Temperatures have been courting 100°. It's the time of year when many desert dwellers either head to cooler climes or shut themselves up in the air conditioning. What have I been doing?
Like mad dogs and Englishmen, I've been out in the midday sun taking a machete to overgrown shrubs and vines. I know. This isn't the behavior of the sharpest knife in the drawer, but sometimes needs must. At least I'm wearing protective gear, take frequent breaks in the shade to drink plenty of water, and I never work longer than two hours (which is a lot less time than it sounds when you factor in those five-minute breaks). When I'm done with my segment of allotted chores, I put everything away, get changed, grab my books, camera, and lots of something cold to drink, and I get in the pool for the rest of the afternoon.
I've almost got everything done outside-- which includes leveling ground and hauling rocks-- and then I'll switch to inside the house, but I'll still have most of the afternoons for the pool!
I'd better head out to the corral and round up those links I've been saving before they feel neglected. Head 'em up! Moooooooooove 'em out!
►Books, Movies & Other Interesting Tidbits◄
- Uganda, where a book can cost a month's salary.
- No one is writing the real West Virginia: why rural lives and literature are in crisis.
- This certainly would come in handy the next time I have blood drawn: a handy device that shows where a patient's veins are located.
- Using crime fiction to present fully formed Muslim characters.
- Amazon brings a feature for blind readers to Kindle.
- Why fiction needs more women scientists.
- Jane Austen's ivory cage.
- When Little Women meets OKCupid. (The author set up profiles for the March sisters.)
- The fine art of literary hate mail endures.
- The art of the story itself hinges on orphans; without them, the novel might never have been conceived.
- UK readers buy more translated fiction.
- Although I don't read enough of it, I am a fan of translated fiction, which led me to this article on multilingual wordsmiths.
- What your TBR list says about your personality. (In my case, nothing much, since none of the categories fit me.)
- I loved watching this short video of Johnny Depp's visit to Disneyland as the Mad Hatter.
- There's a headmaster of a British private school who believes children shouldn't read Harry Potter.
- Here's an interesting infographic about literary word count.
►Channeling My Inner Indiana Jones◄
- Sometimes you just have to despair over the fate of the human race: a man destroyed a 126-year-old statue after climbing it to take a selfie.
- Remember "We need more teeth"? A "Jurassic World" dinosaur has been unearthed.
- The real housewives of ancient Egypt had 8-foot-long prenups.
- The grisly remains of an epic Bronze Age battle have been discovered in northern Europe.
- How a diamond rush led to an ancient underwater secret.
- Found: A Napoleonic War diary hiding in a bookstore in Tasmania.
- An Egyptian mummy's symbolic tattoos are the first of their kind.
- The US Antiques Roadshow made a mistake with this $50,000 pot.
- The decades-old mystery of US President James Monroe's estate has been solved.
- How ancient Egypt shaped our idea of beauty.
- Five things to know about the Diamond Sutra, the world's oldest dated printed book.
- Five lost languages rediscovered in Massachusetts.
- The Trojan War was a grander event than even Homer would have us believe.
- After all the speculation, it would appear that the search for Nefertiti still goes on.
►Channeling My Inner Elly Mae Clampett◄
- 15 bookstore cats you'll want to cuddle with... unless you're allergic (like me).
►The Happy Wanderer◄
- Visit New York City's Guggenheim Museum without leaving your house.
- Where do objects go when they die? (Certain ones come to Arizona....)
- Heffers Bookshop in Cambridge is so old, someone's writing its history book.
- This Dutch village-- which has no roads-- is straight out of a fairy tale.
- This is what it looks like when 4.5 million flowers bloom at the same time in Japan.
- And while we're still in Japan, take a look at the natural art created by a lake and fallen cherry blossoms.
- A secret, wild pocket of Central Park has reopened.
- The next time you're in Chicago, go to the Chicago Cultural Center and look up... at the largest Tiffany dome in existence. It's only worth $35 million.
- The Ennis House in Los Angeles has been a favorite location for film and television production.
- The man who created Scotland's identity.
- 90-year-old Freddie Oversteegen seduced and killed Nazis when she was a teenager.
- It's about time-- Congress approves Arlington cemetery burials for female World War II pilots.
►I ♥ Lists & Quizzes◄
- The slowly accumulating lists of the 100 best non-fiction books of all time at The Guardian.
- Guess which Shakespeare words are real.
- Seven books that will probably never be printed again.
- Eight hacks to how to find the perfect book club book everyone will like.
- 33 powerful books that can help with your depression.
- Ten she-sheds that will put every man cave to shame.
- All lists are subjective, no exceptions. The 101 best crime novels of the past decade is a bit Louise Penny top-heavy, but it's definitely worth a look.
- 11 cozy reading nooks that will make a reader out of anyone.
That's all for now! Don't forget to stop by next Friday when I'll have a freshly selected batch of links for your surfing pleasure.
Have a great weekend, and read something fabulous!