Monday, May 15, 2017

The Circle: A Book Review

The book The Circle is written by Dave Eggers. Eggers spins a story of a future that is truly not too far off from the world we are currently living in. A future where everyone shares every single aspect of their lives on-line. A future where cameras are every where and privacy is looked upon as something suspect.

This book follows the life of Mae Holland as she lands her dream job at a company called the Circle. This company actively encourages folks to track and share all of their life online. They promote the idea of community and closeness with those you have never met but converse with over the web. Obviously, the parallels to what we are seeing in our world today are many.

Those who chose not to share their every waking moment online quickly find that they are unable to interact with anyone freely or to easily earn a living. As the Circle begins to promote the slogan "Privacy is Theft," those who are uncomfortable with sharing their every thought are looked upon with suspicion. 

This book left me looking at my own online presence in a different light. I will admit I often find myself feeling thankful that the world of Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram was not around when I was in high school and college. I find myself feeling tremendous pity for those teens who find things shared about them against their wishes and have found I am less likely to share things about my own children in recent weeks. I've also noticed some push back from those who think that everything should be shared now. Eerily similar to the book. It has made me examine a few things more closely. 

The book does contain several sexual scenes which are more than excessive and unnecessary in detail. For this reason, I caution parents in sharing this book with your teens until after you have read it yourself.

Overall, I found The Circle to be an enjoyable book that definitely gave me a few things to ponder in my own life.

Real Life Math

Forget algebra kids. We have for you today a real life math problem. Or, as my husband corrected me, a Catholic math problem.

You must feed 12 people dinner (it is Mom and Dad's date night and they will eat after the children are in bed). You are serving hot dogs tonight because it is that kind of a night. The hot dogs come 24 to a package. The buns come 16 to a package. The baby will only eat baby food. The youngest toddler won't eat bread yet. The oldest toddler won't eat the buns but will want one to sit on his plate and hold his hot dogs before he devours them. The rest of the eaters are 6, 8, 9, 11, 12, 13, 15, 17, and 19. So how many of each package will you need to feed the crew and come out even?

This is the math they need to teach in school because this is the daily struggle, I tell you. You get it wrong and the teenagers will ransack the pantry after the littles are in bed and devour two weeks worth of snacks in one night. Oh, who am I kidding. They will do that even if you get the math right.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

How to Make Dinner. . .Or Something

Read carefully for an easy step by step tutorial on how to take dinner a family other than your own. Be sure to follow along exactly. If not, disaster may strike.

Step 1: Remove the chicken and broccoli casserole freezer meal you made a few weeks ago from the basement freezer the night before and place it in the basement fridge to defrost.

Step 2: The next afternoon, send a child downstairs with instructions to bring up the casserole from the FRIDGE, place it on a baking sheet, remove the cover, and put it in the oven at 300 degrees.

Step 3: A little while later, ask another child to please make 3 cups of rice in the rice cooker.

Step 4: Ask who wants to make brownies to go with dinner. Assign task to the willing 9 yo.

Step 5: Ask another child to please shred cheese and top the casserole with it. Said child notices the smell of brownies when he opens the oven and makes sure to ask if the cheese went in the right location because he realized cheese covered brownies would just not be a good thing. See, he was paying attention.

Step 6: Make a salad to go with dinner. Discover that the 1 yo has eaten almost all of the cherry tomatoes but decide that it will be ok with less than planned.

Step 7; Retrieve applesauce and salad dressing from the basement pantry and head upstairs to start packing the meal for delivery.

Step 8: Discover that the rice did not cook. Upon talking to the child who was assigned to make the rice, discover that they only plugged the rice maker in but never actually turned it on.

Step 9: Discover that the casserole put in the oven was retrieved from the FREEZER and not the FRIDGE and is a chicken parm casserole, not chicken and broccoli. And is now covered in cheddar cheese.

Step 10: Discover that the brownies are still mostly raw because they were placed in a 9 by 9 inch pan but cooked using the time for the 9 by 13 pan.

Step 11: Panic. Just a little. Because life. And it is now time to be out the door to deliver said dinner.

Step 12: Stop by the store and pick up cake and ice cream and pray it makes up for the chaos.

Step 13: Arrive with dinner and hear the kids say "But we already ate dinner." Laugh at the craziness of it all and say "Well, this can always go into the freezer for another day. And there's some ice cream so just make sure that doesn't get left out." Because ice cream makes everything better. Or something.