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04 December 2017


"To be grateful is to live a full life. It is to know worry and accept worry. It is to shore up the foundations even in the face of the weathering forces of tragedies and time."

Well said, Sarah.

Thank you.

Oh, Drew, you are a sweetie. Thank you for the kind words.

Off to try and shore up foundations! :)

Is it bad luck to open the book of umbrellas inside the house?

I wondered myself if the book opened up to work like an umbrella (like Kramer's coffee table book that became a coffee table). If I get it I'll be sure not to open it in the house! :)

Just read both your essays; so well-written as always! Especially loved the "Grateful" article - you managed to say so much in so few words. And you'd think I'd know, but is that a photo of your boys or something the magazine added? - It's so arty!

As for Poirot, I'm just not a David Suchet fan, for some reason that I can't figure out. My vote goes to Peter Ustinov. Can we expect an article from you about the many Miss Marples (or should that be Misses Marple?)? In my opinion, no one will ever be better than Margaret Rutherford.

I loved Grateful is as Grateful Does. It was really beautifully written. :) --Rachel

Thank you so much! I wish I could take credit for that photo but a. I'm not able to take great photos like that and b. I would be too busy yelling at the boys to get down to take their picture! :)

I never was a Suchet fan, and Poirot is still not my favorite, but he did grow on me. I was surprised how much I enjoyed Ustinov in the role! A very different performance.

I've always been a Geraldine McEwan Marple fan, but I've not watched enough Rutherford episodes. I'll get on that!

Thank you so much for the compliment. I was trying to answer the people who always tell me to just get over my anxiety--as if it's just that easy. So it was therapeutic to write and I'm so touched that you went and read it.

Yay, CR is back! And with so many yummy links.

I will go and read the essays on my lunch break, with comments. But I didn't want to wait to say how much I missed checking in every week.

Welcome back! Both your articles were excellent but the Grateful essay really touched my heart.

I've never seen any of the Poirot movies but used to enjoy the stories, so your take on the various aspects of the character were interesting.

And as always your collection of links was intriguing. We're trying to spend down the last of our budget before year end, and I found a couple of likely prospects. But Brolliology? Maybe not ;-)

Oh Hapax, you are a lovely. Wow, you're going to check in on your lunch break? I am moved--thank you. On my lunch breaks I always had to find a place to go and breathe in through my nose, out through my mouth, leaving both people and computers SOMEWHERE ELSE. You are a better person than me! :)

So glad to be back!
And thank you for the kind words. I really do love writing, especially as a way to settle scores with all the people who have told me just to be grateful rather than anxious. Ha! I just have to work harder on reconciling the two.
So glad you found some links to use! I'm surprised when I read other sites and lists how MUCH book news I miss, even though I trawl the Internet daily. There's simply lots of book news to spread around--and lots of ways to spend library budgets!

Back to comment!

I was never really a fan of Poirot, either on page or on the screen - I'm a Tommy and Tuppence (or really, mostly Tuppence) girl all the way. But your analysis and appreciation of the different adaptations made me kind of want to watch them (except for Branagh. A little Branagh goes a looong way, imho)

And the gratitude essay ... My, that was lovely, and a balm to the soul in very anxious, bitter, angry times. I'll confess my mind went to silly places with the theme of "grateful means to be full" because I automatically wanted to fill in the blank of "full of WHAT? Full of grate ... -ed ... ness? Grating? Make America Grate Again - too late for THAT!"

But of course, that *was* silly, and my GrownUp Brain promptly explained that to be grateful was to be full of grace ... and not in the Ave Maria sense, except that the BVM herself may have had a life filled with grace, but also filled with the first-century equivalent of diapers, and that stupid donkey, and Joseph-what-do-you-MEAN-we're-moving-to-Egypt?, and the Magnificat is itself a brilliant rant just "full" of savage joy and exultant PISSED-OFF-EDNESS at the injustices of this world but also simple wonder at "Hey, look at this little person I've been gifted, aren't I the luckiest person on Earth?" All of which are good and chewy thoughts for the beginning of Advent.

tl;dr : DO keep on writing. You have things to say, and the way you say them makes me realized that I do, as well.

I do most fully agree with you about Prince Harry and Meghan Markle -- I officially don't care about the monarchy, but it's hard not to be heartwarmed by them seeming happy. Bless their baby hearts.

I like the program of getting white parents to talk their kids about race! Really anything that gets those conversations started in white homes. I had the odd set of parents in a zillion who actually did talk to me about it, and even though they made mistakes, they gave me such an important grounding to be aware of racism and talk about it sensibly as an adult by which I mean MAINLY I know there's a lot I don't know and it behooves me to shush my face and listen most of the time. :p

Let's face it, I just want to watch a lot of British TV and movies, and I will do any amount of work to make that hobby look legitimate, even "compare and contrast" papers on Poirot! :)

I didn't myself know quite where I was going with full, particularly when I am feeling logy from being full with too much Christmas junk food. But it struck me that a person could be both grateful and anxious (which is, I feel, what people misunderstand, if the amount of people who have told me to cure my anxiety by "counting my blessings" is any indication), the demand is perhaps to accept them both as a cost of being human. Or something.

Oh, my God, sometimes I think about the BVM in that manger, also losing Jesus on the train (really, Joseph, I had to go to the bathroom, you couldn't watch him for a second??!?!?), and think, holy cow. Thanks to your comment I am going to go spend some time with the Magnificat. Not a bad thing to do this season. Thank you.

I always love hearing what you have to say. PLEASE keep saying it!

I know, mostly I just want to pat Harry and Meghan on the heads because they strike me as adorable puppies. And I don't even like puppies. I'll admit it, whatever else Harry has done, I and the rest of the world have seen the picture of him after his Mom was killed (in the funeral procession) and that was one bereft 12-year-old boy. I'm pulling for him, and thus for them. Evidently I can be sentimental, but mostly only with Brits.

I'm the first to admit I don't know what to do about racism, or talking about it. I am going to follow your lead and try and find ways to listen. Another pretty okay way to spend the season of Advent.

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