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Archive for November, 2011

[AN: all notes are taken verbatim from the book. I claim not rights to them]

The Book of Lost Books by Stuart Kelly

It is the intrinsic nature of literature that it is written: even work initially preserved in oral tradition only truly becomes literature when it is written down.

Is becoming lost the best that can happen to a book?

To those of whom no trace remains, this book is an offering. For we will join them all in the end.

Collection at the library of Alexandria was started with Aristotle’s personal collection

Lost, Meander was a genius; Found, he was an embarrassment

If the whole of philosophy is merely footnotes to Plato, then the entirety of Christian theology is an attempt to unravel the insights of Paul.

Centro>>patchwork; a writer rearranges lines by another poet to create a wholly new poem

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[AN: All notes are taken verbatim from the book. I claim no rights to them.]

Martha: On Trial, In Jail, and On a Comeback by John Slater

  1. John Cuti>>>married to Alexis for a time
  2. She feels that she is finally reading the outside reality in a way that can be helpful to her
  3. She now knows that it had been her own distorted version of that outside reality that had gotten her into such trouble
  4. It was assumed that even if Martha passed on, her iconic stature would serve as the company’s anchor forever
  5. She assumed that just being Martha Stewart was enough to ward off any assault on her world
  6. She knew how to marginalize people, to trivialize them, to make them feel inferior to her
  7. She began to believe that she really did know what was best for everyone. That became her vision of reality
  8. Her taste, her preferences, her rules prevailed. As the teacher, she was always right, never wrong.
  9. She had no time for anyone who did not conform to her view of reality
  10. Martha Stewart received more media coverage since OJ
  11. She was disciplined, perfectionist, ambitious, knew how to take charge, knew how to do a great many things at once
  12. More than greed that impelled her to order the stock sale>>it was hubris, the belief that she was above it all
  13. To admit that she did something wrong is not in her character
  14. Being a perfectionist means never having to say you’re sorry
  15. Indicted on6-4-2003
  16. All that she had to do was get on the stand and apologize. All she had to say was that she didn’t have the mental intent to violate the law. All she had to do was humanize herself—and she would have gotten off
  17. Martha Stewart never showed emotion; meanwhile, Stewart’s daughter Alexis did show emotion
  18. Better question to ask is not whether she was innocent or guilty of some crime, but how big a crime was it that she committed?
  19. Conceded to Alexis that her life had been wasted
  20. Reasons why MSLO would survive:
    1. Large cash reserves
    2. Lack of debt
    3. Ability to launch new products
    4. Andy Stewart wrote a letter to his former wife, saying how sorry he was and asking if there was anything he could do to help
    5. Sad about verdict, extremely concerned over Alexis
    6. She promised herself she would try to make a comeback
    7. Rather than trivialize and marginalize anything that stood in her way; she’d have to deal with them in a whole new way and take them seriously
    8. She never fully came to terms with being in prison
    9. Referred to Alderson as Yale, so she’d never have to say the word “jail”
    10. Ever after she had been out for six months, she found it nearly impossible to mention the “j” word
    11. She lost 10 lbs in jail
    12. Donald Trump thought it was ridiculous that Martha Stewart was in jail and OJ was playing golf inFlorida
    13. She had the public and the media eating out of her hand. In five short months, the personality makeover was complete
    14. Compared to house arrest, prison was the essence of freedom. She found house arrest “confining.”
    15. She had to emphasize she was Martha Stewart the Icon, not Martha Stewart the Felon
    16. The actual reason for Martha’s delay in ending house arrest was never clearly discussed in public
    17. While on probation, she couldn’t travel to her homes inMaineor theHamptonswithout permission
    18. She says someday she’ll talk about her time in prison, but not right now

Pg 219: “Her fame—and her infamy—pushed all other news aside for the moment. On the day of her release, millions of people were trying to recover from a deadly tsunami; one of the worst natural disasters of the era; a beloved and venerate Pope was dying in Rome, affecting at least one billion people on the planet; a 45-year-old singer and dancer, the most popular figure in popular music of his day, was on trial for alleged sexual abuse of children. But on this day in early March 2005, Martha Stewart’s prison release was the top story of the day.”

