Bougie Parfumée

i have seasons for things i like - food, music, tv, movies, accoutrements. one second im into all of something and then it slowly fades.

when i was purging my belongings during the Christmas break, i found a box of scented candled. i sniffed them one by one and wondered why i havent burned any of them in a while. all it took was one candle, burning in the background, to light my candle season - all the puns intended.


my favourites are the ones pictured here. Calone 17 from Le Labo, Peony and Blush Suede from Jo Malone, and Mimosa from Diptyque. these scents are so subtle and yet very long lasting, when i cam back from my trip to Mexico, Calone 17 welcomed me home when i opened the door.

hot tip: make sure the pool of melted wax reaches the glass before snuffing the flame. et voilá, no candle tunneling! if its taking too long, wrap the candle in foil.

spectacles

i was always one of the tallest kids in my class. this meant that i was always in the back of the line up and i always sat in the back of the class. 

there was one year when we were doing math drills, where the teacher would flash problems and we would solve them quietly at our desks. except i had a problem; i could not see clearly from where i was sitting. so i would run to the front, read the question, and then run back to my seat to solve it. i would do this for every flashcard. my teacher found this very odd so she talked to my parents about it and suggested that i get my eyes checked. i did and voila, we discovered that i needed glasses. i was in fourth grade. 

my prescription then wasnt so bad. maybe about -0.25 on both eyes. this just means that numbers and letters are a bit blurry on the edges but you can function without glasses for the most part. wearing glasses in the fourth grade was not cool. i was afraid i would look like a dork. so i just squinted my way out of it. 

bad move. by the time i got my eyes checked again, my prescription was went up to about -1.00 on both eyes. i needed to wear glasses now - for real. it was no longer a difference of SD to HD with glasses; the whole world was a blur and i needed to wear glasses to make it make sense.

every year since then, my prescription had gone up. my glasses got thicker and thicker. it affected my self-esteem but there was nothing i could do about it. when i turned fifteen, my mom suggested contact lenses and that helped - a lot. 

i would still work glasses at home and i did my best to give my eyes a rest from contacts. but the best twenty year-old me could do was not enough. i had a few complications with contacts which resulted to strict glasses only. the first time it happen, i was shook but apparently not enough because it happened again. the second time around, i was so afraid i would not be able to see in the future, i really took it seriously. 

in 2016, i had a check-up and my prescription went up again: -5.50 on the left eye, -4.25 on the right. i was not surprised but i was also not happy. even when i did everything right, my eyes just kept getting worse. this was gonna be my life, higher and higher prescription every time i leave the optometrists office. 

new glasses from Bonlook - Varna in gold.
these are very similar to the pair i wore when i was thirteen - metal and totally round.
a couple of weeks ago, i went in for another check-up. the doctor said something that i thought i would never hear: "i think your prescription will be the same based on the machine tests we just ran." say what? 
so then we did all of the physical checks and tests: 

"can you read line five for me"

"follow the light"

"is number one better or number two? number two or number three?"

"cover you left eye and read line six for me please"

and yes, he guessed right, my prescription was exactly the same. this is the very first time this has happened to me in twenty-three years. this has opened a new possibility for me - Lasik. i can now consider this in the future. 
also, simply being able to use the same glasses i currently have. 

i was so amazed and elated, i celebrated. i went out and bought new glasses. go figure. 

side note: i usually cant wear glasses for too long since they give me headaches. ive been wearing these glasses since i picked them up at noon. its past 10PM now and no headache! it was meant to be.

slow mornings

ive always had a morning shift since i started working - either 8AM to 4PM or 9AM to 5PM.

it wasnt until i took on my current role that lead to an evening shift - 12PM to 8PM.

it was definitely a big change with pros and cons. however, the pros mostly outweighed the cons. almost two years later and im pretty much settled in and have found even more benefits to working late. on top of that im also more productive now and weirdly enough, more of a morning person now than ever.

when i worked the morning shifts, i pretty much had to leave running to make it to work by 8 or 9AM. commute was very unpredictable and i hated being late. this meant that i rarely had time to eat breakfast or just have any morning rituals in general. i tried waking up earlier but it just didnt stick. i think my ultimate maximum for wake up time is 6AM - any earlier than that, its not a great time. and because i wake up so early, by the time im done work, i mostly feel like doing nothing.

