I Got 99 Bookish Problems and My Dog is One of Them

  1. I like to read out loud but when someone comes into the room I read quietly because I don’t want to be annoying
  2. I get annoyed when people talk to me when I’m readingreading-in-bed-gif
  3. People look at me weird when I get emotional over a book
  4. People look at me weird if I squeal, gasp, grunt, etc. while reading
  5. Or when I laugh out loudImage result for laughing while reading gif
  6. Making excuses to buy books
  7. Letting your wallet suffer because you bought books
  8. Waiting for your favorite author to publish another book
  9. Waiting for the next book in a series
  10. Not having a big enough purse to put your book or books in
  11. Not being able to choose just one book when you travelImage result for reading gif
  12. Going into every bookshop you find on your travel or airport
  13. Wanting to buy all the books
  14. Having a TBR list that will never end
  15. Having a TBR list that never stops growing
  16. Reading slumps
  17. School somehow stops me from reading books I want to read
  18. Having / wanting to read a book before the movie
  19. Feeling sort of guilty over not reading the book before the movie
  20. Having to deal with people who only watch the movies
  21. Having to deal with people who don’t bother reading because there is a movie / show about it
  22. Never leaving the house without a bookImage result for rory's study spot gif
  23. Finding the perfect reading spot
  24. Finding the perfect reading positionImage result for sheldon's spot gif
  25. Having your perfect reading spot invaded by someone else
  26. Only having the night to read but then fall asleep
  27. Not being able to choose how to reorganize my bookshelf
  28. Asking books for special occasions or gift cards to B&N
  29. Buying books for their beautiful books
  30. Buying books and not reading them
  31. Staying up late to read books
  32. Risking precious sleeping time to finish a bookImage result for rory's study spot gif
  33. Avoiding spoilers
  34. Avoiding spoilers and then failing
  35. Not reading fast enough
  36. Rushing through the book because it’s so good you want to see the end
  37. Not wanting to finish a book because it’s so good
  38. Not having matching book series
  39. Picking up books at the library when you already have books at home
  40. Having to read the library books first because they have due dates
  41. Having to let go of the library booksImage result for letting go gif
  42. Being excited for school to end to read more books in summer vacation
  43. Being the only person excited for summer vacation for that reason
  44. Being the only person that reads
  45. Not being able to express all the feelings and thoughts about a book in one review
  46. People who say reading is boring
  47. People who say they don’t readImage result for people who don't read gif
  48. No self-control over “rationing” my reading
  49. Being horrible at buddy reading because most likely I won’t be able to just read a couple of chapters
  50. Having a reading journal because I don’t trust Goodreads
  51. When Goodreads doesn’t let you add a book you re-read to your yearly goal
  52. Forgetting to eat when you’re reading
  53. Forgetting to breathe when an intense scene is happening
  54. An unsatisfying ending
  55. An unsatisfying bookImage result for reading too much gif
  56. Being the only one to dislike a hyped up book
  57. Forgetting all your biological needs to read
  58. Not being able to read in the shower
  59. Not being able to read while driving (except for audiobooks)
  60. Not having audiobooks for car rides
  61. People preferring to listen to music on long car rides than an audiobook
  62. The nonexistence of waterproof books
  63. Not having your dream library yet
  64. Not being able to read inside the pool
  65. Surprising people with my reading skills
  66. Surprising people with my reading speedImage result for reading problem gif
  67. Not taking good enough pictures for bookstagram
  68. Not knowing how to take good pictures but doing it anyway
  69. Hiding your books from your puppy
  70. When your puppy eats your books!
  71. Having a leak on the roof dangerously close to your bookshelf
  72. Not having enough bookshelf space
  73. Having to buy another bookshelf
  74. Squeezing your books on your bookshelf
  75. Feeling emotionally attached to your books
  76. Lending books to your friends
  77. Lending books and never getting them back
  78. Lending books and getting them back damagedImage result for evil person gif
  79. When a friend loses the beautiful dust jacket
  80. Considering buying the book for the pretty dust jacket
  81. People who bend the pages
  82. People who dog ear their pages
  83. Having to explain I don’t dog ear my books but I do write on them
  84. I also highlight, but it’s mostly for school
  85. Buying sticky notes to mark your favorite parts of your favorite book
  86. Risk looking crazy and incoherent when your describe your favorite bookImage result for reading problem gif
  87. Trying to convince someone to read and failing
  88. Buying books online and risking receiving a damaged books
  89. Books are expensive
  90. When someone recommends you a book and adding it to your TBR list
  91. When B&N is far away
  92. When there are no bookstores close to home
  93. Seeing a kid break a book
  94. When little kids don’t see the joy in reading
  95. Worrying that my future kids won’t like reading
  96. Wanting to relive reading your favorite book for the first timeImage result for reading gif
  97. Wanting everyone to read your favorite book
  98. Wanting everyone to enjoy your favorite book
  99. Losing a book

Those are just some of my bookish problems. I’m sure there are more. Let me know what are your bookish / reading problems? Let me know in the comments below.

