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1. lauramcphee: Colette et Louis XIV, chez elle au Palais Royale,...



lauramcphee:

Colette et Louis XIV, chez elle au Palais Royale, c1950 (Sanford H. Roth)



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2. Plathery and Hughesiness

I wish Janet Malcolm would have to add an appendix to Silent Woman for every new installment of Hughes and Plath biography mess.* This latest bit reminded me that it is LESS THAN TEN YEARS until the trunk gets opened in Ted Hughes’ archive at Emory, the one that he packed himself that’s locked off until 2023, and how much I sincerely hope that I’m not struck down before that happens because I have SO MANY THEORIES about what is in there.** After that you can put me on an ice floe and send me off. (Also think one of the two lost Plath journal notebooks is going to show up some time in the next decade—either in that trunk or from some Assia Wevill relative or if the house in Devon is ever fully unpacked. And then everyone’s going to have to REWRITE everything.)

Related: Was thinking last night about biography and how brutal it can be in its assessments. Someone was described this way in the one I’m reading: “Often dressed in yellow, her favorite color, Rose was soon known as a passable if gloomy poet and indifferent author of short stories…” Her husband: “George, a conventional and reasonably prolific author, was known as a drunk.” It really makes you lie in bed and stare at the ceiling for a while.

* Anne Stevenson in her study, tapping out a long consoling email to Jonathan Bate.
** If it turns out to just be some elaborate astrological charts and Leonard Baskin doodles and Shakespeare genealogies, how disappointing—and funny.

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3. Photo





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4. Lilac wine is sweet and heady.



Lilac wine is sweet and heady.



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5. The Evil Swan

I’m enjoying that phone conversations with my mom are my main conduit to what’s happening at the Olympics. “Both routines were beautiful. One was to the music from that ballet… you know the one with the evil swan. The other one was to ‘Scheherazade.”

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6. Good news, forgetful witches! You might have spaced out on it yesterday and only remembered when you...

Good news, forgetful witches! You might have spaced out on it yesterday and only remembered when you were falling asleep last night, but there are still TWO MORE DAYS to celebrate the Roman festival of Lupercalia.


Skipping this part this year.

Whenever I need to make myself laugh I think of the time my friend Ben got a slight concussion from falling off a car while playing ‘Starsky & Hutch grab-ass’ and the ER doctor, writing him a prescription later, asked him if he had any allergies and Ben said, “Yes, salmon.” I offer this on the off chance that you happen to be a young patrician Luperci who might later today, after being anointed with sacrificial blood “wiped off the bloody knife with wool soaked in milk,” be “expected to smile and laugh.” That can be awkward.

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7. prettiestmonsters: fancy



prettiestmonsters:

fancy



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8. Dana and LeBrun on his birthday, Jan. 24, 1981.



Dana and LeBrun on his birthday, Jan. 24, 1981.



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9. "Perhaps the greatest sea serpentologist of all times was Antoon Cornelis Oudemans, a Dutchman who...

"Perhaps the greatest sea serpentologist of all times was Antoon Cornelis Oudemans, a Dutchman who was by training an entomologist, specializing in acarology, the study of mites and ticks."
— Aie, so much there there. But mostly I like the idea that if everyone were to rank their favorite sea serpentologists, Antoon Cornelis Oudemans would top most people’s lists but not EVERYONE’s and so “perhaps.”

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10. "Being an idealist, I too wish that the world was better than I am. Like all the rest of my fellow..."

“Being an idealist, I too wish that the world was better than I am. Like all the rest of my fellow men, I don’t want to live around people with no more principles than I have. My inner fineness is continually outraged at finding that the world is a whole family of Hurstons. Seeing these things, I have come to the point by trying to make the day at hand a positive thing, and realizing the uselessness of gloominess.”

- Zora Neale Hurston, Dust Tracks on the Road, page 229. (via emilyhouk)

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11. I’m reading Caroline Alexander’s great book on the...



I’m reading Caroline Alexander’s great book on the Endurance expedition and I keep flipping to this picture of second officer Tom Crean with puppiiiieees. (Photo by Frank Hurley.)



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12. prettiestmonsters: commanderriffraff: arthistoryeveryday: His...



prettiestmonsters:

commanderriffraff:

arthistoryeveryday:

His Majesty Receives by William Holbrook Beard (1885)

Step off, rabbit!