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Book Notes: Being Martha

[AN: All notes are taken verbatim from the book. I claim no rights to them.]

Being Martha by Lloyd Allen

  1. Introduction
    1. Somewhere along the line, the media portrayal of Martha became a cross of Betty Crocker & Cruella de Vil
  2. Martha & Me
    1. Martha’s hands were never idle
    2. It was often noticed that Alexis was ignored
    3. Alexis was often glad when someone other than her mother picked her up from school
    4. Has a hard time saying thank you or I’m sorry even if she was feeling it
  3. Growing Up Kostyra
    1. Martha Sr. hates it when she reads things negative about her late husband
    2. Martha is exactly like her father
    3. Martha fell for Andy HARD!
  4. Keeping Home
    1. She’s always teaching me something. That’s my mother in a nutshell. If you can teach her something, she will listen to you. If she doesn’t understand, she will ask questions.
    2. She is fascinated with acquiring knowledge
    3. Knowledge to her isn’t the 3R’s but S>>>skill, and the more skills you know, the further you will get in life
    4. Most daughters fight with their mothers about issues. Your mother would like it her way and you want it your way
    5. Stories about Alexis and Martha are exaggerated
  5. No Limits
    1. She knows when a house has good bones, a recipe has good flavor, and when a person has good skills
    2. You don’t schmooze with Martha. She’s not going to have a pajama party with you. She’s a different species
    3. Martha didn’t ask her staff to do anything she wouldn’t do herself
    4. She could be a tyrant, but she was right there with us all the way
    5. Martha was a tough teacher, but often those are the people who teach us the most
  6. Mentoring
    1. Working with her was bootcamp in how to start and run a business
    2. Martha always regretted her outbursts, even if she could not articulate it in the way people wanted her to
    3. Martha was not the type of friend to cry with and smother with hugs & kisses
    4. “Operate beyond all normal limits!”
    5. Drink ample amounts of coffee if you couldn’t keep up with her
    6. Tough for a man is great. Tough for a woman, she’s a bitch.
    7. Martha always believed nothing was insurmountable and that when an opportunity comes your way, it was put in front of you for a reason
    8. Her words could sting but she usually meant nothing by it
    9. She had the will and the way to get whatever she wanted
    10. Almost everyone who deserved credit got it. Those who didn’t are the one complaining.
    11. Martha is special like an artist, and when you throw in an intellect that is off the charts, you get someone who may not act like the rest of us.
    12. You have to really understand the dynamic and the near insanity of being that  brilliant to really get a handle on Martha
    13. Martha provokes a longing in people>>>they want to get close to her, but that can never happen. She’s her own person-a private person
    14. Martha’s going to be as big as McDonald’s
  7. Doing Everything
    1. Parody books
    2. Martha Stewart’s Better Than You Are at Entertaining
    3. Is Martha Stewart Living?
    4. Martha Stewart’s Excruciatingly Perfect Weddings
    5. She never spoke about Andy after he left
    6. Her mind was very quick; either she like your idea or she didn’t
    7. She even insisted on having lunch with us. Having lunch together was important to her.
    8. Once yelled at truckers ruining her stone driveway>>”Get the hell off my driveway!”
    9. Due to a foot injury, once did a show segment on one foot
    10. Around Martha, humor was a survival technique
    11. Find me another human being running a business who isn’t controlling
  8. The Going Gets Tough
    1. Until you travel with Martha, you don’t fully know Martha
    2. Martha thinks that whatever anyone does is important
    3. She can’t deal with emotions the way most people do. And yet you can sometimes feel how desperately she wants to have someone to talk to
    4. 1997-Alexis marries a lawyer
    5. Martha is neither terribly masculine or feminine
  9. On Trial
  10. Another Place to be Martha
    1. Alexis is one of the few people who can beat Martha in Scrabble
    2. Next to Alderson Prison, Wal-Mart was the most happenin’ place in town
  11. Back Home
    1. There is a disagreement among family & friends as to whether Martha has “changed” since prison
  12. Moving Forward
    1. Martha may be a young girl at heart. She doesn’t just stand there by herself and appreciate things-she shares what she sees with the rest of us
  13. Epilogue: Martha Triumphant

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[AN: All notes are taken verbatim from the book. I claim no rights to them.]

