Busy Day! Busy Day! No Time to Make Dessert?
One of the warnings we received from people when we moved to PEI was that there would be “nothing to do there in the winter”. I am happy to report the contrary, there is a good deal to do here in the winter. It may not be as cosmopolitan as other places we’ve lived – no opera .. sigh – but as with any place we’ve lived an event calendar can soon fill up. Much of the “entertainmnet” is house oriented and perhaps a bit old fashioned but it fills the cold, snowy winter nights and grey dull days as indeed it would anywhere.
As an example last evening there was a play reading – the first of what we are hoping will be a regular event – at the Havilland Club. A small group got together for a glass of wine and a reading of Edna St. Vincent Millay’s Aria da capo – a short one act piece she wrote in 1920. This weekend there’s a house party at a friend starting at 2 p.m. to binge watch the BBC 2005 adaptation of Charles Dicken’s Bleak House. Cocktails and dinner will be served at appropriate times and no doubt – being an Island party – conversation will flow around the conflicting Jarndyce wills. Now that’s the way to binge watch!
It Gives A Lovely Light
Last evening’s play reading introduced me to a work by Edna St. Vincent Millay that was new to me. As I mentioned she wrote Aria da capo in 1920, it was a pacifist reaction to the aftermath of the First World War. At first it could be mistaken for a piece of early absurdist theatre but as it progressed the impact increased and as one reader observed it is very much of today. My feeling is that it is very much of any time period in which the world is uncertain. Which sadly if I think about it is pretty much any period in our history.
I have to admit that Millay is a familiar name but I know very little of her writing. She is regarded as a major 20th century poet however her work seems to have fallen by the wayside and indeed had already done so when we studied poetry* in high school of the ’60s. The one poem I can recall is is most often quoted from Figs from Thistles published in Poetry Magazine in June 1918:
First FigFigs from Thistles
My candle burns at both ends;
It will not last the night:
But, ah, my foes, and oh, my friends –
It gives a lovely light.
Edna St. Vincent Millay – June 1918
And thus another exploration begins of a writer whose works I want to know a bit better. Some of her early works are available online through sites such as the Project Gutenberg and others I will search for. In particular I’d like to read The Murder of Lidice, an epic dramatic poem she wrote in 1942 based on the infamous Nazi massacre.
We’ll Rant and We’ll Roar
It would seem that curmudgeonly reaction to things are on the increase these days – and not just by me. I’m not sure if its the state of the world, the crappy weather or old age but there seem to be a fair number of people I know who have one nerve left and it is becoming slightly frayed. Now rather than go into lengthy rants I thought I’d just go all corporate and do a dot point presentation of that what is sawing away at the exposed nerve at the moment.
- The ridiculous Days of Our Royal Lives soap opera that is playing out at the moment. And more particularly the Canadians who are calling for the soon to be ex-Royals moving to Canada and making Henry Charles Albert David Windsor our Governor General. 1. Read your bloody history! We gave that practice up back in February of 1952 when Vincent Massey was named as the first Canadian Governor General. 2. It would appear that as neither he nor his wife he speak French and nor do they have any marketable skills they won’t have enough points to immigrate here. 3. And perhaps the biggest concern for most of us: who the hell is going to pay for their security detail?
- The media was all atwitter (no I don’t mean Twitter I’m talking about what passes for serious media these days) about the pollution from the Australian bush fires affecting players at the Australian Open. Really? Really? It’s affecting their game. Bloody shame isn’t it? Tell it to the koalas!
- The f&*^%$g weather or more specifically the city work crews who remove the snow on our street at during the dark hours of the night. Well okay we choose to live on the main street and they do a great job of clearing the ice and snow in a timely fashion. So I’ll just kvetch about the weather! Bloody Canadian winters! Mutter…. grumble…. mutter!
Now get the hell off my ….. snow bank!
And the word for January 14th is:
Quagmire /ˈkwaɡmʌɪə/: [noun]
1. an area of muddy or boggy ground whose surface yields under the tread; a bog.
2. an awkward or complex situation that is difficult to extradite from.
3. anything soft or flabby
A 16th century compound word: quag+mire
Quag /ˈkwaɡ/: [verb]
The shaking motion of anything soft or flabby – perhaps as in “shake that booty”????? Highly onomatopoeic!