizing a traditional work. Check it out here.

Book updates!

I have started reading a few new books. The Justice book that I last wrote about (Representing Justice) was good enough to encourage me to seek more books on Justice. That coupled with a convenient trip to Connecticut’s infamous Book Barn resulted in my buying the book ‘Justice’ by Michael Sandel. So far it has been a pleasant philosophical walk down the road of righteousness.

Simultaneously, I am getting my fiction kick with the second book in the Name of the Wind series by Pstrick Rothfuss.

Anyone else enjoying some summer reading this season?

Representing Justice

About six months ago I heard an interesting piece on NPR about a book called “Representing Justice” by Judith Resnik and Dennis Curtis. The piece described the book as a journey into the personification of Justice – how different cultures envisioned her and how her image, in a sense, acted as a gauge of the public opinion on the court system.

I finally got around to requesting the book via the Meriden Public Library and just picked it up yesterday.

As she pulled it off the shelves, the librarian groaned under the weight of what looked more like an academic text book than a casual summer guilty pleasure. 668 pages of 8×11 fine print interspersed with the occasional figure or artistic rendition of Justice. This was unexpected.

Mike D: “Uh, for how long can I borrow this book?”
Librarian: “Three weeks.”
Mike D: “And, supposing I can’t finish the book in that amount of time… can I renew it even though it’s on inter-library loan?”
Librarian: “yes, just call us in advance and as long as no one else has requested the book you’ll be able to hold onto it.”

As she said this she flipped over the inside cover to stamp the book with its due date only to find that I am the first person to ever take this book out from the library.*

I suspect renewal won’t be a problem.

In other news: while I’ve only read the first few pages of the book, I’m already full invested. It’s great! I’ll let you know what I think as I dig into its somewhat intimidating depths.

*This is not as ridiculous as it sounds, the book was just published last year, so it may be a new library acquisition.

Name of the Wind

I just finished Patrick Rothfuss’s book ‘Name of the Wind’. This particular book was recommended to me by my sister Alicia and was far different from any other books I’ve read in recent history namely because it’s Fantasy.

Roll not your eyes! This book is awesome. Yes, it has a horrific cover. And yes, it does delve into Demons, Magic and the like. But suck it up and read it because it is great. This book is to the stereotypical Fantasy genre as The Passage is to Twilight. It is deep, dark, and thoroughly engaging and not remotely tacky or glittery.

The big trouble with ‘Name of the Wind’ (much like The Passage*) is that it’s part of an incomplete three book series. And while the second book of this series is complete, the third is not. Why do I do this to myself?!?! ACcording to my limited research, Mr. Rothfuss has already written the full story (all three books). Originally, he’d planned on releasing one per year for three years. However life got in the way. He published the first in 2007, the second in March 2011, and the year that’s currently listed on publishing sites for the third is 2014.

So if you plan to read it, read it slowly.

(Passage book 2: Aug 2012, book 3: 2014)