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Silent but not unproductive.

I haven't posted in a little while because I damaged myself shoveling snow. Even though my heart can take a lot my muscles are still puny and underdeveloped. If we really do have another snowstorm in the middle of next week I might seriously consider taking my own life. Fluffy snow is one thing, ice boulders are another. Over the past few weeks I've felt like Sisyphus trying to push the rock up the hill. Just where in the hell are we supposed to be putting all this snow? The piles on the sides of the driveway are five feet high. And it's been too cold for anything to melt. Somebody save us from this horrible plague of winter! ::screams::

I have managed to wrap up a few things over the past few days. 1). I finished reading Titus Alone 2). I finished rerooting Maya (though she still needs her hair curled) 3). I managed to get the Sarai ending in elan plus 4). I made a lot of meatballs 5). I watched a few movies.

The meatballs and Maya are the only things I can talk about safely without a cut! We've made Cook's Illustrated's Swedish Meatballs many times, but this is the first time we tried making their Italian-Style Meatballs The recipe was for spaghetti with meatballs, but we ended up making meatball grinders instead, with melted mozzarella cheese on top. I think I may have discovered my new favorite thing! Storebought frozen meatballs are so gross, and jarred tomato sauce is just as bad. I'm glad we were able to find a recipe for smooth tomato sauce that doesn't require the use of a blender.

Maya didn't take me nearly as long as Alma and Nao. The sky-blue/azure blue mesh looks nice, and I'm surprised that I was able to pull off side-parted hair with straight-across bangs without having to constantly check back and fill in bald spots. I ended up using one and a quarter large format skeins. I guess that's only of interest to me, though.

I'm not sure what to think about Titus Alone, because I'm having a hard time figuring out what the author was trying to say. I think that nine years passed between the publication of Gormenghast and Titus Alone, and you can definitely sense that distance. As you can deduce from the title, Titus is the only recurring character in the third book. And what an annoying, whiny, prideful, self-important prick he turned out to be! In addition to the flaws he manifested at the end of Gormenghast, he is also now a pervert who has to have sex with every woman he lays eyes on, regardless of age or whether or not he finds the lady morally repugnant. Not like you couldn't see that coming from the way he handled the Thing in the previous book, though. XD

The book wasn't all bad. I found the cyber-punk setting to be intriguing, and the new characters like Muzzlehatch and Juno were mildly interesting. I was completely baffled by the character of Cheeta, though. She's a rich, spoiled "princess" who catches Titus's eye because she represents modern technology. She has a lot of toys, she wears a lot of makeup and flies around in a helicopter. She's also pure evil because 1). she represents science over nature and 2). She's FRIGID and won't have sex with Titus, even when he talks dirty to her and grabs her boob!

Cheeta is by no means a likeable character, but Peake constantly reminds the reader that she's evil and soulless because after Titus gropes and teases her a bazillion times she decides to get revenge and try to make him go insane. So she traps him in a faux-stage version of Gormenghast and mocks his noble family, which makes him tear his hair out and scream a lot. The author points out that what Cheeta does to Titus is far, far worse than him licking her neck and cracking jokes about her goodies being stitched up to protect her from men because his only crime was that he didn't love her, he only wanted to have sex with her. And was that so wrong? Ha ha ha...

So my question is: what the hell was Peake thinking with this book? What is he trying to say about men and women? I don't think anyone really knows the answer to that. His treatment of women who will have sex with Titus as Good, women who won't have sex with Titus as innately Evil doesn't fit at all with the first two books. I only hope that since this series was allegedly meant to continue Peake intended to make Titus pay for his crimes. I don't know. Titus Alone was one of those books with some fascinating elements but something so fundamentally screwed-up about it that after you finish you want to take a long bath, or hit something.

I busted my butt and got the Sarai Ending in elan plus. For all the work I had to do, earning first place on every test and hunting him down four times, it was kind of an anticlimax. You only get two still shots in Gallery Mode, how cheap! He was cute and all, but pairing with one of the regular candidates was actually more rewarding.

I was going to talk about the movies I watched, but I think the entry is too long as it is. I still haven't finished writing Chapter Five. I have made progress, though!