Saturday, May 3, 2008


Lisa has asked me to turn to page 123 of my current reading, count 5 sentences, then post the following 3:

‘I can’t. I can’t promise.’

‘Say “yes”, Rosemary.’

Who’d have thought that Orwell, taken in this context, could sound so bodice-ripping?

And Wendy, those little sprouts up there are beetroot. Yours is a delicious, brilliant idea.

Join in, if you like.


Vicki said...

Oh gosh, my 123 is so not bodice-ripping. From Consider the Eel, by Richard Schweid:

"Before 1900, eels were sent to the Fulton Fish Market daily on boats under sail, and then on motorized vessels. The Hudson River's eels have long been prized for their rich flavor. In his Letters from an American Farmer, published in 1782, J. Hector St. John Crevecoeur, a French settler in the Hudson Valley, wrote about the preparations for winter: 'Each family smokes fully one half of the meat, fish, eels; in short everything we intend to preserve.'"'s actually a pretty good read.

Anonymous said...

I love the concept! I have been looking at P123 of the couple of books on my table at the moment, and it is quite good how it can strike your imagination and make you want to read more. I even love the eels quote from vicki.

BTW, a little present for you in my latest post.

kathryn said...

"The answering machine was on: the office was closed until Monday. In the bottom corner of the card was a mobile number. I dialled it." Not, as you might think a noir-esque crime story, instead it's from Helen Garner's new one - The Spare Room.

And Lucy - beetroot sprouts, gorgeous, gorgeous idea. I shall be organising some of those for myself this week.

Christina said...

Baby beet greens are my favorite salad greens. I love their salty, crunchy goodness.

Let's see, what book is closest at hand right now? Gerald Durrell's Amateur Naturalist. The assigned line reads, "From a low perch the wood thrush sings its slow paced bell-like melody, and in the canopy the harsher song of the brilliant scarlet tanager is heard."

My parents gave me this book when I was in junior high. I think I memorized it before I was 15. Later, in college, when I received an A+ in my Environmental Geography class and my professor called me in to her office to congratulate me as the only student to whom she had ever awarded such a grade, she asked how I had become so successful in her class. I answered her honestly: I already knew the information as I had read it in this book. I'm quite certain my answer caught her off guard.

Thanks for reminding me about this book. I haven't opened it for a long time.

Anonymous said...

I came here via Vegeyum...Your blog is lovely! Congrat. on your award and I'll drop by again.

Simona said...

I love those baby leaves!

Lisa said...

Beetroot sprouts? Oh, what a wonderful idea.

Thanks for playing along Lucy. I've not read that title, but I did reread 1984 a short while back. Would you believe it was my "sick" book - I was off from work for a few days with a cold and that was my choice of literature.

Lucy said...

Hello Vicki - I'm thrilled that you've joined in! The book sounds fabulous - another to add to my ever-growing list. I'm ashamed to say that I know very little of American History. Single subject books can present a myriad of tangents worth following, too. Wonderful!

Thank you Vegeyum, very much! I am, of course very honoured. Shall pass it on in due course. It's a fun excercise, the '123' thing.

Kathryn, how is it? I've heard good things so far. Love the noir-esque excerpt - glad you played along. Somehow I knew you'd like those particular sprouts...

Christina, Gerald Durrell! When we were in Italy, Siena in fact, a few years ago I realised I'd not brought enough reading material. I found the English Language bookshop and bought a copy of My Family and Other Animals. I never wanted it to end. I am going to find The Amateur Naturalist and immerse myself in it as soon as possible! Time to reopen those pages, love.

Thank you My French Kitchen - you are a very deserving recipient, too!

Sweet, aren't they Simona? (They tasted sweet, too)

Lisa, I can believe that 1984 would be ideal 'sick day' reading. He's a perfect writer with passionate interest in his subject. If you can handle it (and I think you can), Down and Out In Paris and London is brilliantly depressing. I found it rather hilarious that, in and amongst talk about pre-WWII socialism and utter, utter poverty, he could sound so light-weight!

Ricki said...

Only you could offer the three shortest sentences in the entire English canon and make them sound good! (I, on the other hand, chose a passage that rambles on quite a bit. . .sort reflects my own writing style, hmmn?).

Your sprouts do look beautiful! I bet they'll taste wonderful, too.

Lucy said...

Ricki, sprouts are brilliant. And so damn easy am nearly kicking self that the idea never came to me...your 123 was great - never heard of either author or book. Going to see if I can track them both down.

Lisa said...

"Brilliantly depressing"? Recommendation noted Lucy. It has languished away for too long on my shelf.

Susan said...

Aspidistra...first time I ever read anything with aspidistra in its title was a novella by H.E. Bates. Even though I know it's got a reputation for being stodgy, it sounds as voluptuous as Orwell's handful of words. Lovely.

kathryn said...

Lucy - new Helen Garner is very good. The main character is an angry, angry woman and it's so grounded in the here and now I wonder how much of a fiction it is. I think it's the first Helen Garner book I've picked up, although I do read her regular columns in The Monthly.

I'm half way through the big Australian new releases trifecta. Have finished Peter Carey's new one, am now on The Spare Room and next it's Tim Winton's Breath.

Love your sprouts - I'll be planting some of my own this weekend.

Rosa said...

Fun idea. I've joined in, on my blog!