sailing the NorSea


xWEEK 52 2011x

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First Post, 17 March 2002
Nine Years Ago, This Week, 2002 Eight Years Ago, This Week, 2003 Seven Years Ago, this week, 2004 Six Years Ago, this week, 2005 Five Years Ago, This Week, 2006
Four Years Ago, This Week, 2007
Three Years Ago, This Week, 2008
Two Years Ago, This Week, 2009
One Year Ago, This Week, 2010

Saturday 31 December 2011
Saturday - New Years Eve. I spent it with friends, eating home made pizza, watching some stuff on Netflix and surfing the web on a borrowed tablet (Nook Color, actually). We watched American Scary, then something about a day in the life of the world - well done (but I can't remember the title), then the first two episodes of White Collar. I'd forgotten how fun and quick that show was, at the beginning.

Midnight was something of an anti-climax - no horns, bells, firecrackers or guns going off. WUWT? My friends have a generally nicer neighborhood than me, and it shows at this time of year. When I went home my neighborhood was still jumping, horns and Chinese firecrackers going off. I slept on the couch downstairs (quietest room in the house) with earplugs in and a cat draped over me.

Looking back: It was kind of a grim year. There were several funerals, relatives and friends related. I had to put my own sweet Phoebe to sleep, long before his time should have come. I worked like a dog on my parents place, trying to honor a promise to my Dad to look out for things, without much help or encouragement. Paying engineering work was limited. I didn't sail much because of limited visits to Oxnard and issues with the diesel engine. Several physical injuries meant a lot of slack time and my weight went up.

Yet, it wasn't all bad. I'm enjoying some free time - for the first time in many years I'm not on the road every single week and/or month. My health is generally good. My siblings and friends are all healthy. I have siblings and friends, unlike many in this world. I have some work, and some money coming in, unlike so many in the country right now. My cat Riley is still alive and kicking biting, and looks to do so for a number of years to come. The Canon T3i camera is a marvel and I've no buyer's remorse.

Mild Resolutions for 2011: more sailing. lose some weight. get out more, do some hiking/biking. use my camera more. get a better job if work stays so slow in my current position.

And, oh yes, Book #150: Healer: A Novel of the LaNague Federation, by F. Paul Wilson. This was a kindle book, an anthology of stories about the far future, detailing the adventures of an immortal physician. Kind of a knock-off of Old Doc Methuselah in a way. Ehh.

The interesting thing is that this was the first "loaner" kindle book I've read. You get one a month free with Kindle Prime, which I used to avoid high shipping costs at Christmas this year.

Update: Actually this last book should have been Book #151, since I missed tabulating the forgettable Against All Odds early in the year. I am not going to go through the blog updating references to a hundred books or so, so Against All Odds gets to be #151...

So, here we go, the list of books read this year. There were a lot, mostly due to being chronically "underemployed" and trying not to leave the house and spend money. And of course the Kindle cuts both ways - no need to travel to the library & thus saving me gas, yet making it so easy to spend just $0.99, or $2.99, or $7.99, or even $11.99. I will say that I am trying not to spend much, my top price is now $9.99, and even that is a reluctant outlay.

Best books of the year:
Despite the amount of sci-fi, it wasn't a particulary good year for it. Courtship Rite was published back in the 1990's I think. Ah well. Sailing was a good category, the Webb Chiles books were excellent overall, and the Brendan Voyage is right up there.