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How & Where I Get My Books

As a book lover I need books to survive but sometimes obtaining books can be difficult especially when it’s a financial strain. So here I compiled a list of ways to get books from easy and free, to not so easy or free, to definitely not free and hard.

EASY AND FREE

Library

I love the library and go there often for books of the graphic novels variety and movies. I made a whole post about 6 Reasons to Go to the Library why you should at least have a library card. This is the easiest way to get books for free unless you turn it in late, and besides your taxes are already paying for it… so maybe it’s not that free.

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Bookworm Friends

I don’t do this as much anymore but when I was younger a large portion of the books I read came from friends. It’s just as free as the library and its without any late fees.

Blogging for Books

This is a website for book bloggers that sends you free books. All you have to do is sign up, pick a book, write a review, post it on your blog and on their site, and repeat. The only catch is that you must have a blog and you can’t pick more than one book at a time. For more information, go to their website Blogging for Books.

Birthdays

For this method patience is key because your birthday only comes once a year. However, it’s a good way to get books for free from family members. Using this method, I was able to get half of the Twilight Saga (way back in middle school) and my favorite book from 2016, All the Ugly and Wonderful Things by Bryn Greenwood.

 

NOT SO FREE BUT NOT SO EXPENSIVE

Goodwill and Thrift Stores

Most Goodwill stores will have a book section and they don’t have the best selection or in the best condition, but you would be surprised what you can find there. The best part is that the books cost $1 at most. One time I went and bought ten books for $10, and they weren’t in horrible conditions. Sometimes I go just to try my luck.

Thriftbooks

I usually use this website when I’m getting the itch to buy books but I don’t want to pay a ridiculous amount. They have a wider selection to choose from and the books price range from $3 to $20, but they offer a lot of discounts and customer rewards. If you buy $10 worth of books shipping and handling is automatically free, and you’d be amazed how many books you can get for $10 on this website (but it’s not as many as Goodwill). The biggest downside is that the books don’t always come in great condition because it is an online thrift book shop, but if you want you can pay more to get them in better condition as long as they have it. Go to Thriftbooks.com for more information.

 

DEFINITELY NOT FREE AND EXPENSIVE

Amazon

I use Amazon a lot for my book buying because it is so convenient. I just buy it online and it gets sent to my house two days later (thanks to my Prime Membership) and I don’t have to drive anywhere. Unfortunately, it can be expensive if you’re buying directly from Amazon. You can try your luck with their marketplace but the books aren’t always in a great condition and sometimes they turn out to be more expensive than buying from Amazon directly.

Barnes & Noble

This is the most inconvenient option for me because all the bookstores in my town have closed over the years.

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And now the closest bookstore is not only in another city, but it’s in another county! So, I don’t go as often as I would if it was within range. Besides, books are more expensive at the store, and gas is expensive too, so a trip to B&N is quite costly for me.

 

CREATIVE BUT DIFFICULT AND VERY EXPENSIVE

Major in English

If you’re like me and hate to waste money and need an excuse to spend money on anything, including books among other necessities, then majoring in English can help with your book buying. As an English student you will be expected to buy books for school and that will be the only excuse you will need to buy them. However, it has major drawback like every issue and problem that comes with going to school. But, at least you will have books to read.

Holiday Excuses for Books

You have to use creativity to get books for every holiday you celebrate. While it’s easy to ask for gifts for Birthdays, Christmas, and/or Chanukah, the other holidays are tricky. I’m not saying the following excuses will work on most people, but it doesn’t hurt to try.

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Halloween: Instead of candy ask for books

Valentine’s Day: Chocolate is not good for brain but books are. This however can be disputed, try asking for both.

Independence Day: As an independent person, we should all choose to read whichever book we want therefore to the bookstore! Also, the founding fathers read a lot.

