Thursday, April 30, 2020

More bloom.









Tuesday, April 28, 2020

The Hub.

Dear Darlings,

As it has been in many homes in many eras, the hearth is taking the place of prominence:  The kitchen is the hub of sheltering in place.  Students are doing their chemistry lab assignments there, and humans are busily baking wild yeasted breads there also.  I know, because I talked to someone, that I am not the only one who is now in the luxurious position of not having to put all the cookbooks and recipes away on their shelves and card boxes, because no one is coming over, and I am going to need it again soon anyway.

Any excuse to make a list, and stacking books is a great one, so here is a list of the cookery books I have out on the table, coffee table, and kitchen counter (two locations!) right now:

Everything I Want to Eat, Jessica Koslow
The Rancho de Chimayo Cookbook, Cheryl Alters Jamison and Bill Jamison
Joy of Cooking, Rombauer and Becker
Tartine Bread, Chad Robertson
Celebrations Italian Style, Mary Ann Esposito
The Fanny Farmer Baking Book, Marion Cunningham
No Need to Knead, Suzanne Dunaway
Gourmet, Ruth Reichl, editor
Hot & Spicy Sauces & Salsas, Sally Griffiths
Tartine, Elisabeth M. Prueitt & Chad Roberston
Desserts by Pierre Hermé, Dorie Greenspan
Nothing Fancy, Diana Kennedy

The other day I also had out TV Dinners, Emeril Lagasse, so I could make Chicken Pot Pie with a friend via video conferencing.  Next week we plan to meet again remotely (she wrote, oxymoronically) to make this pie.  Maybe you will make one too.

Minutiae:  The Salted Maple Pie is a Chess pie, a Just pie, a Sugar pie; meaning that it's like pecan pie with no nuts; it is Milk Bar's Crack Pie; a custard type pie with eggs and sugar, butter, sometimes milk or cream; but no fruit, no nuts, no nothing: Just pie.  Here's one that I adore with chocolate chips.  If you get all into antediluvian pie recipes, check out Shoofly pie, a breakfast pie.

Saturday, April 25, 2020


Dear Artists,

Oh how I love a good transmutation!  Here is a very fine one; sent to me by a dear co-worker, who combs through all the other interesting blogs and sends me the best of it, which I send then to you!  It has your song of the day in it, so be sure you push the red and white play arrow.

Thursday, April 23, 2020

What next?

Dear Wondering about The Future,

Me too.  There is so much to think about right now.  I know you are thinking it too;  what will we want, what will we need, what will we do when we can do what we did before? 

I have been keeping track of what I miss, and, it isn't as much as you might think.  I miss the idea of getting to go places, but maybe not the actual going, if you see what I mean?  I miss the libraries.  I miss my job because sometimes it felt like it was 'important work,' but I am not such a fool that I didn't know that feeling was a bit of a vanity.  Mostly, I was around some mighty nice people, and now I am not.  I miss the ice cream and the coffee shop, but not as much as I would miss the empty lot if it were developed and turned into an ice cream or coffee shop.  I miss sharing close space with some people, but not all people.

This article crystallizes and echoes some of my vaporous thoughts about what I miss and what I don't miss.  I hope you will take the time to read it, and begin to imagine what you will want when you can do what you did before.

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Monday, April 13, 2020


Dear Ones,

What happens when there is a lot, when there is plenty?  I often get mired in indecision.  If there were only two songs,* like it seemed to me, late at night, listening, many years ago, to the radio, I would always be able to recall them. 

If there were only four books, four stories, I would be able to tell you them by heart.  I would tell you my favorite and never waver. 

What am I thinking, feeling, in this landscape of plenty?  I am thinking I am in no particular hurry, and trying to grasp the thought, the emotion, that is just out of my reach.  It feels unknown to me; like a new wildflower, and I can't find it in my field guide.  It isn't quite fear, or sorrow, and I don't think it is lonliness, it's more of a void than all of that.  It feels like maybe we came to the edge of that flat earth that doesn't exist, and we knew, in just a few more steps, that we would be seeing over the edge, into the unknown. 

It was like a string of pearls, this life, all tied in a line of time, and now it has broken all over the room, and pearls are rolling and scattering into corners they will never be retrieved from.  The best you could do, is to gather up what you can find and put it into a bowl, where they have a completely different relationship to each other.  They are a heap, there is no hierarchy, no beginning, no end, no middle; just an unstrung dish full.

When I am not thinking of these unstrung pearls and the shadowy specter of uncertainty, I remember that I wanted to send you these songs that were made as a response to Marty Robbins' El Paso.  They are your five songs for today.

* Song One & Song Two.  Song One is part of a trilogy-  here is Part Two, and Part Three.

Wednesday, April 8, 2020


Dear All,

It was about a week before I had dreams about it; arriving in the shape of a former lover so damaging that they would present themselves to my subconscious as the bringer of death in the form of viral contagion.  It is not lost on me that the relationship with that person was so long ago, and yet, even now manifests in my psyche as deathly pestilence. 

Sometimes they appear in the waking world, too, and I hide as best as I can.  Maybe you have heard from them too, here and there, and you have wisely kept silent as a response.

It means nothing, really, I suppose. 

Take care and be well.

Saturday, April 4, 2020


Dear Needled,

I am contemplating a yarn project.  Two things come to mind, plus a roadblock.  One thing is socks.  I have never even tried to knit them, because they are all fussy at the heel.  You have to make your tube of delightfully easy and repetitive knits and purls turn a corner, like some kind of Le Mans chicane!  It is nearly unfathomable.

The second idea is this octopus, which is really beautifully and fussily executed.  It's like 8 tiny socks!  Four times as hard as the socks, I reckon, but no heels.

The roadblock is the inevitable mistakes I will make in thin, delicate yarn.  But no, that's not right; the mistakes are just what they are, it's my feelings about the mistakes that are the real issue.

To make or not to make?    

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Meal Machines

Dear Waiting and Watching,

I am waiting too, and here is what we are watching at the Dodo:

Film one.

Film two.

Until we meet again.