Friday, November 23, 2018

Jimi's Bronze

Some years ago my kid skated past the music company that occupied the defunct Pontiac dealership on Broadway, 98102. He said someone approached him and asked for $5 to fund a memorial statue of Jimi Hendrix. He happily complied, though he assumed he would never see a result. Several years later during a visit home he was delighted to discover the statue that is now a shrine -30-
More after the jump.

Thursday, November 22, 2018

Old and New Again

A morning's tour of my grandmother's 1931-1946 edition of the Joy of Cooking paid off as handsomely as always. Whenever I find myself contemplating a meal but feeling unwilling to mush out to the store, Rombauer comes through. Her personal history spans Victorian through mid-century American kitchen technology and is grounded on the farm.

Distribution systems that pre-date electricity and the personal automobile were aimed at stocking a low-tech pantry with staples  meant to be supplemented by a kitchen garden and fresh deliveries. The miraculous restoration of my original central city neighborhood in Seattle means that the supply system for this 1890 house has been restored as well.

I can put a four-course Sunday dinner together with a quick trip to the patch of greens that are growing themselves in the compost border, a dive into the chilled leftovers in the fridge, and a step into the dry stores. Old school country cooking produces gentle, nutritious cuisine that can be prepared at leisure and served when the moment suggests.

I heartily recommend early twentieth century cookbooks. A brief look at the Joy's introductory canape' and sandwich chapter revealed many prototypes of industrial convenience food that are a snap to cobble together out of stores. Those early cooks had many a trick up their sleeves to make a good lot of something out of apparent nothing -30- 
More after the jump.

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

The Tool Shed

Mass-produced imports allow me to take tools for granted. That market makes sense for commercial operations where securing implements is more trouble than it's worth. I have found, though, through inheriting and stumbling across minor treasures, that a well-designed hand tool is worth investing time in careful maintenance. The right one does half the work. It deserves a clean, well-oiled handle (use linseed) and a business end that's scrubbed and dried after use. A good shovel or rake will last generations. Current communications technology seems right to support the old-fashioned tool-sharpening truck that used to make the rounds of neighborhoods -30-

More after the jump.

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

The Candle Stand

Images of eighteenth century rooms show small round tables that hold a candle to support reading. The architecture I live in is turn of the nineteenth century, although the house is turn of the twentieth. Over the years, though ignorant of the style, I have found that eighteenth century furnishing strategies make the most of the interior space. 

The inventory is now as spare and honed as convenience suggests. By accident, I came by a couple of small tables that qualify as candle stands, and they are ideal for supporting reading set-ups. I use electric lamps and lash the cords to the legs of the table for security. I also adhere the base of the lamp to the tabletop using the sticky museum wax recommended to protect artifacts from earthquake. An added nineteenth century fillip is the high-tech doily I picked up at the art museum's gift shop. It's a silicone paint dribble -30-
More after the jump.

Monday, November 19, 2018

Wardrobe Shorthand

From a long-ago source, I learned that the key to managing one's closet is to dress for the weather, for who I am, and for what I intend to do. That simple checklist slashed long confused minutes off the process of getting dressed and generated many a cubic foot of storage space -30-
More after the jump.