31410. “They’re sitting on the floor in A Stitch in Time, surrounded on all sides by dresses of every imaginable color. Cora realizes as she glances around, her gaze flitting quickly from one wall to the next, that Etta has arranged them like the seasons: sparkling whites, grays, blacks for winter; shimmering greens and blues for spring; pinks and purples for summer; reds, oranges and yellows for autumn. Together they are breathtaking, almost too bright if stared at for too long, like falling through a rainbow lit by the sun.” ― Menna van Praag, The Dress Shop of Dreams
31409. “There were ceramic teapots in aubergine, mustard, and midnight blue (good for one, sweeter still when shared between two drinkers); and forty small, thin glasses with curved handles, set in gold- and silver-plated holders etched with arabesque swirls. Bahar gingerly lined the tea glasses up on the counter where the cappuccino machine had been stationed. She tucked the teapots into the counter’s glass-paneled belly, where they sat prettily next to twenty glass containers of loose-leaf teas, ranging from bergamot and hibiscus to oolong.” ― Marsha Mehran, Pomegranate Soup
31407. “I walk out into the hall and remember when Ma chose the paint. Mountain Sage out here, Irish Oatmeal in their bedroom, the master bathroom in Ice Blue Gloss. She gave me the samples from the paint store and I cut them out in little identical squares, playing the game of remembering which was which, knowing every color by its name. The carpets on the second floor are soft under my bare feet. The next room down is Amanda’s, a pale buttery yellow called Chardonnay on the walls, boxes of shoes still under the bed.” ― Jael McHenry, The Kitchen Daughter
31406. “Noa sleeps with the curtains open, allowing as much moonlight as possible to flood her bedroom, allowing her to see each and every picture on the walls, if only as a pale glimmer. It took Noa weeks to perfect the art display. Reproductions of Monet’s gardens at Giverny blanket one wall: thousands of violets- smudges of purples and mauves- and azaleas, poppies, and peonies, tulips and roses, water lilies in pastel pinks floating on serene lakes reflecting weeping willows and shimmers of sunshine. Turner’s sunsets adorn another: bright eyes of gold at the center of skies and seas of searing magenta or soft blue. The third wall is splashed with Jackson Pollocks: a hundred different colors streaked and splattered above Noa’s bed. The fourth wall is decorated by Rothko: blocks of blue and red and yellow blending and bleeding together. The ceiling is papered with the abstract shapes of Kandinsky: triangles, circles, and lines tumbling over one another in energetic acrobatics.” ― Menna van Praag, The Witches of Cambridge
31403. “The fruit alone inspired him. In the heat of summer there were mirabelles from Alsace: small and golden cherries, speckled with red. And Reine Claude from Moissac, sweet thin-skinned plums the color of lettuce touched with gold. In August, green hazelnuts and then green walnuts, delicate, milky and fresh. And of course, for just a moment in early fall, pêches de vigne, a rare subtle peach so remarkable that a shipment was often priced at a year’s wages. And right before winter, Chasselas de Moissac grapes: small, pearlescent, and so graceful that they grow in Baroque clusters, as if part of a Caravaggio still life.” ― N.M. Kelby, White Truffles in Winter
31402. “I placed the tubes of paint on the palette and selected a small canvas. I prepared the palette with an assortment of colors, then closed my eyes, remembering the way the moors had looked when I rode into town with Lord Livingston. He’d been so different on that drive into the village before he left for London. Had that been the side of him that Lady Anna had fallen in love with? I dipped my brush into the black paint and then mixed in some white until I’d created the right shade of gray, then touched the brush to the canvas. I loved the feeling of the paintbrush in my hand. He’d been kind to buy me the art supplies, but I remembered how he’d behaved in the dining room and at other times before that. ‘How could he be so cruel, so unfeeling?’ Once I’d painted the clouds, I moved on to the hills, mixing a sage green color for the grass and then dotting the foreground with a bit of lavender to simulate the heather. I stepped back from the canvas and frowned. It needed something else. But what? I looked out the window to the orchard. The Middlebury Pink. ‘Who took the page from Lady Anna’s book? Lord Livingston?’ I dabbed my brush into the brown paint and created the structure of the tree. Next I dotted the branches with its heart-shaped leaves and large, white, saucer-size blossoms with pink tips.” ― Sarah Jio, The Last Camellia
31401. “Nijinsky in ‘Le Spectre de la rose’ was like nothing I’d seen before. He danced a fifteen-minute solo and it passed like a dream. He was wearing a silk tricot, palest nude, onto which were pinned dozens of silk Bakst petals, pink and red and purple. The most exotic creature, so beautiful, like a shiny, graceful insect on the verge of flight. He leapt as if it cost him no effort, lingering in the air far longer than was possible, and seemed not to touch the stage between times. I believed that night that a man might fly, that anything was possible.” ― Kate Morton, The Lake House
