Thursday, September 30, 2004

So last night I was at the Astros game (big surprise). This Caucasian guy sat to my left, and my friend sat to my right. A player of Japanese descent was up to bat for the opposing team. He strikes out, so the Caucasian guy sitting next to me proceeds to call the batter "Mr. Miagi," as he was talking to someone on his cell phone. He said it TWICE. I turn to my friend and say, "You'll never believe this BUT...." My friend was in shock, "Is he fucking blind????" I said, "YEs, apparently..."

After about 10 minutes of calming myself down, I turn to Caucasian guy and say, "Can I ask you something?" He says, "Yes." I lean toward him and say, "Can you please refrain from referring to So Tamaguci as 'Mr. Miagi?'" He smiled, nodded and said yes as he turned red.

I could have said much more but thought better of it. I think he went home feeling like a big piece of shit.

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

Angie with no running water and smelling like Bourbon St...and we thought you were so respectable!

Some Seattle photos:
Marcus, more interested in what is on the kitchen counter than posing for photos with the shredded fingerless gloves I knitted.


The very tiny, very fragrant melon I bought at the farmer's market. Red pear shown for scale.


The tiny plums, from the same farm.


And now, the baby goat:

Her horns are just starting to bud!

Monday, September 27, 2004

It was a rough weekend. On Fri. night, a friend convinced me to go to a bachlorette party in NOLA on Sat. There were 11 of us in all, all but one was a native. I don't know if any of you have come into contact with a group of NOLA girls under one single roof, but it's certainly a sight. Shelly, Stephanie and I will have to put on a one-act at the summit.

Sometimes I feel like I act too old and am not spontaneous enough, so every now and then I have to prove to myself otherwise. This was one of those weekends. The after-effects weren't too terribly bad, but I've had my fill of spontaneity for at least another year. Ha!

Since there was so many girls in one hotel suite, I decided to wait till I got home to take a shower. Lo and behold, I had a water problem! Angie entered panic mode and phoned a friend for help. We determined that there was a water main line break so I was WITHOUT WATER AND SMELLING LIKE BOURBON STREET. City plumbers had been working on the problem since early that morning. I ended up calling another friend who lives nearby so that I could secure a place to shower and possibly sleep for the evening. By 7 p.m. though, all was right in the world, and I had water.

In a word: Phew!

Thursday, September 23, 2004

When riding the bus in Seattle, listening to my iPod means I could be missing out on hearing things like the bus driver hollering at the car in front of him "WHY you kissin that tourist ass? Just GO. TURN! No, you can't, 'cause you not a bus! HA HAA! I LOVE my job!" I made a Seattle Bus Ride playlist anyway.
Polaroid/Richmond Fontaine
Airstream/Fastball
For What It's Worth/The Cardigans
Sascha/Jolie Holland
Come Away With Me/Norah Jones
Man On The Moon/R.E.M.
Flashlight Tornado/Papa M
Portland Oregon/Loretta Lynn w/ Jack White
Long Time Coming/The Delays
Somewhere Only We Know/Keane

Things to see from the window:
On the way in from the airport, I knew I had reached Capitol Hill when I saw a large bald man with a bushy beard sporting his summer outfit: black tank, black running shorts, black knee socks.

There is a tiny little park that shouldn't really count as a park - it's a triangle between three busy streets, with a bench and big pillars in the faux ancient Rome style. A bride was being all glowy and radiant with a bridesmaid holding a reflector and a photographer running around getting the perfect shot, which I assume didn't include the homeless man sitting on the other side of the pillar the Bride was being photographed at. He was rocking back and forth with his head in his hands while she smiled and posed and looked all luminous and stuff, because It's Her Special Day and Nothing Will Ruin It (including a groom, as there was none present). This suggests to me that I should throw a My Special Day party one of these days as I don't intend to get married. My friends can wear horrible dresses that I pick out ("would you like the lavendar or the daffodill yellow polyester?"), I will wear a gigantic dress, my parents can get misty (and then Dad can get smashed), there will be cake, and it will be My Special Day.

There's more, but the goat won't stop crying and it's getting to me.

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

While Stephanie and I dig the same music, I don't think we can hang at festivals. I admittedly was one of the pizza eaters. In my defense, that pizza was good! Thin crust, and the chef's spicy meat option was da bomb!

Last night I made a pot of black beans for the first time. I had to call one of my Latina friends to go over the recipe. It was sooooo good, I was impressed with myself. At least now I can make a few veggie friendly meals for Zach if I ever meet him in person. Mock chicken tofu, black beans served over jasmine rice, eggplant parmesan, tuna patties with a mashed potato base, veggie stir-fry, dill carrots, veggie lasagna, artichoke balls, quesadillas, tofu and orange bundt cake.

All this food talk is making me sleepy.

