Happy Lunar New Year and welcome to the Year of the Tiger!
Three dozen years ago, this Wednesday, I became a mom, bringing our son into the world. Derek did not slip quietly in, but roared with hunger and passion.
Today, he is a proud father and I’m a grandmother who lives too far away from her grandson. This year, I resolve to remedy this separation and cut my three hour flight, or three day drive, to less than a half hour. I also resolved, during my Christmas holiday family break, to return to reading, where I found my time better spent than hoping the next streaming series or movie would live up to its hype and being perpetually disappointed.
A few days before Christmas, I discovered an audiobook edition of one of my favorite books from the early 90s. Revisiting this novel thirty years later, it still brought tears to my eyes, but did not resonate as vibrantly as my rose-colored memories did. I’m glad I listened to it, but I’m not sure it rates a five star favorite ranking anymore.
I quickly followed that audiobook with my annual reading of A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens, this year narrated by Frank Muller and recorded in 1980. I immediately listened to many other Christmas short stories, including The Night Before Christmas by Moore, A Country Christmas by Alcott, The Fir Tree by Anderson, The Birds’ Christmas by Wiggin and “Yes, Virginia There Is a Santa Claus.” Betwixt and between all the classic Christmas tales, I enjoyed the Dune graphic novel. On the final day of 2021, I started Connie Willis’ A Lot Like Christmas, which became my first book of ten to finish since the beginning of 2022.
And I’m back after a months-long blog writing hiatus.
To get my blood flowing and brain juices churning, I’m posting a ‘joke’ my husband sent me via email way back in November 2007 that I’ve been wanting to share (and put some place where I can find it in the future).
For my ‘Let’s clean out the pantry of nearly expired canned goods’ vegetarian (more or less) chili recipe, see my blog post from December 2010 here. Warning: Stop reading now if you will be offended by some mild profanity and tasteless (pun intended) male commentary (from Judge #3).
Inexperienced Chili Taster
Notes from an inexperienced chili taster named Frank, who was visiting Texas from the East Coast:
Recently I was honored to be selected as a judge at a chili cook-off. The original person called in sick at the last moment, and I happened to be standing there at the judge’s table asking directions to the beer wagon when the call came. I was assured by the other judges (Native Texans) that the chili wouldn’t be all that spicy, and besides, they told me I could have free beer during the tasting so I accepted.
From the New York TimesBestselling author Steven Erikson comes a new science fiction novel of devil-may-care, near calamitous and downright chaotic adventures through the infinite vastness of interstellar space.
These are the voyages of the starship A.S.F. Willful Child. Its ongoing mission: to seek out strange new worlds on which to plant the Terran flag, to subjugate and if necessary obliterate new life-forms, to boldly blow the…
I thoroughly enjoyed this hilarious satire of Armageddon. The AntiChrist as an eleven-year-old boy with a Hellhound masquerading as a rat terrier mongrel. The Four Bikers of the Apocalypse easy riding to the End of the World. And it all started with the Serpent and the guardian Angel from the Garden of Eden. To top it all off, a 17th century witch named Agnes Nutter accurately predicted everything.
Why did I wait twenty-five years to read this book? Of course, until recently, I wasn’t even aware of its existence. I have to thank the online Science Fiction & Fantasy book club at GoodReads for introducing me to Terry Pratchett and his Discworld series. Follow these links to view the discussion topics: