Amber's (scaifea) Thread #8

Això és la continuació del tema Amber's (scaifea) Thread #7.

En/na Amber's (scaifea) Thread #9 ha continuat aquest tema.

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Amber's (scaifea) Thread #8

1scaifea
feb. 27, 8:53am



Hey, everybody!

I'm Amber, a one-time Classics professor, turned stay-at-home parent/lady of leisure, turned part-time library assistant, turned once again Classics professor. I spend my free time sewing, writing, knitting, baking, and, of course, reading.

My reading life is happily governed by lists, which means that I read a healthy variety of things across various genres.

I'm 45 going on 12 and live in Ohio with my husband, Tomm; our son, Charlie, and Mario the Golden Retriever.

Here I am in Dr. Scaife Mode (you can tell that because my hair is, for once, actually combed and not just in a messy bun):



Favorite Books from 2020
The Lumberjanes collected comic volumes
Call Down the Hawk
New Kid
The Wise Man's Fear
The Slow Regard of Silent Things
Pride and Prejudice
Silver in the Wood
A Tale of Two Cities

2scaifea
Editat: març 3, 1:02pm



What I'm Reading Now:
-Guard of Honor (Pulitzer list)
-Ready Player Two (series read)
-Cursed (Schneider Award)
-The Henna Wars (romance list)
-The Moonstone (audiobook)
-Farmer Boy (family bedtime read-aloud)
-Memoirs of a Geisha (books I'm reading with my friend, Rob)
-The Club Dumas (an unread book from my shelves)

Books on Deck:
-Uncle Silas (books by year - 1864)
-(an unread book from my shelves)
-(a book from my Read Soon! shelves)
-The Experience of Insight (Buddhist reading list)
-A Likely Story (cozy mysteries)
-Henry VI Part 1 (Shakespeare re-read)
-The Ugly American (Banned Books)
-The Worm Ouroboros (Green Dragon 1001 Fantasy list)
-Wheels within Wheels (Prometheus Award)

3scaifea
feb. 27, 8:54am

The five-ish or so books I have going at once and the On Deck books nearly all come from the following categories and lists:

1. A book from the 100 Banned Books book (at least currently. As soon as I finish this list, I'll replace it with another, and oh, I've got tons of lists).

2. A children's book, for Charlie's library. I'm trying to collect books from various award lists, and I like reading them before reading them to Charlie or deciding to add them to Charlie's shelves. For this category, I’m currently working through three lists:
a. 1001 Children’s Books You Must Read Before You Die
b. The Newbery Honor books
c. Cooperative Children's Book Center list

3. A book from the Green Dragon 1001 Fantasy List, in chronological order.

4. A list I'm working through together with my best friend, Rob: The Hugo/Nebula/WFA/Bram Stoker (and other) lists (combined, in chronological order)

5. For this category, I cycle through 9 different stacks:
a. Agatha Christie's bibliography (in chronological order)
b. Stephen Fry's bibliography (in chronological order)
c. John Boyne bibliography (in chronological order, sort of)
d. Neil Gaiman's bibliography (in some order other than chronological (don't
ask)).
e. Christopher Moore's bibliography (in chronological order)
f. Maggie Stiefvater's bibliography (in chronological order)
g. The NEH Timeless Classics list
h. The National Book Award list (in alpha order by title)
i. The Pulitzer list (in alpha order by author)

6. An unread book from my shelves.

7. A book from my Read Soon! shelves.

8. A book on Buddhism or from the Dalai Lama's bibliography.

9. Book-a-year challenge: Three years ago, along with a few others in this group (*cough* Paul *cough*), I made a year-by-year list to see how far I could go back with consecutive reads. I've since been trying to fill in the gap years.

10. A book from the couple of series that I'm reading together with my mom.

11. A full-on re-read through Shakespeare's stuff.

12. A read-aloud-to-Charlie-at-bedtime book (or two).

13. An audio book, which I listen to as I knit/sew/otherwise craft/drive.

14. A romance novel, using as a guideline an excellent list of authors and works curated by lycomaflower (I know virtually nothing about this genre, but I now work in a library where many, many lovely people come through to check out books of this genre, and I want to know something about it).

15. This slot is reserved for books that just grab me and shout that they need to be read Right Now.

4scaifea
Editat: març 3, 1:03pm

Books Read

JANUARY
1. Spinning Silver (Alex Award) - 10/10 = A+
2. Swamp Thing: Twin Branches (Stiefvater bibliography) - 8/10 = B
3. Manchild in the Promised Land (Banned Books list, AlphaKIT: M) - 9/10 = A-
4. The Wish Giver (Newbery Honor Book) - 8/10 = B
5. Silas Marner (audiobook) - 8/10 = B-
6. The Story of Tracy Beaker (1001 Children's Books) - 8/10 = B-
7. Thick as Thieves (series reread) - 10/10 = A+
8. Lumberjanes #16: Mind over Mettle (series read) - 10/10 = A+
9. Pilgrimage (Green Dragon 1001 Fantasy Books) - 7/10 = C
10. Each Tiny Spark (Schneider Honor Book) - 7/10 = C
11. The House on the Borderland (Green Dragon 1001 Fantasy list) - 6/10 = D
12. Beyond Religion (books on Buddhism) - 9/10 = A
13. Outlander (romance list) - 6/10 = D
14. Commodore Perry in the Land of the Shogun (Newbery Honor Book) - 7/10 = C
15. Far Away Across the Sea (1001 Children's Books) - 10/10 = A+
16. The Daylight Gate (Read Soon! Shelves) - 8/10 = B-
17. The Queen of Attolia (family bedtime read-aloud) - 10/10 = A+
18. Works and Days & Theogony (Myth course readings) - 9/10 = A-
19. The Book Thief (books I'm reading with my friend, Rob) - 10/10 = A+
20. Return of the Thief (series read) - 10/10 = A+

FEBRUARY
21. The Bacchants (myth course reading) - 9/10 = A
22. Camp (romance) - 8/10 = B+
23. Song of a Whale (Schneider Award) - 8/10 = B-
24. Gardens of the Moon (Green Dragon 1001 Fantasy list) - 4/10 = F
25. Oedipus Rex (Myth course readings) - 10/10 = A+
26. Antigone (Myth course readings) = 10/10 = A+
27. Agamemnon (Myth course readings) - 10/10 = A+
27. Upon the Head of a Goat (Newbery Honor Book) - 8/10 = B
27. Volcano (Newbery Honor Book) - 7/10 = C
30. A Promised Land (audiobook) - 8/10 = B+
31. The Stone Book Quartet (1001 Children's Books) - 7/10 = C+
32. The Libation Bearers (Myth course readings) - 9/10 = A
33. Eumenides (Myth course readings) - 10/10 = A+
34. Electra (Myth course readings) - 10/10 = A+
35. The King of Elfland's Daughter (Green Dragon 1001 Fantasy Books) - 7/10 = C
36. The Goalkeeper's Revenge (1001 Children's Books) - 7/10 = C
37. Conrad: The Factory-Made Boy (1001 Children's Books) - 8/10 = B
38. Medea (Myth course readings) - 10/10 = A+
39. The Frogs (Myth course readings) - 9/10 = A
40. Metamorphoses (Myth course readings) - 10/10 = A+
41. Iliad (Myth course readings) - 10/10 = A+
42. Odyssey (Myth course readings) - 10/10 = A+
43. Aeneid (Myth course readings) - 10/10 = A+
44. The Histories (Myth course readings) - 10/10 = A+
45. Till We Have Faces (Green Dragon 1001 Fantasy Books) - 8/10 = B-

MARCH
46. My Sweet Orange Tree (1001 Children's Books) - 9/10 = A
47. Lord Foul's Bane (BSFA) - 2/10 = F
48. Manolito Four Eyes (1001 Children's Books) - 7/10 = C

5scaifea
feb. 27, 8:54am

The Kiddo at Work:



The Mario:

6scaifea
feb. 27, 8:55am

Copied from the end of the last thread:

Today's Agenda:

It's a rainy day here, but I'm okay with that. It was nice to wake up to the sound of it on the roof, and I even heard some birds chirping! I probably means we'll only take an evening walk, though, and skip the midday one. (I am also okay with that if I'm honest.)

Baking today (Potato Bread and a Double Fudge Chocolate Cheesecake), then some time in the sewing room, I think, and some afternoon reading time. I'll try to get a new thread up and running today, too.

On the reading front:
Still not a lot to report - it's not been a great week for leisure reading. I managed a few pages in My Sweet Orange Tree, but otherwise I spent the day on rereading some Herodotus for the myth class. Not that I'm complaining - I love Herodotus to bits. Such a hoot.

What We're Watching:
Friday Nights are Family Game Nights (we played D&D with Charlie as our DM) and then watched Graham Norton and QI. Always a good time.

7scaifea
feb. 27, 8:55am

The next one is yours - welcome!

8Trifolia
feb. 27, 8:58am

Happy new thread, Amber! Double Fudge Chocolate Cheesecake sounds delicious.

9scaifea
feb. 27, 9:00am

>8 Trifolia: Thanks! I hope it turns out that way - it's a new recipe for me. We'll see how it goes...

10Carmenere
feb. 27, 9:12am

Happy new one, Amber! >1 scaifea: yes, it's that kinda morning, isn't? Good reading weather, for sure!

11msf59
feb. 27, 9:15am

Happy Saturday, Amber! Happy New thread! Enjoy your weekend.

12ronincats
feb. 27, 9:17am

Happy New Thread, Amber! At least I'm getting in early on this one. Bread baking is also on my agenda for today.

13scaifea
feb. 27, 9:28am

>10 Carmenere: Thanks, Lynda! Isn't that just a perfect picture for today? I'm hoping to get a lot of reading done, too.

>11 msf59: Thanks, Mark! Have you got some bird watching on the agenda for this weekend?

>12 ronincats: Thanks, Roni! Oooh, what kind of bread are you baking?

14ronincats
feb. 27, 9:30am

Haven't decided yet. Need to look over what I've got on hand and assorted recipes!

15scaifea
feb. 27, 9:31am

>14 ronincats: I look forward to finding out what you decide on!

16MickyFine
feb. 27, 9:43am

Happy new thread, Amber! I'm assuming with all his story writing, Charlie is an excellent DM. What kind of quest are you on and what character type are you playing? I've dabbled in D&D but Mr. Fine plays regularly so I pick up a lot by osmosis.

17drneutron
feb. 27, 9:53am

Happy new thread!

18scaifea
feb. 27, 10:20am

>16 MickyFine: He's an excellent DM, Micky. He runs a group with his friends, too, who have nicknamed their club the Tall Narrator Adventure Guild. Adorable.

I'm a half-elf outlander (*ahem*) named Rowan Siannodel. Tomm is a rogue thief somethingorother. We're on a mercenary mission to deliver a cartload of goods to a certain town and we got ambushed by a bunch of goblins. Tomm and I have challenged ourselves to see who can make Charlie giggle the hardest during our D&D sessions, and it's turned into a really fun and hilarious story. Our characters get into spats constantly and outwardly hate each other but it's a odd couple/buddy cop/hate-to-love romcom, essentially. Last night we got jumped by a gang of thugs and rolled to escape. I did and he didn't. I wavered about going back to save him and decided I probably should even though he's a complete idiot for not being able to escape on his own. Epic fight ensued. So fun.

19scaifea
feb. 27, 10:20am

>17 drneutron: Thanks, Jim!

20SirThomas
feb. 27, 10:50am

Happy new thread, Amber.
Have fun baking, eating, playing, reading, ...
I wish you a wonderful weekend.