working the late shift has allowed me to learn how to wake up naturally and still have plenty of time to make and eat breakfast, exercise (if i wanted to), read, make coffee, blah blah. i legit even have time to grind coffee beans these days. 

it didnt start out like that though. ive always been a late(ish) sleeper. the earliest i sleep is probably 11.30PM - this is probably why waking up early was such a pain. with a late shift, i could sleep late and wake up late and still have more sleep than i have ever had. of course, i abused this in the beginning and just started sleeping later and waking up later. that didnt work - i felt as rushed as when i had to be at work for 8AM. thats just ridiculously unnecessary. i also felt very unproductive and sluggish. so i started sleeping earlier and naturally, my body adapted. now, im almost always asleep by 12.30AM (max, 1.30AM) during weekdays and i naturally wake up around 7.30AM. i just allow myself to roll around in bed until 8AM (max, 8.30AM). this has also affected my ability to sleep in but maybe thats also just me getting older. 

my mornings are the slowest part of my day. i allow myself 30 minutes for each activity i would like to accomplish - including the time i allow myself to lazily roll around in bed. i dont know when or why i started doing this but it kind of reminds me of Hugh Grants character in About a Boy.


i mentioned this in a previous post, im great at being productive at work but my personal time was more or less unstructured. lately, i am noticing that i am getting better and better at getting through the "must do" stuff. therefore, giving me more time to spend on my "id like to do" stuff. i feel that i am more mindful of the time i spend doing certain things which allows me to pivot faster and having less of the "oh my gosh, its [blahblah time] already?! what have i done today?" moments.

this sense of accomplishment at the beginning of the day has done wonders for me. i now see mornings as more than a "getting ready" time of day. i can get stuff done in the morning which allows me to just relax in the evening, guilt-free, if i wanted to. sometimes i am also in such high spirits the entire day that i can keep going and just do more stuff in the evening as well like go out and hang out with people. as an introvert, this is very taxing more often than not, so even i surprise myself sometimes. 

one thing that i did have to avoid was to start working as soon as i woke up. i used to bring my laptop home everyday and just got things fired up right away - emails, Slack, everything. i wanted to get caught up right away so that when i get in, im ready to go. this just didnt end up being good for me and my health, mental and physical. instead, i compromised. i tried to get in 30 minutes earlier and this is when i do all the catching up - again with that 30-minute unit of time. 

all in all, i now see mornings in a new light (haha, get it?) and i enjoy them so much more. 

four months into my new role and shift, i started experimenting with breakfast. 
i remember vividly that this was when i started to appreciate the gift of time in the morning.
and avocados.

internet

last week, a friend of mine was going through the archives of the internet. literally.

we had a great time looking through old things. internet presence in the early 2000s was just G R E A T - early days of social networking and social media.

here's a list of my movement through these sites (in order of account creation)

  • MySpace - probably around 2002
    • i moved from one side of the world to another when i was 16. i made an account in MySpace to stay connected with my friends back home. 
  • AsianAvenue - definitely 2003
    • no need to think about why i had one - e v e r y o n e had an account in high school! everyone who wanted to have a fire layout needed to understand a tiny bit of html or at least learn how to steal someones code. of course, we also learned how to stop someone from right-clicking our pages. 
a portion of it says:
"im at it again. spiral notebooks and 0.5 pilot gelpens. volume III. here we go."

i guess my precious layout did not survive the end of AA.

  • LiveJournal - 2004 & back again for a little bit in 2012 & 2013
    • it seemed like a few people had moved on from AsianAvenue (or AA as we called it) and people were linking their LJ accounts to their AA. i started to like livejournal because i was done with the html and i really just wanted to write about anything and everything. i feel i like this was when i really started opening up to the internet. maybe it helped that i was able to lock my account and make it private. 
this is a trick to make a post "stick" to the top - you would enter a date in the future.
i remember thinking, "oh yeah, 2020 seems far enough"
its legit two years away from now.

