got detoured from Croatia to anywhere-in-the-Schengen-zone due to a forgotten passport, but we may have found the meaning of life in a plate of vegetables, artichokes, prosciutto, and very fresh cheese at lunch in Trieste


The Real, Fabulous Knick Knacks of Fictional, Fabulous Females

Deborah Buck was the proprietor of Madison Avenue Buck House antique gallery and store for 10 years. Then the financial slump sent sales plummeting, and she had to closer her once-successful venture. But while she shuttered the business, she didn’t shutter its windows, spending six months using the retail frontage for an art project documented in the new The Windows of Buck House: Fabulous Fictional Females.

The book’s photos, taken by Jaka Vinšek, show how Buck kept her windows filled with a changing array of accouterments for 22 imaginary women. She wanted to create a pantheon of swashbuckling heroines seen from behind the curtain—a collection of commemorative portraits that evoke life, like dioramas at the Museum of Natural History. She’d been inspired by a visit to the home of Georgia O’Keeffe in the New Mexican dessert. “Everything was as she had left it, and it had such a strong voice,” Buck said. “It was a sense of connection with someone I truly admired: a woman who raised the bar on what was possible, someone who took risks with her life and her mind.”

So she came up with characters like Ink Lee, a Shanghai artist; Goldy Banks a Geneva investment banker; Berty Cardinal, a Brazilian ornithologist; and Eureka Miner, a Utah prospector. Often, the displays began with a “keystone piece” in the form of one item of furniture. “From there I created a personality collage,” she said. She began to ask questions about the woman she’d created: Who is she? Where is she? What’s she doing? What is her challenge?

Read more. [Image: Jaka Vinšek]

these are a few of my favorite things:

  • words
  • warm tea on rainy days
  • my gold helmet
  • artichoke hearts
  • sly Harry Potter references
  • sly everything references
  • family legends
  • cake
  • schnitzel with fries because you don’t actually ever eat it with noodles, but sometimes with fries

8 April 2014. My paternal grandparents were married seventy years ago today, after an engagement that has become the stuff of family legend. Picture it: Cape Cod, 1943. World War II is raging in Europe and Asia. My grandfather is an engineer, so he’s stateside, in Boston. My grandmother has just finished a music degree and her father, an American math professor in China, has just died of cancer (he and her mother are still in Japanese-occupied China, under house arrest.) Her father’s childhood best friend from Tennessee writes to his son: Jimmie, it would be so very nice if you wrote the daughter of my old friend with your condolences. He does, of course. And as it turns out, she’s an au pair that summer on Cape Cod, not so far from Boston at all. He goes to visit her. They spend a weekend in August on the Cape — though according to my father, his father’s version of the story was that the apple trees were in bloom. They have at least one conversation about God. In a letter to his mother, he describes her as “a Nordic Goddess” (though I have also heard a version in which he called her a “tall, blonde Amazon.”) They are engaged by the time he goes back to Boston at the end of the weekend.