21scaifea
feb. 27, 10:56am

Myth rereads update (selections from all of the following):



40. Metamorphoses by Ovid trans. Stanley Lombardo (Myth course readings) - 10/10 = A+
An impressive compilation of myths, all under the rubric of change (something or someone undergoes a transformation of some kind in every story). A Roman take on Greek myths, Ovid puts his own special twist and sense of humor into every tale, weaves each story into the next and embeds stories within stories within stories seamlessly, all while using a Greek meter on a language not made for such things, and succeeding brilliantly. Always a wild and fun ride.



41. Iliad by Homer trans. Stanley Lombardo (Myth course readings) - 10/10 = A+
A story about rage and glory and the pettiness of gods and men, the tragic pointlessness of war, and the consequences of our choices. There are passages in here that give me goosebumps every time.



42. Odyssey by Homer trans. Stanley Lombardo (Myth course readings) - 10/10 = A+
An adventure of the highest quality, and a story about a man desperately trying to find his way home, a boy navigating the waters of adolescence and manhood without a father, the dangers of curiosity, the value of cunning, and the difficulty of coming home after being a soldier abroad. More goosebumps to be had, folks.



43. Aeneid by Vergil trans. Stanley Lombardo (Myth course readings) - 10/10 = A+
And if you think Homer is good, hoo boy, hold Vergil's wine cup. He sets out to pay tribute to Homer with a Roman version of both the Iliad and the Odyssey, written, as Ovid does, in a language which doesn't naturally fit the epic meter, and simply blows Homer right out of the water. A new kind of epic hero for a new empire, with nods to his Greek predecessors and a fascinatingly uneasy encomium to Augustus' New Rome.



44. The Histories by Herodotus trans. Aubrey de Sélincourt (Myth course readings) - 10/10 = A+
Father of History and Father of Lies, Herodotus knows how to party. By which I mean he writes history that reads like fantasy. Because, for the most part, it is. An absolute hoot every time.

22scaifea
feb. 27, 10:56am

>20 SirThomas: Thanks, Thomas! The cheesecake is in the oven and I'm just about to start on the bread. Sewing and reading coming up soon...

Happy weekend to you, too!

23MickyFine
feb. 27, 1:01pm

>18 scaifea: That sounds like so much fun! I read an excellent YA novel a couple years ago that had D&D as a major plot line, Chaotic Good. I think you'd love it and Charlie might enjoy too. Although if memory serves, it is a kissing book. ;)

24karenmarie
feb. 27, 1:30pm

Hi Amber, and happy new thread!

From your last thread: When my husband’s mother was going through her things prior to moving into an assisted living/24-7 care facility, she pretty much gave me free rein to take whatever I wanted. I only took a few things that she clearly wanted me to have that I thought hideous, and I was able to give one of them away to a friend of hers who loved it. Others are currently out-of-sight-out-of-mind, but I’ll eventually have to deal with them.

My favorites by Tom Lehrer are
The Vatican Rag – “first you get down on your knees, fiddle with your rosaries…”
The Elements – “there’s antimony, arsenic, aluminum, selenium…” for all elements known at the time, sung to "Modern Major-General" from Gilbert and Sullivan's Pirates of Penzance.
New Math – a problem in base 10 and then in base 8.
Pollution – “turn on your taps, and get hot and cold running crud”

>6 scaifea: The problem for me baking is that it is only the two of us, both overweight and not needing sweets at all. However, I have seriously started to think about scratch brownies since I don’t have enough ingredients on hand for a chocolate cheesecake.

25London_StJ
feb. 27, 1:44pm

The first thing I did this morning was watch the first episode of "The Watch," aaannnddd ... I loved it. What good, stylish fun. I have more than a little bit of a crush on Angua.

I am of the mindset that adaptation will always result in a new text. And, frankly, I think it makes better art. To that end, I'm glad that the show isn't trying to faithfully adapt a single book, and that the characters are likewise inspired-by rather than literally by-the-book.

I actually think I'm going to try to talk the whole family into watching it - I think the Horde would love it.

26Fourpawz2
feb. 27, 1:57pm

Hi Amber!

I got distracted by the cover at >21 scaifea: - getting lost in the pretty colors - and found myself thinking, for a couple of seconds, Oh, God, Amber's reading something about Covid and then realized it was a book by Ovid.

Dummy.

27scaifea
feb. 27, 2:05pm

>23 MickyFine: Oooh, that book sounds amazing! I think you're right that we'd both like it. Ordering it. Thanks, Micky!

28scaifea
feb. 27, 2:07pm

>24 karenmarie: Hi, Karen! I don't want to think about the hot mess that cleaning out either my parents' or my in-laws' houses are going to be. Both are big and full of stuff. *sigh*

Oh! I know the Elements song! I think I didn't know it was Lehrer, though. Cool.

Well, I have a Charlie to help with the baked goods, so that helps...

29figsfromthistle
feb. 27, 2:07pm

Happy new one!

30scaifea
feb. 27, 2:09pm

>25 London_StJ: OMG YAY!! I'm SO glad you like it! And YES to all your stuff about adaptations. Better art definitely. I'm Team Reader Response: every time someone engages with a text, both the text and the reader are changed.

Ditto to having a massive crush on Angua. Also Vimes for me. And Cheery, on whom Charlie is also totally crushed out.

31scaifea
feb. 27, 2:09pm

>26 Fourpawz2: Charlotte: *snork!* NOPE. Absolutely no Covid books for me. Most definitely too soon.

32PaulCranswick
feb. 27, 2:41pm

Happy new one, Amber.

33scaifea
feb. 27, 2:52pm

>32 PaulCranswick: Thanks, Paul.

34scaifea
Editat: feb. 27, 2:57pm

Okay, so.

The Bad News: I overbaked my cheesecake. Gah. I frequently do this. Am a dummy. It's edible, but not...fabulous.

The Good News: My Target order came today, which consists mostly of household staples, but also included this, and I am more excited than I probably have any right to be:



The Even Better News: Tomm has offered to go pick up pizza for dinner! Donato's, which is a Columbus local treasure, but I'm not sure how far spread the franchise is. It's pretty good stuff, and also, well, PIZZA.

35MickyFine
feb. 27, 4:07pm

Yay for pizza! We're making it from scratch at Chez Fine today.

I expect a full report on the hot chocolate. Lucky Charms is my sweet cereal of choice.

36London_StJ
feb. 27, 4:56pm

>30 scaifea: I want Cheery to be my BFF, and Vimes is a joy to watch.

37quondame
feb. 27, 5:05pm

Happy new thread!

>1 scaifea: Am I the only one that tea cup is glaring at? It's quite elegant but I wouldn't trust its mood.

38ChelleBearss
feb. 27, 5:12pm

Happy new thread!

My kids would go bonkers for that hot chocolate! Lucky Charms is a fave here which they don’t get very often

39scaifea
feb. 27, 5:48pm

>35 MickyFine: Woot for pizza!

The HoCho is amazing. Highly recommended. You get a separate little packet of the marshmallows to dump in.

40scaifea
feb. 27, 5:48pm

>36 London_StJ: I love it. I'm just in love with all three.

41scaifea
feb. 27, 5:49pm

>37 quondame: Thanks - I hadn't noticed anything malevolent about the cup.

42scaifea
feb. 27, 5:49pm

>38 ChelleBearss: Ha! Charlie isn't interested at all. It's aaallll for me.

43figsfromthistle
Editat: feb. 27, 6:34pm

>34 scaifea: That's neat! Ihave never seen those before.

44fairywings
feb. 27, 8:20pm

Happy new thread Amber. I like the tea cup pic.

45justchris
feb. 27, 8:52pm

You are racing along!

>18 scaifea: Sounds like great family fun!

>21 scaifea: Great takes!

Question: what translation would you recommend for Aristotle's Poetics?

46scaifea
feb. 27, 8:54pm

>43 figsfromthistle: I hadn't seen them before either! They may be fairly new on the market.

47scaifea
feb. 27, 8:55pm

>44 fairywings: Thanks, Adrienne! I love the colors in that photo.

48scaifea
feb. 27, 8:56pm

>45 justchris: Well, I'm afraid I don't have a good answer for you; I've only read Aristotle in the Greek. I'm not a fan and so I've never chosen to teach him, which means I've never had to find a translation to use for class and I've never wanted to revisit him in either language. Sorry! Best of luck - the Penguin Classics are usually a good bet, though.

49justchris
feb. 27, 9:07pm

>48 scaifea: Understood. Thanks for the prompt response. But wait, you don't worship at the altar of Aristotle??? /sarcasm

50scaifea
feb. 28, 8:10am

>38 ChelleBearss: You're welcome. And nope, ancient philosophy is very much not my jam.

51scaifea
feb. 28, 8:20am

Today's Agenda:

Another rainy day here, but I'm still okay with that, since our walk yesterday evening was dry and in near-50F weather. This morning I'll do my share of the house cleaning, finish up the Potato Bread (the dough rests in the fridge overnight), then head back down to the sewing room for part of the afternoon and then try to squeeze some reading in, too. Swedish Meatballs, mashed potatoes, and broccoli for dinner tonight.

Sewing-wise, I'm *still* working on piecing the quilt; last weekend I thought I was nearly finished with that part, only to realize that my dummy brain had been following the numbers for a smaller quilt size and I still have about half of the squares to go! I wondered why I had so much of each fabric left over. Yoicks. So yesterday I finished cutting out all the pieces and I'll get back to sewing the rest of the squares together today. This thing is taking FOREVER.

On the reading front:
Till We Have Faces is coming along - I'm pie-in-the-sky hoping that I can finish it today - and I'm still plugging along with My Sweet Orange Tree, too. I've only about 1/4 of that one left to go and I still haven't decided if I like it or not.

What We're Watching:
Charlie's pick last night and we finished up the first season of The Watch. Soooo good! We're definitely hoping they make more of that show.

52karenmarie
feb. 28, 9:26am

>34 scaifea: I personally kept Swiss Miss in business when my daughter was growing up – now I’ll occasionally make a cup of hot chocolate either from scratch or with some delicious mix I got from the company I get my multi-vitamins from. Enjoy! All of it, from what I see in >42 scaifea:.

We had pizza yesterday too, from a good local pizzeria. I was going to save half of my half of the pizza for dinner, but managed to polish it all off by 4 p.m. And then wasn’t really hungry for dinner, of course.

53MickyFine
Editat: feb. 28, 9:33am

>39 scaifea: That's awesome. I don't think this exists in Canada. The only hot chocolate that's typically on the shelf in the grocery store here is from Carnation. Of course, as a subdivision of Nestle it means you can get the chocolate bar flavoured ones - After Eight and Rolo hot chocolate are my faves.

Good luck with the sewing. I've passed the halfway point on the crochet blanket I'm making and I had fun browsing Ravelry yesterday for new project ideas.

54scaifea
feb. 28, 9:45am

>52 karenmarie: Karen: Swiss Miss is what my mom always used to buy when I was a kid, but then when I was in college she started sending me care packages with Land O Lakes mix, which is so, so good. I now prefer Godiva's HoCho mix, but I'm always up for a vintage Swiss Miss cuppa, too (which is what Charlie likes).

We always get the biggest size pizza possible so that we'll have plenty for dinner *and* for breakfast the next day. Heaven.

55scaifea
feb. 28, 9:46am

>53 MickyFine: Ooh, we can get Carnation here, too! It's been a long while, but I remember them being pretty good. The Rolo one sounds amazing.

Thanks for the sewing luck! I love that you wait until you're almost finished with one project before looking for the next. I have multiple projects going at once and then about 1000 that I want to do next. Yoicks.

56katiekrug
feb. 28, 9:57am

I'm a bit late to your new thread, Amber, but Happy New One!

We got takeaway for dinner, too, and TW opted for pizza. I got pasta. The best part of these nights is not having and pots and pans to clean...