Monday, September 20, 2004

Angie - how was your overall fest experience? We saw Neko Case and Patti Griffin on Friday - but the extreme heat drove us home after. And Saturday and Sunday we went from 5pm on - I am a Southern girl but keep me from AC, put me in a field of 75,000 plus people in 100 degree heat and high humidity and I get cranky, very cranky. So the evening shows were very enjoyable. I really liked Elvis Costello, Spoon and Wilco last night. Though I've been draggin today at work after all the fun. (and the food was nothing on Jazz Fest - though the watermelon hit home as well as the fruit smoothies -
Dear person eating pepporoni pizza in aforementioned 100 degree heat and humidity "you are crazy"
love, stephanie
ps. the smell of your food made we want to vomit
(yeah, a little cranky).
Though it was great people watching, unironic sombrero sightings, multiple hackey sack/frisbee crews, and an overall friendly vibe (or maybe that was just the waves of Phish fans).

K, thanks for the encouragement.

I used to consider myself high maintenance till I met this one person who was full of complaints. On top of being complainy, the person was flaky, indecisive and judgemental. Of all the adjectives in the world, those are are pretty high on my pet peeve list. How do these people get jobs or function in the world? Don't they have a relative or a loved one that can tell them to get the fuck over it? I did what I could but I'm not about to embark on my Christ complex for someone I barely know.....

In other news, I went to the Austin City Limits Festival this weekend. I saw 15-20 bands. My favs were Bob Schneider, Blind Boys of Alabama, Patti Griffin, Rebirth Brass Band, Sheryl Crow, Mason Jennings, Josh Rouse, Jack Johnson, Mofro.

A friend of mine from Gibraltar wants to do a Mediterranean/Cajun potluck with me. I'm very excited at the idea....He may make stuffed squid (with bread crumbs and cheese). Yum! I think we should also at one point do a Lake Effect pot luck. That would ROCK.

Saturday, September 18, 2004

I'm glad NOLA still exists and that Angie is so darn mean.

My image host went down for a couple of days, so I'm going to wait before posting photos. This Seattle trip involved quite a bit of dedicated regional eating for me - farmer's market (Organic Wednesdays at Pike Place, mostly, as getting my ass in gear in time for the University District farmer's market wasn't happening), Madison Co-op, Rainbow Market, Uwajimaya, and when eating out, a focus on things I can't get in Honolulu. A Tiny Food theme emerged, beginning with a tiny melon and some tiny plums. Tiny tarts from Le Panier were admired for their jewel-like qualities and appreciated for their pop-in-your-mouth size. The small size hot chocolate at Top Pot comes in a little teacup, which honestly isn't tiny but in this day and age of enormous sloshing buckets of drink, it looked overwhelmed by its dollop of whipped cream. There were some very small, very crisp, very juicy apples, and a small red pear which had the smoothest, sweetest flesh. The cornmeal zucchetti at the Elliot Bay bookstore cafe were quite petite as well. The blueberries and blackberries, on the other hand, weren't tiny at all. The toddler already knows that the best way to eat blueberries is to stuff as many into your mouth as possible.

I managed to eat vegetarian for the most part, darn the shrimp at El Greco and the smoked salmon that is so good and so affordable in Seattle! The Macrina Bakery has the best wholegrain bread I've ever had: Vollkorn can take center stage or be the best darn supporting role ever. Slathered with cream cheese and smoked salmon, it's amazing. The next time I'm in Seattle, it will be on a mission to sample all of their cakes.

Veering back to home, today was my brother's birthday. I made a chuck roast with onions, mushrooms, and peppers, shrimp scampi, rice, a huge salad with garlic vinagrette, and a coconut cake with swiss meringue frosting and vanilla ice cream. It's a real sedative of a meal, and I'm surprised that I'm still awake, considering I made everything except the ice cream. The chuck roast is easy - brown it on all sides in oil, then put in a baking dish with a sauce made of A-1, dry mustard, and lemon juice. Throw on the veggies, cover, and stick in a 275 degree oven for a couple of hours. I could break it up with tongs afterwards. Next time I think I'll add the veggies an hour or so in; the onions were mushy. The shrimp scampi is also quite simple: start with 3x the amount of butter the original recipe calls for. Heat until it froths up and subsides. Throw in the shrimp, wait a minute, throw in 2x the amount of minced garlic the original recipe calls for, wait another minute, stir around, wait a couple of minutes, put the shrimp in a nice bowl, dump lemon juice and vodka into pan, scrape up browned bits, add lemon zest, pour over shrimp, bammage with salt, pepper, and parsley. Well, the whole meal was easy. Just time-consuming. Every time I make a coconut cake I think I'll just use a box mix for the cake next time, and so far I haven't. My yellow cake is much denser than box mix yellow cake, but I suspect it holds up under the sour cream coconut filling better. The flavor might be better than box mix, but it's not like you can tell under the filling and frosting. The meringue frosting is too sweet for my taste, but my brother loves the texture (like high-grade marshmallow fluff).

