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jessibud2 reads off her own shelves in 2019 - chapter 5

This is a continuation of the topic jessibud2 reads off her own shelves in 2019 - chapter 4.

75 Books Challenge for 2019

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Sep 1, 1:04pm Top

I have been having a difficult time sticking to my title. I seem to be reserving and reading more from the library than from my own shelves, despite all good intentions. Oh well, c'est la vie. I have also hit several road bumps this year so I am not sure I will reach 75. But I will try!


Edited: Sep 1, 1:15pm Top

Well, here we are: September. My little garden has done well this year, giving me lots of colour and pleasure. I could have done without a couple of recent unwanted guests: pigeons! In all my years here, this is the first time they have shown up. I brought my one bird feeder inside for a week and they seem to have taken the hint and disappeared. Until this afternoon. Grrrr

Anyhow, I want to post a few pictures from my garden before it's gone. I hope this will work:

Edited: Sep 1, 1:18pm Top

The colours seem sharper at dusk than in the glaring sun of mid-day

Saw 3 of these in one morning but only that once, all summer:

Edited: Sep 1, 1:26pm Top

I can't remember what this one is called but it bloomed all through the summer, then appeared to die completely. I continued watering it anyhow and the other day, voila! It bloomed again. The flowers are very tiny but so pretty!

This last one is from the backyard, on the fence. I love yellow begonias:

Edited: Sep 1, 1:30pm Top

Open for business!

I just today finished The Initiates, a graphic novel by Etienne Davodeau. It was an interesting concept, Davodeau the author/illustrator learning the art of wine-making from a vintner, and in return, the vintner learns the craft of creating comics. I thought it was interesting, not outstanding but still, worth the read.

Will begin the next of the 2 I picked up from the library yesterday: Inheritance: A Memoir of Genealogy, Paternity and Love.

Sep 1, 3:21pm Top

Wow, i LOVE you garden pictures It looks gorgeous. Shelley, so much colour for this time of year.....well done! Happy new thread and no worries about where the wonderful books you read come from whether it is library or off the shelves.

Sep 1, 3:51pm Top

Your garden looks lovely Shelley.

Sep 1, 3:56pm Top

New thread! New thread! Just in time. Hiya howdy.

Sep 1, 4:01pm Top

Your garden is beautiful! Mine is pretty much shot now as it was mostly vegetables. The tomatoes have the blight, and the butternut squash has powdery mildew. However, we've had fun harvesting the odd vegetable and herb all summer long.

This year I did not conintue with our general bird feeder because the house sparrows had begun to take it over. Instead we just had our hummingbird feeder up. They've been visiting all summer long, but I see their visits are dropping off a bit now so they should be gone soon. :(

Sep 1, 4:22pm Top

Happy new thread Shelley my dear, the photos are gorgeous by the way. I am classing September as a new start and will be visiting the threads more often after a couple of slack months. I hope you are having a good weekend, we had a nice relaxing one but it seems to pass so quickly.

Hope you have a good week ahead and send love and hugs from both of us dear friend.

Sep 1, 5:13pm Top

Happy new thread!

Your garden looks beautiful. Love all the colors.

Sep 1, 6:41pm Top

>6 mdoris:, >7 Caroline_McElwee: - Thanks, Mary and Caroline.

>8 weird_O: - Hi Bill!

>9 SqueakyChu: - Hi Madeline. Funny, I have had some years where sparrows were almost all I saw. The last few years, though, they have been scarce and my most common visitors are goldfinches, house finches and cardinals. Happily! I would dearly love to have a veggie garden but don't have enough sun in the back and stupid condo rules permit only flowers in the front, not veggies.

>10 johnsimpson: - Hi John. Good to see you!

>11 figsfromthistle: - Thanks, Anita. I am really pleased with the colours, too. It all came together this year and everything just pops!

Edited: Sep 1, 8:30pm Top

>9 SqueakyChu: Seriously consider growing some herbs next year, They don't require all that much sun...and you can eat them! Herbs flower so you can grow them out front. ;D

I hate condo rules. Our neighborhood has a few houses with simply terrific veggie gardens out front. Our house only has sun on one side so that became our tiny veggie garden. We tied a few veggies out front (melons), but they refused to grow, and then the rabbits ate what was left of them! :D

Sep 1, 8:29pm Top

Beautiful photos from your garden, Shelley! Happy New Thread!

I think I enjoyed The Initiates a bit more than you did. I liked what I learned about vine growing and wine making. :-)

Back to your prior thread, I enjoyed the post comparing JFK with our current president. Well, enjoyed... maybe appreciated is the better word. Ha.

Sep 1, 8:53pm Top

>13 SqueakyChu: - I might just try that, Madeline. But here, while I have seen bunnies occasionally, the raccoons and squirrels and even skunks eat stuff regularly. That's why I bring in the feeder every night.

>14 EBT1002: - Thanks, Ellen. I didn't *not* enjoy The Initiates, because I did like it. It just wouldn't make my top 10 list, let's just say. I do appreciate that he makes the speech bubbles readable. I really was taken and moved by the trilogy of John Lewis' March, for example, but had to use a magnifying glass for some of those speech bubbles. My eyes aren't the best in the world, true, but I don't usually need a magnifier to read! Not yet, anyhow!

Re the Anu Garg comparison from that last thread that you mention, on a more cynical note, a friend just sent me this today. If you haven't heard of Randy Rainbow, check him out. He is absolutely hilarious, and his use of montage (and Broadway musicals, literature, etc) is purely brilliant:


Sep 1, 9:19pm Top

Oh, I'm glad to hear you share that quibble about the otherwise magnificent March trilogy. I purchased the trilogy as a boxed set but haven't yet read the third book. I think it's the small font to which you refer that led me to "take a break" from the series and I've not yet gotten back to it. Somehow just the validation that it's an annoyance is enough to embolden me to tackle it when I get back from this trip. I also have Good Talk waiting for me so I'll have a bit of a graphic-format binge this fall. :-)

I have heard of Randy Rainbow and seen a few of his pieces. He provides much-needed comic relief (although I worry that there will not really be relief from all that is brewing in our world).

Sep 1, 9:51pm Top

>16 EBT1002: - Do get back to the March series. So very worthwhile. Just get a page magnifier! And Good Talk was also excellent! I really loved it.

I just spent the last hour or so watch the Randy Rainbow parodies. He is really hilarious and talented. If you just sit and watch, they come on one after the other. I have no idea how many there are but some are so-so, while others are truly brilliant. I love how he uses actual footage to create his *interviews*. And I love his honesty. Of course there is no relief from the current reality, but comic relief is better than none at all and I believe we need to get it where we can. I think he is particularly good at it.

Sep 2, 12:53am Top

Happy new thread, Shelley. I got caught up with the end of your last thread before I came on here but unfortunately the link to the article about book lovers in New York no longer worked. But anyway, I am working on getting my book buying under control (besides, we do have one book place to look at on the itinerary while in NYC). I know what you mean about the library books. I was going to the library every week to pick up multiple holds but I put the holds on pause at the library and I have actually been reading some of my own books!

Sep 2, 5:26am Top

Happy new thread, Shelley!
Lovely pictures of your garden, flowers always make me happy.

>3 jessibud2: The colours seem sharper at dusk than in the glaring sun of mid-day
Photographers call the hour right after dawn and right before dusk "The Golden Hour", as at that time photo's often have that beautiful glow.

Sep 2, 9:41am Top

Hi Shelley and happy new thread. Beautiful pictures of your garden, thanks for sharing.

Sep 2, 1:08pm Top

Happy New Thread, Shelley. Beautiful garden photos!

I'm glad The Initiates passed muster with you. They can't all be home runs. I agree, Good Talk is so excellent.

I hadn't thought about the tiny print that appears sometimes in the March Trilogy. Without my glasses I have trouble telling a tree from a telephone pole, but reading tiny print is no problem. People get amused by Madame MBH and me - she wears reading glasses, and has to put them on to look at anything up close, while for things up close, I have to take mine off (or like to, anyway - they're bifocals, but it's easier for me without). So when someone shows us a photo or the like, there's a lovely dance of the glasses.

If you read Lanny by Max Porter, have your magnifier ready - text relating to the wood spirit comes in swirly small print.

Sep 2, 9:02pm Top

Happy new thread!

Sep 2, 10:16pm Top

Happy new thread, Shelley. xx

Sep 3, 12:52am Top

Happy new thread and love your garden!!

Sep 4, 8:57am Top

>18 Familyhistorian: - Meg, you are doing so much travelling! Wow! Have a great time in NYC!

>19 FAMeulstee: - Hi, Anita. Thanks. And I think I have heard that term before but never really thought about it. I do find it's true, though.

>20 karenmarie: - Hi, Karen.

>21 jnwelch: - Hi, Joe. My 2 eyes are so different that one lens helps me see close up and the other, for distance. I have always just worn my glasses all the time so no need for the dance, though when I first started wearing glasses, it took some adjustment to get used to that!

>22 drneutron:, >23 PaulCranswick:, >24 Berly: - Thanks, Jim, Paul and Kim.

Sep 4, 9:01am Top

And now, for a refreshing break from the real world of, well, everything bad and negative and scary. A friend (American) just sent me this article and it's worth the read, if for no other reason than to remember that in fact, people really can be good. And if you haven't yet had a chance to see Come From Away, do try to find an opportunity. I have seen it once, 2 years ago, and if it weren't so expensive to get tickets, would go again in a heartbeat:


Sep 4, 10:59am Top

E-mail came yesterday from Ben McNally - sure hope Toronto rises up to reverse this loss of a glorious bookstore.

Edited: Sep 4, 5:01pm Top

Yes, I heard yesterday. In fact, he is on the radio talking about it right this minute, as I type. I find this heart-breaking. One by one, the indie bookstores in this city are being lost to either big box stores or construction, in this case. Ben McNally's is Toronto's most beautiful bookstore:


I am impressed that you heard of this, Marianne!

Sep 5, 6:33am Top

You mentioned Ben McNally's a long while back.

The site itself was so inviting and inspiring that I signed up for announcements...
sure hope the next one
shows Toronto's "NO Way!" reaction to an "alley" replacing this beautiful destination bookstore.

Sep 5, 4:14pm Top

>26 jessibud2: how totally mad is that Shelley. I hope the locals resist.

Sep 5, 8:55pm Top

I saw Come From Away when it premiered at the Seattle Repertory Theater a couple of years ago and it was AMAZING!!! The audience -- the entire audience -- leapt from our seats as one when the curtain dropped. It's the most spontaneous and unanimous standing ovation I've ever witnessed for a live theater production. And totally deserved.

Sep 6, 4:56pm Top

Shelley have you seen the Gordon Lightfoot doc? It's coming here soon and I'm tempted.

