Digging up the Earth

Jenny's UK ramblings.

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Nerdy book club?

I don't know about you guys, but I've been really crap on the reading front these days. Last year I managed to tear through quite a few books, but this year....there've been a lot of magazines and newspapers, even the odd bridal mag (!!!!) but just not enough super-sweet chow-down-and-lose-track-of-yourself-fiction in my life. This is where you come in, dear readers. I'm going to put a little "recommended reading" thingie somewhere on this blog, and please let me know if you have any book suggestions.

So I'll kick things off. Last year's hands-down fave was Middlesex (bloody brilliant) by Jeffrey Eugenides. Thanks to JB and Shaker for that suggestion. Miriam Toews' A Complicated Kindness also really blew me away. Don't be put off by the chicken on the cover, or the words "farm" or "prairie" on the flyleaf - this is NOT boring CanCon fare!In the non-fiction realm, I also read a lot of Robert Kaplan last year, who is great, but don't read him if you're feeling a bit melancholy or concerned about the future of the world. In that vein, I really, really, REALLY, loved A Short History of Progress by Ronald Wright. If you read the Wright book, I wouldn't bother reading Jared Diamond's Collapse - it takes about 400 wordy and blustery extra pages to get to the same point that Ronald Wright makes in an elegant 130.

Right. On that nerdy note, let your book suggestions fly...

Monday, January 30, 2006

Gung Hay Fat Choy!

Happy Year of the Dog, everyone. I went to Chinatown today with Jenny L. and a few of her friends for some very fun Dim Sum and Hot Chinese New Year parade action. I even ate a chicken foot!

At the end of the meal we made some modern art with the very strange red-bean dessert. Check out my inukshuk: (which was lost on everyone at the table - a Singaporean, Glaswegian, South African, Colombian, and a few Limey-Canadians)

I loooooooooooooove Chinese New Year. What I *don't* love, however, is the UK's fondness for over-packaging.....

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Welcome to my blog....

Hey everyone,

Erm, welcome to my blog. I used to make fun of blogs. I once swore that I'd never even *date* someone with a blog. Well, I've changed my tune on both, even marrying a blogging nerd last month...

Reasons-for-blogging-change-of-heart: I love writing, I haven't been doing enough of it, and I wanted to stay in touch with people back home without clogging inboxes with group emails. I've also been really inspired by such blogging pals as Sarah Marchildon, my brother Jeff, my niece Justine, my husband, my pals Shaker, Heather,Marija, Dustin, and a writer named Ross Laird who taught a brilliant writing workshop I recently took at SFU. I no longer think blogs are weird - they're a pretty cool way to get your random ideas into the world.

(Speaking of Justine, check Her Superior Adorable Cupcake Cuteness out:

Anyhoo, the name of the blog popped into my head today when I was searching for a title (i.e., staring into space from the comfort of our couch). This came into my head with little explanation. It's based on this propaganda campaign in Britain during the Blitz when the government was trying to get people to eat/grow more potatoes and carrots for the war effort (!?!?!) - ("Dig-up-the-Earth and eat-your-carrots-and-together-we-will-stick it to the Nazis"-type thing.) Don't ask. Anyway, it seemed like a cool image - digging for stuff and uncovering things and exploring things and bringing things to light, and, erm, living in Britain, and, uh, eating veggies. Anyway, best not to over-analyze when creative genius strikes.

So on that note, I'm going to post this bad boy and let 'er fly. Any blogging tips are more than welcome. I'm still figuring out the bells and whistles, so stay tuned! Big love to all, J