  • Blogger - 2008
    • i left LJ to go public again. im not 100% sure why i chose blogger but here we are in 2018, and im still here. ten years. wow. i didnt even realize until i started writing this. how fitting.
  • Tumblr - 2009
    • tumblr came into the scene in 2007 and 2 years later i was on that bandwagon too. that reblog feature was just straight fire. i left briefly to go back to blogger, but then the instagram integration with tumblr was shipped and i was right back into it.
i jumped between livejournal, blogspot, and tumblr for a few years. i think went to the platform that served my purpose best. honestly, i still have access to all three. 

aside from these, i was an early adopter of twitter, facebook, gmail, and instagram. i remember when facebook only allowed sign-ups with official university/college email addresses. AND, remember when gmail required an invite for you to create an account?

wow. im just dating myself now.
if you would like to take a trip down internet memory lane, i invite you to find your old accounts using the Wayback Machine.

i will end this post with my first instagram post dated november 04, 2010 (instagram was released october 2010).

A post shared by kae natividad (@0kae) on

journey

ever since i started posting anything online, there is always some post or other about my hair.

i like growing my hair, i like cutting my hair, i like dyeing my hair. but its never too extreme. mainly because, truthfully, im lazy.

the reason why i chop my hair short: cause i dont want to deal with washing a lot of hair
the reason why i grow my hair long: i probably didnt want to bother booking any hair appointments
the reason why i love the ombre and balayage trend: i dont need to worry about roots

my standard was always long-ish hair. until march of 2011 when i decided to donate 10 inches and i went from long to bob. i think that gave me too much courage and i went for another haircut the next month. and i HATED it. so much so that i just let it grow for years.

2013, ombre was was everywhere and i finally started dyeing my hair again. still no major hair chop though.

it was only the fall of 2014 when i made the big jump again.

that LOB life
since then i kept the short-ish hair - going between lobs and bobs.

and in 2015, the lobs got longer as a chops in between got farther apart (read: lazy)

2015: by this point i had grown out most of my ombre and these were the final pieces

2015: decided to chop all the colour off and went even shorter
 2016: ran with my natural colour for a while


2016: then cut + balayage
2016: then i let it grow out again

2017: cut and refresh of balayage
2017: and surprise, it grew out again

2017: cut off all the splits and refreshed the balayage
2017: grew it out but got bangs



























2018: longest i have ever had my hair
oh and it was slightly purple/lavender at this point

the lastest change was last wednesday. it was just getting too long and too dry and too dull and too warm.

the usual, trim + refresh
im trying to be better with and nicer to my hair. i used to truly be long/short hair, dont care. im slightly at the long hair, kinda hair phase right now. 

¡hola!


my parents usually go away in february.
they were quite eager to plan a trip especially since winter has been so cold.

im legit cold just looking at this photo

except this year, they decided to make it a family event.

¡ hola !



from



Mexico










dimsum club

i have a handful of friends who i enjoy eating with. we like talking about food, we like exploring food, we like eating food, we like talking about food while we eat. 

to organize our adventures, we started a slack channel called dimsum-club. why dimsum? was it because we first made the channel in search of good dimsum in the city? was it because we craved dimsum regularly? i dont know actually. 

but one thing i know is we dont limit ourselves to dimsum or even the city. if there is good food, we go. 

the first dimsum club outing of 2018 was to assembly chef's hall.

drinks, music, and lots of food to choose from.
we got there a little late and we got so into talking that some of the spots closed before we could get to them. but thats ok - that just means we gotta go again. 

i wasnt craving anything specific but this one familiar spot was calling my name: love chix


their main location is actually a short walk away from the office. went aaaaaall the way downtown to get food from a place down the street. well, no ragrets. cause ive never been but now i know that i can get DELICIOUS brussel sprouts down the street. and oh yeah, the chicken was great as well. 

but those brussel sprouts though. a friend and i finished our portions and we went back to get just a large order of them sprouts! (actually it was extra large cause they dumped another handful before giving it to us).

after enjoying our food, we had a few drinks and then called it a night. 

its saturday now. 
still thinking about dem sprouts.


new toy

i was in mexico last year for a wedding. the group i was with went on a mini trip to tulum. when we got there, every one pulled out their devices to document the trip. one friend whipped out his dji osmo and the oohs and ahhs ensued.

i was so impressed at the quality of the videos and how quickly he was able to edit them. i thought about it all month. and then a month turned into two, and then it was christmas. what im trying to say is, i bought myself a new toy for christmas. 

ive made a couple of videos since i got it in the mail. i must say, its super easy to make instagram ready videos with this thing. 

