Wednesday, July 30, 2008

oh dear, oh my--a new mission


Isabel & I have decided we need this. We may have to move one piece at a time and/or make bits...but the cottage is gonna happen. We will just have a little fundraiser.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Three more pounds of green beans


okay it was really only 2 lbs 11 oz
Got three more cucumbers too. May be able to pick the first sphaghetti squish this weekend.
The tomatoes are starting to kick in. several delish handfuls of cherry/grapes --SO far so good. One nice size beefstake. It may be time to buy the freezer.

Monday, July 28, 2008

The Snaper & The Dark Knight


get it? Snape + Paper*=Snaper. Well *I* think it is amusing.

James' (& Harry's) patronus =white stag
Lily's patronus=white doe
Snape's patronus )=A WHITE DOE

La cerf blanc The origins of this creature are from the early Indo-European cultures, particularly the northern Celts and pre-Indo-European cultures. In old school Christian iconography, the unicorn is usually interpreted as a symbol for the Christ figure ie, the SAVIOUR! There is an easy identification between the white stag and the unicorn, and it can be reasonably argued that the white stag is the equivalent of the unicorn in these northern cultures, (beastie, four legs, white and horny--sounds valid to me!) Said peoples who do not record any unicorns. (snert--like anybody ever actually...yeah...okay)

*ahem*
The white stag of these Celtic myths is an indicator that the Otherworld is near. (oooh scary!) It also appears when a hero starts a quest; the white stag often appears in the forests around King Arthur's court, launching those boys off to adventure.
C. S. Lewis uses this device at both the beginning and end of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. And this dear one is where my argument (Snape= a good guy) begins, for you see along with every other questing hero; Snape is so bloody noble that his entire being his reason for living is CHIVALRIC LOVE!! He loves the Lily soooooo much that he ran a defensive subterfuge that ultimately saves the universe!! (Eat that Luke Skywalker!) Yay team chivalry!! How ironic that he is head of Slytherin when he is in fact the biggest Gryiffindor of all!

All of this came to a nice interconnection at the Showcase Cinema 20 Friday night. Finally saw THE DARK KNIGHT.

*SPOILER*
1.Lots of stuff blows up!!

2. Gary Oldman is so effing hot.
3.Heath Ledger (rip) is sooo much better then Jack as the Joker.
Ledger scared the CRAP outta me. Nicholson was too cute. He should have channeled more of the writer from THE SHINING and less Witches of Eastwick. But I digress--let's wrap this tangent back around to why Bruce Wayne is the biggest Gryffindor of all time and Snape and Batman have the same designer?? All that flowing black material. *sigh*, oh hush dear ones..you know my inner goth refuses to grow up. If a guy has teflon armor or just cloth covered buttons, it just doesn't matter, it is all a cover for a heart of gold. The anti-hero that's who grabs my attention. mmhmm--The social misfit. The lone samurai. The angsty poet.

The one who is really gonna have the power to defeat evil is the one sipping coffee in the corner, not the golden child running the meeting. The one who isn't afraid to get dirty doing the job. Snape, Strider, Saayid, Sawyer, Batman (Frank Miller NOT Bob Cane thank you veddy mush) those are some tempting morsels who when all is lost pull the hope from their back pocket and save the day.

And Snape and Bruce Wayne?

Self sacrificing chivalry at it's highest form. Fuck Lancelot and Guinevere. They were WEAK. They gave in. But not my Snape. He did what needed to be done. He snuck behind enemy lines and just like Batman--er Bruce Wayne--let the girl do what she thought best. When Rachel left that note with Alfred I was fairly screaming NOOOOOOOO!! HE LOVES you!!! (not really I hate audience members who yell at the screen). but seriously?! Couldn't she see the higher mission?? Man what a dipshit. Arwen waited!!
Lily shoulda waited...well ...true...she didn't have to really wait...but I believe she chose poorly. I would love to see a fanfic that was an early meeting of the OoP. One where Snape & James are trying to be Dumbledore's Army. Hmmmm.....
______
*(Brian quite reading THIS drivel and pick up Order of the Phoenix. Ya should have just took it last night!)

Thursday, July 24, 2008

The Coffee Trader--David Liss

As I stare into the murky depths of my second mug o'java I realize this is the fourth Jewish centered book this summer. Hmmm, Clan Ullman is permeating my brain. However this is the first one about coffee and coffee should always be first. (Esp before typing)

This novel is set in 17th C Amsterdam. So I am all over it, even more because it is an "elegantly composed historical suspense thriller". I HAVE A GENRE!!! Or should I say my novel Fealty has a genre.