Easter: Instead of hunting eggs laid by the Easter bunny, send him a letter asking for books instead. I’m sure it will be a lot easier for him to buy books for you than laying eggs because he is male and a bunny and neither can lay eggs (as far as I know).

Thanksgiving Day: Because I am so thankful for reading, I should receive books to continue my reading habits.

Okay, so the last two methods are not meant to be taken serious, but everything else is a viable option for us bibliophiles.

Wanderlusting for Books

With Summer around the corner many people will start going on vacation and traveling the world, its made me think of some of the book that give me Wanderlust. And don’t forget to comment your favorite traveling book.

The Cat King of Havana by Tom Crosshill

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Cuba might not be a prime vacation pick, yet, but I love the way Crosshill described Cuba in this YA novel. His depiction of my island is right on point describing the people, the culture, and the difficulties the country faces today. It also happened to be an entertaining and funny read. FULL REVIEW.

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

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I was once fooled by the title and and original cover of this book, but it soon became one of my favorite books. It features the perfect balance of Paris and romance. I’ve never been to Paris but this only fueled my wishes to someday travel and see everything Anna saw, which includes: Notre Dame, Arc de Triomphe, and all the movie theaters.

Books by John Green

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With the exception of Looking for Alaska, every time I read a book by John Green, it makes me want to grab a group of friends and go somewhere. The destination doesn’t even matter. He reminds me of how fun traveling can be with friends. Thanks to him I want to go a cross country roadtrip with friends.

Before We Were Strangers by Renee Carlino

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This book takes place in New York City, USA and although I’ve lived in the USA for the majority of my life, I’ve never been to the Big Apple. Before We Were Strangers is the way I’d like to imagine living in New York is like… full of things to do everyday. It’s adding fuel to my wanderlust wishes to go to New York someday… because you know… Hamilton. FULL REVIEW.

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Mental Health in Books and TV

May is mental health awareness month. It’s a topic I think is important and should be talked about more without the negative stigma associated with it.

I for one, have struggled with anxiety in the past. However, I received help from professionals, and a great support system from family and friends (and my dog). At first, I didn’t recognize the signs or that I had a problem until I realized I wasn’t living the life I wanted. I had stopped eating normally, falling asleep was difficult, my thoughts were constantly racing and swirling in my head at all hours the day (and night), and I stopped going outside. At that moment, I knew I had to say something, ask for help.

It wasn’t easy, or fun, or quick to fix. There were a lot of aches, tears, and difficulties to get to the comfortable place I am today, but it all started with asking for help. My only regret is that I didn’t do it sooner. I also want to say that recovering from that crippling anxiety is nonstop, and it’s something I’m still coping with. As corny and cliche as it sounds, if you get help it will get better. It has to.

Since my personal experience with mental health, I worry a lot of how the issue is being depicted. I worry because there are so many misconceptions about the subject, that it’s hard to find stories that get it right.

Anyway, here are some of my favorite books and shows that get it right.

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

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In this book we follow Cath, a brand new college student coping with all the changes that it comes with attending university for the first time. And she’s completely alone since her twin sister decided to hang out with a new crowd that doesn’t involve Cath. At first I just thought Cath was super relatable in how she sees the world and copes with it, until someone pointed out that it’s also about anxiety. The issues presented in this book are not the focus of the story in the same way others are on this list, but they are present. Alcoholism and depression also make an appearance.

The Problem With Forever by Jennifer L. Armentrout

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Mallory suffers from selective mutism (an anxiety disorder) after years of abuse in the foster care system, but with her adoption and years of hard work, she’s finally gotten her voice back and decides to to go to public school for the first time in years.

What I adored about Mallory is that she really shows how recovery works concerning anxiety disorders. For people that have never had anxiety disorders (or any disorder) it might be weird to see someone get so ecstatic over simple things like talking to a stranger, but the excitement Mallory shows over these things is genuine. She also knows it’s okay to have bad days and stay in bed all day as long as you get back up the next day and move forward. FULL REVIEW.

Girl in Pieces by Kathleen Glasgow

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Charlie has had a short but painful and difficult life, which she copes with by cutting herself. It’s not until she goes into treatment she begins to get the right help, however she is soon left to her own devices when she’s forced to walk out of the rehab center. Now she’s on her own and desperately trying get better on her own.

This book showcases a lot of mental health issues apart from self mutilation and it’s a dark read, but it’s incredibly touching to see Charlie’s journey of recovery. She demonstrates the hardships that comes with the territory and the many infuriating bumps along the way. But in the end, all I could do was root for her to make the right decisions instead of the wrong ones (and there were a couple). It also has one of the most bittersweet endings I’ve ever read which  made me bawl like a baby. FULL REVIEW.

