...the Journal

The Guest
Refrigerator Door

For the next few weeks, we'll be seeing magnets from Ned & Marta's refrigerator door.

This is magnet 2 of 2
(see the duck poop?)

Household Hints


A Medieval Home Companion:
Housekeeping in the 14th Century

If you are in an region where there are wolves' dens

Recipe for a powder to kill wolves and foxes: Take the root of hellebore (this is the hellebore that has a white flower) and dry that root well, but not in the sun. Remove the earth and then make a powder in a mortar. Mix into this powder a fifth part of well-ground glass and a fourth part of lily leaf. Mix and crush all this together so that it can be put through a sieve. Take honey and fresh blood in equal amounts, mix them with this powder, make a paste that is stiff and thick, form large pieces the size of a hen's egg, cover these pieces with fresh blood, and put them on stones or little tiles in places where wolves and foxes are known to go. If you want to use an old dead animal for bait, you can prepare it two or three days beforehand and throw the powder on the decaying carcass, without forming it into pieces.

Here are some of my theatre reviews, if you're interested.

Updated 3/10/01


In a Sunburned Country
by Bill Bryson


A&E's Biography:
George Reeves

West Wing

That's it for today!


5 April 2001

Well, the cleaning did not exactly come to a screetching halt today, but I only dumped one bag. And not from my office. No, unless I start an entire new project (cleaning off the book shelves--a several day job), the office is pretty much "finished" for now, such as it is.

Todayís bag came from the stuff on the kitchen counter. Itís blue, you know. I discovered that today. Iím just becoming so damn domestic! The dishwasher got unloaded, the counter got cleaned and scrubbed, all the "loose ends" got bagged up and hauled off to the trash.

By then it was time to take the dog to the vet. She needed her shots, her toenails clipped, her anal glands stripped (sorry--you canít pay me enough), and some medications for the infection in her ear. It is my fervent hope that now that she has stripped anal glands and medicine for her ear, that in short order she might actually become a dog that doesnít smell so odious you donít want her near you.

I even gave her a bath when we came home.

I was going to settle in to do some transcription after the doggie bath (Iíd been up since 4:30 and had transcribed an entire tape before the sky turned light), but there came word that the man I was supposed to interview last week, when I came down with the flu, would have a little time at 5 p.m., and would I want to interview him then?

Well, setting up this interview has been so horrendous, what with changes in his schedule, and my getting sick, and the publicist who was working to set it up getting sick, that I decided Iíd better grab the time while the grabbing was good.

But before I went to campus, I had another trip to the post office.

Before Peggy came here, she ordered a lovely poster and had it sent here, since when you order things over the Internet, people are generally not eager to mail them off to Australia. So the plan had been that she would just get it from me, and that would be it.

The problem was that she ordered it several months before she arrived and with the way things are around here, Iíd promptly totally forgotten it. I searched for it while she was here and had this horrible thought that in my frantic clean-up before she arrived, Iíd just tossed the package without realizing what it was.

And so Peggy flew back to Australia without her poster. And Iíve felt guilty about that ever since.

BUT, when I was cleaning my office yesterday, by golly if I didnít find the poster. So I got it packaged up to mail and also packaged up an overdue package for Patrick (a copy of his article, which appeared in the local newspaper) and took both to the post office.

I left here early, since I wasnít sure where I was going on campus and wanted to allow time for getting lost.

I allowed actually too much time and had 45 minutes to kill, after I found a parking spot, so I just did a nice walk along the campus arboretum, which consists of footpaths built on each side of Putah Creek. There are lovely arched bridges over the creek at regular intervals, the last gasp of blossoms on the trees and in the late afternoon, the ducks which populate the creek were all congregated in little clutches, sunning themselves on the grass, while students sat on benches reading the campus newspaper. In the distance I could hear the sound of the marching band rehearsing. It was all very bucolic and I was kind of sorry when it finally came time to go to the interview.

First I met with the Drama/Dance publicist, a fascinating woman who has lived all over the world, including 3 years in India (where her daughter was born) and time in Paris (where her son was born), accompanying her foreign correspondent husband. But now they are settled in Davis and I enjoyed passing the time talking with her until the professor had time to meet with me.

The reason for the interview was that this man, John Iacovelli, who joined the faculty of UC Davis this year, had just received a lifetime achivement award from the LA Drama Critics Circle. It seems odd to give a lifetime achievement to a man who is only 42 years old, but his body of work is incredible, and includes 5 years as production designer for Babylon 5 (and now its spin-off, Crusade + four other TV shows currently on the air), scenic design for Cathy Rigbyís Peter Pan (on Broadway and the touring company), art director for Honey, I Shrunk the Kids, and a host of other theatre, TV and movie credits. As he pointed out, his great great grandparents all died in their early 40s, so "lifetime" is relative, and itís wonderful to be recognized for his body of work.

He was a fascinating and quite affable guy and I enjoyed our time together. Now I have to write the article this evening.

Shortly after I came home, Walt arrived and suggested we go off to the Farmerís Marketís Wednesday night dinner, so we did, eating our pieces of Steve's Pizza on a bench, listening to nice music in the background and watching kids cavort in the city fountain in front of us.

So today was not remarkable for the amount of trash that got cleaned out, but in its own way, it was productive and enjoyable.

One Year Ago:
Baubles, Bangles and Bigots
(I had to giggle when I re-read this one. Halfway down the entry I came to the sentence, "I got inspired today to clean." Is it something about Spring?)

Some pictures from this journal
can be found at
Club Photo

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Created 4/4/01 by Bev Sykes