31400. “Artists are the flowers of our world. The best ones are those that can stand out from the crowd and create their own concrete garden — to move us, inspire us, and makes us think hard. A flower with no smell to it is just something to look at. However, a flower that emits a beautiful fragrance is the one we want in our homes and on our walls. Your mission as an artist, is to become the best-smelling flower in the world, so that when the day finally comes when you are plucked from the ground, the world will cry for the loss of your mind-stimulating fragrance. Be different. Be original. Nobody will remember a specific flower in garden loaded with thousands of the same flower, but they will remember the one that managed to change its color to purple. Truth Is Crying, 2008” ― Suzy Kassem, Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem
31399. “George thrust into Alma’s hand a lithograph of a spotted ‘Catasetum.’ The orchid had been rendered so magnificently that it seemed to grow off the page. Its lips were spotted red against yellow, and appeared moist, like living flesh. Its leaves were lush and thick, and its bulbous roots looked as though one could shake actual soil off them. Before Alma could thoroughly take in the beauty, George handed her another stunning print- a ‘Peristeria barkeri,’ with its tumbling golden blossoms so fresh they nearly trembled. Whoever had tinted this lithograph had been a master of texture as well as color; the petals resembled unshorn velvet, and touches of albumen on their tips gave each blossom a hint of dew. Then George handed her another print, and Alma could not help but gasp. Whatever this orchid was, Alma had never seen it before. Its tiny pink lobes looked like something a fairy would don for a fancy dress ball.” ― Elizabeth Gilbert, The Signature of All Things
31391. “London was beginning to illuminate herself against the night. Electric lights sizzled and jagged in the main thoroughfares, gas-lamps in the side streets glimmered a canary gold or green. The sky was a crimson battlefield of spring, but London was not afraid. Her smoke mitigated the splendour, and the clouds down Oxford Street were a delicately painted ceiling, which adorned while it did not distract. She has never known the clear-cut armies of the purer air. Leonard hurried through her tinted wonders, very much part of the picture. His was a grey life, and to brighten it he had ruled off a few corners for romance.” ― E.M. Forster, Howards End
31388. “It’s like I’ve always had a painted musical sound track playing background to my life. I can almost hear colors and smell images when music is played. Mom loves classical. Big, booming Beethoven symphonies blast from her CD player all day long. Those pieces always seem to be bright blue as I listen, and they smell like fresh paint. Dad is partial to jazz, and every chance he gets, he winks at me, takes out Mom’s Mozart disc, then pops in a CD of Miles Davis or Woody Herman. Jazz to me sounds brown and tan, and it smells like wet dirt.” ― Sharon M. Draper, Out of My Mind
31386. “Hippogriffs!” Hagrid roared happily, waving a hand at them. “Beau’iful, aren’ they?” Harry could sort of see what Hagrid meant. Once you got over the first shock of seeing something that was half horse, half bird, you started to appreciate the hippogriffs’ gleaming coats, changing smoothly from feather to feather, each of them a different color: stormy gray, bronze, pinkish roan, gleaming chestnut, and inky black.” ― J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
31385. “Why do you paint, Akram?” I asked. “What—” “Close your eyes, Sebastian,” he said, stopping me. “Just for a minute, close them and tell me what you see.” I did as he asked and answered, “Nothing, just black.” He tilted my head a bit to the west. “Open them now and find the blessing of vision. This abundance, the explosion, the mixture of colors, the movement, life passing by… See the sun setting? What colors can you find in the sea? Surely there are blue and gray, but don’t you also see that darker gray, light green, even black? Look at the hues of the sun drowning in the sea, melting in oranges, reds, purples. Look at those trees over there. Look at the waves, at me, at your hands, the eyes of your friends. Now, must you still ask me why I paint?” Akram replied. He then left me and walked to the tip of the yacht to enjoy the sunset and the breeze. “Artists,” I mumbled to myself.” ― Ahmad Ardalan, The Art Collector of Le Marais
31383. “Minden egyes szóval, ami most sikerülten a pergamenre került, növekedett bátorsága, és vele együtt ügyessége is. Valóban remekül lehetett írni a tollakkal, és a titokzatos tinta hollófeketén és engedelmesen csurgott a vakítóan fehér pergamenre. Midőn ilyen szorgosan és feszült figyelemmel dolgozott, egyre otthonosabban érezte magát a magányos szobában, és teljesen beleélte magát a foglalatosságba, amelyet – úgy remélte – majd szerencsésen elvégez, amikor az óra hármat ütött, a levéltáros behívta a szomszéd szobába, a gondosan elkészített ebédhez.” ― E.T.A. Hoffmann, Az arany virágcserép – A homokember – Scuderi kisasszony