Enjoy your rainy Sunday! It's overcast here, but no rain (yet).

57MickyFine
feb. 28, 10:13am

>55 scaifea: You give me a bit more credit than I deserve, Amber. I have one project in mind but the company I'm planning to order yarn from has free shipping if you spend X dollars so now I'm exploring extra projects to justify more yarn. ;)

58scaifea
feb. 28, 10:26am

>56 katiekrug: Hi, Katie! I saw your delicious dinner over on your thread and I admit I'm jealous - it sounds amazing!

59scaifea
feb. 28, 10:27am

>57 MickyFine: Micky: Ha! Oh, yes, that free shipping limit is so enabling.

60ChelleBearss
feb. 28, 11:19am

>53 MickyFine: I checked and that hot chocolate is available here on Amazon.ca .... for a whopping $17 for the 6pack box. I think I'll pass lol

61scaifea
feb. 28, 12:45pm

>60 ChelleBearss: Ooof, yeah, it's not quite *that* good...

62scaifea
feb. 28, 12:50pm

Well, the cheesecake was slightly less than wonderful, but the Potato Bread seems to have done alright:

63Fourpawz2
feb. 28, 1:00pm

Wow! That potato bread looks very fine indeed.

64RebaRelishesReading
feb. 28, 1:01pm

The potato bread looks wonderful!!

Swiss Miss is my absolute favorite hot chocolate but you can have my Lucky Charms or any other version of marshmallows.

65scaifea
feb. 28, 1:46pm

>63 Fourpawz2: Thanks, Charlotte! It tastes lovely. I've had a warm slice with butter just now and YUM.

66scaifea
feb. 28, 1:47pm

>64 RebaRelishesReading: Thanks, Reba! Rarely to my loaves come out looking quite that nice, even when they taste okay. I'm pleased.

I generally don't like marshmallows in my HoCho either, but I do love Lucky Charms. In general I prefer a dollop of frozen Cool Whip in mine.

67scaifea
Editat: feb. 28, 1:58pm



45. Till We Have Faces by C. S. Lewis (Green Dragon 1001 Fantasy Books) - 8/10 = B-
A Retelling of the Cupid and Psyche story through the point of view of one of the sisters, casting her in the light of a heroine (sort of), where she was a villain in the original. I went into this one excited at the prospect of such a retelling, but I'm afraid I'm a little disappointed. The general idea of revamping the sister into a more complex character is a good and interesting one, and there are some very cool passages in which the idea of how myth changes to suit the needs of the changer is grappled with. Two things kept me from really liking it, though: 1) the main character (the sister) isn't at all likable, and for this version of the story to work, the reader really needs to be rooting for her, which I just couldn't do; and 2) toward the end Lewis whips out his Let's Make This a Metaphor for the Christian God pen, and just, ugh. Nope. So, in the end, cool idea but it just doesn't quite work for me.

68PersephonesLibrary
feb. 28, 4:19pm

Happy new one, Amber! I am not participating much, but be assured that I lurk regularly - and not only for the nice treats! :)

69FAMeulstee
feb. 28, 5:39pm

Happy new thread, Amber!

>34 scaifea: >62 scaifea: Sorry about the overbaked cheescake, the potato bread looks great.

70scaifea
feb. 28, 6:09pm

>68 PersephonesLibrary: Thanks, Käthe! Lurk away - you're welcome anytime.

>69 FAMeulstee: Thanks, Anita! The cheesecake wasn't a complete loss, but yeah, the bread turned up much nicer. I'm looking forward to toast in the morning!

71brenzi
feb. 28, 9:04pm

>34 scaifea: Oh boy, Amber there's something my grandkids would love. I never knew such a product existed. Of course they don't know Lucky Charms exists lol.

72bell7
feb. 28, 10:35pm

Happy new thread, Amber!

Re: hot chocolate options, I don't really like marshmallows in mine, but I'll go with a Swiss Miss dark chocolate mix in hot milk, so it's nice and rich. Or homemade, but that's too much work, so only when my youngest sister's visiting my parents' and makes it.

73SandyAMcPherson
març 1, 12:23am

Hi Amber, I haven't kept up very well with your threads and it always ends up being a case of falling down a rabbit hole when I decide to read thoroughly!

>37 quondame: >41 scaifea: Yeah, I totally noticed that tea cup with slitted eyes threatening me... I thought what the heck, is it a secretly hidden demon? And is Amber testing us???

74ffortsa
març 1, 12:58am

Amber, have you read Ransom by Malouf? I just came across a discussion of it, and according to the discussion it is a retelling of the last book of the Iliad. I'd be interested to know what you think of it.

75false-knight
març 1, 6:21am

>21 scaifea: I love the Histories, Herodotus is just so weird so much of the time! And also I think the way he talks about Egypt is incredibly interesting.

>67 scaifea: Clive's Big Pen of Christian Apologetics is kind of why I'm not…ever going to read any more of his books.

Also, I gotta share:


That one got crunched 'n' munched by the upload but all her comics are so good…

76scaifea
març 1, 6:47am

>71 brenzi: Bonnie: Welp, that sounds like the perfect opportunity to be The Amazing Grandma Who Treats Us to Sugared-Up HoCho!

77scaifea
març 1, 6:48am

>72 bell7: Thanks, Mary!

Oh, well, it goes without saying that HoCho gets made with milk and not water, right? I mean, really.

And Charlie loves the dark chocolate version, too.

78scaifea
març 1, 6:49am

>73 SandyAMcPherson: Hi, Sandy!

I really don't see it. That tea cup means you no menace, folks. I think you may be hurting his feelings. Poor thing.

79scaifea
març 1, 6:49am

>74 ffortsa: I have not read that one, Judy, but it sounds amazing - thanks!

80scaifea
març 1, 6:52am

>75 false-knight: Herodotus is one of my favorite things. Thucydides is great and all (that Funeral Oration, I mean, DANG), but he's not the joy ride that Herodotus can be.

Yeah to Lewis. *sigh* I was a total Narnia kid, but as an adult I'm not really much of a fan of his Beat the Reader over the Head with Jesus stuff. I only read this one because 1) Psyche and 2) it's on a list.

And *snork!* I LOVE the comic! I've not heard of her before, so thank you for the link! She's amazing!

81scaifea
març 1, 6:58am

On the agenda for today, Monday, ew:
I've got a virtual stack of quizzes to grade, then I'll prep for class, keep an eye on Charlie's work, hold office hours, and teach. Tomm has a late meeting tonight, so it'll be just Charlie and I watching tv. We finished Queer Eye, and have moved on to Once Upon a Time, which is pretty enjoyable so far. Oh, and the Swedish Meatballs, although sort of a pain to make, were excellent last night (I'd never made them before).

Breakfast this morning was so, so good: potato bread toast with Kerrygold butter (thanks to Julia, I am a complete convert).

On the reading front:
After finishing the Lewis, I read a bit of Henna Wars and My Sweet Orange Tree. Still listening to The Moonstone, too.

What We're Watching:
Tomm's pick last night, so we finished the second Bourne movie (aka One Very Long Car Chase, Essentially - Ugh) and then started a cute and funny one starring Dave Bautista, My Spy. Surprisingly funny, really, for the genre.

82karenmarie
març 1, 9:08am

>65 scaifea: Your potato bread looks wonderful. And there are few things finer than a slice of freshly baked bread warm from the oven and with butter.

>80 scaifea: I never have finished Narnia, but I completed his Space Trilogy. I don't remember a single thing about it. Beat the Reader over the Head with Jesus stuff.

>81 scaifea: I overcame my cheap nature and bought Kerrygold yesterday and am looking forward to it on my toast this morning.

83scaifea
març 1, 9:25am

>82 karenmarie: Thanks, Karen! I agree about the warm fresh bread with butter - so comforting. It always makes me think of my childhood, feeling safe and loved and fed (my mom baked (and still bakes) bread frequently).

I keep meaning to do a reread of Narnia just to see if I still love it. I read the series over and over as a kid, so much so that my books fell apart and my uncle bought me a new set.

I hope you love your toast and butter breakfast - I sure enjoyed mine and Julia's right that I don't think I'll ever go back to other brands of butter now.

84karenmarie
març 1, 9:29am

Have you baked with it, Amber? If so, is the difference significant?

85scaifea
març 1, 9:30am

>84 karenmarie: Ooooh, I think the price is a little too steep to switch to it for my baking, especially since I do a lot of it. I can't imagine that it would make that much difference there, really, so I'll stick to generic-brand butter for that.

86katiekrug
març 1, 9:31am

Good morning, Amber!

Yay for another Kerrygold convert. I'm thinking I may need to have some rye toast this morning...

I keep trying to get The Wayne to make me Swedish meatballs because I love them so. And he's a quarter Swedish, so I figure he must be able to make them well :)

As a kid, I read The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and liked it, but never read the rest, despite having a boxed set of the Narnia books. I listened to them all a few years ago and got super annoyed at the religion-y stuff, which seemed to get less and less subtle as the books went on.

87scaifea
març 1, 9:38am

>86 katiekrug: Morning, Katie!

Oooh, rye - yum! I usually go for sourdough (which I think you don't like, right?), but since there's fresh potato bread...

Aw, come on, The Wayne. Make the meatballs!

I was not the most brightest kiddo, apparently because despite being raised in a Christian household, I did *not* get the references, even though, as you say, they're not...subtle. They will very likely annoy me now, if I reread them. *sigh*

88katiekrug
març 1, 9:46am

>87 scaifea: - No, I love sourdough! We don't often have it hanging around the house, though...

89rosalita
març 1, 9:47am

My local grocery store had a special on their in-house bakery's sourdough bread, so this morning's breakfast was toast made with sourdough and slathered with Kerrygold. So satisfying and delicious. I would have gladly traded it for some of that fresh-baked potato bread, though!

90scaifea
març 1, 9:47am

>88 katiekrug: Oh, weird. Someone in the group doesn't like sourdough, I think... Anyway, I think it makes excellent toast - and even better grilled cheese sandwiches.

91scaifea
març 1, 9:48am

>89 rosalita: Julia: YES! I buy the store bakery sourdough, too. The factory kind is generally unsatisfactory. And if I could, I'd drop off a loaf of the bread for you!

92lauralkeet
març 1, 12:29pm

I've been making my own sourdough bread since early pandemic, when my daughter gave me some of her starter. We don't eat a lot of bread, and it's been a good way to keep some on hand.

Okay, I have to ask: what makes Kerrygold butter better?

93MickyFine
març 1, 12:39pm

>81 scaifea: Oh Once Upon a Time. I love the first two seasons, season 3 is solid and then it starts to go downhill. I watched through to the end of season 6 when it was airing for my OTP but on my rewatch with Mr. Fine this past year I couldn't face watching season 6 again.

94scaifea
març 1, 12:51pm

>92 lauralkeet: I've never attempted starter breads. Maybe one day...

As for the butter, I'll refer you to the origins for my switching, Julia's thread: https://www.librarything.com/topic/329357#7432724

95scaifea
març 1, 12:51pm

>93 MickyFine: Laura said something similar about it going downhill. We'll see how it goes; if Charlie wants to keep watching, chances are we'll keep watching.

96MickyFine
març 1, 12:54pm

Well this gent is waiting for you come season 2. ;)

97lauralkeet
març 1, 1:07pm

>94 scaifea: Thanks Amber! I'll have to give Kerrygold a try because I do like buttered bread and toast. But like you I'll keep plain old butter around for cooking & baking.

98scaifea
març 1, 1:18pm

>96 MickyFine: Oooh, YES! I've seen him around the meme scene and cannot wait!

99scaifea
març 1, 1:18pm

>97 lauralkeet: You're welcome, Laura, although Julia deserves all the credit here.

