Tag: History (Page 2 of 6)

Seven Things I Love (3-14-2022)

  1. 1. This Bust of an Unidentified Black Slave by Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux – Housed at The Met Museum, the bust is one of only two known versions carved in marble. It is a powerful representation of the brutality that people of color endured and how they responded with fortitude and strength.

“Created twenty years after the abolition of slavery in the French colonies (1848), the sculpture was debuted in Paris in 1869 under the title Négresse, a term that reinforces the fallacy of human difference based on skin color. The subject’s resisting pose, defiant expression, and accompanying inscription – ‘Pourquoi Naître Esclave!’ (Why Born Enslaved!) – convey an antislavery message. However, the bust also perpetuates a Western tradition of representation that long saw the Black figure as inseparable from the ropes and chains of enslavement.” 

From the Met Museum website

2. This Short Film Created by Apple (so admittedly it’s one long ad) – this short film is very well done. You will actually become invested in what happens to these four people, you’ll find yourself rooting for them. I also liked that they are basically addressing a “Great Resignation” issue. (Though in reality, haven’t difficult bosses who don’t appreciate their employees and overwork them; and employees who dream of going off and making it on their own, haven’t these things been around forever? What was the tipping point?)

[Found on Inc.com]

3. This Nautical Discovery – This is HUGE. I have been slightly (okay, not slightly) obsessed with the history of Ernest Shackleton’s expedition on the Endurance for decades. I think the main reason for my being drawn to their story is because rarely do you hear about such a disaster where every single person survives.

Here’s what happened. The Endurance became lodged in ice and began to sink. This took a long time and they were able to get a lot of things they needed off the ship. Eventually it was crushed and sank completely. The crew were stuck on the Antarctic ice for about 17 MONTHS.

The men finally were rescued after Shackleton and a group of five men made an arduous trek 750 miles in a small boat to a British-owned island called South Georgia.

The men documented their 17 months with photography, which is another reason why the story is so interesting. Here are some newly restored photos. And here are some photos from negatives discovered in the ice. And more photos here. You can just keep finding more and more.

[Found on BBC]

4. This Reunion – Filmed on the Polish-Ukrainian border, photographer David Melero Pena caught the reunion of a father with his young daughter.

According to the Newsweek article where I found the video, the translation of the post’s caption is:

“The reunion…destroyed me while editing photos and video. I just have no words.”

[Found on Newsweek]

5. This “Witch” – On Sunday Emma Watson was the presenter for “Outstanding British Film” at the BAFTAs.

Rebel Wilson introduced her and joked, “Here to present the next award is Emma Watson. She calls herself a feminist, but we all know she’s a witch.” (Who wouldn’t love that introduction?!?!)

When Emma Watson got to the podium she said, “I’m here for all of the witches by the way.”

Most people recognized that this was a slight snub at J.K. Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter books, the series that made Emma a superstar.

For those of you who haven’t heard about the controversy surrounding Rowling, she has made some anti-trans comments in the past and has been accused of having written an transphobic mystery novel,

[Found on Pink News and Mashable]

6. This State’s Legislation on College Tuition – OMG, NEW MEXICO rocks!

Legislation was signed into law on March 4, 2022 by Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham that will make college free for students who choose to go to public universities!

From the article:

On March 4, 2022, New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham signed into law the New Mexico Opportunity Scholarship Act after it passed both state legislative houses. The law allots $75 million to a fund of scholarships. This will expand scholarship coverage from 10,000 to 35,000 students in the coming fall. An award of tuition and fees is coordinated in partnership with the public or tribal participating college. Almost any New Mexico resident qualifies, including continuing and part-time students. Students must maintain a minimum of six credit hours and a grade point average of at least 2.5 during their time in school.

[Found on My Modern Met]

7. This Letter – I love this SO MUCH. The letter is wonderful (the life of a public service employee!) and no one could read this aloud better than Keegan Michael Key.

Word of the Week


Quote of the Week

Seven Things I Love (3-7-2022)

Tuesday is International Women’s Day
CELEBRATE accordingly!!!

  1. 1. This Ukrainian Artist’s Work – Maria Prymachenko’s artwork are cheery and colorful but some of the pieces are darker, which is not surprising considering what the Ukrainian people have been through over the past decades.

[Found on Kottke.org]

  1. 2. This Website – The V&A Museum kept quite busy in 2020 and 2021, and through social media and online activities they kept their patrons informed and engaged during the pandemic. I follow them on Facebook and get their newsletter but somehow I missed this.
  2. Luckily a friend of mine’s daughter is dressing up as Marie Antoinette for school and while I was looking for this picture to show both of them I found this fun page.

What we have is an interactive site that allows you to create your very own Marie Antoinette style wig! You can make it as small or as LARGE as you like (I discovered that depending upon the way you swoop you can even create braids). After you’ve made your wig you can decorate it with a various feathers, flowers, pendants, and other items (note the ship). Last, but not least, you can powder it to your heart’s content (there are some lovely colors to choose from.)