31381. “While we formed mochi cakes, the men pounded another batch of rice. When it was soft, they divided the rice dough until it turned nubby like tweed. They sprinkled the second blob with dried shrimp and banged it until it turned coral. Nori seaweed powder colored the third hunk forest green, while the fourth piece of mochi became yellow and pebbly with cooked corn kernels. For variation, the grandmother rolled several plain mochi in a tan talc of sweetened toasted soybean powder. She also stuffed several dumplings with crimson azuki bean fudge. Then she smeared a thick gob of azuki paste across a mochi puff, pushed in a candied chestnut, and pinched the dumpling shut. “For the American!” cried Mr. Omura, swiping his mother’s creation. I looked up and he handed it to me. It was tender and warm. All eyes turned to watch the American. “Oishii!” I uttered with a full mouth. And it was delicious. The soft stretchy rice dough had a mild savory chew that mingled with the candy-like sweetness of the bean paste and buttery chestnut.” ― Victoria Abbott Riccardi, Untangling My Chopsticks: A Culinary Sojourn in Kyoto tags: chestnut, colors, dough, fillings, flavors, mochi, rice, traditional0 likesLike
31380. “Several minutes later, Tomiko met me at the top of the stairs in her wedding kimono. She was totally transformed. Out of her blue jeans, loose shirt, and bulky sweater, she radiated femininity. The kimono elongated her torso and created a smooth cylinder from neck to toe, the hallmark of a beautiful Japanese figure. A striking navy obi with red, yellow, white, and turquoise chrysanthemums hugged her waist. A flirtatious cream collar peeked out from under the pale peach robe. The sleeves were just high enough to expose a sensual swatch of skin above her wrist. When she moved her arm, the inner fold revealed an erotic flash of scarlet and white silk.” ― Victoria Abbott Riccardi, Untangling My Chopsticks: A Culinary Sojourn in Kyoto
31377. “I beheld such a sight which I have never beheld before, and which no living person can have seen save in the delirium of fever or the inferno of opium. The building stood on a narrow point of land- or what was now a narrow point of land-fully three hundred feet above what must lately have been a seething vortex of mad waters. On either side of the house there fell a newly washed-out precipice of red earth, whilst ahead of me the hideous waves were still rolling in frightfully, eating away the land with ghastly monotony and deliberation. Out a mile or more there rose and feel menacing breakers of at least fifty feat in height, and on the far horizon ghoulish black clouds were resting and brooding like unwholesome vultures. The waves were dark and purplish, almost black, and clutched at the yielding red mud of the bank as if with uncouth, greedy hands. I could not but feel that some noxious marine mind had declared a war of extermination upon all the solid ground, perhaps abetted by the angry sky.” ― H.P. Lovecraft, The Crawling Chaos
31374. “People flocked like lemmings to the water’s edge all across Michigan’s vast coastline every pretty summer evening to watch the spectacular sunsets. They were marvelous spectacles, a fireworks display most nights- a kaleidoscope of color and light in the sky, white clouds turning cotton candy pink, Superman ice cream blue, and plum purple, the sun a giant fireball that seemed to melt in the water as it began to slink behind the wavy horizon. Sunsets are one of our simplest and most profound gifts, Sam remembered her grandma telling her years ago as they walked the shoreline looking for witches’ stones- the ones with holes in them- or pretty Petoskeys to make matching necklaces. They remind us that we were blessed to have enjoyed a perfect day, and they provide hope that tomorrow will be even better. It’s God’s way of saying good night with His own brand of fireworks.” ― Viola Shipman, The Recipe Box
31372. “Whoooa! Red! Green! Yellow! Brown! Purple! Even black! Look at all those bowls full of brilliantly colored batter!” She used strawberries, blueberries, matcha powder, cocoa powder, black sesame and other natural ingredients to dye those batters. They look like a glittering array of paints on an artist’s palette! “Now that all my yummy edible paints are ready… …it’s picture-drawing time!” “She twisted a sheet of parchment paper into a piping bag and is using it to draw all kinds of cute pictures!” “You’re kidding me! Look at them all! How did she get that fast?!” Not only that, most chefs do rough sketches first, but she’s doing it off the cuff! How much artistic talent and practice does she have?! “All these cutie-pies go into the oven for about three minutes. After that I’ll take them out and pour the brown sugar batter on top…” “It appears she’s making a roll cake if she’s pouring batter into that flat a