we had a visitor last month and they wanted to visit niagara falls. they've never been and apparently the falls was partially frozen. so away we went. 


it was super cold. so cold that my phone drained from 79% to 8% within 15 minutes of being exposed. BUT, since i had the osmo, i could take videos with gloves on and the shivering was not captured in the video.

digitally analog

last month, i was doing some online shopping. i thought, "boxing day would be the best time to buy Christmas cards." and as i was going through the usual categories in Indigo (you know my love for stationary), i stumbled upon this video


and that was it. i was HOOKED. i love journaling in the traditional pen and paper way. in fact, the drafts for this blog are on pen & paper.



but then i realized i needed to be more realistic about this.
1. im too lazy to hand write something like this all the time
2. i would very likely forget to bring the journal with me everywhere

so i started looking for tips and tricks to make this more sustainable for me. read: make something made to be analog, digital. digitally analog. 

i found this article which was perfect for me since i already use Evernote

i was always organized and productive at work. but free time is a bit of a free for all. which, doesnt work cause i end up being side-tracked ALL DAY. aka. not productive.

i started right away and bullet journaled the rest of my free time in december and let me tell you, this is the most productive i have been during the Christmas break.

1 month into it, so far, GREAT!




the list

as promised from last week,

here are the books i read in 2017 - in order of completion:


The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing

- began: 01/13
- completed: 01/14
- i didnt exactly breeze through this book in a day. i had started another book and in my quest for the next one, i stumbled upon this in audiobook format. i heard many people talk about this and how it has helped them declutter. truthfully, i learned a lot of things but there are a lot more in this book that i could have done without. having said that, i recently had an enormous urge to tidy up and declutter and i found myself thinking of some of the methods Marie Kondo had suggested. im very proud of the amount of junk i got rid of (threw out two recycling bags, donated/gave away about four bags of clothes, donated six large paper bags worth of books and things) however, doing it all in one go was one of the suggestions i could not adhere to.

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life

- began: 01/01
- completed: 01/23
- this was one of those books that are just everywhere. when i visited a bookstore early last year, i saw it right up front - the commanding orange sucked me right in. didnt buy it then though. a few days later, i was randomly clicking through instagram and saw this on someones feed - the familiar orange yet again. it was enough for me to pick it up when i saw it again in the bookstore. i found myself nodding 'yes' to many things that was said in this book. definitely not news, many books have attempted to write about a similar topic. however, it is a very welcome reminder. i passed my copy on to someone else hoping that it would be a helpful reminder for them as well.

How to Win Friends and Influence People

- began: 02/04
- completed: 02/24
- when some people heard that i started this list, more than one person recommended this book - "one of those books that you just have to read." i also learned that there is also an updated version, an adaptation of the same principles for the digital age - How to Win Friends and Influence People in the Digital Age. Very curious how different the two books might be. Apparently not curious enough to read it in 2017 though.



Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High

- began: 02/28
- completed: 08/23
- first thought: wow that took a while for me to finish! this is a book that was selected for the leadership book club at work. we got really swamped at the beginning of the year that we kept pushing it back. i didnt have it in me to read it ahead of the team as well. however, the book club really helped me digest a lot of the topics in this book. i learned a lot about myself as i read and as we discussed this book. it also helped those in the book club have a common language to speak when we need to lean on someone for advice on a crucial conversation to be had.

Pachinko

- began: 04/08
- completed: 10/08
- remember when i said i judge books by their covers? yeah, this was one of those books. thick, hardcover, pastel colours - in a word, beautiful. i read the jacket and did not let it go. it was quite the challenge just by the sheer size and weight of the book. not gonna lie, it fell on me a few times as i nodded off to sleep. reading in bed is a hazard sometimes. in addition to that, i started this book in my season of dying drive - i read about a third of it, put it down as i let other things get in the way, and hardly picked it up until my end of year blitz. i dont know if i was unconsciously delaying the inevitable. you see, i really love this book. the characters really stuck with me. their stories resonated so loud. maybe i just didnt want it to end. when it did, i could not stop talking about it. this is another book that i have lent to someone else. hoping that it would touch another persons life just like it did mine.