Edited: Sep 7, 7:53pm Top

>32 mdoris: - Yes, Mary, I saw it over the summer. It was very good. Go for it!

Another brand new Canadian documentary open TIFF last night, Once Were Brothers, about Robbie Robertson, of The Band. Great reviews and I will see it when it comes out in general distribution. I'm sure it will be at Hot Docs soon. I am in Montreal right now, home Tuesday.

Mary, here is blurb abut the Lightfoot doc: Scroll down for the blurb. Not sure why, but there is no trailer for this one:

If You Could Read My Mind

Sep 7, 7:38pm Top

Hi Shelley. Congrats on the US Open victory by your young Canadian. She was very impressive --- showed some nerves but after she lost the first of her match points, I think she settled in. As Serena mounted her comeback, I imagined Bianca saying to herself "I've got northing to lose; this will not be my last US Open final," and her play loosened right back up again.

I'll be interested in how the documentary about Robbie Robertson is. The Band was such an iconic group of their time. I still go back and listen to some of their great songs now and then. Of course, there are the classics but I love "Whispering Pines" as a beautiful ballad.

Edited: Sep 7, 7:55pm Top

Hi Ellen. You know, I have never followed tennis and have never even watched a game in my life before today. But wow, wasn't she impressive? She really looked far more relaxed to my eyes than Serena did and that is probably what carried her. She is certainly very poised for a 19-year old! I had to chuckle in the interviews afterwards when she apologized to the crowd. So Canadian, lol! I think it really was a passing of the torch, from one generation to the next and though I don't think Serena is done, I do believe she really respects Bianca and what she has achieved. Bianca has often said Serena is a hero of hers.

As for the Robbie Robertson film, I haven't seen it yet, of course, but I am including a link here to some of the press it's had over this past week, as well as a good interview I listened to a few days ago:


interview: https://www.cbc.ca/radio/q/robbie-robertson-on-his-new-documentary-once-were-bro...

Sep 7, 10:21pm Top

Thanks Shelley for your solid recommendation. I now have tickets for the Gordon Lightfoot doc at the end of the month.

Sep 7, 10:31pm Top

Happy Saturday, Shelley. Sorry, I haven't been by in awhile. Nothing much to report on the birding front. Once Were Brothers sounds really good. Always been a big fan of The Band and The Last Waltz.

Edited: Sep 8, 8:09am Top

>36 mdoris: - Yay, Mary. I'll be interested in your review. I will let you know how the Linda Ronstadt doc is after I see it next week. (did I mention that one?)

>3 jessibud2: - For some crazy reason, Mark, I have never seen The Last Waltz. I need to fix that soon!

Sep 8, 4:39pm Top

Hi Shelley my dear, hope you are having a good weekend and send love and hugs from both of us dear friend.

Sep 8, 5:42pm Top

>38 jessibud2: No you didn't mention the Linda Rondstadt doc. Now that's a name from the past and I loved her music. I've just been listening to "Small Glories" a duo from Winnipeg who are fabulous. I want to go to their concert here in October but the dates don't work for me. DRATS.

Sep 8, 6:39pm Top

>40 mdoris: - From the trailer, it looks like it will be a lovely tribute to Linda Ronstadt. She has Parkinson's now and it's affected her voice. Here is the trailer:

The Sound of My Voice

Scroll once to the right for the trailer. Here is an article, as well:


Thanks for that link, Mary. I will check them out, I don't know this group

Sep 8, 6:47pm Top

>39 johnsimpson: - Thanks, John, and to you as well.

Sep 8, 6:58pm Top

And Linda Ronstadt! I love her lesser-known and out-of-print album, "Winter Light." I love her classic stuff, too, but this album highlights her voice so beautifully.

Sep 8, 7:23pm Top

>43 EBT1002: - I don't know that one, Ellen but I will see if I can find it. Our library has a remarkable collection of music cds as well as movies, tv show dvds, etc. What would we do without libraries?!

Sep 8, 7:27pm Top

Looks like you and I will be traveling on the same day, Shelley. Have a safe trip home!

Sep 8, 7:40pm Top

"What would we do without libraries?!" I can't even imagine!

Edited: Sep 8, 7:50pm Top

I am currently in Montreal and today, I went out for brunch with my cousins then went to explore a bookstore/café that was written up in the local paper yesterday. Montreal has some lovely bookstores and since moving my mum to her new digs, I honestly have not had any time to myself whenever I am here. Today was my day and it was fun. Brunch was outstanding (a classic Montreal bagel with cream cheese, lox, fries and a chai latte). There were 2 bookstores, once next door to the café and one across the street. Unfortunately, turns out they were both French bookstores and each had only one small narrow wall of English books. It is slightly disorienting to walk into a bookstore, and be surrounded by beautiful books and realize I can't read most of them. Shows how spoiled I am in Toronto, doesn't it? Still, I managed to find and purchase one (what, you are surprised?): The Great Believers by Rebecca Makkai, after so much love here on LT.

Then, I hopped on a bus and made my way back to my mum's, stopping at my newest favourite, very tiny but lovely Bibliophile book shop. I rarely buy brand new books but today I was indulging myself so, 3 more will be added to my suitcase, plus a fantastic box of 100 postcards on the topic of *World's Greatest Bookstores*. How could I resist? I also almost bought a box of 50 postcards from the art of Jane Mount, based on her book Bibliophile: An Illustrated Miscellany but in the end, resisted. The 3 books from here are: One Night, Marcovitch by Ayelet Gundar-Goshen, At The Existentialist Café with Jean-Paul Sartre, Simone de Beauvoir, Albert Camus and others, and My Russian Grandmother and her American Vacuum Cleaner by Meir Shalev (a memoir).

I am still reading my library book and don't ask me why I brought 3 other books with me from home (the just-in-case books).

I couldn't fall asleep last night until well after 2 am, for some reason, and around 5 pm this afternoon, it hit me and I am really dragging now. So I have a feeling that even if I try to read tonight before bed, I may not last long. But if I dream about books, you know I will be smiling..... and there will be plenty of time to read tomorrow.

Sep 8, 7:44pm Top

>45 Familyhistorian: - Have a fantastic trip, Meg. Is this the NYC trip? How long will you be there and what's on the agenda?

>46 EBT1002: - Me neither! :-)

Sep 8, 7:59pm Top

>47 jessibud2: I loved At the Existentialist Café Shelley. I also loved Bakewell's How to Live: A Life of Montaigne. I'm glad you've indulged yourself too, you deserve a treat after all you have been dealing with lately.

Sep 8, 8:50pm Top

>49 Caroline_McElwee: - Thanks, Caroline. I thought so, too, lol! The book sure does look like a good one! Glad you are giving it a thumbs-up. My problem is that I can't seem to stop requesting books from the library, but I can't wait to dive into my new purchases! If only I was a faster reader.

Edited: Sep 12, 8:09am Top

Tried posting this last night but LT was not very cooperative.

Just got an email about a series at our Hot Docs film cinema that is starting up soon (well, this year's version of it; I have subscribed to this series in the past):
The Music on Film series

There is enough in this series of 7 films that is new to me to make it intriguing. I have already seen Mavis! but would happily see it again. She is a force!!

I have to check with a friend to see if she is available so we'll sign up together. But it looks good.

Sep 12, 10:26am Top

Hi Shelley!

I'm glad to hear that you got a relaxing day in Montreal, and what better way to spend it than cousins time, food time, and book store time! I'm glad to see that you got The Great Believers, because I'm one of the LTers who gave it much love.

Edited: Sep 13, 6:36pm Top

>52 karenmarie: - Hi Karen. Thanks and yes, our group of cousins has always been a close group so it's great to spend time with them. These 2 in particular; they are the ones I used to stay with when visiting my mother, when I couldn't stay at her home because of her idiot husband. This cousin's brother, by the way, just published his first book. I should probably promote it, even though I won't be reading it as he writes a genre I don't/won't read (kind of sci-fi/fantasy/horror) but he is a very funny and witty guy and has been writing for years. He also hosted a very popular radio trivia program in Montreal for over a decade and is well-known there for that. His new book (first novel) is called Hollywood North: A Novel in Six Reels - apparently no touchstone here yet. It is available on amazon, I understand.


If anyone reads it, please let me know how you liked it.

Sep 13, 8:01pm Top

Happy new thread!

Sep 13, 9:01pm Top

I was just clearing out old emails and found this. Such fun! You sure can't do this with a Kindle!!


Sep 14, 12:05am Top

>55 jessibud2: Fun and clever Shelley, though I wouldn't have wanted to have to reseshelve them all though!

Sep 14, 8:03am Top

>56 Caroline_McElwee: - No kidding! ;-). Did you notice that the first book is called *Before the Fall*? Funny

Sep 14, 8:52am Top

>55 jessibud2: That was quite wonderful although I could have done without the music. I liked hearing the books…

Sep 14, 6:49pm Top


Edited: Sep 16, 5:04pm Top

Last night, I saw a most unique and riveting one-man show. It was called The Knitting Pilgrim and featured the Stitched Glass Panels. It was a one-hour show, presented at my friend's church.

Kirk Dunn's father, grandfather and great-grandfather were all ministers in the church. All Kirk wanted to do was be an actor. And knit.

The core of the story is that after 9-11, in 2001, he began to question why people demonize others of certain faiths. He wanted to explore the themes of compassion and acceptance, commonality and conflicts. He decided to try to find the commonalities of what he called the 3 Abrahamic faiths (I had not heard that specific term before), Christianity, Judaism, and Islam. This show tells the story of how he did it. In a nutshell, he decided to knit 3 panels, one for each religion. They are 9 feet by 6 feet each and resemble the stained glass windows you see in churches and synagogues. Each panel has a central symbol of that religion and inside the symbol, various other symbols of all the positive values in that religion and around the perimeter or frame, all the negative impressions from its history, politics, etc., since all people and all religions have both positive and negative. The 3 panels are revealed only after the show is done and they are STUNNING. The telling of the story of each panel is woven through with video clips of interviews he did with his dad (the minister), a Muslim Imam, and a female rabbi. Also, photos of his family, from his wedding and the births of his 2 kids. This was to show the passage of time (he expected the project to take 15 months. It took 15 YEARS!).

He talked about the books he had read and the interviews and research he had done and when I went to his blog (link below), there is much more detail about the research project itself.

http://www.kirkdunn.com/ (check out the Knitting and Blog tabs). Well worth the read.

The show ends as he reveals, from behind a curtain, all three panels. The audience is invited to come down and see them up close. Getting up close and personal with the panels, it is astounding how gorgeous they are. He uses a style of twining many colours of wool together. You can only really see up close how exquisite it really is, the craftsmanship, etc. The photos I took don't really do it justice at all.

