Friday, November 19, 2010


Young Man with His Leg in a Cast in Hiland Park of Brooklyn New York City ... 07/1974

My computer is being shitty so I have about a half-dozen posts bottle-necked without pictures. When I get my new computer next week all hell is gonna break loose.

I guar-un-tee.

Friday, November 12, 2010

The Friday Feel-Good Club

Isn't the weekend a magical time? We look forward to it all week, compiling a list of all the things we're going to accomplish: letters to write, odd-jobs to fix, people to visit and places to haunt. Of course, many times we overbook ourselves, or get overwhelmed, or just plain laze the weekend away and are filled with the dreaded SUNDAY NIGHT REGRET. This is a terrible state of mind, wherein you kick yourself like a football and mope around, thereby ruining even the last precious hours of your weekend. Tsk-tsk.

But in the scheme of things, even a wasted weekend is a good one, as long as you had some fun and did a few things. So whenever I feel that Sunday Night Regret creep up, I resort to one of my fondest childhood Sunday rituals. I take a shower and towel-dry my hair, and let it air dry while I watch a movie. It reminds me so much of being very small and cared for, unconcerned with whatever Monday would bring. Of course, at that age Mondays usually meant coloring hand-turkeys and chocolate milk cartons - tough life!

So join me in becoming a member of the Friday Feel-Good club. Vow to enjoy your weekend (whatever it may bring) and refuse to bow to the Sunday Night Regret. Love every minute of your time off!

And now, a sign-off by the Friday Feel-Good Club mascot, Jules Verne the High-Fiving Kitty.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Haircuts and the Sickest Mac & Cheese

So last Sunday, after several weeks of bemoaning my increasingly wild and wavy hair, I grabbed a pair of scissors and decided to give myself a little flapper bob.

I was hoping for a little something along the lines of Dorothy Gish, a little Bernice Bobs Her Hair kind of action.

However, I ended up channeling Emo Philips.

ps: is this dude my real dad or what?

Now I'm not complaining. I think the cut is cute I don't mind the comparison. In honor of finding my coiffure soul mate, I want to give you all my recipe for truly sick out-of-a-box mac & cheese.


1 box shells & cheese (I am a hippy and eat that Annie's stuff)
1 can of black beans
1/4 cup milk/soymilk
1/2 tb butter
3 slices of cheddar cheese
at least 3 tbs of Tabasco chipotle sauce

1) Drain and rinse the beans and set aside.
2) Boil and drain the shells as usual.
3) In a saucepan combine the prepackaged cheese powder, milk and butter.
4) Add in everything else, including the beans and shells.
5) Stir and warm gently until everything is creamy and delicious.
6) Eat half of it out of the pot.
7) Take two tums and lay down on the couch.

At my lemonade stand I used to give the first glass away free and charge five dollars for the second glass. The refill contained the antidote. - Emo Philips

Sunday, November 7, 2010

a good weekend

As I stare down the end of my twenties I've found that my criteria for a good weekend have undergone a definite shift. I no longer count quality in hours spent away from my house, the number of people met or shows played. My pursuits have taken a turn for the quiet, the mindful, the small events warmed with the comfort of home.

I have a lot of kitchen weekends. Every two weeks I bake bread, one loaf for the breadbox and one for freezer. At least once a month I make a stock pot worth of vegetable broth to keep in the fridge. I also like to take advantage of the longer evenings to make more complicated meals, or try out new recipes.

kitchen chaos

This weekend I filled my kitchen with creative anarchy. I brewed 8 cups of veggie broth and baked my usual loaves, but I also put together some wonderful meals.

