Saturday, August 15, 2009

Theatre Connections

Last week I drove to Monmouth to see Twelfth Night that my daughter's friend directed. It was a fun production and the cast had a lot of energy. The staging was wonderful. It starts off with Feste dressed in early 20th century garb in a movie studio and the characters are costumed to resemble people like Mae West and Buster Keaton and the Keystone Kops and swashbucklers, etc. Not only does said friend act and direct, she also teaches acting in California during the winter.

Then yesterday said friend and a friend of hers came to town for lunch with me. Daughter and friend met in Vienna in the 80s at the English Theatre. Friend is a actress (and director) and daughter had just finished two years in university studying theatre arts. Daughter worked mostly for free and backstage except for one play where she had a bit role. Friend had leading roles. It's hard to believe it's been over 20 years since those days. Vienna's English Theatre is still going strong. Not only did we have lunch, I introduced them to a couple of great stores in town and then we went to the bookstore.

I'm sorry I had no idea that she was in Maine earlier in the summer, otherwise I would have seen more of the productions. Friend is also Gertrude in Hamlet and and Angelique in A Little Hotel on the Side.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Shelving Books

Shelving books in a new house takes time. The house that I'm renting has lots of built in bookcases and, at least so far, I think I have plenty of space. It's just that when I pick up an old friend that I haven't read for while I need to think about where it should go or is there something in it that I need to re-read and I find myself thumbing though it. Of course there are lots of books that immediately find a home like all of my bibles and commentaries and liturgical resources and children's books. I like to organize them by category and then author, so I can find something fairly quickly.

This morning I opened another book box and thumbing through a source book on liturgy I opened it to the following gem. It is a section called "Tell Them the Truth" It reminds me of Telling Secrets recent post on misogyny and all the fuss about Hillary Clinton's speaking out in Africa.

I know that many men and even women are afraid and angry when women do speak, because in this barbaric society, when women speak truly they speak subversively—they can't help it: if you're underneath, if you're kept down, you break out, you subvert. We are volcanoes. When we women offer our experiences as our truth, as human truth, all the maps change. There are new mountains.

That what I want—to hear you erupting. You young Mount St. Helenses who don't know the power in you—I want to hear you. I want to listen to you talking to each other and to us all: whether you're writing an article or poem or letter or teaching a class or talking with friends or reading a novel or making a speech or proposing a law or giving a judgment or singing the baby to sleep or discussing the fate of the nations, I want to hear you. Speak with a woman's tongue. Come out and tell us what time of night it is! Don't let us sink back into silence. If we don't tell our truth, who will? Who'll speak for my children, and yours?
Ursula K. Le Guin

This quotation is from "Dancing at the Edge of the World." I loved Ursala Le Guin's fantasy, science fiction and her children's stories. Her writing goes far beyond that, though. Her most recent novel (2008) called Lavinia is about the wife of Aeneas. For those of us who read the Aeneid in Latin, we know there isn't really much about her there. In fact, I had forgotten that after he got to the Italian peninsula he wooed a local girl. I'm going down to the bookstore to see if they have it. I like Le Guin's books because they have strong female characters. These women are not afraid to tell the truth.

Update: the bookstore had to order a copy, they sold out of what they had. It should be in on Monday. I love independent bookstores and this one is great.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Cooking for Izzie

For those days when I'm too tired to cook, we've found a chef for Izzie.
I have given up trying to get Izzie to eat dog food. I have two books on cooking for your dog and since she just loves whatever I eat, I think her last years should not involve nightly fights (which she usually wins) over what she eats. Tonight she had roasted chicken, brown rice and some bing cherries (one of the few fruits she likes). This week we've had ground lamb patties, sweet potato, Swiss chard, pork tenderloin, sweet corn, summer squash (you get the idea) She doesn't like eggplant, though. I've been sprinkling vitamins on her meat and have seen a definite improvement in her ability to do stairs and jumping on furniture this past week. We had a good long walk today and she managed it without balking. So her dried food is just there for snacking, should she choose to want some.

Izzie was four when we became companions. I don't know much about her history before then, but it's been a real struggle for the past seven years to get her to eat anything except people food. There are a few veggies she doesn't like, but mostly if I fix meat or fish, something starchy and some veggies she will wolf it down. She really likes the cabbage family of vegetables and sweet potatoes. Pasta is her favorite starch, although rice will do if it has butter on it. One of the books said to give her equal portions of meat and vegetable and double that of starch, which is what I do.

Here's a recipe for Canine Lasagna that Izzie (and her doggie friends) like:
1 pound (minced) ground turkey cooked until browned.
1-15 oz. jar spaghetti sauce
some garlic powder (optional)
oregano (optional)
1 lb. elbow macaroni cooked
1 lb low fat cottage cheese
2 cups grated cheddar cheese.

Put a third of the spaghetti sauce on the bottom of a casserole dish (add oregano and garlic to sauce if using)
  1. Top that with 1/2 the pasta
  2. Spread half the cottage cheese and then half the cheddar on top of the pasta.
  3. Add another third of the spaghetti sauce.
Repeat 1,2,3.
Cover with aluminum foil
Bake for about 30-40 minutes in a moderate oven (350°F)

I usually cut this into portions and freeze some for later use.

It's not bad people food either, although I prefer it with some onions cooked. Izzie tolerates onions quite well, but a lot of dogs don't. Izzie had an Australian Shepherd friend named Sydney that decided I was ok after I fixed her this one day.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Glorious Sunday

I wish I could find my camera. I guess it's in a box I haven't unpacked as yet. Today was a glorious day and after church Izzie and I took a drive to see a bit more of the peninsula. We saw New Harbor (there's a great Puffin watch tour that you can take from the harbor, that I will take soon) and the cute village of Round Pound and stopped and bought some corn and raspberries and wild Maine blueberries at a farm stand. They had beautiful produce. The views of the water were quite special which is why I wished I had my camera. That and the fact that I have some pictures from Europe I haven't down loaded yet.

After the drive I had lunch at a local restaurant. One of the specials was lobster salad and crab salad in avocado halves. They were surrounded by the best tasting strawberries I've had in a long while and some watermelon and Granny Smith apples. What a treat! I then went to the local bookstore cafe—had a cup of coffee and chocolate chip cookie then walked home to take a nap.

All in all a glorious Sunday.

Friday, August 7, 2009

How would you like a moose in your lobby?

I still don't have the time or energy to write something original, but here's something from the Bangor Daily News. It should lighten up your day. A few days ago, this large moose walked into a building up the coast a bit from where I'm now living. These things weigh about a ton. After getting it sedated, they had to use a backhoe to put in in a truck.

The settling in is going reasonably well. The weather has been great and I really think I'm going to like it here.