Cutting Edge and Old Classics

I only just heard of “netbooks” in the past week or so—those laptop computers that are stripped down in power but perfect for checking e-mail and surfing the web when you’re on the go. I’m intrigued and fascinated by the idea; if I’m not on a business trip, all I really need on my computer is a web connection and something with which to write. (Being able to watch DVDs is nice, but with the PSP it’s not quite as necessary as it would’ve been in the past, and I know that adding in a DVD-ROM will spike the price.) Being in the $250-to-$400 range makes them perfect, and awfully tempting.

Well, until I was looking at SlickDeals today and noticed someone selling 4GB flash drives for $8. And that’s when it hit me that five years ago, those little numbers were priced through the roof. And even when it isn’t some sort of crazy deal, they’re still pretty cheap these days. (I think I got my 4GB flash drive for something like $35.) So in a couple of years? Those netbooks might very well be even cheaper. And since I do have a fully functioning laptop anyway… yeah, I can wait. If anything, that makes me all the more excited for when I eventually get one, mind you.

At the other end of the spectrum, my latest “on-the-bus reading” material is something a little more old-fashioned: Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. Considering my major at university was English Literature, you may find it a little shocking that I have never read anything by Jane Austen before. (Or, I might add, any of the Brontë sisters.)

My guess is that each professor assumed that one of the others assigned it to be read, and the end result was an Austen-sized hole in my knowledge; the closest I’ve ever come was seeing the movie adaptation of Bridget Jones’s Diary. Oh, and having Clueless on my Netflix queue for over two years and counting. Anyway, a discussion of the ITV series Lost in Austen brought this to light, and I’d decided it was time that I should fix this gap in my knowledge.

So far? I’m really loving it. I knew I’d hit pay dirt in the second chapter when I hit this little gem:

“…What say you, Mary? For you are a young lady of deep reflection, I know, and read great books and make extracts.”

Mary wished to say something sensible, but knew not how.

“While Mary is adjusting her ideas,” he continued, “let us return to Mr. Bingley.”

I swear, I could almost hear the ker-pow noise at that little zinger directed at Mary. And I am wondering if Mary was based on someone that Austen hated, because wow, the shots keep coming as I chortle merrily away. (“Mary had neither genius nor taste…” “Mary, who having, in consequence of being the only plain one in the family…”) I also picked up a copy of Wuthering Heights so I’ve got all sorts of classics of literature just waiting to be read.

Good times, good times.

2 thoughts on “Cutting Edge and Old Classics

  1. Stuart says:

    Lucky, lucky man – reading ‘Pride and Prejudice’ for the first time!

  2. Tuffy says:

    Greg !!! You picked a winner of a book. I read it in college, couldn’t put it down, and reread every other year or so. Her other books are good but, to me, this one is by far the best. As Stuart says … you lucky, lucky man.

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