100SandDune
març 1, 2:21pm

>92 lauralkeet: I have to ask: what makes Kerrygold butter better? Yes I was wondering the same thing. We have Kerrygold butter here (but it’s not the one I buy), but I’ve never come across anyone making a particular thing of it, whereas it does seem to be a ‘thing’ in the U.S.

101BekkaJo
març 1, 2:31pm

Query...have you watched Lucifer???

Apologies if I've misses.

102rosalita
març 1, 2:32pm

>100 SandDune: It's possible your regular UK butter is better than regular US butter, Rhian. Kerrygold and other European-style butters (as they are called here) are cultured, so slightly tangy, and have a higher butterfat content. This short article explains it as well as any, I think: https://www.thekitchn.com/whats-the-difference-between-european-and-american-but...

103scaifea
març 1, 2:37pm

>100 SandDune: >102 rosalita: Yep, what Julia said, Rhian.

104scaifea
març 1, 2:37pm

>101 BekkaJo: I have not, Bekka, but it's been on my list for some time. Eventually. Is it a favorite of yours?

105SandyAMcPherson
març 1, 2:57pm

>102 rosalita: Canada is having a Buttergate moment and about time too. The last few years' production have been just dreadful products (and I was SO spoiled by the fantastic butter we could buy in Amsterdam when we visited our family).

106rosalita
març 1, 3:00pm

>105 SandyAMcPherson: Yes, I wrote about that on my thread which sort of started the whole butter kerfuffle over here.

107scaifea
març 1, 3:11pm

>105 SandyAMcPherson: >106 rosalita: I'm sorry, Julia, I should have been more explicit up there (>94 scaifea: ) about the credit going to you (bold lettering, maybe). I didn't mean to move the conversation over here, really.

108leperdbunny
març 1, 3:20pm

109scaifea
març 1, 3:23pm

>108 leperdbunny: Thanks, Tamara! It *is* pretty tasty.

110rosalita
març 1, 3:53pm

>107 scaifea: No need to apologize! I'm happy to have the discussion here instead. :-)

111johnsimpson
març 1, 4:23pm

Happy new thread Amber my dear, i miss a couple of days and i find i am 110 posts behind, lol.

112scaifea
març 1, 4:57pm

>110 rosalita: Okay, whew! Maybe we should start a group: Sisterhood of the Imported Butter...Pants?

113scaifea
març 1, 4:58pm

>111 johnsimpson: Hi, John! Good to see you, friend.

114drneutron
març 1, 5:04pm

>112 scaifea: Butter pants. *sigh* Can't unsee that... 😂

115rosalita
març 1, 5:24pm

>112 scaifea: Perhaps, in deference to Jim's delicate sensibilities and overactive imagination, we should be the Sisterhood of the Imported Butter Dish?

:-)

116drneutron
març 1, 5:26pm

Well, at least butter pants have the advantage of not chafing.

117jjmcgaffey
març 1, 5:30pm

>84 karenmarie: I've been warned about baking with Plugras or similar butter (I think Kerrygold falls into that category) with standard American recipes; because they're expecting a certain water/fat ratio, you can get weird effects from the richer European butter. Sometimes maybe better results, but not what's expected.

>87 scaifea: I read Narnia as a kid and missed every reference; was told as a teenager that it was Christian allegory, reread it and oh yeah, there they are. It doesn't bother me, though, I still like the stories. I've never gotten into his other stuff, though I own a lot. I'll see if I can tolerate the preaching when I do get to them.

118quondame
març 1, 6:01pm

>75 false-knight: Those are fab!

119scaifea
març 1, 6:30pm

>114 drneutron: *SNORK!* *makes checkmark on list: Invade Jim's thoughts with disturbing image of butter trousers*

120scaifea
març 1, 6:30pm

>115 rosalita: Nope. It's pants or nothin' sister. Jim just needs to get comfortable with the idea.

121scaifea
març 1, 6:30pm

>116 drneutron: HAHAHAHA!!! I nearly did a spit take at that one!

122scaifea
març 1, 6:31pm

>117 jjmcgaffey: Oh, excellent point about the baking! I suspect that's right.

I think I probably will reread them someday, just to see. Maybe the sentimental value will outweigh the religion business.

123scaifea
març 1, 6:31pm

124rosalita
març 1, 6:56pm

>120 scaifea: OK then, count me in! Butter Pants it is!

125scaifea
març 1, 8:26pm

126quondame
Editat: març 2, 1:27am

Just saw this:

TETE NUMQUAM RELINQUAM/NEVER GONNA GIVE YOU UP (Rick Astley)(Waterman) (Trans. Kuhner)[1987]

Amoris sumus periti
Leges noscis necnon ego
Devotionem plenam intendo
Hanc non habebis ex ullo alio

[pons]
Communicare volo tibi quod sentio
Intelligendum tibi est

[chorus]
Tete numquam relinquam
tete numquam deseram
tibi ero desultor non numquam
Faciam non flere te
Nec dicam valere
mendax vulnerabo non numquam

Te cognovi tam diu
Cor tuum dolet, at timidior quin dicas
Intus nos ambo scimus quid fiat
Ludum callemus et nos ludemus

Et si rogas me quomodo sentiam
Ne dicas te tam caecam esse

Tete numquam relinquam
tete numquam deseram
tibi ero desultor non numquam
Faciam non flere te
Nec dicam valere
mendax vulnerabo non numquam

[pons]
Deseram deseram non numquam
Deseram deseram non numquam

Te cognovi tam diu
Cor tuum dolet, at timidior quin dicas
Intus nos ambo scimus quid fiat
Ludum callemus et nos ludemus

Communicare volo tibi quod sentio
Intelligendum tibi est

[chorus ad finem]

127sirfurboy
març 2, 6:03am

>126 quondame: LT needs a like button!

128scaifea
març 2, 6:44am

>126 quondame: Impressive that I made it to the chorus before finding a glaring grammatical error. I think that may be some kind of record for these kinds of "Let's translate modern stuff into Latin" things!

>127 sirfurboy: It's a cute idea, isn't it?

129scaifea
març 2, 6:50am

Today's Agenda:
More of the usual: course prep, supervising Charlie's school work, plus a trip to the library to pick up holds. Baked Potato Soup for dinner tonight, I think.

On the reading front:
I finished My Sweet Orange Tree last night and I'm *still* trying to figure out if I loved it or hated it. I suspect that means it's doing what it set out to do. Mini-review to come.

What We're Watching:
Tomm had that late meeting, so Charlie and I watched Chicken Little, which we hadn't seen in a long time, and a bit of Once Upon a Time.

130karenmarie
març 2, 9:07am

>112 scaifea: I’m in. I tried the Kerrygold on my toast yesterday and it was fabulous. I just might have used more butter than I normally would because it was so satisfying to spread. However, I hadn’t eaten buttered toast in several days so today will be an experiment – half grocery store butter and half Kerrygold.

>117 jjmcgaffey: I’ll keep on baking with grocery store butter. Thanks for the warning, Jennifer.

>129 scaifea: I just looked up recipes for Baked Potato Soup. I never have leftover baked potatoes. I want to make soup tonight, though, because it's gotten cold out again.

131scaifea
març 2, 9:10am

>130 karenmarie: Yay for delicious buttered toast! Julia be praised.

Oh, I don't use leftover baked potatoes for my soup (I mean, who *does* have those as leftovers?); it's more of a deconstructed baked potato, I guess? (Read: potato soup with cheese in.)

132scaifea
març 2, 10:21am



46. My Sweet Orange Tree by José Mauro de Vasconcelos (1001 Children's Books) - 9/10 = A
Zezé is a five-year-old boy living amidst poverty and in an abusive home. The adults in his life have convinced him that he's an evil child and doesn't get presents for Christmas because he isn't worthy of them in the eyes of Jesus. In truth, he's an incredibly intelligent child, creative and intuitive, and he longs for affection in a way that will break every reader's heart. His strength throughout all the hardships he faces keeps you rooting for him, but also makes the inevitable trauma that breaks his spirit that much more of a gut-punch. This is a bleak read, but it also has its beautiful moments and if you brave the bleakness, you'll be rewarded with getting to fall in love with Zezé's sweet but mischievous little soul.

133MickyFine
març 2, 10:58am

>129 scaifea: I read "supervising Charlie's school work" as "surviving" the first time. So I guess you know how my Tuesday is looking. ;)

134scaifea
març 2, 11:13am

>133 MickyFine: *snork!* Well, there *is* math in there, so surviving is not wholly inappropriate...

135connie53
març 2, 12:51pm

I'm not even gonna read any of the 134 posts! Happy New Thread, Amber.

136scaifea
març 2, 12:52pm

>135 connie53: Ha! No worries, Connie - it's good to see you regardless.

137LovingLit
març 2, 1:42pm

>21 scaifea: re: the Iliaid...A story about rage and glory and the pettiness of gods and men, the tragic pointlessness of war, and the consequences of our choices. There are passages in here that give me goosebumps every time.
Well, that gives me hope! If I ever get to reading it, will you assist we with interpretation??

>62 scaifea: bread bread bread! You have reminded me that I need to make some focaccia today. W is getting his braces tightened and he loves the soft warm focaccia on these days. And I love making it, so win/win.

138scaifea
març 2, 1:46pm

>137 LovingLit: YES! I would absolutely love to do a guided read with you, if you like! Any time.

And woot for focaccia! I love that stuff. I think I may need to make some soon, too. Your W and my Charlie are similar - Charlie is a bread lover through and through.

139SandDune
març 2, 2:40pm

>102 rosalita: >103 scaifea: Interesting! As I’ve said I’ve never particularly bought Kerrygold, but I think here it would be regarded as a good-quality brand, but not a premium brand. I tend to alternate between Tesco own-brand unsalted and Président unsalted, depending what mood I’m in.

140RebaRelishesReading
març 2, 2:56pm

Having been raised on "oleo", any butter is fine with me. (tip-toeing away hoping I can still be part of the group)

141scaifea
març 2, 3:01pm

>139 SandDune: Rhian: Simple things like how brands of grocery items vary from country to country fascinate me. How one thing can seem so exotic to some and ho-hum to others. Very cool.

>140 RebaRelishesReading: Aw, Reba, you're always part of the club! I grew up with margarine and only started using butter once I was in grad school. We still have a non-butter spread always in the fridge, too, but for my toast I really want actual butter. Pancakes and waffles and such - spread is just fine with me.

142rosalita
Editat: març 2, 3:07pm

>140 RebaRelishesReading: >141 scaifea: I am also a charter member of the "margarine only" childhood club. I still remember the first time I tasted real butter while at a "fancy" restaurant in college (in other words, you didn't order at the counter and bus your own table) and it was a revelation. I vowed that when I was a grownup I would always use real butter.

I'm not sure I've achieved grownup status yet, but I do only use butter now. :-)

143scaifea
Editat: març 2, 3:12pm

>142 rosalita: Julia: I have a similar story, but my first butter experience was at the fancy restaurant my date took me to for prom. Rose-shaped butter on fancy plates. And it tasted SO GOOD on the fancy pre-dinner bread! *sigh*

144rosalita
març 2, 3:12pm

>143 scaifea: **sigh**

(uh-oh, it's starting again)

145RebaRelishesReading
març 2, 3:25pm

>141 scaifea: >142 rosalita: >143 scaifea: My first butter experience was as a little girl and at an aunt's house--we were visiting in Indiana and she lived on a farm I think. Anyway, I'm convinced it was a little rancid because I remember thinking it was just awful!! Several years later I met proper butter and have never used anything else since.

146scaifea
març 2, 3:58pm

>144 rosalita: HAHAHA!!!

>145 RebaRelishesReading: Oooh, Indiana! But ick to rancid butter. Just...ew.

