First impression of this book: The author has an annoying habit of randomly italicizing some of the words (or possibly it's the format translation) buFirst impression of this book: The author has an annoying habit of randomly italicizing some of the words (or possibly it's the format translation) but it is annoying and distracting and precarious because I keep mentally emphasizing the italicized words but the impact points they create often don't make sense. Oh hey, later she moves on to strikeouts. Awesome.
Anyway, this is allegedly a fake memoir, but it reads more like a low-wage testimonial. It's a lengthy collection of tales of our protagonist, who got a master's in graphic design but was unable to find any work in her field, so she worked on yachts and at the Gap and ended up settling as a cleaning lady for a couple of below-board operations, eking out $12.00/hr (no idea why that's hyperlinked), but no overtime or travel time. She put up with this abuse for a good long time, because she had no better options, but ultimately decided to become a freelance cleaner. It seems like she makes a comparable to slightly better wage, but she's still doing this job.
Author seems to blame a lot of other people for her problems, like discriminating against her because of her age/weight/ethnicity/citizen status. This book is full of swearing and racism and stereotypes, which I didn't mind, but might explain a bit of the author's narrator's problems in getting hired elsewhere.
She does raise a lot of valid issues (importing third-world workers to work for a pittance, people who work while illegally receiving welfare, the idea of a living wage... which is different in NYC than in Metro Atlanta, for example), but a lot of it seems to be buried in endless anecdotes. She argues for a living wage for workers, but if I went from paying $12/hr to say, $17/hr for a housecleaner, how would I know that the person was even competent? A lot of her co-workers would superficially clean or sweep dirt under rugs or use the same rag on all the surfaces, and some would destroy counters or floors with the wrong cleaning reagent. Why not?
What she is trying to say is that while there are low-information or illegal workers who take a pittance because it's under the table, there are also people with degrees in useless fields who are facing the same problems of low-wage work. They're easily exploited by fly-by-night employers or employers that are too big to fail or too small to reprimand (author reported her employer to the Department of Labor Standards for unpaid wages in 2011 and the case is still pending in late 2014), and workers who dare to assert their rights are retaliated against or effectively blacklisted in some industries or banned from certain properties (interesting that this is still going on a century after The Jungle was published). She found that her co-workers who ostensibly agreed with her in regards to their exploitation were unwilling to challenge the boss for their grievances.
She calls out liberals for doing fuck-all about this problem besides being total hypocrites. She calls out conservatives too. I can't really suss out her political position. She seems to be anti-welfare but not really libertarian, because she also wants government regulation against bad businesses and forcing up the wages. She also notes that there is a lack of innovation or creativity of people in the creative fields who have to clean houses or otherwise bust their butts to make $25K/year, and that when people are only paid minimum wage or are trapped in dead-end positions, they're not interested in excelling in their jobs....more
I won an autographed copy of this book in a First Reads drawing.
This is a bunch of vignettes (I think they're too brief to be short stories) illustratI won an autographed copy of this book in a First Reads drawing.
This is a bunch of vignettes (I think they're too brief to be short stories) illustrating human emotions. Dark emotions, mainly. I don't remember any jubilation or happiness. Some of them are better written than others; a couple are downright confusing. The clearest one is Salt River Bottoms. The author has a good grasp of imagery in his writing....more
Yet another blog-to-book fail. This one suffers in that it's not interesting to the reader, and she tries to be "edgy" by tossing in a few expletives.Yet another blog-to-book fail. This one suffers in that it's not interesting to the reader, and she tries to be "edgy" by tossing in a few expletives. Has any blogger written a decent book? Author says "get rid of stuff, do one thing at a time, and do less stuff. And read my blog. Here's the link." It's probably only 25 pages or so if it were printed, so it's quick. Less eloquent and more arrogant than many other self-help books with the same message....more
This book is terrible, but it's funny too if you look at it from a satirical perspective. The best discussion of it I've read to date was at slacktiviThis book is terrible, but it's funny too if you look at it from a satirical perspective. The best discussion of it I've read to date was at slacktivist (now findable at http://www.patheos.com/blogs/slacktiv... ), though I don't know if he ever finished the book. It just has an incredible fixation on logistics without really considering the societal impact of the sudden disappearance of *all* children and all of the "Good" Christians. Like, no riots or anarchy or anything. Just a day or two of delayed flights.
I've been a practicing Christian for 30+ years and I'd never heard of the Rapture until I read this book....more
This book is short. The author makes clear that it is in magazine-type format (ie, several short, standalone chapters) which makes it easy to read wheThis book is short. The author makes clear that it is in magazine-type format (ie, several short, standalone chapters) which makes it easy to read when faced with frequent interruptions. This was helpful. At the ends of some of the chapters she includes links to various blog posts or web resources to delve further into given topics. I especially liked the Jennifer Fulwiler essay about following the example of Mother Teresa's Missionaries of Charity and not overscheduling.
I like how she doesn't come across as judgmental, in stark contrast to 99% of other parenting/domesticity books I've read, and I don't feel like I wasted my time reading this book. I learned a few new tips on meal planning, time management, and giving myself some grace and space when I feel like I'm failing as a mother. ...more
I got this as a free ebook, and it was surprisingly thorough compared to many free ebooks. Author describes how to teach your children the basics of pI got this as a free ebook, and it was surprisingly thorough compared to many free ebooks. Author describes how to teach your children the basics of preschool and even kindergarten while at home. Includes the subject areas of letter recognition/pre-reading, math concepts and number recognition, shapes/colors, art, music, movement, and basic life skills. She writes with the assumption that a reader will likely send their children to kindergarten or first grade at a school, hence the title. Shows the structure of how to schedule your school day and make lesson plans. Points out that a lot of what children learn at home doesn't have to be divorced from normal daily activities (use chores to teach certain lessons like sorting or matching, for example).
Book was also faith-independent; if the author was of a particular faith it did not resonate to the point of distraction in this book (no fixation on bible verses or proverbs or catechism or anything of that sort). ...more
Some scenes in here I've never seen in any movie version, like debtors happy that Scrooge no longer holds their note. Also, is Tiny Tim's corpse lyingSome scenes in here I've never seen in any movie version, like debtors happy that Scrooge no longer holds their note. Also, is Tiny Tim's corpse lying upstairs in his house?...more