Saturday, February 27, 2010

Reporting from 3:44 am PST

Whatever I have approaching a muse is only made happy between the hours of midnight and 5 am. This seems to be thanks to my skewed circadian rhythm and years of training (read: putting off schoolwork until those hours.) It means that a. whatever I have approaching a voice as a writer is by default rambling and a little PUNCHy. b. I don't write as often as I'd like (not to mention c. I don't sleep as much as I'd like to.) By they way, by write I mean "write," and by "write" I mean blog, review books on goodreads, and compose lengthy emails that may or may not ever see the light of day. (Hi, KT!) Now, I've tried to convince it otherwise, but the muse just doesn't do creative writing. Well, shit. If I'm going to lose sleep, it'd be nice to knock out a great american novel every so often, you know?

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

visions of hubs dancing in my caffeinated head

Just came from my first bike class. I now know how to patch and change a flat. And have some vague mechanical idea of how bikes work (lots of ball bearings.) I also picked up my newly repaired specimen - no vital parts held on by masking tape! More than one gear! Best of all, I can get to work again without $70 parking tickets or riding the bus of death.

Unfortunately, I was super tired before the class so I stopped by Starbucks for the first time in... years? I wasn't actually sure what to order, as my go to drink has changed since then. (Skim latte has morphed into, depending on how obnoxious I feel at the moment, something approaching a soy-chai-mocha-latte. The in-store cafe people were a terrible influence with their free concoctions when I worked in Capitola.) The point being, I am very. awake. Blog readers win, second graders lose.

I'm currently jazzing up some leftover lentil soup with butternut squash. I am obsessed with butternut squash (and have an as yet unfulfilled yearning for malts) thanks to this podcast. Speaking of her soup, Inder's mom was in town for a long visit this month and wow am I still full. Enough hippie comfort food to feed an army, not to mention Inder chimed in with amazing whole wheat bread and home sprouts. Other than my valentine dinner, I'm not sure I got a meal of my own in edgewise.

Other things I have done in 2010 but not blogged about. A few weeks back I had a blissful weekend of snow and babes (the diapered kind) in tahoe, before that my dad visited, and before THAT I was in San Diego for the All-Cal convention. Also, marmalade, fluency testing, and books. Oh, the books. I seem to have hit a patch of stimulating books that resist all efforts to be reviewed. Too many thoughts. This is also holding up my 2009 book report - I'm one rave and one rant away from a pretty book cover widget.

Monday, February 15, 2010

In which I pretend like anyone actually still cares about my haircut

Okay Matt and Linda and Mom teeming masses, you've spoken, here are your befores and afters.

(Before: B&Q's caroling party. Almost as adorable a photo as this one.)

(After: You may recognize my "I'm taking a picture of myself to post on the internet. That's awkward." expression from other such awkward pictures of myself posted on the internet. Actually it looks suspiciously like R's expression in the first picture.)

And, for good measure, my jerryrigged mirror:

(Nowhere near as good as the incredible machine. But I wasn't proposing to anyone, just cutting my hair. It did the trick.)

Look, Katie! Lunchbot!

(You know I had to do the look-ma-i'm-using-your-present-photoshoot!)

Also, while we're on the subject of food enabling bffs, Natalia can be my valentine anytime. She ate my romantic dinner with appreciation, bordering on gluttony. (There is no greater compliment to the chef than gluttony, by the way.) On the menu was salad with blood orange vinaigrette and butternut squash curry. For dessert we alternated between red wine, chocolate ice cream, popcorn, my Manu Chao dvd, and travel plans. The highlight was watching her polish off an entire jar of strawberry jam (4 oz) in one sitting. By the jarful! Yes! This is what I'm talking about, people.

Friday, February 12, 2010

On birthdays and questionable presidential decisions

Another year, another birthday triumvirate. Happy day to Abe, Cynthia, and of course my own dear mother. (All of whom have graced the state of Illinois with their residence, if not their birth.)

In honor of the occasion, please enjoy this tidbit I stumbled upon whilst seeking President's Day printables for the kids. Who knew.

President Coolidge had a pet raccoon named Rebecca, originally meant for the dinner table on Thanksgiving. He built a little house for Rebecca outside the Oval Office and she could be seen walking up and down the White House hallways. She was fond of unscrewing light bulbs and uprooting palms. In the evenings, Coolidge walked Rebecca on a leash.

