• Learning and Exploring

    Chicago Pizza

    We went to visit friends near Chicago a couple months ago. So we couldn’t go to a downtown place, but we still did manage two pizza places in one day, the first for thin crust and the second for deep dish.

    We ate at Aurelio’s first, and we ordered one big (18″) pizza and a couple people got a few other items. I got pasta and a salad and had a tiny bit of pizza. But between 8 women and teenage girls the pizza disappeared (with some encouragement and challenging). Also, if you go, you need to ask for brick oven crust to have the best crust made on the old ovens.

    For supper we ate at Beggar’s, a restaurant in an old theater. I had enough brains to get a iphone photo of the pizza but not enough to get one of the venue :(. And here we had deep dish. Now, I am not a pizza person in large part because I am not a tomato person, so I was not expecting to love a pizza famous for tons of sauce. I didn’t, but I loved the crust from this place. It might have sauce in it (oh, contradictory person) as it was peachy colored, but in any case it was delicious.

    After pizza we wound up with ice cream from an old-fashioned ice cream shop called Gayety’s. Perfect.

  • Learning and Exploring

    Not Finishing Books, Unpronounceable Foods, and Learning to be Cultured.

    So, I picked up a YA novel from an author I had seen mentioned in the blog-sphere. And foul language smacked me in the face. So much. I skimmed it, teetering in my mind. No, there was NO justification.

    I started The Sound and the Fury; it sucked me in but confused me, so I was impatient to find out the story via Wikipedia. I flipped ahead. Wait, what. Perhaps I had better put it down. Wikipedia. Yeah, not quite as bad as I thought, but still no.

    My brother and sister-in-law watching a certain old film for “culture.” I looked it up, familiar with the name, not the plot, no.

    I am sorry, but grovelling in the dirt no matter how gilded the medium makes said dirt CANNOT be a good activity. And there ARE more uplifting aspects of culture. I understand facing some of the evil in the world, yes. But not wallow in it like a pig, especially in fiction. Find some real reality.

    I know how to find good, well-written books. I can find classic movies. But there are some areas in which I have no point of reference (opera) or feel awkward (gourmet food, at least the pronunciation).

    Here is a lovely blog set up to help some of us who feel like country bumpkins to inspire ourselves to be cultured. I already tried to at least set standards for better reading, but I need to work better in other areas of high culture. Maybe become a little more aware (gag) of some pop culture aspects.

    Now before I go on, let me say that one can still be cultured without being obsessed with certain genres. A person does not have to like every single famous book, film, etc. A person is not truly cultured if he has not cultivated his own tastes nor is a snob truly cultured, etiquette is important too. Nor do I think that a person ought to only be interested in high culture. That is rather flat and one-dimensional. And of course merely knowing some information while possessing no skills is not truly cultured. Yes, I know I sound like Miss Bingley, but I consider such things as walking on country roads an essential part of a person’s repertoire of activities.

    I have taken up piano again after close to a decade hiatus, and while it is still quite apparent that I am not gifted in this area, I still enjoy playing. I need to pursue a study of music and musicals.

    I also am using Duolingo. Let me just say that my Latin professors were the best. The carefully taught grammar allowed me to more easily pursue other languages. I plan on ordering tons of note cards, dictionaries, and grammar books to supplement. I also want to pursue some way of conversing in foreign languages, but for now I am doing so much better than before.

    I want to formulate a list of subjects to study and skills to learn.