Saturday, January 29, 2011

miniature jam jars and stern resolve

Our broadband stopped working this week and it was all very peaceful here. Scottish Husband went into a bit of a decline, unable to browse for motorcycles, but I found it quite refreshing to be able to call a guilt-free halt to the search for perfect drawer-knobs.

Coincidentally, it happened as I was two chapters into The Winter of Our Disconnect, by Susan Maushart, "How one family pulled the plug on their technology and lived to tell/text/tweet the tale." I purchased this book online, and later saw it described on the back cover as "a hilarious tale." It has long been a stout rule of mine to avoid anything hilarious. It's a good book, nicely paced, full of engaging personal detail and fascinating facts for dotting about in conversation, but the relentless quips are distressing.


[My exciting new discovery: baby Bonne Maman jars!]

Back in the days when I used to lecture in Advanced Why (and sometimes, when my esteemed colleagues were indisposed or swanning off to conferences in the wine-producing regions, Advanced How), I tended to sprinkle my talks quite liberally with quips, so as to keep the attention of the merry souls at the back. How they must have hated me. Perhaps you do too. Here dawns my stately new quip-free self.

[Thank you very much to dear Sinead and Jacqueline, who kindly gave me blogging awards that require me to dish out 7 facts about myself. I'm walking tall as I work on the assignment, proud to be a 7-faceted person.]

30 comments:

  1. Au contraire, I love your quips. Perhaps you despise other hilarity because you are so much better at it. Huh? Huh? Am I right? :). That comes from some movie but I can't remember which.

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  2. Ha I listened to that book being read and then over discussed on radio 4, the over discussion and irritating voice of the lady reading it put me right off the tale! Glad you're back lovely, keep on quipping! x

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  3. Mise, how funny about your petite Bonne Maman jams. I had emailed you a few weeks ago and they served them in the restauraunt I was eating at in Las Vegas. I aksed the waiter for extra's and told him I was mailing them to Wales. When I didn't hear back from you I put them on my kitchen window sill and have grown very fond of them!

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  4. Mise,

    There's wit and there are quips. It's a little like comparing Tesco and Waitrose. I think you know which kind you sprinkle through your writing and I can't imagine your talks being anything less than razor sharp.

    x x x

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  5. Mise, who could possibly live totally quip free! Time away from the screen is a luxury to be savoured guilt (or perhaps quip) free. I read that book...must go back and look for the overly annoying bits now :)

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  6. Oh No Mise,
    What am I going to fill Baby Bonne Maman jars with ? It's back to the drawing board for me and I must search the deep recesses of my brain to come up with some ideas !!!! Back to my office and very late nights to come up with some new concepts....oh, it's tough at the top. C'est la vie !! XXXX

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  7. Life just doesn't get any better than finding mini Bonne Maman jars!
    Keep quipping - you do it well.

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  8. Not all quips are equal Mise. Yours are superior. But I do find myself feeling distressed when I re-read my old blog posts...

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  9. Ahhh, Mise your Quips are just "quippable", my dear, or is that "quoteable" well, no matter, I just love your humor, always fresh, fun, and........ "quippable"!

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  10. sounds like a good book for me. i so should read that.

    and glad to see i'm not the only jam jar dork in this world. brought two minis home from france : )

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  11. I collect these mini jars and love putting precious things in them-
    They serve them for High Tea at the Ritz where I go with girlfriends when someone comes into town to visit!

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  12. I lost power for a couple of days recently. It was very peaceful. If only I'd had a supply of baby Bonne Maman jars, to think what I'd have created during that time...

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  13. What? No more quips? That'll be the day!!

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  14. I couldn't bear that book being read on the radio - all that heavy faux-irony and 'meaningful' emphasis; I just wanted to slap the lot of them, and plug all their gadgets back in so that they could go back to silent, ear-budded isolation.

    I think that makes me a Not Very Nice Person......