Here’s one of my creations

I always love learning new things, especially history. This was particularly fun. Is seems the wigs got pretty out of control for a while. Men’s wigs were as big a deal as the women’s wigs.

[Found on Dazed Digital]

3. This Mom’s Sense of Humor – Kayla Marie Sullivan used her skills from when she was a reporter to convey the difficulties of parenting a two-year-old.
It’s H-I-L-A-R-I-O-U-S.

@kaylareporting

Now accepting donations for babysitters & or take out! Venmo: @Kayla-Sullivan-96 🤣 #NewsVoice #ToddlerMom #EveryKiss #newsvoice #YerAWizard #2022

♬ original sound – Kayla Marie Sullivan

4. This Historic Mystery Solved! I have loved the Venus of Willendorf (sometimes called the Woman of Willendorf) since the first time I saw it. I mean, what’s not to love – they worshiped a voluptuous babe!

The Venus is estimated to be around 30,000 years old and made from oolite limestone. It’s called the Venus of Willendorf because it was found in 1908, somewhere close to the banks of the Danube River near Willendorf, Austria. But they’ve never know her origin.

Researchers led by Gerhard Weber, an evolutionary anthropologist at the University of Vienna, believe they have matched the figurine’s limestone with a location near Lake Garda in northern Italy, revealing the likely origin of “one of the most famous signs of early modern human symbolic behavior,” according to a study published on Monday in Scientific Reports

The new research suggests that the crafters of this iconic object, a hunter-gatherer culture known as the Gravettian people, traveled hundreds of miles across the treacherous landscape of Europe before the last ice age, though the team noted that it’s unclear what might have prompted such a journey. 

From “Scientists Solve 30,000-Year-Old ‘Venus’ Statue Mystery, Study Says” by Becky Ferreira; March 1, 2022; Vice-motherboard

[Found on VICE]

5. This Crowd-Sourced History Project – Charles Dickens is well-known for his literary genius but one lesser known element of his life is that as a younger man he taught himself a form of shorthand using Thomas Gurney’s 18th century manual on Brachygraphy. The word Brachygraphy means “a system of writing using abbreviations or special characters” – in other words, shorthand.

There are several documents that Dickens wrote using brachygraphy that scholars have been struggling to decipher, some with success. But the one that has been most elusive is the Tavistock letter.

Two Dickensian scholars, Claire Wood of the University of Leicester, and Hugo Bowles of the University of Foggia, decided to create the Dickens Code Project in the hopes of getting assistance from puzzle experts and code breakers around the world. They ended up with sixteen full submissions, none of which were complete.

Shane Baggs, a computer technical support specialist from San Jose, California, won the overall contest, while a college student at the University of Virginia named Ken Cox was declared the runner-up.

Since then, Baggs and Cox have managed to finished deciphering nearly 70% of the letter, far more than they ever expected. You can see a line-by-line translation here.

Full page of the Tavistock letter.

6. This Inspiring Article – With all that is going on in the world we need some positivity and hope. Here ya go.

[Found on Harper’s Bazaar]

7. THIS Postmodern Jukebox Video – I was lucky enough to get to go to a REAL concert last week. I saw one of my favorite bands – Scott Bradlee’s Postmodern Jukebox (PMJ). And man, I was not disappointed!

PMJ does covers of songs in a variety of styles, such as the roaring twenties, sixties girl group, swing, jazz, gospel, and “film noir.”

This video is one of the songs sung at the concert – you will recognize it right away. We didn’t have this many performers but some of them – like Tia Simone (wow), LaVance Colley (wow), and Olivia Kuper Harris (beautiful) – were there on Friday!

Click on the photo below to see the video.

Word of the Week


Quote of the Week

Seven Things I Love (1-24-2022)

1. This Recipe for Drop Scones – Sent by Her Majesty the Queen, Elizabeth II to President Dwight D. Eisenhower in January 1960, this piece of correspondence is part of the Letters of Note project: “nothing but history’s most famous letters.”

I love ‘Letters of Note,’ (LON) both for the history and the literary finesse. This one has an added treat – the addition of an audio clip (at the top of the page) with the absolutely wonderful Olivia Colman, in her role as QEII from ‘The Crown‘, narrating both the letter and the recipe.

You can subscribe to receive one Letter of Note per day in your inbox here. There are also several print books – two general collections and several themed collections. Those are available for purchase here but be aware, they ship from the U.K. and the postage is a bit high.

The ‘Letters of Note‘ audiobooks are available through Chirp, Google Play, Audible, and other audiobook streaming services. Letters of Note: Correspondance Deserving of a Wider Audience contains not only the Queen Elizabeth drop scone letter & recipe read by Olivia Colman, but letters read by Benedict Cumberbath, Juliet Stevenson, Alan Cummings, Gillian Anderson, and Mark Strong, among others.

Queen Elizabeth II’s recipe for drop scones. From Letters of Note.