Friday dinner: tofu simmered in homemade BBQ sauce, served with roasted cauliflower

Saturday dinner: chickpea-seitan cutlets and mashed potatoes served with mushroom gravy and a spinach salad

I invented a lovely vinaigrette for the salad which I suspect will become my go-to dressing for the foreseeable future. I also gave more thought to my off-again-on-again daydream of putting together a little booklet of recipes I have devised. It might be a good winter project.

rising bread

I love to cook for a million different reasons. I love the creativity. I love recognizing the harmony in a dish, and learning to taste for what is there and what is lacking. I love knowing how to do something that is both a necessity and a luxury at the same time. I love to feed my friends and family. I love to eat. But most of all I love the quietness of the activity, the solitude and quiet mind it affords me, the chance to remember, or plan, or just look out the window and watch the juncos gathering on my neighbor's eaves.

Fall has definitely come to Tennessee. The trees are giving up their leaves reluctantly, one by one. Each day the ginko outside my office blushes with a little more yellow. The mornings are cold and I shiver at the bus stop, unsure if I will be carrying my jacket home or puffing icy breaths at 5:30pm. I have begun looking forward to the holidays. I bought two sets of airline tickets: one to visit my family for Thanksgiving and the other to stay with Matt's family for Christmas. Riding a bike now requires gloves. Hot tea sounds good but wine sounds even better. When the cat curls up she buries her nose in her tail like a little fox.

fall 2010

The only dark mark on the weekend was Daylight Savings ending with the usual floating discontent. It's hard to leave work in the darkness, to feel the cold creep in a little earlier, but the darkness heralds more then just the specter of winter.

It means cozy afternoons in the kitchen.

It means sharing body heat and a collage of blankets on the bed.

It means crisp walks from point A to point B and hoisting a pint with our winter coats hanging off the back of chairs.

It means seeing family I don't see enough.

It means turning another year older.

It means many more good weekends.

Friday, November 5, 2010

In which I admit my ignorance

There are a few subjects in which I consider myself an expert: rat and mouse fancy, the life and times of P.T. Barnum, and script inconsistencies in 1992's Batman Returns. In a broader sense my trivia knowledge seems to be clustered into the green pie wedge: Science and Nature. That is why what I have to share with you today has rocked me to the very core.

I'm sure you are all familiar with a certain scene from the movie Big, in which Josh Baskin, in his new 30-year-old body, has his first run in with the phenomenon of 'baby corn'.

We saw that and we all laughed. How silly! He was eating baby corn like it was regular corn! Baby corn is not regular corn! Laughing! Laughing! And yet, a sinister question perched in the back of our minds...

What exactly is baby corn?

Somewhere between 1988 and now I got the idea in my head that baby corn, despite its appearance, is actually a distinct species. It is some kind of exotic swamp plant like a water chestnut, found only in Asian groceries and Chinese dishes, with only a superficial resemblance to good old 'merican corn-on-the-cob maize. The same plant? Pah! No way! It would just make too much sense.

Well, I think you know where I'm going with this.

Sunday evening, to my utter bewilderment, I learned that baby corn is actually nothing more than literal BABY CORN. It is immature corn harvested as soon as the silk starts to peek past the husk, just as the little niblets have begun to form. You can learn more about baby corn and its weird powers with this downloadable pamphlet from Washington State University.

I hope that by admitting my shameful ignorance of baby corn, I can help those that read this to life fuller lives, free from embarrassing gaffes regarding tiny vegetables. So please, never forget,

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Halloween Recap

Matt and I threw a little Halloween party last weekend. The day started out with an auspicious omen: a double-yolked egg!

double yolk

It went into the kitty-litter cake I baked for the party.

Here I am in my costume as 'Little' Edie Beale:

Little Edie Beale

For those playing along at home, this was the scene from Grey Gardens I was inspired by:

Here is Matt and Dave chatting before the main event. Matt is dressed as himself circa 15 years ago. Dave is dressed as a dead cosmonaut, as inspired by a certain blog post.

1993 Skater and Dead Cosmonaut

The party was a lot of fun and the witching spirit was all around us. I wish I had action pictures, but whenever stuff gets cooking I'm the first person to throw the camera into a drawer and forget about it.

However, below is the sign I posted on the back door. I think it proves that "the devil is in the details", particularly when it comes to party planning...

Baphomet sez