Dispatches from the Distancing – Day 16

There is one member of our household who seems to be struggling more than most with this quarantine—our cat, Alice.

Alice is not an especially social cat. In fact, she hates most humans. She adores Pat (strangely, considering he ignores her), she likes Lillie and I, and she tolerates Chris. She also seems okay with Pat’s brother, Wayne, and our friend Karen. Beyond that…she hates your guts.


But if anyone is feeling claustrophobic, it is Alice. There was a period of time when we thought it was a mutually beneficial agreement to let her wander in the garage in exchange for some high-quality mouse hunting. Unfortunately, Alice didn’t hold up her end of the deal and there is now poison in the garage, so she’s back in the house.
But, the rest of us are hanging in there. Pat shampooed some of the carpets tonight, although I still have to clean off the dining room table in preparation for home school tomorrow. Chris’s teacher is on the ball with all this and is holding a zoom class meeting in the mornings, starting tomorrow, so that the kids can interact. We will be freestyling it with Lillie for another week, although I understand that there will be a fair amount of “prep work” this week to get her and her fellow students ready to start off running.

And, now, it’s time for my book update.

I’m linking up with Kathryn at Book Date for her It’s Monday…What Are You Reading?blog hop.

Finished this week:

Let me just say that I finished a very strange combination of books this week!

Hope Rides AgainHope Rides Again (Obama Biden Mysteries #2) by Andrew Shaffer.  I enjoyed the first of these books and I’ve had the second sitting on my shelf, waiting for my plane ride to Arizona…which never happened. So, it kicked off my CV19 Quarantine reading. And it really was the perfect book for that—it’s silly and corny and liberally uses the word “malarkey.” I can’t say more than that, because it was a brain break for me, but one that I thoroughly enjoyed.






Maus IMaus I: My Father Bleeds History by Art Spiegelman. I don’t especially enjoy graphic novels, but this one is pretty much the gold standard. I will admit it took me a little while to get my mind into “graphic novel” mode, but once I did that, I couldn’t put it down. There are actually two stories here—the account of Art’s father’s experience in the Polish Ghetto and Art’s relationship with his father. Both are devastating. I have the 2nd volume waiting for me, and I may start it this week, but I’m giving myself a few days to recover from this.




A Very Stable GeniusA Very Stable Genius: Donald J. Trump’s Testing of America by Philip Rucker and Carol Leoning (audiobook). I started this in January and just finished it today. I will admit that I had to take several breaks from this one, only because this wasn’t exactly a break from reality. This is a fascinating book, but the only “new” things were actually minor details—like Donald Trump not knowing what Pearl Harbor was, what happened there, and why it was important. The big stuff, on the other hand, was all in the news. There was something that really bothered me about this book, although it has nothing really to do with the book. In many cases, it is pretty clear who Rucker and Leoning spoke to, and these people spoke very candidly. However, many of these people are also the same ones who are defying congressional subpoenas. So, while I credit the journalistic skills of Rucker and Leoning, I would have much rather that these people would have spoken openly in congress instead of “on the condition of anonymity” to the Washington Post.

What I’m Currently Reading:

Simon the FiddlerSimon the Fiddler by Paulette Jiles. I won an ARC of this one from Goodreads and dove into it right away. I’m quite enjoying this one. Jiles has a very vivid style of writing and her setting—Texas right after the Civil War—is one I’ve rarely encountered in books. People, this book makes me want to go to Texas…and that is saying a lot! I also really love the characters she has created. The titular character is fantastic—he’s kind of a rascal, but you still root for him to achieve his dreams. I’m only about 2/3 of the way through, but I’m savoring reading it.




I'll Be There For YouI’ll Be There For You: The One About Friends by Kelsey Miller (audiobook). This is my antidote to A Very Stable Genius. I mean, what is more comforting that Friends? I was, and am, a huge fan of the show (and, yes, I know that it is dated and problematic). I feel a special connection to it because it debuted on my 21st birthday. I’ve only just started it today (about 2 minutes after finishing A Very Stable Genius) so I have no real opinions on it yet, but I’m looking forward to a lot of nostalgia coming to my ears.

6 thoughts on “Dispatches from the Distancing – Day 16

  1. That is quite a mixed assortment of books! I’m glad that all of you (with the possible exception of the cat) are handling this new, enforced togetherness. Our state started distance learning today. I’m eager to hear how it is going and very glad to be retired. Come see my week here. Happy reading!


  2. I have read a couple of the “Trump” books, like Fire & Fury and Fear: Trump in the White House.

    I couldn’t decide if the Stable Genius book would be favorable to Trump….which I wouldn’t be able to handle, lol; I guess you had reservations about the sources.

    Poor Alice! We used to have an unsociable cat that seemed snooty; we called her Cleopatra.

    Stay safe…and enjoy your week.


  3. I wish I had thought to capture the growing expression on my face as I scrolled through your books. Oh my Lord that’s quite an assortment – super hero (ish)? Obama made me kind of sad because, well, current reality, sigh, and that was the bright spot. Lol (sad-laugh). Sounds like you’re handling lockdown well, cat notwithstanding. Stay safe and happy (?) reading.


  4. Oh I love the look of the Obama / Biden mystery book. Isn’t the cover so telling! Gave me a chuckle to hear the cat likes Pat but it’s not reciprocated. That’s the best!


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About Melinda