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My soul, it is fed

Lots going on in life, but half of it is grousing about workload, and the rest isn't really appropriate posting material.  Suffice to say, I'm tired, and probably more than a little loopy.  It will pass, but not nearly fast enough for my taste.

Meanwhile, a wonderful respite this afternoon (once I pried myself away from incoming emails and voicemails).  The UW library book sale started today, and Z. and I went.  This was my first year going to the pre-sale day.  It was good, but I think I'll be satisfied with going on a regular sale day in the future:   prices are a bit cheaper then, and the book selection is still very satisfying.

The highlight of my purchases:  Pictorial Field Book of the Revolution by B. J. Lossing.  1852.  Embossed cover with a nifty design of 13 arms (the colonies, I assume) grabbing a circle of chain.  Bonus:  a small newspaper clipping stored between the pages; I'm not sure of the year yet, but 1868 is the latest date mentioned in the article...however the inscription says the book was given to Mrs. Lucy B. Hall on her birthday in 1878.  $5 for this gem.  Drawbacks:  it's volume 2 only, and the lovely spine, although intact, has detached. 

I think that book sale is one of the few places I'd seriously consider going in search of a date.  It's a room full of happy happy bibliophiles.  But, we're all too busy burying our faces in bookpiles to consider any complex social interactions.  So it goes.  Maybe the library should have a mixer afterward so we can show each other our purchases... maybe I could find out who has Vol 1 of that pictorial field book.

The only other older book is How to Live, a 1925 paperback from the Life Extension Institute.  With extensive instructions on constipation, and virtually nothing on the topic of sex...unless you count the chapter on eugenics.  Oy.  Interesting in the same way as the Household Discoveries recommendation to use benzene to control pests.

I'm a sucker for language books.  201 Japanese Verbs and Sanskrit Roots and Verb Forms.  In the category of things I might actually have a shot at reading is a history of Canada, in French.  I remember enough French to muddle through a fair bit of it; with a dictionary I could do it.  I also got The Duden Pictorial Encyclopedia in Five Languages.  Two volumes, and detailed enough to teach me many new English words, as well as French, German, Italian, and Spanish.  

Research for current stories turned up very little this time, possibly because I'm not writing much.  I did get There Are No Children Here by Alex Kotlowitz; it's a story of 2 kids growing up in poverty in Chicago.  I have a character who spends most of his youth on the streets of Detroit, apparently, so this counts as research of a sort. 

Z. pointed out Bizarre Plants, which looks like a fun book.  I also picked up The Victorian Frame of Mind...although the treatment of the subject looks highly opinionated.

In technical-ish works, a paperback copy of Physics and Philosophy by Werner Heisenberg, and the 4-volume set The World of Mathematics.

Just two history books (not counting the Canada one):  An Outline of Czechoslovak History and Eastern Europe 1740-1980.

For a change, I actually made it to the fiction section this year and netted Twain's Life on the Mississippi, Collected Poems of Rudyard Kipling, and the two-volume Galactic Empires, edited by Brian Aldiss.

I picked up a few books for friends&family too, most notably Baseball Graphics by John Warner Davenport; the acknowledgments page includes a list of music listened to while drawing graphs (Weather Report, Steely Dan, Supertramp, Bob James, and Matrix).  Bonus:  a sheet of notebook paper covered in...World Series winners?  [googling...] oh hey, I was right! 

I'm well-pleased.  It's an excellent event to look forward to twice a year.  And for the entire time I was there, I did not think about work, or really about much of anything else.  No mean feat.

Before the sale, we had a feed at Dotty Dumpling's Dowry.  Silly name, good burgers and deep-fried things.  Tasty and comforting, if a bit heavy just before all that book-hauling.   

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