Taylor, monkeytails and flash mobs
Things I liked this week
May I recommend
Taylor Swift’s folklore album.
It came out mid (early?) pandemic and caught me by surprise. I am not a Taylor fan (too old). She’s always been a vaguely gawky presence in my peripheral vision… Kanye was mad at her? She was mad at Kanye? Shake it off?
With the release of her first (!) pandemic album, though, she suddenly entered my folk-music loving, middle aged, deeply uncool orbit. The songs are wonderful, each a little story of its own, many of them are very catchy (I don’t know how to music criticism). She has a song about cardigans! There’s an amazing one about a woman who has a “Marvelous time, ruining everything.”
This is a disturbing trend in manscaping:
Below is just a small sampling. Click on the link to get the full gamut of weird
This would have been a good traffic jam to be stuck in
But six people in Oregon on Tuesday managed to secure their shot because they happened to be stuck on a snowy highway at the right place at the right time.
Tweets that made me laugh
Great article on smells.
I loved this article, maybe because in my forthcoming novel (out March, 2022!), one of the characters is a perfumer.
In Muchembled’s telling, a radical turning point in our olfactive history arrived with the plague. When the disease swept across Europe, in the fourteenth century, the nose was regarded mainly as a kind of built-in weathervane for dangers; it rooted out rot, fire, and disease. The going assumption during the plague years—endorsed by authorities such as the French doctor Antoine Mizauld—was that the illness spread through putrid aromas, and that the best protection from the epidemic was to cloak yourself in prophylactic perfume. Mizauld’s preventive suggestions included carrying a pomander (a lemon, an orange, or a lime studded with cloves) or a handkerchief full of laurel leaves, soaked in cinnamon and rose water. He also recommended dabbing the eyes and nose with a spike of lavender oil and purifying the air inside the home by burning sweet-smelling substances such as benzoin, nutmeg, and myrrh on a bed of hot coals, often inside a small, bird-shaped container.
I love rooting plants in water - it feels like magic to me. My trouble is transplanting them to actual soil. I’d say I have a 70% mortality rate at that stage, which is discouraging to say the least.
Maybe this will help.
I will not apologize for cheesiness.
Flash mobs still make me tear up.