I feel myself sinking into my yearly bout of summer malaise and The Morbs. All I want to do is sit on the sofa with a bowl of cereal and a glass with more ice than iced tea, and a big stack of books. I’m feeling less than productive…though truly, if I look at the past three weeks, I’ve gotten quite a bit accomplished. Perhaps I’m pushing through the ennui and heat-induced existential angst, even if it doesn’t feel like that’s what is going on.
Usually when July rolls around, it’s time for our yearly re-watch of The Lord Of The Rings series. We curl up on the couch with the AC running at full blast, and we watch little Frodo and Samwise and Gandalf and all of their adventures, even though we know them by heart after these many years. The only other movies I can do that with are the Harry Potter series–and while I wouldn’t really consider these my favorite movies, they are the only ones that I can watch over and over and over again. I find them immensely comforting for frazzled nerves and burnt out synapses. I guess I can also re-watch Soapdish and Hedwig and the Angry Inch on loop forever, but they don’t provide the same soothing experience. Do you have any films on your shelves that you could watch once a year for the rest of your life and never grow tired of them?
Speaking of things that soothe of comfort…lately I’ve dipped my toe (or my waist, really, hur hur) into corsetry. Earlier this year when I stuffed myself into a pair of strangulating Spanx, an interesting benefit beyond flub containment was that I found the torso-pressure really comforting. Like a firm, prolonged hug. Fast forward a few months, and a few of my close friends mentioned that they had purchased corsets, and in the process of seasoning them, (the initial, light and brief wearing of them to get them to nicely conform to your body) they noticed similar mental health benefits. Naturally I couldn’t be left out of Corset Salon, so I purchased one as well, to give it a try. Pictured above is the Mesh Waspie C-201 from Orchard Corsets. I can’t find much in the way of scientific evidence touting corsets as a method of anxiety control –although I suspect it works similarly to the very popular Gravity Blanket in this regard–but what can I say? It works for me. I do notice that I’m able to slow down and breathe (ironically) when I am corseted up. My heart isn’t pounding a mile a minute, like it usually does all day long for no immediately discernible reason. For some reason it calms me. If you’ve got an explanation, I am all ears.
Though I did not revisit my side-quest reading challenge from last summer, I have come up with another idea to keep up the pace in my goal to read one hundred books this year. I discovered an email from 2016 wherein I shared with my friend Maika the books I planned to read that summer. Looking back, I maybe read one of them, and no doubt that’s because I was still catching up on the summer reading I had planned for the previous year! My mission this July, should I choose to accept it, is to read the following books that I listed in that missive from June 13, 2016. The Joan Aiken book is a funny thing; I had originally seen a mention of Joan Aiken in the Weird Fiction Review Blog’s review of The Monkey’s Wedding. I was terribly intrigued but then shortly thereafter lost the link to the blog, forgot the blog’s name and definitely forgot both the title of the book, as well as the author. This blog is one I find and lose again quite frequently over the years, and for some reason it never occurs to me to bookmark it, which is silly, because it is a vast treasure trove of future reading ideas! You should remember to bookmark it for yourself.
- Bone Map: Poems by Sara Eliza Johnson (I may have read this?)
- The People in the Castle: Selected Strange Stories by Joan Aiken
- Fragment of the Head of a Queen: Poems by Cate Marvin
- Sky Burial by Dana Levin
- Antidote by Corey Van Landingham