Msnowe's Blog

Monday Postage for Friday

Posted in Uncategorized by m.snowe on October 19, 2009

The fiction Lady-Rating returns (on a Monday).

Do you have what it takes, fictionally?

Do you have what it takes, fictionally?

First, apologies–m.snowe has been neglecting this Friday post  idea. But to remedy that on a Monday morning, here we go with a new book to analyze in terms of its female characters, or the presence/lack of any type of feminist ideas.

Today’s Lady-Rating, for American Gods, by Neil Gaiman.


Do ladies ever strike twice?

Rating: 4 out of 10.

Reasoning: First let m.snowe say that she enjoyed this book immensely. It was an easy read, and presented ideas and creative vignettes that were extremely original and thought-provoking. There was an underlying message or preachyness to the book, but it really didn’t distract or take away from m.snowe’s enjoyment of the story. But here’s the problem–most of the lady bits are tangential. The protagonist, Shadow, is actually quite a redeeming character, and it’s clear that he respects and enjoys the company of women (yeah, in that way too). And women do play a crucial role in the movement of the story–Gaiman’s premise of broke-down gods living in America is not neglectful of lady gods–Easter, Mama Ji, the Zorya sisters, etc., and so on. And Shadow’s dead wife is also a key character. But honestly, sometimes m.snowe felt like the ladies were either there to add flourish or intrigue, or merely drive the story–which is fine, but the women don’t get the kind of character development that the men sometimes do. Despite the variety of names these lady-gods are given, it might not be completely unfair to say they are all really Muses. They guide and assist Shadow on his way, and the real players are men–Shadow, Wednesday, Mister World.

But let m.snowe make it clear–she loved this book, and found herself reading passages that were completely unique, and many times wished she could’ve come up with such strange and beautiful stories. The small stories that breakaway from the main action were just out-of-place enough to work, yet intrinsically tied to the plot, even if you couldn’t fully puzzle out why. A scene of a reverse birth was shocking (at least, it was to m.snowe!), and the frank suspension of reality somehow works. In fact, it was mildly disappointing to see that the end was connected to the solving of a “real life” murder mystery, because it hurled the story back into reality, taking the reader out of the world of strange possibilities that Gaiman navigates so fluidly. If only Shadow or Wednesday had a lady counterpart, this story would’ve tipped the lady-rating scales to a seven or eight. But m.snowe recommends you read it anyway.

m.snowe burgles you

Posted in Uncategorized by m.snowe on June 4, 2009
Don't trust this one with your stories

Don't trust this one with your stories

So m.snowe was trolling the online world and she found this awesome little ditty, written by her old college roommate, who is intelligent, awesome, and totally the other “pretty one” (inside joke!). m.snowe has reproduced it here, for your reading pleasure. Damn, we wish we were this cool. (p.s. the writer’s parents are Kathy and Kevin…but you should realize that).

happy anni-mc-versary aunt kathy and uncle dad!
Mon 23:12
In case you never heard “their story,” here it is:

Once upon a time, my friends, Aunt Mom and Uncle Dad, lived in Watervliet, NY, the land where it is perpetually 1950.

Aunt Mom was a swingin’ chick who liked record parties, drinking Coca-Cola in the bath tub, and of course, the mashed potato (the dance, not the starch).

Uncle Dad was kind of the same, but minus all the things I just said. He was, however, on the school’s Latin team. This in itself would have made him the coolest kid in school, but he always got beat up cause he tried to wear his toga to class all the time, when everyone knew that the toga was only supposed to be for Latin competitions. Man, that kid could declinate nouns like it was nobody’s business (and it really was nobodies business, cause declination is a very private matter); he could also conjugate verbs like there was no tomorrow, but seeing as how he’s since lived a heck of a lot of tomorrows, that theory has been disproven.

Anyways, in addition to being a Latin rockstar, Uncle Kevin was also a Church rock star. A Church rock star?, You ask incredulously, doubting that such a thing could exist. But if you ever saw that cat swing on stage, I mean on the altar, with his leather vest and capo, twinkling his little fingers off during the Our Father, you’d know it does exist. And you’d probably develop a MEGA rock star crush. Unless he was your uncle dad too, in which case that’s just gross.

And it turns out that Aunt Mom DID develop a mega Church rockstar crush on uncle dad. And by Aunt Mom, I mean Aunt Mom’s best friend. But uncle dad didn’t digg her, he dug aunt mom cause he had a thing for gals with polka dot eyes, and that’s just what aunt mom had (green with brown polka dots). She could also sing somewhere over the rainbow in Russian, but that wasn’t for a few years, so he had to go for the polka dot eyes.

So, the big moment came when aunt dad was gonna ask uncle mom out (wait, strike that, reverse it), and aunt mom responded by saying she had to “ask her dad,” even though she really just had to go get a cootie shot and make sure it was OK with her friend first.

And the rest is really history:
-uncle dad and aunt mom went to the movies
-one time they went looking for a turtle and I’m pretty sure uncle grandpa called the cops cause he thought they was dad
-then it came time to want a dog, so they decided to get hitched
-then some stuff happened
-then they bought a really neat Chagal painting (because love just isn’t love without a violin playing goat)
-then they moved to Newark, NY with a bunch of guys named Dwayne and lots of sauerkraut
-then they moved to Utica, NY with a bunch of guys named Tony and Rocco and lots of pizza and arsons

I think somewhere in there they had some kids, but no one is sure of how many are actually theirs except the one that looks just like them, Simon. Simon grew up to be get a PhD and be a MetaPhysician, but none of their other supposed children ever amounted to much.

A Couple of years went by and then it was today and it was their thirty-something-year wedding anniversary (if I knew how to count I could tell you exactly). I haven’t talked to them, but I can only imagine they will celebrate very romantically by eating hot dogs, while watching Law and Order with my friend, Cousin Caitlin. If the night gets real crazy, they may even stay up past 10 pm.

Someday I hope I have an aunt mom and uncle dad as swell as my friends, aunt mom and uncle dad.

–Author: M.o.M.

N train test

Posted in Uncategorized by m.snowe on May 11, 2009

So m.snowe, when she wants to quickly assess the quality of a book in hand, has a simple method that can be replicated practically any day, twice a day. It is simply thus: crack open a book on the N train back to Astoria, and after hearing that satisfying splice of the binding giving way to your will as the pages are stretched apart, dig in. Just go with the book and see what happens. Then, here’s the list of questions you should ask yourself when reaching your stop, as way to assess said quality:

1. Were you aware of exactly what stop you were at when you looked up for the first time from your book?

2. How long did your trip seem–Painfully long? Way too short?

3. Do you have any idea if the people sitting next to and across from you are the same people that were there when you sat down?

4. Are you sad you have to get up now and close said book?

m.snowe’s answers to questions 1-4 were:

1. Wait, where was m.snowe again?

2. Way too short.

3. These people could’ve been using the pole in front of her for a strip-tease and m.snowe wouldn’t have noticed.

4. Sadder than ever.

So what book was this, you ask?

Miss Harper Can Do It

Go get yourself a copy, or check yourself.