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

I spent yesterday worrying about the fam and Ivan. My dad is out of the country, and my mom is not you're average independent woman. She's there with my grandmother who basically is stubborn and can't really rationalize all that well, and an aunt whom I have confidence in but she is a nurse and is on call. Finally they identified a safe, private shelter for my mom and grandmother so I'm feeling much better. It helps that the storm is headed more west at the moment.

My mom and aunt had some trouble convincing my grandmother to leave but she's physically dependent on a walker and really can't do much on her own. I was trying to explain to my mother that the bottom line was that my grandmother had no choice in the matter. I hate being the bitch but I often feel like I'm hearding cats.

I really hate to see the day when I'm old and young 'ens force me to do stuff against my will.

Just to give you an idea of how many people evacuated, it took people as long as 14 hours plus to drive what would normally take 6 hours. Crazy.

Tuesday, September 14, 2004

I'm back home after three lovely weeks in Seattle. Want to go back now. Much to post later - right now I'm tired and achy and have a load of work stuff to take care of first, so just a couple of highlights:

Earl Grey tea with honey + cornmeal rosemary zucchetti (a little cookie-esque thing) at the cafe in Elliot Bay Books = very, very good. Must be in the cafe, though, as the smell of old books and the wooden tables adds to the flavor.

Stitches is located right next to Toys in Babeland, which is, as far as I'm concerned, just perfect. Between the two, my budget took a big hit. My purchases included some lovely wool yarns, assorted sewing notions (buttons, tracing paper, snaps, that sort of thing) and books. The V Book will be prominently displayed on the bookshelf - yes people, I am That Kind Of Woman. I wanted to buy Talking Cock as well, but it's going to have to wait until the budget is revived.

As far as a two-year old is concerned, alligators and elevators are the same thing. The alligator going up and down the Space Needle is an especially fun alligator.

Saturday, September 11, 2004

made my first DVD at work yesterday. also got car sick on the ride home. slightly embarrasing.
"to move or not to move?" is the new question. 4.5 months remain for the answer. right now my answer leans toward "move!," but i haven't had the chance to change my mind 100 times yet, so i dunno. the boy is moving from right around the corner (4 blocks or a 7 minute brisk walk away) to a neighborhood 2-ish miles away, which isn't a lot if you travel by car all the time, but in the city that's a little difficult to do, especially in jan and feb. hope this doesn't change things too much. if i move, i'm thinking of staying in the same hood or moving a mile west (which would also be moving further away from the boy, but it's different when I think about moving as opposed to when HE moves.) anyway, more space would be nice now that i can actually afford a little more, and why shouldn't i enjoy a little splurge on myself for the rest of my time in philly (probably another 2 - 5 years, depending probably mostly on how things go with the new job)... or i could just stay in this place, which i really like, and work on making it more cozy.
spent too much money on target, mostly on things i want for my new job, like a fancy pen and pencil (but not really fancy... still under $5 fancy), a notebook for... well, notes, and 2 new lipsticks and other knick-knacks for my makeup bag, since i have to look kind of nice now. i think part of my new plan is also to try and become a fahsionista. or a style maven. i'm not sure which one is to the lesser degree, but that's the one i'll aim for.

Thursday, September 09, 2004

Congrats on all new jobs. Very exciting. In these parts, worked on my artist statement at lunch and photographed some eggs this afternoon (for work).

Wednesday, September 08, 2004

tomorrow is day 3 of my new job. so far, i love it!!

Sunday, September 05, 2004

Stephanie: I just e-mailed you back some suggestions. How exciting!

I'm home in NOLA, cooking for my mom. Per her request, it's chicken and dumplings. The mixture seems to be a bit watery so I'm trying to thicken it with some cream of mushroom soup. Hopefully that will do the trick.

Spent some time back at my alma mater, even managing to tailgate and make it to a game. I forget how huge college football is. Also I have at least five sets of friends (that I know of) that are season ticket holders. And tailgating, it has turned into an art form. We did it bare bones back in the day. Now people have tents and generators, DirecTV hook ups, RV's, portable BBQ pits. Crazy shit I tell you....

Visited with my best friend. We made a trip to rural Louisiana to visit her family. The highlight was taking her grandmother to lunch at the casino, then returning back later that night with her parents to enjoy the groves of the Boogie Kings. We were the only ones under 30 in the entire joint, pretty funny to think about. Anyways, they sent us home with all kinds of canned preserves and homegrown fruit (muscadines and sweet potatoes).

Warning: if any of you call me this week, my accent will be full-on.

Friday, September 03, 2004

Angie - I have to write a PR release for the first time ever (for my show of photos). Any advice? Or good websites to go to for a template to write from?
Help!