2016 Reading Challenge: Unstoppable by BILL NYE

I love Bill Nye. I follow him on Twitter, which makes us best buds. RIGHT?

Seriously though, one of the hardest things for me to accept within the last decade of my life was how much difficulty I have with scientific concepts. I remember struggling all the way back in middle school. Give me a paper topic and I’ll write you a 98 paper the night before it’s due. Give me a lesson on history and I’ll likely never forget it. Give me a literary masterpiece to analyze and I’ll write a damn good paper and remember the story for years to come (looking at you, Dracula). But put me in a science lab and I’ll crumble. Perhaps that’s why I majored in a social science?

My point is that science is difficult for me. But this book is written FOR ME. One thing I do know is that climate change is real, it’s happening right now as I type this, and humans are contributing to it. You’ll hear people say “I don’t believe in climate change.” all the time, and that’s fine. But there is no “believing” and “not believing”. Not with this.

Which is why this book is so important. At some point all of us will have to face reality because our planet is the only one we have at the moment. It’s our only home, and we’re doing our best to leave the issue of climate change to be dealt with by our children and grandchildren and great-grandchildren. We’re just kicking the can further and further down the road. And our continued inaction will come back to bite us. There’s no doubt about it.

Bill Nye is pushing 60. He didn’t have to write this book. He’s under no more obligation to help save our planet than the rest of us. He wrote this book looking at the future, but also looking at the present. The people of today are going to be the ones who begin making the necessary changes to help preserve our planet, our planet’s resources, and our way of life. Because humankind has never had a greater say in the future and preservation of our planet than we do today.

I know many of you aren’t interested in my videos, but I implore you to take a look this one time. Not because I care about views or subscribers, but because this book is not just entertainment or a good story, it’s IMPORTANT. This is the first time I can say a book I’ve read is more than a book.

Fines Everywhere

Whenever I play around online to read book stories I always come across the same story over and over again. Fines.

People paying ridiculous fines for library books long overdue. The problem I have is that libraries need a better system to collect fines. I’d say take a page from Redbox. Swipe your card when you check out a book and once it’s overdue the library will automatically charge you until the book is paid for. Then it’s yours.

But seeing people pay $1500+ or 40 years’ worth of fines is beyond reason. There’s no point for that. Libraries have adapted their offerings, so why not adapt how they take fines?

What’s the largest fine you’ve ever paid for overdue library books? Mine is probably around $1.

FREE STUFF

Well, mostly.

I like free stuff. You like free stuff. Everyone does, right? Anyway, audiobooks are cool, right? Especially for those of you constantly on the road. Or maybe you listen to them while at work or working around the house.

Audiobooks.com is making it hard not to give them a shot. They’re offering FOUR free audiobooks (two of your choice and two Christmas books) when you sign up for a free trial and use promo code CNETDEALS.

I’m not one to listen to audiobooks. So I’m not aware of what’s a reasonable monthly price, but the price after the trial is $14.95 a month for one book. I honestly think of that as way overpriced. You’re essentially paying for that one book just like you would without the subscription. Welp. Audible is priced exactly the same as this site. Just checked.

I think they’re both overpriced and will never get my money. But maybe you think otherwise. If yes, use CNETDEALS when you sign up on audiobooks.com to get your four free books!

Just a Feeling

Once upon a time I was a writer. During high school. During college. Immediately after graduation. Writing was a constant for several years, though I have no idea where the enjoyment came from. Things just happen sometimes.

And sometimes they just don’t. I haven’t written anything of substance in almost three years. But something changes in your mindset and perspective after you read your own work, which I did this month. It takes you back to the hours spent staring at your computer screen just thinking. Thinking of what’s supposed to come next in the story, and thinking of where it’s headed.

I was also taken back to how excited I was to be writing a REAL BOOK. I don’t currently have any ideas swirling around inside my head, but I think I’m the slightest bit closer to getting back into my writing than I have been in some time. Encouragement and nice people don’t mean anything at this point because it falls on my shoulders and no one else’s. Either I’ll do it or I won’t, and nothing any person says is going to change that.

2016 Reading Challenge: Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

Oh boy.

I’ve had my eye on this book ever since I launched my reading challenge late last year. I knew this would be the book I reread after not enjoying it the first time around.

I mention this book so much on the blog and off of it that I’m used to jaws dropping to the ground when I tell people what I think of it. It’s the best.

But YOU don’t know if the second time around changed my opinion! And I’m not going to tell you. Either watch or don’t Blah.

Fun fact: This was the first book I ever reread that wasn’t written by me.

Who is Jamie Oliver?

The other night I’m on YouTube watching Jennifer Lawrence video after Jennifer Lawrence video from her press tour for the new movie Passengers. I easily did this for two hours straight.

Anyway, during her appearance on The Graham Norton Show she was joined by Jamie Oliver. Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence are probably the two biggest movie stars in the world today, so I’m sitting there trying to figure out who this other guy is with them. They talked about him having dyslexia and reading Catching Fire after seeing Jen as Katniss.

Then Graham Norton said something I actually couldn’t believe. This mystery man I’d never even heard of is the bestselling nonfiction author EVER in the UK. WHAA?

Tell me about this guy. I haven’t looked him up yet.

One Day

Being unemployed gives one plenty of time to think. Time to think about work. Time to think about life. Time to think about the big picture, as they say. And I’ve been thinking.

There are things I’d like to do at some point. Lots of traveling, duhh. Side note: visiting BOSTON in April! But there are also goals that some would consider lofty. I don’t. Not out of arrogance, but because I know me. I know what happens when I push myself. I know what happens when I challenge myself. I know the only limits that’ll be placed upon me are those I’ll place upon myself. Which is why I don’t limit myself in anything.

But let me get back to the point here. I’ve known for quite some time now that I plan on pursuing public office later in life. I don’t think for a second it’ll be easy or simple, heck, I think it’d be the most difficult thing I ever pursue. But I can’t tell you how strongly I feel about this. I may never become an elected official, but there will come a time in which my name is on the ballot. Because I won’t accept that it’s too hard.

Do you believe that I’ve said all this and I haven’t reached the point of this post yet? Ha!

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about causes and issues I want to tackle. I mean, I’m about to turn 25. And boy, there are many. But that whole unemployment thing is quite limiting. So I’ve been thinking more than I’ve been doing. I’ve decided to start a nonprofit organization to promote literacy. Again, there’s no timeframe for this. But some people gain satisfaction from money or material possessions, but me? I’d love nothing more than to go to work each day with a small group of people promoting literacy.
I know what you’re thinking. Why not volunteer for an organization or work for one? I could. I’m not taking that off the table. I’ll just have to see what happens.

My message to you is this: I know some of the things I’m going to fight for and support throughout my life, and I imagine more will come into focus along the way. The causes and issues you care about are guaranteed to be different from mine. And that’s great! Because there’s no shortage of incredible causes around the world. Find what you’re passionate about and do something about it. So many people think it’s only about money. It isn’t. Maybe volunteer in your city. Maybe share the link to an ongoing fundraiser. Maybe use your blog to talk about an organization you’re involved with.

Now tell me about just one cause or organization you’re really passionate about. You know one of mine is literacy. I’ll share another. Hunger. My brother will tell you how much I HATE seeing people just throw away food. Now tell me what you’re passionate about!