February 4th, 2008

CJ

Indecision '08

Salon has a couple of great articles on being undecided today:

Walter Shapiro on the policy and style differences between Clinton and Obama.

And Rebecca Traister on why identity matters. She really sums up my conflicted feelings well. Back when John Edwards was my candidate, I was more than content with him ideologically and as a potential leader. But I had a nagging guilt about it: in the end, despite all the other options presented before me, I was supporting the white guy. A progressive, feminist, class-aware white guy, to be sure. But still. And now I have the opportunity to cast my primary ballot for the first woman with a real shot to win this thing. Will I really refuse to be a part of that?

Which is why, despite everything I've said about dynasties, and all my reservations about voting for someone who is such a product of the Democratic machine, I'm still thinking about casting my ballot for Hillary. Because in a world where Walmart can refuse to sell a t-shirt with the motto "Someday, a woman will be president" because it's "too controversial", yes, identity politics still matter. Hating that fact doesn't make it any less true.

Of course, a vote for Obama is just as historic in its own way. And in the end, I may well cast my ballot for him.

I don't know whether it's more frustrating or exciting that I still get to be undecided at this late date. I never imagined that my most difficult presidential voting choice would be due to having too many options, rather than not enough.
quote - library from hp

Dream library meme

Ganked from luciab.

The good-book fairy is granting you your dream library! Describe it. Is everything leatherbound? Is it full of first edition hardcovers? Pristine trade paperbacks? Perhaps a few favourite authors have inscribed their works? Go ahead-let your imagination run free.

So first of all, I need a room. Because that's one thing I've always wanted and never had: a room just for all my books, shelves covering the walls, a south-facing window, the perfect comfy chair with a lamp and a side table where I could put my drink. Last year, I went to a party thrown by someone from work, and she had the most beautiful attic library -- a huge open room with low ceilings and dormer windows and shelves on every wall. Something like that would do nicely. With an excellent stereo system, since I really enjoy listening to music while I read.

As for the books themselves... I am not usually much for fancy editions, or even hardbacks. So I think it would be full of paperbacks, ideally trade paperbacks because I think those fit in my hand the best. With two exceptions: a reference section, full of fun dictionaries and writing manuals and encyclopedias on interesting subjects and various editions of Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable; and a selection of architecture books full of pretty pretty pictures. Those I'd like in good hardcover editions. But the rest would be paper. A nice smattering of feminist thought and travel writing and books on the media, and then lots and lots of fiction. Classic and modern YA; sci-fi and fantasy, some literary fiction, some trashy romance. A book for every mood, that would be my goal. And graphic novels! Definitely graphic novels.

Signed editions? Eh, I don't care so much about those. Only if it means that I got to meet the author -- that's more important to me than the signature on the title page, or the overleaf. Readability is the key for me.

But really, it's mostly about that comfy space. Someday, it will be mine.

Fun question! Anyone else wants to answer this one, I'd love to see it.
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