Monday, October 29, 2007

Social Networking for Cats and Other Critters - Exercise 18

In this exercise, I took a stroll through some of the most well-known social networking sites: My Space, Face Book, Yahoo!360, Xanga, etc. I kept my pen and scratch paper handy, ready to take notes. I kept writing "junk", "junk". Most of the content seemed superficial; normally I wouldn't air such a judgement, but this exercise asks for our thoughts. I sure wasn't making any soul connections!

Then I got to catster. Awwww -- so many adorable photos. I found a black cat named Minx in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia that reminds me of my cat, Bowie (pictured above). If Bowie and I joined catster, Minx and Bowie could be "friends". Minx already has 16 friends! I think sites like catster and dogster has therapeutic potential for seniors who can no longer own pets. Another interesting cat, or at least the name, which I think is droll: "Mr Furrious".

What I'm reading: The Used World by Haven Kimmel. I've just started it and I'm smitten. The main characters all work at Hazel Hunnicut's Used World Emporium, an antiques and junk store in fictional Jonah, Indiana, and that's enough to hook me. Kimmel is so good at portraying the inner complexities of the female soul.

And here's one I read this weekend that was enchanting: Garden Spells by Sarah Allen Addison. If you are born into the Waverly family of Bascom, North Carolina, chances are you have a gift related to intuition, foresightedness or an uncanny, somewhat witchy knowledge of all things green and growing. When two Waverly sisters reunite, their talents as well as their love lives come into sync. First novelist Sarah Allen Addison writes with what I think is just the right amount of magical realism, much like Alice Hoffman.

Both Kimmel and Addison have North Carolina connections, the state my fraternal ancestors came from. I've kept my father's faded, falling apart copies of novels by Asheville, North Carolina author Thomas Wolfe. I used to sit in front of Dad's book shelves when I was a little girl, puzzling out the meanings of the curious titles he owned. You Can't Go Home Again sticks in my memory. When you're in second or third grade, you can sound out those simple words, but not their meaning. Such was the mystique of adults and their curiously named books.

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