2. These Hats of HBO’s The Gilded Age – I watched the first episode, which premiered tonight (January 24th). I’m hooked. And not just because of the hats. I also loved the dressed and the jewelry and the furniture too. Seriously, the story is pretty good. I’m currently watching several series and none of them have me very excited. In fact, I even stopped watching one of them – and I really wanted to like it – but none of the characters were remotely likeable.

The Gilded Age is the newest series by Julian Fellowes. If you are unfamiliar with him, he also created Downton Abbey. There will be ten episodes and new episodes will air at 8 pm (CST) on Mondays.

(FYI, the young blond woman in the straw hat – second photo below – is Louisa Jacobson, Meryl Streep’s daughter.)

3. This “Starter” Apartment in Paris – Fairly well-appointed for a first apartment, don’t you think?

The 90-square-meter (968-square feet) flat is on the ground floor of a late-19th century, two-story building near the rue Oberkampf. It opens to a compact kitchen designed by Marianne Evennou, who preserved the existing stone walls and exposed beams—”the atmosphere is at once a house and a workshop,” she says—and responded with an urban-rustic approach.

4. This Artwork by Louis Wain – If you haven’t seen the movie ‘The Electrical Life of Louis Wain‘ on Prime Video yet, I highly recommend it. Not only is it a lovely movie (though it does have its share of tragedy) but it’s very historically accurate, which makes my heart go pitter patter.

As far as the accuracy of Wain’s life, from what I’ve read, it does seem they got that right as well. The movie stars Benedict Cumberbatch as Louis Wain, Claire Foy as Emily Richardson-Wain, Toby Jones (LOVE him) as Sir William Ingram, and its narrated by Olivia Colman.

Once you’ve seen the movie you’ll truly appreciate his art.

Two Jugs of Milk by Louis Wain

5. This Story with a Happy Ending – I remember when I was moving into my first house. At that time I had three kitty cats. Before the movers arrived I put all the cats in one room and shut the door. That way I could give instructions to the movers and then one by one move my beloved kitties into my car.

When the movers got to the apartment I told them the plan and said DON’T open this door until I have all my cats in the car. I put my first cat in the car. Then I put the second car in the car. I came upstairs to get my third baby (her name was Madeline) only to discover the door open to the “cat room” and of course no Madeline. Not surprisingly I freaked out. I looked all through the apartment then ran down the stairs and looked around the apartment building. People who lived in the neighborhood heard me calling her name so they started to help me look too.

Unfortunately, after about an hour the movers were finished and it was time for me to go to the house. Heartbroken I got in my car and drove to my new place. The movers unloaded all the furniture and boxes in about an hour (I had way less stuff back then.)

I went back to my old apartment and did another search and then went to the Wisconsin Humane Society to see if maybe they had found Madeline. It was a long shot but I was pretty desperate at that point. No luck.

Dejected I went to my new house, gathered up my other two cats (Indira and Beddi), plopped down on the sofa, and started to cry. That’s when I heard this very soft “meow.” I sat up. It was coming from the kitchen. Did I imagine that? I walked into the next room. No, there it was again. Where was it coming from? I listened. OMG, it’s coming from that stack of boxes! I started to tear open the big moving boxes and when I got about halfway down out popped MADELINE!

Apparently, when the movers had opened the door to the “cat room”, the little bugger got scared and hid in one of the open boxes. The movers just sealed the box up and carried it out to their truck. ARGH!

Still, that was most definitely one of the happiest days of my life.

Having told that story, I understand how this guy felt when they found his dog, even though it was weeks later.

[Found on The Modern Met]

6. This Absolutely Adorable Video of Mandy Patinkin & Kathryn Grody – These two should be the role models for every human being.

7. This Excerpt from a New Book on the Shackleton Expedition – For some reason I have always been interested in the Shackleton Expedition. Not really any other arctic expedition, just this one. There is something to be said about mans’ (or womans’) fortitude when facing a crisis. Or at least that used to be the case.

The book is Shackleton: The Biography by Ranulph Fienne’s, published January 2022 by Pegasus Books. It covers part of the expedition that generally is skipped over.

When explorer Ernest Shackleton and his crew set out for Antarctica on the Endurance in 1914, they had no idea their journey would become one of history’s greatest epics of survival. After sea ice trapped the ship for nearly a year, ultimately crushing it, the men camped on unstable sea ice for months. The loss of the Endurance and a later, extraordinary ocean crossing to South Georgia Island by a small party led by Shackleton are well-known chapters in the saga. Less familiar is the story of what happened in between those two events, when Shackleton decided the crew would leave their position on the ice and venture in small open boats across the infamously rough Southern Ocean, to one of the region’s uninhabited islands.

Preface to “Remembering a Little-Known Chapter in the Famed Endurance Expedition to Antarctica” by Ranulph Fiennes

Word of the Week


Quote of the Week

Seven Things I Love (1-10-2022)

Hi guys, I think that I have finally figured out most if not all of the email issues so fingers crossed!

1. This ‘Lesson of Worth’ Video from L’Oreal – YES! Viola Davis, I believe you.
I have worth. Honestly, Viola Davis is one of those people who could read the phone book and I’d find it inspiring.