The Year in Books, 2011
#1 Lords of the Sea
#2 Kris Longknife #1: Mutineer
#3 Kris Longknife #2: Deserter
#4 Kris Longknife #3: Defiant
#5 Kris Longknife #4: Resolute
#6 Kris Longknife #5: Audacious
#7 Kris Longknife #6: Intrepid
#8 Kris Longknife #7: Undaunted
#9 Little Women
#10 Good Wives
#11 Empress of Eternity
#12 Quarter Share
#13 Up Jim River
#14 Betrayer of Worlds
#15 The Bounty*
#16 Half Share
#17 A Yacht Voyage to Norway, Denmark, and Sweden
#18 The Wreck of the River of Stars
#19 Citadel: Troy Rising II
#20 Live Free or Die
#21 Surface Detail
#22 How the Irish Saved Civilization
#23 The Name of the Wind
#24 The Wise Man's Fear
#25 A Galaxy Unknown
#26 Valor at Vauzlee
#27 The Clockwork Universe
#28 The Clones of Mawcett
#29 The Sun, the Genome, and the Internet
#30 Trader Vyx
#31 Origins of Life
#32 Milor!
#33 Castle Vroman
#34 Outies
#35 Origins
#36 Resurrection and Awakening
#37 Triton
#38 Frontline
#39 Fracture
#40 Fragments
#41 Into My Father's Wake
#42 Heaven, Hell, and Salt Water
#43 Blood Maidens
#44 Dust
#45 Saturn Alia
#46 A Lion on Tharthee
#47 The Warriors Apprentice
#48 The Vor Game
#49 Brothers In Arms
#50 Mirror Dance
#51 Cetaganda
#52 Memory
#53 Finder
#54 Storm Passage: Alone Around Cape Horn
#55 Barrayar
#56 Komarr
#57 A Civil Campaign
#58 Unsinkable: A Young Woman's Courageous Battle on the High Seas
#59 Altered Carbon
#60 Broken Angels
#61 True Spirit: The True Story of a
16-Year-Old Who Sailed Solo, Nonstop and Unassisted Around the World
#62 Chill,
#63 The Lost Fleet #1: Dauntless
#64 The Lost Fleet #2: Fearless
#65 The Lost Fleet #3:Courageous
#66 The Lost Fleet #4:Valiant
#67 The Lost Fleet #5:Relentless
#68 The Lost Fleet #6:Victorious
#66 69 The Lost Fleet: Beyond the Frontier: Dreadnaught
#67 70 The Undercover Economist
#68 71 The Silkie
#69 72 The World of Null-A
#70 73 The Players of Null-A
#72 74 Angelmass
#71 75 Sleuthing the Alamo: Davy Crockett's Last Stand
#73 76 The Witling
#74 77 Leviathan Wakes (The Expanse)
#78 Sailing the Dream
#79 The Hot Gate
#80 A Princess of Mars
#81 Drood
#82 Gods of Mars
#83 Warlord of Mars
#84 Thuvia, Maid of Mars
#85 The Ocean Waits
#86 Fifth Circle, The Passage Log
#87 Fuzzy Nation
#88 Full Share
#89 The Ice Diaries: The Untold Story of the Cold War's Most Daring Mission
#90 Temporary Duty
#91 Confessions of a D-List Supervillian
#92 In the Shadow of Ares
#93 Brain Cuttings
#94 Hounded
#95 Hexed
#96 Agent of Byzantium
#97 Hammered
#98 The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms
#99 A Light in the Dark
#100 Mission of Honor
#101 Diplomatic Immunity
#102 Cryoburn
#103 The Information
#104 The Brendan Voyage
#105 The Astounding, the Amazing and the Unknown
#106 The Lost Gate
#107 Reamde
#108 Soulless
#109 Changeless
#110 Blameless
#111 Heartless
#112, P2 Kon-Tiki
#113 A Planet of Viruses
#114 The Book of Dragons
#115 7th Sigma
#116 The Magician's
#117 The Magician King
#118 The Quantum Thief
#119 The Sagan Diary
#120 The Knights of the Cornerstone
#121 Neptune Crossing
#122 Rashomon Gate
#123, P3, Portland to Portland
#124 Black Arrow
#125 Island of Exiles
#126, P1, Simply Sailing,
#127 The Hell Screen
#128 The Convict's Sword
#129 The Masuda Affair
#130 The Fires of the Gods
#131 The Complete McAuslan
#132 The Seaworthy Offshore Sailboat
#133 The Unix Operating System
#134 Firebird
#135 The Informant
#136 The Man Who Was Thursday
#137 Sandman Slim
#138 Kill the Dead
#139 Wearing the Cape
#140 Villains, Inc., Parts I, II, and III
#141 The A.I. War: The Big Boost
#142 Dead Eye: Pennies for the Ferryman
#143 Dead Eye: The Skinwalker Chronicles
#144 Methuselah's Daughter
#145 Free Nonfiction 2011
#146 Midnight Riot
#147 Moon Over Soho
#148 Small Boat to Freedom
#149 Courtship Rite
#150 Healer: A Novel of the LaNague Federation
#151 Against All Odds  (forgot to insert earlier!)


