1. What does Veteran's Day / Remembrance Day mean to you?
I read an interesting blog post recently: Simone Weil and Homer, by David Beardsley, on the Circe Institute blog. This is the part that struck me:
By not making the clear connection to the one war, however, she made a clear connection to all War; to the eternal process that is inevitable when one country, one sect, one person, seeks domination over another.
She also describes those moments of love that do break through the “monotonous desolation:” hospitable, filial, brotherly, conjugal, even the friendship that can occur between mortal enemies such as Achilles and Priam. “These moments of grace,” she says, “are rare in the Iliad, but they are enough to make us feel with sharp regret what it is that violence has killed and will kill again.”
2. What's your favorite film with a patriotic theme woven into the storyline?
Right now I'm in the middle of reading War and Remembrance, so I guess that counts too.
But a movie? How about the 1979 O Canada T.V. signoff?
3. Flu shot-yes or no? If you answered no, do you plan to get a flu shot? If not, why not? Have you ever had the flu?
I am ambivalent about the shot, that's all I can say. And yes, I've had the flu. To quote Jan Karon: "It feels like you've just eaten a dish of Miss Rose's week-old, unrefrigerated banana pudding and on are on your way to the emergency room in the back of a van that's been lived in through a long, hard winter by seven Russian wolfhounds..."
4. I've seen lots of people posting pictures of their Christmas trees up and decorated. Many stores have had Christmas on display since well before Halloween. Red cups are back at Starbucks, sans the holiday decor; and that has some people up in arms. What are your thoughts on all the holiday ruckus this second week of November?
My November ruckus is just about making things--it's the month when the holiday crafting roundups appear, and I'm usually in the mood to sew or crochet something. I pretty much ignore whatever other quasi-holiday stuff is going on out there, until after we light the first Advent candle.
5. What 'critter' are you most afraid of encountering unexpectedly? Why that one?
I am not really afraid of bugs, other than the fact that they can bite you and make you sick. I cheerfully swat them, or go somewhere else without feeling particularly traumatized. However, I am phobic about mice. I've decided that the differences between mice and bugs are a) they're bigger, and b) they have faces, c) with teeth. Hamsters, I was okay with; I usually knew the hamster. (We haven't had a hamster here since Snowball.) Mice are just anonymous housebreakers. I'm not so sure about Rose Fyleman's "I think mice are nice"; I agree more with the lines that come before that one: "They nibble things they shouldn't touch, and no-one seems to like them much."
6. Do you like building things? What's the last thing you 'built'?
No, not really a builder here. Mr. Fixit is the tool guy.
7. In keeping with this month's theme of gratitude...what are you most grateful for that brings beauty to your daily life?
The sugar maple beside our driveway, for its greenness in the summer and its orangeness in the fall.