Links! First, if you follow me on Twitter, you saw this link already, but if you have missed it, it's worth reading. A man found an abandoned baby in the New York subway, and days later, became his dad:
The story of how Danny and I were married last July in a Manhattan courtroom, with our son, Kevin, beside us, began 12 years earlier, in a dark, damp subway station.
Danny called me that day, frantic. “I found a baby!” he shouted. “I called 911, but I don’t think they believed me. No one’s coming. I don’t want to leave the baby alone. Get down here and flag down a police car or something.” By nature Danny is a remarkably calm person, so when I felt his heart pounding through the phone line, I knew I had to run.
When I got to the A/C/E subway exit on Eighth Avenue, Danny was still there, waiting for help to arrive. The baby, who had been left on the ground in a corner behind the turnstiles, was light-brown skinned and quiet, probably about a day old, wrapped in an oversize black sweatshirt.
I could read this over and over and would tear up every time.
Jennifer sent me this link to a profile of a woman who runs a vintage cooking blog:
How would you categorize mid-century food?
Clark: Experimental. They were trying to get housewives to try these new products and use all these new techniques to make your life easier. Make a cake faster, make a soup faster, or use frozen foods for shortcut cooking. The mid-20th century saw an explosion of changes in all of American culture. People were testing out these new things discovered in World War II, like foods from different cultures, and also changes in technology, like frozen foods, that made more food available to more people.
People were experimenting with all these things they had never seen or used before, and they didn’t quite know what to do with them. If you watch that show “Chopped” on Food Network, I kind of think that’s what the mid-century cook felt like: We have all these weird ingredients, and what are we going to make with them? Well, let’s try this.
Being a completely normal denizen of the internet, Jennifer immediately “rummaged around her site and found this:”
This is where things got off track. This is where things went wrong. This is where people got hurt after the fun and games. This is where I cooked up a bunch of liver and buttermilk and gelatin and put it in a blender.
This is Liver Pate En Masque.
The very best part is her husband's participation in taste-testing the … whatever that is. And this site led me to 1972: The Retro WW Experiment, which is another vintage food blog focused on those absolutely bizarre Weight Watchers recipe cards. I'll be honest, I might lose weight because I've completely lost my appetite.
Henceforth, all dares shall involve gelatin, and possibly a glaze.
I'm over at Kirkus talking about Identifying your Reading Catnip:
…once you can identify what themes and elements you like best, you can find many, many more books to read, ones that you're very likely to enjoy. Being able to identify your own reader catnip is a powerful thing.
Everyone's romance catnip is different, too. My closest friends hardly ever recommend romances to me because my reading tastes are so different from theirs. But when I can identify a book that will absolutely appeal to one of them based on that fact that it contains a list of tropes I really dislike, I know whom to email immediately.
One excellent way to identify your favorite tropes is to look at the books on your keeper shelf. Which romances have you held onto, even to the point where they're falling apart, because you love to re-read them? Those books probably hold the secrets to your reading catnip.
So, what's your reading catnip? Do the books on your keeper shelf have any elements in common that you've identified? Has it helped you find books that you've enjoyed as much?