After my reading lethargy last weekend, today is the day I can shine. I did a lot of knitting over the past week. Season 5 of Game of Thrones was involved, but mostly I was just sucked into the allure of this soft, beautiful yarn. I’ve finished the back of my sangria sweater and about six inches of the front.
Among many other books, I’m reading Jonathan Lyons’ The House of Wisdom: How the Arabs Transformed Western Civilization, and I am loving it. I remember when I used to think reading history was hard; now I’m more likely to complain that history books water the material down to appeal to the general reader (which is not me, according to my ego) – but this book is just right. It’s low on charts and illustrations, but the author doesn’t hesitate to devote long paragraphs to the roles of individuals in the larger picture of history.
My favorite fact so far is that the reason the British call their national treasury the “exchequer” (I’ve always wondered) is that medieval European mathematicians were so incompetent that they used a big checkerboard (Lyons calls it a “special tablecloth”) to manage the royal budget. I find this fairly hilarious. And what’s not to like about a book in which the author cites a source named “Notker the Stammerer”?
That’s all for now. Yarn Along is hosted by Ginny on her blog, Small Things.