Welcome to BOOK!

I saw this video some time ago originally, but someone just reposted in on LibraryThing today and I thought I should share it with those who might have not yet been introduced to the wonderful new BOOK concept.


“And how big is your dongle?”

This little gem of a sketch had been sitting in my inbox, overlooked for the past few months. Good thing I finally decided to sort out my emails before trashing the lot, as would have been a real shame to miss this one. Something tells me my mum will enjoy it, but I watched it three times myself and am still cracking up!

“Vandals chastised, flea on foot”

For the third night in a row, the helicopters are circling the night skies. This may be completely normal in a city like New York or Los Angeles, but unusual enough here in Montreal to seem really strange and completely disruptive. Like most every year, the students have been boycotting classes to oppose tuition hikes, and to keep things interesting, they’ve taken to protesting in the downtown streets—at night. There’s some live reporting streaming on the Montreal Gazette website, with lots of blurry night photos and captions that are obviously dashed off from mobile phones, which makes for some pretty amusing stuff sometimes, as evidenced with the latest stream which says: “Let’s stay peaceful says crowd. Vandals chastised, flea on foot”.

These protests are apparently fuelled by the latest offer by the Charest government, which they deem unacceptable. One of their chants is “It’s not an offer, it’s an insult”.

From the live stream:

“Police declared march illegal.”

“Chant: An illegal march, that doesn’t exist.”

“Unclear what has become of masked vandal but police are making presence known ”

But what has become of the flea?

"Riot cops moving in at bleury ste cath"

The riot cops are on the scene, and this is where I tune out. And that’s been the news tonight, from the comfort of my living room.


Laughed so hard, I cried.

Image taken from The Gallery of Regrettable Foods

Ok. Admittedly, I’ve been a very bad blogger. First, not posting on any kind of regular basis. Then, writing mood pieces and talking about exciting upcoming events, and then failing to post updates: Unforgivable. Yaddy yaddy yadda. Not here to post an update right now either. That can wait a little, but I simply cannot hold back this latest gem for a moment longer; there’s a book called The Gallery of Regrettable Foods which has been slowly making the rounds among LibraryThing members who have been saying how very funny it is. For instance, my LT friend Nathalie who currently lives in Italy recently had this to say about it: “If you need a good laugh, I’d recommend [The Gallery of Regrettable Foods]. It’s basically excerpts from American cookbooks from the 1920s to 1970s with comments added by the author. I never knew that you can throw everything that’s not Jell-O into Jell-O. Hilarious!”

One of my favourite parts of looking at old magazines is seeing retro ads, which are often very funny, but the food ads in particular have always been a personal favourite in the “things you wouldn’t believe anyone ever thought was a good idea” category. So this book sounds just awesome to me, but unfortunately, it isn’t available at the library and I’m on a book-buying ban right now. Good thing my friend Nathalie thoughtfully provided the link to the Gallery of Regrettable Foods site, which I strongly urge you to visit right now. I hadn’t laughed like that in a long time. I mean, laugh out loud, real belly laughs; laugh until you’re hoarse kind of laughter. The titles alone had me in hysterics before I’d even clicked on the links—a sampling of my favourites:

“Meat! Meat! Meat! Also, Meat!”

“Bran-plus for Minus People. Urgh”

“10 PM Cookery – you nite-owl, you”

“The Unbearable Sadness of Vegetables”

“Cross-dressing Veggies”

and the truly outrageous “Meat Fisting At Home” still have me in hysterics as I type this.

1950s Trans World Airlines Advertisement

A Morning Dip at Seaside

I’m listening to an excellent audio version of Jerome K. Jerome’s Three Men in a Boat (To Say Nothing of the Dog) a classic from 1889. It’s the humorous account of three friends taking a boating trip down the Thames. The following excerpt, which I’ve taken from chapter 3, struck me as quite funny:

“I notice that people always make gigantic arrangements for bathing when they are going anywhere near the water, but that they don’t bathe much when they are there. It is the same when you go to the sea-side. I always determine—when thinking over the matter in London—that I’ll get up early every morning, and go and have a dip before breakfast, and I religiously pack up a pair of drawers and a bath towel. I always get red bathing drawers. I rather fancy myself in red drawers. They suit my complexion so. But when I get to the sea I don’t feel somehow that I want that early morning bathe nearly so much as I did when I was in town.

On the contrary, I feel more that I want to stop in bed till the last moment, and then come down and have my breakfast. Once or twice virtue has triumphed, and I have got out at six and half-dressed myself, and have taken my drawers and towel, and stumbled dismally off. But I haven’t enjoyed it. They seem to keep a specially cutting east wind, waiting for me, when I go to bathe in the early morning; and they pick out all the three-cornered stones, and put them on the top, and they sharpen up the rocks and cover the points over with a bit of sand so that I can’t see them, and they take the sea and put it two miles out, so that I have to huddle myself up in my arms and hop, shivering, through six inches of water. And when I do get to the sea, it is rough and quite insulting.

One huge wave catches me up and chucks me in a sitting posture, as hard as ever it can, down on to a rock which has been put there for me. And, before I’ve said “Oh! Ugh!” and found out what has gone, the wave comes back and carries me out to mid-ocean. I begin to strike out frantically for the shore, and wonder if I shall ever see home and friends again, and wish I’d been kinder to my little sister when a boy (when I was a boy, I mean). Just when I have given up all hope, a wave retires and leaves me sprawling like a star-fish on the sand, and I get up and look back and find that I’ve been swimming for my life in two feet of water. I hop back and dress, and crawl home, where I have to pretend I liked it.”

Text from Three Men in a Boat (To Say Nothing of the Dog) at Project Guttenberg.