Home > general > i wanted to use the title “i aten’t dead”

i wanted to use the title “i aten’t dead”

but as fun as it would be to use it, in the light of our dear friend terry’s plight it would seem rather inappropriate.

however, i will say that in the most light-hearted possible way i am indeed not dead!

it really has been one thing after another, and if i’ve learnt anything then its that moving house, getting a car and trying to get a new job all at the same time isn’t the greatest of ideas.

added to that, my role at work has also developed somewhat and so i don’t quite have as much time as i used to to read or write posts.

and then our bloody laptop is also in intensive care – again.

but you know, i think i’ve learnt something about time management through all this, an area which has never been my strong suit. rather than dissapear completely, as i have done of late, i’m hoping that when things get tough i’ll be able to operate in back-up mode (like when those emergency lights come on from the back-up power generator) and leave a comment on the sites on my blogroll at least once a week and put in, however short, one or two posts a week.

and there are a so many half-written book reviews so don’t be surprised if i post reviews of books that i read at the beginning of the year! and then there are still pictures of the new house, of our little village, of my mom’s cats and our cats to share…!

speaking of books, i’m having quite a good time with the ones i’m reading at the moment. i’m reading “the woman in white”, “strong motion” and “the dark knight returns or strikes back”. (i blame my confusion on that sequel. it has such a similar title that now i don’t know which is which – the first one is the first one and the second is the second.)

i’m enjoying “the woman in white” quite a bit. its really well written – smooth. its quite different from “sweeney todd”, the other victorian novel i read this year, in that this is far more crafted. its also nice to read something which is traditional. it has a carefully devised plot and characters that are sketched in great detail.

i’ve just started “strong motion”. jonathan franzen starts his novels in the strangest ways. almost obstinately. they just… start. plot-wise there’s clearly a feel of an introduction, but not really the feeling of an author starting a tale. it just starts!

i read “the dark knight” nearly 10 years ago. it was one of the earliest canonical comics i read and since reading it it has always been there in the back of my mind, growing. its weird how that happens! its almost as if my subconscious was rereading it… sort of like a cow rechewing grass. 

so, over all these years its been swirling in my mind and now i’m finally rereading it. initially it was quite funny. i started it and restarted it over and over. and paused and paused at various stages and thought about what i was reading. its because the meaning, the significance of the comic has become so nebulous. and yet, there is only so much that one can experience from one reading. i was foolishly trying to experience it all.

i’m reading it in a much more relaxed mode now. of course, i can’t help but try and drink in as much as possible of what makes it so good, poring over certain sequences and having a think about particular panels. but first and foremost i’m just reading for what it is – a good story.

Categories: general
  1. July 9, 2008 at 11:24 am

    “sort of like a cow rechewing grass”…now there’s some vivid imagery. 🙂 Glad to hear you’ve got a good batch of books going. I’ve wanted to read The Woman in White for a while, but have never gotten around to it. Too many damn good books out there, you know.

    Well, you certainly have had more than enough on your plate lately! That can definitely make for much stress! I hope things are starting to settle down for you. And don’t worry about posting…you know we’ll all be happy to get a little dose of Jean Pierre whenever you do get a chance!

  2. July 9, 2008 at 2:28 pm

    Hi JP! Sorry the instructions were so unclear for Annie’s game! Wasn’t sure where you might catch my message quicker, so I decided to answer here, too.

    You can write as many sentences as you want, just so you don’t use more than 10 of the words. So you could write 10 different sentences, each using one word. Or you could write 2 sentences using 2 words each and 6 sentences using 1 word each. However, you want to do it. And of course, you don’t have to use 10 words at all…just that 10 gives you the most chances of earning points. Did this make any more sense? If not, just ask. And feel free to knock me upside the head for not being more clear. 🙂

  3. jean pierre
    July 9, 2008 at 2:45 pm

    ah, cool. that makes sense. so the only limitation is that i can’t use more than 10 words?

