I started my holiday cards today, and have concluded two things:

My handwriting is definitely going downhill, probably because I hardly ever do any except to sign my name. I did about 7 cards, and this may be the most I’ve written in months without a keyboard.

Second, I’m not sending a card to anyone I never hear from any more. I don’t mean people who don’t send me cards – lots of people don’t send them at all for whatever reason of their own, or aren’t able to deal with sending them internationally, and that’s fine. I mean people who haven’t contacted me in some way over the last couple of years, whether it’s an email, chat, phone call, postcard, comment on blog or Facebook, whatever. If they don’t care, I’m not bothering. (There: my poor overburdened wrists, that were already aching from typing, knitting, and rowing, feel better already.) On the other hand, that may mean I ought to do e-cards for some people I talk to frequently online and don’t have other means of contacting.

27,000 meters done on the Holiday Challenge so far; I did some math today that confirmed me in thinking that sticking to 100,000 meters is a far far better idea. Even if I’d done a half-marathon today (I didn’t!) to complete the whole 200km in the time I have available, I’d have to do two weeks in a row of 81,000 meters / week, otherwise known as more distance than I have ever done in a week. even when in training for a marathon. Nope.

I am currently reading 1066: The Hidden History in the Bayeaux Tapestry, which was recommended by my FIL, since we’ll be seeing the thing in a few weeks. FIL said this book really helped him appreciate what he was seeing. I’m sure that will be true; it will be good to have read a scene-by-scene interpretation. However, I keep wanting to yell at the book. The author is advancing a theory for a lay audience that apparently has been gaining currency in the scholarly journals: that the Bayeaux Tapestry is not a celebration of their victory by the Normans, but rather an English view, with subversive layered meanings in several scenes, explaining to themselves why God thought fit to punish them with the Norman Conquest. Overall, the author has made a compelling case (and given me a new view of the conquest, which was far more brutal than I’d realized). However, he makes the common mistake of not realizing that bolstering your point with stupid arguments doesn’t add to the preponderance of evidence, it just makes people think your arguments can’t be trusted. Sample argument: The Archbishop of Canterbury, Stigand, a known political opportunist who had been excommunicated by five different Popes, is said to be standing next to King Harold just after his coronation NOT because he has crowned him, but because the English artist of the tapestry is showing Stigand to prove that the English nation has sinned. The argument given for this is that the Archbishop of York must have crowned Harold because he had previously consecrated a church Harold had built. Um, yeah.