Saturday, 31 October 2009


Happy Hallowe'en, All Saints Day and Celtic new year!

Friday, 30 October 2009


This week, I went to the Alan Bruford memorial lecture entitled Landscape, Memory and the Diasporic Imagination, which was so interesting considering my Welsh heritage. I also had a seminar on oral- and folk-narrative, the second being what I prefer to christen what I write here; it means, in basic terms, the expression of opinions and the sharing of experience.

I listened endlessly to the mesmerising St Vincent, whose "The Party" I first heard on a flight to New York via Paris...just how all great love stories should start.

I also made banana bread by adapting this recipe; I'm trying to buy more seasonal produce, but when I saw two very sad looking battered and bruised bananas in my student union shop for 10p each, there was only one thing to do. It turned out quite nicely, so please try it out if you are inclined to enjoy sticky sweet banana treats on misty autumn evenings.

Banana Bread
140g plain flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
sprinkle salt
55g butter (and a bit for greasing)
55g dark brown sugar
55g caster sugar
1 free-range egg
2 over-ripe mashed bananas
40ml milk mixed with a dash of lemon juice
(you could try the recipe with 1 tsp vanilla extract or a squeeze of honey...I'm also going to experiment with golden syrup or treacle as a substitute for a portion of the sugar)

1. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4 and grease a medium sized baking tin or heatproof dish with butter.
2. Cream the butter and sugars together.
3. Add the egg, banana and milk.
4. Sieve the flour, baking powder and salt in, bit by bit, and fold into the mixture. It should be just mixed and the consistency of runny porridge.
5. Pour into the tin or dish, and then bake for about an hour, or until it's golden-brown and a knife comes out clean when you stab it.
7. Eat immediately, still warm and with a glass of milk, or turn it out and onto a wire rack to cool and keep for later.

In the coming weeks, I intend to blow my entire month's monetary allowance on films. After what feels like years of counting down, I am so excited to see Up, Fantastic Mr Fox and Where The Wild Things Are that I might just watch them one after another after another. And with my new membership with cute little local renting shop, Vogue Video, I feel able to make a dent in my intimidatingly lengthy "films to-do" list...

I feel like I was so happy to see autumn this year that I forgot about that oh so important transition from summer to September and onwards. The softness of air in the evenings when the thermometer lets the mercury drop down a little more each night. The gradual swap between sandals and scarves. The last ice cream.

john t.

Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Hallowed Eve

Hallowe'en is a big deal in Edinburgh. Auld Reekie has a dark and ghastly past, a history full of horror and littered with villains. We have costumed ghostwalkers and historical re-enacters running amok in the city throughout the rest of the year, but things go further at Hallowe'en. Last year, you couldn't walk a street on 31st October without a run-in with witches, dead celebrities, headless horsemen and a ghoul or two.
This year, I might take my cue from El Día de los Muertos...after all, this is the time of year for peoples of different beliefs across the entire globe to pay respects to the dead, not just the esoteric residents of Edinburgh.

Tuesday, 27 October 2009


The first annual pumpkin carving competition! We drank homemade mulled wine, ate flapjack and listened to Michael Jackson in honour of the winning 'Jacko lantern' pumpkin, a tribute to the late great. I can't wait to cook all the gooey orange innards we so gorily scraped out of our victims - pumpkin soup and pie and muffins ahoy!

Sunday, 25 October 2009


I am practicing braiding my own hair and being a better person.

100% Shetland wool jumper - Barnardo's Vintage / maroon pinstriped shirt - borrowed from V.

I also made herb, cheese and olive scones. The recipe needs a bit more attention and I think they'd be best served with minestrone soup, but for now I'm buttering them up with cream cheese and filling my boots.

Saturday, 24 October 2009

I Am No Longer Dead I Am In Love

Let's treat the world like a white blank page, scrawl our thoughts and fears and worries and joys across the empty waiting canvas for all to see!

Friday, 23 October 2009

Mother o' Mine

I have been lucky enough to always know my mother. She's suffered through nineteen years' worth of tantrums, helped with learning lines and finishing last minute school projects, and provided for me in every way imaginable . I've written bad poems for her and hand-made Mothering Sunday cards, I've been a bad and bothersome daughter and I've been there for her as wholly as I could be there for anyone, just as she has unfailingly always been there for me. She is my guidepost and role model and number one fan and advisor on everything. She is beautiful inside and out. One of the things I want most in the world is to make her as proud of me as I am of her.

Happy birthday Mama!

Thursday, 22 October 2009

What Manner Of Men?

According to R.H. Barrow, Roman men "would willingly be judged by their history, for to them history meant deeds". Res gestae, the Latin term for history, literally means 'things done'. Here is my most recent res gestae - judge away.

Earl Grey and cupcakes with special girls...
appreciation of the way peppermint tea makes your mouth feel...
pretty boys in plaid riding red bicycles...
funny tummy-rumbling in the library...
doughnuts and a rum hurricane...
wet hair and bedsocks...
squirrel spotting and pigeon watching...
excessive consumption of the work of Frank O'Hara...
a freshly made bed...
Mansfield Park...
pumpkin seed crispbreads slathered in peanut butter and strawberry jam...

