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October 28, 2021


Open Thread – Dickensian Bicentennial

There are technically two hours left in February 7 (Alaska time) to wish Charles Dickens a Happy 200th Birthday. So the open thread comes a wee bit earlier than usual.

“Electric communication will never be a substitute for the face of someone who with their soul encourages another person to be brave and true.” ~ Charles Dickens



32 Responses to “Open Thread – Dickensian Bicentennial”
  1. Zyxomma says:

    Sometimes I wish I were in an action movie, based in DC. It would give me a great excuse to kick Eric Cantor on the chin:

    Grumble, grumble, grumble.

  2. OMG says:

    I want you to sit down before reading this link…take a deep breath, exhale slowly…. You may not believe what you are about to read because the normal rhetoric from the Party of Palin is, well, you know, nuts. So take your time and read this article which highlights what a non-insane Republican (notice that I could not credit her with being totally sane, after all she does follow her party on other things) has to say about contraception:

    • thatcrowwoman says:

      omg, OMG.
      non-insane republican?! Who’d a thunk it?
      Like the M&M candy said as it swooned, “They do exist.”
      Bucky Fuller may spin slower in his grave, eh?

    • What I don’t understand is how any one, especially a woman, can still say they want to be part of the republican party. Why stay in a party that clearly wants to take away your rights and send you back to the 19th century. I just don’t get it. If she can’t switch to the Democratic party, then she’d be better off as an independent. Staying in the republican party is not going to rescue it from itself.

  3. Zyxomma, that is a great article. Thanks for reminding me. I started reading it but was interrupted by something and forgot to finish it.

    In honor of Dickens’ 200th birthday, I’ve decided to read David Copperfield. I didn’t like it when we had to read part of it in high school, but my opinion of Dickens has changed – I’ve read quite a few and really like his writing now.

    There are some at the university who see a link between college students’ being able to appreciate Charles Dickens with their reading of the Harry Potter books. I have to say that it seemed to work for me. I didn’t like Dickens when I was in high school and avoided reading any of his other books. While I waited for the next Harry Potter book to come out, I decided to tackle some of the 19th century literature and finally picked up Dickens. Once I read one, I was hooked.

    So, today I started reading David Copperfield – which was the one I thought I didn’t like when we read part of it in high school. And not so surprisingly – I like it!

  4. mike from iowa says:

    In slightly longer than a fortnight,I will have officially lived longer than Charles Dickens. Literary world-prepare to step aside.

  5. Zyxomma says:

    In honor of the 200th birthday of Charles Dickens, there’s an excellent article in Smithsonian magazine. Here’s the link:

    My knitting needles are clicking!

  6. carol says:

    OT. Colorado and Minnesota – really now. But this is from the state that brought you “The Quitter”. I know some reasonable and wonderful people in those states, but REALLY NOW. Of course, Minnesota, proud home of Bachmann. I need some serious mind numbing libations. Wait, I tried that, didn’t help. I’ll just throw my energy into reelecting Obama.

    • leenie17 says:

      Colorado…as in the state which includes Colorado Springs, home of Focus on the Family and other fundy groups that are trying to take over the Air Force Academy. Lots of RWNJs around there!

      Pueblo and environs has quite a conservative, religious population but I was hoping that Denver would balance out the rightward tilt a bit. No such luck.

  7. Kath the Scrappy says:

    Since it’s an open thread,

    Hey, I’ve been watching for this one, Jimmy Fallon with Mrs. Obama. Pretty funny, seriously:

    Let’s Move with Michelle Obama

    As part of the Let’s Move! initiative, Jimmy visits the White House to compete in a fitness competition with Michelle Obama.

    • beth. says:

      I got a big chuckle out of the segment — ’twas well done; FLOTUS not only talks the talk and walks the walk, she moves the move and grooves the groove!

      (Heads are exploding over it, I’d bet, in rwnj-land, though. Her actions just go to show how low she has taken the position of First Lady…she has no respect for it or for the ‘murican people or for the White House. ‘Those people’ have to be voted out — they are an embarassment to rill ‘muricans. Vote Newt=Mitt=Rick in 2012; they (and their wives) would never pull a disrespectful stunt like she did…they know how to class things up.) beth.

      • mike from iowa says:

        and she beat Ellen at pushups on national telly.What kind of elegant First Lady does physical stuff? Most from the right can plan parties and fundraisers. I am glad that Michelle with the appropriate number of Ls walks the walk.

  8. thatcrowwoman says:

    Also, too, speaking of trees, the Eagle-cam is back up and running in Decorah (by-Gawd IOWAY, waving to mikey). No eggs yet, and I haven’t caught a glimpse of eagle yet in live-time, but there are video captures of recent eagle activities:

    • mike from iowa says:

      Waving right back at you,girl. I’m gonna guess mikey will be hard pressed to produce eggs,of any variety. After conversing with esteemed members and visitors of the here blog,I should probably never say never when it comes to eggs. I will probably also too still yet be speaking a number of foreign languages just to keep up with you all. May your forest be forever peaceful,despite one rooster.

      • thatcrowwoman says:

        TWO roosters for now, mikey, but peace in the forest so far. The younger one is just starting to crow; the little-bit-older-one still tolerates the young’un…for now. They chase each other all over the place all day long, then roost side by side in the coop at night. Hmmmmm.