And incidentally, I asked him after the show where he has toured and so far, it's only been in Canada. I said this would be a very powerful and wonderful presentation to do in NYC, at a 9-11 anniversary memorial. He said he would love it if that ever happened! I will try to attach some photos here.

The Islamic Panel:

The Christian Panel:

The Judaism Panel:

Edited: Sep 16, 5:05pm Top


fingers of peace, from the Islamic Panel:

Dove of Peace from the Judaism Panel (the blue inside the dove spell out *Shalom* in Hebrew letters. Shalom means peace):

Tikun Olam, from the Judaism Panel. Tikun Olam translates as *repairing the world* but it is broader than that. It is the concept or value of community service, or, what we can do to repair or contribute to making a better world or community. This concept is often depicted as two cupped hands holding a globe, or, the world.

Dunn's talent is beyond exquisite. I am not much of a knitter (I can do scarves, haha, that's it), but it's seeing how he combines colours and uses them to create such gorgeous images that leave you amazed at the scope of the project. He does explain in detail, how each panel was not only created but also mounted for exhibit and travel. I honestly hope he gets to exhibit and travel this show widely. It is not only delightful but so very important, today, more than ever.

Sep 16, 5:54am Top

>60 jessibud2: >61 jessibud2: extraordinary Shelley. I shall look more closely and follow the link later. What talent.

Sep 16, 6:16am Top

>60 jessibud2: Beautiful work, and such an interesting concept. I can see what you mean about the details and his way of working in your pictures.
Yes, I would love to see those up close, at an exhibition. They deserve the recognition.

Sep 16, 4:30pm Top

>60 jessibud2: >61 jessibud2: So beautiful and thoughtful, must have been wonderful to see the panels up close, Shelley.
I had to giggle a bit when I read that Dunn thought he could do this project in 15 months, and turned out to be 15 years.

Sep 16, 5:07pm Top

>62 Caroline_McElwee: - It really is, Caroline.

>63 EllaTim: - I wish I could have better captured his work in the closeups but you can see a bit of it on his website blog. Also, other work he has done.

>64 FAMeulstee: - Yes, we all laughed when he mentioned that. He is a witty storyteller. I think that is why the photos of his kids worked so well to punctuate the passage of time. They are now mid-to-late teens and kind of grew as the panels did!

Sep 18, 12:56am Top

>60 jessibud2: That is really interesting fabric art that Dunn does, Shelley. More power to him if he can get his stuff accepted as art. Unfortunately fabric art doesn't get the respect that paint or other art mediums do.

I was on my NYC trip as you probably saw by the photo on Katie's thread. We had a fantastic time and saw lots. I ended up with a few books. I bought Bibliophile in the New York Public Library and some other books at the Strand, a fantastic bookshop with new and used books. We also saw Beautiful: The Carole King Story on our last night there.

Edited: Sep 25, 6:02am Top

>66 Familyhistorian: - Wasn't Beautiful a wonderful show? I saw it here in Toronto last year and loved it. I am happy that you bought Bibliophile - it is a lovely book.

I love fabric art and you are right that it doesn't get the respect it deserves. There is an artist from Dundas, Ontario, Lorraine Roy, who I met several years ago at the downtown outdoor Art Exhibit who does fabric art using tiny scraps of fabric to create botanical landscapes, particularly trees. I own 2 pieces of her work and her talent is astounding. Her background is in agriculture and that passion drives her art. Have a look: http://www.lroyart.com/index.php. For several years, each autumn, I have gone the Dundas Studio Tour, a walking tour around Dundas, visiting various studios and visited hers as well. Her work is beautiful.

As far as Kirk Dunn's work, I was truly blown away. I can't even imagine how he pulled it off. I hope after he finishes travelling with the show, that it will somehow find a permanent home somewhere in a museum, maybe the Textile Museum here in Toronto or some other public space where it can be viewed by many.

Sep 18, 12:28pm Top

>67 jessibud2: Beautiful was a great show and so well put together. We really enjoyed it. My friend had tried to see it when it was in Vancouver but that didn't work out so she was really happy when we were able to get tickets to see it on our last night in New York.

I have always been drawn to fabric art and at one point tried to get into Emily Carr University. My portfolio leaned heavily on fabric art and when they reviewed it I got the distinct impression that it was not something that they valued. I had hoped to be able to learn different techniques through the college (I think ECU was a college when I applied) but, I guess I wouldn't have learned much there if they weren't into that artistic medium. I hope that the artists whose work you admire find success with their work.

Edited: Sep 18, 1:36pm Top

>60 jessibud2: Gorgeous artwork Shelley. Thanks for sharing it with us. I'm always learning something (and inspired!) when I visit your thread

Sep 19, 2:55pm Top

Hi Shelley! It's been a long and weird road but I'm back among the living. Sending hugs northwestward.

Sep 19, 6:27pm Top

>69 kac522: - Thanks, Kathy. I only wish my photos were better! :-)

>70 richardderus: - Hi, Richard and welcome back!! I hope you are well and truly on the mend and that the page has been turned on the awful few weeks you have endured. Hugs back atcha!

Edited: Sep 21, 5:50pm Top

I went to a university book sale yesterday and came home with 9 books. The average price of the books was between $3 and $4 which is not bad but nothing like the bags of books for a few bucks that Bill (weird_o) seems to find at the sales he goes to!

Tomorrow is Word on the Street here in Toronto, one of my favourite book/author events of the year.


I haven't had a good look yet at the schedule of author talks. I tend to wander aimlessly unless I plan well. Which isn't the worst fate, at a book fair, after all, is it.... But this is the schedule, much easier to get organized this way:


I saw a very good documentary film yesterday about Miles Davis, Miles Davis - The Birth of Cool. Scroll once to the right for the trailer.

I will finish one book tonight then come back with reviews later of that one and the previous one I have read. Slowly, slowly but surely....

Sep 21, 11:12pm Top

Hi Shelley.

>60 jessibud2: and >61 jessibud2: That looks so interesting and unusual!

I hope you have fun wandering around the book fair (it sounds like heaven).

Sep 22, 10:36pm Top

2 quick reviews:

The Catcher was a Spy was an in-depth, if repetitive, look at the life of a baseball player, Moe Berg, in the 1930s and 40s, and his unusual, unconventional life. He was a mysterious, and complex man. I was intrigued but felt the book would have benefitted from tighter editing, for sure. Still, I am not sorry I read it.

They Called Us Enemy, a graphic memoir by Star Trek's George Takei, was everything it has been billed as: an excellent, important yet surprisingly free-of-bitterness memoir of a grim time in the life of the author. A shameful chapter in US history, which parallels an almost identical chapter in Canada's history, as well. Some well-known Japanese-Canadian authors who have written about the same period include environmentalist David Suzuki, author Joy Kogawa, and others. I liked Takei's perspective and his loving account of his family and their influence on his own life.

I spent today at Toronto's annual book and magazine fair, Word on the Street. I sat in on 2 author talks, one of whom was Jody Wilson-Raybould, who has been in the news a lot recently for taking on the Prime Minister a few months ago in a very public controversy. I don't expect non-Canadians to have heard of it but Canadians know very well of what I speak. I was spell-bound as she sat on stage, interviewed by a local tv host, Steve Paikin, who I also admire greatly as an interviewer. I purchased her book, From Where I Stand, and actually stood in line to have her sign it. I have to say, I don't normally go in for *autographs* but I made an exception today. I thanked her for being a breath of fresh air and for her integrity, a quality seldom seen in politics. She is truly an inspiration and I hope she continues to make inroads for Indigenous people, and women everywhere.

The other author I listened to was Mike Barnes, whose book, Be With: Letters to a Caregiver felt particularly important for me these days. Both were good and it was a good day. I purchased a few other books, as well as winning one free book in one of those wheel spinner games. Though it had rained this morning, by the time I got down to the Harbourfront, the sky was clear blue, and the sun was brilliant and it was HOT! 30C, even down by the water of Lake Ontario! Last gasp of summer, indeed!

Sep 22, 10:56pm Top

Glad that you had a good time! I will go next year!

Sep 25, 5:51am Top

>67 jessibud2: I just had a look at Lorraine Roy's work. Absolutely wonderful. Thanks for that link. I love how she combines art and science. Lots to see and read at her site, I'll be doing that.

Sep 27, 12:06pm Top

>76 EllaTim: - Hi Ella. Yes, Lorraine Roy is quite a talent. Her husband is a professional photographer and his work is usually very large format, the kind you sometimes see on the walls of offices or large spaces. He photographs nature and his work is as spectacular as hers is with fabric. The very first piece of hers I ever bought was a small photo of a tree, his photo, that she had embellished with threads. Very unique and lovely. The other piece I purchased, a couple of years ago, was a bit larger. I am currently in Montreal, at my mum's but when I get home, I will post a photo of them both. I missed going on the studio tour this year as it was last weekend and just didn't work out for me, with the timing.

I am still thinking about the larger knitted pieces by Kirk Dunn, The Stitched Glass Panels, from way up there (>60 jessibud2:, >61 jessibud2:).

Sep 27, 1:48pm Top

VLT = Vegetable, Lettuce, Tomato = McDonald's will be piloting Beyond Meat burgers beginning
in late September in southern Ontario.

If they go over well, they will be added to USA menus by May 2020.

How cool would that be? = a Happy Meal with VLT burger, fries cooked in vegetable oil, and a new fun toy!
(a Baby Beanie Carrot, maybe?)

Please keep us posted if you taste one.

Sep 28, 3:27pm Top

>74 jessibud2: Sounds like an interesting author talk. Especially since Paikin was the interviewer!

Have a great weekend :)

Sep 28, 7:16pm Top

>78 m.belljackson: - Probably not any time soon, Marianne! ;-)

>79 figsfromthistle: - It was, Anita! Thanks

Sep 28, 7:28pm Top

I just got home from a few days in Montreal. Happy to know I'll be sleeping in my own bed tonight. :-)

I just got some news from a friend of mine and I am very excited about this: an old British satire show is making a comeback: Spitting Image is returning!!!

I used to adore this program. Witty, biting and no holds barred. It is, indeed, very timely for it to be resurfacing now. I don't know if it aired in the USA but I used to watch it here in Toronto, though it was on very late at night (11:30 or so if I remember correctly) and I was working and in university at the time. But I sure hope it will be aired here again. It is really wicked brilliant! Can't wait!

Sep 29, 2:00am Top

Welcome back home, Shelley. Speaking of home did your basement leak saga ever have a happy ending?

Edited: Oct 6, 10:33am Top

Hi Shelley!

>60 jessibud2: Absolutely stunning! Thank you for sharing.

I was able to acquire a copy of Bibliophile at our Friends of the Library sale. I’ve been seeing comments here on LT about it but never wish listed it. Now, I’m glad I’ve got a copy.