Fifteen Dogs

- began: 02/24
- completed: 10/09
- yikes! i took even longer with this one. i swear its not because this is a terrible book. it was just one of those that i started, read a bit of, put down, and didnt pick up again because i start other books. this book is similar to other books on this list in that it had been mentioned or it came up in conversation multiple times. i remember i was interviewing someone who used to work at a bookstore and we asked for them to recommend a few books to us: this was one of them. the synopsis piqued my interest (maybe because it is set in a very familiar location. ahem toronto). another time it popped up was when i was in a meeting and one of the attendees commented on another attendees dog and how it reminded her of one of the characters in this book. that was two mentions in two weeks. i picked up the book shortly after. a very curious topic/genre. definitely something outside of the usual stuff i would pick up.

Ready Player One

- began: 10/10
- completed: 10/18
- from the book that took the longest to complete, to the book that took the shortest amount of time to complete. i was really hyped about this book. i heard about it in a podcast and the description really got me. i was about to go get the book but my brother told me that he actually owns the book - score! when i brought it to work to show my coworker, she was super pumped for me. (aside: we got super excited when the extended trailer was shown when our work took us to an early screening of star wars. cant wait for this movie!) this book is both the past and the future - hopefully not our future. this was definitely one of those books that i had to tell myself to stop reading so i could get some sleep. 10/10 would recommend.

The Circle

- began: 10/23
- completed: 11/16
- i remember being so jazzed about finishing the previous book in such a short period of time that i was so determined to do the same with this book. alas, i had a vacation during this time and though i brought it with me (electronically), the call of the water was louder than the book. sorry, Dave Eggers. this is another recommendation - in fact by the woman who inspired me to keep pushing with this goal (the same woman i mentioned above). she had read this book prior to us working together and some of her first day experiences reminded her of the beginnings of this book. i like this book but i dont like it at the same time. it caused me a lot of anxiety because it was just too close to real life. still, i could not put it down. i needed to know more, no matter how eerie it was. one thing: do not watch the movie. my coworker warned me, i did not heed her warning, and i regretted it. deeply.

Rich People Problems

- began: 11/16
- completed: 11/26
- i was on a roll and i wanted to start a book as soon as i finished one. since i have read the other two books, this landed on my recommend list. those two combined made it an easy decision. i wanted to know what happens next to the ridiculously rich families in Kevin Kwan's books. this is definitely an easy read. should he decide to write another instalment, i will most likely read it too. he is really good at pushing my "this is so ridiculous but i cant stop reading" buttons. not only that, i read the books years apart but the characters are so colourful its like picking up exactly where you left off - every time. i hear the first book will be a movie soon and that they made pretty solid casting decisions (in that they actually picked Asians to play Asians. #wow #finally).

The Best We Could Do: An Illustrated Memoir

- began: 11/26
- completed: 11/26
- yes thats right, i finished this book in one day. i was really craving the "Pachinko" storyline and i was looking for something same same but different. an illustrated memoir of a Vietnamese immigrant family fit the bill exactly. this was old and new at the same time. the story was familiar. i found myself saying 'same tho' for a number of the things she described. but the impact of the illustration was unexpected (but welcomed). im the curious type who Googles until the end of the internet when something interests me. i still know very little about Vietnam but this book has whetted my desire to know more.

Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness

- began: 11/26
- completed: 12/04
- i was on fire and i was not about to stop. i visited my cousin this day and with two books completed that day, i wanted to keep going. i wanted to read another book which she said she owned but we couldnt find it. she recommended this instead. she started reading this because one of her students suffered from the same disease and she wanted to understand it better. while i was reading this book, sometimes i had to remind myself that this is non-fiction - Susannah was recounting what had happened to her. it scared me and and it fascinated me at the same time. a very unexpected read for me. i didnt search for this book but it was almost like it found its way to me. i dont know if i will be watching the movie. i dont want another "The Circle" scenario in my hands.

