F. Scott Fitzgerald —
First you take a drink, then the drink takes a drink, then the drink takes you.
Pastis 790 xxx
photos by gluttonforlife

2.9.17 Easy Does It

February has arrived and it's been brutal over here. The days are short and grey. The sun is elusive. Fortunately, the birdseed with which we carpet the yard attracts a lively crew of feathered friends that brings some welcome distraction. Prehistoric-looking wild turkeys stroll in on spindly legs and scratch at the snowy ground with their long toenails. Woodpeckers go at the suet cakes like red-headed sledgehammers. The stellar jays are pugnacious but the petite chickadees—the sorority girls of the bird world—never seem to notice. It's dark by 5:30 and, to be perfectly frank, thoughts turn quickly to cocktails. Just so you know, I'm not much of a drinker; have never been able to hold my liquor. Two cocktails will often be one too many, so I go easy. But lately, there have been a lot of sharp edges that need softening and there's something so comforting about the ritual of closing the day down with a drink. Know what I'm saying?

Nora Ephron —
I have made a lot of mistakes falling in love, and regretted most of them, but never the potatoes that went with them.
Potatoes 790 xxx
photo by steven randazzo & bette blau (@whatbettefound)

1.31.17 Small Potatoes

The events of the past week have been overwhelming, provoking widespread anxiety as well as organized resistance. When life becomes unwieldy, when the world turns into a place you can scarcely recognize, sometimes all you can do is focus on what's right in front of you. As I've said before, regardless of the momentous happenings, sooner or later it's time for dinner. I hope you're cooking warm, nourishing foods these days. Now more than ever, we need to keep up our strength and our spirits. When you break bread with friends and family, set politics aside for a moment and give thanks for simple deliciousness. Compared to the enormity of what's looming, it may seem like small potatoes, but sometimes that's exactly what we need. 

Emma Goldman —
If voting changed anything, they'd make it illegal.
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photos by george billard (except this one, taken by a stranger)

1.24.17 On the March

On January 21, 2017, I joined nearly a million activists for the Women's March on Washington. With my husband (constantly photographed because of his "Feminist As Fuck" sweatshirt) and my 23-year-old niece, who was visiting the East Coast on her way back from a trip to Israel, I traveled to the nation's capital on a bus chartered from New York City with 50 fellow marchers. We marched for women's rights and a host of other causes, including immigration reform, health care reform, environmental protection, LGBTQIA rights, racial justice, freedom of religion and workers' rights. It was a historic day that took place on the heels of Trump's inauguration and overshadowed it in terms of scope and passionate support. It was an enormous, effusive, peaceful and uplifting event that echoed around the country, and the world, in more than 600 sister marches.

Mary Karr —
"There's been a death of sorts, but without a few days in hell, no resurrection is possible."
Larry 790 xxx
photos by gluttonforlife

1.17.17 The Death of Me

Aging brings with it many unexpected aspects. Some not so good, of course; the many indignities of the body spring to mind. But now that I am able to look back over more than thirty years of adulthood, I am fascinated by this new perspective on my own life. Only with the passage of time, and growing self-awareness, do patterns emerge. Last week, the untimely and violent death of our resident grouse, Larry David, brought a flood of memories and associations that suddenly crystallized into something freighted with greater meaning. I'm not sure how you will receive this rather unusual story but I would love to hear your reactions. Please feel free to respond candidly.

Tagged — rebirth, memory, death
Theodore Roosevelt —
The little owls call to each other with tremulous, quavering voices throughout the livelong night, as they sit in the creaking trees.
Falcon1 790 xxx
photos by gluttonforlife

1.10.17 For the Birds

Despite the rumors floating around, January does not have the highest suicide rate. Contrary to the common belief that suicides peak during the frozen winter months, they are actually most prevalent during the late spring and early summer. It is true that January can feel dark and isolating, especially if you shun the cold and refuse to leave your house. I recommend that you plan some fun activities that propel you into the light—skiing! snowshoeing! ice skating!—or at least into the company of others. Museums, theaters and classrooms all work. So step away from that screen and engage with the world. I attended a fantastic demonstration this weekend from the Delaware Valley Raptor Center, a local organization that's dedicated to rehabilitating birds of prey that are found sick or injured. Those that don't recover sufficiently to be released back to the wild stay on and participate in the educational presentations the organization makes to schools, camps and other interested groups all over the region.