How to Become Wise(r)

PICTURE, ON EVERYTHING/PLACE/PERSON/MOMENT you encounter, a big bright label that says, “LEARN HERE.”

Prosatio Silban and the Infinite Application

THE RICH PANOPLY OF UULIAN cuisine offers recipes suitable for everyday use, as well as those forming the culinary backbone of special occasions. And sometimes, one can serve in both roles.

Prosatio Silban smiled the smile of a man completing a beloved task. Just right for the Heir Second’s feasting-table, he thought, putting the finishing touches on his work. It’s amazing that this one dish can be applied to any occasion.

He paused, reflecting, and his smile deepened. Indeed: here is history on a plate! This has been cooked at countless times and places since the Uulian Commonwell began, and perhaps even before. I feel privileged to bring it to life for all who request it…

How to Cook Anything, in Four Easy Steps

1. PREPARE INGREDIENTS.

2. Combine them.

3. Adjust temperature as necessary.

4. Serve.

(To paraphrase the sage Hillel, “The rest is dishwashing. Now go dry.”)

Prosatio Silban and the Familiar Spirit

WHEN VISITING YOUR BOYHOOD HOME after the passage of too-many years, it’s only natural that it should seem quite a bit smaller than last you saw it.

But aside from towering over the landscape, Prosatio Silban was amazed by how little Bustan had changed: the same thatched creekside huts, the same arched stone bridge, the same goat-browsed village common, the same ivy-covered inn.

I should really get back here more often, he thought. But I know I won’t.

If my audience will feel that these interpretations are also relevant to their perceptions and emotions, I shall feel amply rewarded. However, I shall not feel hurt if my thoughts will find no response in the hearts of my listeners.”
— Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik, The Lonely Man of Faith

Prosatio Silban and the Midnight Invader

THERE ARE FEW SITUATIONS AS disquieting as falling awake in the middle of the night convinced you’ve heard an intrusive sound, but with no aural evidence to back such an urgency.

Prosatio Silban lay still in his galleywagon’s sleeping berth, listening to his own breathing. He could have sworn there was something else that oughtn’t be. But try though he might, he could hear neither scratch nor skitter of mouse-paws, nor the enthusiastic chewing of a meat-seeking voonith. Two potential wilderness culprits eliminated, he thought. But why, then, am I awake?

A Prosatio Silban Amuse-Bouche: Room

“DOESN’T IT MAKE YOU CLAUSTROPHOBIC to cook in such confinement?” asked a visitor to Prosatio Silban’s close-quartered galleywagon.

“Less than you would think,” the beefy cook answered over the chop-chop-chop of mincing lizard-breast. “I actually find that it makes me more focused and disciplined. Sloppiness comes from spreading out – a dirty dish here, a crumpled towel there. But when everything has its own cozy and ordered place, and space is at a premium, there is no wasted effort and no wasted time. A good cook is economical in both movements and ingredients; and that can’t help but result in a tastier meal.”

(If you’re new to these tales, here are the preface and introduction.)