2. This Photo of the All-Black 25th Infantry Bicycle Corps – There is so much that is amazing about this photo. The fact that there was an all-black military unit in 1869 (a rarity to be sure), the fact that there was a “Bicycle Corps” (the bicycles back then were not nearly as easy to maneuver as the bicycles of today), and the fact that they chose to shoot the photograph in a place where the men clearly couldn’t ride their bicycles (at least I don’t think they could – actually, maybe they could!) It makes me want to know more about the Corps. Fortunately, Montana PBS created an hour-long documentary, and the full thing is available on YouTube.

“Formed in 1869, the 25th Infantry was one of four African-American military units posted west of the Mississippi, serving as protectors and peacekeepers.” [From ‘U.S. Army’s 25th Infantry Bicycle Corps: Wheels of War‘ on. HistoryNet.com]

“Bicyclists’ group on Minerva Terrace. [Lt. James A. Moss’s company of 25th Infantry, U. S. Army Bicycle Corps, from Fort Missoula, Montana.] YNP.” October 7, 1896

[Found by KK, thanks so much!]

3. This Betty White Sitcom, ‘Life with Elizabeth’ – Losing Betty White on December 31st was a great loss for the world. There are few people who have brought as much joy to so many for so many decades.

Betty White is most well known for playing Sue Ann Nivens on Mary Tyler Moore and Rose Nylund on The Golden Girls but she had many recurring roles over the years:

Elka Ostrovsky on Hot in Cleveland (2010-2015)
Agatha McLeish on Pound Pupplies (2010-2013, animated)
Ann Douglas on The Bold & The Beautiful (2006-2009)
Catherine Piper on Boston Legal (2005-2008)
Mitzi Stiles on Ladies Man (1999-2001)
Shirley Wallace on Maybe This Time (1995-1996)
Sylvia Schmidt on Bob (1996)
Rose Nylund on The Golden Palace (1992-1993)
Rose Nylund on The Golden Girls (1985-1992)
Ellen Harper Jackson on Mama’s Family (1983-1986)
Joyce Whitman on The Betty White Show (1977-1978)
Sue Ann Nivens on The Mary Tyler Moore Show (1973-1977)
Vickie Angel / Honey on Date With the Angels (1957-1958)
Elizabeth on Life with Elizabeth (1952-1955)

This doesn’t include her film roles and guest appearances!

Other than an uncredited role as an extra in a short film called Time to Kill (1945) and a role as a “Phone Girl” on a TV series called Hollywood on Television, Betty’s very first role was as Elizabeth opposite Del Moore on Life with Elizabeth. Each episode consisted of three unrelated skits which told the story of everyday life for a typical married couple. What made the show unique is that sometimes the characters would break the imaginary fourth wall and talk to the audience.

You can watch the first episode here.

4. These Earrings (and barrettes and pins oh my…) from Get Made in LA – I am in BIG TROUBLE! Mid-Century designs in my favorite colors in super lightweight acrylic. I mean, look at how great they look with my hair! They have every color so as long as you like the style you’ll find something you’ll love.

5. This Company That Makes Replacement Straps – Recently I bought a cross-body bag that was exactly what I wanted but for one problem – the strap was too short. The fact is, as a plus-sized woman, most cross-body bag straps are too short for me. Most cross-body bags hit me right below my boobs. I had been searching and searching for cross-body bags for plus-sized people and then it dawned on me, could I buy a longer strap?

The answer is YES!

I found Mautto via an online search and I’m very happy wth the strap I received. The color doesn’t exactly match. I may order another in the darker shade of red and use this first one with my iPad bag – It’s a much better quality strap. AND they are manufactured in the US!

6. This Book of Poetry by Amanda Gorman – I’m not that much into reading poetry, mostly because it usually goes right over my head, but I’ve been reading a poem a day from ‘Call Us What We Carry‘, and not only do I get it (well, most of it) but it makes me feel hopeful – which is pretty much the point.

7. This Movie – I knew that I had to see Encanto the minute I heard that Lin-Manuel Miranda was involved with the project. The cast is super talented – Stephanie Beatriz (Bob’s Burgers), María Cecilia Botero, John Leguizamo (he plays Bruno, we don’t talk about Bruno) , Mauro Castillo, Jessica Darrow (she voices my favorite character, Luisa), Angie Cepeda, Carolina Gaitan, Diane Guerrero, and Wilmer Valderrama (That 70s Show and NCIS.) The music is next level for a Disney film. And the story is something that many people can relate to – well, I know that I did. (As the eldest child, only daughter and only unmarried person in a family of four I have felt invisible for most of my life.) Available on Disney+ [TRAILER]

Word of the Day

2020 Resolution…


Quote of the Day

Seven Things I Love (12-20-2021) : Christmas Edition

1.  This Music Video by Ingrid Michaelson (Featuring Zooey Deschanel) – I’ve always been obsessed with animated stop-motion films created with felt.

Here’s another short film I’ve watched about a half dozen times (it’s on Netflix). It’s called ‘Robin Robin’ and it’s a delightful holiday gem.

