A one-minute audio linguistics lesson: how New Orleanians pronounce “Chartres.”

Lazy Sunday: Loving Bill Cunningham

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Dear Kay, I was so, so sad to learn of the death of Bill Cunningham, the legendary photographer of street style in New York. But soon, after spending time reading about the deep love so many people had for him, I realized that the proper emotion when thinking about Bill Cunningham is JOY. What joy he brought to his work! Even in his final report for the New York Times, he is delighted and amused by what he sees. “The fashion show is on...

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A Ramble in the Woods

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Dear Kay, Oh, come on, the news is grim, so let’s leave it all behind and go for a walk in the Tennessee countryside. I tend to walk early in the morning, when there’s still a breeze. The moss is so much better than the mushrooms this year. I have not seen a single mushroom. The frog pond is low, too. Not far from my cottage is a ruin of a stone house. There are people around who could tell me the story of this place, but I...

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Snippets: What Makes a Beach Read?


Dear Kay, What Makes a Beach Read is a juicy list of 44 books to read with sand under your feet or a hammock under your backside. The curator here is the staff of Nashville’s sublime Parnassus Books. I’m on the prowl for new audiobooks, so this arrives just in time. Really Cool Stitching Heard a great talk last night by Ilze Aviks, an artist teaching at Shakerag Workshops this week. She works like a fiend, creating five-foot-high...

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Kay Is Away; Ann Soldiers (Valiantly) On


Dear Kay, Straight up, I am not comfortable writing on your day.  It just feels wrong.  I don’t have a dog photo.  I don’t know any good British teledramas (except Broadchurch, which has only two seasons to watch, not 30 like Eastenders).  I don’t have a four-acre garter stitch blanket on the go.  Despite the fact that people regularly call me Kay and you Ann, I have to face into the fact that we are separate people, for...

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Indigo Wonderland


Dear Kay, Through some minor miracle,  last night I found myself sitting in the crowd at the fabled Shakerag Workshops in Sewanee, Tennessee. The speaker was a Nigerian fabric artist who now lives in Santa Fe. This is Gasali Adeyamo. He is teaching batik, indigo dyeing, and the general concept of being awesome. His mission of preserving and celebrating age-old Nigerian dyeing traditions seems to be going pretty well. His classroom is...

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