Sunday, November 30, 2008

Haute Cature

My parents bought Kitty a sweater.

I could barely take these pictures with my cell phone, I was laughing so hard.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Bluer than Blue

I just watched Wong Kar Wai's film "My Blueberry Nights."

It's frickin' gorgeous. And by that I mean that beyond having an extremely good looking cast, the look of the film is painterly and almost distractingly beautiful. There were shots that had these compositions that had the feel of still lifes ( still lives?), scenes shot through windows and doorways framing the action, delicious and drenched in color.

It is a mood piece. You see, you hear, you pick up the vibe, you imagine, you dream. It transmits frequencies - love, lostness, connection, uncertainty, strength, desire, floating, seeking, loss, alienation, buoyancy, the curious intimacy that you can only share with strangers.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Sometimes you sweat the small stuff

I am going through one of those "for want of a nail" periods in my life. It's not that a kingdom, my kingdom, is on the verge of being lost.

The scenario is more that there are things that I want to get done. They seem to be simple things. At least they seem simple until I actually try to accomplish them.

My options breakdown to: A. throw money at the problem, or B. solve a series of very small interdependent problems that lead to other interdependent problems that eventually lead to the ability to get things done.

And the internal dialogue goes like this: "Ok. Deep breath. This is totally doable. If I want to save the kingdom what I really need is to win this battle which requires me to have that rider which means getting this horse which means getting that horseshoe replaced. Yeah, I'd better get online and find a blacksmith to take care of this. Am I bringing my own horseshoes? Maybe I'll bring one just in case. And if I don't end up replacing them all, I really should ask him to check the nails on the rest of them, I wonder if has any entries on blacksmiths ..."

Friday, November 21, 2008

I will try to talk about other things after this, I promise

On Wednesday, I went back to Momofuku with CK, SD, and PD. This is the Momofuku Ssam Bar. It was pointed out to me that there is more than one Momofuku in this city. I was a little worried that it would not be as good as I remembered it.

I was ecstatic to be proven wrong. The pork buns - this time I found myself licking my hand to catch the juices running out from the bun. I didn't realize that I was doing it at first. It was an instinct. And when I did notice, that did nothing to stop me. Love has no pride.

SD and PD love food. They eat with real passion. When the first few dishes came to the table SD partook and said positive things. But when the fluke arrived at the table, she was utterly won over and from then on you could tell that she was hooked.

They make a Brussel sprout dish that has changed my mind about Brussel sprouts. I won't eat them anywhere else, but I could eat them by the bowlful there.

The Brisket, my God, the Brisket. There were times during the meal where I couldn't make eye contact with other people. The experience was too personal to share. The Brisket was one of them.

The Spicy Pork Sausage with Rice Cakes were ordered on my account. Crunchy and chewy and flavored. This is not your run of the mill Rice Cake. If the chef will not have me, then I will offer myself up to the one who works the Rice Cake station. *swoon*

As I got full, I started to feel a little bit sad, because it meant that I would have to stop eating.

And as happened the other time, no one wanted dessert. We were so blissed out that sweets seemed so - unnecessary, though I can only imagine how they must be.

SD was beaming for the rest of the night. She would turn to me and say, "I'm happy. I'm so happy right now." I could only nod in agreement.

A little smooth music to take the edge off, Pussycat?

Yesterday, while FM was noodling around on the piano I was reminded of "Minute by Minute" by the Doobie Brothers.

Before I pegged it there, I thought it was "Biggest Part of Me" by Ambrosia.

And now, I've caught the fever. I want to rollerskate on the boardwalk in hot pants and drink pink champagne from those flat glasses.


Tuesday, November 18, 2008

We Are Family, My Kangaroo Sisters and Me

I am not sure to what degree this article: "Kangaroo Genes Close to Humans" is new newsy news. It's one of those things where, had it gone the other way, we'd all be ooo-ing and ah-ing about the amazing genetic diversity of life. Having it go this way is alright too, although slightly less novel and spectacular. You just don't know until you do the experiment, right?

The quotes are just so good, who could resist running with it ...

"Australia's kangaroos are genetically similar to humans and may have first evolved in China, Australian researchers said Tuesday."

This work was done by the Centre of Excellence for Kangaroo Genomics, in Australia which is now the site of my dream job.

"There are a few differences, we have a few more of this, a few less of that, but they are the same genes and a lot of them are in the same order," centre Director Jenny Graves told reporters in Melbourne.

"We thought they'd be completely scrambled, but they're not. There is great chunks of the human genome which is sitting right there in the kangaroo genome," Graves said

Humans and kangaroos last shared an ancestor at least 150 million years ago, the researchers found, while mice and humans diverged from one another only 70 million years ago.

Baby it's truuuuuee, me and yooooouuu, we are kangaroooooo!

Just makes me want to hop with joy.

Monday, November 17, 2008

what rhymes with oven

I fell asleep last night thinking about rice cakes and woke up thinking about pork buns. *sigh*

At the greatest meal of my life, before the food arrived, FC told us of how bringing baked goods led to proposals of marriage, while wearing sexy and revealing clothing did not.


Then again, I suppose one appetite can be gratified in a variety of places, while the other requires large appliances and oven mitts.

Try this for oven rhymes

This website makes me happy

Saturday, November 15, 2008

What you ask for

When I first told PJS that I thought I might want to stay in New York for a while, she chalked it up to Stockholm Syndrome. I laughed about that. But there are days here where I wonder if that is true. My life here is pretty silly, to be sure. And yet it does not give me quite the pleasure that I would expect such a silly life to deliver.