 

2. This SNL Monologue by John Malkovich – truly a national treasure.

 

3. This Tour of Fortnum & Mason (and also Harrods) at Christmas – My friends know this, but F&M is my mothership and it’s been calling to me for the past couple of years. For myself personally, not being able to get to London and Ireland to visit my friends there and do all the things I love to do in the UK is in the top five most difficult things about the pandemic.

 

4. This Christmas Short (which is actually a Christmas Advert)

 

5.  This (Faux) Letter to Santa – gotta love a little historical humor.

[Found by my friend Jeanne (thanks Jeanne!)]

 

6. This Collection of Eggnog Cartons – Called the “Eggnog Project“, graphic designer Madeleine Eiche has curated a museum-worthy selection of eggnog cartons that exhibit the variety of designs in American eggnog packaging.

[Found on ‘Messy Nessy Chic’]

 

7. These Letters from J.R.R. Tolkien to His Children – Can you imagine receiving something so incredible? Not only were the stories wonderful (which is no surprise) but the drawings are magnificent!!!

 

 

 

Word of the Week

Quote of the Week

 

Have a Safe & Happy Christmas!

Seven Things I Love (11-8-2021)

1. This Photo of Frida Kahlo – I was uber excited when I saw this picture. I did a little research to see if I could find out how Kahlo came to be sitting with Nayantara Sahgal and Rita Dar, the daughters of Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit (who was the sister of Jawaharlal Nehru and the aunt of Indira Gandhi). I found this article and it doesn’t give a lot more information. It’s most likely that the two women were visiting Mexico in a diplomatic capacity. The article is very interesting though, talking about how saris are essential a garment of protest and resistence. Fascinating!

 
 
 
 
 
View this post on Instagram
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Brown History (@brownhistory)

[Found by my friend Ami on IG]

 

2.  This 80s Remix of Adele’s ‘Easy on Me’ – Wonderful, makes my heart swoon.

 

3. This Graphic of the Languages of the World – I love info stuff.  Puts things in perspective, doesn’t it? Tell me, why do we think that English should be the universal language? 

 

4. These Earrings from KIKAY – I KNOW I’ll be wearing them ALL the time. They’re super light and I mean, look at them with my hair! (The photo on the right is me.)  This shop is dangerous though. I also bought a pair of pink soot sprites (if you are a fan of Studio Ghibli you will remember they appeared in the films My Neighbor Totoro and Spirited Away.) And look at these guillotines – perfect for Halloween (always thinking ahead.) I know I’ll be ordering more earrings and soon.

[Found via Beryl Shereshewsky – If you aren’t watching her videos you need to do so immediately!]

 

5. This Example of Video Editing – Which is PURE GENIUS! Warning: it’s very easy to go down the rabbit hole on this person’s YouTube channel.

[Found by my pal Angela on Reddit. Thanks Stasie!!!]

 

6. This Table! – Seriously, how wonderful would this be, dining ON a Venetian canal? This isn’t staged, it’s a real table at a real restaurant – Ristorante Ai Barbacani

 
 
 
 
 
View this post on Instagram
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by OMER🥀 (@omergilony)

[Found via MessyNessyChic]

 

7. This “Last” Bookstore – I’ve wanted to go here for a while, but after seeing this story on CBS Mornings now I NEED to go here. A friend of mine went a few months ago (the lucky duck) and sent me a few snapshots but I think you need to see it in person. 

Word of the Week

 

Quote of the Week

 

Seven Things I Love (10-31-2021): Halloween Edition

I apologize for being absent again for a few more weeks but I took an online course about creating and designing websites. The exam was this past Wednesday. I got 97.8% on the final so I’m pretty pleased with myself at the moment. Let’s see if I can actually apply what I learned!

Started working on revamping the Menopausal Broad website but this is going to take some time, especially since I have two other websites to set up and design.

Let me know if there is anything you like or anything you don’t like!



1. These Anti-Witch Cakes – I think many teenage girls become interested in the Salem Witch Trials. The witch trials and Lizzie Borden and the Titanic, along with many other tragic, historical events. It’s not that we’re messed up or gruesome. We’re most likely the same people who go on to be really into true crime (which admittedly is a white woman’s genre.)

They are hideous-looking things, not appetizing looking at all. The fact that they have urine as an ingredient explains a lot and, well, I wouldn’t want one anywhere near me. Blechy!

Here’s a very thorough article about witch cakes.

[Found on Atlas Obscura]

P.S. Here’s another anti-witch device that was found 17 years ago in Kent, UK but it was only just determined that it was used to ward off witches. And guess what, once again this device (it’s a bottle) was filled with urine. What is it with people using pee to ward off evil? You’d think evil would like bad smells. [Thanks to Jeanne L. for finding this.]

2. These Halloween Houses in My Neighborhood – People are decorating WAY more for Halloween this year and it’s been a lot of fun but there have been a couple of houses that really caught my eye…

The first three photos are of the same house. This guy decorates his yard like this year-round. It’s so much fun!

