Tuesday, September 26

The DA

I have to admit...this makes me a little bit giddy.

View more stills at Mugglenet.

Tuesday, September 19

When fall comes to central Mississippi

I was glad of my green sweater this morning as I rolled the trash can to the street in the early morning chill. The plants on the back deck, still wet from yesterday’s rain, looked ready to face a new day. While all my plants receive the same amount of attention, some thrive and others languish. After each rain one plant in particular looks as if it could take over the world. It floors me when I see it, its leaves seemingly twice the size they were before. I make a Kramer-like jump and gasp, “The Healthiest Plant Ever!”

Meanwhile, my mint has died on me for the second year in a row (if anyone has any mint-growing tips, please pass them on!), and the grassy plant from Eudora Welty’s garden is in its ebb. I think of it as the phoenix plant because it dries up to almost nothing before shooting out fresh green spikes and beginning over again. The first time this happened I was alarmed. After all, it’s not every girl who has a cutting from the Welty garden. What if I killed my one plant with a pedigree? As the pattern repeated, I relaxed. I know that what it really wants is to get out of its pot and into the ground, but alas, I’m a renter and must content myself with container gardening.

I find that seasons call for different kinds of reading. Nineteenth century Russian and British novels for winter (Dostoyevsky, the Brontes, Dickens), and Lucy Maude Montgomery is well suited for spring. But autumn is harder to pinpoint. I read Walker Percy’s The Second Coming last fall, and it fit perfectly. I felt Allie’s urgency to prepare her greenhouse before cold weather settled in. This year I am reminded of the Inklings—Lewis and Tolkien understood the pleasures of a chilly tramp through woods and countryside followed by propping one’s feet up in a comfy chair with tea or pipe. So I’m bumping The Narnian and The Two Towers up on my reading list.

Friday, September 8

Back in black

As I strolled up to the storefront of the Gap last night, a grin crept onto my face when I saw dear Audrey Hepburn dancing across the glass windows. At the same time I was delighted to see her, I felt a tinge of... jealousy, perhaps? Gap has no more right to appropriate her image for commercial purposes than does anyone else. If Audrey were alive, I don't know that she would tell us to shop there, and she certainly wouldn't try to persuade us that every woman needs to dress as she did. She was a firm believer in every woman finding what worked for her, and then sticking to it—though fashions will change, if you wear what is flattering, you will always be in style.

Gap is launching "the skinny black pant" this fall, and who better to show it off than Audrey Hepburn? A commercial featuring Audrey dancing out of the Parisian cafe in Funny Face onto a blank background, then back into Funny Face, is running on TV right now. Inside the store, I noticed the black pant paired with ballet flats and black turtlenecks. Audrey's clean, classic sense of style is one I've admired since the first time I saw Roman Holiday years ago. I just finished reading Audrey Hepburn, An Elegant Spirit by her son Sean Ferrer. It was a refreshing change from most Hollywood biographies; she led a simple, lovely and sad life. The book begins with her childhood in occupied Holland during World War II and ends with an account of her time working as the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) ambassador, and a gentle call to action on the part of the reader.

Audrey Hepburn continues to influences us even after her death. "After so many drive-in waitresses becoming movie stars, there has been this real drought, when along come class; somebody who actually went to school, can spell, maybe even plays the piano. She may be a wispy, thin little thing, but when you see that girl, you know you're really in the presence of something," said director Billy Wilder. After my library reading and Gap shopping, I’m thinking about two things: First, what can I do to aid those in need? If unbelievers can work to help children in poverty, how much more should Christians be moved to action. Prayer first, then maybe Blood:Water Mission as a starting place. And secondly… maybe I should get some skinny black pants.

Friday, September 1

Free Derek Webb

No, this isn't a movement to get our favorite bald guitar player out of jail. Beginning today, Derek's latest album Mockingbird is available to dowload for free, in its entirety, at freederekwebb.com. Why is Derek doing this? I'll let him explain that. So what are you waiting for? Head over to freederekwebb.com right now, and while you're there spread the word. After all, it's free!