Reading Vlog – March 13-15 || Always Doing

Hey there, Kazen here, and
welcome back to Always Doing. [♪♪] This weekend I thought I would try something new
and do a quick turnaround weekend reading vlog. I’ve never done this before – my vlogs usually have
music and I’ll go out somewhere, but you know what? Corona virus is definitely a thing. I am stocked up, I’m going to be
staying in all weekend and reading. So I thought I’d share my progress with
you guys. As much as I am able, at least, because there are some Booktube Prize books – there’s
one that I hope to finish, another one that I hope to start. Would be great if I could get close to finishing it
but I’m not gonna jinx anything. And a bunch of other books
that I wanna read and get to. And I ended up making a library trip a couple
of days ago which was kind of amazing. Because of social distancing a lot of
the library services have been curtailed All of the places you can sit to read
have been blocked off. There’s no longer- you can usually stand and read newspapers at
these podium things, that’s all gone. They discourage long conversations
at the reference desk. And while I never felt like I was being kicked out
there wasn’t really any place to sit, and yeah. It was like a get in, get out thing. It was the quietest and the least number
of people I have ever seen at that library. But they had the book I was there for as well as
a bunch of others so let me show you those. The first book, and the whole reason I went to the library,
was Ghosts of the Tsunami by Richard Lloyd Perry. This is a buddy read I’m doing with Olive over at
A Book Olive. We are starting this weekend. And something that made me kind of sad is that
this book- the library got it almost two years ago? Over a year ago, and I’m very obviously
the first person to have read it because the *spine was completely tight and closed
and there’s, no one has ever even cracked it open. And while I was there of course I roamed
the shelves and found some other things. The library loan period is only two weeks. There is a one time renewal that I’m
pretty sure I’ll be able to use for these because they’re not exactly super popular, but this is
still a lot more than it can probably read in a month. But you never know! So. We have a book that translates as The Theory of
Doctor and Patient Communication. I’m a medical interpreter, this makes a lot of sense. Then I picked up a couple of books on study methods
because I love reading about how people study, how they gear up for tests and other things.
I don’t know, I’m weird like that. So I have this book which translates as the, now this is for 東大 which is Tokyo University. It is the most prestigious and elite university
in Japan and their medical division, for their majors that are going to be doctors – you have
to decide that right the being of undergrad in Japan – but this is a study method for people
who did that or are doing that. Haven’t read it yet, not sure. But it’s called- 常識 is “common sense”,
and 非常識 is “NOT common sense”. So the nonsensical,
not common sensical study method. And why is there a cat? I don’t get it. The other study method book is about
a normal housewife who ended up passing the test at the same
Tokyo University at age 50. And this is pretty unheard of. She actually tried to get into Tokyo University
when she just got out of high school. And if you don’t get in on your first try a lot of people
will take off a year or two and try again and again. And she did that, still didn’t make it.
Tried it again when she was 50 and did. So I’m curious how she did it, especially because as
an adult I’m going to guess that her study method is a bit different than the things
I read aimed at young people. And the last book I picked up is
one that I already started. It is Station Design, and it’s mostly wayfinding. And what I think is cool about this is that
there’s lots and lots of pictures. …as she gets to all the text pages. There we go. And there are some stations I know in Tokyo.
Kyoto Station makes an appearance, I think. So I’m just curious, the urban planning part of me is
really curious to see what this book will be like. So those are all the library books I have but of course
that’s not it because there’s no romance. So Holley Trent, Norseton Wolves
Mate Call collection. I’ve already read the first two
and I’m ready to start the third. They’re mostly novellas, I think. First one was pretty good, the second
one I didn’t really care for. Let’s hope the third is a bit better. I also recently got my hands on Steel- oh, there we go. Steel Closets by Anne Balay. You may have heard me gush about Semi Queer,
a book about LGBTQIA+ truck drivers. This is her first book, about steel workers. I’m super interested in this but. But. I am reading for the Booktube Prize
right now and my Booktube Prize read is a bit heavy. So I don’t know if I’m really gonna
wanna read more nonfiction. At least this won’t make me like tear up like
the Booktube Prize read is making me tear up. But this is another option. So that’s my pile of possibilities.
To get started, at least. And so what I’m thinking – it’s about
3 pm on Friday right now. Over the next 48 hours I would
really like to read 1,000 pages. It’s a bit of a stretch but I love
a challenge. So let’s get started. So first things first, I’m kind of sick of looking at this