147karenmarie
març 2, 4:23pm

I don't ever remember using margarine when I was a kid. It was always butter. What still shocks me, after living in NC for 30 years is that the cubes of butter are short and squatty in California and long and skinny in North Carolina. And, joy of joys, the Kerrigold fits into my butter dish without having to halve it.

My high school best friend's step-father told us that when he was a kid margarine was white and they gave you a little packet of yellow coloring to mix into it. I seem to remember that everybody knew you couldn't afford butter, which was shameful to him.

148scaifea
març 2, 4:25pm

>146 scaifea: The packet of yellow coloring story sounds familiar - I suspect I've heard it from one of my parents before!

149scaifea
març 2, 4:26pm



47. Lord Foul's Bane by Stephen R. Donaldson (BSFA) - 2/10 = F
A man finds out that he has leprosy and then proceeds to act completely selfishly and horridly self-centeredly across two worlds and throughout the remainder of the novel. The main character has absolutely no redeeming qualities at all, and the story reads like bad D&D fic gone completely off the rails. The only way this book could hold any interest at all to me is if it's read as happening wholly in the MC's mind, and even then I don't think I can muster up enough bother to care. How this is considered a keystone of fantasy lit, I have absolutely no idea.

150rosalita
març 2, 4:32pm

>149 scaifea: Ooof. That doesn't even sound like one of those books that's so bad it's fun to write a scathing review — thanks for the heads-up!

151drneutron
març 2, 4:35pm

>149 scaifea: Yeah, I was never able to get past that scene at the beginning - you know the one, I'm sure.

152scaifea
març 2, 4:54pm

>150 rosalita: Ha! Yeah, I don't think you'd care for this one, Julia. It's definitely not the good kind of bad.

153scaifea
març 2, 4:54pm

>151 drneutron: Oooh, yeah. I know the one. Blech.

154quondame
març 2, 5:08pm

>149 scaifea: Perfectly accurate, but it was important because it wasn't the same old 70s and 80s retread fantasy and was saying something new. TC isn't near as bad as the men in The Gap, by a long shot as they have no doubt that they are abusing a real woman. The first book is almost an allegory for the denial stage of a fatal illness. And TC does develop, though I never got any sort of warm fuzzy from him.

155scaifea
Editat: març 2, 5:48pm

>154 quondame: It's very likely a result of having read the Gap Cycle when I was younger, but I loved it as much as I loathed this one.

ETA: You know, after more thought, I don't think it's because I was younger. I think The Gap Cycle is infinitely better. Yes, Angus is absolutely awful, but he's meant to be, obviously. By the time Donaldson gets to the Gap novels, he's figured out how to make a despicable character also fascinating where he completely fails in this earlier one. I'm not sure I see that it's all that groundbreaking either. I've read earlier fantasy and science fiction that deals with inner turmoil and does it better.

And with that I'm out. I am happy to chatter on about other books for days, but I disliked this one so much that, honestly, I don't want to talk about it anymore. Feel free to take the discussion to your own threads if you like, friends, and thanks for enduring my grumbling about it here.

156katiekrug
març 2, 9:20pm

>155 scaifea: - Grumble all you want! It's your thread.

157BekkaJo
març 3, 6:02am

I've missed and can't catch up - and whaaaa no butter and huh?

Sorry I grew up on a dairy farm. Can't get my head round that!

158scaifea
març 3, 6:53am

>157 BekkaJo: Ha! I grew up on a farm, too, which makes it extra weird (but by the time I came around they didn't have milk cows anymore, just beef ones). It was money, though, honestly, and the fact that we didn't have much of it. Margarine was cheaper. My early childhood best friend lived on the next farm over, and that one *was* a dairy farm!

159scaifea
març 3, 6:53am

>156 katiekrug: Thanks, Katie! *fistbump*

160scaifea
març 3, 6:57am

Today's agenda:
It's a teaching day, so I'll prep for class, watch over Charlie's work, hold office hours, and then class. Charlie and I will have to figure out how to sneak out of the house for our mid-morning walk without Mario - she's been limping that last couple of days and we want her to rest up and hopefully the limp will heal itself. Fingers crossed there's nothing more wrong than some sort of light sprain? *sigh*

On the reading front:
I spent some time with Memoirs of a Geisha yesterday, which I'm really enjoying, and I also read through another middle grade book - mini-review to come.

What We're Watching:
A bit of Once Upon a Time and two Gilmore Girls episodes last night.

161rosalita
març 3, 7:40am

Aw, get well soon, Mario! Maybe she slept on it wrong — that's usually what happens to me but not sure it's really an issue for doggos considering the weirdo positions they manage to contort themselves into. :-)

162msf59
març 3, 7:52am

Morning, Amber! Happy Wednesday. I hope the week is skipping along for you. I have started a walking regiment. I am not getting enough exercise with just my birding. That might come later, when the weather really takes a turn.

163scaifea
març 3, 9:12am

>161 rosalita: Thanks, Julia! I'm hoping it's something like a sleeping injury (she certainly does enough of it for that to be a possibility) and not something more serious.

164scaifea
març 3, 9:13am

>162 msf59: Morning, Mark! We definitely enjoy our mid-morning and evening walks here - it's done a lot to keep up sane this past year.

165scaifea
Editat: març 3, 9:19am

We're starting our discussion of The Iliad in myth class today, so I give you this in celebration:


166scaifea
març 3, 1:04pm



48. Manolito Four Eyes by Elvira Lindo (1001 Children's Books) - 7/10 = C
Chronicles the adventures of a boy living in Madrid with a cast that includes school his friends, his little brother, and his eccentric grandpa. This one didn't really work for me. I suspect that it's a difficult thing for an author writing from the 1st person POV of a child to find just the right balance between sounding too precocious and turning kid dialect into a poor caricature. I'm afraid Lindo misses the mark here for me and veers way too far into caricature land, although to be fair, it could be a matter of cultural difference or a not-great translation. At any rate, it won't make any of my Favorites lists.

167jnwelch
març 3, 1:30pm

Holy Guacamole, we got sidelined by the second covid shot, and I fell way behind on your thread, Amber.

I love those Stanley Lombardo covers for The Iliad and The Odyssey, and, of course, the books themselves. I've read parts of The Aeneid, but never got swept up in it. I didn't realize there's a Stanley Lombardo translation of it, and I'm sure that'll help.

I like your questions for The Iliad. Good point about Agamemnon stealing Achilles' girl.

Good for you for re-reading The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. I'm reading one now called The Left-handed Booksellers of London, and it's reminded me more than once of that series - I've got to believe deliberately in a couple of instances, as the Narnia series is referenced along with Tolkien and others.

168scaifea
març 3, 1:33pm

>167 jnwelch: Hi, Joe! No worries about falling behind.

You know how I feel about Lombardo, so of course I day give his Aeneid a go. It's excellent.

I think those Iliad questions are pretty hilarious, mostly because they're all spot on.

And I haven't started a re-read of Narnia yet, but I'm seriously thinking about it.

169PersephonesLibrary
març 3, 1:35pm

Can we make a Classics Class on Zoom? Or can we switch in on your course, Amber? I really miss thoroughly working on and about texts.

170scaifea
març 3, 1:41pm

>169 PersephonesLibrary: Ha! I'd love to have you in my class! I'll definitely have to start a group read of something soon.

171PersephonesLibrary
març 3, 1:57pm

Imagine a class with LThingers. 😊 We would all be so exemplary.

172scaifea
març 3, 2:22pm

>171 PersephonesLibrary: I don't know - I think some of us would be rascals...

173MickyFine
març 3, 3:31pm

>172 scaifea: *puts down snowball* What do you mean rascals? ;)

>165 scaifea: The question about Achilles and Patroclus made me laugh really hard.

>160 scaifea: How did the sneaking out without Mario go? Did she catch you and give you the Sad Dog face?

174scaifea
març 3, 4:54pm

>173 MickyFine: Micky: Ha! SEE?! I knew it!

And YES to the Achilles/Patroclus bit! So funny. I also love the Diomedes part, too, because, well, same.

We were successfully sneaky! It helps that Mario is fairly clueless most of the time, the big lovable goof.

175figsfromthistle
març 3, 8:47pm

Catching up here.

>165 scaifea: Those are great questions. I can imagine that your students had plenty of thoughts and lively discussions.

176BekkaJo
març 4, 3:04am

>158 scaifea: It's so interesting working out the peaks and flows (I know, it's a mixed sentence) of food distribution. On island it's the meat that's expensive - especially beef and lamb. We have them really very rarely due ot the cost. But in return I find it hard to understand that parts of America never really get fresh milk as all the cattle are for beef. We're so lucky here to have a diverse range available - but it does annoy sometimes that both meat and fruit/veg are twice the price they are in the UK!

Sorry - that was a slightly weird waffle...

>165 scaifea: Excellent! I was listening to Natalie Haynes Stands up for the Classics last night - actually the podcast re the Illiad. Love it.

177scaifea
març 4, 7:00am

>175 figsfromthistle: Hi, Anita! We didn't actually discuss most of those questions, and in fact I won't show them that meme until Monday when they've read more of the Iliad. We did spend time yesterday talking about glory vs. cruelty, though. I just love the "questions I have" section because, same.

But it was a good discussion - it took this group a couple of weeks to get comfortable, but now they're relaxing into it and have opened up more, so the discussions are definitely lively and fun.

178scaifea
Editat: març 4, 7:10am

>176 BekkaJo: Oh, I agree, Bekka, that the prices and availability of various grocery items is completely ineffable but pretty interesting. And then things like my beloved Cherry Coke Zero haven't been available for yonks because, in this case, there's an aluminum shortage? But other people still get their crappy Diet Coke?! I mean where is the sense and/or justice in that?!

It's cool that you were listening to an Iliad postcast! Although there are so many classics podcasts these days and I do wonder about the people who do them and their credentials - how much are they getting wrong? A quick google tells me yours at least seems to bring on classicists occasionally as a resource, so that's good.

179scaifea
març 4, 7:09am

Today's Agenda:
Same, same: Helping Charlie if he needs it, prepping for my classes, menu planning and grocery ordering for tomorrow's pick-up time, maybe some non-work-related reading this afternoon.

On the reading front:
I usually don't get any reading done on teaching days, but it was DC Night last night, so after class I was able to change into my pajamas and climb into bed with a couple of books, Ready Player Two and Cursed. I'm still chipping away at The Moonstone, too.

180katiekrug
març 4, 7:14am

Morning, Amber!

Susan, who used to be in the 75ers but has now set up over in the ROOTS challenge, just favorably reviewed Pandora's Jar by Natalie Haynes, which sounds really good. And thanks to you, I knew to approve of the use of "jar" rather than "box" :)

181scaifea
març 4, 7:56am

>180 katiekrug: Morning, Katie!

Apparently Haynes read Classics as an undergrad, so I would hope that she'd know the difference between jar and box!

182London_StJ
març 4, 8:13am

>165 scaifea: Lololol, I love it. I know it's meant as a joke, but I love real responses to lit.

I'm in the middle of Frankenstein unit and it's going over rather well. We're a couple of days into our final text - Frankenstein in Baghdad - and yesterday I assigned the paper, including a creative writing option. Why not put into practice the concepts we're talking about, eh? No fewer than five students stayed after class to share their story ideas and enthusiasm, and my heart soared. I love it.

>178 scaifea: I'm going through this same soda trial, only with Fresca (yeah, yeah, but I like my old lady soda...).

183scaifea
març 4, 8:36am

>182 London_StJ: Yay for your class going so well! It's a good feeling, isn't it? My myth students are both writing a paper and doing a more creative and open assignment as well and I can't wait to see what they come up with for both.

I haven't had a Fresca in a long time, but I do love it. Who gets to decide which sodas they're stopping production for and where do I complain?!