Legend of Korra, Book 4: Balance

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SPOILERS BELOW! IF YOU DON’T WANT TO BE SPOILED, DON’T READ THIS SECTION. JUST KNOW, THIS SHOW BELONGS ON THIS LIST. 

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Avatar Korra is a headstrong young woman whose job is to maintain balance in the world. Throughout the series she is very confident in her abilities and immensely strong too, but in book 3’s finale she suffers a setback when she’s almost killed in battle. In book 4, we see her deal with the aftermath of that fight, which has left her in deprssed and in a wheelchair. Her problems may start out to be purely physical, but she soon realizes that it’s also her mental state that’s in trouble. For the rest of the season she continues to cope with her loss and receive help from various people.

What really surprises me about this show is that it deviates from the normal animated shows. It’s simply not normal to see an animated show on nickelodeon take on a story about mental health and trauma. What’s even more surprising is that they did take their time with the character’s healing process. They don’t rush it and that’s very important to show, because mental health issues are not that easy to fix, they do take time. I also appreciated that it was a strong character who went through with this, because it shows that it can happen to anyone. It reminds us that mental illness does not discriminate. FULL REVIEW.

What is Fatmagul’s Fault? (Turkish Drama)

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This Turkish TV drama revolves around a young woman, Fatmagul, who was brutally raped by three men and the repercussions after the rape. The reason I put this on the list is because it’s one of the very few rape story lines that didn’t bother me on television. They attend to the issue and although Fatmagul’s healing process is painfully slow (for some viewers), it’s also done right because she receives help. Most of the time, when rape is portrayed on TV it’s glossed over so the story goes on to the next exciting thing, but in this drama they do a great job of addressing the issues that come with it, from confronting it head on, to the social stigma, and how it affects future relationships. It’s not just Fatmagul who has to deal with what happened, but everyone else who was directly or indirectly involved in it and those who tried to hide it.

It’s Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini

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When Craig almost commits suicide, he hospitalizes himself to receive help and treatment for his depression. Vizzini, who has struggled with depression himself, shows all the different ways depression manifests itself through eating disorders, sleeping disorders, and substance abuse. It’s honest, relatable, and a realistic portrayal of a serious issue. However, as the title suggests, the story is not all sad and gloom… or gritty. He takes depression for what it is.

 

Kinds of Reading Slumps

SCHOOL SLUMP

The first and major reason I get reading slumps is because of school. Yes, I still read for school because I’m an English major but it’s not on my term. Also, when I read for school it leaves little read for recreation reading. The only to get away from this slump is quitting school and I’m not about to do that.

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READING FRENZY HANGOVER

These slumps occur when I read too much in a short period. They leave me so exhausted that I don’t want to read anything else. After that, I try to pace myself with my next read, but that doesn’t usually work for me. I either read a book in 3 days or not.

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THE EMOTIONAL HANGOVER

I don’t usually don’t have mourning periods with the books I read. Sure, I get sad, I might even cry, but that’s never stopped me from picking up another book immediately. However, it’s happened. The only way I could get over All the Ugly and Wonderful Things by Bryn Greenwood was by reading reviews about it, reading the deleted scenes, sorta stalking the author, writing about my feels, and eventually reading it again. It’s also a good thing that I was in the middle of the semester and had to catch up on schoolwork after I took a “break” to read it.

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THE BORING BOOK SLUMP

The other slump I get from time to time is whenever I read a boring book. It’s a bad sign when you realize you rather do something else than read a book, and when that happens the solution is easy. Give up on it. I know it can be hard, but if it’s not working, then kick it to the curb. Grab another book!

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Let me know what kind of reading slumps you guys get, which one is the worse? Did I miss one?

Books With Unique Formats

I’ve always enjoyed books with unique formats because it’s different change of pace and can add to the story. Here are some of the books that I’ve read that have unique ways of storytelling.

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher

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ONE SENTENCE SUMMARY: Before committing suicide, Hannah Baker leaves thirteen tapes in which she explains why she killed herself.

FORMAT: One of my favorite formats on this list and my favorite aspect of the novel is the unique narrative. Because there are two stories, two protagonists, the story is told in a simultaneous double narrative. While you read Clay’s story you’re also listening to the tapes he’s listening to. It is confusing at first, but after a couple of chapters it’s easy to keep up with the story.