pan.” “Aah, I see. It must be one of those patterned roll cakes you often see at Japanese bakeries. That seems like an unusually plain choice, considering the fanciful tarts she made earlier.” “The decorations just have to be super-cute, too.” “OOOH! She’s candy sculpting!” “So pretty and shiny!” That technique she’s using- that’s Sucre Tiré (Pulled Sugar)! Of all the candy-sculpting arts, Sucre Tiré gives the candy a glossy, nearly glass-like luster… but keeping the candy at just the right temperature so that it remains malleable while stretching it to a uniform thickness is incredibly difficult! Every step is both delicate and exceptionally difficult, yet she makes each one look easy! She flows from one cutest technique to the next, giving each an adorable flair! Just like she insisted her apple tarts had to be served in a pretty and fantastical manner… … she’s even including cutesy performances in the preparation of this dish!” ― Yuto Tsukuda, 食戟のソーマ 29 [Shokugeki no Souma 29]
26390. “If you initialed one dollar per second, you would make $1,000 every seventeen minutes. After 12 days of nonstop effort you would acquire your first $1 million. Thus, it would take you 120 days to accumulate $10 million and 1,200 days— something over three years—to reach $100 million. After 31.7 years you would become a billionaire, and after almost a thousand years you would be as wealthy as Bill Gates. But not until after 31,709.8 years would you count your trillionth dollar (and even then you would be less than one-fourth of the way through the pile of money representing America’s national debt). That is what $1 trillion is.” ― Bill Bryson, I’m a Stranger Here Myself: Notes on Returning to America After 20 Years Away
26387. “It is still a fairly astounding notion to consider that atoms are mostly empty space, and that the solidity we experience all around us is an illusion. When two objects come together in the real world – billiard balls are most often used for illustration – they don’t actually strike each other. ‘Rather,’ as Timothy Ferris explains, ‘the negatively charged fields of the two balls repel each other … [W]ere it not for their electrical charges they could, like galaxies, pass right through each other unscathed26.’ When you sit in a chair, you are not actually sitting there, but levitating above it at a height of one angstrom (a hundred millionth of a centimetre), your electrons and its electrons implacably opposed to any closer intimacy.” ― Bill Bryson, A Short History of Nearly Everything
26385. “I hate to sound like an old man, but why are these people famous? What qualities do they possess that endear them to the wider world? We may at once eliminate talent, intelligence, attractiveness, and charm from the equation, so what does that leave? Dainty feet? Fresh, minty breath? I am at a loss to say. Anatomically, many of them don’t even seem quite human. Many have names that suggest they have reached us from a distant galaxy: Ri-Ri, Tulisa, Naya, Jai, K-Pez, Chlamydia, Mo-Ron. (I may be imagining some of these.) As I read the magazine, I kept hearing a voice in my head, like the voice from a 1950s B-movie trailer, saying: “They came from Planet Imbecile!” ― Bill Bryson, The Road to Little Dribbling: More Notes from a Small Island
26384. “Every atom you possess has almost certainly passed through several stars and been part of millions of organisms on its way to becoming you. We are each so atomically numerous and so vigorously recycled at death that a significant number of our atoms—up to a billion for each of us, it has been suggested—probably once belonged to Shakespeare. A billion more each came from Buddha and Genghis Khan and Beethoven, and any other historical figure you care to name. (The personages have to be historical, apparently, as it takes the atoms some decades to become thoroughly redistributed; however much you may wish it, you are not yet one with Elvis Presley.) So we are all reincarnations—though short-lived ones. When we die our atoms will disassemble and move off to find new uses elsewhere—as part of a leaf or other human being or drop of dew. Atoms, however, go on practically forever.” ― Bill Bryson, A Short History of Nearly Everything
26380. “I soon learned that everyone in Paris was like that. You would go into a bakery and be greeted by some vast sluglike creature with a look that told you you would never be friends. In halting French you would ask for a small loaf of bread. The woman would give you a long, cold stare and then put a dead beaver on the counter. “No, no,” you would say, hands aflutter, “not a dead beaver. A loaf of bread.” The sluglike creature would stare at you in patent disbelief, then turn to the other customers and address them in French at much too high a speed for you to follow, but the drift of which clearly was that this person here, this American tourist, had come in and asked for a dead beaver and she had given him a dead beaver and now he was saying that he didn’t want a dead beaver at all, he wanted a loaf of bread. The other customers would look at you as if you had just tried to fart in their handbags, and you would have no choice but to slink away and console yourself with the thought that in another four days you would be in Brussels and probably able to eat again.” ― Bill Bryson, Neither Here Nor There: Travels in Europe