Glad you’re back home.

Sep 29, 12:36pm Top

>60 jessibud2: These are beautiful pictures! P has a cousin who is a rug hooker and her pieces are stunning. She is now quite an authority (giving workshops) on Maude Lewis and has done Lewis look/alikes. I'll post a few on my thread if you are interested.

Edited: Sep 29, 12:44pm Top

>81 jessibud2: Yay, yes great timing for its return Shelley. The puppets were great, and the wit snappy, sharp, seering and on the nail.

Some of the new puppets here:


Edited: Sep 29, 8:05pm Top

>82 Familyhistorian: - Hi, Meg. As a matter of fact, no, absolutely nothing has been done. I have been in touch with a lawyer and a lawyer's letter went out almost 2 weeks ago. Still not a word of reply. The one good thing, though not nearly enough, is that we brought in an arborist and he said that the tree's roots are almost certainly the cause of the cracked foundation and it was on the strength of his report that we succeeded in getting a permit from the city to have it removed. That should happen this week, but I still have no definite date. In my gut, I know the excavation and foundation repair won't happen before winter and I dread what the winter will bring in terms of my basement. To say I am fed up is about the most polite I can be.

What's happening with your move? Is that still on?

>83 karenmarie: - Hi, Karen. Thanks, I am happy that you liked it. It was really an outstanding evening of storytelling and art. By the way, your touchstone for Bibliophile: An Illustrated Miscellany goes to something else but I am happy that you got yourself a copy. It really is a delight.

>84 mdoris: - Thanks, Mary. I saw the pics on your thread and pm'd you the name of my friend who is also a rug hooker and a Maud Lewis fan. I bet they know each other!

Sep 29, 7:33pm Top

>85 Caroline_McElwee: - Hi Caroline. I can't see the article you linked to without subscribing but I did see a few of the puppets in the Guardian article I linked to. I have to find out if and when we will see it here in Canada. I can't wait!

Sep 29, 8:00pm Top

>86 jessibud2: I was hoping that you hadn't mentioned it because it was all fixed, Shelley. What was I thinking. Nothing new about my move. We are waiting for the City of Coquitlam to make the rezoning official and then will have to wait for developer interest. I don't know how fast that will come given our lackluster real estate market at the present.

>87 jessibud2: Isn't that funny, I can see the article just fine and there are lots of fun puppet caricatures.

Sep 29, 8:03pm Top

>88 Familyhistorian: - I see that it's my ad-blocker that they want me to turn off in order to read the article. I can see the first puppet but the rest is blocked to me. I will not turn off my ad-blocker. It's there for a reason, lol!

Sep 30, 10:11pm Top

The short-list for the Giller Prize was announced today:


The winner will be announced at the gala on Nov. 18 and this year, it will be hosted by Jann Arden! That promises to be a fun night!

I won't get to read all 6 books but I will try for at least one, probably the David Bezmozgis title. I have read one of his before and liked his writing.

Sep 30, 10:14pm Top

>90 jessibud2: Michael Crummey is probably the standout there for me, Shelley. Canadian literature is far too difficult to find in Malaysia.

Edited: Oct 3, 8:04am Top

It's pretty impossible not to hear, on a daily basis, about the craziness going on in US politics these days. Even without watching any of the tv coverage, it's on the radio news every hour and in print, everywhere you turn. Not that we don't have our own political issues and hot topics here in Canada, at the moment - our federal election is only a couple of weeks away and we are not scandal-free. But seriously, our hot buttons seem like child's play in comparison to you-know-who, south of the border.

So, I could hardly resist when I was browsing through the Home Sense store yesterday and saw 2 books that just jumped into my cart. They now sit on my coffee table and are a pleasure, and a salve for the soul and an almost impossible memory. Put together by the same editor, one M. Sweeney, each is a book of official White House photos, paired with quotes from various speeches given over the last 15 years or so. The first book is Hugs From Obama and the other book is Go High - The Unstoppable Presence and Poise of Michelle Obama.

These books can bring a tear to the eye and a pang to the heartstrings, remembering that these 2 individuals actually lived their creed and values every day, and it is quite mind-boggling to realize just how low and how deeply things have fallen off the rails there.

Author Malcolm Gladwell, one of my favourites, was in town the other night to open the Toronto International Festival of authors. My morning radio host at CBC hosted the event and interviewed Gladwell. He has been playing clips from the interview the last couple of mornings. I wish I had been there (though the tickets were rather pricey and in fact, sold out quickly). But I wish, at least, that somehow, the interview would be available online. I searched but couldn't find it. Because the clips I am hearing are hilarious. He discusses twitter, and, most brilliantly, politics. Gladwell, though born in the UK, is actually Canadian. He came to Canada as a child and grew up here before moving to New York many years ago. He is very aware of what's currently going on here and made some really funny comments, comparing the 2 countries. He is such a cool guy. I have read all his books and just recently bought his newest one, Talking to Strangers. Can't wait to dive into it. I had also requested in on audiobook from the library because he always narrates his own books. But there is a massively huge line ahead of me so who knows when it will get to me.

On that same evening as Gladwell was here, I was at another author talk, with author Pico Iyer, interviewed by Canadian author/broadcaster Ian Brown. It took place at the Hot Docs Theatre, where I usually go to see documentary films. They often host author talks, as well. I had read one book by Iyer, called The Art of Stillness. He is generally known as a travel writer and has some TED Talks, too. He was quite a delight and I am happy that I went. One of the things he talked about, both in the book that I had read as well as on Monday evening, was the time he spent visiting Leonard Cohen back when Cohen was living in a monastery. And, speaking of Leonard Cohen, Canada Post just issued 3 commemorative stamps of Cohen, from 3 different ages, as a young man, middle aged and near the end of his life:


Oct 3, 12:33pm Top

>92 jessibud2: Great way to decompress Shelley.

Oct 3, 5:19pm Top

>92 jessibud2: Shelley I enjoyed reading about M. Gladwell on your thread!

Oct 4, 3:26pm Top

>92 jessibud2: We are all in need of anti-dotes, Shelley, glad Malcolm Gladwell could provide some for you.

Those stamps are a lovely tribute to Leonard Cohen!

Oct 4, 8:46pm Top

>90 jessibud2: Thanks for the Giller prize list, Shelley. Some of those look very interesting. I'll have to see how long the library lists are for them.

Too bad the tickets for the Toronto International Festival of authors are too expensive. I make it a habit to go to the Vancouver Writers' Festival each year and some of the talks are outstanding.

Oct 5, 7:32pm Top

Is 2019 over yet?

Some people, when they are overly stressed and close to the edge, go on spending binges. They buy expensive cars, or take extravagant vacations or other things they can't afford. Maybe it makes them feel better, though the bills afterwards might not. So really, I am quite ok, aren't I, if all I do to relieve stress is a little retail therapy? In a bookstore?

Today's stress relief brought me 2 books that both look great:

In Such Good Company by Carol Burnett, about her 11 years on her iconic and classic tv show. I can't think of better therapy than a little laughter, except maybe a lot of laughter! You know I'll be googling to supplement my reading of this one!

The RBG Workout by Bryant Johnson, RBG's personal trainer. In her introduction to the book, she recounts how, in 1999, she was diagnosed with colorectal cancer. It was followed by surgery, chemo and radiation, and then she met Johnson, the personal trainer who brought her strength back to her life. Then, in 2009 she was challenged again, this time by pancreatic cancer. Same regime, which left her weak and frail. Enter Johnson again.

This book looks terrific. Illustrated in graphic novel style, it shows every step of the each routine and exercise Johnson has RBG do, accompanied by short, clear instructions. Heck, if it works for Ginsburg, then maybe I have half a chance. I also started a new yoga class this week and so far, I really like the instructor, which bodes well for my sticking it out.

Stress be gone!

Now, if I can only keep the reading going....

I did get a new audiobook from the library today and have just started it: The Tattooist of Auschwitz. It says it's a novel but based on a true story. The author uses the real names of the people so I don't understand how it could be a novel but we'll see. I am also reading a lovely coffee-table type book about Canada's ice dancing sweethearts, Tessa and Scott. Now in their early 30s and retired from competitive skating, they actually have been skating together since they were 6 and 8 years old! The story is a great look at the behind the scenes of their early years, and has a ton of great photos. I really love this ice dance team and it's a pleasure to go through this.

Any Canadians here watching Battle of the Blades on CBC? I love this show and am so happy it has come back!

Oct 5, 7:51pm Top

I also saw the documentary film yesterday about Linda Ronstadt, called The Sound of My Voice. What a film and what a talent! I can't think of another artist who has mastered so many genres of music: pop, rock, country, opera, folk, Latin music. And with such a strong voice! The list of her awards is a long one. I highly recommend this if it comes your way.

She has Parkinson's now and that has affected her voice but she has a legacy of amazing work behind her and a lot of loving friends and family. Many of the people she worked with were interviewed in this film and I loved how archival footage and clips were paired with the *today* interviews. Man, they have aged!! But, yeah, so have I, and all of us. I would never in a million years have recognized the 2019 versions of Jackson Browne, Jerry Brown, David Geffen, among others.

There are a few performance videos in this very good article: https://pitchfork.com/thepitch/the-new-linda-ronstadt-documentary-proves-just-ho...

Oct 5, 7:58pm Top

Thanks, Caroline, Mary, Anita and Meg.

And Meg, the work on my backyard is finally happening. They should be starting hopefully by the end of the week. Excavation, foundation repair and waterproofing, re-grading the level of my backyard to prevent further flooding, and the tree is coming down (!). I have to dig up every plant in my garden and this is the part that really bothers me because if they had done the work back in the spring or even in the summer, when they had promised to and were supposed to, then it would be no problem to get the plants back into the ground safely. I have been promised that the work will be completed by the end of October. By then, I don't think I can replant. I am going to the garden centre tomorrow to talk with the garden experts. I have poured a ton of work, not to mention money, into my garden over the years and if I lose it all, I plan to hold the condo responsible for this because of the unnecessary delay in the work and I will try to have them reimburse me the cost of new plants, to start over in the spring. But still...!

Oct 6, 12:11am Top

Shelley, so glad that the work is starting soon in your backyard but that is horrible about digging up all your plants. Take lots of photo now before things start to happen.

Oct 6, 6:49am Top

>99 jessibud2: I am so sorry about your garden, Shelley. Builders so often don't seem to have a sense for what a garden means to people. In the backyard or our apartment complex two owners have been building attachments to their houses, they had to lay foundations, excavated a large part of the garden, cut down two trees, and the work lasted twice as long as they had said. I heard a lot of neighbours complain, we loved those trees. But now they are finally planting three new trees, and lots of climbers. All the building work is finished and the replanting is really nice to see, I hope you get there as well!