The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros

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ONE SENTENCE SUMMARY: Esperanza longs for a proper house to call home instead of the one she currently lives in on Mango Street.

FORMAT: This book is made up of a series of vignettes (really, really, really short chapters) that describe different moments in the protagonist’s life. The small chapters and Cisnero’s writing style make it a fast and enjoyable read. It’s one of the few books I re-read each year.

Crank by Ellen Hopkins

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ONE SENTENCE SUMMARY: A teenage girl get sweeped up by the world of drugs and struggles to come out of it alive.

FORMAT: This is a book written entirely in free verse poetry making it an easy and fast read. The author definitely has fun with the format and it shows, however it doesn’t take away from the serious subject matter. According to the author, what happens in the book actually happened to her own daughter.

NOTE: This book is the first in a trilogy but I’ve only read the first one.

Attachments by Rainbow Rowell

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ONE SENTENCE SUMMARY: Lincoln gets hired by a newspaper to monitor the company’s emails when he begins to fall in love with Beth Fremont from reading her emails.

FORMAT: The format changes back and forth between normal prose and email messages. I’m always worried about weird formats like this but then I’m proven wrong, and I’m always glad that I am. This is no exception because the emails form part of the most exciting moments in the story.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

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ONE SENTENCE SUMMARY: Charlie writes letters to an unknown person detailing his first year attending high school.  

FORMAT: Two things. One, I’m pretty sure everyone knows the format. Two, if you didn’t I already gave it away in my summary. The only other thing I can say is that I’m amazed at how detailed and long Charlie’s letters are. I don’t think I could write like he does.

Illuminae by Jay Kristoff and Amie Kaufman

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ONE SENTENCE SUMMARY: After their planet is attacked, survivors flee from their home planet in the hopes of reaching a safer destination while the Lincoln, a dangerous spaceship follows them through the cosmos.

FORMAT: This is the book that inspired me to make this list because it is so drastically different from everything I’ve ever read. It is a collection of interviews, videos, memos, emails, and so much more. It was a bit hard to understand the story at first but ultimately the format really made the story.

NOTE: This is the first in a series called the Illuminae Files. I also wrote a review of it you can check it out HERE. Spoiler alert: It was amazing!

DIARY FORMATS

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Diary formats, for me, can go either way. I either love them or hate them. For example, I wasn’t a fan of the format while I read Gabi, a Girl in Pieces but I think it worked really well for Go Ask Alice.
–  Gabi, a Girl in Pieces by Isabel Quintero
–  Go Ask Alice by Anonymous
–  Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes

Let me know what you think. Have you read any of these? Did I miss a book? Let me know in the comments!

Books That Made Me Cry

I’m not much of a crier but every once in a while I read a book and suddenly I’m either tearing up or bawling like a newborn baby. These are some of the books that I’ve read and made me cry, in order of how many tears I shed. Don’t worry there are absolutely no spoilers!

Breaking Dawn by Stephanie Meyer

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There is a small scene before a big battle where Nessie is worried about everyone and that small scene made me cry because I thought everyone was going to die. (That’s not a spoiler, if you haven’t read or seen Twilight, where have you been the last decade?)

“Life sucks, and then you die…” 

Allegiant by Veronica Roth

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“I fell in love with him. But I don’t just stay with him by default as if there’s no one else available to me. I stay with him because I choose to, every day that I wake up, every day that we fight or lie to each other or disappoint each other. I choose him over and over again, and he chooses me.”

Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell

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“It was the nicest thing she could imagine. It made her want to have his babies and give him both of her kidneys.”

 

All the Ugly and Wonderful Things by Bryn Greenwood

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“No. He said, if you love me as much as I love you, it’s not dirty. I loved him all the way and that meant nothing was dirty.”

The Problem With Forever by Jennifer L. Armentrout

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“Being real could hurt. Being loved could hurt. That’s what… what living is all about and the opposite is unimaginable.”

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

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“Because you are beautiful. I enjoy looking at beautiful people, and I decided a while ago not to deny myself the simpler pleasures of existence.”

Girl in Pieces by Kathleen Glasgow

Image result for girl in piecesThis book was a weird bittersweet cry. I was crying because after everything that the main character went through, she was finally hopeful about the future and it was amazing to finally see her get to that place. So, it was a happy cry.

“I don’t feel sad. For just now, I don’t feel scared. I feel, for right now, well, kind of triumphant.”