3. This Lalique Bat Ring – I would totally wear this.

[Found by Ann L. – thanks Ann!]

4. This Pumpkin Library – Created by the Staff at the Truro Public Library in Truro, Massachusetts, the Facebook post has gone viral and the TPL staff are thrilled! Considering they serve a population of around 2000 residents (not including temporary residents) it’s understandable! Adorable and creative!

Here’s an article on Boston. com and here is one from the Boston Globe.

[Brought to my attention by Jeanne D., thanks Jeanne!]

5. These Vintage Halloween Cards – Some vintage postages are a little weird and at Halloween, they are downright bizarre. Apparently, 100 years ago they were very superstitious about courting and how a couple might get engaged on Halloween.

Also, there was the cabbage thing. It seems that people used to rap on people’s doors with cabbage stalks and they would even throw cabbages at the cranky neighbors when they answered the door.

Here’s more information about that from Boing Boing.

They found some handwritten texts to corroborate the tradition:

Halloween is always on the last day of October. We all have good sport eating nuts, bean, and apples on Halloween night. Some people celebrate it by hitting other people’s doors with cabbage stalks. Other people burn live nuts as a man and his girl to see which of them will die first. The people must be present in the house and then take the ashes of each nut and dream upon them. The dream is supposed to come true. Other people tie apples to the roof and try to catch them with their mouths. Others put an apple into a dish of water and try to lift it out with their mouths. Whoever lifts it out gets it.

The customs in my father’s time were to make raids to cabbage garden’s. Every one would have brought a cabbage which they pulled in the garden. The loss of the cabbage was mostly taken in good part by the owner. It was looked on as old custom even in those days. They cut the stalks from the cabbage head and some of the girls and boys went in front of the house where some bad tempered person lived. They hit the door two or three raps with the “kale runt” as the cabbage stalk was called in those days at the same time shouting “Halloween night”. The old man of the house came running out and opened the door. When some of the boys coming behind would throw a cabbage head in the door way which probably would tumble him. Halloween is kept as a pagan feast.

From ‘Bring back the Halloween tradition of throwing cabbage at people’ by thomas Dunn | Boing boing, Oct. 27, 2021

[Cards found on Flashbak, NYPL Digital Collections, and Suburban Turmoil]

6. This Halloween Cartoon by Politico cartoonist Matt Wuerker.

7. This Article about Salem and “Witch Consumerism” – Just like with Christmas, the Witch City needs to get back to its roots. I can’t say I “love” this article, it always makes me sad and/or angry when greed oozes into something and ruins it. And before anyone else says it, I’m not minimalist, but I think there is a difference between hawking wares and taking advantage of people. I’m not sure if I can explain this right now – it’s in my head but my head is saying it’s done for the night.

Word of the Day


Quote of the Day

Seven Things I Love (9-20-2021)

  1. 1. This Painting by Katsushika Hokusai, circa 1832 – I was fascinated by this piece of art when I first saw it. I must admit, I haven’t seen a lot of paintings of waterfalls so I don’t have much for comparison, but what I found most wonderful was the way the artist showed movement, both at the bottom of the waterfall and in the waves.

It may not be easy to see in the image below but if you go to this page there is a copy of the piece where you can enlarge different sections of the painting. You can double click on the image to enlarge it and then use the cursor to move the view.

P.S. I decided to look up to see what paintings there were of waterfalls and there are quite a few but I am unfamiliar with all of the artists. Which could explain how I haven’t seen any previous to this one. You should take a look, some of them are equally impressive.

2. This Micro-Documentary about the Liverbirds, One of the First Female Rock Bands – I’ve never heard of the Liverbirds, have you? (And it’s pronounced LYE-VER BIRDS.)

It’s infuriating that generations of women have had to make the choice between a career or a family. Wait, scratch that. Looking at history as a whole, the majority of women did not even have the option of a career. But in the past, oh, maybe 100 years or so, they sort of did. But of course women who chose careers were expected, unless they were in a lower income bracket, to stop working if they got married. Can you imagine what things would have been accomplished if women had been allowed to work?

3. This HUGE ASS Log Cabin – Sad that it burned down.

4. These Firefighters Working to Protect ‘General Sherman‘ – With all the floods on the east coast, news of the fires in California and the Pacific Northwest have fallen off the “front page.” But it doesn’t mean they have burned out. One wildfire hotspot has sadly turned out to be the Sequoia National Park. Sequoias are among the longest living trees in the world, most of them live hundreds of years. “General Sherman” is the oldest single trunk tree on the planet. It is believed to be between 2,200 to 2,700 years old. There have been a combined total of over 43,000 acres of Sequoias burned so far.

Firefighters, like so many of our public employees that get little notice, are real heroes.

Here’s a bigger view:

5. This New Book on Miniature Eye Portraits – Believe it or not, I’ve been obsessed with eye miniatures for years. I can’t believe they are publishing a book! Now, before you go “ewww” this is weird, the idea behind them was that lovers would send portraits of their eyes to one another so that they could have keepsakes and reminders but only they would know the person so well that they could identify them by their eye. It was to keep the relationship private or secret. Read this article to find out more.