Oct 6, 11:01am Top

Happy Sunday, Shelley! I have watched 5 episodes of Country Music and it has been fantastic. This will end up being, one of the favorite Burns docs. I also picked up Horatio's Drive from the library, all thanks to you. Would you recommend The Tattooist of Auschwitz? Sounds interesting.

Now- Go find that colony of white squirrels. Grins...

Edited: Oct 6, 11:42am Top

>102 msf59: - Hi, Mark. Yes, Country Music was terrific. I just saw another documentary (see >98 jessibud2:) about Linda Ronstadt and there was some crossover with some of what was covered in Country Music. I love when that happens in my music, films and books! And, thanks to YOU, I also just picked up from the library, the dvd of Burns' Brooklyn Bridge! I may watch it tonight.

The Tattooist of Auschwitz is good so far but I am only just starting it. I had seen the book at the store but didn't buy it and when I saw it on the shelf at the library's audiobook section, I decided to grab it.

Let me know how you like Horatio's Drive. It's a short one, for Burns, but I loved it!

Oct 6, 1:03pm Top

Ooh, I want to see the Ronstat doc. I read an interview with her, discussing the film. Like many teenagers, in the 70s, I had a major crush on her and I remain a big fan of her music.

Oct 6, 1:29pm Top

>104 msf59: - There is lots of actual footage in the film of her performing, as well as talking. She was beautiful and had an amazing range, in her vocal talents. I never knew a lot of her back story. The final scene is so poignant yet she remains positive. You can see some of it in the article I linked to, above. It's a great film.

Oct 6, 5:04pm Top

>97 jessibud2: Shelley, The RBG workout just tripped into my shopping basket. Even if I can do the tiniest bit of it, it will be an improvement.

Oct 7, 12:08am Top

>99 jessibud2: Finally! It's good to see that they are going to do something before the winter starts but their timing could have been way better! I hope you are able to use the same plants again, Shelley.

Oct 7, 8:39am Top

Not to become a rival of Joe's café, but have a look at these cakes!! Book-themed cakes!


Oct 7, 2:10pm Top

>108 jessibud2: That's such a great idea! Wow...I'd have a squintillion-tiered cake if I just limited it to really great books I've read. And he'd have to be quick with the elbows to get so much as a look-in.

Hm. Maybe best not to try this....

Oct 7, 3:13pm Top

>108 jessibud2: Brilliant Shelley.

Oct 7, 4:45pm Top

>106 Caroline_McElwee: - I am enjoying looking through it, Caroline. I love the little boxes of info, *asides* and tips, that Johnson includes in addition to the actual exercises. I am starting at the beginning and I think I will try to set myself a goal of doing each exercise for a couple of days before moving sequentially to the next one. I already do some of them, so I may be able to move more quickly but honestly, the woman is in her mid-80s, and is doing planks, for goodness sake! I can't imagine myself getting to that, ever!

Edited: Oct 7, 4:51pm Top

>107 Familyhistorian: - I spent a few hours this afternoon digging up just about every plant in the garden, putting them on pots with extra soil, watering and moving them to my neighbour's back deck (with her permission!). About to jump into a shower...

>109 richardderus: - This is from the Cakes Wrecks site, Richard. Most of the time, cakes at that site are hilariously *off*, if you get my drift. In fact, I recently found a book from that site on the sale table at my favourite used book stores. You should check out the site for a lot of good snark and laughs!

>110 Caroline_McElwee: - It really is, isn't it?

Oct 7, 7:01pm Top

Ooo, that was fun, looking at the book-themed cakes, Shelley. Maybe they'll post something like that at that book cafe you mentioned!

Oct 7, 7:29pm Top


Canada has its federal elections in just 2 weeks. I hate this time of year: ugly lawn signs popping up like weeds, far too many political put-down commercials on tv where the candidates do nothing more than try to out-trash the opponents instead of focussing on what they intend to do for US, the people they are actually working for.

Well, tonight I decided to try to watch the leaders debate on tv. It started at 7 pm. I have lasted all of 15 minutes and am already yelling at the tv. What is wrong with these morons??

I would not permit or tolerate such behaviour of talking over one another constantly, and interrupting, etc, in my class of 7-year-olds. Why is it permitted and tolerated in so-called adults who ought to be trying to be role models for what a leader should be? And why isn't the moderator doing her job and stopping idiot Bernier every time he interrupts (he is a right-wing nutjob, who is anti everything, and sounds like a French version of trump). There needs to be consequences: you had your turn, and one more interruption and you are gone.

I am reminded of why I never watch these dumb debates.

I have turned off the tv and will turn it back on only to watch Jeopardy. So much more civilized.

End of rant.

Oct 7, 8:12pm Top

Loved the book cakes and completely agree with you on the pre-election ridiculousness. No t.v. for moi.

Edited: Oct 8, 7:23pm Top

Just wanted to add here that, in reference to my comments about author Malcolm Gladwell, in >92 jessibud2:, I did end up finding a clip from the conversation he had with CBC radio host Matt Galloway. Matt hosted the opening evening of the International Festival of Authors and sat down to chat (on stage) with Gladwell about his new book, Talking to Strangers. This is one of several funny segments he has shared on the morning show over the week. This episode illustrates why talking to strangers can be so rewarding! And Gladwell is just so Gladwell! :-)


Oct 8, 9:40pm Top

Shelley I just picked up Talking to Strangers today from the library so very interested to listen to the cbc inteview. Thanks for posting it! Off to our first puppy class tonight. It should be ....interesting!

Oct 9, 12:12am Top

Like you, I can hardly stand to watch debates between our politicians. I understand how important it is for them to go toe-to-toe and for voters to hear their views and perspectives but most of them are so juvenile I just can't tolerate it.

Oct 9, 7:55am Top

>117 mdoris: - I bought a copy of it at Costco, where it was discounted. But I am on the wait list for the audiobook version at the library. He is a fave of mine.

>118 EBT1002: - Part of what I can't stand about the debates is that the so-called moderators don't set ground rules about civility and speaking one at a time. Every person get a turn, ONE AT A TIME. If they did set the rules and enforce them, the so-called wannabe *leaders* might actually rise to the occasion and behave like grownups. It's really hard, at least for me, to focus on the issues, the important stuff, when I can't hear anything they are saying, or when all I seem to hear is shouting and trash talk. It's just so disrespectful and so disappointing, especially from people who really ought to be setting a higher bar.

Oct 10, 1:26pm Top

I only lasted for about a minute of the debate. Kudos to you for lasting 15 minutes, Shelley. I don't really know what the various party platforms are. Not that it matters as most of them don't pan out anyway.

Loved the cakes, those were amazing and the Gladwell clip was a good one. I was trolling through a bookstore last night killing time before the BC Genealogy Society meeting when I saw Jann Arden on the cover of Chatelaine. I had to pick it up. She is featured in an article on aging along with several other women. Funny thing is that the majority of the women are in their 40s.

Oct 11, 10:59am Top

I have already been out to vote this morning and home again. Today was the first day of early voting and I was in and out and home in 5 minutes. The sanest way to do it. What I really wish is that the Greens and the NDP would have joined forces and run as one party. They are actually aligned on many issues and I think they would have been stronger together and would have gained a lot of support that will otherwise be split between the two, thus weakening both against the major two. Together they could have been a powerful third party in Ottawa and we really need that this time. It's all really so very discouraging.

I also saw the Chatelaine cover with Jann. Not the most flattering pic of her, to be honest, but the article is very good.

Oct 12, 12:40pm Top

Grant Snider's *The Book Fair*. So much great visual (and literary!) humour. I can't decide which is my favourite though I do love the Plot Swings and Eric Carle's roller coaster

Oct 12, 3:02pm Top

>121 jessibud2: In and out in 5 minutes sounds great, Shelley. Much better than the half hour I spent waiting in line to cast my vote. It would have been faster to wait for the day.

Not the most faltering photo of Jann Arden but probably one taken with the theme of age in mind.

Oct 12, 8:15pm Top

Happy Thanksgiving to you Shelley. I voted yesterday too but it took over an hour. Lots of people turning out to the advance polls here.

Oct 12, 9:52pm Top

>124 mdoris: - And to you, Mary.

This afternoon I saw a great film. It was, I believe, actually broadcast on CBC tv last year, and this one-time showing of the film at my local doc theatre was a great treat, as I missed watching it then. It was called Joni 75 - A Celebration, celebrating Joni Mitchell's 75th birthday last November.

It was basically a tribute show, with a wide range of performers each singing (or interpreting) one or two of Joni's songs. The performers included the amazing Diana Krall, Norah Jones, Seal, Rufus Wainwright, Los Lobos, Chaka Khan, Emmylou Harris, James Taylor, Graham Nash and Kris Kristofferson, and probably some others I am forgetting. Wonderful as they all were (and they were!), I have to admit that there were probably more songs performed that I was unfamiliar with than there were familiar ones. Not that it mattered; it was all good.

I was stunned to see that Kristofferson was led out by another performer (whose name escapes me at the moment). She sang with him for part of their song. I thought for sure he was blind but after they were finished, I think he isn't blind, but, from some comments made, is perhaps having memory issues. After very recently watching the Ken Burns documentary on Country Music, where quite an in-depth profile of Kristofferson was presented, with no mention (that I can recall) of any mental issues, I had to google when I got home. All I could find was an article from 3 years ago that says he had been treated for Alzheimer's and depression for years until the doctors decided to do a test for Lyme disease and it came back positive. Once that was discovered and began to be treated, he had a remarkable turnaround in his memory but it's clear that it is not really *cured*. Wow. And he is 83 years old! That was a shock to me.

Anyhow, this was a lovely way to spend a Saturday afternoon!

Oct 12, 10:05pm Top

Happy Thanksgiving Shelley.

I still like to play some of my old Joni Mitchell songs regularly.

Oct 12, 10:24pm Top

Thank you Paul. Does your neck of the woods have Thanksgiving or an equivalent?

Oct 12, 10:43pm Top

>119 jessibud2: I agree completely, Shelley. It all ends up feeling like so much showpersonship. I hate it.

Oct 13, 10:22am Top

Happy Thanksgiving!

Oct 13, 7:31pm Top

>129 richardderus: - Thank you, Richard.

I saw the film *Judy* this afternoon. I knew about Garland's addictions but had no idea she was so abused and manipulated as a child. Louis B Mayer was a monster and the most tragic thing is that she had no one to look out for her and protect her. No wonder she ended up as she did. Renee Zellweger did all her own singing in this film and she was excellent. It won't surprise me if she is nominated (and even wins) an Oscar for this. It was a well-done but devastatingly sad movie.

Oct 13, 8:36pm Top

Happy Thanksgiving!

I also voted. No line at all.