26379. “It would be useful (I wasn’t quite sure in what way, but I was sure nonetheless) to learn to fend for myself in the wilderness. When guys in camouflage pants and hunting hats sat around in the Four Aces Diner talking about fearsome things done out-of-doors, I would no longer have to feel like such a cupcake. I wanted a little of that swagger that comes with being able to gaze at a far horizon through eyes of chipped granite and say with a slow, manly sniff, “Yeah, I’ve shit in the woods.” ― Bill Bryson, A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail
26378. “More than nine million people a year come to the Smokies, many of them to picnic. So bears have learned to associate people with food. Indeed, to them people are overweight creatures in baseball caps who spread lots and lots of food out on picnic tables and then shriek a little and waddle off to get their video cameras when old Mr. Bear comes along and climbs onto the table and starts devouring their potato salad and chocolate cake. Since the bear doesn’t mind being filmed and indeed seems indifferent to his audience, pretty generally some fool will come up to it and try to stroke it or feed it a cupcake or something. There is one recorded instance of a woman smearing honey on her toddler’s fingers so that the bear would lick it off for the video camera. Failing to understand this, the bear ate the baby’s hand.” ― Bill Bryson, A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail
26376. “IN 1953, STANLEY Miller, a graduate student at the University of Chicago, took two flasks—one containing a little water to represent a primeval ocean, the other holding a mixture of methane, ammonia, and hydrogen sulphide gases to represent Earth’s early atmosphere—connected them with rubber tubes, and introduced some electrical sparks as a stand-in for lightning. After a few days, the water in the flasks had turned green and yellow in a hearty broth of amino acids, fatty acids, sugars, and other organic compounds. “If God didn’t do it this way,” observed Miller’s delighted supervisor, the Nobel laureate Harold Urey, “He missed a good bet.” ― Bill Bryson, A Short History of Nearly Everything
26375. “mass and energy have an equivalence. They are two forms of the same thing: energy is liberated matter; matter is energy waiting to happen. Since c2 (the speed of light times itself) is a truly enormous number, what the equation is saying is that there is a huge amount—a really huge amount—of energy bound up in every material thing.4 You may not feel outstandingly robust, but if you are an average-sized adult you will contain within your modest frame no less than 7 × 1018 joules of potential energy—enough to explode with the force of thirty very large hydrogen bombs, assuming you knew how to liberate it and really wished to make a point.” ― Bill Bryson, A Short History of Nearly Everything
26374. “the books tell you that if the grizzly comes for you, on no account should you run. This is the sort of advice you get from someone who is sitting at a keyboard when he gives it. Take it from me, if you are in an open space with no weapons and a grizzly comes for you, run. You may as well. If nothing else, it will give you something to do with the last seven seconds of your life. However, when the grizzly overtakes” ― Bill Bryson, A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail
26372. “What a wonderful world that was, and how remote it seems now. It is a challenge to believe that there was ever a time that airline food was exciting, when stewardesses were happy to see you, when flying was such an occasion that you wore your finest clothes. I grew up in a world in which everything was like that: shopping malls, TV dinners, TV itself, supermarkets, freeways, air conditioning, drive-in movies, 3D movies, transistor radios, backyard barbecues, air travel as a commonplace—all were brand-new and marvelously exciting. It is amazing we didn’t choke to death on all the novelty and wonder in our lives. I remember once my father brought home a device that you plugged in and, with an enormous amount of noise and energy, it turned ice cubes into shaved ice, and we got excited about that. We were idiots really, but awfully happy, too. —” ― Bill Bryson, The Road to Little Dribbling: More Notes from a Small Island
26365. “Of course, you’ll have to fly to the refugee camp at Dadaab,” Will observed thoughtfully at one point. He glanced at me. “To avoid the bandits,” he explained. Dan and Nick nodded gravely. “I beg your pardon?” I said, taking a sudden interest. “It’s bandit country all round there,” Will said. “Where?” I asked, peering at the map for the first time. “Oh, just there,” Will said, waving a hand vaguely across most of east Africa. “But you’ll be fine in a plane.” “They only rarely shoot at planes,” Nick explained.” ― Bill Bryson, Bill Bryson’s African Diary