Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Random Thoughts and some Short Stories

Sheesh. It kind of feels like I dropped off the face of the earth!! Things have been rather crazy lately....starting with last week's earthquake. Who would have thought I would feel an earthquake? I mean, I live in Illinois! Of course, I did know there was a fault line 'down' there (West Salem is about 3 1/2 hours South of me). But never thought I would actually feel the earth move like that!! At 4:37 am, I was actually awake...and at work!! The tables started shaking, and things were rattling. Kind of creepy!!

On the downside of things, I have an appointment next week with an orthopedic surgeon. I think I might have torn my rotator cuff. Bummer. Being the incredible klutz that I am, I fell about a month and a half ago. I tried to catch myself. Bad move on my part. My shoulder has been KILLING me ever since. It's so bad some days, I can barely lift my arm. The deciding factor was when I tried pitching to the girlies. Softball practice has started, and I love to get out there and play with them. I hurt so bad by the time it was done, I had to lay down. So....I finally figured it was time to go see a doctor. Not sure what they can do about it....but in the meantime, I do have a wonderful prescription of pain killers!!

Busy, busy, busy with work....softball practices (for both girls) and Ana has soccer games now. At least the weather is looking up. High today is 78!!

Although I missed Short Story Monday (and even Tuesday!) I decided I would still post my thoughts on a few more of Joe Hill's 20th Century Ghosts stories. (Man...if you didn't know Joe Hill was Stephen King's son, all you have to do is look at this picture. He's the spitting image of Uncle Steve!)

You Will Hear the Locusts Sing is the story about an 18-year-old boy that wakes up and has turned into a bug!! And not just any bug, but a giant, scary, flying cockroach!! Although the story is reminiscent of Kafka's Metamorphosis, there is a lot more to it than that. Francis lives in Arizona, where testing of Atomic bombs have taken place. It's a good story about a boy that was alienated at school and picked on. And what he does when he gets the chance to fight a bug. Kind of Kafka meets Columbine!!

Abraham's Boys is a wonderful story that does a bit of retelling of the old Dracula legend. But it doesn't focus on the vampire, but the vampire hunter: Van Helsing. Abraham Van Helsing is now living in America with his two sons, Maximilian and Rudolph. Their mother (Mina Harker) has passed away and they had to "run" to America because of a scandal created by Van Helsing's insistence of the vampire tales. He is not a kind man. Rather he is mean, over-bearing and set in his ways. He insists the boys be home before dark, and has a study that is under lock and key. When the boys stumble into the study one day, a picture is found that puts the vampire story into perspective. But what I really liked is the idea that maybe vampires DON'T exist.....maybe Van Helsing is just plain insane!!

Finally, Better Than Home is not a ghost story at all. It's about the coach of a Major League Baseball team from New England (hmmm..could we talking about the Red Sox here?) and his son, Homer. Homer is really young, but has a lot of issues. He is afraid of lots of different kinds of food, certain noises drive him batty, and he's a little on the OCD side. Nice father/son story though.

Although I didn't like these stories nearly as much as last week, I was still entertained. Hill definitely inherited some storytelling ability, and I think he will turn out to be a fine writer some day!!

Now....I'm off to get some sleep!!


Darla D said...

I'm so sorry about your shoulder, Stephanie! I hope it gets better soon. It sounds awfully painful.

I remember experiencing a slight earthquake when I lived in Illinois (outside Chicago). I remember how forcefully it made me realize how fragile our illusion of being in control of things actually is! Kind of humbling, isn't it?! Definitely a bit creepy. :-)

Stephanie said...

Darla - Yeah...the shoulder thing sucks. I can't believe had bad it still hurts. I hate doctors anyway, but it's time to do something.

Very creepy. Especially the couple of aftershocks that hit us later that day!

Debi said...

Oh gosh, Stephanie, I do hope your shoulder gets better soon...and without having to do anything drastic! It sounds awful!

It's so weird how some people look so much like their parents, isn't it? You're right...he is the spitting image of his dad!

Nymeth said...

I hope your shoulder gets better, Stephanie. Being in constant pain is terrible :(

These stories sound good, though like you said not quite as good as last week's. Still, this is a collection I really want to read!

Chris said...

That is so crazy about that earthquake! I'm glad everyone was ok over there. I'm so sorry to hear about your shoulder :( That's horrible...really horrible, but I'm glad you have those pain killers to help!

The short stories sound great again! I really need to get that one!

Lisa said...

Sorry to hear about your shoulder. Hopefully you won't have to have surgery. Thank God for pain pills. :)
Haven't read Joe Hill, yet, but these do sound good. Hope things calm down for you soon.

Melody said...

Stephanie, I hope your shoulder gets better soon!

I read about Joe Hill's book from a fellow bookblogger recently and I know I want to get that book!!!

Trish said...

Oh how scary! When hubby told me the other day there was an earthquake in Illinois I couldn't believe it. I'm glad you and your family are safe.

DesLily said...

ouch! sorry about your shoulder, I've had the exact thing! I got lucky and given certain excercises eventually it got better.. I hope you get the same luck!

also glad you were not too close to the quake. Feeling it shake some and being far away from the epicenter isn't too bad.. ya just don't want to be a the me on this!

Andi said...

Stop with your tempting, irrestistable posts!!! lol OK, don't stop. Don't stop at all. You've almost got me convinced to order my very own hardcover copy of 20th C. Ghosts.

naida said...

hi, wow an earthquake? that is scary.

hope your shoulder feels better.

Joe Hill looks just like his dad!

Iliana said...

Oh no, not good about your shoulder! I hope all goes well when you go see the doctor. Hopefully some physical therapy is all that will be needed.
I'm still reading Heart-Shaped Box by Hill. So good!

Kim L said...

that's hard to believe you felt an earthquake!! I'm in Minnesota, not really that far away from Illinois.

I hope they are able to help you with your shoulder. That really sucks!

The short stories you mentioned sound really interesting.