Oct 13, 8:56pm Top

>131 figsfromthistle: - And Happy Thanksgiving to you, too, Anita.

Oct 13, 9:09pm Top

Stopping by to wish you a Happy Sukkot. I'll be keeping an eye on your thread to find out more about your elections. *sigh*

Oct 14, 9:20am Top

Happy Thanksgiving, Shelley.

That story of Judy Garland fits with what I read in Finding Dorothy, where the wife of Wizard of Oz author L. Frank Baum saw JG had no protection on the set of that movie, and tried to help her.

Edited: Oct 14, 1:51pm Top

>133 SqueakyChu: - And to you, Madeline! As for the election, one week from today. Heaven help us. If Scheer gets in, I may punch something. BLECH

>134 jnwelch: - I do remembering hearing some buzz about that book, Joe, though I have not read it. The movie was good, though. I would like to believe there are more protections for children in the film and theatre industry these days but who really knows. As the MeToo movement has shown us, exploitation is alive and well, unfortunately.

Oct 14, 12:44pm Top

>135 jessibud2:

...and, alas, i cannot offer you a happy alternative here in my country. :(

Oct 14, 3:59pm Top

>125 jessibud2: I love Kristopherson's voice. Sorry to hear he has had health problems, but I'd have not guessed his age either Shelley.

Oct 16, 10:11am Top

>135 jessibud2: I have my fingers crossed that the Conservatives don't win again, Shelley. I don't like the promises they are making to give everybody money back that just means they won't be investing in any of the things we need. Besides, I had enough of them being in power when Harper was the head.

Oct 16, 10:39am Top

Happy Wednesday, Shelley. I finally finished Country Music. I truly loved it. I appreciate the nudge. I still have Horatios Drive to get to. Maybe next week. Hope all is well.

Edited: Oct 16, 11:54am Top

>139 msf59: - Mark, I just posted on your thread! Horatio's Drive is much shorter, though. I think, if I remember correctly, that it may be only one disc, maybe 2.

>138 Familyhistorian: - Meg, it's a scary prospect isn't it, that Scheer might win? Although, I am impressed that Singh is gaining more than I had expected. I don't believe he would win, outright, but if he comes on strong, and there is a minority govt, he could prove to be a very important third party and if the Conservatives win, we will need that. Frankly, even if Liberals win, we will need that! And although none of the leaders would touch the topic in the debate, that insane racist law in Quebec (Bill 21) might have a chance of getting reversed or dropped if Singh were in power, don't you think? How that law came to pass at all in Canada, is just beyond belief. It smacks of such *trumpian* values, if you can call them *values*. It feels so wrong for our country. I am actually surprised that it didn't come up in the debates.

Edited: Oct 20, 1:04pm Top

I am not generally a big poetry fan but there are, of course, exceptions. This morning, on CBC radio, the host interviewed a British poet who had me laughing out loud. Worth it to listen to the entire interview; his last piece is especially clever, but all are quite brilliant:


As well, Enright (the host) also had a lovely tribute to the late Harold Bloom:


Oct 22, 7:01am Top

Hi, Shelley! Glad to hear you are a Harry bliss fan. He, reliably puts a smile on my face. I did watch Horatio's Drive last night. It was very good. I wish Burns would do smaller projects like this too. So many unknown stories to tell, out there. Thanks for putting it on my radar.

Oct 22, 8:54am Top

Well, we have a minority Liberal government- thank goodness the Conservatives didn't win!

Edited: Oct 22, 9:16am Top

>142 msf59: - You may have been the one to have first put Bliss on MY radar, Mark, so thanks! I love his kind of humour. And I am happy to hear that you liked Horatio's Drive. I have decided to work my way through as many of Burns' docs as my library can get for me. I really enjoyed Brooklyn Bridge last week and Not for Ourselves Alone is on its way to my library for me right now, while Statue of Liberty is still on hold until my turn comes up. This man is pure genius on so many levels, intellectual, artistic, social, ethical, etc.

>143 torontoc: - Well, Cyrel, it sure could have been worse. I am actually really surprised and disappointed that Singh didn't do better. I knew NDP could never win outright but a strong NDP, to me, would have been so important, no matter who won. It sure looked like he would. But I am EXTREMELY relieved that Scheer is not in power this morning.

It was such an ugly, childish, disrespectful and disappointing campaign and it looks like nothing is changing. I am shocked about the Bloc in Quebec. Why were they even running federally? They don't care about CANADA, only Quebec. At least that nut-job Bernier is gone. And though I find myself disappointed in Trudeau these last months, especially after the SNC-Lavalin affair, it brings me great relief that he is still our leader. I sure hope he has learned something from all this and can rise to the challenges that face him.

I did not watch anything last night, except Jeopardy. I wanted to be able to sleep. I heard the news when I woke up this morning.

Oct 22, 9:38am Top

We are also pleased that Trudeau won. I hope he proves, that Canada made the right choice.

Oct 22, 9:43am Top

>145 msf59: - Thanks, Mark. Me too.

Oct 22, 9:49am Top

>144 jessibud2: A good result for sanity in government. Congratulations to Canada as a whole for its failure to follow the US down the rabbit hole.

Oct 22, 11:38am Top

Well, I'm relieved that Trudeau maintained power, and I'm not even Canadian. I have no intention of following our USA election returns in November, 2020. At this time, I can't think of a more stressful thing to do,

Edited: Oct 23, 12:33pm Top

I'm back after reading an article in The Washington Post about the Canadian election. Let's see if I understand this correctly. Six parties won seats. Trudeau lost the popular vote so there is the possibility that his government will fall before the end of his term based on past history of Canadian governments.

Do you then have in Canada what is equivalent to our electoral college in the US? How do you and other Canadians feel about that? In the US, liberals want to do away with the electoral college. That's how 45 got into office (and one of the Bushes as well).

What's with the Quebecois party? I know they are separatists, but were they mostly with the Liberal party before?

I feel the deep divides you have in your country as similar to what we have in the US. It seems as if more rural folks tend to be conservative, and city folks tend to be liberal. Do you have the same rage between the liberals and conservatives in Canada as we have in the US?

Why does Trudeau support pipelines if he is concerned about the environment, or is he not that concerned?

Are you following the Israeli elections? What do you think of what's happening now? I'm sure my secular Israeli family is happy, but my religious Israeli friends and family are not.

ETA: Yikes! I can't escape to Canada or Israel or UK. Where can I go?!

Edited: Oct 24, 6:53pm Top

Oh, it's all so complicated.

Trudeau won with a minority govt which does mean he could possibly not last the full term, if the other parties and his Liberals can't manage to get along on certain issues. And, if the ugly campaign mud-slinging was any preview, I can't envision that happening. One of Trudeau's campaign promises of his first election, 4 years ago, was electoral reform. That never happened and that, among other things, especially during this last year, really pushed him off the pedestal for many people. Sure, he is human - and he is, after all, also a politician - but I have to say, it did surprise me that he got in this time. He was full of contradictions. I was so sure Andrew Scheer, the smarmy Conservative candidate, would prevail. I guess enough people voted Liberal (as I did 4 years ago) in a desperate, strategic voting attempt at *anything-but-Conservative*. My own values and beliefs have always aligned with the NDP (New Democratic Party) but I have often voted Liberal for just those reasons. This time, I voted with my heart, NDP, and frankly was shocked that they did so poorly. As for the Bloc Quebecois, they are a freaking Separatist party! Why they were even running federally, when they care not a whit about Canada, only about Quebec, is unfathomable. The Conservative party is official called the PC party, Progressive Conservatives. Personally, I think they ought to change their name to the RCs, Repressive Conservatives. They are so anti-everything, taking a page out of the trump and ford books of ethics. UGH. Nothing in this world could ever persuade me to cast my ballots for such disgraceful people.

I have never understood your electoral college, no matter how many times it has been explained to me so I can't answer that part of your question. All I know is that our current situation sucks (I really hate that word).

I am not really following the Israeli elections, other than the sound bytes I hear on the news, when I watch or listen to it (which is less and less these days). But I really don't like or trust Netanyahu, that much I know. I know nothing about any of the other players there, though. I have recently been in touch with my cousins there but we don't discuss politics, mostly just my mom's health.

Where is my cave??!

I do have to say, I am pleased that our elections are getting *some* coverage in the States. It always seems that trump sucks all the air out of the room and leaves little room for much else in the world, unless it involves him. At least he didn't interfere in OUR elections (that we know of, lol)

Oct 23, 1:46pm Top

>150 jessibud2: Amanda Coletta, freelance reporter, wrote the article about the Canadian elections. I just happened by chance to find it on page 14 of the paper. I'm not sure how many people dive that far into the paper. :D

Since the Israeli election, Netanyahu failed to form a coalition government so now it's Benny Gantz's chance to attempt to do so. If he cannot form one, then Israel will need to hold yet another election.

Oct 28, 1:18pm Top

>149 SqueakyChu: >150 jessibud2:

While we would love to adopt Justin Trudeau's Health Care and Military plans,
we still wish the kind man would bring an end to the Seal Hunts.

Any progress in that direction?

Oct 28, 6:48pm Top

>152 m.belljackson: - Much as I am for environmental issues and much as I care about and want to protect animals, I think the seal hunt is the least of Trudeau's worries or challenges at the moment.

Oct 29, 9:58am Top

Yes, he has to do something about the West -East divide in the country.

Edited: Oct 29, 7:32pm Top

Shelley, are you a short story reader? i just discovered The Journey Prize editions that are published annually for newly discovered writers. I had never heard of these editions. I was on the CBC books and looking at prize winners and was interested in Five Wives by Joan Thomas (a novel). She has had stories published in many year editions of the Journey Prize collections. Have you read anything by her?

The novel Five Wives won the 2019 Governor General's Literary Award for fiction.

Oct 30, 12:20am Top

>140 jessibud2: Looks like we squeaked through that one, Shelley. I didn't watch the election returns because I was working at the polls for the election and we didn't know what was going on except in our one poll when we counted out after 7 pm. We'll see how it all plays out.

Did they finish the work on your foundation?

Oct 30, 11:55am Top

>153 jessibud2:

Okay, I'll write to him again, ask if he could at least set up a Committee,
and include Einstein's quote.

Oct 31, 11:57am Top

Edited: Nov 1, 10:22am Top

Well, not to whinge too much but this has just been the year that won't end...

The work on my foundation BEGAN last week. Yes, the problem of the cracked foundation that was discovered in January has only just begun to be addressed. That I haven't developed an ulcer from this alone, I think I must be invincible. Don't ask...

