Back on Dorothy’s birthday, I spent the day sharing quotations of hers on Facebook. They came from her fiction, her non-fiction, and, in at least one instance, from her letters. Among these choice bits was the beginning of “The Abominable History of the Man with Copper Fingers” – better known here as her description of the Egotists’ Club:
The Egotists’ Club is one of the most genial places in London. It is a place to which you may go when you want to tell that odd dream you had last night, or to announce what a good dentist you have discovered. You can write letters there if you like, and have the temperament of a Jane Austen, for there is no silence room, and it would be a breach of club manners to appear busy or absorbed when another member addresses you.
Somehow, the idea of announcing one’s dentist, of all things, captured my imagination the most.
In the spirit of sharing one’s humblest joys, one’s most quotidian triumphs, one’s practical delights…here are my joys of late:
– Yesterday I bought a MacBook Pro. Not without trepidation, mind, as I have always been a PC user. But after my beloved Samsung fried, and my far-less-beloved Asus came to have an inoperable wireless card and tracked poorly…well, I basically went without a home computer for a year, using my smartphone instead, and growing steadily more frustrated by my lack of keyboard. The new model glows with promise: the promise that updates will not overwhelm me, that I need not pay a subscription to store my own documents, that I might go forth to join others in sub-creation.
– Not unrelatedly, having obtained the equipment to do it, I have started learning about the nuts and bolts of coding in HTML. My programming brother recommended this course of action to me, and it is perhaps the closest a Muggle gets to reading a book of spells: when you assemble the necessary elements (be they ever so boilerplate) and press “Run,” behold! These curious ciphers and characters LIVE! If you did it properly, anyway.
– I have been getting so much delight from the Ann Arbor District Library Summer Game. But that’s a whole other blog post, it turns out!
– The people around me have reminded me of delightful things. My flatmate reminded me of how delightful Brideshead Revisited is, by preparing a picnic for us to eat on the solstice while reading excerpts of “Et in Arcadia Ego.” Emily reminded me about that most adorable composition tool, Written? Kitten! Katherine and Ike, friends from Hillsdale that I hadn’t seen since 2012, drove through the UP before meeting me in Lansing for lunch and a good few hours of catching-up.
There have been other delights this summer – volunteer dill, stars-and-stripes pie for Independence Day, reading Gaudy Night aloud, brunch at Aventura, the 20th anniversary of Harry Potter coming out, revisiting The Great British Bakeoff, and watching The Tempest in the Arboretum.
Truly, these be joyful days!