Despite Rachel Hope Cleves’ early assertion to the contrary, her book, Charity and Sylvia is hardly an “unremarkable” history. Certainly, elements of the work’s focus—namely its look at romantic and familial relationships, gender expectations, and domesticity—are rather ordinary and speak to a common 18th/19th century New England experience. But one would be mistaken to discount the extraordinariness of the title characters’ abilities to adapt these otherwise typical components of life to their own unique circumstances. Cleves, initial modesty aside, knows this well and so her study of Charity and Sylvia, a same-sex married couple in 19th century New England, reads as nothing less than profound and worthy of the extended consideration given it.
Lately, I’ve been watching lots of Youtube reruns of The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson. Despite my general disbelief about the fact that I’m actually watching repeats of years old late night talk shows (something I don’t even do now), I’m finding it rather fun to watch the episodes in full and follow along in some sort of sequential order (even if I jump around in spurts). I suppose of all the entertainment produced for television nothing is so intrinsically ephemeral as the nightly talk shows as they center their monologues around topical events and their interviews around then current movie/tv/music releases. Nevertheless watching years later adds an element of fun and it doesn’t hurt that Craig is hilarious. Above is a funny clip of noteworthiness from my recent watching; it originally aired November 11, 2012. In it, Craig works with Alton Brown to make some candy…naturally, things don’t quite go to plan.