Movies watched at home are not visual babysitters.
Not to plunk a child down to, turn the TV on, and go about your work, rid of the little suckers.
Not an approval of endless hours in front of a screen.
Movie watching is a shared experience like no other.
A chance to challenge your child, with vocabulary, with plot intricacies, character development, values, and expansion of attention span.
Children need our participation to mine all of these goodies from the experience; and more, to bond with their movie mate.
Helping our children reach.
They growing; we parenting.
Sunday, November 4, 2018
My 208th consecutive posting.
Time is 12.01am.
Boston’s temperature will reach a high of 52* and it will be partly sunny.
Dinner is Roast Turkey., using the slow-roast, broil, hot oven finish according to our recipe.
Quiz Question of the Day:
How does fresco work?
At an early age Michelangelo realized that he would paint not what he saw but how he felt when he saw it. For him, a fresco began when he decided what moment of his subject’s life he would portray.
Love your notes.
Contact me @ firstname.lastname@example.org
Here’s a note from my North End friend, Victor Passacantilli.
(BTW: scungilli can be any type of large sea snail, like conch. I love them in bouillabaisse for their flavor and texture, very chewy.)
Joe Sarno, Lenny Raffa and I met for dinner last night in Dania Beach, FL.
Joe located an Italian restaurant (with Google’s help) that served scungilli.
Joe and Lenny were impressed.
I chose baked ziti with ricotta.
Should have ordered the scungilli.
Mangia bene, vivere bene!
So I asked Victor, “How was the scungilli prepared?”
‘‘Cooked in a Marinara Sauce and served over a bed of linguini.”
Answer to Quiz Question:
How does fresco work?
Fresco is a technique of mural painting executed upon freshly laid, or wet lime plaster.
Water is used as the vehicle for the dry-powder pigment to merge with the plaster, and with the setting of the plaster, the painting becomes an integral part of the wall.
Intonaco is traditionally a mixture of sand (with granular dimensions less than two millimeters) and a binding substance.
The fresco technique has been employed since antiquity and is closely associated with Italian Renaissance painting.
The first layer of plaster applied is called arriccio, and is laid slightly coarsely to provide grip for the final layer, the intonaco.
The arriccio must be allowed to dry, usually for some days, before the final very thin layer, the intonaco, is paddled on.
Sometimes the arriccio layer is gouged to ensure that the next layer, the intonaco binds.
When the painter is ready, the final plaster layer, the intonaco, a very thin layer of plaster on which a fresco is painted, is troweled onto the precise area that will be painted that day.
Next, the cartoon, an exact preparatory drawing for the portion of the fresco to be painted this day, is held against the plaster and pinpricked along the outlines of the design. A bag of granulated charcoal is patted or "pounced" over the cartoon leaving black dots on the plaster to guide the artist in his painting. The cartoon is removed and the charcoal dots on the plaster are linked with red ocher paint leaving the outlines of the figures for the artist to perform his miracles.
The paint goes on while the intonaco is still wet, in order to allow the pigment to penetrate into the intonaco itself.
A helper often keeps the intonaco wet while waiting for the painter to get to the spot.
Sometimes a verdaccio is applied before the painting, a mixture of black, white, and yellow pigments resulting in a grayish or yellowish (depending on the proportion) soft greenish brown.
Verdaccio became an integral part of fresco painting, in which this color is used for defining tonal values, forming a complete monochromatic underpainting.
Often architectural details in frescoes are left in verdaccio without any additional color layers; a notable example is the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, where verdaccio underpainting can be clearly seen, left as it is on all architectural details of the composition.
The artist works from colored sketches.
Colors stay on the surface covered by a crystalline coating of carbonate of lime.
The burnt lime recovers its carbonic acid from the air, fixing the colors.
Not only does the cartoon serve as an aid to the artist, but it serves to accurately link the component parts of the composition that are painted on damp plaster over a series of days.
Cartoons by painters, such as the Raphael Cartoons in London, and examples by Leonardo da Vinci, are highly prized in their own right.
Howard, the Existential Flaneur, responding to his reaction after Victor ate baked ziti in an unnamed restaurant:
That’s one of those expressions that’s life in a nutshell. Or a conch shell.
In the Caribbean or parts of it anyway, they beat the conch in some manner I never managed to ascertain. Not that I tried very hard to find out. What I mainly used to do on my many trips to Coral Bay, St. John USVI, back in the day—not that long ago actually, though my last trip there was in 2008—aside from visiting my friends Mikki or Steve, the lucky stiffs who owned a house down there, was eat a lot of seafood and barbecue, drink a lot of beer or a drink called a Painkiller, and go for walks to places that most people elected to get to by car (a safe bet that it’s virtually anywhere, as simply no one walks, anywhere on the island, not even to their favorite bar and grill, which was my usual destination).
In any event, the conch, with which they did things besides pounding it that transcended merely dropping pieces into a sauce, like Marinara, ended up losing a great deal of its resilience, but retained enough texture to give it bite and a reason to hang around in your mouth a little longer so you could savor its flavor.
I’m sure you appreciate octopus for that same quality of what you call “chewiness” for the same reasons that you have a penchant for cooking pork ribs that require using your teeth to rip bits of resistant flesh from the bone. As if there were no spectrum of toughness, from tendonous impenetrability to chicken “oyster” ethereal liquidity (those two ovoid bits of meat under the skin on the carcass somewhere aft of the wing joints*, and usually missed by the unenlightened—there’s a lovely bit in the movie “Amélie,” which happens to be one of my favorites of the French movies of the common era, wherein she finds the man, who was the boy who decades before had secreted his store of treasures, kept in an old confectionery box, which she finds by accident deeply embedded in the hollow walls of her apartment in Paris; she bothers to seek him out with some laborious and ingenious detective work, and he is so overjoyed, his life having sunk into a slough of late middle age despair, that he resolves to make it up with his estranged daughter, and finally to see his grandson whom he has never seen even though the boy is now the same age he was when he hid his treasures in the wall, and to prepare roast chicken for him, so they can share his absolutely favorite part, the oyster, and all of which discourse is depicted on screen in a series of rapid jump cuts, while the voice over narrator quickly explains pretty much what you are looking at that I have encapsulated here).
It would be an interesting psychological expedition, I suppose, to figure out why you have such a fixation, but it wouldn’t make anything taste any better. And you may like scungilli for its toothsome resistibility maybe because it has something to do with that quality capturing one of the essential dimensions to the nature of existence. But before I say, “but that’s where I came in,” I’ll also add that, of course, I and others happen to know you have a decided appetite for oysters as well.
*[what Wikipedia says, clinically, about the oysters on a chicken: “two small, round pieces of dark meat on the back of poultry near the thigh, in the hollow on the dorsal side of the ilium bone.” in case you want to go looking for them.
Here’s the illustration they provide:
And so, Good Morning, this Sunday, November 4.
We’ve talked about movie watching with children, frescoes, and scungilli with Victor and Howard.
And we’ve looked at some images.
Che vuoi? Le pocketbook?
Have a good day, my friends.
See you soon.