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My mother had very elaborate Christmas cookies that she made with us kids: we made the recipe for sand tarts (a flat, roll-out cookie suitable for cookie cutters) from The Joy of Cooking, then iced the with almond-flavored white icing, then painted on them with very fine paint brushes and food coloring. (Some examples.) I have my own cookie cutters, but earlier this year my dad wanted to clear out the old ones we had as kids. I got the angel.

The great thing about cookies made with this cookie cutter is that because the connecting bits (neck, joint of the wings) and arms are so thin, often they get moved this way or that when you're moving the cookie dough from the counter to the cooking sheet. So the head will tip back (gazing heavenward) or forward (deep in prayer) or the wings will flex outward or move toward the body. If the dough gets too warm, then the angel can get elongated in the transfer to the cooking sheet, or shortened. It makes for a various collection. I'll try to post some.

Center versus Periphery
It's fun to think about which categories comprise the Bad Guys in tales. For example, in dystopian fiction, usually the State is Bad and the Insurgents are Good, though sometimes (as in The Hunger Games) all groups end up being Bad (which brings up a more fundamental Good versus Bad dynamic in Western fiction: that the Individual is Good and the State/Society is Bad--unless we're talking the horror genre or certain sorts of cop or detective fiction, in which case the State/Society is Good and the Individual may represent Eldritch or Some Other Sort of Bad. (Yes, I'm enjoying capitalizing things today.)

So I was thinking about the Center and the Periphery, specifically about the national government versus local governments, and I was thinking about cop shows. I was thinking about how they quite tidily feature both sides in both roles. In ones favoring the Center, the heroes are from the FBI or other national agency, and they're brought in to deal with a difficult case that the corrupt, ignorant, and inept locals don't have the wherewithal to deal with. In ones favoring the Periphery, the local force must manage to solve the case despite the interference of the arrogant, high-handed feds, who often have an endgame that's at odds with the local need for justice or solution of the case.

Helpful Pamphlet
Saw this on a rock. Someone left it out as a helpful message, maybe? But then days later I saw it had fallen off the rock and was rain soaked. Not all messages reach an audience that can receive them.

Okay, to work I go. I have a big job I need to finish by the end of the day tomorrow.


( 30 comments — Leave a comment )
Dec. 21st, 2015 01:29 pm (UTC)
I love your cookie cutter. I'd love to see your angel cookies. :)

Good luck with your big job!

And Happy Holidays!
Dec. 21st, 2015 01:40 pm (UTC)
Thank you! I'll need the luck :-P

And happy, joyful, merry holidays for you and yours as well! (Hopefully we'll be in touch in the next few days, in any case...)
Dec. 21st, 2015 01:38 pm (UTC)
Individualized cookies! I would have been enchanted as a kid, and would have made up stories about them before they got eaten up!
Dec. 21st, 2015 01:39 pm (UTC)
All the more so because you would have had a chance to paint them--give them different features, costumes... yes, wow: that would make a great present, too--angel with a story attached.
(no subject) - sartorias - Dec. 21st, 2015 01:53 pm (UTC) - Expand
Dec. 21st, 2015 01:43 pm (UTC)
Please do post photos. I was remarking the same thing about the different attitudes conveyed by our animal-shaped cookies depending on how they are stretched during moving. :D

(I don't know if you linked to some examples, but the link didn't work for me)
Dec. 21st, 2015 01:53 pm (UTC)
Oh, maybe I didn't put in the link--let me try again. (The link won't include pictures of the angel cookies yet as I didn't have the cookie cutter until recently.)
(no subject) - asakiyume - Dec. 21st, 2015 01:56 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - mnfaure - Dec. 21st, 2015 06:20 pm (UTC) - Expand
Dec. 21st, 2015 02:51 pm (UTC)
Ooooh, I remember that cookie post with all the painted cookies. So beautiful! If you use the angel cutter, will you post pictures of those cookies too?
Dec. 21st, 2015 03:16 pm (UTC)
I definitely will.
Dec. 21st, 2015 03:32 pm (UTC)
I grew up with just that angel cutter-- but we did not relish the varying expressions of angel. OTOH, we more typically had angels broken at the thin bits than we had gesturing ones.

I really like your reflections on Center and Periphery-- surely that lens could profitably be used for American literature in general. Ah, Huckleberry Finn....
Dec. 21st, 2015 04:23 pm (UTC)
Definitely could be used profitable for Am. Lit, I'm sure. Tangentially, Little Springtime had an interesting post on Twitter: she said that in Mulan Disney took a traditional tale about filial piety and turned it into a story about individual fulfillment. Interesting how a culture imprints itself on material. Yes, it's a Chinese story, but given an American treatment.

How cool that you had the same cookie cutter! I was wondering if anyone else would have had it.
(no subject) - amaebi - Dec. 21st, 2015 05:33 pm (UTC) - Expand
Dec. 21st, 2015 04:20 pm (UTC)
Hm. Center v. Periphery is a thing that deserves thought. Lots of thought.

Good luck on your working things!
Dec. 21st, 2015 04:21 pm (UTC)
If you think thinky thoughts on it and post, I'll be all ears.
Dec. 22nd, 2015 02:03 am (UTC)
How lovely! your painted cookies! a wonderful tradition to have grown up with. :)
Dec. 23rd, 2015 05:15 pm (UTC)
I missed responding to this! I was sure I had.

It is indeed a great tradition to have grown up with <3
Dec. 23rd, 2015 12:12 am (UTC)
Mom has THAT cookie cutter. I used to play with it and others when I was little.
Dec. 23rd, 2015 02:35 pm (UTC)
Yay, another cookie-cutter sister! It's a good one, isn't it? I've looked around for an angel that's equally nice, but never found one.

What were your other cookie cutters? We had a Christmas tree, a star, and a bell.
Dec. 23rd, 2015 10:38 am (UTC)
Chun Woo and I should be making cookies to decorate, today or tomorrow. Please wish us well.
Dec. 23rd, 2015 02:13 pm (UTC)
I do wish you well! My own is going very slowly.
(no subject) - amaebi - Dec. 23rd, 2015 02:36 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - asakiyume - Dec. 23rd, 2015 03:53 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - amaebi - Dec. 23rd, 2015 04:45 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - asakiyume - Dec. 23rd, 2015 05:14 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - amaebi - Dec. 23rd, 2015 05:37 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - amaebi - Dec. 23rd, 2015 02:37 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - asakiyume - Dec. 23rd, 2015 03:53 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - amaebi - Dec. 23rd, 2015 04:46 pm (UTC) - Expand
( 30 comments — Leave a comment )

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