The Year in Books, 2010 (98)

The Year in Books, 2009 (84)

The Year in Books, 2008 (54)

The Year in Books, 2007 (64)

The Year in Books, 2006 (53)

The Year in Books, 2005 (50)

Friday 30 December
Friday - Not much going on here. Riley and I are just hanging out.

Book #149 was Courtship Rite, by Donald Kingsbury. This was a gift from my sister K to me this Christmas, a novel about love between cannibals. Really. Heh. It's actually rather well done, the story of a civilization on a distant planet, colonists stranded on a world where the only edible meat was each other. Like one of Frank Herbert's Dune series it is chock-a-block full of epigrammatic quotes, the perils of predicting the future, a desert planet, and a secret sect of  courtesan/assassin's. Well worth reading.

And, for the romantic, about that courtship rite of the book's title - it's a series of seven trials to the death.

And, hey, it being the last Friday of the Year 2011, one last cat photo:
friday cat photograph
Chester watches the Christmas unwrapping.
Chester watches the Christmas unwrapping (from a safe location, he never did grow to trust me).

Thursday 29 December 2011

Thursday - I know what you're thinking: "Ed's been on the road or watching anime for the last couple of weeks, he isn't going to make 150 books read in 2009!". Hah.

I give you Book #148, Small Boat to Freedom, by John Vigor. In 1987, to immigrate from South Africa to the United States (and secretly & illegally taking his life's savings in Kruggerand's with him) he sailed from Durban to Boston in a small sailing boat, together with his wife and 17 year old son. He'd done a fair amount of sailing offshore, but his wife and son were inexperienced; indeed, he admitted afterwards that he didn't go on any "trial" voyages with them for fear of their becoming frightened by the open sea or overcome by the amount of sheer physical labor entailed. And, after the voyage, his wife admitted that he was probably correct in that assumption.

It all worked out OK, and he became a fairly successful author in the field of sailing in America.

Wednesday 28 December 2011

Wednesday  - relaxing a bit. Riley was very happy to see me last night.

I went to see Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, at the matinée. Very enjoyable. Fairly long for a modern movie, 2 hours plus, and reasonably well done. Wonderful settings and special effects. There's even a semblance of a plot. Apparently Madonna's ex-boyfriend was the director. And he can actually direct, who would have thought?

There was a trailer, the second, for Battleship, the movie. The first trailer was longer but concentrated on the love interest and such, this was just a shoot-em-up-coming-soon trailer...and I loved it.

Yes, I know it's a stupid idea, that it'll be lame and poorly done...but all the 8 year olds in the theater and myself just sucked in our breath and thought "OH FRACK YEAH...Battleships versus Spaceships".

May 2012 can't come too soon.

Tuesday 27 December 2011

Tuesday -On the road, back to Lancaster. The 680 to the 101 to the 46 to the 5 to the 138. Heavy but not crazy traffic for about 350 miles.

Monday 26 December 2011

Monday - On the road, back to Fremont.

Sunday 25 December 2011

Sunday - Merry Christmas from Reno!

Chester waits for the Christmas turkey dinner.
Chester awaits the Christmas turkey.

Cold but no snow here, alas.

Picture of the Week
Christmas 2011, Reno
Photo Notes: Christmas 2011, Reno, NV.

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