I have anger issues. I borrowed this book from a friend because I was at the end of my rope in how to deal with my dog when she poops all over the flo...moreI have anger issues. I borrowed this book from a friend because I was at the end of my rope in how to deal with my dog when she poops all over the floor. I just loose it, and I know that she doesn't deserve to be yelled at and shamed because of it. I can meditate on compassion, love her up, realize that she can't control her gut, but to no avail--I get raging when I come home/awaken/walk into the room where she's made large, wet, stinky puddles of nastiness. My husband and I are reasonably good at dealing when conflict when it arises between us, and there is little hesitation to discuss family-of-origin baggage when necessary. I have had issues with friends and colleagues in the past, and like most people, I struggle with them when they happen, and hopefully have grown as a person as they are worked out. This book absolutely gave me insight into those types of problems. How to deal with my anger when my dog diarrheas in the living room, not so much.
She's an absolutely beautiful dog. People driving by have stopped as we're walking her to ask what kind of dog she is:
She came to us because she was a puppyhood friend of our healthy mutt, and her previous owners couldn't deal with her any longer. She's sweet-tempered and mellow, and we've lost at least three rugs due to her gastrointestinal inability to process food. We've spent hundreds of dollars on probiotics and fancy foods, and nothing does the trick long term. She can't help it--it's the purebred Bernese Mountain Dog DNA. A tendency to eat unsavory things doesn't help, and that makes me all the angrier when the result makes our house a toxic waste dump. Harriet Lerner did not help me process this kind of anger--there will be no conversations where I say: "Morgan, I know you can't help it, but when you diarrhea all over the floor, it makes me feel frustrated and helpless. It's about me, not you, and my inability to cope with these emotions and the mess, that causes me to react how I do. I love you regardless." But it does give me insight into human behavior, as well as tools to take up when I find myself in conflict with a person. I appreciate that, even though the issue that drove me to read it hasn't been resolved. I also appreciate her acknowledgments of the downside of the self-help genre as a whole: "...self-help advice always runs the risk of fostering a narrow focus on our personal problems to the exclusion of the social conditions that create and perpetuate them." Right on. I would recommend this book without hesitation to any woman who wishes to learn how to process her anger better when it comes to other humans. When it comes to dealing with doggy diarrhea, look elsewhere. (less)
These are gorgeous stories, each perfectly complete. Munro has so much skill as both a storyteller and a writer, that she makes the illustration of a...moreThese are gorgeous stories, each perfectly complete. Munro has so much skill as both a storyteller and a writer, that she makes the illustration of a lifetime within 20 pages or so look easy. Reading each story, I felt as though I was contemplating a beautifully done watercolor. (less)
No doubt Ed Viesturs is good at what he does. He thinks so too, but is relatively modest about saying so. Modestly immodest is how I came to think of...moreNo doubt Ed Viesturs is good at what he does. He thinks so too, but is relatively modest about saying so. Modestly immodest is how I came to think of it over the course of reading this book. The third person historical sections of this book are relatively straightforward and well-written, written as they are most likely by David Roberts. Then Ed chimes in with some commentary or analogy to his own experience: "I was very gratified, then, when Pemba Gyalje was hailed by National Geographic Adventure in December 2008 as its Adventurer of the Year, and award I had won in 2005." Maybe he's just citing a fact, but it seemed in poor taste to remind the reader of this when pondering Mr. Gyalje's bravery during the 2008 K2 disaster.
It's not that Ed seems like a blow-hard. In a sport that attracts competitive egoists, he's probably a really friendly, down-to-earth guy. He lives on the same island as my mother, which isn't necessarily a vote for his down-to-earthiness, but he's a vet too! He likes to talk about how safe and cautious he is when climbing and all the mistakes he's never made compared to the mistakes that others have made, and he also likes to say that he never talks trash even while he's kinda talking some trash. However, I believe him about all of these things. From what I understand about serious mountaineers, he's probably one of the nicest, willing to help other mountaineers in trouble in a field where it's par-for-course to leave others for dead to preserve your own hide. And he is actually probably one of the safest, which is why he's summited all 14 8000 meter peaks and isn't dead, and why no other American has duplicated this feat, despite Ed having completed it back in 2005. I have a lot of respect for Ed. I just don't think he's a very good writer, but that's not what he is. He's a mountaineer and a vet, which is why David Roberts' name is on the cover too. All in all, I guess I didn't read this book for its literary merit, but for the adventure and to learn more about Himalayan mountaineering. And I would recommend other do the same. (less)