Martha Stewart by Charles Shields

  1. Chapter 1: The Wrong Spoons
    1. Customers trust Martha more than their doctors
  2. Chapter 2: Growing up in Nutley, NJ
    1. Growing up, the house rule was “don’t cry”
      1. Was such an avid reader
      2. Even read the banned books
  3. Chapter 3: Trading Up
  4. Chapter 4: Catering & Entertaining
    1. Look up what type of fruit a quince is
  5. Chapter 5: Single & “Living”
    1. Martha and Andy were married for 27 years
    2. He left her
  6. Chapter 6: TV & Time Magazine
    1. Martha once hiked Mt. Kilermanjaro
    2. Interviewed Hilary Clinton
    3. Named one of “America’s 25 Most Influential People” by TIME mangazine
    4. Martha was said to be furious at the unauthorized biography Just Desserts
  7. Chapter 7: Just Dessertsto Shares
    1. Betty Crocker from Hell
  8. Chapter 8: From Westport to Westchester County
    1. No longer felt accepted by the community
    2. One neighborhood slammed that door in her face
  9. Chapter 9: Looking Ahead

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[AN: All notes are taken verbatim from the book. I claim no rights to them.]

Martha Stewart: a Biography by Joann F. Pierce

1)      Chapter 1

a)      Father instilled perfectionist mentality

b)      Her daughter is the same way

2)      Chapter 2

a)      Paternal grandparents were from Poland

b)      Maternal grandparents also from Poland

c)       Father seems to be biggest influence>>>always demanding perfection

3)      Chapter 3

a)      Through academia she was determined to do her best

b)      Nothing but excellence was acceptable

4)      Chapter 4

a)      The abusive & domineering traits that she witnessed as a child by her father in respect to her mother, were repeated all over again by Martha in her own way

5)      Chapter 5

a)      So ambitious, she’s not afraid to burn bridges

6)      Chapter 6

a)      “Remember I’m not Martha Stewart the person anymore, I’m Martha Stewart the lifestyle”

7)      Chapter 7

a)      “I have learned that I cannot really be destroyed”

b)      Always at the center of everything, with all business aspects radiated from her

c)       2001-most written about woman in America; and the world, save for Queen Elizabeth II

8)      Chapter 8

9)      Chapter 9

a)      The prison she was sent to was called Camp Cupcake

b)      Started back in the 1920s

c)       First federal women’s prison

d)      No privacy

e)      Guards can walk in at any time

f)       Mainly low-income women with a history of drug & sexual abuse

g)      Lost 20 lbs. because the food was so bad

h)      Claims her stress level was cut in half during her stay

i)        She couldn’t make any business decisions

j)        Was allowed to hear what was going on with her business

10)   Chapter 10

a)      Decided to refocus the business on ordinary everyday people, not the upper-crust

b)      “I can almost bend steel with my mind. I can bend anything if I try hard enough. I can make myself do almost anything.”

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Book Notes: Lefties

[AN: All notes are taken verbatim from the book. I claim no rights to them.]

Lefties: The Origins & Consequences of Being Left-Handed by Jack Fincher

  1. That believing that in all our actions there is a natural difference between right and left hands…the stupidity of nurses and mothers has made us all one-armed…Indeed, the natural aptitude of the two arms is the same, and it is ourselves who have made them unequal and who do not use them as we should. (pg 35)
  2. The wedding ring is placed on the third finger of the left hand—the “charm finger” in superstition—to ward off black magic with the power thought to reside in the precious metal. (pg 38)
  3. The right may have gotten the upper hand, through something as simple as a man’s need to shield his heart in battle while wielding his weapon. (pg 60)
  4. Only man among all things living prefers the right to the left. (pg 63)
  5. The universe, or so we imagined, was ambidextrous—in theory, if not always in fact. (pg 64)
  6. For the social dictates of custom in clothing are as asymmetric as language. (pg 71)
  7. Even parity: an even number added to another even number; an odd number added to an even number (pg. 87)
  8. Odd Parity: an odd number added to an odd number (pg 87)

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