All of my life I have been interested in people, how they live, how they think, what they do, what they say. Not the powerful, the rich, the “successful”, not interested in them, there is way too much in the media about them, predictable, violent, vicious, and boring. Here is a woman, Ruth Goodman, who has made a career of looking at the lives of some of our ordinary ancestors. I have watched quite a few episodes of the series, that she has been involved in, enjoyed every one of them.

Worldly Distractions


Little House in the City

Date: 5:00 AM EST Thursday 26 February 2015
Condition: Not observed
Pressure: 102.1 kPa
Tendency: falling
Temperature: -22.5°C
Dewpoint: -25.7°C
Humidity: 75%
Wind: NNE 9 km/h
Wind Chill: -30

Date: 5:00 AM EST Thursday 26 February 2015
Condition: Cloudy
Pressure: 102.1 kPa
Visibility: 16 km
Temperature: -26.6°C
Dewpoint: -29.2°C
Humidity: 79%
Wind: calm


“Much of the social history of the Western world over the past three decades has involved replacing what worked with what sounded good.”
Thomas Sowell

[When the world actually does reach the crisis caused by “progress”, if people ask, “what happened?”, the answer will be, “we chose to follow the powerful and not the wise.” Often we are willing victims of the powerful and the ambitious. I do not count myself as an exception, as I live in North America and function here, and I don’t believe you can function if you aren’t following the rules in some sense. Perhaps I am not exactly willing, more worn down by protesting. We can only do our best.]


  1. TopsyTurvy (Teri)

    Your video made me smile, Maggie. Especially the music, and Ruth Goodman herself. I wish she’d shown more of the hairstyling.

    Your quote and comment at the bottom are so true! The world is awash with replacing what worked with what sounds good. Just look at how they’re trying to teach math in schools lately for an example.

    I hope we find our way back to what works (and harms none) very quickly.

  2. Loved this post of the *ordinary*. I recently read a review of *Islands of the Blest* – a book of B&W photos of the ordinary in America spanning the 1800s to 1970 – I many be oversimplifying. I’m very much drawn to the extraordinary in the ordinary. Perhaps explaining my affection for Outsider Artists.

  3. I hope we find our way back too Teri! The young seem to think they can learn skills through books, or trial and error, which is foolish in the extreme. “Skill” by its very definition requires discernment, which book learning, and trial and error, cannot provide. There is no substitute for experience. Having grown up on a farm, where we worked on the land, harvested our crops, raised animals for our own food, I understood how much there was to learn, and how skilled my elders were. Instead of dismissing the older generation as out of touch, the young should be trying to learn all they can from old people.

    The most foolish statement I ever heard was a young “hipster” father, in response to a statement thanking parents for passing along love and guidance, claiming that he was learning how to raise children from his three year old child. He had wonderful parents, so I regarded it as insulting in the extreme that he delegitimized what he learned from his elders, in favour of an inexperienced, sheltered, and precocious child. I found his statement shameful and ignorant! His statement was popular with young parents though, which I found disturbing.

  4. I do think your Art Collection is amazingly eclectic and celebrates the heart of humanity in so many ways Reenie! I will have a look for that book in the library system, you never know, I might find it!

  5. Bex

    That hairdo was how Jane Eyre did her hair – at least in all the different versions of the movie I’ve seen. I loved the video! And that concoction of “hair spray” just made me shiver! Vodka? in your hair? I wonder that the ladies’ hair didn’t all fall out!

  6. TopsyTurvy (Teri)

    Bex, ladies are putting alcohols on their hair all the time! Just look at the ingredients of most shampoos and hairsprays for ingredients that end in -ol. Those are alcohols. 😉

  7. NORA

    Oops…I didn’t mean that I would try this hair style, I don’t have enough hair! I just meant I wondered of the concoction would keep my hair from being wayward. 🙂

  8. TopsyTurvy (Teri)

    I think it would work for your hair, Nora. Gum arabic is a component of the old mucilage school glue, the stuff the youngest kids use because it can be eaten without harm.

  9. TopsyTurvy (Teri)

    Maggie, gonna butt in and make a comment on something you said on Bex’ board, hoping you’ll see it here more quickly.

    Heaven knows I’m no HVAC person, but can I ask/suggest you get a second opinion on the hot water for your heat pump? The thing that concerns me is that it’s a fact of physics that hot water freezes more quickly than cold water does, and that worries me. I’d hate to see you freeze up your heat pump…

  10. Bex, I had seen that hairdo in many period films, so it was fun to see how it all came together. Vanity! Worse though, in my view, were the big skirts and puffy sleeves, I hate cumbersome clothing.

  11. Teri, the advice comes from our family HVAC guy, who would have to repair any damage, and does so for free, so I trust his judgement implicitly. He has never steered us wrong, and is the top tech where he works. He hadn’t seen it though, so his advice was full of “ifs”, which is where we can run into issues of communication.

    The thing was though, I couldn’t figure out what the “coils” were, which is what I was supposed to check, so I wasn’t keen to pour hot water out there until I figured that out. When I thought I had it figured out I headed out to the heat pump again, and decided that there wasn’t a problem with ice on the coils. I think I was correct, because the heat pump ran successfully all day yesterday.

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