pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)
Seeing these cookies at a Starbucks after today's workout reminded me of time spent laughing and drabbling with y'all -- especially [Bad username: valis2.livejournal.com]. ;)

octopus cookies at a Starbucks

And the recent "36 hours" feature on Tokyo in a mainstream US newspaper brought to mind fics shared with [personal profile] geri_chan, [personal profile] lysanatt, and the rest of the Harudaki deep-divers.

(I have not cancelled my subscription to said paper, primarily because access to its archives remains essential for my work, but the defensive condescension displayed by various staff members -- see analyses at Fusion, Esquire, American Orthodox if you need context -- has me irritated enough to cease linking to or quoting from said paper for the time being. As I said in my note to its executive editor, "In publishing writers whose claims wouldn't make it beyond a New Yorker fact-checker, and headlines that not only soft-pedal but normalize the Trump administration's crimes, [your paper] has plummeted in reputation to the point that I can no longer link to or tag [any piece from the paper] -- even nonpolitical ones -- without asking myself to what degree my own credibility will take a hit.")

This entry was originally posted at http://bronze-ribbons.dreamwidth.org/408969.html. I see comments at DW, IJ, and LJ (when notifications are working, anyway), but not on feeds.
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The Christmas Day service at First UU ("It's the Most Jewiful Time of the Year") included a dramatic reading of Lemony Snicket's The Latke that Couldn't Stop Screaming, led by the sabbatical minister with audience participation (congregants waving their arms and going "aaaaah!" on cue); a Dr Who reference (Rabbi Rami: I was hoping to watch the special tonight but my wife is insisting that we go out for Chinese); an extended Star Trek benediction in both Hebrew and English; and substantive theological points to consider, with the rabbi comparing closed systems (salvation-based) and open ones (hope-based). The quote I repeated to several other people later in the day : Johanan ben Zakkai's "If you are planting a tree and you hear that Messiah has come, first finish planting the tree."

Also: The thrill of hearing a professional soprano several pews behind me warbling through "Silver Bells" and other standards. The pleasure of petting my friend Victoria's therapy dog through the first half of the service. The hugging of friends and acquaintances and the talking about plans for dancing, performing, volunteering...

For champagne tea with my honorary mama, I baked potato wafers. The BYM and I heard someone very, very good playing the piano in the assisted living lobby when we arrived, and it was indeed her son, who'd brought along sheet music for several super-silly, wildly virtuosic seasonal pieces.

I was not feeling well enough to join the late-night crowd at Lipstick Lounge, but I did stay up to sort out a few things and to say a few more blessings...

second night

And, speaking of blessings, my thanks to all who responded to my Feast of Stephen appeal. I am full of gratitude. See you in 2017.

This entry was originally posted at http://bronze-ribbons.dreamwidth.org/407370.html. I see comments at DW, IJ, and LJ (when notifications are working, anyway), but not on feeds.
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The subject line is from Alison Luterman's "Telling Your Own Fortune."

Graceland shooting range

Elvis's shooting range, Graceland, Memphis, February 2012

I devoted most of my Saturday was to one of the tulip beds. There is more weeding and digging and hauling to be done -- it is not a large patch of dirt, but I have neglected it for several seasons. This year's shoots are looking scraggly, and I am not feeling confident about the two hollyhock seedlings I have been sheltering with pasta jars, but I shall start more plants after the cleaning and prepping, and spending time outside was my chief priority.

I also stopped by Woodland Wine Merchant for the Saturday tasting. Of today's samples, I liked the Domaine de Fontsainte Gris de Gris (a rosé) the best.

Over at nineveh_uk's DW and LJ, I'm enjoying the discussions about naff hymns and mondegreens and Boredom Increments for wedding singers.

This entry was originally posted at http://bronze-ribbons.dreamwidth.org/401194.html. I see comments at DW, IJ, and LJ (when notifications are working, anyway), but not on feeds.
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But the real hurdle facing "Londongrad," one I didn't expect, wasn't that it was too Western. It was that it was too Russian. A common stance among educated Russians -- the ones I imagined would enjoy "Londongrad" the most -- is to refuse to watch a series or a film simply because it's Russian. The first Twitter reactions to "Londongrad" sounded the same note, over and over: "It's watchable, probably because it wasn't filmed in Russia." "As much as I hate everything Russian, I might give this one a try." "God help me, I can't believe I am watching a Russian TV series." "I might watch it later. I'm in no mood to see my compatriots." On a site devoted to romantic fan fiction, an author expressed her shock after combining two of the lead characters' names into one, as is the custom among fanfic writers (Misha + Alisa = Milisa): It was the first time in her memory that the names were Russian.

- Michael Idov, My Accidental Career as a Russian Screenwriter

This entry was originally posted at http://bronze-ribbons.dreamwidth.org/399960.html. I see comments at DW, IJ, and LJ (when notifications are working, anyway), but not on feeds.
pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)
dragons and Laurens


Something I have been giving thanks for recently: living long enough to enjoy the company of people who share my interests, and to see some of those interests catch hold in larger circles and even get their fifteen minutes (and then some).

The John Laurens biography is a gift from around 15 years ago, from a friend I met back when our journals were on Diaryland. I first heard of Laurens during the 1984 miniseries on George Washington, and developed such a crush on the combination of his idealism + tragic fate (or, to be precise, Barry-Bostwick-as-Washington's reaction to it) + the actor portraying him (Kevin Conroy, since known mainly as the voice of Batman) that I ended up combing through all the Washington bios in the high school and local university library for any mention of Laurens, writing two papers on him and drafting a third ("Alexander Hamilton's Best Friend") in my 30s.

So it was a hoot for me to check in on Jen Talley's timeline yesterday, where she was live-tweeting about Hamilbrarians rapping (#alamw4ham #Lib4Ham #alamw16)...

...which is icing on top of my Hamilton-Laurens stocking stuffer having 1066 hits as of today.

If I'm remembering right, I "met" Jen through a Sayers mailing list and then stayed connected through Diaryland and now Twitter. I met [personal profile] dichroic through the same Sayers list, and this year she answered my yearning for the baby Loch Ness monster ladle in the photo above. A friend I met through Snupin fandom sent the sleeping dragon cake pan.

I mentioned both the ladle and the pan yesterday night at a party, having been greeted by the substantial Nessie sculpture in the host's front yard. During the course of the evening, the conversations also included Cthulhu, Doris Salcedo, earring backs, film processing, Stephen King, parks, bruxism, real estate, the High Museum, imaging tech, karaoke at the American Legion, cold water flats in Africa, and trying to finish art/craft projects begun mumble-mumble years ago.

And also cancer and health: one of the guests was a man younger than me with a newly installed replacement hip -- one of many surgeries resulting from cancer + treatment. He emphasized how glad he was to still be here. Another guest was a librarian who, as she put it, will be living with myeloma for the rest of her life. The day before, a friend from high school e-mailed me about a classmate who has just begun treatment for leukemia.

Which all ties back to feeling so immensely grateful that I am here, and you are here, and we together get to giggle and admire and obsess and shout out these things to each other and (if/when we choose) to those in the wider world longing for the spark and sizzle and solace of shared interests, and the things we make and send in celebration.

This entry was originally posted at http://bronze-ribbons.dreamwidth.org/399830.html. I see comments at DW, IJ, and LJ (when notifications are working, anyway), but not on feeds.


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Peg Duthie

October 2017

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