Purple Cow

- began: 12/05
- completed: 11/29
- last but not least, the final book - just barely squeaking through. i bought this book at the beginning of the year. lent it to my brother who is self-employed, hoping that it would spark something within him in his new venture. got it back and decided that i will wrap up the year with one of the first books i bought in 2017. this was written in 2003 and it is fascinating to see how business has shifted since then. the edition that i have has a bonus section where readers submitted their experiences with companies who they feel have or are Purple Cows. there was a little bit of a surprise for me there as there is a little blurb about the company that i work for now, FreshBooks. our customer wrote about something that had happened 10 years ago - and yes, he is still a customer today. this book was recommended to me by my dad. he usually sends me articles that mention FreshBooks so i asked him if this was the reason why he recommended this to me. nope. just a massive coincidence. what a crazy way to go full circle with this adventure.

when i was preparing to write this, writing down the timelines, it really hit me how quickly i blazed through some of these books. it also surprised me how i was able to really stick to my decision to complete this goal.

october was definitely the clean up month. all the books i had started i made sure i finished. november 26th was the blitz day. something mustve come over me that day and i really just wanted to blaze through more.

its mid-January now and i have my 2018 goals and books lined up. with my 2017 accomplishment under my belt, i can see myself really getting better at reading regularly again. im quite excited. i look forward to all the things that i will learn about myself, the world and the people around me - through the books they recommend and the conversations we will have about them and book clubs at work.

here's to another 12 books in 2018!
maybe more.

just one a month

last week, i wrote about something i accomplished in 2017. i was going through the photos, as i sometimes do, and landed on a particular memory trigger

aside: i like that term - memory trigger. i certainly did not invent it but i like calling my 365 photos that term. these days, more than ever, i feel the word "trigger" is mostly attached to negative statements. i definitely see how "memory trigger" could be unpleasant. however, because i am so pleased with the outcome of my imperfect Project365, i just cant read any negativity into that term when i use it in that capacity. 

whoa, super long aside. anyway, back to the memory trigger:


i told myself that day that i would commit to reading 12 books in 2017 - one book a month. i did the math and it shouldnt take me an entire month to read even a 500-page book. it seemed very doable. just like with Project365, it started great. in fact, i finished two books in January. until i let it go. one missed day turned into one missed week, and then to one missed month.

then, i looked up and it was already the end of September and i had only finished four books. i started reading a few others but did not finish them. not that they were bad - i finished almost all of them later. i just lost the drive to keep going. i was very ready to give up and just try again in the new year.

but there is this woman at work - i always see her with a book and she always visits the library next door. i remember asking her when she finds the time to read and if she sleeps. it was simple, she found books that she liked and found time to read them - on the weekends, in transit, before bed. and if she didnt like the book - bye! i have started saying the same thing to myself: life is too short to read a book you dont like. i was inspired and determined to catch up. this meant i had to read eight books in three months. happy to report that on December 29th 2017, i finished my 12th book!

another aside: i had planned to list all of the books here with details of when i began and completed them and some thoughts i had. i started it and realized how loooooong this one entry would be. so i decided to make a part two of this topic - just for the list. 

2018 goals
somehow i felt like i didnt do it right. i guess this is my personality type talking again. i was rushed in the end and there was no structure. it was like the wild west - just read something, ANYTHING! so this year i have laid out some rules for myself:
  1. read books. no audiobooks, no illustrated books. i would like to actually go through the motions of traditional reading. doesnt mean i wont pick up an audiobook or illustrated books - they can count as bonus books.
  2. somewhat focused topics. one each quarter of the year
    • leadership
    • non-fiction
    • fiction
  3. one year bible. the last service of the year has compelled me to give this another try. i have tried it before and failed miserably. i have better tools and a better understanding of myself so im hoping this time, i will be able complete it. 
so far...
before the break i signed up for a book club for managers. we will be reading Radical Candor by Kim Scott - scheduled to meet 4 times in January. leadership book for Q1: check! 

during the break i was perusing the usual sites for boxing day discounts and deals. i noticed that Google Play had a $5 voucher for Google Book. used that sucker almost immediately on The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane by Lisa See. im not gonna lie, when im browsing i usually judge books by their covers and/or titles. this one really caught my eye when it popped up in my recommended books somewhere because of my growing appreciation for tea since my trip to Cameron Highlands. i have gone off topic - again. anyway, i think im going to enjoy this book since i have read and enjoyed Shanghai Girls. also because the goodreads reviews on it are pretty good. cant wait to sip all the tea while i read this. currently drinking: ginger peach tea!

Bonus:
press play to view the magic of Cameron Highlands



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im going to be totally honest. i judge books by their covers.  literally and figuratively.  whenever im in a bookstore or library and i do...

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