a book about paris in the 1920s by hemingway

moveable feast hemingway1

a moveable feast (1964) by ernest hemingway was published three years after his death / the book is a product of literary possessions he had stored in 1928 at the ritz hotel in paris which the hotel’s management convinced him to repossess in 1956 \ originally called “the paris sketches,” the final title was chosen by his 4th wife, mary hemingway and inspired by what hemingway’s friend &  biographer, a.e. hotchner, recalled him saying:  “if you are lucky enough to have lived in paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for paris is a moveable feast.” 

the only other hemingway that i have read is “the old man and the sea” back in high school / i don’t know what i thought of hemingway back then \ but reading him now, i have to say that he is the kind of writer whose entire body of work i am inspired to delve into / i like his sparseness of words which despite this economy, expresses his thoughts effectively & beautifully  <“parsimonious” would be that same desirable quality in statistics> \ he has interesting things to say / this book in particular describes how, where and when he wrote & with whom he socialized during his creative period in paris

hemingway’s memoirs of the years he lived in paris as an expatriate writer in his mid-20s is fascinating & moving / poverty & living well in paris seem contradictory but that describes the lives of hemingway’s cohort <the so called “lost generation” which also included ezra pound, f. scott fitzgerald & ford madox ford among the well-known> \ i cannot help but think how sophisticated & cosmopolitan writers of his generation were, having spent their creative periods in europe during the time called the “roaring twenties” or the “jazz age” \ a period of social changes & cultural conflicts, a break from tradition towards “modernity”

and getting published then & now are so different! \ internet & digital technology has imploded content creation & changed the economics of publishing / in the future, can we expect a longer list of  literary classics to emerge from the digital generation of writers? \ what is the impact of the digital revolution in the literary world? / better, worse or same quality of writing?

this book is a serendipitous discovery and i am inspired to do a hemingway reading project \ i have 6 other novels,  1 other non-fiction & 6 short story collections to choose from

illustration friday | metamorphosis

unearthly kurt1

“unearthly kurt” performing where did you sleep last night | digital


thursdays @market square


we only have a few weeks left to enjoy the farmers’ market at market square / every thursday, we are treated to acoustic music, beautiful bouquets of flowers, herbs, organic vegetables & fruits \ comfort food such as homemade pies, cookies, jams & jellies / smoked salmon, cheeses, pierogies and our favorite – greek food! / and so it was yesterday, my favorite analysts & i had our fix of stuffed eggplant, moussaka, buffalo chicken pasta & baklava

buyer beware! | guest travelpost from alaska


my favorite curmudgeon is a sophisticated world traveler \ wine & beer connoisseur / finder of unusual things \ intolerant of mushrooms / & hasn’t eaten hot dogs in 29 years \ currently vacationing in alaska, MFC obliged to my request for a guest travelpost


Driving north from Anchorage to Denali National Park is over 200 miles of mostly wilderness.

The scenery can get hypnotic.

After about 188 miles, in the middle of nowhere, in a clearing on the side of road a sign appears.

Take a moment to imagine a 4 story concrete igloo.   Did you imagine boarded up windows, graffiti and peeling paint?  If not, here’s some pictures to help you next time someone asks you to imagine a dilapidated 4 story igloo in the middle of the Alaskan wilderness.

Based on 5 minutes of internet research:  The igloo was built as a hotel in the 70’s and was abandoned before it was ever occupied due to code violations (windows too small).  It’s currently for sale ($300,000).

Check out this article for more pictures:

illustration friday | king

image king of the road | pen & colored pencil


about the jeepney:


a book about cod


“a biography of the fish that changed the world” is the subtitle of cod (1997) by mark kurlansky & succinctly describes this interesting book / kurlansky is the 1999 winner of the james beard award \ the highest honor for food and beverage professionals working in north america

though tasteless & flavorless, cod meat is more than 18% protein and only 0.3% fat / when dried  it is nearly 80% protein \ a basque-speaking cod hauled by a medieval fisherman from a basque folktale begins the fascinating story of this once highly valuable fish / basques were able to travel long voyages because they knew where to find huge schools of cod & which they salted \ this provided them with a nutritious supply that would not spoil for a long time / but the vikings had actually been curing cod centuries before the basques \ the difference is that unlike the basques, they did not have salt / they preserved cod by drying them in the frosty winter air \ because of its long history as preserved food, cod is generally thought of in its dried version, not fresh

it would not have occurred to me that this material for fish sticks that my favorite young people love had such an impact in the economic & thus political history of the new world <politics & economics tend to be intertwined>\ the entrepreneurial spirit of the colonists came to fore in their fight to keep their fishing & trade rights / rearing the head for colonial independence & bringing to fruition adam smith’s theory of the “invisible hand” <& the benefits of a free market & the growth of trade> \ i think books such as this give life and make the teaching & learning of history and economic theory much more interesting

one interesting bit of history is that during the time that the british were successfully fishing new england waters & supplying the cod market, the pilgrims were starving! \ in 1624, there were 50 british ships fishing the coasts of new england, up from 10 in 1621 when the pilgrims first arrived / aside from being unprepared <they did not know how to farm, fish or hunt> & the influx of more and more pilgrims, another reason given for their failure to take advantage of this abundant resource <cape cod, hello> is their rejection of unfamiliar food \ it must be a british cultural trait / the same behavior is noted in other books written about in this blog <books about india pale ale, rubber & tea>

interesting too are the innovations developed in the fishing industry where the cod is the central character / among them was freeze drying \ invented by the new yorker clarence birdseye / he sold his company to the postum company \ whose owner renamed his company to general foods / filleting machinery was introduced in 1921 & reduced waste \ freezing + filleting = fish fillets or sticks / and it became a commercial success / “scrod” which is a small cod fillet became a household word with the industrialization of filleting / the gorton company still makes fish sticks <you can find it in the supermarket’s frozen section> \ fish sticks are now mostly made from pacific pollock

the last section of the book  which is less interesting to me is about the damage done by overfishing & how countries try to mitigate its effects / overall, an excellent read, very well-written \ interesting, entertaining & informative

my favorite curmudgeon had suggested another mark kurlansky book “salt” but i chose to read this / next will be about the basques