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Nom de Plume



SCRATCHINGS AND JOTLINGS ON PETS, ART, BOOKS, AND OTHER EPHEMERA



Last Build Date: Mon, 14 Nov 2016 17:40:27 +0000

 



Diplomacy Begins at Home

Mon, 14 Nov 2016 01:36:10 +0000

I don’t talk about it that much, but my mother was in the Foreign Service when I was a kid. Since Donald Trump was elected President of the United States, I’ve been incredibly depressed. The blog has languished unto death, but I wanted to take a little time and write something about how I am feeling. I don’t promise that this is coherent, though. Romania in the eighties was a hard place. There was so little reliably available on the...

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Hilda training video

Mon, 16 Feb 2015 17:13:45 +0000

Post by Nitro K-9 LLC.



The terrible twosome

Sat, 07 Feb 2015 01:54:30 +0000

And here’s Harry, smug that he doesn’t have to be on a 30 foot lead practicing down-stays.



Introducing Hilda, a.k.a. the Fuzzy

Fri, 06 Feb 2015 01:46:03 +0000

Should I start blogging again? Where to start? Oh, I know … this covers the past, oh, 14 months or so …



I am a pug elevator and Mr. Demo is a hoarder

Mon, 29 Jul 2013 19:10:08 +0000

The transition is now officially official. We are well and truly settled into the new house, and I have accepted my role as a pug elevator. The treads on the stairs are very high, and Harry can’t make them on his own. Which means that I cart him up and down the stairs about 20 times a day. We joked about installing a little elevator for him on the side of the stairs. Who needs it when I’m there? Also,...

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The big news: we moved

Wed, 26 Jun 2013 21:16:25 +0000

Steve and I weren’t sure about staying in Seattle. It’s the weather. Which, around about February, makes it dangerous to keep sharp objects in the house. We dithered for a couple of years. Should we move? Where do we go? What about work? What do we want? I was pushing going overseas somewhere; Steve resisted. Inaction is its own decision, and so we went nowhere. But at some point last fall, we made the active choice not only to stay,...

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Foodist Literacy … or Literate Foodism … or something

Tue, 27 Nov 2012 06:38:58 +0000

A recentish New York Times opinion piece mused on the fact that food has replaced culture. “Foodism has taken on the sociological characteristics of what used to be known … as culture,” says William Deresiewizc. “It is costly. It requires knowledge and connoisseurship, which are themselves costly to develop. It is a badge of membership in the higher classes ….” Oh the guilt. To be sure, I’m a rather boring cook, but I do tend to wax incessantly about how...

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A great Harper’s–and where the stimulus money has gone.

Wed, 17 Oct 2012 20:00:23 +0000

Instead of reading the NYTimes on my Kindle this morning in the bathtub, I reached for the latest Harper’s instead. It was a great one. There was a fantastic article on election rigging (I am amply vindicated in my conviction that Bush may not have won–either time), another great article about why austerity doesn’t work (that, sadly, Faux News won’t read or probably even understand if they did because it includes–gasp!–numbers), and a piece on writing amidst the homeless in...

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In which I bemoan the state of literature

Wed, 17 Oct 2012 08:53:47 +0000

Lately, it feels my reading has become dilettantish. I read mysteries, historical novels. As always, I read plenty of trashy novels, my guilty pleasure (but increasingly put them down three pages in because of horrific writing). It’s been ages since I posted a book review. And part of it is that good books—really good books—seem to be harder and harder to come by. I long for the leisurely sprawl of narrative. Instead of paragraph after paragraph of sentences with each...

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More post-debate ponderings

Wed, 17 Oct 2012 04:45:51 +0000

I couldn’t help it. I watched the second debate. And boy, was I bored. Romney didn’t answer any questions, but hey, it was an opportunity to get his paternalistic little smirk in front of thousands. Obama repeated the same old trite phrases and talked to the points he no doubt rehearsed in debate camp or prep or whatever. To be fair, there was a moment in which Obama got fired up. Sadly, my Spider Solitaire game required a bit of...

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God, I love Biden

Fri, 12 Oct 2012 06:16:23 +0000

Though, really, I still question whether debates are really useful. Most of us have made up our minds and we’re going to view what our party says as having “won.” I think Ryan is a smarmy little liar who never outgrew his Ayn Rand phase (as most normal people do). Everything he said, or didn’t say reinfornces that. Ditto on the opposite side. As for the great undecided, the problem is that the punditry seems to evaluate showmanship rather than...

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All this post debate nattering

Thu, 04 Oct 2012 04:17:39 +0000

Let me first say that Youtube is a wonderful wonderful thing, and I have wasted far too much time in the past couple of weeks watching past debates–starting with Carter/Reagan. It’s really interesting to see how the debates have evolved over time. Is it my imagination, or have the questions gotten dumbed down in the past 30 years? And is it just me, or is all this post debate “analysis” just ridiculously silly? Before we closed out the CNN window,...

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Why I’ve been MIA for so long

Wed, 31 Aug 2011 19:04:48 +0000

In the 466 days since I last posted an entry on the blog, I have received countless emails from very nice readers asking whatever happened to my posts. Several people I know have asked if the blog is officially dead. Even my mother, who rarely checked in, has asked whether I will ever revive the blog. The simplest answer is that I’ve just become lazy. Posting blog entries has just felt like work for the longest time. And the longer...

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Goodbye Facebook. Again.

Sat, 22 May 2010 17:17:51 +0000

This post pretty much says it all. Okay, maybe it doesn’t because I feel compelled to add: I had signed up for another Facebook account because there were people I wanted to get back in touch with. But you know, reconnecting and Farmtown (yes, Farmtown, isn’t that pathetic?) just aren’t enough to make me want to deal with Facebook anymore. I’m pretty easy to find and don’t really need more ways to procrastinate. I don’t want to have to fiddle...

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Twitter Weekly Updates for 2010-05-02

Mon, 03 May 2010 05:39:00 +0000

Boobquake is just about the stupidest thing I've ever heard of. #