The Alchemist Who Crocheted While Listening to Edith Piaf

I’m a bit behind on the birthday list because of a little thing called 102 inches of snowfall. However, I managed to check off three items in the past couple of weeks:

1. Read The Alchemist

The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho is not on the Modern Library’s Top 100 list, but it is one of those books that I’ve been meaning to read for years. It was a quick and delightful read with an inspirational message (Follow your bliss…create your own destiny, etc.). As Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “Life is a journey, not a destination.”

2. Took a crocheting class

I walked into the class knowing that it might be a disaster because I’m left-handed. So I wasn’t overly disappointed when it turned into a disaster. The instructor was nice but didn’t know how to instruct me. It took me two hours to get this far:









I bought two big skeins of yarn, so I am going to try teaching myself. I’ve reserved library books about crocheting that feature left-handed instructions and I’ve found a few YouTube videos on the subject. Wish me luck.

3. Bought an Edith Piaf album

Every year, I choose a musician I don’t know much about and buy one of his/her albums. The album I purchased is a random album of her popular songs. When I listen to it, I’m transported to a French nightclub during World War II. It’s awesome.

Twenty-six items left and three months left as of tomorrow!



Saturday Afternoon Reading

It’s a punishingly cold day in Boston. I’m on my third cup of tea. A few articles that I found interesting follow.

This is a spot-on reflection of the situation in Boston.

This story about divers searching the Thames for 100-year-old metal type will delight any typeface/design nerd.

And on a sad note:

The teen of laser cat photo yearbook fame has committed suicide. Rest in peace, Draven.

A young, successful Emerson alumnus named Harris Wittels died of an overdose the other day. Rest in peace, Harris.

I hope I live to see the day when society deems treatment for mental illness as important as treatment for physical illness.


Dances with Wolves

#75 on the AFI Top 100 Movie List and #11 on my birthday list is Dances with Wolves.

I found it to be very deserving of its seven Oscar wins. This passion project of Kevin Costner’s features great acting, an engaging plot, and stunning cinematography.

I liked it so much that I’m planning to read the book, which the author adapted for film. An interesting bit of trivia: Michael Blake wrote the screenplay first, but Costner told him it would have a better chance as a book first. Blake wrote the book and then Costner bought the film rights.

If you haven’t seen this film and enjoy historical dramas, add this to your watch list.

Trashed, as in Waste

I am an avid recycler. However, after watching the documentary Trashed the other night, a sense of urgency washed over me and I realized that I need to step up my game.

I have recycling down, so it’s time to focus on zero waste—that is, how can I prevent the creation of waste at the outset?

I encourage you to watch Trashed; I rented it on Netflix. The film drags along now and then, but I really appreciated the global perspective it provided. Host and producer Jeremy Irons traveled to Iceland, Indonesia, Lebanon, Vietnam (graphic content warning for this section), Wales, England, and San Francisco.

Be prepared to be shocked and appalled. I promise you, you will look at your trash can differently after you watch it. Immediate actions I’m taking include bringing a reusable mug to coffee shops and bringing my reusable bag with me everywhere. What actions will you take?