6. This Astronomical Clock in Prague – it’s over 600 years old! I’ve been fortunate enough to have been to Prague twice, but both trips were well before smartphones. I’m sure I took plenty of photos but I have no idea where they’d be now. We’re talking mid-1990s. But two things I remember vividly are the Charles Bridge and this clock.

7. This Baroness von Sketch Show Sketch – LMFAO every time I watch it. SPOT ON!

P.S. And here’s a little follow up from last week. And I’m weeping all over again!

Word of the Week


Quote of the Week

This week I’m going with a poem rather than a quote – it was so good I had to share it. Of course traveling right now is not easy but once this damned pandemic is over we should all get back to traveling the world!

Try to travel, otherwise
you may become racist,
and you may end up believing
that your skin is the only one
to be right, that your language
is the most romantic
and that you were the first
to be the first.
Travel, because if you don’t travel then
your thoughts won’t be strengthened,
won’t get filled with ideas.
Your dreams will be born with fragile legs
and then you end up believing in tv-shows,
and in those who invent enemies
that fit perfectly with your nightmares
to make you live in terror.
Travel, because travel teaches
to say good morning to everyone
regardless of which sun we come from.
Travel, because travel teaches us
to say goodnight to everyone
regardless of the darkness
that we carry inside.
Travel, because traveling teaches us to resist,
not to depend, to accept others, not just for who they are
but also for what they can never be.
To know what we are capable of,
to feel part of a family beyond borders,
beyond traditions and culture.
Traveling teaches us to be beyond.
Travel, otherwise you end up believing
that you are made only for a panorama
when instead inside you there are wonderful landscapes still to visit.
– Gio Evan, poet and songwriter. Translated from Italian.

Seven Things I Love (7-20-2021)

  1. 1. This Reaction to a Young Fan’s Gift – If you’re not a fan of the Milwaukee Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo already (or if you haven’t heard of him), you will be after watching this. THIS is the kind of athlete we want kids to have posters of on their bedroom walls and who they should hope to be like someday and try to emulate.

Here’s more… when asked by a reporter, who taught him about keeping his ego in check, this was Antetokounmpo’s answer:

“When you focus on the past, that’s your ego: ‘I did this. We were able to beat this team 4-0. I did this in the past. I won that in the past.’ When I focus on the future, it’s my pride: ‘Yeah, next game, Game 5, I do this and this and this. I’m going to dominate.’ That’s your pride talking. It doesn’t happen. You’re right here.

“I kind of try to focus on the moment, in the present. That’s humility. That’s being humble. That’s not setting no expectation. That’s going out there, enjoying the game, competing at a high level. I think I’ve had people throughout my life that helped me with that. But that is a skill that I’ve tried to, like, kind of — how do you say it, perfect it, master it. And it’s been working so far. So I’m not going to stop.”

‘NBA Finals: Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo backs up viral ‘humility’ speech with unselfish Game 5 performance’ by Colin Ward-Henninger; July 18, 2021; CBSSports.com

You can watch the exchange below…

By the way, I love Giannis full name – it’s Giannis Sina Ugo Antetokounmpo. How gorgeous is that?!?!

[Found the second tweet via CBSSports.com – you should read the full story, the guy who wrote it is very good]

2. This Auction of Sylvia Plath’s Recipe Cards and Rolling Pin at Sotheby’s – Sadly, when someone’s life ends so tragically, one tends to make assumptions about what their life must have been like or how they lived. Myself, being someone who lives with depression (albeit moderate depression), I think that if a person is so depressed that they are driven to take their own life they must be miserable all the time. I don’t know why I think that. It’s certainly not that way for me. But then, I’m not suicidal.

When I get depressed all I want to do is build a cocoon around myself and not let anyone in. I don’t want to talk to people, I don’t want to go anywhere, I don’t want to do much of anything. I just want to pass the time with things that will distract and take very little mental effort. For me that generally means watching mystery television series from the 80s, 90s or 2000s and doing puzzles.

But I know other people who have depression and their way of dealing with it is much different. Some like to throw themselves into their work. Some like to surround themselves with friends and family. Some like to clean their house or do gardening or repairs they’ve put off. No one deals with depression exactly the same way. Everyone is unique.

My point is, there is a lot more to Sylvia Plath’s life than her being depressed and having committed suicide but unfortunately, that is mostly what people learn about and remember. But it’s really lovely to see these recipe cards with Plath’s handwritten notes and the names/ nicknames included in the recipes titles, which for me always is indicative of affection and sentimentality.

[Found on MessyNessyChic]

3. This Movie (This Beautiful Fantastic), Which is Currently Available to Stream FOR FREE on YouTube – A friend of mine suggested this movie to me a while back and I was lucky enough to catch it while it was streaming (can’t remember where) but shortly after I watched it, it was removed. For months it hasn’t been available anywhere. Now it looks like in addition to being available on YouTube it’s available on Amazon Prime. But I’m never sure when I see something that says it’s available on Prime (for free) whether it’s because I have the Masterpiece & PBS memberships or if it just is generally free.