They dug 7 feet down in my backyard at the window wells, and found the crack, repaired it (I hope!!). That took a couple of days. Then another company came for a few days to begin to dig a swale (new word for me; apparently, it's a shallow ditch to help redirect water away from the house to prevent further flooding) behind my property line. They had to stop for a few days as it started to rain hard. Then, on Monday of this week, the tree cutters arrived. Only, someone (condo board or property manager, doesn't much matter which as they are all pretty incompetent, as far as I'm concerned), failed to tell the yard guys, who had left all sorts of wires (cables for tv etc) exposed on the ground. We had the necessary permit from the city to remove the massive tree whose roots had caused the foundation crack, so they began the task of cutting it down. The couldn't do it all Monday so returned Tuesday. I went out for a total of 2 hours to run some errands and when I returned around noon, I had no internet, no landline phone and no tv. Everything was dead. When I asked the tree cutters if they had touched the exposed wires, they said they didn't think so but if they had, it was the other company's fault for leaving them exposed. You will pardon my sarcasm here but of course it is. Isn't everything ALWAYS the other guy's fault?

And, in this large city of Toronto, my service provider (Rogers, one of the largest, a rival of Bell) was unable to find a single technician available until today. So, about an hour or so ago, in the pouring rain, with my half dug-up backyard pretty much a swamp, the technician installed a temporary cable and everything is working again. He said he'd be back in approximately 5 weeks to permanently rebury the wires properly.

Being unplugged isn't the worst thing. I read 2 books. And I napped and I went to yoga. My friend also helped me move every single one of the plants from my back garden (they had been dug up, placed in pots with soil, and stored on my next-door neighbour's deck, thinking I would get them back into the ground before the frost) to her empty garage to overwinter because I was informed last week also that the board had decided not to do the re-grading of my back yard until spring in order to make sure the waterproofing of the foundation can stand up to the weather of the harsh winter. Fair enough but if it had all been done last spring, or even summer, as originally promised, then I wouldn't have had the risk of losing my entire garden to frost or at all. At least now, I can hope that by overwintering the plants in a garage, they may stand a chance of surviving.

It feels like it's a fiasco a week around here. Can't wait to see what next week brings.

Ok, end of rant. Yoga breaths...…….

Edited: Oct 31, 6:42pm Top

>155 mdoris: - Mary, I am not much of a fan of short stories. And I have been totally out of the loop this week due to being disconnected. I see in my inbox that I have my weekly CBC Books newsletter but haven't got to it yet.

Oct 31, 6:07pm Top

>159 jessibud2:. Yeesh. Excellent rant, but how frustrating! I hope your plants make it through okay, and the foundation waterproofing holds up.

Oct 31, 7:25pm Top

Have any Canadian LTers been following the cbc program Battle of the Blades? Tonight is the grand finale where the winners will be announced and I have loved every minute of this show. I have been voting for the team of Kaitlyn Weaver and Sheldon Kennedy though all 3 final teams are terrific. This show teams one pro hockey player with one pro figure skater, and as teams, they perform a new program each week. One team gets voted off each week, as guest judges and the online voting public weigh in. It's such great entertainment and they are all skating for a charity of their choice.


Nov 1, 11:29am Top

>159 jessibud2: I need a nap after just reading that Shelley. Let's hope the final two months of the year are less fraught.

Nov 1, 12:26pm Top

Shellley, breathe in, breathe out...sorry for your continuing garden/landscape troubles and very glad that you have a plan B for your wonderful plants.

Nov 1, 4:54pm Top

>159 jessibud2: What a horror! I hope there's an end in sight even if it's next year. You do have one thing in your favor, though, The Canadian elections are over! :D

Nov 1, 5:51pm Top

>159 jessibud2: So sorry, Shelley, I hope your plants survive.

Nov 3, 7:52am Top

>159 jessibud2:

Sorry to hear about all the backyard mess fiasco! It is nice of your neighbor to store your plants in her garage. I am sure, they will make it till spring :)

Edited: Nov 3, 12:44pm Top

Thanks for commiserating, Joe, Caroline, Mary, Madeline, Anita and Anita. It is what it is, since there really isn't much in my control in any of it. I am trying very hard to use yoga breaths and direct my stress into more productive areas of my life. At least, I should be. Like, cleaning out closets, decluttering, reading (YES! reading!), etc. Some people turn to drink, food or drugs when stress takes over their lives to the extent it has, mine, this year. I, on the other hand - apart from cookies - have been indulging in completely unnecessary (and probably out of control) retail therapy at the bookshops (including, thankfully, discount places like Value Village and LFLs). When I plan to read them all and where I plan to put them all, seems not to have factored into the act at all. I suppose I could have worse vices. But still, I am aware of what I am doing, and why, even if I have not been able to rein it in. Oh well. It is what it is.....

I have also been trying to select the thinnest, shortest books on my shelf, for the most part, just to keep my numbers going. These choices, at least in my mind, allow me to start and finish the books I pick up. I think I have abandoned more books this year than in previous memory, possibly because my attention span is shot to hell this year.

I had mentioned somewhere that I had decided to try to work my way through as many of filmmaker Ken Burns' documentaries as my library could get for me. Yesterday, I watch and loved one called Not For Ourselves Alone, the story of the 50 plus year friendship of Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony, the two women suffragettes most responsible for making it possible for women to get the vote. I loved the absolute coincidence that the opening narrative of the dvd put out there: that on November 2, 1920, women in the United States cast their ballots for the first time. I was watching this yesterday, November 2, 2019, 99 years to the day. The back story of each of these women, separately and what they accomplished together, was fascinating. I also love the dvds because there seems always to be an interview with Burns and his crew at the end. He said that both he and his co-producer, Paul Barnes, were astounded that neither of them had ever heard of Elizabeth Cady Stanton before, and felt outraged that their story had literally been written out of the history books, when it is probably one of the most important stories of the history of the United States. They decided without hesitation to do something about that. This film is excellent.

I have 2 more Burns' docs on hold for me at the library.

Nov 3, 8:19pm Top

I am not a Margaret Atwood fan at all and I honestly have no interest in seeing this documentary but I was just looking at the schedule for November at my local doc cinema and noticed this new doc. Atwood fans here on LT might want to take note and keep an eye out for it:


Nov 3, 9:34pm Top

>168 jessibud2: Hope that the back yard gets settled quickly.

>169 jessibud2: She's not my favourite either.

Nov 4, 8:32am Top

Kudos to you, Shelley, for your Ken Burns viewing project. I hadn't even heard of Not For Ourselves Alone. It hadn't sunk in before that the 2020 elections will be the centennial for women's voting rights in the U.S. How appropriate.

Nov 4, 11:41pm Top

Shelley, I'm so sorry to read about the foundation woes. It just sounds frustrating -- and SO out of your control! I hate that feeling of helplessness.

The documentary Not For Ourselves Alone sounds really interesting; I had not heard of that. I will see if our little local library has it.

Nov 6, 8:16am Top

Hi Shelley!

Your foundation/yard issues sound typical to me - all major projects we've had done around here are one step forward, one step back, a crazy dance (cable cutting in your case), then repeat one step forward one step back. It sounds like the right foundation-type things are being done, and I'm sorry for the delay and having to overwinter your plants.

I have also been trying to select the thinnest, shortest books on my shelf, for the most part, just to keep my numbers going. I did that at the end of last year to get in the last 3 books to meet my goal of 105. Three books combined for 277 pages! It was really too much, so I backed off to 100 for this year.

Deep yoga breaths...

Nov 6, 10:37am Top

Oh my heck. House-fixing issues are The Worst! It's the utter helplessness, the inability to affect the outcome or effect the repair, that's so maddening to me.

So glad I live in a managed building. Sending soothing success-whammys your way.

Edited: Nov 7, 6:50am Top

Thanks, Paul, Joe Ellen, Karen, and Richard.

They say we will get snow tonight and into tomorrow. That's ok, it won't be much and it is November, after all. I do worry a bit, though because one of the companies came back today to replace the inserts in my window wells to high ones because once they re-grade the yard, the land will be higher than the window wells and that can't happen. Problem is, the window well covers I have don't seem to fit to cover the well. I have no idea how that can happen. They raised the height of the inserts, not the width and the covers fit before. Oy.

And, as if this isn't enough, the headaches from Montreal with my mother and her evil husband continue. My brother and I have a lawyer involved and things are heating up.

It never ends.....

This is so NOT how I intended to spend my retirement! I take a handful of those whammys, Richard! Thanks!

Nov 7, 9:09am Top

It did snow and I am getting out my boots! Sorry about the headaches!

Nov 7, 5:02pm Top

>176 torontoc: - I wore boots (and mittens!) today when I was out but in truth, I love the first snowfall. This one was light and pretty and gone by the afternoon! As it should be. There is still snow on the remaining plants in the front but that's ok.

Nov 8, 12:31am Top

Sorry to hear about your long drawn out house repairs, Shelley. So typical of how house repairs go. I didn't realize that your mother's husband was still in the picture. Good luck with that situation.

Nov 8, 5:35am Top

>159 jessibud2: Yikes!! I think it is a good thing you know how to do yoga breaths.

>175 jessibud2: And more trouble. Sorry. Hang in there!

Nov 8, 7:53am Top

This is so NOT how I intended to spend my retirement!

I know what you mean. My husband got laid off 3 1/2 months after I retired and didn't find another job for 9 months. During that time my mother died and I was executor of her estate. Problems with BiL over money over settling Mom's estate, and we're still not talking. However, things settled down, and I hope they do soon for you too. Let the lawyer worry about the husband as long as your mother is safe and being taken care of.

Hang in there.

Nov 8, 8:50am Top

>180 karenmarie: - Yes, I know things will eventually settle down though that day is beyond where I can see from here. For now, the issue of my mother being safe and taken care of is the very crux of what we are fighting about. Her husband is not fit yet he thinks he is. For him, it's all about control. Her needs are secondary, for him and that is simply not acceptable to me. There are so many layers of ugliness in this living hell and sadly, I have little faith in the justice system. Our lawyer is a good person and is prioritizing our case but it all boils down to a judge's decision. There are good judges and not so good ones, and with the way our luck has gone these last 2 years, I have a growing knot in the pit of my stomach that, I suppose, is preparing me for the worst. The pessimist in me has learned to expect the worst, and hopefully, be pleasantly surprised. To expect the best and be crushed, is not my preferred approach. Maybe not the best attitude but I need to protect myself, too, on some level. I may have to make an emergency trip to Mtl next week to appear before a judge. Shudder.

I have no experience dealing with a person like this man my mother unfortunately married. She deserves so much better. People make mistakes and this one was a biggie. But it was her life and you know what they say (about books and people!), there's no accounting for taste. And now we are stuck dealing with the fallout. If we lose this round, I will not give up. I am resourceful and I will figure out something else, some other way to solve this problem. Meantime, I have a voodoo doll. It currently looks like a porcupine....

