cornu copiae

The “horn of plenty,” cornucopia in English, has long been a symbol of abundance and prosperity…

one of the Penates holding a cornu copiae and a patera (Source)

one of the Penates holding a cornu copiae and a patera (Source)

In ancient Roman material, it is very often seen in the hands Roman household divinities…the Lares, and especially the Penates, who were the guardians of the household pantry.

In more recent times, the cornucopia has become a symbol of the abundance of the fall harvest, and for Americans, a ubiquitous symbol of Thanksgiving.

cornucopia

This year (like last) I have declined the summons of my sister that we trek 60 minutes to the north to join the “whole family” for Thanksgiving dinner.  I have decided that I am lately most thankful for the newfound ability to say “No thank you.”  I’ve even tempted my parents to own that they’d rather not drive that distance to endure the inevitable angst that had become our “whole family” gathering.

So, this year my parents are taking the 1.5 mile trek to my house for dinner.  I’m shooting to eat around 4pm (dark enough for dinner, but leaving time for digestion  🙂 )

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Since there will only be six of us (one who doesn’t eat meat “if bones are present) I’ve opted to make just a turkey breast instead of the whole bird.  The turkey is kind of a secondary attraction…at Obscura’s house, it’s all about the sides – mostly veggies (I count 7 individual vegetable dishes not including the mandatory mashed potatoes)  I don’t entertain often, so I’m also especially delighted to have the opportunity to use the beautiful crockery (pictured above) that I picked up near Kalovryta, Greece this fall.

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Last but not least, there’s the pies.  I baked them last evening (I’ll thank you to ignore the broken crust on the pumpkin pie…maybe I’ll pipe on some cream to camouflage it!).

I’m off to grab a last minute latte at the Kwik Trip before I settle in to begin the prep in earnest, but before I do, I wanted to take the opportunity to wish everyone who celebrates it a Blessed and Happy Thanksgiving…and a Blessed and Happy DAY to the rest of Armitageworld!

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Frozen Motion: Richard Armitage and the Discobolos of Myron

I’ve been tossing this piece around for a couple of weeks…since watching episode 1 of Berlin Station.   Then I was distracted by a trip to New York to see some play…my account is coming soon.

I’ve been kind of hot and cold about Berlin Station – I’m no TV critic, but for it’s genre, I’ve found the overall pace of the show to be rather slow and it’s plot to be extra convoluted, even for a spy show.   I think the last few episodes have picked it up a bit, so I’m hanging in there.  Who am I kidding – I’d be there to the bitter end as long as Richard Armitage is a part of the cast 

One element that grabbed my attention in Episode 1 was a brief flash of mostly bare Richard Armitage.  Apart from purely prurient interest, this is enticing to me from an artistic perspective since the artistic material I study generally features figures depicted in the buff, and similarly nude shots of Richard Armitage are fairly few and far between.  In case you’ve forgotten it, the scene I’m referring occurs about midway through episode 1.

Pretty dark...pretty grainy, but you get the drift.  (my screen shot)

Pretty dark…pretty grainy, but you get the drift. (my screen shot)

In this scene, Armitage’s character, Daniel Miller has just stepped out of the shower and is bending to pull on his briefs.  The bent position, that long, LOOOONNNNNGGGG length of leg and subtly rippling back reminded me immediately of the motion that is frozen by Myron in his iconic Discobolos (Δισκοβόλος – Discus Thrower)

Discobolus of Myron

Discobolus of Myron (Source)

All of the examples pictured are Roman copies in marble of the Greek original.  Like so many ancient Greek sculptures, the original piece by Myron was sculpted in bronze and has been lost to time.  What we can piece together from the copies is that the original belonged stylistically to the very end of the Severe Style of the 5th century BC.

Myron was a contemporary of the sculptors Pheidias and Polykleitos and was well known for his frequent depictions of athletes.  Here he has captured the discus thrower in mid-motion…the viewer can almost feel the arrested energy of the athlete.  The Discobolos is a masterpiece of both frozen motion as well as the ideals of beauty, symmetry and proportion of 5th century Athens.

armitage-discobolos-side-by-side

Laying the images side by side for comparison, a couple of things become evident:

  1.  While not exactly the same pose, I’m again struck by the general similarity of the frozen motion.
  2. Richard Armitage is clearly not conformant with the proportional canon as idealized by the ancient Greeks…his legs are much longer and his torso somewhat shorter.               2.1:  Who cares?  🙂  

**Happily, I capped the scene right before I had to look away in horror as Daniel picked up the towel he is standing on in the cap above and used the surface recently in contact with the bathroom floor to dry his hair.  ICK cubed.**

Red Lip it is…

My little poll came up even, but since I’m currently sitting in the airport waiting for my flight to New York, the timing for “a red lip” seems spot on.

I am certainly no fashion maven. I tend to veer away super trendy style choices in favor of more “timeless” or “classic” styles – read things that aren’t out of style by the time I get home from the shop.  My personal style is predicated by budget (Obscura likes a good deal) as well as a certain sprinkle of goofball.  

I suppose my current travel ensemble bears this out…

Nothing terribly exciting…jeans and a long sleeve tee.  I bought the rust colored jeans last year on super sale…the color is a little out there for me, but they’re growing on me.  The houndstooth slip on sneaker (Old Navy’s version of a Van) is not only fun, but perfect for scooting through the TSA check.

Overall, I like what I like, but I always have a moment of pause when I travel…what to wear, what to wear?  I hate standing out in a crowd as immediately identifiable as TOURIST.  Nothing wrong with being a tourist, I just like to blend in a bit with the local habitat.  

I noticed on my last trip to New York that I had no trouble blending in…dark wash or black denim, boots, dark coat, seemed to be a uniform of sorts.  When I started to plan for my short weekend in NYC for LLL, the offspring formerly reffered to as Showbiz (said offspring has requested to be called Miss Desmond henceforth…yes, in reference to Norma

He approved all my choices (centering mostly around black bottoms and a selection of my favorite tops and accessories.) Lately Miss Desmond has discovered a talent for makeup artistry and so shared the immortal advice,

“You can never go wrong with a red lip Mom”

And so, one trip to the Walgreens cosmetic aisle and about four rejected reds later, we settled on:
“Red Revival”  

💋💋💋💋💋

….coming soon to a stage door near you!  😉