  4. July 9, 2008 at 2:49 pm

    Will I be lynched if I say I’m not a fan of Frank Miller’s take on Batman? I can see why some people would be wowed by his iconic take, but I actually preferred the stories written by Jeph Loeb with art by Tim Sale (“The Long Halloween”). I’m also partial to Greg Rucka’s take on Batman for the “No Man’s Land” series. Just me I guess.

  5. jean pierre
    July 9, 2008 at 3:32 pm

    oh, no, i can very much see why people don’t like miller or his batman. he does things in extremes!

    i liked “long halloween” a lot and i absolutely loved “no man’s land”. one of the best things i’ve read! it was such a slooow burner. i’d been collected batman right through contagion and cataclysm and all that, so all in all it was such a good story for me.

  6. jean pierre
    July 9, 2008 at 3:37 pm


    aw thanks…! 😀

    and yeah, there are waaay too many good books out there…!

  7. July 9, 2008 at 4:16 pm

    I got into comics for the first time as an adult reading both the sandman series and the Miller’s Dark Knight graphic novel. I really enjoyed it and found it an interesting/entertaining take on the character. I can imagine some folks not getting into it, but I really like it. I didn’t think the sequel was good at all, but will be interested in your thoughts.

    I started Woman in White last year during the end of the RIP challenge and was enjoying it, but then got lost in Tolkien and other things as I do every November and have not gotten back to it. I need to as I’ve heard only good things and was really taken by what I had read.

  8. July 9, 2008 at 5:02 pm

    I know what you mean about life sort of taking over everything JP and having everything happen at once. Why do things have to always work like that where everything happens at once?? Ah well, we’ll still be here when you get back to “normal” whatever that may be. Hope things settle down for you soon!

    I’ve been wanting to read The Woman in White since last years RIP challenge. I’ve heard almost nothing but good about it…just one bad review that I can remember. I’m sure I’ll enjoy it though whenever I get to it. I’ve also been wanting to read some Franzen. I’ve heard he’s great!

  9. jean pierre
    July 11, 2008 at 8:13 am


    my first reading of “the dark knight” was weird. i wasn’t too sold on it at first, but, as i said, it grew in my mind as more and more i understood what miller was on about.

    i can’t remember dk2 at all. i have this vague memory of it, but i don’t even know if i read all of it! a friend of mine was getting them in monthly installments, and i remember reading at least one. but then, i think i may have come to england before the last installment… i can’t remember. anyway, i’ve bought dk2 as well, so i’ll be finding out soon enough!

    most people don’t like it though, i’ve noticed…

    perhaps RIP III will provide you with an opportunity to revisit the woman in white…?



    yeah, the same’s happened to you!

    so far “the woman in white” is good. its a solid mystery. well-written. i don’t think there’s anything bad anyone can say about it, although i think people who don’t like mystery might perhaps find it boring. or people on the other end of the spectrum, who expect more thrills from a mystery may find it boring too.

    i rather like franzen. he does polarize opinion though. i can see why – he skirts dangerously close to pretension…!

  10. July 11, 2008 at 10:14 pm

    I would like to read it then, JP. But my RIP III pile is already so out of control!!!!

  11. July 12, 2008 at 3:59 pm

    Good to know you are still alive and kicking!! I’ve wondered what happened to you!! Of course, you seem to be in the middle of some huge life changes, so I’ll give you a break!!

    Glad to see you are back and doing well!! You’ve been missed.

  12. July 12, 2008 at 5:59 pm

    You know, JP, I bet Terry still wants people to use “I aten’t dead”. The way you said it was definitely NOT inappropriate. I know what you mean about everything happening at the same time, and computer troubles on top of that is just bad luck :/

    The Woman in White sounds great! That’s one I’ve been curious about for a while, and I appreciate the encouragement to finally read it.

  13. jean pierre
    July 14, 2008 at 11:13 am


    i can imagine!!! 😀


    i’ve missed you guys too!


    i’m glad you think so! i guess i just didn’t want to be disrespectful – or flippant or crass or something…

    i agree with you too – i reckon terry would love people to still use it – and as unconsciously as possible.

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