Archive for the ‘folklore’ Category

2013 Smithsonian Folklife Festival

June 25, 2013

2013 Smithsonian Folklife Festival

The Smithsonian Folklife Festival is back on the National Mall in Washington DC, June 26th to June 30th and July 3rd to July 7th. This year’s free Festival features thematic presentations on Hungarian heritage, endangered languages and cultural heritage, and African American personal adornment.

The full daytime schedule is here. Evening concerts include Roma music from Hungary and Transylvania, Hawaiian music and dance, Dong choral music from Guizhou Province in China, Kalmyk and Tuvan music from Russia, and more (schedule here). And bring the kiddies.

See you on the line at the food concessions.

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Shortlink: http://wp.me/p6sb6-gSa

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Groundhog Day

February 2, 2013

Groundhog Day

It’s February 2nd, time to monitor Marmota monax and dream of winter’s end. Whether or not you believe in woodchuck weathermen, one thing is certain: you can’t have groundhogs if you want a backyard full of fresh garden veggies.

Groundhogs (aka woodchucks, whistlepigs, and marmots) are insecto-vegetarians and confirmed locavores. If you plan to plant this spring, harvest those hairy beasts now. Celebrate Groundhog Day with critter cuisine.

Serving suggestions:

Woodchuck au Vin

Canadian Fried Woodchuck

Groundhog Pie

Woodchuck Recipes from Michigan (Oriental Groundhog,Waco Groundhog in Sour Cream,Woodchuck Stew, Woodchuck Meat Loaf)

More groundhog lore and recipes here and here.

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Smithsonian Folklife Festival

June 26, 2012

Smithsonian Folklife Festival
The Smithsonian Folklife Festival is back on the National Mall in Washington DC, June 27th to July 1st and July 4th to July 8th. This year’s free Festival features thematic presentations on Land Grant Universities, the Aids Quilt, and DC East of the River.

The full daytime schedule is here. Evening concerts include funk, steel drums, Azerbaijani music, mariachis, jazz, and more.

See you on the line at the food concessions.

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Shortlink: http://wp.me/p6sb6-dpF

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length

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Wardrobe Adjustment

May 28, 2012

Wardrobe Adjustment
Memorial Day. It’s that special time when America pauses a moment to look for its white shoes and straw hats.

This is the official Unofficial Start of Summer.

Note: In Baltimore, “Straw Hat Day” is May 15th. Farther south, other rules apply.

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Short link: http://wp.me/p6sb6-dcq

Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length

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Seis de Mayo

May 6, 2012

Seis de Mayo
Last night, the 5th of May, millions of people commemorated the Mexican victory at the Battle of Puebla (1862) with volleys of shots — of tequila — bravura barrages of beer, and murderous margaritas. Unsurprisingly, this morning finds heads held hostage and stomachs seared from nacho napalm. Today’s Spanish vocabulary lesson: crudo means ” hangover.”

If you celebrated Cinco de Mayo with cerveza, celebrate Seis de Mayo this morning with el desayuno de los campeones, the Breakfast of Champions. The traditional Mexican hangover cure is menudo tripe soup or stew.

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Dragons

January 23, 2012

Dragons

Happy New Year (新年快乐). This Lunar New Year is the Year of the Dragon in much of Asia. In China, where the dragon is considered a national symbol, this year is considered especially auspicious, and many couples will attempt to have lucky children in the next twelve months. To Chinese moms, that’s not an unmixed blessing.

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Watch Night

January 1, 2012

'Watch Night: Waiting for the Hour' ('Watch Meeting — Dec. 31st, 1862'), by William Tolman Carlton

Many Washingtonians spent late Saturday night and early Sunday morning at African American churches observing Watch Night, a New Year’s Eve celebration little known outside of the Black community, though a painting of such a prayer meeting by New England artist William Tolman Carlton (above) hangs in the White House.

In 19th century England and America the secular celebration of New Year’s Eve was called “Watch Night” – Winslow Homer’s illustration in the January 5, 1861 Harper’s entitled “The Georgia Delegation in Congress Seeing the Old Year Out “ is subtitled “Watch Night.” The New Year’s Eve religious services called Watch Night developed in the Methodist Church in Britain as an occasion for the Covenant Prayer, through which believers re-commit themselves to God.

Thus it may already have been customary for Black Methodists and Baptists to celebrate Watch Night, but December 31, 1862 had a momentous worldly significance: the Emancipation Proclamation would go into effect at midnight. This is why the celebration continues in African American churches today, striking a more joyous note than prior penitential Watch Nights.

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Happy New Year and Lucky Legumes

December 31, 2011

Happy New Year and Lucky Legumes

Happy New Year to you and yours from NotionsCapital.com

Remember: If you must eat black-eyed peas and drive, roll down the windows.

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Short Link: http://wp.me/p6sb6-c3l

Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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Best New Year’s Resolutions Ever

December 31, 2011

Best New Year’s Resolutions Ever

If asked about your New Year’s Resolutions for 2012, the best response is “I am far from perfect, but self-criticism sessions went out with Chairman Mao. So Happy New Year, and let’s have another drink.”

If friends and family insist you make resolutions, perhaps at gunpoint, you may benefit from this list of the Top 10 Best New Year’s Resolutions Ever:

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It’s September.

September 6, 2011

It's September.

Now that September is upon us, remember:

1. The NFL season starts Thursday.

2. Air out woolens.

3. Buy leaf bags.

4. Don’t wear white shoes.

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