Rough ideas, Rough talk

But far-out freaking brilliant!

(Late, but in horror of Earth Day — also the b-day of ???????? ????? ???????)

The Flower of England

You’ve heard the good news (& wrinkle), no doubt.

Windsor knows to be watchful!

The royal family keeps its eye on the main chance, even as the light goes out in the West:

The retreat from child rearing is, at some level, a symptom of late-modern exhaustion — a decadence that first arose in the West but now haunts rich societies around the globe. It’s a spirit that privileges the present over the future, chooses stagnation over innovation, prefers what already exists over what might be. (h/t Marginal Revolution)

This too comes to mind, alas.

Biscuits, circa 2012

(Click, then click again, for bigger biscuits!)

The modern version: fluffy, rich, embiggening!

Question: Did we just have an election between…

two grandsons of polygamists?

(Greil Marcus, I’ll put this here New Weird presently-strange America up against your Old Weird America any day!)

Biscuits Have Changed

We were talking about biscuits and their function in a meal. I related my Tennessee-born friend’s remark: “My mother made biscuits every day of her life.”

We talked then of biscuits as bread — as a stand-in for yeast-raised bread. Yeast bread most often has a kind of neutrality, mostly noticed if poor, but also if well-made, only excepting those with added cheese. or olives, or seeds.

It seems, then, that rich biscuits, or sweet ones, won’t serve the same neutral function for those eating biscuits every day (or every meal).

Further, a rich biscuit is not a frugal biscuit. And much of rural America, for much of the 20th century, made do with what was at hand.

So we postulated a past of leaner biscuits versus our present fat ones. (This has a parallel with the evolution of the muffin.  More on that anon!)

Here’s our research:

(click to enlarge)

The rough take? Leaner then, richer now. Actually, that’s a lot leaner, a hugely different formula.

We’ll test the old recipes and report back. More observations will follow.

To be Determined…

The President gained re-election having receiving nine million fewer votes than in 2008.

Hypotheses to be tested (all, some, or none may prove true):

  • all types of voters stayed home
  • women stayed home
  • evangelicals stayed home

For damn sure, someone stayed home.

Aphorism follows Aphorism

Reunited under one roof with a child (yea, grown) not seen for a long time, the restless parent will not sleep until the child (finally) does.

Aphorism for a Dark Night of the Soul

Much of the first night away from home is often given over to wondering whether one should have left home at all.

In This Room, the Onions Weep

The Stuttgarter Copra Spa & Tanning Parlor

Night Shift in a Pickle Factory

Gherkins (in process), Blackberry Jam, Mustard Pickles
Absent for photo op: Icicle Pickles

Fuzzy, Was he?

There’s a kind of symmetry here…

Wisdom from Westerns

The harder life is, ” she murmured, ” the less people ask of it.  People who don’t know fear or hunger or pain want a lot.  Those that face those things are happy if they have one small break.  Terror makes us all very humble.  How quick pride falls.”

— Aurora Brant to Jim Keene in Rim of the Desert (1944), Ernest Haycox, p.237-8

“Wash Teeth if Any”

Couldn’t have said it better myself.


via BoingBoing

Hitch Dead, Yes

Christopher is dead, maddening man. Capable of slashing rhetoric, full of lust for the fight, rampant on the ramparts, he cut a figure.  Oh yes, often wrong, and sometimes mean and low expeditious in an argument. Personally, we’re told, a generous bear of a man.

Lots of coverage everywhere; I cribbed this from Arts and Letters Daily:

Christopher Hitchens, polemicist, literary critic, anti-theist, raconteur, is dead. He was 62… NY TimesAPGuardianTelegraphWash PostGraydon CarterBenjamin SchwarzChristopher BuckleyNicholas ShakespeareMatt LabashJohn LloydJames FentonJacob WeisbergAnne ApplebaumTimothy NoahJustin EH SmithPeter HitchensJulian BarnesTimothy Garton AshDavid FrumDavid CornIan McEwanPeter WehnerDavid UlinJason CowleyNick GillespieRichard LingemanD. D. GuttenplanJohn HeilemannAnna WintourFrancis WheenStephen FryMick BrownRichard DawkinsKathleen ParkerRon RadoshRichard LeaSandra MartinAlexander CockburnGraeme WoodRoss DouthatSimon SchamaJames KirchickJoan SmithLee SiegelDave ZirinRussell JacobyBenjamin KunkelDaniel DennettGeorge ScialabbaKatha PollittGeorge Packer Damir MarusicMichael FitzpatrickMatthew RothschildJames FallowsMichael Lind

And see this from Jonah

His soul is in the sky!

My Momma She Tol’ Me


Slugs: not as delicious as they seem! | MetaFilter A linky link that also links on this: ” ingesting alcohol along with your snails lowers the number of viable parasites.” Good thing to know!



Wreck of the Old 97 721

A classic photo:

Train wreck at Gare Montparnasse, Paris, 1895

Exercise:  Use as a metaphor for the present situation vis-a-vis __________________.

(h/t Althouse)

But it’s a mighty rough road from Lynchburg to Danville
With a line on a three mile grade
It was on that grade that he lost his air brakes
see what a jump he made

He was goin’ down the grade makin’ 90 miles an hour
his whistle broke into a scream
He was found in the wreck with his hand on the throttle
A scalded to death by the steam

-Wreck of the Old 97, video

iPads for kindergarteners:  “I think this is a stunning idea” Yes, I’m stunned!

Mickey on Tish and Nick.  To be sure!