Month: August 2012

Last night at the 138 Listening Lounge

My friend Maureen invited Tim and me to join her at the 138 Listening Lounge last night–it’s a musical performance at somebody’s home, where the listeners tend to be quiet and attentive. It’s nice for people like me who dislike crowds–while there are a lot of peopel in a small space, you’re not packed into a club where people you don’t know keep bumping into you and spilling beer down your leg. You’re in somoen’s house, which creates a greater sense of both intimacy and courtesy.

Tom, Maureen’s other half, caters the eventt and he makes fantastic food, so we knew no matter what, at least we’d enjoy delicious something or other. We got there early to help Tom bring in the food and got to hear the sound check. The same crew that does the Listening Lounge also has a program called 1 band 1 brand, where subscribers sign up for weekly emails telling them about a new band and a new clothing brand…a very cool partnership. But I digress.

Last night’s band: Pearl and the Beard.

Tim and I are both completely crushed out.

Not just with their music, which is this cool rootsy indie rock with killer harmonies, but the band members as well. They were fun, articulate, genuine, cool people. The kind of people you can instantly joke with and who hug you even though you’ve just met. You know what I mean. Very good stuff. Here’s a video. Enjoy.

When you’re done watching that, check out the video for Hot Volcano, where you can hear Emily’s fantastic cello playing and see Jocelyn on the kazoo. Jeremy’s voice fits perfectly with the women’s…haunting.

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Pandora

A funny thing happened…

There will be no hideous handbag posting this month, as I haven’t really encountered any. Maybe I’ve been shopping less. Maybe tastes have improved. Maybe no one submitted anything. Maybe next month’s post will feature bags SO HIDEOUS they will compensate for this month’s lack of posts. You decide.

I had been making serious headway in my office. I was really excited.

And then I visited my mom to help clean out the family homestead.

I came home with three boxes of books. Big boxes of big old hardcover books that I absolutely will not trade in because they’re amazing.

The Burgess Bird Book for Children (1919), The Burgess Animal Book for Children (1920) and the Burgess Flower Book for Children (1923), beautifully written and full of gorgeous full-color illustrations. A 1915 version of Cinderella, again with beautiful illustrations and catchy verses retelling the story. Several Dr. Doolittle books from the 1920s. Tons of mythology, fables, fairy tales, and folklore. I LOVED mythology, fairy tales, fables and folklore as a child–and still do. When I was working on my master’s in literature and deluding myself with the notion that I might get a Ph.D., I was seduced by Virginia Woolf–obsessed with the idea of writing a brilliant dissertation on her work. Now I realize that what would have come most naturally for me is analysis of how the meaning assigned to fairy tales, myths and fables changes during times of societal upheaval. But I digress.

Hawthorne's wonder Book

Hawthorne’s Wonder Book.

While there were many books that I loved as a child, this is the one that stands out in my memory: Hawthorne’s Wonder Book. Nathaniel Hawthorne retells myths for children in a wonder, conspiratorial way – he makes you feel like you’re learning someone’s secrets, part of some inner circle. The whole book is lush and indulgent.

Truly amazing stuff.

Pandora

One of my favorite plates.

Fantastic finds

I had a really good trip to Connecticut last weekend. My dad and I both made some sales at the derby bout on Saturday night and we had a good time cheering on the teams. We talked a lot about music and books and writing, and he loaned me a few books. Which is good, because I read FAST and always need something lined up to read next.

Vanity set

Matching mirror and vanity jar. I love the pattern.

On Sunday, I met up with my mother. We went through a dresser on the second floor of her house and found all kinds of goodies: a vanity set, a plastic apron with a pretty rose print, a Bliss compact in the original presentation box, some vintage eyelash curlers and lipstick samples…amazing.

Bliss Compact

Compact styled by Bliss. The E. A. Bliss Company was in Meriden, Connecticut…where my mother lives.

But my favorite piece is this little watch ring: It’s marked Rexton, but I haven’t been able to find anything about it online. Fortunately, Tim and I have a fantastic jeweler who deals with watches and lots of estate jewelry, so I’m sure I can learn something from him. And get the watch properly repaired. It runs when I wind it, but loses time. It’s such a pretty piece and fits my little finger so perfectly that I know it was just waiting for us to find it so it could get some use.

Rexton watch ring

Rexton watch ring. Not sure if it started life as a regular watch or was always a ring.

Today Tim and I are taking a day off and heading to the beach. I love the beach, and we almost never go…I’m thrilled. We’re celebrating our anniversary this weekend, so we’ve got plans to do all sorts of things we both love but almost never do. I’m looking forward to it.

Off to go pack for Salisbury.