184justchris
març 4, 9:55am

>149 scaifea: Thank you for vindicating my ongoing determination not to touch those books. My time is valuable.

>177 scaifea: Like you, I loved the Narnia books as a kid, and the religious stuff flew completely over my head. Had the boxed set through my childhood (though the box fell apart pretty quickly). I was shocked, Shocked!, when my high school humanities teacher mentioned that. Went back and looked, sure enough!

>82 karenmarie: OMG! The space trilogy is just so much dreck. I found the translation scene in Out of the Silent Planet hilariously well done in an otherwise meh story. And found the sequels increasingly awful. By the third book, he gave up any pretense of plot or dialogue and went on for pages of Christian exposition. Yikes.

I did find The Screwtape Letters an interesting enough conceit to keep the books. Not a fan of all the apologism, though. So I don't need to read any more C.S. Lewis ever.

>165 scaifea: Those are great questions! I frankly can't remember anything from freshman Hum where The Iliad was required reading, followed by Herodotus and others. I don't really remember digging into the text and meanings at all. Just left with the sense that Hum discussion sections taught me the fine art of bullshit. Partly, it was because I grew so frustrated with reading only excerpts of works instead of the whole thing once we finished The Iliad.

>183 scaifea: I probably would have loved those sorts of assignments. #undergradregrets

185scaifea
març 4, 10:00am

>184 justchris: Oh yoicks, it sounds like your first year course was absolute crap. I'm sorry you didn't have a better experience - it bothers me no end when bad teachers ruin wonderful texts and authors for their students.

186justchris
març 4, 10:10am

>185 scaifea: Well, it was kinda the whole premise that didn't work for me. We had lectures 3 times a week, with a rotating cast of professors covering their pet topics and none of them seeming to connect much to the reading. A friend of mine characterized the lectures as the faculty showing off to each other. And then the weekly discussion sections as mentioned above. And homework was entirely essays on topics that I was supremely indifferent to, so I was always trying to figure out which one would be the least bad to put the effort into. I was so checked out that by the time we got to the medieval era in the second semester (which was my true love), I just didn't care and didn't turn around my disinvestment in the course.

I was effectively a first-gen college student, at least in terms of liberal arts, who grew up in poverty. So I really didn't know what I didn't know and had learned to survive the system not work it. It never occurred to me that I could propose my own essay topic until the last paper of the second semester just a couple days before it was due, and by then it was too late. I succeeded in college, but I didn't thrive, and I certainly didn't get the most out of it. It was a lifechanging experience in so many ways, though.

187scaifea
març 4, 10:34am

>186 justchris: That's really too bad.

I was also a first generation student and grew up as a farmer's daughter in a very-much-not-wealthy family. But I took to college like a fish to the wet stuff. I did have, though, the most supportive and wonderful parents (still do, in fact), who had told me from the beginning that I could do anything I wanted if I set my mind to it. For me, that was everything, and I wouldn't have succeeded at all without it.

188scaifea
març 4, 11:46am

So this week's Bonus Question for my Latin students was, "What was your favorite childhood toy?" They gave some pretty fun and interesting answers: only two of them mentioned video games, and my favorite answer was "that really cool stick I found one time that was a sword, lightsaber, bow, and wizard's staff, depending on my imagination needs."

So, I'd love to know your answers: What was your favorite childhood toy?

189laytonwoman3rd
març 4, 12:02pm

>188 scaifea: I really think my favorite "toy" as a child was a swing. Or a book. Or both at the same time.

190RBeffa
març 4, 12:07pm

>149 scaifea: I actually read the first three books of this series when they were newish. I didn't like a one of them and I think it put me off of fantasy for many years. This bookseller I frequented at the time strongly recommended them to me. The popularity of these books has puzzled me. I also read the first Shannara book around the same time which didn't help.

191scaifea
març 4, 12:07pm

>189 laytonwoman3rd: Oh I loved my swing, too, Linda. I also had a tire swing, and I loved that thing. I could never swing and read at the same time, though; every time I tried, I'd get motion sickness. So frustrating.

192scaifea
març 4, 12:09pm

>190 RBeffa: I'm sorry it ruined fantasy for you for so long, Ron. I've not read any of the Shannara books, I don't think; maybe I should avoid those, then...

193katiekrug
març 4, 12:31pm

Favorite childhood toy: I had a long love affair with Barbies, to be honest. I had a very elaborate set-up in our basement, and very elaborate story lines going. My father said something snide about it once and I clearly remember my mother responding, "Ann (my older sister) writes her stories down. Katie acts hers out." My mom always "got" me :)

But Barbies aside, I'd say my bike was a favorite. Is that a toy? I also had a pogo stick which I was terrible at but loooooved trying to master. Soooooo many skinned knees from falling off that thing!

194RebaRelishesReading
març 4, 12:40pm

Do you younger people know how lucky you were to live in the age of Ken? I had dolls that were similar to Barbie but there were no boy dolls. My poor girls had to go to the "prom" with a stuffed monkey I had who was more or less their height and fairly upright lol. A few years later Barbie came along and right after that there was Ken...sigh

As for toys, the only things that ever really interested me were books...and dolls...and books.

195curioussquared
març 4, 12:41pm

>193 katiekrug: I was thinking Barbies, too. I'd spend hours setting up the scenes and putting all the houses and items in their places. My little brother is five years younger than me, so just young enough that he was willing to play anything with me as long as I let him in on it, but I would drive him crazy making him wait to actually play with the dolls while I perfected the set-up.

196scaifea
març 4, 12:43pm

>193 katiekrug: Katie: Ha! Same! I had elaborate stories with my Barbies, too, but to be fair, I did the same with my brothers' matchbox cars, too...

Of course bikes count! I spent so many hours on mine, too. We had an old pogo stick, but I was always too chicken about the possibly knee scrapes to try it.

197scaifea
març 4, 12:44pm

>194 RebaRelishesReading: Reba: Oh, Ken was no prize, believe me. I never liked that guy. I used to match my Barbies up with my brothers' old Planet of the Apes dolls, which was hilarious on several levels, including the fact that the ape dolls were about half the height of the Barbies.

198scaifea
març 4, 12:44pm

>195 curioussquared: Ha! I love that story! Precision is sometimes key to great imagination stories, right?

199jnwelch
març 4, 12:49pm

Hi, Amber.

Would you be re-reading Narnia with Charlie? That could be really great if he hasn't read them yet.

What do you think of Ready Player Two so far?

Favorite toy: the one I remember best is a stuffed Huckleberry Hound from the (very) old tv show. I could always make my older sister laugh by dancing with him.

200connie53
març 4, 12:54pm

My granddaughters discovered the boxes with Barbie stuff a year or so ago, when they were still visiting and staying overnight. They did belong to our daughter Eveline and she did not take them with her when she moved to another city for her study. So now Fiene and Lonne can play with an old version of Barbie and Ken. I personally had a Midge and several cheaper versions of Barbie.

201rosalita
març 4, 1:13pm

I never had actual Barbies, but I did have a Barbie head that you could play cosmetologist with. You could style the hair and apply "makeup" to the face. This picture I found on the Internet looks about right, down to the "Sunday morning hangover" hairstyle she has.

202scaifea
març 4, 1:27pm

>199 jnwelch: Hi, Joe!

We actually read the first Narnia book aloud together a few years ago, but we've yet to continue with the series, so I guess I've already started my adult re-read and just forgot until you reminded me!

RP2 is...okay so far. The writing seems a little clunky, but I'm not too far in yet and I'm hoping that once the action really starts the writing will find its rhythm or I'll get involved enough in the story that I won't care. We'll see. I really want to like this one because I loved the first one so much. Plus, it's set in Columbus and specifically NE of Columbus, which is right where we are!

Aw Huckleberry Hound! Love it.

203scaifea
març 4, 1:29pm

>200 connie53: I love that your granddaughters get to play with their mom's Barbies! That's so sweet. I had a Midge, too! And a knock-off Barbie called Darci.

204scaifea
març 4, 1:29pm

>201 rosalita:

"Sunday morning hangover" hairstyle *SNORK!* Her face sort of matches the mood, too...

205curioussquared
març 4, 1:38pm

>200 connie53: >203 scaifea: My mom was one of three sisters and I was the only girl grandchild for 18 years, so I got ALL the 60s and 70s Barbie gear. It was awesome. The vintage Barbie clothes are so cool and I love that Barbie used to wear colors that weren't pink. I also had a positively amazing orange camper van. I think it was this one: https://www.todays-woman.net/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/b6f241e47e94fc0fdbe6ee86...

I think we kept all the Barbie stuff in the family, too, so they're probably with my little 10-year-old cousin now and will go to my 3-year-old cousin soon.

206scaifea
març 4, 1:42pm

>205 curioussquared: That is so cool! And yeah, it's it funny-not-funny how color schemes used to be unisex, but now all girl toys are pink pink pink?! Yoicks.

207quondame
març 4, 1:43pm

>188 scaifea: My mother's charm bracelet. My grandfather had attached the miniatures my dad got mostly from his maternal uncle and they were very detailed and some of them worked - wrench, hammer, scissors, straight razor, saw, banjo, drum, saxophone, candlestick telephone.

208lauralkeet
març 4, 2:53pm

>194 RebaRelishesReading: My poor girls had to go to the "prom" with a stuffed monkey
Sounds a bit like my prom date ...

>201 rosalita: I never had one of those Barbie heads but I thought they were cool.

I wasn't super into Barbies, but I had a couple of them and a Skipper doll. No Ken dolls, but my brother had GI Joes so they could stand in.

BUT ... my favorite childhood toy was a store, a gift when I was about 5 or 6. It was a sort of tabletop thing with shelves and lots of miniature food, canned goods, and tiny bags. We lived in Germany at the time, so it was a solid, well-made wooden structure. I loved organizing the products on the shelves and "running" the store aka bossing my brother around and making him "buy" stuff.

209scaifea
març 4, 2:54pm

>207 quondame: Aw, that sounds lovely.

210scaifea
març 4, 2:58pm

>208 lauralkeet: Laura: Sounds a bit like my prom date ... *SNORK!!*

Skipper! That's who it was, not Midge. (Now I realize I don't know who Midge is...)

And I played with my brothers' GI Joe's too! The original, taller ones. And they had a couple of the huge jeeps and a whole army base, too. Very cool, and probably work a mint now.

Your store sounds *amazing*! Playing store was one of my very favorite things; my mom taught me math when I was three or four buy teaching me how to make change in our pretend store, with my toy cash register and real money. Such good memories, plus by the time I was 5, I could count back change with the best of them. Aaaaand that's the extent, pretty much, of my math knowledge.

211MickyFine
març 4, 3:06pm

Add me to those whose Barbies were their fave toys. However, my favourite bedtime stuffy was a little otter whom I loved so much that I wore off the felt that covered his plastic nose.

212scaifea
març 4, 3:09pm

>211 MickyFine: Aw, that's adorable, Micky!

213lauralkeet
març 4, 3:09pm

>210 scaifea: making change! I don't remember learning math with my play store. But when I was in high school I worked at Wendy's and my early "store" skills led to a love of working the register. I remember the first time somebody paid for their meal in a way that "optimized" the change they would receive. Example: meal costs $5.05. Pay with $10.05, get a $5 bill back. I was mathematically inclined but this still threw me. Why are they giving me that nickel?! After my shift, my engineer dad gave me a short lesson in how how to quickly calculate the change in my head. I should mention this was before stores had registers that did the math for you.

214PersephonesLibrary
març 4, 3:32pm

>189 laytonwoman3rd: I thought for a while about the question - and I second that. I still love to swing (when nobody's watching) and books... well.

Growing up with older brothers I was in the great situation to have match-box cars and barbies, legos and perier beads. I really enjoyed that mixture.