I am enjoying this book quite a bit more than the Michael Chabon's I just finished. I also like the way Liss does a chapter per character to introduce everybody. During the production his film "The Hidden Fortress," my beloved Japanese director Akira Kurosawa has been fabled to have gone through the following composition: a seemingly hopeless situation would be shown, and only after a concerted deliberation by the production team would the protagonist be given a way out, and the film would then proceed to the next scene. (Hmmm sound like the LOST writers?... YES!)

My darling readers need only be reminded of this anecdote (which I am sure I have rambled on about in some other Post Modern post---oooh that's not too wordy! *insert sarcasm*) to grasp the nature of both this novel, the author G.R.R. Martin AND my own book which is, of course, rolling around in my head.

"Where no friends remain friends or enemies remain enemies,"
Poor Miguel hurdles through the ever-changing schemes & machinations to finally obtain his monopoly on coffee, he lost his guilders after a sugar market crash and is now trying to resurrect himself by searching for investors who would consider a new product called "coffee", he lives in his brother's house and has the hots for his brother's wife --then he hooks up with a sexy Dutch widow, WHO in my opinion is the strongest character. I don't why; but, I really like female characters written by men. What would Dr. Freud say?

Right now in the narrative Miguel is gambling on the speculative coffee market, gauging the "right moment". EEEP!! Drama!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Happily I have a big mouth...

thus I can take really big bites of stuff, my beloved gran would perhaps say, "you have bitten off more than you can chew". Why dear readers may ask, do I think I have too much to chew?

ACTIVE PROJECTS REQUIRING ATTENTION:
the garden-the tomatoes are planning a sneak attack I am sure and I have accepted that this place will never looked "manicured"
Luna (puppy training)
editing/reworking the book
polishing the chivalric anti-hero Snaper
Aesa & Raito's feast: several foodie experiments in progress from pickles to mochi
a 14th c couched beadwork project
a scarfy knitted snood thing (done soon-- only 40 rows to go)
Projects being Plotted:
Winter accommodations for Gertrude
Japanese garb

Real Estate Oriented Projects
~at least 15 projects *IN* THIS house--including paint the downstairs pisser-- AGAIN!
~roughly five big projects OUTSIDE this house
~selling the other house (or if not by Aug 1st turning it into a rental=paperwork)

So did I spend the afternoon doing any of these things??

nope. I started gutting the workshop. I am as Paulie described "carving out a space". Right now we are at the sorting garbage from clutter and organizing other people's crap. This space is basically a finished third of the garage. But we have sort of been chucking random unwanted stuff from the house to this space. Matt is storing a lot of stuff. Amongst the "mayhem and foolishness" there are four bikes, a chicken, a couch, several mismatched book shelves. It is the home of Cynnabar's Golden Key, A lovely desk, a lot of stereo equipment and amplifiers. I need the Clean House Crew. They could make a mint at the garage sale just with the left over bella flooring! How much does that stuff run? too much STUFF!!!

Wish me luck.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

unsatisfactory: 7 hours later

Took Peanut to math camp.
Ate an egg.
Cleaned up the kitchen.
Walked beasts. Counted a flock of 17 Canadian geese in my yard.
Batted tennis ball for dog.
Vacuumed the kitchen, the library, the dining room and the living room.
I organized. Spiffy new planner all ready to roll. Checked dates, collated calendars. Getting some "work" done here peeps!
I weeded (papers-- not the garden) pitched and recycled. Good work here.
I listened to the lament of the oldest offspring who didn't get the grade he wanted. Tried to sound soothing.
Texted hubby about oldest offspring's brakes. All is well.
Ate a slice of turkey wrapped around a cheese stick with a leaf of lettuce wrapped around that.
Read own writing... moved a few letters around.
Let dogs out.
Read more of own writing. (different piece)
Checked a spelling, got sidetracked at the WMU Medieval Congress Webpage. Ended up at Luminarium.
checked Scrabbulous games. losing.
Read more of own writing--changed a few words. At least this is stronger than Harry as Hamlet!
Checked email. Laughed at A. & M. & M. being silly in public.
Read more of own drivel decided I might better buy a lottery ticket.
Picked up Peanut from mathcamp--bought m&m's and a lottery ticket. Watched STYLE network.
Realized I should have gone to Water Park w/ Rollo & Xander....sigh.