sashiko thing that has been here for quite a while now. So we can get rid of that and let’s change things up. Much better. Watching booktube and cross stitching. I’ve been doing this in the mornings. When life is going all sideways it’s nice
to have something that I control. And I can put everything on that chart onto this fabric and make it do it I want and that’s satisfying. So it turns out you’re stuck home all day most of what
you do is not only reading but sleeping and eating. So I actually got a nap in, which I needed because
I haven’t been sleeping well at night. I should really put my phone in the
other room but I fall asleep to podcasts. So, nyyyh. But napped, read a bunch that I’ll tell
you once I’m done eating dinner. But now we make dinner. We’re going simple and nutritious today
with nabe, which is hotpot. And you actually buy the broth like this. And there’s all different flavors but people
have really been going after the broth. Like, toilet paper and nabe broth. Go figure. So this isn’t our usual but it’s a chicken based, salt –
never seen salt as a flavor until I came to Japan – broth. So we have this and you just
pop it in there and heat it up. We’re going to start with some carrots and some, what are these in English. Welsh onions? And They’re meatballs in that they’re balls made out of meat, but they’re not seasoned – you can’t even see ’em –
they’re not seasoned the same. I’m gonna throw these in and
there’ll be more vegetables to come. As part of my quarantine supplies I
bought alcohol because, of course. And I don’t drink much. I like sweet stuff,
so this is mango and mikan orange. So cheers! Dinner has been had, some booze has been imbibed, and today wasn’t as a great a reading day
as I, as it could have been. As it could have been ’cause I spent
a bunch of the morning on Twitter because it was Friday night in America and
everyone was freaking out over corona virus. And then I ended up scrolling through
a whole bunch of stuff. But I did do a decent amount of reading. I started and finished the third novella
in the Mate Call collection. It’s called Idler. And what I’m thinking is so interesting, and I’m really
glad that I’m reading these four short novellas back-to-back because Holley Trent
is doing something big here. In subverting some tropes about werewolves she’s
not only trying to take a punch at the patriarchy, but she’s also looking at
dismantling intergenerational trauma, which is such a big thing to tackle. And I’m so impressed. The other series that I’m reading
by her is the Jekh Saga series, and in that she’s con – not conquering
[laugh] – she’s tackling colonialism. So these are the only two series of hers that
I’ve read so I’m curious to read even more by her. She’s covering so much big stuff within
what a lot of people see as a frothy, not- you know, a genre that doesn’t
have too much deep stuff to it. So I’m really impressed that by that. The book itself was better than the second one but the relationship itself was just okay for me.
It’s these bigger themes that I’m really enjoying. I read a few pages of my Booktube Prize
book but it’s heavy and depressing, and after the news I didn’t need that.
And this Station Design book? Super dry. Utterly dry. And I have like 20 pages to go before
we hit any pictures so putting this one down. Not away, not DNF, but just putting it down. Aside. In the plus column are the first 50 pages
of the buddy read Ghosts of the Tsunami. And this was good. This is also depressing as all hell
but the writing is good. And I kind of know the story about what he’s
getting at ’cause it’s kind of well-known here, but I’m glad he’s bringing it to a Western audience. Because he talks about a particular
school that got hit by the tsunami and what the teachers did or didn’t do,
and how that led to some deaths. So yeah, like I said, sad, depressing. But it’s written well and the author has lived in Japan for decades, which is really a big thing, I think. I’ve read a lot of books where an author has been
in Japan for a few months, or a year or two, or has been here for awhile but doesn’t speak
the language, and it makes a huge difference. So I think I’m gonna refill my drink,
there’s not all that much alcohol in it. It’s glorified fruit juice but it still tastes good and sweet. I’m going to read the fourth
novella in that werewolf series. I already started it, if I can finish that off
that would feel like an accomplishment. So I just heard about this today. There is a app
that is opening up because of Covid-19. Let’s admit it, using it as a business opportunity
by letting their app be free until April 1st. And I’m not gonna name it right now because I don’t
now if it’s any good or not, but I’m gonna give it a try. Heaven knows I’m not going to the gym right now. And I’m actually thinking of
suspending my membership for April so I won’t be tempted to go, ’cause I will be tempted to go. But this could be a nice alternative,
at least for the next two weeks. So I have it in Japanese. I hope that the audio will be
in Japanese too, but we’ll see. Knuckles wrapped and ready to go! So I did an hour of the yoga
and it was actually quite good. I don’t know how it’ll stand up over time but there seem
to be a lot of options and a lot of different exercises. I put in 60 minutes of a hatha yoga series and it started off with some warmups, standing poses,
