Monthly Archives: March 2011


Spring is tentatively springing; the air is becoming thicker with warmth and the insects are starting to make themselves known.

As are the neighborhood wanderers.

I understand that my home is a bit of an anomaly in Brooklyn; unlike brownstones or box apartments above store fronts, my old house at the back of the hill stands out and draws people in. I do not enjoy strangers at my home. I am not a philoxenist.

Philoxenist, from the Greek word philoxenus or “lover of foreigners”, is defined as one who is hospitable to strangers. Greeks are said to have considered any stranger a “guest” and modern Greek includes xenodocheion a “guest house” or “house for guests” or its modern version of “hotel”. [from]

Clearly, then, as I am a bit of a recluse and accustomed to a house filled with plants and non-human creatures, I am not a philoxenist.

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It’s a perfect and gloomy day in Brooklyn; it began precipitating last night and this morning a fine layer of snow covered everything. I’ve been drinking tea this morning and ruminating on my brother Mordecai, which leads me to today’s word.

Turveydrop is defined as a perfect model of deportment.

You might recognize the word from Dickens’ Bleak House and the character Mr. Turveydrop. A person of immaculate deportment could be described as Turveydropian.

What’s that? You don’t know what deportment is? My dears, deportment is the manner in which one conducts oneself. In other words, one’s behavior.

Mordecai fancies himself a turveydropian fellow. Sometimes this attitude gets my goat.

Today I shall simply sip my tea and then spend time in the laboratory, feeding the specimens. We could all stand an improvement in our deportment, though.

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Super Moon

As most of you, we experienced a Super Moon. The moon was 221,565 miles away, the closest it’s been to the Earth since 1993.

Did you feel the pull?

Did you run into any werewolves?

Bubo flew all night long; she traveled across Prospect Park and swooped south, skimming the sand at Coney Island. She met up with friends in The Green-wood Cemetery and when she came home, just before dawn, she was glistening with dew and moon bits.

I sat on the Widow’s Walk, basking in the moonlight, trying to identify constellations in the bright glow of this Super Moon. It made me smile to see so many people step outside and stop on the sidewalks to stare at the moon. We need to stop and stare at the moon more often, super or not.

Bubo apparently had very vivid dreams. While I herded the worms in the rain-soaked garden this morning, Bubo sat on my shoulder and told me her dreams. Have you ever heard the dreams of a great horned owl? If you have, then you know what my day has been like.

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Etched in a sketchbook

I enjoy bringing the curious and the odd to you, dear people. And I enjoy hearing from you about your enjoyment of the items from my rambling house.

This picture was sent from the South, showing the Cinereous Monk sketchbook in a natural habitat. I have a sketchbook in my knapsack right now. It’s important to be able to jot things down on the spur of the moment. Plus, scribbling in something often keeps strangers from speaking to you.

Besides, Bubo likes it when I draw portraits of her.

So vain, that one.

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