Thursday, January 14, 2010

Three Cups of Tea

So, I got this book for Christmas last year and I never got around to reading it until now, when I was searching for a different book entirely. Don't get me wrong, I was always interested in reading it, I looked at the cover and it seemed to be an inspiring story about some dude building a school.

The book is about Greg Mortenson, co-authored by writer/reporter David Oliver Relin. And it is a story about a dude making schools, but it's so much more interesting and timely. Since the book was a present I didn't know much about it until I started reading it. Mortenson is a mountain climber, and for personal reasons he tries to summit a huge mountain peak called K2 located in Pakistan. The book follows Mortenson from 1993 to 2003, and it's a good read. It starts off a little slow, but it's definitely worth it. Mortenson becomes an insider in the remote mountain villages of Pakistan and out of respect for the small village that was so kind to him when he lost his way coming down from the mountain, he promised to build the children a school. This is where the real story begins.

I think everyone in America should read this, I feel like I have a much better understanding of the peoples of this area. It drives homes sentiments that I've read in one sentence news synopsis, that I might not have completely believed to be true or have understood. For instance their hatred of the Taliban and Osama bin Laden, and exactly how ignorance is used to oppress and hatred is used to control the mainly poor inhabitants of this area. But the best thing about this book is that gives a person like me hope, that one person can truly make a difference. I know that may sound trite in our cynical world, but just read it and see what you think. It's not at all preachy, although a little alarm went off in my head when Mortenson's childhood is explained. And the reader finds out his parents were Missionaries. But Mortenson himself is not interested in converting anyone to a certain religion, his goal is provide a balanced education to all the needy children. Children who voluntarily gather in fields of dirt scratching with sticks for their make shift schools (with no teacher present). Mortenson just cares about these kids and his work and his heart have opened the minds and hearts of the people who live in an area where so much volatile and Anti-American sentiment runs rampant.

If you purchase a the book from their website 7 percent of your book purchase will go to helping build girls schools. Highly recommended.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year! and DO NOT go see the gazillion bubble show

I know it's been a long time since I've posted, and again I'm just being a slacker, but the posters for the Gazillion Bubble show are compelling me to write a new post. Last year, I think for Valentine's Day, I heard about the Gazillion Bubble show on Oprah, and thought it would be a fun night out. The tickets were about $75 for this "Off-Broadway" show, and I was sorely disappointed. First of all the dude on Oprah was a no show, instead his wife who was/is still learning to speak English took over. The "real" guy was off to Vegas for more shows. So why they thought that his wife could stand in, I don't know. It was just lame, I LOVE bubbles, but we pretty much paid $75 bucks a person to watch someone do "bubble tricks" that I think I could do with about an hour of practice. Also the secret is that their bubbles have some other chemical in them that makes them stronger than mere soap bubbles, leaving white residue on anything that bubbles touched, which would mean you, and your clothes, and your hair. The highlight of the show was when she selected kids from the audience and she went through the line and asked each kid how old they were and where they were from, various kids answered I'm 8 and I'm from Connecticut, I'm 9 and I'm from Brooklyn, and then one little girl answered, "I'm 7 and I'm from America."

Stay clear of the Gazillion Bubble show, it sucked big time and it was expensive! The whole show was pretty much an effort to sell their Gazillion bubble stuff, so pretty much you pay to get tickets for a live infomercial. Definitely NOT recommended. Oh and Happy New Year!