Finishing off a course of antibiotics and a new ominous cough starting up again. I could sit down and cry with frustration. The housemate still feverish and ill each evening.
Shouted at the Great Dane this morning for innocently digging a hole right outside the back door, and he quietly went into the study and chewed a lovely old brown and white blanket to pieces. That will teach me. Animals are extremely sensitive to the human mood of the household and act out when there is too much anxiety or bad temper about.
One of my favourite food bloggers, Deb of Smitten Kitchen, wrote a cookbook that was reviewed in the New York Times. Lovely to find out more about her. Her recipes really work, too, and she writes to her readers as if we are her friends. That for me is the key factor that sets bloggers apart from journalists or columnists. A blogger writes for friends and not strangers, especially for friends who share one’s enthusiasms, passions and vulnerabilities.
Mrs. Perelman’s style appears to resonate particularly with young women learning to cook. She is conversational, self-deprecating and often seems to be confessing, without ever really yielding embarrassing details. In her recipe index under D she has a section listed as “disasters,” like one entitled “flan flop” about a custard that would not jell.
A former vegetarian, she focuses on produce, especially on the farm-fresh kind that is currently in vogue, but not in a spartan way. She eats kale only under protest. Her scones are made with heavy cream. Her spinach quiche has cream cheese.
She answers letters and takes seriously advice from readers about how to improve her recipes. And Mrs. Perelman, who has struggled with her own weight, amusingly expresses her weakness for naughty foods.
Searching for my old CD copy of Ravi Shankar playing in the Concert for Bangladesh, hearing in my mind that ‘off-key’ atonal scale and haunting beauty. A friend just reminded me that Ravi Shankar played his sitar on the Beatles’ Norwegian Wood, something I didn’t know –
Smiling to come across a poem that reminds me of the opening of the carol-poem We Three Kings of Orient Are, from John Wedgwood Clarke, the kind of poem a marine biologist like Syd might like.
Star of wonder, star of teeth,
Star of feet that breathe as they’re squeezed,
Star with an eye at the end of each ray,
Star of zip-fastener undersides,
Star of childhood drowned in the sea,
Star in a white tray, under the knife,
Star of guts that come out to devour,
Star without centre, brain all over,
Star of Latin and death and spines,
Star of cuts slicing star from fish,
Star of labels digesting these innards
into star of wonder and function unknown.