ARRRRRGH. After not writing ANYTHING for almost five weeks I had high hopes for today.

shhhh... or a Room of One's Own

I have the house to myself. Zoli & Pete are off to Stratford to see a play or two. Izzy is at math camp till 3:30. Guess who is gonna get some work done? ME!!! I plan to spend the day editing. After I pay for Matt's brakes the phone is going OFF. Did you know Louise Erdrich AND Diana Gabaldon both have separate buildings where they write?? bitches.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Steampunk accessories

Kate & Victoria got me my first official Steampunk paraphernalia! When they came in for art fair (I have fun pics on the cell phone but I can't get them off Verizon's stoopid page) they gifted me with this awesome little fellow. Isn't he swell??

Then Saturday at Matt's b-day dinner; Roxy and I got to talking (mostly about PR Season 5!!) she remembered that she had some old welding goggles!!! They look GREAT on the bowler!!

GO THUNDERBIRDS!--Garden


I am not sure a simple "wow" can express my pleasure at the success of the veg garden so far this year. Barring Luna rampaging through it my fantasy of putting up ketchup, pasta sauce and salsa should be a "go". Though next year I am going to take what Mel of Sq ft gardening proclaims with a little dose of salt. I am having spacing issues to say the least. One plant per sq ft!! HA!! I scoff at his published ass. My heirloom from seeds are HUGE sprawling monstrosities! We have attack squash! NEED MORE BOXES!! (Petey promised me two more. In fact we may even put in parsnips for this fall.)

It was a proud moment for me when I got to tell Kate's friend the caterer--( whose name I can't remember) that everything but the eggs and the capers came from the garden in this Salad Nicoise. Next year even the eggs. (Yes dear ones, Gertrude is still our main form of pest control and she is quite good at it!)

Friday, July 18, 2008

what did the daddy tomato say

to his young son who was lagging behind?? "C'mon son--KETCHUP!!"

Ha Ha Ha--

yeah..

My ass is dragging. pics here

Ten days of Fargo peeps--a whirlwind adventure that included the 4th of July, six pints of strawberries and a wee lassie who I believe turns one year old today!! We went to Celtic Fest in Saline which was the start of this July-ish weather. HOT HOT and more HOT. But it was fun to get Trex in a kilt and very amusing to see how long he could creep behind Cynnabar w/out getting tagged. Even in mundanes that boy commands a presence. He made it about seven seconds before the fighters ID-ed him.

We had two days off and then Zaynab and Faillen arrived for art fair. We saw the new film MONGOL. AWESOME!! I do love having house guests who agree that we can make fuzzy hats! The braided chords were very intriguing. The trim and fasteners on these coats were gorgeous. Pete has a couple of sources on Japanese braids. I need him to make ties for the menus for the feast.*

But it has been soooo HOT, too hot for all the pretty coats (read: "we live in a Yurt"-- parka type coats) in that movie! In fact Izzy kinda melted yesterday. The last thing she needed was a furlined medieval mongol coat. with really long sleeves. BUT the boots! Did you see the boots?
God I love costuming.

Missed Ortho appointments and puppy's first vet trip, the never ending pile of laundry, frankly I just want to sleep!
Matt turned 22. That is alarming. I am old.

We have tickets for Krapp's Last Tape next week! which reminds me--I need a new planner. The last one only has about a week of pages left in it. I feel like if I don't have things written down I will forget them--it is an unsettling feeling to know things are gonna happen but just have them as "NOTES." I would also like to know my office number for Fall. Everything for class is pretty much ready to roll. Just a few more tidbits and it will all get uploaded.

Stuff for Terminus is all good. I refuse to stress about a seven minute presentation. The rest is all icing! Is it August yet?

* (Not a footnote--just proof of my disjointed idiocy)
The plans for Raito and Aesa's Coronation feast are progressing nicely. The menu is good. So many things are so easy, (and CHEAP!) It is gonna be FUN! Although It will soon be time to consider the mochi. I also want to make kitchen slave hats like Hauviette did. The feast is going to be delicious. The first two courses and the dessert are Japanese and then there is a second course that is more palatable to the "midwestern populace". I have said it before and I'll say it again. If you are going to buy a ticket for a medieval feast--don't expect a cheeseburger!! I hope they get little bowls.

In other news Gertrude is still doing fine. She ate a frog. I saw it. eww. (Did I tell you that already? sorry.)

