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Monthly Archives: March 2022

Ken’s new web site

Ken on the Isle of Mull during our hike there in 2018 Readers of this blog over the years will be familiar with Ken Ilgunas, who lived here at the abbey on and off starting back in 2010. Most of his writing on his books was done here. Ken’s blog, which he started in 2009, […]

The Sierra Club

I felt a little irritated when I found in my mailbox a thick envelope from the Sierra Club. I had not renewed my membership, so of course it was a solicitation. The thickness of the envelope was clearly meant to give the impression of something valuable inside, as encouragement to open the envelope rather than […]

Free Guy, and The Adam Project

Few things go better with popcorn than a Ryan Reynolds movie. I have no objection to empty entertainment as long as it’s entertaining, but Ryan Reynolds movies are rarely entirely empty. Free Guy is, in part, a satire on contemporary confusion about what counts as real. And The Adam Project is a family story with […]

The humble onion, good as gold

There should be a National Onion Month or something. Onions are so always-available and so cheap that we take them for granted. Let’s pretend that March is National Onion Month and imagine how drab life would be without onions. Are there things in your kitchen that you stock a bit ahead as insurance against running […]

West Side Story

The duet “One Hand, One Heart” was recorded live on camera at the Cloisters I have seen four of the nominees for Best Picture at the 2022 Academy Awards — Don’t Look Up, Dune, The Power of the Dog, and West Side Story. I’m rooting for West Side Story. Only people my age will have […]

For solidarity with Ukraine: Pierogi !

Pierogi with roasted Brussels sprouts and Impossible vegan chicken nuggets Yesterday the Washington Post ran an article (with a recipe) on pierogi, written by an American with Ukrainian ancestry. I read the article and could hardly wait to make pierogi. The article is “Making Ukrainian pierogi roots me to my family tree.” I reduced the […]

Oil: Why can’t we ever learn?

The 1935 Mercedes-Benz 770 that belonged to Emperor Hirohito. Source: Wikimedia Commons. Here we are once again in that most familiar of geopolitical pickles. The advocates of progress and democracy still have the oil leash tight around their necks, jerking them around and holding them back. The other end of the leash is held by […]

Vikings: Valhalla

Were the Vikings really this crude? Must a television series about the Vikings rely on such crude plots? I’ve watched only the first episode of this new season, but so far it’s all about revenge, jealousy, lust, and greed. It begs the question, is there any continuous thread of human character from the medieval Vikings […]