Nov 8, 8:20pm Top

Oh Shelley, this sounds like BIG trouble and stressful to the max. My fingers are very crossed for you for a good resolution and I think it's great and impressive your determination and fighting spirit. Hang in there!

Nov 8, 9:47pm Top


You left the door to your country open again and all the awful penetrating wet-cold fell on us.

Please come and fetch it back above the 49th parallel where it belongs. Thank you for your earliest attention to this matter.

Edited: Nov 8, 10:11pm Top

>182 mdoris: - Thanks, Mary. I am trying very hard to stay focussed on what I *can* control and not let the things I can't, get the better of me. Easier said than done, truth be told...

>183 richardderus: - Ahem right back atcha, Sir. Did you not notice my response to your question over on Mark's thread? You asked on whom you should lay blame and I thought my answer was most appropriate...;-) (evil cackle...)

Nov 8, 10:11pm Top

I just watched a fantastic and delightful DVD I borrowed from the library. It's called *Birding: The Central Park Effect*. I found it when searching the library site for the Ken Burns film of Central Park (which I will pick up tomorrow!). It's one hour long and really good. Several people are interviewed throughout the film and one of them is author Jonathan Franzen. In the extras at the end of the dvd, there are extended interviews with a few of these folks, including Franzen.

I have never been to Central Park but I would absolutely love to go. And if I ever do, it will be during the short window of either spring or fall migration.

The downy woodpecker has been a daily visitor to my feeder for a couple of weeks already and today I had the rare pleasure of having 2 large, loud and gorgeous blue jays stop by. I often hear them but they don't visit very often.

Nov 8, 10:28pm Top

Hi, Shelley, I also really enjoyed The Central Park Effect. I just wish it would have been longer. I did not know that Ken Burns had a Central Park doc out. I will have to look for it.

And hooray for the woodpeckers and blue jays.

Edited: Nov 9, 9:56am Top

You just mentioned Central Park which reminded me of a book I’m reading now which I think you’d love. I do. It’s called Humans of New York and is a book of photography of people in New York City. Each photo has a blurb with it or just the place where the photo was taken. It’s based on a blog of the same name. The people in the pictures are so varied and so...well, New York. Look for it.

{{{Hugs}}} for all the trying situations you’re dealing with now! *sigh*

Nov 9, 9:59am Top

>181 jessibud2: It's too bad that this man won't go away. You're fighting the good fight, and I hope it does resolve happily. I understand your not wanting to put too much faith in the system.

>184 jessibud2: I saw your response on Mark’s thread. I agree! Your answer was most appropriate. *smile*

Nov 9, 7:20pm Top

>187 SqueakyChu: - Thanks Madeline. I will look for that one! And thanks for the hugs. Much appreciated (and needed)

I was mistaken about the Central Park dvd today. The Ken Burns dvd I have on hold is the one on the Statue of Liberty. I can't seem to find the Central Park one in our library system but I will ask them to see if they can get hold of it. I did pick up another dvd: Simon and Garfunkel: the concert in Central Park. :-) Also, a really lovely children's book about the park called The Man Who Made Parks. It is written by Frieda Wishinsky, born in New York but lives now in Toronto, and lushly illustrated by Song Nan Zhang, born in China and now living in Montreal! I don't think I knew that. I also did not know that Olmstead also designed many other parks around North America, including the beautiful Mount Royal in Montreal! I love going up there, and have, since I was a child. There is little man-made pond at the top called Beaver Lake (though why, I don't know; in summer there used to be swans swimming in it!). In winter, we would skate on it or toboggan down the hills. Anyhow, this is a lovely intro to a really important, talented and inspired man. I am going to seek out other, adult bios of him.

Nov 9, 7:41pm Top

>189 jessibud2: I loved that Simon and Garfunkel concert when I first watched it.

Have a lovely weekend, Shelley.

Edited: Yesterday, 6:49am Top

Well, I just finished watching the dvd of The Concert in Central Park. It was an fantastic trip down memory lane for me and just the thing I needed right now. I was smiling from the first song. Paul Simon was, and remains, my number 1 favourite singer/songwriter of all time and the truth is, his voice and lyricism hold up, all these years later. I realize that the concert took place in September of 1981, and the live album was released in 1982, but *attending* the concert tonight I felt the years melt away. I would have to go look it up now, if I could find my high school yearbooks, but I used a Paul Simon lyric as my quote in one of the yearbooks.

His ability to use language to tell a story in such a short format as a 3 or 4 minute song, is astounding. He really is a genius when it comes to writing. His lyricism is second to none and, funny how the brain works when it comes to music, I was able to sing along to every single song they played for an hour and a half. Every single word, every single song.

Watching this concert (over 500,000 in attendance on the grass of Central Park), was almost like watching a grown-up, more civilized Woodstock. Great music, many in the audience up and dancing to the more rollicking songs (Me & Julio, Kodachrome, 59th Street Bridge Song (aka Feelin' Groovy). But everyone was attentive and rapt during the quieter songs, and still, singing along. And you could hear every word (unlike some rock concerts, where it is impossible to hear a thing over the shouting or screaming or the band). The back-up players for this concert (2 saxophonists, 2 trumpeters, 2 drummers, 2 keyboarders, and a few guitarists) were outstanding, as well. I have actually seen Paul Simon perform live 3 times and he is very savvy and excellent in his choice of backup musicians.

I think I am going to have to buy this dvd. I already own several S&G albums as well as several solo albums by each of them. This will just have to be added to the collection.

Nov 9, 11:22pm Top

>191 jessibud2: Glad to see you enjoyed it so much. Got me listening to it again on my spotify.

Yesterday, 7:48am Top

>192 PaulCranswick: - After watching it last night, I turned to google. I found this article, so coincidentally, about Bridge Over Troubled Water being recorded exactly 50 years ago yesterday. This is the second time in around a week that I have had this coincidence (see >168 jessibud2:). The irony, of course, is that it's Garfunkel and his incredible voice, that is the solo in this song.


Simon's extraordinary talent, I think, comes from his ability to not only tell a great story, but also his seeming ease to be sombre, funny, philosophical, charming. He just doesn't ever stay in one genre; no one trick pony, that Paul Simon (pun intended).

And I found it interesting, too, that at different ages and stages in my life, different songs of his resonate for me. Last night, the lyrics to Slip Slidin' Away really hit me in the gut:

Slip slidin' away
Slip slidin' away
You know the nearer your destination
The more you're slip slidin' away

Yesterday, 8:02am Top

I hear the drizzle of the rain,
Like a memory it falls;
Soft and warm, continuing
Tapping on my roof and walls.

From the shelter of my mind,
Through the windows of my eyes
I gaze beyond the rain drenched streets
To England where my heart lies.

(Kathy's Song)

Pure poetry and certainly imbued my own thoughts as I read The Secret Garden with the rain streaming down my window pane as I glance up to view the tropical city-scape.

Edited: Yesterday, 8:20am Top

Yes, that's definitely another one I have always loved and that is stunning.

And here, from An American Tune:

Many is the time I've been mistaken
And many times confused
Yes, and I've often felt forsaken
And certainly misused.
Oh, but I'm all right, I'm all right
I'm just weary to my bones
Still, you don't expect to be bright and bon vivant
So far away from home - so far away from home.
I don't know a soul who's not been battered
I don't have a friend who feels at ease
I don't know a dream that's not been shattered
Or driven to it's knees
Oh, but it's all right, it's all right
We've lived so well, so long
Still, when I think of the road we're travelling on
I wonder what's gone wrong
I can't help it, I wonder what's gone wrong.

Click on the youtube box to watch them perform it:


Yesterday, 7:50pm Top

Well, that was a pleasant distraction. Thanks for posting the Simon and Garfunkel links, Shelley. My thoughts and hopes are with you as you deal with your mom's situation.

Today, 8:48am Top

Loving the S & G discussion and song lyrics. I remember enjoying that Central Park concert on tv, too.

I've always had a soft spot for "America".

"Let us be lovers, we'll marry our fortunes together
I've got some real estate here in my bag"
So we bought a pack of cigarettes and Mrs. Wagner pies
And walked off to look for America

"Kathy," I said as we boarded a Greyhound in Pittsburgh
"Michigan seems like a dream to me now"
It took me four days to hitchhike from Saginaw
I've come to look for America

Laughing on the bus
Playing games with the faces
She said the man in the gabardine suit was a spy
I said "Be careful, his bowtie is really a camera"

"Toss me a cigarette, I think there's one in my raincoat"
"We smoked the last one an hour ago"
So I looked at the scenery, she read her magazine
And the moon rose over an open field

"Kathy, I'm lost," I said, though I knew she was sleeping
"I'm empty and aching and I don't know why"
Counting the cars on the New Jersey Turnpike
They've all come to look for America
All come to look for America
All come to look for America

Today, 9:31am Top

>196 Familyhistorian: - Thanks, Meg.

>19 FAMeulstee: - Hi, Joe. America is one of those songs I was referring to when I said how incredible Simon is at telling an entire story within a 3 or 4 minute song. He performed this one too, in the concert. Every song they sang was, in my mind, at that moment, the best, until the next one, and the next one and the next one. I would be hard pressed to name just *one* favourite. It changes with my mood.

Today, 9:37am Top

Morning, Shelley. Happy Remembrance Day! Snowing here. Probably end up with a few inches. I am glad I am off.

I am also a big fan of Paul Simon. A great American songwriter. I especially like his solo stuff, Graceland and Rhythm of the Saints.

Edited: Today, 10:21am Top

>199 msf59: - Yes, I have both those solo albums of his and a few others. I love how he was never afraid to branch out and experiment with other types of music, African and others. He is always willing to learn, adapt and grow his own style, and include new sounds to his own repertoire. I saw him perform with the Jesse Dixon Singers (gospel, first link below), as well as Ladysmith Black Mambazo, from South Africa (second link).

(2 songs here):

Diamonds on the Souls of Her Shoes - really fun!

Edited: Today, 2:37pm Top

I love "You Can Call Me Al".

My grandson, husband, and I used to love to watch this video together while I was babysitting. Yes, over and over and over. We made bongos out of all sorts of things to play along with this song. :D

Today, 12:29pm Top

>201 SqueakyChu: - OMG, this is hilarious!!! I have never seen this *version* before. Chevy Chase has always been a fave of mine but he is positively priceless in this! His body language and facial expressions, and Paul is so deadpan.... Thanks, Madeline. This is a keeper

Today, 2:21pm Top

That was a lot of fun!-good to watch on a snowy day!

Today, 2:37pm Top

>202 jessibud2: I adore that video! It's a favorite of Jose's as well.

Today, 3:13pm Top

>203 torontoc: - It sure is, Cyrel! :-)

>204 SqueakyChu: - Thanks again Madeline! I can't stop laughing! Hi to Jose!

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