Not the renaissance of Leonardo and Michelangelo and the rebirth of interest in ancient art. No, what's happening here, right now, is another kind of renaissance - the rebirth of interest in food farming.
Did you know there's a thread tying your pants to an old Italian theatre tradition, a thread your pants share with the Barber of Seville, Marriage of Figaro, slapstick comedy, Punch and Judy, and Shakespeare?
Recently, the words heritage and museum have been springing up in the local papers as insistently as the dandelions in my lawn.
When I say granola and muesli, what pops into your mind?
The waitress waited while I studied the menu. "A hamburger, please, and coffee," I said.
Over the next few weeks, the resignation of Pope Benedict and the election of his successor will be a recur-rent topic in the news worldwide.
On Feb. 14, more than 12 saints line up for their feastday.
Authors say that when they're writing a story, the characters often take on a life of their own.
Re: "Keeping local history alive," Community, Jan. 11.
Last summer I heard a lecture at the University of B.C. about the importance of preserving family records and the increasing difficulty of doing so, since most informal records are now created electronically and quickly deleted.
Good storytelling depends on tension to captivate the audience. This was as true at the beginning of time as it is today. Ancient legends, like modern tales, rely on the play of conflicting elements to keep the storyline taut.
A friend's claim that good hosts make bad guests, and vice versa, left me feeling skeptical.
People buying and selling old art are concerned about provenance - they need to know where the work of art comes from, who previously owned it.
Last month, when there was an outcry about the lack of public sanitary facilities at Richmond's Canada Line stations, the local papers reported on it, using the words washroom, toilet, loo and restroom, which they chose from among a multitude of terms, nearly all of them oblique references.
From the air, Richmond's farm fields appear covered with orange polka-dots during this season. Close up, the polka dots become pumpkins, soon to be pressed into service as jack-o'-lanterns - tops sliced off, seeds scooped out and faces carved into monstrous leers, all to delight the children at Halloween.
Years ago, after a delicious pub lunch in London, a friend declared that I was a good trencherman (in those days the suffix man was used for both sexes).
Nowadays, many supermarkets offer customers a range of unpackaged foodstuffs in what they call the bulk food section. That name, however, is a misnomer because bulk - from the Old Icelandic "bulki," meaning cargo, heap, large quantity - properly identifies the kind of retailing done by a store like Costco, where large quantities are purchased at a discount.
Aunt Sara and I were plucking blueberries when she confessed that her favourite columns were those in which I mention food.
When I learned to speak English as a child, my main bugbear was pronunciation, not vocabulary. When I moved to Florence and learned Italian, my biggest problem was coming out with the right word at the right time.