Pizza: a global history

20 May, 2022

just finished Carol Helstosky’s Pizza: A Global History

quick fun read

“The culture of poverty and hunger … created a folk cuisine…” – uh, isn’t that BBQ, poor people cooking the toughest cuts of meat. Nope, this time it’s about pizza.

Hair combs

30 April, 2022

Thinking about ”universals” after a visit to NYC Nat. History Museum. (back in HS we were taught to do that)

Hair combs. Beads. dyed and decorated clothing. everybody wants to look nice. hows that for a universal?!?!

also whistles/pipes/flutes.

and sticks for hitting people.

The Best Horror of the Year (vol. 9)

25 April, 2022

The Best Horror of the Year, vol. 9, Ellen Datlow (ed.)

Not sure why I started picking up these series, probably because I had a few bucks in my pocket while in a used book store. I used to say “I don’t like horror, either it’s dumb, or it is scary, and I don’t need any more of either in my life.” But, since my brain can’t concentrate for a novel, and if a short story is unfun, it’s over in a few pages, I’ve added horror genre to my short story kick.

I liked:

  • “The Bad Hour” Christopher Golden. Something terrible happened in Iraq, and came home.
  • “Ragman” – Rebecca Lloyd. Daughter visits grumpy dad, tries to get him to come home.
  • “What’s out there?” – Gary McMahon. Something scares the widower’s cat.
  • “The Castellmarch Man” – Ray Cluley. British legends, and a widower retraces his wife’s last steps.
  • “The Ice Beneath Us” – Steve Duffy. Two old friends share a secret.
  • “On These Blackened Shores of Time” – Brian Hodge. An abandoned mine collapse. Evidently there are unknown/forgotten mines all over! Plus union history.

It seems in those six, which is a good ratio for “ones I liked”, the others were fine, nothing against them, Ellen Datlow does a nice job, anyway, of those six, I’ll say the first 90% of the story were totally realistic. But then the last bit, is what pushes it into “horror” genre. (NOTE: I am a new reader of horror. I know nothing.) Much like you go about your day, and then late at night hear a cat scamper, but your your cat is on your bed, and it’s late, and your mind starts to wonder….

100 Great Fantasy Short Stories

23 April, 2022

100 Great Fantasy Short Stories editors: Asimov, Carr, Greenberg (1984)

I enjoyed:

  • The Anatomy Lesson – Scott Sanders
  • The Dark Ones – Richard Christian Matheson
  • Sleep – Steve Rasnic Tem
  • The Rag Thing – Donald A Wollheim

The Origin of Satan – Elaine Pagels

22 April, 2022

A quick read. I enjoyed. Pagels discusses how the role of Satan changes in the Gospels, and later how others outside and inside the faith were described as of the devil. Well written, easy to read. I recommend.

Hail Mary: the Rise and Fall of the National Women’s Football League

13 April, 2022

Just finished Lyndsey D’Arcangelo and Frankie de la Cretaz book Hail Mary: the Rise and Fall of the National Women’s Football League.

While reading I kept thinking it would be cool if NWFL restarted, but then again, concussions and there’s not yet a pipeline of preps to pros for women (American) football. Points the authors brought up.

This was a really cool history, and because I’ a nerd, I loved the ten pages of sources, plus dozens of interviews. I’m especially impressed, because most of these sources were probably not in a dusty archive, but in cardboard boxes in garages. VERY nice detective work.

Totally my thing, an in depth history of some really cool thing that not many people know about.

flash back to 1995

12 April, 2022

stayed home today, furnace annual checkup

and since I was home, a bit of cleaning… and found some stuff, from ~1995. How do I know, because I was a nerd, and dated my flashcards.


lists of vocab words from the Dune books, I like lists, makes me feel like I can learn stuff, don’t worry, I never made many actual flashcards to actually learn new words. I am still a big fan of making your own flash cards, something about writing it down help it cement in the mind. And a few cool Dune quotes: “I must not fear….” and “Memory never recaptures reality….” and “Bureaucracy destroys initiative….”…. I read at least six of those books. I loved Dune, but each one got worse.

Some Bible verses…actually I still find these cool, maybe I will finally get around to memorizing them. Yeah, at Church-of-my-youth, they were big on memory verses. I quit attending that denomination after I left home for college, and don’t regret moving along. And now a days I’m thinking that verses are often used to argue a point (see conservative x-ian politicians) and not taking the entire text seriously:

  • II Sam 23:3-4
  • Dan 11:35
  • I Tim 4:12
  • Hab 2:12
  • I Chron 29:10-13
  • Prov 25:2
  • Prov 29:11
  • Eccl 9:10
  • Lamen 3:25-26
  • Mark 12:30-31
  • Psalms 141:3-4
  • Psalms 25:7
  • Psalms 34:13-14
  • Eccl 7:2-4
  • Psalm 62:5-7
  • Psalm 82:4-5

Patrick Henry “Is life so dear, or peace so sweet,…”

TS Eliot “…Let me disclose the gifts reserved for age… the cold friction of expiring sense…as body and soul begin to fall asunder. Second the conscious impotence of rage at human folly, … the rending pain of re-enactment of all that you have done…” Why was a reading Little Gidding in my 20s???

Paul Laurence Dunbar “A crust of bread and a corner to sleep in…”

Finally, a happy one… “The only place outside of Heaven where you can be perfectly safe from all the dangers and perturbations of love is Hell.” CS Lewis.

So…that’s a sample of stuff I found important back in 1995.

MrG update

3 April, 2022

we have started SpringSoccer today (no practices, no rankings, just 8v8 games) I love it.

MrG and MyBetterHalf went to the Seattle Kraken game tonight

He didn’t make the HS soccer team. (Or basketball last Winter – which devastated him)

UNC v d00k

2 April, 2022

well, that was a good Final Four game

MrC update

1 April, 2022

MrC likes planes, and wants to fly. He has downloaded two aps to tell when and what planes are landing at several airports. (He actually was the first to tell me that everyone was avoiding Ukraine airspace.)

I think that he is Athena-kitty’s favorite human. Athena really doesn’t like to be held, but will tolerate it when he picks her up and takes her to snuggle with onto the sofa.

Recently, he and I went to Monster-Jam in Tacoma. He enjoyed. I had fun. (Happy to report that almost all the little ones had hearing protection. Unfortunately many of the men in attendance were not wearing their masks.)