October 17, 2014

A Meme!

Yesterday I was thinking I should post something personal, but goodness knows there is not enough time to reflect, let alone write something lucid and entertaining and engaging. But then Ann kindly tagged me in a 10 random questions thingy, and I bit.

1. What’s the most recent book you’ve read that you would actually recommend?
Gaudy Night, and really the whole Lord Peter Wimsey/Harriet Vane series from start to finish. She does something incredible with these. The first (Strong Poison) is a classic Wimsey mystery, but there is something stirring way down deep inside the character of Wimsey, that Sayers may not quite be able to contain. The second, Have his Carcase is fun and slightly frivolous. The third, Gaudy Night, stands on it's own as a profound mystery -- dealing with graver issues -- not that murder isn't grave, but English murder mysteries are almost quaint at times, whereas this is dealing with psychosis and social issues. It does so deftly and thrillingly; and by the end of it, we've seen the depth of Harriet Vane, and love her as Peter does. The Fourth, Busman's Holiday, we see a new side of Peter -- the side we always suspected was there but didn't have quite clear enough vision. As one of my commenters said, it is one of the most romantic books I've ever read.

2. What’s up next on you Netflix cue?
Hmmm. Been re-watching Parks and Recreation on Hulu. Netflix no longer has a true queue, but here's a good sampling: 20 Feet from Stardom (which is supposed to be incredible, it's a about the women who sang back-up for rock stars in the 60s and 70s), The Good, The Bad, The Ugly, every Marx Brothers film available, and most classic British mysteries and comedies, most of which I've seen, but I always want to see again.

3. Favorite season and why?
Let me quote the Green Lady in Perelandra: "The fruit we are eating is always best of all." -- I love all the seasons, when I am in the midst of them. I will say though: I don't love the transition. When summer is leaving, but there are none of the pleasures of fall (color, crispness in the air, clear days and cool nights) I yearn for sunshine and (yes, even) humidity. The only exception is spring, where the transition IS the season, and I love every moment of it (so I guess Spring is my true favorite).

4. If there was one professional sport you could banish from all the land, what would it be? Elaborate.
Football. As George Will says "Football combines the two worst things about America: it is violence punctuated by committee meetings." (Plus the worst aspects of modern American culture: loud and unsubstantial television commentary and aggressive advertisements.)

5. You go to your mom’s house. She says she’ll make you anything for dinner. What do you ask for?
Steak Candy. It's grilled skirt steak with a really marvelous BBQ sauce. But she cannot make it anymore because our back yard is too windy for a grill to work. I've never been able to recreate it.

6. What game did you play the most as a child (this could be an imaginary play game, board or card game, or outside game).
Hmmmm. Mom and Dad love strategic and long games like Risk, so we couldn't really play till we were older. There was this one farm-game that was sort of like Monopoly, only way more complicated, and we would bring it out play for a few hours, and then write down meticulously what all we had and put it away, and take it out again a few months (or a year) later, and continue. I'm pretty sure we never finished that first game. My personal favorite game is Taboo. And the only pretend game that my siblings and I could play for any period of time without arguing was lego village, where we'd each play with our own legos, creating a village of sorts (the sort of village that had spaceships alongside pizza parlors along side beach houses alongside pirate ships alongside ski resorts alongside medieval castles, of course).

7. What’s your worst Internet habit?
Watching Parks and Recreation when I get home LATE from work, instead of going straight to bed.

8. Chore that you would happily pass along to someone else given the chance?
Mambo said about me once: "Laundry is your albatros."

9. Fall is the season of the scary movie. Are you for scary-scary or not?

10. You have a Saturday available to you with no responsibilities (work, children, etc.) and all to yourself. What do you do?
Goodness, it's been so so so so so so so long since I've had a Saturday off... Assuming I didn't got to bed at 2 am the night before (because of work), I'd: get up early, make coffee, and read for a bit in the morning. Go to the Farmer's market by 9 (so the good stuff is still there), and pick up a croissant on the way. Come home and cook something with the market goodies. I'd go out for the afternoon: museum, hiking, to the river, book in hand, stop in a coffee shop. Dinner with friends (out or at home), and a nightcap at home, which usually means staying up and talking for hours.


  1. Your Saturday sounds perfect. I think it would take me much longer than five minutes to come up with my ideal Saturday, but it would share many of the things you mentioned.

    Steak candy sounds amazing!

  2. This is lovely. Reading it felt like having a conversation with you :-) And I love your dream Saturday! Sounds wonderful.