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Test Pattern: ‘Star Wars’ trailer

Share your thoughts on movie sneak peek. By Gael Fashingbauer Cooper

Five-link Friday; "Star Wars" trailer

Time for another five-link Friday, but first, a new discussion topic.

Although I’m not a regular watcher of “The O.C.,” I did happen to catch the trailer for the next movie that ran at the end of the show Thursday night. And now I want to know: If you saw it, what did you think of it? What would you like to see in the final movie? Whether you’re a rabid fan or just a casual moviegoer,  

If you missed it, I understand it'll start showing this weekend at theaters showing the new movie "Robots," and that it'll be online at starting on March 14 (it's already there, but only for paying members at the moment).

• Speaking of “Star Wars,” how long must it have taken to create Amazing.

• And speaking of “The O.C.,” yet another of those online quizzes asks: I’m … Kirsten? Hmm, I know enough about the show to be not too thrilled with that. (Thanks to Paige -- er, I mean "Seth" -- for the link!)

• Last week on “Lost,” Hurley revealed a that won him big bucks in the lottery, but then cursed him. Seems that lots of viewers were .

• Maybe this should actually go in my colleague instead, but I love the . (Via .)

• Ken Jennings beat just about every challenger in sight on Jeopardy!, but a new board game asks:

Martha fans speak out

I'm who would hate to see Martha Stewart's magazine go under. Your feedback on this topic was voluminous, and can be divided into about four groups:

1) Women who agree, they love and save the magazine, even though they may never tackle the most complicated projects.

2) Women who DO tackle the most complicated projects and are offended that anyone suggests they are complicated.

3) Women who think Martha is a criminal and a liar and even suggesting buying her magazine is treason.

4) Women who point out that the remark about the magazine being a sideshow () was made by a man, who's probably never read an issue in his life.

It's possible that some men wrote in, but from the names on the e-mails, I'd say most responders are women. One assumed I was a man and that I hated Martha, neither of which are true.

There were too many great responses to print, but here's a sampling, and thank you.

KEEPING THINGS IN ORDER
“Out of all the magazines I’ve subscribed to over the years, MSL is the only one that I have kept on my bookshelf, in chronological order of course (because that is how Martha would do it). But I did let my subscription lapse when Martha’s calendar, Letter and Remembering column disappeared. I just wasn’t interested anymore if I didn’t get a glimpse of Martha’s life. If they brought it back, I might resubscribe.”    —Julie

MAKING US BELIEVE“Am I ever going to spend the time to make a beautiful dessert with uber trimmings that I made myself, only to have my two teenagers devour it in three bites? Probably not. We don’t even know what canapes are, much less how to improve their beauty by presenting them with fancy accoutrements: but watching Martha do it in her sweet and patient way makes me believe that perhaps someday, when the kids are grown and more time is available, I just might want to do that.”     —Tina

MARTHA THE MENTOR
“I, too, have two boxes full of Martha’s magazines put nicely away for future reference.  I actually have used many of the ideas and recipes and hope to do more when time allows, namely when I finish graduate school and get tenure.  They really are simply to beautiful and informative to throw away.  Although I’ll never be able to live up to Martha’s calendar (which I also miss) I do like to dream it’s possible and admire someone who can.  Martha deserves to be recognized as a mentor to many women of all career paths—home or outside the home as time allows.”      —Traci

EX-SUBSCRIBER“I’ve stopped my subscription to Martha’s magazine.  While she was busy with other matters, the magazine suffered from a lack of attention to detail.  The topics covered weren’t half as interesting; Martha seemed to have a knack for finding just what the readers wanted to know.  If it was “how to fold a fitted sheet” or “how to make hard-wood smoked, emulsified beef or pork, stuffed into a cellulose casing then sliced product, mixed in a vat of heated tomato paste combined with sugar, sweetener, stabilizer E1422, salt, citric acid, E202, natural spices, and bourbon.”    —SE

ONION SANDWICHES“I agree!  They should reinstate Martha’s columns posthaste.  I, too, live a Martha life vicariously through her magazine - and I keep every issue.  I was interested to read that she ate onion sandwiches as a child.  I forgot all about eating onion sandwiches with my grandmother when I was young.  I think I’ll go home and make one for dinner tonight.”     —Cheri

MAKING MARSHMALLOWS“We have a long running joke at work about taking time off to make marshmallows for the holidays.  Won’t happen, but what a joy to contemplate that kind of discretionary time!”    —Jennifer

NOT A FAN“I agree one should continue to support criminals in any way we can. Any other brilliant thoughts?”        —Paula

Save Martha's magazine!

