Door# 23: Yes, Virginia, There Is a Pooping Log,... →
Enjoy this collection of European Christmas traditions from Smithsonian.com’s “Food & Think” blog. The Pooping Log is part of Catalonian holiday celebrations: “Beginning on December 8, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, children in the autonomous Catalonia region of Spain “feed” their log; meanwhile, their parents discreetly make the food disappear. Come...
Door #20: Happy Hanukkah! What better way to kick off the Festival of Lights that with a video of the Grammy-winning klezmer band The Klezmatics playing on Conan O’Brien last night. I saw the Klezmatics live at the Knitting Factory in New York in the early 1990s , and it still ranks as one of the best live shows I’ve attended in any genre. If your tastes run more towards a capella,...
Door #19: Theme and Variation with Shortbread Cookies This is my go-to recipe for holiday cookies. Cardamom is still an unusual-enough spice in American kitchens that friends and family are pleasantly surprised when it turns up in buttery shortbread cookies edged with sugar. The recipe couldn’t be easier — a plus when you’re rushing to finish holiday shopping and decorating....
I know I’m a few days late to this party, but this is too hilarious not to share. As usual, Colbert is at his best when he’s skewering American exceptionalism: We live in a buttertopia…. We have so many goddamn kinds of butter that we’ve produced a product called “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter.” Because if you pick up any random object in the...
Door #8: Blah-la-la-la-la. La-la. La-la. I don’t think I realized how depressing some of my favorite Christmas Carols were until NPR’s astute pop culture blogger, Linda Holmes, pointed it out. “Blue Christmas.” Quite possibly the saddest Elvis has ever sounded, he would like you to know that not only have you broken his heart, but you have ruined Christmas. And snow....
This week’s Castle is just a little too Silence of the Lambs for me. I have to keep pausing it to shake off the suspense. It did feature this holiday-themed exchange though: Castle: [Seedy motels] are a veritable advent calendar of salaciousness — behind every door a delightful tale of desperation, depravity… Becket: Or death.
Door #1: Julkalender 2011 and a Recipe
It’s been five years since I’ve done a blog Julkalender — a sort of virtual advent calendar with 24 posts leading from December 1 to Christmas Eve. My first Julkalender was inspired by some Swedish bloggers, who were no doubt inspired by the month-long Julkalendar series Scandinavian TV networks broadcast each December. Here’s the explanation I wrote then: Every year in...
Today's lightbulb moment
When I saw this slideshow, I finally realized (in that deep “I knew this at some level before, but now I really know” way) that I am not a part of the New York Times’s target demographic. “Best” quote: In Houston, John Schiller, an oil company executive, and his wife, Kristi, a Playboy model turned blogger, custom-built a playhouse for their daughter, Sinclair, now...
Just passed the Newark Ikea and remembered going through customs after a flight from Stockholm. Standing in the queue, bleary-eyed Swedes looked out the window, expecting to see the Manhattan skyline, and saw the familiar blue and yellow signage instead. I could tell from their faces that they were wondering for a second if they’d actually left home.
On the un-absoluteness of color names →
Fascinating linguistics post on the acquisition and semantics of color names. The more I read about language and the brain, the more I realize how wacky and complicated it all is.
Managed to sleep last night despite it never getting completely dark, although the curlews kept waking me up with their infernal warbling in the 3 AM sunshine. Now off to enjoy the Swedish summer: sun, 65-70 degrees, blooming lilacs, meadows carpeted with yellow mustard flowers. In short, heaven. More Paris pictures to come when/if I have wifi again…
Thanks for stopping with that whole ash-spewing thing in time for me to make it to France during mara des bois season. Sincerely, Amy
C'est la vie
Delta Airlines is not exactly on my Top 10 list. I reserved a window seat online, and they gave me the middle of the middle. Feh! Let’s hope they don’t screw up my vegetarian meal request. Hoping for an actual “Hindu vegetarian” meal is probably folly. (Yes, Hindu vegetarian is an actual option, maybe my favorite option, on Air France, the airline, with whom I originally...
Men are from iPad. Women are from Kindle. →
I know, I know. Why am I surprised that this article appeared in the newspaper that invented new bestseller metrics so that its readers would be spared the horror of a list dominated by Nora Roberts and her ilk? The Times author dutifully trots out the statistic about women buying more books than men, but nowhere does he mention that a buttload of those books that women are buying more of are...
Note to self...
Avoid the iced tea from the café at Clarendon and Mass. Ave. in North Cambridge. It tastes like cheap sandalwood. Or, for those of you around my age, like the black light poster and incense aisle at a Spencer Gifts Shop ca. 1979.