Thursday, January 20, 2011

Bears, Cars, and Feminine Sensibilities

On Tuesday I went for another lovely walk in another lovely snowstorm. Everyone seemed good-humored about having to balance on snowbanks. At one point, there was a man some distance ahead of me who was walking toward me and yelling that he wanted a bear. I wasn't sure what to make of this, but decided to cross to the other side of the street. Just in case he mistook me for a bear.

I also saw a man in a business suit carrying a 2 x 4. He wasn't yelling anything, just smiling pleasantly and swinging his 2 x 4 in a jolly manner.

Later, I sat in my front room writing, watching the snow get wetter and wetter. For a few minutes there, right before it turned to rain, the snowflakes were as big as cream puffs!

The longer I go not owning a car, the happier I am not to own a car. Those of you who've been around my blog for a while might remember how heart-rending it was way back when I lost my car. Preview: IT WAS HEART-RENDING WHEN I LOST MY CAR. But then I moved to a land where a person doesn't need to own a car! In addition to being close to lots of public transportation, I'm a member of Zipcar, which means I have access to a car whenever I need one. Which isn't very often. La la la. Are you bored yet? 'Cuz I could say more about this.

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Are those of you with access watching Downton Abbey on PBS? Oh my goodness, I love it. I am pretty much always a sucker for a good show that follows the stories of both nobility and servants on an English estate a long time ago. (In this case, the 19-teens.) How is this show so well-acted? Elizabeth McGovern as Countess Cora is HILARIOUS, her expressions are priceless. And I love Gwen and Molesly and Lady Mary! (WARNING: Spoilers to the end of this paragraph.) I keep writing down my favorite lines of dialogue. Here's something the Earl of Grantham said the other day to Carson, the butler: "We must have a care for feminine sensibilities. They are finer and more fragile than our own." The reason this is hilarious is that he is referring to the recent, unexpected death of a houseguest; the Earl is afraid that the ladies both upstairs and downstairs must be finding the whole thing very shocking; but what the Earl doesn't know is that the houseguest died in the bed of the Earl's oldest daughter, who then, in the dead of night, with the help of her mother (the Countess of Grantham) and Anna (the head housemaid), carried his stark-naked corpse miles across the entire house so that he would be discovered in his own bed in the morning.

Watch the full episode. See more Masterpiece.

That's an end to my ramblings for today, except to point out that teeny link above for watching full episodes. (And also t0 say that the preview is fine, but it doesn't convey the humor or the strength of the characters.) I'll leave you with a (spoiler-free) quote:

Earl of Grantham: And to think Taylor's gone off to run a tea shop. I cannot feel it will make for a very restful retirement, can you?
Carson, the butler: [gravely] I would rather be put to death, My Lord.
Earl of Grantham: [a bit alarmed] Quite so.