Friday, March 8, 2019

Play to Me Only with Thine Straw.

Dear Project-minded,

Oboe, and I am not sure if I have already mentioned it to you, is one of my favorite words.  I also love 'bassoon.' 

Some time ago, I found this recipe for straw oboes, and just lately, I discovered a character making them in a book I am really loving:  Mrs. Miniver.   Which is how I knew it was time to send you the instructions for making the oboe.  In the book, a young character desires grown straw, but is in a place and time with the wrong kind of pasture grasses available.  (I wonder if the insides of our house of straw would have been suitable for making billions of oboes instead of walls?  I might hear some of their unmet potential if I listen carefully to my own walls talking).  As cultivated straw is unavailable to this young person, she gets a box of the manufactured kind of straws (as the book was written in 1939, I expect they were paper straws), and eventually gets the openings cut just well enough to play Drink to Me Only with Thine Eyes, which shall be our song for today. 

Once the song is over, and the oboe is made, I encourage you to read Mrs. Miniver- it's filled with fabulous words I enthusiastically looked up:  minims, crochets, piquet, mesembryanthemum, tumbril, woodcraft, tourbillions, skewbald, pyridine, post-prandial, boak, tricoteuse, eupeptic, billeting, vieux jeu, subfusc, dactyl, widdershins, trochaic, secateur, and degringolade. 

Here is the book, right here, if you want to read it this very instant.  I think maybe you should skip all the stuff there at the beginning, just for now, you can read later about Mrs. Miniver and the author.  Go right on to the first chapter, and let them both speak for themselves, even after 80 years.