I get restless and dissatisfied, cranky, tired and bummed out, lost, overwhelmed, and lonely, so so lonely. This would be true anywhere, I am sure but while here, I can conveniently blame it on this place. People in response to my belly aching often ask, Why do I stay? What am I waiting for? Questions that I ask myself at least as often.

I thought I was waiting to get successful. I was waiting to prove my worth to myself and the world. I thought I was waiting to come into my own, to find myself, to find my purpose, my calling. I thought I was waiting to crack the code of this city and conquer it. I thought I was waiting to fall in love with someone or some idea or something. Or some such clichee. But actually none of that is true.

I was waiting for two things:

1. To have the greatest meal of my life.

Now, I have to say that I have actually had the greatest meal of my life six times in this city. But tonight was the first time that plates of food inspired in me a love for the universe and a singular passion for the chef. The pork buns at Momofuku are love, plain and simple. Our party of six proposed to him right after the appetizers were served. It will be a small private ceremony. A simple affair, with a few members of our immediate families present.

2. To be in the presence of someone famous who I like and greatly admire.

We were sitting there and WC's friend J pointed to a gentleman at another table and said, "I think that man over there is famous. He looks like the kind of person who does a show on PBS, like Charlie Rose." I carefully turned to look and it was Charlie Rose. (!!!!) Charlie Rose!!!!!

We finished our meal and went out and I tried to steal another look at him but didn't manage it. There were too many people obscuring my view.

Our dinner party was milling around outside. Some of us smoking, all of us chatting and watching the rain, when who should leave the restaurant, but the man himself. J exchanged pleasantries with him. Some girls came up and asked to have their picture taken with him and he agreed. He has a great smile. He was so affable, so warm. The charm he projects in person is magnitudes beyond what you get off the screen, if you can imagine.

I cannot speak to famous people whom I admire. Even quasi-famous local people. I get super shy. I am a blathering idiot. It's terrible. So I don't even try. Everyone laughed at me and teased me for not talking to him. But I couldn't, I just smiled.

The thing about living in New York is that there is always so much going on. And I always have this feeling that I am missing something. I have not seen everything, met the key people, nor accomplished much. "I'm not internationally known" or "known to rock microphone." I have not been to all the cool bars, I have not had the best meals, or worn the best clothes, I have not seen Ellis Island or been on the Staten Island Ferry.

But as he walked off I felt like what I have seen and experienced is enough. I had seen everything I needed to see here. I have had the greatest meal of my life and I have been in spitting distance of a famous person who I respect and admire. And he seemed very much in person as he was on TV. I could leave without regret.

Of course, if tomorrow I run into Chuck Klosterman, Malcolm Gladwell, Peter Gabriel and Travis Morrison and they invite me to join them for beer and popcorn, I am not going to sniff at that. Nor have I packed my bags to leave.

Here's the funny thing. On Wednesday, I was out with History Guy and in the course of conversation with him I said: 1. I was surprised at how rare it was for me to have an incredible meal in New York. 2. I said that the two people in all the world who I wanted to meet were Malcolm Gladwell and Charlie Rose.

Go figure.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Or a Dance to a Constantly Surprising Refrain

Recently while I was out and about I ended up in a conversation with a young man, very young, 23, about life. At some point during the evening he asked me why I wasn't married, why I was single and why I lived alone. Maybe this is a Long Island thing. Off the island I am a curious creature to live as a do...

I didn't have much of a reply. I said nothing had really worked out for me up to this point but there was always the chance that it would in the future.

In conversation with CK it occurred to me that maybe the reason is: I want love to be like "The Very Thought of You" ignoring the fact that it's actually like: "My Romance".

As I sit here now, I realize that I've actually loved in both ways, sometimes simultaneously and it was great. Just great. And then one day it wasn't.

I guess I'll stick with my first answer and say, nothing has really worked out for me up to today but there is always tomorrow.

Friday, November 07, 2008

Freedom, Freedom to, freedom from, and Zombies

"We helped them reclaim their nation, and they helped us reclaim ours. They showed us the meaning of democracy ... freedom, not just in vague, abstract terms, but on a very real, individually human level. Freedom isn't just something you have for the sake of having, you have to want something else first and then want the freedom to fight for it."

-Max Brooks, "World War Z"

GRCH is lending me the book "World War Z: an Oral History of the Zombie War." And while I was initially skeptical about it, "Ooooo zombie novel ...." It's really damn good.

I am sorry to hear that a movie based on this book is in the works for either Brad Pitt or Leonardo Di Caprio. If the movie ends up being the Zombie version of "The Longest Day" or more, I will be mollified. Anything less and I will be beyond furious. If Pitt or Di Caprio saves the world from Zombies with the aid or their girlfriend, played by Jessica Alba in the movie I will be spitting mad.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

a Hug with a Hoodie

I have been walking around today with the strangest sensation. I feel like someone somewhere loves me. Not someone that I can name. It's kind of a freefloating sensation. It's not the first time I have felt this way since moving to NYC. It's always kind of strange.

I was telling CK about it. It feels so great. And yet, weird. As I was describing the sensation to her, what I came up with is that I feel like I am getting this really great hug.

And then it occurred to me. Maybe it was my sweatshirt. I am wearing this rust colored fleece sweatshirt today that my mom bought me. It's super warm and a little heavy. For the first time since the change of season, I am sitting here feeling not cold.

It must be the sweatshirt. I am wearing the sweatshirt of love. It's a gift from my mother.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

People get ready

"This victory alone is not the change we seek -- it is only the chance for us to make that change. And that cannot happen if we go back to the way things were. It cannot happen without you ... in this country, we rise or fall as one nation; as one people." - President Elect Barack Obama

There is important work to be done. As always.