215swynn
Editat: març 4, 3:34pm

>188 scaifea: Glow-in-the-dark space sword. Man, I still miss that sometimes.

216quondame
març 4, 3:44pm

>208 lauralkeet: Due to my fascination with dolls and miniatures I've run across version of what you describe on eBay going for quite steep prices. Our versions were plastic and paper, but I loved playing with them.

217laytonwoman3rd
març 4, 3:50pm

>210 scaifea: Midge was Barbie's best friend; Skipper was her little sister. I had one of each, and Ken too. My brother's GI Joe was Ken's best friend, at least in my world, although by the time my brother was old enough for GI Joe, my Barbie days were winding down.

>208 lauralkeet: My dad called the guy I dated in high school (and therefore MY prom date) "the big ox"... Well, compared to me (a delicate blossom, as we know) he was a rather large creature, but fairly graceful on the dance floor.

218scaifea
març 4, 4:03pm

>213 lauralkeet: Oh, yes, the optimized change thing! When I was in high school and helping out with the band's ice cream stand at the fair, everyone else in the booth was so blown away that I could make change so easily, including those kinds of transactions. It was just second nature to me, thanks to my mom. And the customers of a certain age were *very* impressed that I always took the time to count the change back to them, counting up to the amount they gave me.

219scaifea
març 4, 4:03pm

>214 PersephonesLibrary: Older brothers are good for *some* things, although the relentless teasing was a high price to pay, I have to say.

220scaifea
març 4, 4:04pm

>215 swynn: Stephen: Ooooh, cool!

221scaifea
març 4, 4:04pm

>216 quondame: Yeah, I bet they *are* expensive on ebay.

222scaifea
març 4, 4:05pm

>217 laytonwoman3rd: Aha! Thanks for straightening me out, Linda.

I went to three proms and my dad hated every one of my dates. Because of course he did.

223PersephonesLibrary
març 4, 4:07pm

>219 scaifea: My motto as the youngest was "Divide et impera". ;-)

224ffortsa
març 4, 4:34pm

I was struggling to figure out what my favorite toy was when I was young (lo those many, many years ago), and I finally remembered Tinker Toys, the precursor to Legos. Interchangeable sticks and linking blocks and rounds. I don't recall if there were any movable parts (think erector sets), but I did love to build with them. Also Lincoln Logs. I wasn't particularly a doll person after about the age of 5.

225FAMeulstee
març 4, 4:57pm

Barbies were not allowed in our household, my mother had something against them (the visible breasts I think). I got a Barbie from a friend, who knew this, on my 40th birthday :-)

My favorite toy was a white stuffed elephant, I still have it. He had a lot of hair, almost bald now because of years of intense cuddling and hugging.
I also loved Lego, and of course books.

226scaifea
març 4, 5:57pm

227scaifea
març 4, 6:01pm

>224 ffortsa: Oh no. Tinker Toys. I have an actual childhood trauma associated with those:

One of my brothers and I were playing with his tinker toys one day (well, he was building something and I was three an really just sitting there watching him) and I put one of the sticks in my mouth. He told me to stop and I didn't and he told me to stop again and I didn't, and finally he reached over to pull it out of my mouth, lost his balance, and accidentally shoved it farther in. It cut open the roof of my mouth (I have a scar to this day), and that's the first memory of real actual lighting-like pain I have. I remember my mom giving me a glass of water to try to rinse the blood out and when I put the glass back down on the table, the water was solid red.

(I LOVED Lincoln Logs, though, and so did Charlie when he was younger. He has a nice, big set of them with a lovely wooden case - a gift from the grandparents.)

228scaifea
març 4, 6:04pm

>225 FAMeulstee: Aw, I love that you finally got a Barbie doll!!

And your elephant sounds lovely.

229jjmcgaffey
març 4, 7:51pm

>201 rosalita: We had that Barbie head too! There were wires running through her hair so it would really hold a curl.

We (my sisters and I) had lots of Barbies and other dolls, but mostly we abused them. Well, I abused them. I remember one time giving my Barbie a bikini with some soft tar I found on the roof, for instance.

I had - still have - a little grey plastic horse that was the first thing I ever bought, on my own (well, OK, that wasn't candy). A kid in my school was moving and had a going-away sale, and I bought the horse with my own money, as my own idea. It had originally been covered in "fur", but by the time I got it most of the fur had peeled off - I peeled the rest off. And he had had two black plastic eyes and I think I lost one (maybe it was already lost) and I replaced it with a bead of welding material I found after the contractors had been...and it rusted and he has one black eye and one orange weepy eye. But I still have him, and still love him.

Lots of memories - tinkertoys, and Barbies and other dolls, and so on - but if books count I think that's the winner. I had over a thousand books when I was 11. I had to count them for inventory, but it was too much trouble, so I measured a foot of bookcase and counted the books in it, then measured another foot with thicker books in it, averaged those two together, measured how many feet of bookshelf I had and came up with 1000 books. And a few years later d**n near failed both high school and college math courses...sheesh.

230scaifea
març 4, 8:44pm

>229 jjmcgaffey: I *love* your little grey horse story! That's adorable.

1000 books! WOW! I would have been so jealous of you. We simply didn't have the money for such luxuries when I was little, so I took full advantage of the school library from Day One.

231SandyAMcPherson
Editat: març 5, 12:08am

>132 scaifea: Thanks for the warning (I clicked the spoiler) and I'm not taking a BB.
I want happy endings these days, not bleak trauma. Thus it goes, you are a strong person, Amber.

Edited to say that I had to ask about the Jar versus Box nomenclature (over on Susan's ROOTS thread).

232false-knight
març 5, 12:05am

When I was a kid my favorite toys were some Calico Critters dolls I had—they're little anthropomorphic animals with generally-movable arms and legs. For years I used extra space on the bookshelves in my room as "dollhouses" and schools and so forth for them and would make furniture for them from household detritus and generally involve them in long complicated dramas that about once a month ended up with some kind of global flood-type cataclysm (I also had a Noah's Ark I made out of a shoebox from the one time my Sunday school program covered anything from the Bible), and during Christmas I would put a couple of them in the Christmas tree to get involved in the protracted battles I made the Christmas ornaments fight. (Some of those ornaments should probably end up counting as favorite toys, TBH.)

Ooh, also, Käthe's comment reminded me, we didn't have perler beads at home but my parents had to put us in ESS (extended school services; basically a school-adjacent program for kids who couldn't get picked up or sent home right when elementary school ended) and sometimes they'd do perler beads and that was always the best day.

Also books; I'm sure my parents were relieved when I switched my major obsession over to Animorphs from Warrior Cats, because we got Animorphs books for free from my uncle who bought them from thrift stores. My little brother technically has custody of them now, though they're in our parents' garage, and I keep telling him that wherever he moves next he needs to take them there and display them, because they will attract only the highest caliber of people.

233PaulCranswick
març 5, 3:20am

My brother and I used to collect football cards and then envisage whole soccer seasons with our players on the cards to the fore. Our real "toys" were footballs and cricket bats and tennis racquets and we were both crazy about sports.

I also collected leather bookmarks (what a surprise!).

234connie53
març 5, 3:47am

>205 curioussquared: That camper is still upstairs in the sleep-over room as is the cabriolet. They are both a bit damaged but the girls don't mind.

235BekkaJo
març 5, 4:05am

Trolls! I had a whole family and we made a house for them in a big old wooden bookcase. My sister made them a whole three piece lounge set out of scraps of fabric. And we made crockery out of fimo (oven hardening clay stuff).

Then one day my sister gave them hair cuts...

236jayde1599
març 5, 6:36am

I think my favorite toy was My Little Pony - the 80’s version. My mom saved them and passed them down to my niece and now my daughter.
Barbie was a close second followed by bikes and of course books. My mom inherited all of her and her sisters’ childhood books. That was a really fun summer as a tween reading her chapter books. And my mom could not say no to buying a book - if there was extra money in the budget. We had a library card early but rarely went - she never gave an explanation. It wasn’t until I got my driver’s license that I became a frequent public library visitor.

237sirfurboy
març 5, 7:00am

>188 scaifea: I was asked whether I wanted "What was your favourite childhood toy" as a security question for something yesterday. I declined to provide an answer because I doubt very much I could settle on any one toy. Maybe a favourite at a certain age. At age 8 that would work (cuddly koala) or age 7 (doll's house) (Yes really! My grandad made it for me and it had working electric lights). But there is no standout above all the rest.

238scaifea
març 5, 7:05am

>231 SandyAMcPherson: Sandy: Yeah, it's a rough read in many respects, so probably not appropriate for a lot of people right now. I'm surprised that I made it through, really, because in general I'm not up for that either right now. I think the beauty in other areas is what kept me going.

I had a peak over at Susan's thread, and she's halfway right. It probably did end up being translated as "box" at some point just to make it more...modern? I guess? But it really does make a difference and it's *not* a box she has. It's important to the underlying meaning of the story that it's a jar. I won't burden you with the details just now, but if you're interested let me now and I'd be happy to expand on it.

239scaifea
març 5, 7:09am

>232 false-knight: Emery: I think kid-you and my Charlie would have been the very best of friends: he *loves* Calico Critters and also seems to have elaborate story dramas going on with them. And he's a perler bead fan, too.

I remember when I was volunteering in Charlie's school library that we just couldn't keep the Warrior Cats on the shelves, they were so popular, and the Animorphs, too. There was a war in my brain every day when I'd be reshelving and also resorting them back into their proper order on the shelves between Yay kids are reading! and OMG I JUST FIXED ALL THIS YESTERDAY WHY WON'T THEY STOP TOUCHING THE BOOKS?!

240scaifea
març 5, 7:10am

>233 PaulCranswick: Paul: Aw, sports kiddos! I...have not experiences with those. Mine is demonstrably not, not was my husband. I love the leather bookmark idea, though! Very kid-posh.

241scaifea
març 5, 7:11am

>234 connie53: I love that so much, Connie! Recycling toys through the generations, and it's the really good toys that every generation loves.

242scaifea
març 5, 7:12am

>235 BekkaJo: Bekka: Ha! Troll haircuts! That's hilarious. I never jumped on the troll bandwagon, but I *did* have a pretty good collection of Strawberry Shortcake dolls. The Purple Pie Man was my favorite, and I'm not sure what that says about me...

243scaifea
març 5, 7:13am

>236 jayde1599: Oh gosh, I had some My Little Pony dolls, too! Very cool that you still have them around!

244scaifea
març 5, 7:16am

>237 sirfurboy: Oh gosh, I didn't think about it as a security question - I hope I haven't jeopardized everyone's identities not... Apologies, all!

One of my brothers made me a gorgeous dollhouse (my siblings are all lots older than I am and when I was at the age to play with dollhouses, he was already a grown adult and a very good carpenter), and I loved that thing. It's still at my parent's house and Charlie used to play with it when we visited. He'll be able to have it for his kiddos, too.

245scaifea
març 5, 7:22am

Today's Agenda:
Grocery pick-up, baking, office hours, course prep, keeping an eye on Charlie's school work, and hopefully some reading this afternoon.

On the reading front:
I started The Club Dumas yesterday and it's already a fun, smart read and I'm looking forward to getting farther into it. I also read a bit of Cursed, and I'm not loving it (the main character is annoying and I understand *why* she's annoying and I think she'll likely pull out of it but it's still...annoying) but I'm going to stick with it for a bit longer at least. Still listening to and enjoying The Moonstone (although we hates the narrator, precious, even though we know why *he's* annoying, too).

What We're Watching:
Thursday night at Scaife Manor means Paul and Mary doing some baking. We are loving the Masterclass shows. Plus, and episode of Arrow and one of that other British baking show whose name I can't ever remember.

