Serial software entrepreneur, writer, translator, and mother of 3. Avid follower of French media, culture, history, and language. Lover of books, travel, history, art, cooking, fitness, and nature. Cultivating connections with francophiles and francophones.

November Potpourri: Blunders, Ballerinas, and Other Startling Tidbits

Aerial view of Eiffel Tower

Throughout the month I come across a fair number of articles, blogs, images, books, or videos that I’d like to share with readers, but they don’t necessarily work into my typical format. So, I’ve decided to create a monthly post that briefly highlights some of the Internet gems that have…

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Con-Man Kurniawan Exits Prison then Vanishes From the Public Eye

Wine glass, screw, and corks

In June of 2019, I wrote about Rudy Kurniawan, Extraordinary Forger of Fine Wine. Kurniawan’s story is told in the documentary film, Sour Grapes, and in an award-winning book, In Vino Duplicitas. In short, he was a young and charismatic wine dealer who scammed wealthy wine collectors out of millions…

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Evangeline, Longfellow’s Epic Poem and its Remarkable French Translation

Evangeline book cover

In recent weeks, I’ve been making my way through The Story of French, a history of the French language. In a chapter devoted to French spoken in Canada, I was reminded of the history of the Acadian people. The authors made note of an epic poem, Evangeline by Henry Wadsworth…

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The Paris Attacks of November 13 and One Psychiatrist’s Confession

Place de la République, January 2016

Today marks the fifth anniversary of the Paris attacks that took place across the city in 2015. That evening, suicide bombers and gunmen with automatic weapons carried out 6 separate attacks including one inside the Bataclan Theater where a rock concert was underway. 130 people were killed and 413 wounded.…

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Short Fiction from Steinbeck and Triolet, Popular 20th-Century Luminaries

Painting attributed to Vincent Van Gogh

Since getting serious about blogging last spring, I’ve started visiting other blogs to gain insights and inspiration. In doing so, I’ve discovered a vast and varied online community of people that typically write well about their passions and perspectives. One popular subgroup contains book enthusiasts that read scads of books…

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October Potpourri: Ghosts, Gags, Galleries and More Unexpected Distractions

Lego de Triomphe

Throughout the month I come across a fair number of articles, blogs, images, exhibits, or videos that I’d like to share with readers, but they don’t necessarily work into my typical format. So, I’ve decided to create a monthly post that briefly highlights some of the Internet gems that have…

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Juliette Drouet; The Lonely Life of Hugo’s Devoted Mistress

Juliette Drouet, circa 1850

Two weeks ago, I wrote about a love letter that Victor Hugo wrote to his mistress, Juliette Drouet, shortly after fleeing France to live in exile. In that post, I remarked that over the course of their impressive 50-year relationship, Juliette penned roughly 20,000 letters to the storied author. It’s…

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