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Month: December 2012

Monday links

The Obamacare future is nigh. (H/T JB) PBS (rather belatedly) asks if we’re safer with all that “suspicious activity” reporting. (Tip o’ hat to RLW) Is there a vampire on the loose? (Or merely a clever tourism scheme?) Did you see anything in the MSM about pennies and nickels being phased out next year? (ADDED: Nevermind. It’s a hoax.) Anybody here ever drink a switchel? I’d never heard of it until I ran into the term in the fascinatingly eccentric little book The Alcoholic Republic: An American Tradition (thanks for the recommend, JG). Apparently at one time the switchel was…


How did Grandma do it?

Over the weekend I canned eight pints of this and 5-1/2 pints of that. And from start to (endless) cleanup, it took about half the weekend. The whole time I kept wondering, “How did Grandma do it?” My grandmother (like yours, most likely) canned hundreds of pints and quarts of … everything. It was part of the routine of feeding an enormous family. And she did it without help. No one but Grandma was allowed in Grandma’s kitchen. (Which was unfortunate, because not only did she work herself to death; her daughters grew up with minimal kitchen skills. But that’s…


Lagaan: weekend movie

I swear, if somebody had told me that I would absolutely love a nearly four-hour-long Bollywood musical — in Hindi — about the game of cricket … I’d have thought they were crazy. But somebody must have told me that years ago and I must have believed them. Because Lagaan: Once Upon a Time in India is an old favorite. Oh. Well. And there’s one little thing I didn’t mention about it. A lagaan is a tax. And Lagaan the movie is about a glorious tax revolt. And, without violence, it’s about a war against tyrants. The setup: It’s 1893,…