246MickyFine
març 5, 9:51am

Poor narrator.

247SandyAMcPherson
març 5, 9:59am

>238 scaifea: I'd be delighted to have you expand on the implications of 'jar' vs 'box'.
Possibly post on my thread, so the conversation doesn't derail yours?

248scaifea
març 5, 9:59am

>246 MickyFine: Nailed it.

249laytonwoman3rd
Editat: març 5, 11:10am

Our family has a "passed down through the generations" toy. It was a Christmas present to my brother when he was about 4 years old, so I was already too big for it. It's Blaze, the talking rocking horse. Nearly sixty years later, it's still in pretty good shape, although one of its legs doesn't move anymore and I think the "talking" part is completely defunct. My daughter and my brother's kids loved it, and now my brother's grandchildren have been introduced to it. It has always lived "at the farm" since we grew up, so only accessible during visits to the grandparents of the two younger generations. There is a picture of each of the little 'uns who has been privileged to ride. Here's the original desperado. (I think he has since learned there are better things to wear on your feet when riding than Chucks!)

250scaifea
Editat: març 5, 1:22pm

>247 SandyAMcPherson: Ha! Bold of you to assume my thread has any sort of cohesive theme to it, Sandy. I'm happy to explain it here.

So. Here's why it's important that it's a jar and not a box:

The word used in the Greek is pithos, which is a big jar used for food storage. They would fill them with their winter food supply and then seal the top with wax. Now, the Woman of the House (the wife) would be in charge of sorting out the food supply for the winter, so if she was a good wife, she'd be judicious and sparing and careful with the supply and only break the seal on a new jar when it was absolutely necessary. Hence, closed jar = good wife, hastily-opened jar = bad wife.

Also, the shape of the jar, when turned upside down, resembles a womb. An open jar can represent a sexually active woman, and as anyone knows who reads even a little bit of Greek mythology, getting involved with a woman means bad news eventually somewhere down the road because as a race, we are Bad News. Always. So opening that particular...jar...means letting all sorts of trouble out and into your world.

BUT. Hope is left in the jar = the possibility of an heir in the womb = what makes women a necessary evil. Hesiod (our earliest and best source of the myth) even tells us that women are The Worst because you can't live with 'em and you can't live without 'em. (Seriously, he pretty much says just this.)

And here's what a pithos looks like:


251ChelleBearss
març 5, 12:24pm

My favourite toy as a kid was the tree house that my dad built. I would take my Archie comics up there :)

252scaifea
març 5, 12:32pm

>251 ChelleBearss: Oooh, tree house! Very cool! And I *loved* Archie comics!!

253scaifea
març 5, 12:36pm

This Week's Friday After-School Snack = Peanut Butter Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies:



254curioussquared
març 5, 12:44pm

>232 false-knight: >239 scaifea: Ooh, I loved Calico Critters too. I have recently gotten too into TikTok and there's a creator on there (I think the username is sylvaniandrama) who creates elaborate, dramatic scenes with various Calico Critters figures. The last one I watched involved a hedgehog who was engaged to another critter who then discovered he was cheating on her with another critter when they both had head lice. It was quite the scandal, all told in the space of a minute-long video. So some of us never grew out of those Calico Critters scenes, lol.

255SandyAMcPherson
març 5, 12:50pm

>250 scaifea: :D

Thanks. Although as a feminist, I am not thrilled with the male designation that women are BAD.

256MickyFine
març 5, 1:02pm

>253 scaifea: Yum! Costco's big cookies were on sale this week so I let Mr. Fine talk me into buying a package. So far I've had one of each and they are delicious.

257scaifea
març 5, 1:06pm

>254 curioussquared: *snork!!* That is hilarious! I'm not a TikTok-er but I might cave just for that!

258scaifea
març 5, 1:07pm

>255 SandyAMcPherson: Welp, I heartily recommend staying very far away from all Greek and Roman literature, then unless you're prepared to get angry. A lot.

259scaifea
març 5, 1:07pm

>256 MickyFine: Oh Costco cookies are So. Good. *sigh*

261scaifea
març 5, 1:22pm

>260 lycomayflower: *SNORK!!!* I LOVE IT.

262MickyFine
març 5, 1:33pm

>260 lycomayflower: Oh Spike. All of his lines make me laugh and roll my eyes.

263PersephonesLibrary
març 5, 1:48pm

>250 scaifea: Fascinating! Your explanations are highly appreciated!

264scaifea
març 5, 2:08pm

>263 PersephonesLibrary: Aw, thanks, Käthe! I'm glad you enjoyed it.

265PersephonesLibrary
març 5, 2:22pm

I made a screenshot to find it again more easily. 😊

266scaifea
març 5, 2:24pm

>265 PersephonesLibrary: Aw! You're going to give me an inflated sense of importance...

267PersephonesLibrary
març 5, 2:28pm

We all need more appreciation for the little and bigger things we do.

And if you get too inflated, I can get a needle just in case. 😉

268scaifea
març 5, 2:32pm

>267 PersephonesLibrary: *SNORK!* I'll do my best to stay humble, then!

269PersephonesLibrary
març 5, 4:22pm

Impeccable. 😊

By the way - just found this on Twitter - but I am sure you already know it. 😅

Odysseus never killed the Cyclops because he didn't want to have to bury him. That would have been a giant undertaking

271jjmcgaffey
març 5, 5:13pm

My grandfather made my mother a doll house - it was amazing, he did things like turned banisters from popsicle sticks (the round kind). It was passed down to us, and specifically to my middle sister (she was the one that was most into it, basically). I...don't know where it is. She may still have it, or we may have given it up eventually (the next generation is all boys...at least one of whom might well have played with it. They're her sons, so if she had it they'd have had the chance).

272scaifea
març 5, 5:47pm

>269 PersephonesLibrary: *SNORK!!* I love it!!

273scaifea
març 5, 5:47pm

>270 laytonwoman3rd: Oh, come on, Linda, you loved it, too.

274scaifea
març 5, 5:48pm

>271 jjmcgaffey: Oh, that's lovely! I hope it's still somewhere in the family - I know my boy loved playing with mine when he was little.

275laytonwoman3rd
març 5, 5:50pm

>273 scaifea: Sure I did...groaners are the best!

276scaifea
març 5, 8:53pm

277MickyFine
març 5, 10:49pm

Mcsweeney's did Gilmore Girls as a Sophocles play. I laughed and then had to share with my favourite classicist.

278PersephonesLibrary
març 6, 12:21am

>270 laytonwoman3rd: and >272 scaifea:
I thought Nobody would like that joke.

279scaifea
març 6, 8:18am

>277 MickyFine: Ha! Thanks for thinking of my, Micky! I've opened it in another tab and will definitely read it later on! I do love McSweeney's.

>278 PersephonesLibrary: *snork!* I saw that in the original tweet Käthe - too cute.

Have I mentioned that in Latin, "nobody" = "nemo," which makes Finding Nemo a much darker, much more existential movie...

280scaifea
març 6, 8:30am

Today's agenda:

We've just finished up our breakfast of French Toast made from the last bit of leftover Potato Bread - there is nothing better that French Toast from slightly dried out homemade bread. Hands down. Unless it's made from slightly dried out leftover cake. Which is also excellent. And now I want more French Toast.

I'm going to putter around and get caught up on LT threads while I have my coffee, then I'll throw together the Baked Fudge that'll be tonight's dinner dessert before heading into the sewing room for a bit. Then reading (or possibly a nap) this afternoon. Tomm's in charge of dinner, which will be (or so I've been told) breaded pork chops and baked potatoes. Sounds pretty good to me.

And it looks like maybe I should start another thread, so I'll get round to that, too.

On the reading front:
I spent yesterday's reading time on Henna Wars and Cursed, plus I listened to more of The Moonstone. I finished more rereading for the myth class, and we finished up another bedtime read-aloud; I'll add those mini-reviews to the new thread.

What We're Watching:
Friday Night Game Night was Cards Against Humanity: Family Edition. So, so fun. Then an episode each of Graham Norton and QI.

281ChelleBearss
març 6, 9:34am

Your dinner and dessert plan for tonight sounds pretty yummy!

Enjoy your relaxing day

282karenmarie
març 6, 10:09am

Hi Amber.

>188 scaifea: Impossible to limit it to one. The first thing that comes to mind is my Barbie, 1963 vintage, which I still have. I know, I know… Second is my Playdoh Fun Factory. I had a great time with some of Jenna’s toys when she was little, too.

I was ahead of my time with Barbie – in 1963 she and Ken were living together and she got pregnant. I stuffed a Kleenex under her clothes. My Victorian-era grandmother, born in 1882, whacked me for being indecent.

>193 katiekrug: Decades apart, but still Barbie fans, Katie! You probably had more than one Barbie – I only had one Barbie and one Ken.

>224 ffortsa: We had Lincoln Logs, Tinker Toys, and an Erector Set and I loved them too.

>242 scaifea: I had Trolls and made them outfits out of felt that I bought with allowance money. I bought the snaps and matching thread, too, and kept their clothes in old check boxes that I glued together to make into dressers.

283scaifea
març 6, 10:13am

>281 ChelleBearss: Hi, Chelle! I admit that I'm looking forward to dinner myself.

284scaifea
març 6, 10:19am

>282 karenmarie: Hi, Karen!

I never got into the playdoh thing when I was a kid, and when Charlie came around and LOVED the stuff, I dreaded when he'd ask me to get it out for him. Not sure why - it's not like it was a huge mess or anything. I just...didn't like it.

I did love playing with him, though, and when he was before-school age, we did a ton of playing together every day. My favorite was when we'd play Orange Car Red Car, as Charlie called it: we'd build a castle with his wooden blocks and then he'd make up elaborate story games involving his matchbox car collection: Orange Car (a little orange VW Bug) and Red Car (some other sort of sporty car) were the main characters (I was OC and he was Red) and they lived in the castle together and would be attacked by the Bad Guys (various other cars) who were after their magic stars. Hours, we'd play that together. *sigh*

I used to make outfits for my Barbies, too, but it wasn't so fancy as buttons and thread: I'd cut a square of fabric from my mom's scrap bin, cut a small hole right in the middle, poke it down over Barbie's head, then cut a small, long strip of the same fabric to use as a belt to cinch it round her waist: boom, instant dress.

285scaifea
març 6, 10:27am

286scaifea
març 6, 10:55am

>249 laytonwoman3rd: I'm so sorry, Linda - somehow I missed this post yesterday! And what a neat story it is, too. Any chance that there's a photo of Daughter riding it somewhere...?

287laytonwoman3rd
març 6, 11:17am

>286 scaifea: Of course there is. Right here.

288scaifea
març 6, 12:19pm

>287 laytonwoman3rd: ADORABLE. Just as I suspected it would be.

289jnwelch
març 6, 1:34pm

>287 laytonwoman3rd: Love it! Great photo.

>202 scaifea: Do you consider The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe the first Narnia book (I think most do). If so, what is the second? What I'm really wondering is where you fit in The Magician's Nephew. TMN is, by happenstance at someone else's house, the first one I read. Later, I thought, that worked pretty well.

290scaifea
març 6, 1:40pm

>289 jnwelch: Joe:

I'm a follower of the original series publication order (always publication order for me for all books):
The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (1950)
Prince Caspian: The Return to Narnia (1951)
The Voyage of the Dawn Treader (1952)
The Silver Chair (1953)
The Horse and His Boy (1954)
The Magician’s Nephew (1955)
The Last Battle (1956)

But some people like reading in chronological order within the ongoing story:
The Magician’s Nephew
The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
The Horse and His Boy
Prince Caspian: The Return to Narnia
The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
The Silver Chair
The Last Battle
En/na Amber's (scaifea) Thread #9 ha continuat aquest tema.