some seated poses, and cooldown. And considering them taking off next month
and I’m gonna guess that the app costs less than a month at my gym, might be a
good idea just for at least that one month. So after yoga I had a shower and
now I have mail, do you believe it? Regular mail isn’t delivered on Sunday but packages are,
and this technically qualified as a package. So here’s a little something that I ordered. And there was a big form here with my
address and stuff on it so I took it off. But in Japan cash on delivery it’s still a thing. And it’s cheap. I think I paid an extra, it’s less than
three dollars for the service. And because it’s cash on delivery the package
was able to be sent out right away. It didn’t have to wait for a payment to clear. So what could I possibly have
gotten that fits in an envelope? Can I do this with one hand? Bwahaha. We’ll leave that, it’s probably the invoice. [happy] Eeee! Well, okay, hold on. Tape. So in Kyoto there is a very famous
maker of needles. Sewing needles. And they have the cutest little shop. They have
literally been doing it for hundreds of years And I needed some so I bought some. And okay, hold on. Can I do this on camera? Oh, I don’t want to rip it, hold on. So I got myself some cross stitch needles. There’s ten in a package. These are the smallest
ones because I work on such small fabric. But this just- and this is the way
needles tend to be sold here. Which way does this open.
Oh, it opens in the front. So with this paper and then you’ll have to trust me that
there’s ten needles inside that foil. And the project I’m working on, I actually
have a needle holder, this thing here. And it’s great because it has all the
symbols for what I’m working on. And this is all held together with magnets. I could turn this upside down and
none of the needles would fall out. But I don’t have enough needles for every color yet. So I got 30 more. And I missed it but in the envelope,
this is their kind of promo thing. Talking about the history of the- so
400 year history of this needle maker. And one of the characteristics of
their needles is this round eye. It’s not on every one – the cross-stitch ones don’t have
’em because it doesn’t really work – but most of their needles have this round eye
that makes it really easy to thread. And here’s all the needle types. Is there another page? I don’t think
that’s all- and there we go. Even more. And yeah. I really- this is the shop. It is absolutely the cutest,
most gorgeous little shop ever. Alright, it’s definitely after 3 pm so I’m
here to do my wrap-up for the weekend. I’m happy with how I did. I didn’t get
anywhere close to thousand pages, which was pretty obvious after the
first 24 hours, but I think I did decent. So I read 64 pages of my Booktube Prize book, which is nowhere near as much as I wanted to
but considering my mood, decent. And then I read completely the novella Idler by
Holley Trent, as well as Scion by Holley Trent. They were about a hundred pages each.
And I ended up liking both of them. And I already said the whole themes
behind the whole collection is interesting. And I read about 50 pages of Ghosts of the Tsunami. Buddy read, sharing my thoughts with Olive on that one. And only a couple of pages of the
station, train station design book. But last night I went on my wish list online and I found that a book, an ebook that I’ve
been looking at was on sale for 99 cents and I picked it up because it fit my mood. Because this more stressed out I am the
more off the wall romance I tend to read. And I got Ice Planet Barbarians by Ruby Dixon. And you wouldn’t tell by the cover or the title,
but the hero is a complete cinnamon roll. He’s the sweetest, nicest guy. And while there- I have some issues with this book
that I’m going to talk about in my full wrap up, I enjoyed the heck out of this one. So there we go, my first quick
turnaround weekend reading vlog. If you liked it please let me know down in the
comments below so I know to do this more often. It’s a new thing for me and it’s definitely
a bit more casual than my usual but it’s been kind of fun to just tape
random stuff throughout the day. If you have any questions or if you want to
talk about any of the books that I’ve read or anything at all let me know that
as well down in the comments below. Thank you for watching, subscribe if you’re new,
and I’ll see you in the next video. Bye! [♪♪]
Thanks for watching! Oh, a quick vlog, she thought.
Just throw clips in the editor, she thought. What she did not think of
were the captions. 😅

8 thoughts on “Reading Vlog – March 13-15 || Always Doing

  1. The cat is wearing a graduation cap 😀 I can't even, I love Japan! Cash on delivery is still a thing here and it's such a convenient service! I love the packing of the needles! I wish I was skilled enough to do something with my hands!

  2. Also, I haven't cross stitched in forever but you're inspiring me to pick it up again right now! 😊

  3. The packaging of those needles was like a Russian nesting doll — big package, plastic package, paper package, more paper packages .

  4. I love the idea of reading study method guides for entertainment.
    I have a couple of unfinished cross-stitch projects that I should probably think about picking up, so thanks for the inspiration! 🙂

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