Pimple post

I have a new post up at The Recipes Project titled “Mrs. Corlyon’s Pimple Cream: A Toxic Topical.”

I’m linking to it below, but first a preface: Turning 40 sucks. Within six months of my big 4-0, I developed a case of acid-reflux bad enough to land me in the emergency room (I called it my fake heart attack) and a nasty reappearance of plantar fasciitis that had me rolling frozen water bottles under my feet. But neither of those was as sucky as the newly developed rosacea. Within a week, I once again had the self-confidence of my pizza-faced younger self, examining my chin and nose in the mirror for new eruptions.* Only this time it HURT!

Who knows if I would have been desperate enough to try Mrs. Corlyon’s recipe for “red face and pimples.” I’m just really grateful I have my FDA-approved topical ointment….

*(Okay, maybe more self-confidence because I doubt my 16-year-old self would have written about her pimples so publicly. Or maybe it’s just another case of my having zero gravitas?)


Mrs. Corlyon’s Pimple Cream: A Toxic Topical

Reading an early recipe book can be an emotional roller coaster. There’s disgust (“’Snail water’? With real snails? Eww”), delight (“’A pudding of pippins’? That’s like something out of The Hobbit!”), and dismay (“NO! Do not drink the cordial of horse dung! Don’t do it!”).

Read more…


Today’s Libraries: Something for Everyone (But Maybe Not A Swimming Pool)

In 2007, all of the libraries in my county were closed due to lack of funding, leaving 82,000 people without access to any library services whatsoever.

It sucked. A lot. For so, so many reasons.

Since then, I’ve been a volunteer for Josephine Community Libraries, a nonprofit that reopened the libraries when the county government refused to do so. A group of us have also formed Keep Our Libraries Open, working to pass a publicly funded library district in Josephine County.

Anyway, that’s the background to this piece I wrote for Keep Our Libraries Open.

Back in 2009, when JCLI finally reopened the library, we volunteers worried we were in over our heads. After 18 months of working together, we sure knew how to fundraise, but we didn’t know yet know how to run a library. One thing was a given, though: this library would reflect our community’s needs. So we set out a suggestion box.

The ideas we got were pretty much what we expected: materials requests, questions about expanded hours, new program proposals.

We didn’t expect this: