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Monthly Archives: February 2020

Lest we forget: Nature bats last

“The Course of Empires: Destruction.” Thomas Cole, 1836. Click here for high-resolution version. About two years ago, I reviewed Kyle Harper’s book The Fate of Rome: Climate, Disease, and the End of an Empire. Harper drew on new climate research and what we might call archeological microbiology to remind us that political histories are only […]

Quorn Stroganoff

I had not thought of Stroganoff in years. If ever I had even made beef Stroganoff, I don’t remember it. But, a couple of weeks ago, the New York Times mentioned beef Stroganoff in its beautiful weekly column, “What to Cook This Week.” Once you get Stroganoff in your head, you might as well give […]

ATV’s: a new reality of rural life

Yesterday we had the first snow of the winter. It wasn’t a particularly heavy or pretty snow, but the neighbors, who have not one but two ATV’s, invited me to ride with them on today’s equivalent of a sleigh ride: the ATV ride. These neighbors have property on three sides of the abbey’s woodland, and […]

ᚱᚢᚾᛖᛊ : Escaping with Anglo-Saxon

With Lily. We escape together. Among the teetering stacks of books by my bed, I always keep some books for what I call fill-in reading. This is light reading for short reading sessions — for example, when I know that I’m going to fall asleep after only a page or two. One such book is […]

Sherlock Holmes ★★★★

Sherlock Holmes and the Secret Weapon, 1943 When my search for newer fiction fails to come up with anything that I want to read, I start looking for classics. I vaguely remember reading Arthur Conan Doyle many years ago, but if I’ve ever read The Hound of the Baskervilles, I don’t recall it. What fun! […]

Another waste of a big production budget

Above are the opening 38 seconds of Season 2, Episode 1, of The Expanse. How much of the dialogue can you understand? As if things weren’t already scary enough out in the real world, we now have to add the possibility of a global pandemic to our worry list. Good mental health requires some escape. […]