Monday, August 24, 2009

At Least There Won't Be a Quiz

I'm 200 pages into From Dawn to Decadence: 1500 to the Present by the late Jacques Barzun (he was born in 1907, so I assume he is no longer with us, but who knows? Perhaps he is sitting in a recliner somewhere with a wool blanket over his legs writing a thousand more pages that I will feel compelled to purchase), but I may as well be two pages in because as soon as I finish a page I immediately forget everything I've just read. Or almost everything I've just read. I recall the odd details, the tiny things that are not of much consequence. The fact (and one that I've mentioned here before) that Montaigne's father kept a musician on the payroll so that his son might awake each morning to the gentle strains of a flute, for example. Or that the use of all caps was stopped during Medieval times which proves, I guess, that Medieval times weren't all that Medieval. Also, it wasn't easy to make chainmail armor, you know.

And that's basically all I have to show for 200 pages. I am so awesome.


There are other things I must read. My fellow writing group member has completely overhauled his novel, and I must read it. Soon.

I, too, have completely overhauled something, and I must read it. Also soon.

John Crowley's Aegypt Cycle has just been reissued by Overlook Press, and I must purchase all four volumes and read them. Sooner rather than later.

I periodically re-visit Entering the Stream, and that period has arrived, so I must read it. Which I am, right now.

To reassure myself that I am not inadvertently engineering the destruction of my beloved daughters, I have just purchased So Sexy, So Soon, so I must read it. Yesterday.

I should probably get going now.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

I Wish & I Fish

I've come to think of summer as a sort of standing-in-line for Mr. Toad's Wild Ride, with Mr. Toad's Wild Ride being—of course—school. Here are some things I wish:

I wish I could, in good conscience, let my kids eat their school's hot lunch offerings, but since I cannot, I wish someone would invent a Rube Goldberg-inspired sandwich-making machine.

I wish the powers-that-be would stop hatch-hatch-hatcheting the education budget, but since they will not, me and my fellow parents will keep giving, raising, giving, raising, and giving money.

I wish I had not promised to make Aranzi Aronzo felt appliques for the girls' lunchboxes, but since I did, I will have to follow through. So far, I've completed a ram (a ram?!) for Lea's. It will be monkey for Ri and a fox for Vi.


There's been a little lull in my writing. I'm not a prolific writer in the first place, so I'm used to these fallow periods when I just collect stuff in my head—images, people, situations, etc.—without committing anything to paper/screen. It's been awhile, though, and still nothing is truly bubbling up, so I'm starting do to the antsy-pantsy dance (it's a dance that leaves much to be desired, complete with deeply pained facial expressions and much unattractive twisting and turning of the body). I was fishing around for a push when I saw Dan Chaon's guest post over at Well-Read Donkey. I love the way he has actual photographs of the places his characters live. Such a simple but smart thing to do, and so easy in this age of camera phones.

And then there's the Significant Objects Project, which is k-i-l-l-i-n-g me. The project bought various items from thrift stores and garage sales for a total of about $48 thus far. They then commissioned writers to create stories about the items, with the idea being that the stories will up the value of the items. To prove their hypothesis, they put the objects up for sale on eBay and included the story in the item description. And so far they've made more than $1,000. I love this.

Finally, my cousin Luj linked to yet another inspiring project called Mysterious Letters, in which two friends write one-of-a-kind handwritten letters—467 of them—to everyone who lives in a particular Irish village. Swoon.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Trip to Nowhere

Every year I reference an albino deer sighting, and every year < exaggerate > hordes and hordes < /exaggerate > of you cry out, "Nay, Nesting Ground Mistress, this cannot be so! Mistress, it cannot be so!" But at last I possess the visual proof to supra-contradict those who would doubt me:

* strikes the hands-on-hips-I-told-you-so pose *

In other (semi)remarkable news, our recent trip afforded the opportunity for me to share with my girls one of my favorite childhood movies: A Little Princess, Shirley Temple-style.

Can I just say? Today's child actors have nothing on Miss Shirley Temple. What a freaking pro. And I'm not just saying that because I burst into tears during several scenes. I'm saying that because I...burst into tears during several scenes. You can watch the entire thing on You Tube. I had no idea.

Where am I going with all this? Absolutely nowhere. And it is in keeping with my rambling nowhere-ness that I present to you an object that will no doubt consume you with a jealousy unlike any jealousy you've experienced before. Behold! Behold the necklace newly acquired by your Nesting Ground Mistress:




Now that I'm really looking at it, I'm not so sure. It was purchased in a fit of sorely needed retail therapy, and I believe my taxed mental state may have clouded my generally sound judgement. I'll let you know if I ever actually wear it. For now, um, just forget what I said about the whole jealousy thing.

Monday, August 10, 2009

What Do I Google?

I'm trying to think of the name of a deceased artist whose last name begins with a "B." Or possibly an "M."


Am I a person who lives her convictions or, alternately, am I just a pain in the ass?


The spousal unit hid his watch in the house, and we haven't been able to find it for 2 years.


Season 3 of Mad Men begins on Sunday, but I take issue with that and would like it to start whenever I say it should start.


Is my blog going to die?


Does something bad happen to people who have never read The Little Prince? Because I've never read The Little Prince.


And that concludes tonight's list of questions and/or issues that have no answers and/or resolutions.

Saturday, August 01, 2009


...I would like to be in 4th grade again. But in Japan. And with this guy as my teacher.






Did you watch it? Wasn't that something?

We're headed up to the lake for frolicking with the SU's extremely frolick-y family. See you back here in a bit.