14 February 2007


So I mentioned to M while we were taking a walk in the woods that I wanted to start reading the Oxford Companion to Food again. She said, "What letter did you leave off at?" I said, "B..." Which sounds bad, but I finished the letter B this morning and realized that I was more than an eighth of the way through the book (120 out of 867 pages), even though I was only two letters through the alphabet.

I wonder why this is. Why this front-loading? Is it some sort of encyclopedist's fatigue, where you start off all diligent but by the time you get to N, you begin to leave out entries and summarize? Who really cares about "nougat" anyway?

Or is it maybe that if two words are synonyms with equal claim to being a topic heading, the one closer to A is the one that gets the heading?

Either way, it's good to have "bummalow" behind me and I'm looking hopefully toward "zuppa inglese."

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