In one photograph taken on April 18, 1927, Rebecca is carried like a baby by the First Lady at the Easter Egg Roll on the White House Lawn. Rebecca was considered a member of the family. When the White House was undergoing repairs, the president sent a limousine to pick up Rebecca so she could join the rest of the First Family and wouldn’t be alone.

(Personally, I'm stuck on their Thanksgiving menu.)

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Haircut Deconstructed

[Editor's note: Oh my god, I just reread this post and it's SO LONG AND BORING. But I'm too lazy to figure out how to make it more entertaining. I'll post something better next time. Cross my heart.]

Another year, another haircut! Maybe when I turn 30 I'll swallow my dirty hippie pride and start paying someone who actually knows what they're doing to cut my hair. In the meantime, I will continue to hack away at my weirdly unpredictable hair, producing weirdly unpredictable haircuts and consoling myself with the negligible amount of money that I didn't actually spend on a stylist. I was in theory trying to grow my hair out, but once it got below my shoulders it got this really annoying shape that I couldn't figure out how to fix, because have I mentioned I don't know anything about cutting hair???? So I made Richard try to fix it, and then I tried to fix it, and in the process it climbed back up to shoulder length again. Oh well. Maybe next time.

So, should you wish to try this at home (not recommended), please be advised that my patented hair-cuttin' procedure takes approximately 4-6 days to complete (since every time I sleep on it and/or take a shower it looks different and I have to give it another trim), and I never know how it's going to turn out until I reach a point when I grow terrified that if I cut anymore it's going to be WAY TOO SHORT. Then I stop.

At least I'm moving up in the world - this time I was equipped with a pair of sharp barbering scissors (as opposed to the dull all-purpose scissors that usually get recruited), an actual comb (as opposed to the vintage tortoiseshell decorative comb with half its teeth broken out that was the closest thing to a non-brush I had until this year) and an ingenious method of looking at the back of my head involving a clothes hanger, a piece of ribbon, two rubber bands, a binder clip, and my hand mirror. I still couldn't manage to see the back of my head WHILE cutting, which was sort of the only reason I put together the whole contraption in the first place, but at least I didn't have to put down the comb and scissors and pick up the hand mirror in between every snip.

So how on earth does one cut hair that's sometime curly and sometimes straightish-wavy? Damned if I know. I just start at the sides and chop off pieces moving backwards until I get to that awkward place at the nape of my neck that I can't actually reach, and then I hand the scissors over to Richard with clear and detailed instructions ("Even it out. I don't know, just cut some. Take small pieces and cut sort of at an angle, so the holes are filled in. Take the top part of the scissors and sort of turn it away when you cut down. WAIT HOW MUCH DID YOU JUST CUT OFF???").

So there you have it. Easy as pie. I don't have any pictures with which to visually entertain you (anyways, I think I'm still at my penultimate trim, I probably have another day or so to go before my haircut emerges fully-formed into the world) so please enjoy this completely unrelated photo of a recent jaunt we took out to Coupland to go dancing for Bill's birthday.

Thursday, February 04, 2010

snow, come to me

I'm heading to Tahoe for the weekend, which means I must be a real Californian. In case there was any doubt that Inder and Steve are my people? They packed cookbooks. (The complete America's Test Kitchen and Secrets of the Jewish Baker.)

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

important debate

Straw poll people. How the hell do you pronounce the word "biopic?"

During a cinematic discussion, Richard made fun of my pronunciation. Bi-O-pic, I said. Obviously. Bio-pic, he said. Obviously.

Later, experts backed me up. Namely my dad and Inder. And, last night, Jon Stewart (@3:10).

Then, Richard fired back with Mirriam Webster and Touche.

A quick google reveals that the debate rages on.
"Bi-op-ic sounds like an eyesight problem."
"Bio-pic makes more sense...but I've almost always heard reviewers, people in documentaries about the movies etc. pronounce it bi-opic."

This is my blog, so I'm right, but thoughts, anyone? Spurious logic and flaming encouraged.

Monday, February 01, 2010

And no one did

So what does it say about me that I agreed to spend the rest of my life with a person who recently asked me to make sure that when he dies, his epitaph reads, "No one loved cured meats more"?