Sunday Lowdown #120


Sometimes, weekly highlights are hard to write. Is a “highlight” something big, meaningful? Or small mercies? Like the return of my left hearing aid after it was sent away for repair. I had a loner whose brand did not match my original, and I’ve been off kilter for two weeks with it. Imagine your prescription glasses had one correct lens and one that was noticeably too strong. But it’s your ears.

Or is a funny moment a “highlight”? Imagine me, the spouse, Biscuit, and my dad last Sunday at Ninja Golf!, where they had a special one-day craft show. And then lo, two huge turkeys hiding in the bushes about 6 feet from me — were they social distancing turkeys?? — gobbled obscenely and I almost wet myself.

Or picture me, reclining on the couch, reading happily for about an hour. When I roll over to stand up, I’m 99% positive I’ve actually wet myself. In reality, I forgot I had a cream soda resting on my leg, and when I rolled I perfectly spilled it in the crotch of my shorts.

My library is now completely re-open as we were pre-pandemic. As a fully vaccinated person who sits behind a plastic barrier and still doesn’t get too close to people, I’ve decided to not wear my mask anymore. Many folks don’t feel the same way, but my attitude on this is to live by science, not feelings. Is it surreal? Yes, yes it is.


The YA werewolf series I shared may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but S.M. Reine always brings it. The Cain Chronicles oscillates between gore and teen love triangle, throwing in surprises and humor to keep skeptical readers entertained.

Have you read her work yet? Chavisa Woods brings passion, wit, memorable characters, whimsy, and a pinch of fearfulness in her short stories, novel, and memoir. In Woods’s Meet the Writer feature, we got to know more about the person behind the words.


Right after Biscuit and I finished a fictionalized story of the serial killer Belle Gunness, we picked up a new memoir/investigative journalism work by Liza Rodman and Jennifer Jordan called The Babysitter: My Summers with a Serial Killer. We honestly don’t read much true crime; these titles happened to end up together in our reading. Review Tuesday.

Bastion is book quintet in the Collegium Chronicles quintet by Mercedes Lackey. Would it be a dud of an end to the series? Would Jackie @ Death by Tsundoku and I get tired of this character, his friends, his Companion, all of #ReadingValdemar? There were surprises I could not have guessed! Review Thursday.


Owned Books on TBR at Beginning of Year: 242
Owned Books on TBR Today: 218


  1. I sometimes have glasses with one good lens and one weak lens and then I realise one lens has fallen out, hopefully somewhere where I haven’t walked on it. I wet myself at school camp one time, splashed a lot washing my hands so I was wet in patches all over, but no one was deceived. Return to Coolami will be a complete change of pace for your Eleanor Dark reading, hope you enjoy it.


    • If you can go for a while with your lens out and not notice immediately, they must not be terribly strong to begin with. If my lens fell out I’d probably tip over.

      Good plan with the hand washing! You also could have jumped in the lake fully clothed and said it was the cool thing to do. Kids are wacky at camp.

      I read through the first page of Return to Coolami and enjoyed the style in which it was written, so I’m hoping that even though it is different, it’s still an interesting story.


  2. Hahaha. Whatever strikes one as news in a given moment, I s’pose. It all works. Does that mean you found another Eleanor Dark, or are you just wanting to read that one as well?


  3. Surprise turkeys are no joke!
    Actually they are but man can they really startle a girl!
    As a vaccinated person at a pharmacy, I will wear my mask. I’m around sick people all day. Outside of work? Depends where I am. It being Michigan, I know a crap ton of people are lying about being vaccinated BUT they’re more likely to get sick than I will. I might be out of work for the week but I won’t be hospitalized so it’s their dumb fault. That being said, I just don’t feel like being sick. It’s finally summer and I want to have some fun with my vaccinated friends!


    • You’re right about being around sick people. I know the seasonal flu was almost non-existent this year because of masks, and the health providers were so happy to not have that extra burden. I’m still sitting away from people and have a big plastic wall in front of me, so I feel pretty good.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Personally, I like the little highlights. I like the reminders that life can be made up of lots of little good things! Though as someone who needs glasses/contact lenses to function, I bet getting a proper hearing aid was a big highlight.


    • You’re right, and I always enjoy the small moments in your blog posts, Karissa. Though, perhaps part of that is you have photos of lovely children who remind me of innocence and sweetness.


  5. I like getting to read whatever you deem to be a highlight! It’s nice to have a personal connection to a person aside from books. 🙂

    Masks are optional in our county and library system now, but I’m still wearing mine at work for now. Partly because it makes me feel more secure, and partly for the kids and immuno-compromised people who might be around. I know that as a vaccinated person the risk of me giving something to someone is small, but it’s not zero, so that’s my calculus on it. But I get why vaccinated people choose not to wear one. Also, my kid still wears one when we go out, because he’s too young to get a vaccine, so I wear one in solidarity. We are not yet fully back to pre-pandemic operations (no indoor programming yet, not all the computers available) but we just stopped quarantining items today and we brought back all the chairs we had in storage.


    • We just fully reopened on Thursday or Friday. The computer lab has been half open, but no sitting elsewhere, which is really hard to “police.” The spouse and I went to the grocery store yesterday, and I noticed adults not wearing their masks while their children did, and that made me happy. It shows the understand that although they don’t all need to wear masks at home, the unvaccinated family members do in public. My nieces and nephew (4 kids) are coming for a visit this weekend, and they will need to wear their masks everywhere. Biscuit, who is also coming, mentioned wearing a mask in solidarity. Our programming is back on at the library, but not for minors. It’s still virtual or outside.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Wowee it must feel so weird to not wear a mask indoors! Things are still very much locked down here, and masks are still mandatory, but most of us have only had one shot so makes sense. I can’t wait until I don’t have to wear a mask anymore, my chin keeps breaking out! Ugh.


    • It’s nice because, as I mentioned, I’m still not close to anyone, or if I do get closer, it’s not for more than a few seconds. Usually, covid is transmitted with 10-15 minutes of exposure, so all the eating folks did together…. It’s weird, but I feel that I have to be brave or I’m going to be afraid forever.

      Liked by 1 person

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