Sometimes you've got to draw your own asterisk. The goal this year was to read two books a month -- not too much of a stretch, but enough to require some thought, time and selectivity. This month I brought home John Brockman's "This Explains Everything" and Meghan Daum's "Unspeakable: And Other Subjects of Discussion". I also, however, brought home Otto, a 12-week-old Terrier-Chihuahua puppy. So while I technically "read" both Brockman and Daum's books, I can't tell you in any honesty that I finished them.
Daum's book was the stronger of the two. An honest, if self-obsessed, recount of her mother's death, her marriage, her decision on whether to have children and other character-defining moments of her 30s. The most interesting thing about Daum's writing is how it never implores you to like her. She seems to value revelation more than self-regard or perhaps earns that self-regard through revelation. In any event, it's an interesting read, and had I not had a pup nagging at my feet I might have gotten to the bitter end with it.
Brockman's book was a collection of short essays on the most beautiful scientific and sociological explanations for the way things are. Some essays ran just a few paragraphs others took pages, but they read like personal emails from a diversity of thinkers on everything from deja vu to gravity. There were some great pages in this book (I loved the essay on deja vu), but all in all the structure made it too strewn and shallow to make the book all that influential.
Now, let's talk about what I did learn in March...
Getting a puppy has been one of the more time-consuming but rewarding decisions of my life. Granted, it's hardly two weeks in, but something about fuzzy paws will make a person hyperbolic. Here's how I spent most of the month.
Actual Google Searches I Ran in March
Terrier/Chihuahua Mix Temperament
According to Google: Loving, protective, high-activity.
According to life: "Food-motivated"
Image Search: "Jack-Chi, Rat-Chi, BoChi, Malchi"
We do not know what kind of terrier is in Otto, but based on those ears, probably a Jack.
Terrier/Chihuahua Paw Size
"Are you sure he's not a lab? Those are big paws" - Every stranger we meet.
(For the sake of the size limit in my apartment lease, let's hope not.)
How much should I feed my puppy?
Otto would like to suggest that it should be 8-10 times a day.
How to get your puppy to sleep through the night?
See chart below
Are Aluminum cans safe for puppies?
Are plastic cups safe for puppies?
Are cardboard boxes safe for puppies?
Winner. Winner. Chicken Dinner
Natural remedies for my puppy's dry skin
Easily the yuppiest search I've ever run
Major Training Achievement for March:
Major Training Aspiration for April:
THIS (Also, "please leave my socks alone.")
Other Notable Observations
So, I'll take the asterisk this month. Measured by books completed, March was a little light. Measured in unbridled moments of puppy-joy? By that yard-stick March comes out on top. I do plan on returning next month with a collection of good reads. Would love a suggestion or two to kick things off. What have you read in any genre that's kept you thinking lately? Will happily reward any book recommendations with additional photos of Otto.