Martha Stewart is out of prison and back at her estate, no doubt hand-gilding eggs and weaving her own Easter baskets. The as saying Martha should close her magazine, Martha Stewart Living, and focus on TV and other projects.

"The magazine was a sideshow," said David Verklin. "[She should] kill it and close the chapter, [and] perhaps start a new magazine a few years from now." Apparently Martha Stewart Living the magazine is losing readers, ad pages and money.

Who am I to tell Martha how to run her empire, but I've got to admit, I'd be sad to see the magazine fold. I can't think of a time I've ever made anything out of MSL the Mag, but that's not the important part. It's a dream world that I'm convinced I'll one day have time for.  I can recycle copies of my other magazines, tossing them in the bin after only a quick read. But Martha's magazine goes into magazine holders in the basement, preserved for all time. I doubt I'll ever actually consult them again, but the issues are just too beautiful and too elaborate to be buried under coffee grounds and orange peels.

I can't be the only person who's inwardly convinced that we'll someday be given enough lives to go back and do things differently. Pursue a different career, move to a different place, somehow be a different person. Not better, just different.

In that life, I'm sure I'll have time to make the apple roses that decorate the tart in the February issue. I'll learn to tell conchiglioni pasta from conchigliette, as depicted clearly for me in the pasta chart on page 83 of that same issue. I'll decorate my Easter eggs not with , but with beeswax and a wax stylus, after first blowing out the insides so I can hang them on pussy-willow branches for decoration.

For Halloween, I'll make squash-leaf canapes and pumpkin pancakes (Martha — can I serve these together?). I'll decorate small pumpkins with powder glitter as Martha does on page 41 of the October issue — carving is so declassé! I'll can my own chow-chow and piccalilli (page 55) — that is, just as soon as I find out what they are.

Martha's magazine lost a little something when this whole insider-trading scandal first broke, and the Letter from Martha, her calendar, and her Remembering column vanished.

Martha's last-page childhood musings about how she only needed four hours of sleep and would get up and eat onion sandwiches have been replaced with a Cookie of the Month recipe. And the has been replaced with a yawn-worthy "Gentle Reminders" column which lists only the simplest chores, such as "give your car a good cleaning."

If the editors of the magazine are smart, they'll realize that these were the things that separated Martha's magazine from every other semi-snooty lifestyle magazine out there, and they'd bring them back with trumpets blaring.

I know at this point that I'll never get the chance to live my Martha life. I'm unlikely to hand-cut my own oatmeal and harvest my own pineapples. I'm more likely to go to a garage sale offering broken-down Smurf figurines than the kind of "tag sale" where Martha always stumbles upon complete collections of Jadeite dishes. But as long as her magazine keeps publishing, I can live the Martha life vicariously through its pages.

Slang around the world

While editing Jeannette Walls' Scoop column last week, I came across a Britishism that I’d had never heard before: A source referred to Elton John’s manager as a  

Grafter? As in someone who performs skin grafts? To this American, the closest word to “grafter” is “grifter,” which means a con artist. But that didn’t seem to be the meaning implied here.

Fortunately, a British co-worker set me straight: “Grafter” means a hard worker, from “graft,” which is both a verb and a noun meaning “work.”

If I hadn’t had an in-the-know co-worker, I could have turned to any number of online resources.

Peevish.co.uk offers a , and yes, “graft” is listed. It also includes a thorough examination of the term and a

Certainly some Irish slang is covered in the above guide, but you can also consult a specifically . A few of my favorites: A “pint of plain” is a pint of Guinness, of course; a “gur cake” is a dense fruitcake, and “Rubber Dollies” are running shoes, not to be confused with a “Rubber Johnny” (a condom).

Want to know what they’re saying on the street? is your best resource. My favorite: “Cabbage Patch Kid,” named for the horribly ugly 1980s dolls, has now morphed into slang for a rich kid.

Have a favorite slang site? Send it in!