February 2021 in Reading: Going Back to Print

February did not open well for me. Late in January I was introduced, through a Youtube video by Wisecrack on the philosophy behind The Office probably the one TV show I can claim to absolutely love (other than Community, that is), to David Graeber’s book, Bullshit Jobs. My interest piqued, I got a hold of the …

January 2021 In Books: Women, Men, and Money Problems

As we were all expecting, 2021 is turning out to be the overhyped sequel to 2020. The virus is still a reality for most countries, and here in the Philippines the vaccines are finally available – but not quite yet, though at the very least they have distributed the forms. Indefinitely I am still stuck …

My Favorite Books From 2020

It’s been a very non-eventful year, a reflection that I recognize is coming from a privileged position when I think back at the millions or so of people that contracted the virus, the significant portion of those that ultimately didn’t get out alive, and, speaking about local matters, all the people that lost their jobs …

(Un-)Reading: Jordan Peterson’s 12 Rules For Life

Reading this book was a very disappointing experience. Reviews of 12 Rules For Life parade Peterson as a kind of intellectual prophet, and the blurb itself claims its author to provide, in the four hundred pages or so that make up the book’s unnecessary long run, “nuanced messages about personal responsibility”. The review that follows …

Reading All Of Faulkner: Soldiers’ Pay

I’ve had the idea for this challenge for a while now – have been, in fact, ready with most of the books purchased and shelved for the better part of a year – only I could never quite get started for two reasons: (1) I am lazy, and (2) I’ve read some Faulkner before and …

READING: The Master and Margarita, A Ridiculously Funny Novel From A Ridiculously Unfunny Time

So far the moral of the story seems to be: stop taking things too seriously, and be wary of giant cats. But I’m getting ahead of myself. After the pleasant if short-lived experience with Genki Kawamura’s If Cats Disappeared from the World, we fly out of Japan and come into Soviet Russia, coincidentally also involving …

Quarantine Journals: If Cats Disappeared From The World

The day Fully Booked announced that they would be open for deliveries within Metro Manila amid the community quarantine, I was already on their online store browsing for books. That’s how much I missed being inside a book store. Looking at book covers through a screen didn’t quite emulate the experience, especially when half the …

Quarantine Journals: Reading Albert Camus’s “The Plague” (Part 2)

Some dispatches from quarantine: it appears that countries around the world have taken note of China’s draconian measures towards containing the virus from its hotspot in Wuhan. Borders are closing. Communities are locked down. This quarantine has made hermits of us all. Unless, of course, we’re talking about the Philippines, whose politicians have so far …

Quarantine Journals: Reading Albert Camus’s “The Plague”

With Manila entering a rather militaristic community quarantine, I find my Saturday morning suddenly freed up. Naturally my first instinct is to pick up a book from my personal library and while away the hours perched on the bed with a hot cup of coffee. And to think we’re supposed to be in a state …

(Re-)Reading: Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman

(Featured image: Murakami collage via 99designs.) I call it the Murakami reset: everytime my reading habit starts to slip (which since I moved from being college boy to corporate slave has become quite frequent) I do a cold reboot by reading something by Murakami (Haruki – though, I’m also a big fan of the other …