The garden is doing what it is supposed to do--which is grow. A LOT! Next year all creeping things (squash, cukes and wallymelon) will all be accorded free rein OUT OF THE BOXES!! Sheesh. The whole vines climbing up the trellis thing is cute on paper but these plants do not understand that they only get THEIR square foot, not the square foot that is alloted to the peppers and the leeks or whatever neighboring veg they try to overtake. Poor Basil is fighting to creep out from under the tomato jungle. The lettuce finally seems to be calming down but is still producing nicely. Green beans are nummy and we are heading for our second harvest of them, the herbs are all rocking.

At the moment I am all good. I just need a little nap.

Monday, July 14, 2008

wheeee!


Sunday, July 13, 2008

eat more pastries

My littlest houseguest.
Please beloved readers forgive my recent distraction. Today was the day my darlings all departed. After nearly ten days of friends-- Again I am bereft of company. Back to talking to the dogs and Gertrude. (who is quite fine--BTW) Along with the news of poultry progression--The garden is going gangbusters. Please note: Matthew turns 22 on Weds. And I am quite sure This is the first time in months I haven't *wanted* to cook. I am that whipped! It is a happy tired but tired nonetheless. Pics and more to come soon.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

2010

Alexandre made us promise that we would be at Castle Rouge's 40th bash but this is also on the list for entertaining travel that year. EEEEEEP!!!

Monday, July 7, 2008

sausagefest



Friends from Fargo are here. Blog is being neglected. Life is good.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Those poor French students

The BBC story is here.

okay that sounds like a plot for one of my short stories. Just add a new found medieval manuscript scanned into the missing laptop and generate a love triangle and we are good to go.

Except I didn't create that "bizarre" plot. It is real. It makes my stomach hurt.

I have this weird feeling in my gut. Constant Dull Anxiety. I just want to hear some good news. I have been clenching my jaw too much; esp. when I read the Freep or listen to NPR. Not helping the general feeling of doom and gloom is the fact that I am also reading this very thoughtful book titled "God is Not Great--How Religion poisons everything" by Christopher Hitchens. It was on The Daily Show back a couple of weeks. It is centered on illustrating the stupidity of organized extremist religions and the atrocities that humans commit upon one another in the name of religion. It really makes my stomach hurt.

Last night, as part of Izzy's Johnny Depp obsession, we watched the film Chocolat with the kids. I of course had seen it at least twice before. I do love this movie and it has a lot going for it: A. Mr. Depp faking an Irish accent and looking smoking hot while doing so-- B.) Django's music & C.) CHOCOLATE!! It isn't a happy flick though. Zoli was hoping for PoC or at least Edward Scissorhands but got "kissing" instead. Kissing and religious candor.

The scene when the Mayor/Count is cutting up his wife's dress gave us an opportunity to discuss hypocrisy and abuse of power. I've always encouraged the kids to not be sheep. This film definitely supported a lot of our "family values"= honesty, kindness, hard work, creativity, color, music, "new flavors"--but most of all compassion. I am glad we watched it. I think it reinforced a lot of what I am trying to teach them. When they kissed us goodnight and headed upstairs Zoli said he was glad I didn't "wear black shoes" which referenced a pretty poignant moment in the film where the little girl is sick of her mom being "different" and just wants to fit in with the gray little village. That Z. processed that feeling and applied it to us and we came out on top...that was pretty damn cool.

Maybe if the thugs who stabbed & roasted those poor students had watched a movie about tolerance with their mom&dad the world would still have two brilliant bio-chem students.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Brocco-stimpy


We are big Ren & Stimpy fans. In one episode of this silly cartoon the charaters are spoofing an old school animal program that I adored when I was young girl. Marlin Perkins was the host on Mutual of Omaha's WILD KINGDOM, so I am particulary tickled by the satire of the "Crocostimpy" and our fam has absconded with the phrase and adapted it to the huge ass broccoli the garden is offering,

PS: CHICKEN UPDATE:

Many rabid readers are doing silly things like phoning (ya'll KNOW I hate talking on the phone!-lol) or trying to distract me during Scrabbulous games on FB, so here is a weekly update on Gertrude and her further adventures.

a.) she is still alive
b.) she is still in the kitchen (It got down to 55F last night)
c.) her feathers are now in the majority with the baby fluff adding a fashionable sort of boa-accent down her spine and on her little booty. Her peeping occasionally sounds like a sneeze, which we think is a sort of "pre-cluck" noise
d.) she is VERY affectionate and in particular seems quite fond of Zoli (maybe cuz he is stinky too?)
e.) her presence has Isabel avoiding eating chicken nearly completely