        9 hens a-laying, so lots of hen fruit to share, also, too. Green eggs, brown eggs, and white eggs. If I had ben’s rocket, I’d launch some eggs your direction, you betcha! 🙂

  9. thatcrowwoman says:

    Now that’s a powerful quotation for my Wisdom Board. (I post a thought for the day on a whiteboard at the entrance to my school library.)

    Wishing you all a happy New Year of the trees, Tu B’Shevat. (Think Jewish Arbor Day.)

    Here’s a thoughtful explanation (and call to action) from my dear Rabbi Arthur Waskow of the Shalom Center:

    “The mystics celebrated this moment by creating the joyful Seder of wine, nuts, and fruit — which not only give new life to the next generation but even when we eat them do not require the death of any living being. They are the foods of Eden and the Song of Songs.

    The mystics chose to celebrate God’s fruitfulness at exactly the time that, when the Temple still stood, was the moment for tithing – taxing — fruit and sharing it with the poor. That moment made sure the poor who owned no olive trees nevertheless got to eat the olives, crucial to a Mediterranean diet. The mystics were living not in an ivory tower or their own navels, but in earthy truth. They knew that unless abundance is shared, it withers. God withers.

    …Let us learn together, celebrate together, act together to rescue and heal our Earth from the Crushers in our own society.

    Blessings for new growth in a wintry time, and for a fruitful year.”


    • thatcrowwoman says:

      “Let your soul and spirit fly…”

      Into the Mystic (Van Morrison):

      • Mag the Mick says:

        Starting my day with Crowwoman and Van the Man. Ain’t nothin’ better!

        “Cmon, girl…”

        • thatcrowwoman says:

          it’s a marvelous night for a moondance…

          • psminidivapa says:

            OMG, TCW…
            I think we are the same person, but in different states!! A memory etched in my brain forever is of Van Morrison jumping onstage with a local band (Stockton something-or-other) on the beach near Galway, Ireland, and just launching in to a bunch of his songs as well as singing back-up for theirs. Completely unexpected, unrehearsed, and for the entertainment of about 200 locals and 2 tourists from PA. Into the Mystic was first, followed by Bright Side of the Road…after about an hour, as full moon gleamed over Galway Bay….MOONDANCE. (Never forget that the pub gave us Guinness in glass pub glasses “to go” at closing time, saying, “We know you’ll bring them back.” – and we did!)

          • thatcrowwoman says:

            *dancing in the moonlight and fading into the mystic with psminidivapa*

            sweet dreams, everyone

          • Mag the Mick says:

            I am trying to reply to psminidivapa below, but there seems to be no “reply” option. You are doubtless thinking of a great old Irish band called “Stockton’s Wing”.

            Van the Man is known to be, at times, a very generous, egalitarian performer, and at other times, a right old hoor. Depends on his mood of the moment.

            “Little darlin’ come with me,
            Won’t you help me share my load?
            From the dark end of the street
            To the bright side of the road.”

    • Zyxomma says:

      Red wine, **clink** – White wine, **clink** and a cornucopia of fruits for your pleasure, thatcrowwoman. Would you believe I’ve been so busy getting ready for our show on Friday that the day sneaked up on me unawares? Of course you would! Thanks, if it hadn’t been for your post, I very well could have missed a favorite holiday! Love, health, and peace. Tikkun olam, Shalom!

      • thatcrowwoman says:


        *passing the olives*

        Have a great show. I’ll be thinking of you.

        DH Happy and I will be in Mississippi for littlebird’s college Honors Research Conference. She’s been tapped (? I was never a sorority girl myself, so maybe that’s the term ) by Phi Beta Kappa, and has been invited to present her research paper again at an environmental conference later in the spring. “Risky Business: How the Media Perpetuate the Risk Society. A Case Study of New York Times Coverage of the Exxon Valdez and Deepwater Horizon Oil Spills.”

        Little bird graduates with honors Mother’s Day weekend: BA in Communications, with a minor in Environmental Studies.

        That’s something to crow about, eh? 🙂

        hahahaha caw Caw CAW CAW CAW!!!

        • leenie17 says:

          No doubt that Little bird will go on to make the world a better place…just like her mom! 🙂

        • Zyxomma says:

          You must be so very proud! Phi Beta Kappa is very exclusive. She’ll make connections she’ll use throughout her professional life, if not her entire life! Congratulations to Littlebird.

          • thatcrowwoman says:

            If I were wearing any buttons, I’d be bustin’ ’em, but I’m sitting here in my jammies with a big ole goofy grin on my face, ready for a visit with the sandman. (Don’t y’all believe the timestamp on this post; it’s already dark in the forest and pert near 8 of the evening, so Early to Bed, but not THAT early when you’ve been up since 4am.)

            see ya later, sweet po-taters

  10. “It was the best of birthdays, it was the worst of birthdays…”

    Hope everyone enjoyed Mr. Dickens’s day!

  11. Baker's Dozen says:

    Well said, Charles.

    And may I say you don’t look a day over, uh, 60.

    Keep on pounding away for the 99%.

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