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  15. Dear Mise,
    I just assumed that filling mini Bonne Mamman jars would be part of my job description, as I would think 'plus grande' ones would be !!....but feel free to advertise it as a new job. I am very willing to take them on though and for the samw wage. I don't think that you will get a better offer than that this side of Christmas hohoho !!!!
    Oh, and I am going for tea at The Ritz in a fortnight and Ren- Lady of The Arts says that they serve them there so, I will have to slip a couple 0of mini jars into my handbag and have a little practice. Maybe the Head Waiter will have a few ideas. I'll keep you posted. XXXX

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  16. We once had our TV go out. I thought that without it, I would read Jane Austen and invent craftiness with wood scraps and rubber bands. Instead, we fell asleep every evening as soon as the sun went down. It was "hilarious."

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  17. I daren't tell you what I have used these minature BM jars for in the past....I'll just give you two words...pregnant and sample! Shame on me! (Not recently, mind!)

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  18. Millie! I'm glad I don't have any of the dinky jars, since I now have that image in my head. Afternoon tea at the Ritz just won't be the same again.

    Mise, I'm assuming the indisposition of the other lecturers in Advanced Questioning was something to do with all the wine- how unfair of them to leave you out. Perhaps it was all the quipping? Mind you, I'm at the back of the hall, so I have no problem with it :)

    Empirical research (book club books) proves that books described by publishers as 'hilarious' rarely are. Unless they're by David Sedaris.

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  19. Don't know when I started leaning toward more glass storables rather that so much plastic, but I do prefer glass. I quickly went through 5 jars of Bonne Maman cherry perserves to start my set - man, I love that stuff. The jars also make cute gift packaging for all your home grown seasonings - actually I do not need any for that purpose - but others might.
    Sometimes it is nice to not have tv, radio or even a telephone. We can find time to reaquaint ourselves with those other people we find around the house, and finish up non-technological chores.

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  20. I wish i'd been down the back to witness that, i'd have loved your quips....AND insights...could you upload them? Please

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  21. Is everyone going to the Ritz to have tea? Please wait for me.

    Millie, I'm going to need counselling now.

    Jaboopee, my academic days were a good while ago, pre YouTube and video-phones. I'd never dare stand up and speak now for fear of all of that sort of thing.

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  22. That's what happens when you put the strawberry conserve and the marmalade too close together: Petit Bebe Bon Mamans!

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  23. I'm intrigued to know what kept you quipping instead of quaffing when your colleagues went off on the wine trails.
    Now I know you like miniature Bonne Maman jars, I shall keep mine for you. The girls don't play pretend dinner parties anymore anyhow. They just ask me for sips of my wine in the evening.

    Of course, I say no. I'm far too wise to share my wine ;-)

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  24. Oh where would we be indeed without some humor in our daily lives? Every country has a different way and the Irish have got to be masters at it!
    Vickixx

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  25. I think it is the chocolate... although the second glass of wine certainly makes everyone else witty and interesting. You'd better ease off the chocolate now that you've pledged to lay off the quips...

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  26. MOTH could have used these jars this week, he had to trawl the neighbourhood looking for 136 jars for a very large batch of apricot jam he made. The blokie blokes in our lane will never look at him in quite the same way. Keep the quips in & for goodness sake don't get serious on us, I couldn't bear it!
    Millie x
    P.S. Your comment over @ Jane's today stole my heart away Mise. You can write girl, I mean REALLY write.

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  27. Quip away dearest Mise...don’t change a thing.

    We got our first computer ever almost a year ago to the date. I’ll never give it up now. I call it “the brain”. It’s ideal when you reach middle age and can’t remember a bloody thing. glad you are back up and running.

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  28. Got distracted by the mini Bonne Maman jars....

    Sorry, something about Scottish Husband making quips and books about declining motocycles with drawer-knobs?

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  29. I loved the Bonne Maman selection in the grocery shops of Paris. I was even able to find Bonne Maman Rhubarbe. Fromage blanc plus rhubarb confiture was soon my breakfast of choice. I did think of you while making my purchase. Enjoy your petite jars. Cheers to the glorious Bonne Maman!

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You're looking particularly well.

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