Waking up with the sun is something I have always wanted to do and I finally did it this summer. Early morning walks that often end up being half-run half-walk are the perfect antidote to this pandemic. Here’s a little snippet from my mornings.
Eric Carle and all his creations are a big part of my kids’ childhood. His are often the first books they choose for bedtime and somehow I never get tired of reading them again and again. I know the The Very Hungry Caterpillar by heart and I have often marveled at how the superbly entertaining story can teach colors, letters, numbers, days of the week, healthy eating and metamorphosis to toddlers who can barely walk.
When I read about Carle’s passing in May, I scoured the net with a heavy heart for any and every little tidbit I could get about him. It was my way of not wanting to let go of his creative genius. Of course, it wasn’t enough. But I did stumble upon this lovely interaction between Mr. Rogers and Eric Carle at the latter’s studio.
Speaking of geniuses, Anthony Bourdain is in the news again. The documentary “Roadrunner: A Film About Anthony Bourdain” by Morgan Neville is bringing up discussions on ethics and deepfake technology. Bourdain isn’t around to tell us whether he approves of the A.I. generated version of his voice reading his own email. But his fans are not happy and it does raise questions, both ethical and emotional. The synthetic audio itself is a mere forty-five seconds but failing to disclose the use of technology is the issue here, not the duration. I have no way of knowing whether he would have cared, but I am looking forward to seeing the film.
Moving on to happy things, we have been listening to this song by P!nk and her daughter on repeat. I read that she recorded it at home because “it made us feel happy and so we’re gonna put it out for no other reason than that we hope that the song makes you feel happy.” It does.
Also, this. Growing your own food.
We are putting these organic green fellas in every dish, waiting for the tomatoes to ripen and baking fruit-encrusted cakes. For a long time, cake meant chocolate at our house but recently we have branched off into unfamiliar fruity territories. After all, nothing says summer like juicy peaches and sweet red strawberries.
“If you can fall in love again and again… if you can forgive as well as forget, if you can keep from growing sour, surly, bitter and cynical… you’ve got it half licked.” – Henry Miller. If rising early was my first then this quote embodies my second intention for this summer. I refuse to grow sour, even in the face of this pandemic and climate change and a whole array of other problems.
My nine-year-old and I are reading Coraline, not together but simultaneously. I am reading it for the second time while he picked it from a summer reading list. We got two books, one bought and one borrowed from the local library. Whimsically wonderful and delightfully spooky, the story is known to terrify grown-ups more than it does children. It’s probably because having seen and heard more, we can gauge the level of danger better. I enjoyed the depictions of boredom and bravery in the story as it propelled me to a time when I was a child and often complained of being bored. As for bravery, I liked the definition. “Being brave doesn’t mean you aren’t scared. Being brave means you are scared, really scared, badly scared, and you do the right thing anyway.”
“This book will send a shiver down your spine, out through your shoes, and into a taxi to the airport. It has the delicate horror of the finest fairy tales, and it is a masterpiece.” said Terry Pratchett. I agree wholeheartedly.
Happy reading, running, sketching, coding or whatever it is that keeps you from growing sour.