I was once told by a children’s lit person that while it’s common for anthropomorphized animals to wear clothes in children’s book illustrations, that it’s much less common for the animals to be wearing shoes. But even when the animals do wear shoes, they never (almost never?) wear socks.



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13. Remembered this bit from Grace Paley’s “Friends"...



Remembered this bit from Grace Paley’s “Friends" today. Auld lang syne, motherfuckers.



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14. gwendabond: fuckyeahmobydick: Whales, Ships and Icebergs...







gwendabond:

fuckyeahmobydick:

Whales, Ships and Icebergs by Sophie Blackall

Adore Sophie Blackall.







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15. beatonna: Pieter Brueghel the Elder - The Hunters in the Snow...



beatonna:

Pieter Brueghel the Elder - The Hunters in the Snow (detail) (1565)

Ready for January 2014, but will it beat the winter of 1565?



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16. Photo





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17. Here at my grandfather’s in Indiana. Except with more...



Here at my grandfather’s in Indiana. Except with more dusk, more snow, more dogs.



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18. Where did you get your coat, Pam Mitford?



Where did you get your coat, Pam Mitford?



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19. janehu: groveatlanticinc: Death by Dickens (via) MORE GRAPHS...



janehu:

groveatlanticinc:

Death by Dickens (via)

MORE GRAPHS LIKE THESE



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20. savsucks: 400-year-old jewel-encrusted skeletons unearthed in...







savsucks:

400-year-old jewel-encrusted skeletons unearthed in churches across Europe







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21. I was batty about the Alvin and the Chipmunks Christmas album as...



I was batty about the Alvin and the Chipmunks Christmas album as a kid and played it all through December. Once I couldn’t find it with the other records and asked my mom where it went. She had no idea. I found it later that day by standing on one of the lower shelves of the hall closet where we kept hats & gloves (Wisconsin!) and reaching up to the upper shelves and feeling around. It was on the very top shelf. I remember returning to the living room and announcing “I FOUND IT” and thinking everyone would be as happy and relieved as I was that it’d been located.



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22. "When you hear a voice say ‘Everyone’s a critic,’ listen for the echo: Everyone’s a publicist."

“When you hear a voice say ‘Everyone’s a critic,’ listen for the echo: Everyone’s a publicist.”

- This is a million words long but extremely worthwhile (via joshreads)

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23. Drinking bear, eating pumpkin pie, reading Bring Up The Bodies. Mantel likes ‘sullen’...

Drinking bear, eating pumpkin pie, reading Bring Up The Bodies. Mantel likes ‘sullen’ the way Tartt likes ‘scorched.’ So far have looked up ‘kine’ (cows!) and ‘corvine’ (crow-like!). Also: “If someone said to Lady Rochford, ‘It’s raining,’ she would turn it into a conspiracy; as she passed the news on, she would make it sound somehow indecent, unlikely, but sadly true.”

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24. About 150 pages from the end of The Goldfinch. Really hoping the little dog makes it through okay....

About 150 pages from the end of The Goldfinch. Really hoping the little dog makes it through okay.

(Was thinking this morning of Ann Friedmanish chart of What’s Making Us Anxious In The Goldfinch?, and how it’d be 40% Popchik dying because everyone is too drugged out and forgets him or he gets run over.)

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25. Mattress Shopping

Yesterday we went mattress shopping. A friend of ours works at a mattress store, and he offered Lowell a good deal on one, and so off we went. (The old mattress was an ancient futon one and has gradually been turning me into Rumpelstiltskin.) The store turned out to be a big warehouse-type space off a country highway. Inside, Lowell and I took off our shoes and lay down on a series of different mattresses side by side in our stocking feet while our friend, who is a poet and this tall genial kind of magical personage in our lives, explained memory foam to us. Then we’d blurt out weird domestic trivia (“He gets hot at night.” etc.). You’re supposed to take fifteen minutes to test a mattress but I kept popping up after five and our friend would say, “No, take your time! Take your time!”

The model we picked out is called Opulence. It came packed in a long rectangular brown box that looked too small to hold a mattress; our friend said when we got it home, we’d pop the bag the mattress was rolled in, hear a hiss, and then the mattress would begin expanding. “You can sleep on it tonight but it’ll continue to expand for the next 24 hours.” And it has! Every time I went into the bedroom today it looked taller and taller, like a giant mattress soufflé in the bed frame. Opulence!

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