Sadly, none of these can erase the fact that I have a 750 word gobbet to write for tomorrow.

Tuesday, 20 October 2009

Navajo Diamond

I almost set the microwave on fire. I next-to-never have kitchen accidents so this was particularly saddening - I feel like I've blotted my kitchen copybook and tarnished my clean record.
I am running to and from lectures, and listening to cocoRosie and The Field Mice. And it's so strange; almost exactly a year after a post where I mooned over Bat For Lashes, I'm seeing the glorious Natasha Khan tonight in concert. How fortuitous! So excited...

white rabbit

kersti p.

Post Script, 27th November;

Prescilla and Daniel and The Wizard and was amazing.

Monday, 19 October 2009

Ex Caelo

"Ex caelo" is the Latin term for the divinatory practice of observing storms in order to interpret what the thunder and lightning are telling you will happen. Regardless of the lapse in ancient religions, I like to think that some remnant of them remains in us today. There is something prophetic about the weather. I love the smell of a storm coming.

Today is for hot chocolate, learning about auspices and auguries, eating gherkins and coconut-covered chocolate biscuit balls (but not together), the contemplation of an exchange to a pretty prestigious New York college, making playlists and daydreaming. It is a cosy grey passing afternoon, for leather boots and feather quilts and hardbacked books. It is a day narrated by Iron & Wine and Regina Spektor and Johnny Flynn.

dress - gift from Sophia / tights - H&M / boots - Russell&Bromley / bag - Barnardo's Vintage

I am coming more and more to the conclusion that Cicero and I could have been tight as a fist. He got sad sometimes but stuck to his guns, and came out with some pretty remarkable things. Three cheers for the man who said "the sin is not in him who gave the warning, but in he that disregarded it."

Sunday, 18 October 2009

Learning Lessons

The best things almost always happen when you make a decision to do something, make a choice to be happy.

the heartwrenching handiwork of Siri at Ringo, have a banana

Life, take a lesson - this is how to be.

Wednesday, 14 October 2009

Run My Mouth

white top - H&M / Abercrombie cardigan - charity shop / wrap skirt and bird necklace - homemade / boots - Dr Martens

"Oh maiden where
wishest thou to go
with these sherds?
Lay down and cover
bones and bottle
And be for me again
a faithful lover!" - Ludolph Smids

This is a poem was written in the 17th century for the woman he commissioned to examine archaeological finds on the site of a megalithic tomb, Titia Brongersma who was a poet herself. Poetry in an archaeology lecture? I love it when my favourite things collide.

Support gay marriage! Today was for vegan brownies from Forest and little look in at the Jean Jullien exhibition at Analogue. I so want his Meat Eat Meat tee (ironic and just for kicks, as I'm living with two lovely liberal vegetarians...although I have got a hankering for a big barbequed steak).

Tuesday, 13 October 2009

Remember Me This Way, Glamour Boy

Crystalised - The xx.

They remind me of in-between days a year or more ago. Like a lullaby from another lifetime. I can't sleep well lately and I think Alice Sebold's 'Conviction' is partially to blame. Forgetting things, long nights and dark days, daylight savings.
"You save yourself or you remain unsaved."

lie down with me
a beating creature
hummingbird heart in a silent night.
sink into me
a stone in water
breathe rippling skin in candlelight.
fall hard for me
a drowning star
and i am blinded by the sight.

Monday, 12 October 2009

Sunday, 11 October 2009

To Be Unforgettable

I am both thrilled and terrified about the film adaptation of "The Lovely Bones". It is one of my most favourite books and I can't watch it if it will be ruined. Please let it be as beautiful on screen as it is on paper.

Peace & Hate - The Submarines

"We are sharing our imperfections." - Murakami (Norwegian Wood)

Friday, 9 October 2009


I took a scenic tour of my village today - through the churchyard in which I fiercely gathered conkers on the walk to Harvest Festival at St Wilfrid's, the place where I was christened, from my primary school of the same name, where I made my first friends and learned my first lessons, and back through the streets I grew up on.
Tonight I had homemade chutney, and then sat in the pub I used to work in (shortlisted for one of the best pubs in Britain, no less) and drank strawberry beer with my ma and da, and talked and talked about everything from the river-god cult of the Mesolithic Iron Gates Gorge in Germany, to how and when they first knew that they wanted to be with each other forever. Then we came home, and made tea and fruit toast.
Coming home is always so strange; things do and don't change, and I never feel the same way twice.

Barnardo's Today

A while back
the lovely Ellie, James and I were interviewed at the little shop I volunteer at once a week. I finally got to send it home for my parents to put on the fridge in all its cheesy-grinned glory.

Thursday, 8 October 2009

Not A Unicorn

I Was Born (A Unicorn) - The Unicorns

...and before I forget - please, DONATE.