January 11, 2012

January Assortment: From Downton to Heirlooms

Last time I wrote about an assortment of topics I had a pretty good time of it. So here is a January medley.

First, BBC’s Downton Abbey and very good it is. If you are not watching it yet, you should. It is full of drama for a thinking person (I mean you have to vaguely understand entailed property) not to mention the best zingers delivered by Dame Maggie Smith ("Do you think she’s mad, ill, or working for the Russians?").

I snagged this screengrab from PBS

This brings me to Julian Fellow's Snobs - anyone who enjoys Downton will LOVE this book. It is a delightful and frothy tale of British aristocracy but set in modern time. Julian Fellows is known for authoring Gosford Park but is rapidly becoming the "guy who wrote Downton Abbey."

Which brings me to Helen Frankenthaler who passed away just a few weeks ago.  No, no relation to other topics. Not only is her art important, but it is beautiful (there is a difference, you know). Frankenthaler worked with the likes of Jackson Pollock and poured thinned paint on canvas to create her works.

This work "Spiritualist" by Frankenthaler from 1973 hangs at the National Museum of Women in the Arts.

Final topic is tomatoes.  Heirloom tomatoes to be specific.  Buoyed by last year's gardening success (to my intense surprise I ended up with a crop of herbs from seed) I am keen to get started and patiently await my catalogue from Rare Seeds.  If you know anything about growing tomatoes in suburban yard or what heirlooms to choose, do get in touch.

With any luck in six months I will have my own crop of lovely tomatoes.

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