When did I become so lazy? When I first quit my job I was really ambitious. I was ready to go out there and prove to everyone that I could do this freelance thing. I’ve got some writing gigs and still manage to pay my rent. But really, I only work about one week out of the month. The rest of my time is spent sleeping, rolling around in my own filth, lazing around in my pajamas for the entire day, or schlepping books back and forth to the library.

At first this laziness was liberating, but lately I feel like such a loser. Really, who sits around the house everyday in their pajamas? I worry that one day Tony’s going to come home and tell me he’s sick of seeing me in the same outfit. I don’t think he’d ever really say that, especially because on some days I actually get dressed just before he comes home so that I look like I was out doing stuff. Or at least like I didn’t lie in bed the entire day.

Anywho, I have some real actual work I should be doing. I have two stories due next week that I haven’t even begun researching, much less begun scheduling interviews for it. I was assigned both stories more than a month ago. This is how lazy I’ve become. I can’t help myself. Really, I can’t.

In my only unlazy venture, reading, I have been quite successful. I read two books just this weekend and am halfway through another. So here goes books 21 and 22 for you all.

Book 21: Nature Girl by Carl Hiassen

Everything I’ve read about this book, including the cover, touts it as a mystery novel. But from the contents of the book I found no mystery. From page one we know the truth about the person who died. We know all the players. Every character in the book is there in plain site so I’m not really sure what the mystery is all about.

Aside from that though the book is really entertaining and still suspenseful. Basically the plot is about a South Florida woman, Honey Santana, who has stopped taking her meds. Without her meds she’s a little intense. She is insulted by a telemarketer and takes it personally. So she sets out to find this guy and teach him some manners by setting him up on a vacation from where else but a telemarketing scheme. There are a few other storylines going on at the same time, but I like Honey’s best. The book wasn’t great, but it was entertaining and an easy read.

Book 22: Jesus Land by Julia Scheeres

Jesus Land is a memoir about Scheeres’ experience growing up in a mixed race family. Her family being all white except for two adopted black brothers. Her youngest brother, David, is only about four months younger than her and they think of themselves as twins. One of my favorite lines from the book is right after she and David are attacked by a bunch of hicks in their new hometown in Indiana. When they get home Julia says “It’s just because we’re black.” Although she’s white, Julia was always confronted with the same racism as her brother because they were always together. Instead of being a “nigger” she was a “nigger lover,” which was just as bad in Indiana in the late 60’s.

The Scheeres family is devout Calvinists and the parents are constantly telling the children to turn the other cheek instead of reacting to the racism of the time. But even in their own home racism is seen. Julia sees it in the way her brothers are beaten for minor trespasses while she is merely grounded or sent to her room. For such beatings her older adopted brother begins punishing her, but she never tells because she doesn’t want to be responsible for another of his beatings. The parts about her being molested by her brother and later set up by him to be gang raped was really hard for me to read, but the rest of the book was exactly what I’d hoped for when I picked up the book. Especially the second half of the book, which is spent at Christian reform school in the Dominican Republic.

The second half of the book shows how religion can be contorted to mean anything the puveyors of said religion want it to mean. The children at the reform school are beaten and humiliated because they haven’t found Jesus, yet those who have see nothing wrong with their actions. The saddest thing about this book is that it has done nothing to get this school closed down. The school is still running, more than twenty years after Julia Scheeres and her brother attended. The whole time I was reading this all I could think was that the people running that school were never going to turn these children toward religion, rather they were teaching them to hate everything about it. I really recommend this book. It’s an amazing story.

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