Either way, whether you try watching it at the link below or watch it via Prime, I highly recommend this movie. It stars Jessica Brown Findlay (Lady Sybil in Downton Abbey, Charlotte Wells in Harlots and Elizabeth McKenna in The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society) as Bella, Andrew Scott (John Parry in His Dark Materials, The Priest in Fleabag, and Moriarty in Sherlock) as Vernon, and Tom Wilkinson (Author in Grand Budapest Hotel, Graham Dashwood in The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel and Gerard in The Full Monty) as Alfie Stephenson.

The premise of the story is that Bella lives alone in a small house which she rents. She’s a unique person, a bit compulsive, who likes to keep to herself. Now I’ll tell you, she works in a library, but that is only one of several reasons why I love this film so much. Many reviews call it a modern fairytale and it truly is.

Bella has a small garden behind her house and part of the rental agreement was that she needed to tend to the garden but she has let it go. She meets her neighbor, who is an ornery SOB, and not long after that happens, a representative for the owner of the house comes by for an inspection an discovers she has not kept her side of the deal. He tells her he’s going to have to evict her but she persuades him to let her have a month to fix the garden up.

I don’t want to tell you anything more but the characters are wonderful, the film is visually beautiful, and it has a magical quality to it.

4. This HISTORIC News from Chile – I mean, it’s actually rather pathetic that the first time a constitution is being written by an equal number of men and women is in 2021 but, well, it’s still commendable. (And there are negative nellies out there.)

5. These New Emojis – Turns out it was “World Emoji Day” on Saturday. I am excited about the disco ball! Though does it seem like these are a little male-heavy to anyone else? It could just be my mental state right now. These are awaiting approving and will become available in September.

6. This Airship of the Future – The airline industry is responsible for about 5% of global warming and these ships will “operate with 75% fewer emissions than a conventional airplane.” It may take longer (but look at how comfortable it will be.) Yes please!

[Found on MyModernMet]

7. This Incredible Pencil Shop in Tehran – There are a lot of bazaars in Tehran. I don’t think that this is in the Grand Bazaar. The video below says it is in the “Traditional Market” which I believe is also called Tajrish Bazaar. One person describes it as being “located in a corner of the bazaar between the two mosques in Tehran.” I can hear the call to prayer.

And here’s a video (pre-pandemic). You don’t need to speak arabic to be impressed or to find the owner, Mr. Rafieh, completely darling. Anyone so passionate and knowledgeable, how can you not love them?

[Found on the Present & Correct blog]

Word of the Week


Quote of the Week

Seven Things I Love (7-12-2021)

  1. 1. These Japanese Pastries – Nobody makes more delicious looking pastries than the Japanese. These are from a patisserie in Iwakura, Japan. Aren’t they incredible? For more photos visit this Instagram.

2. This New Book by Architectural Writer John Ota – A friend of mine recommended this book and I must say, it wasn’t what I expected. It far exceeded my expectations!

Ota and his wife wanted to create the perfect kitchen so he decided to travel across North America visiting kitchens from various eras found in a baker’s dozen of renowned homes, several belonging to some rather famous people including Thomas Jefferson, Georgia O’Keefe, Frank Lloyd Wright, Julia Child and Louis Armstrong.

Each chapter begins with a simple, hand-drawn sketch of a kitchen as well as a floor plan. Not surprisingly, Ota discusses the aesthetics, features, and functionality of the kitchens but he also covers the history and culture of the person, place and/or time associated with the room. He ends the chapters with a short letter to his wife Fanny, sharing with her what he learned and what he felt they could incorporate into their own space.

Link to WorldCat.org (to see if your local public library has a copy)
Link to the book at Bookshop.org

3. This Video of Alan Rickman Making Tea – as the title says, it’s epic. (It’s been around for a while but Alan was trending a week or so ago and whenever I think of him I think of this, among the dozens of other fantastic roles he’s done.)

4. These Bulldog Puppies – If you don’t want to rub those little bellies you aren’t human. (And those piggies!)

5. This Art Jeweler, Sarella Suarez – I bought the piece below (in silver) at an art festival this weekend. I LOVE IT so much! It’s about 30 inches long so it can be doubled and worn as two necklaces or worn as one long necklace. During festival season many artists have few pieces listed on their websites so at the moment Sarella only has a couple things in her online shop – you may want to check back again around October.

6. This Hydrangea Bush – I love hydrangeas but I had never seen this color, isn’t it gorgeous??? A friend of mine and I went to the Whitefish Bay Art Fest on Saturday and we parked on one of the side streets. As we were making our way toward the main road we saw these. It wowed us.

7. This Trailer for Season Two of Ted Lasso – There are a lot of shows I’m watching but this one brings me the greatest joy. Ted Lasso is Mr. Rogers for adults. If you haven’t watched it yet, you don’t know what you’re missing. (Season two begins streaming on July 23rd!)

Word of the Week


Quote of the Week

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