Thursday, May 31, 2007

Save the Rhinos

So I had a bad day at work. So what. At least my entire species isn't on the precipice (well, not this week anyway). Learning that there are now, as of today, after the demise of Nadi, a rare white rhino in the San Diego Zoo, there are as few as thirteen -- 13 -- white rhinos left on this planet made me literally shudder, as if, as the old saw goes, someone just walked over my grave. But not my grave -- if I may be so hyperbolic -- the...the planet's. (OK a planet wouldn't have a grave per se but you know what I mean). It may have something to do with the fact the rhinos in general seem to me to actually be dinosaurs which I understand scientists have ruled out, but hey. I can't even touch upon the devastating fact that it is in large part due to human misdeed that these lovely warty beasts may disappear; you can read about it here.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

How Many Baby Carrots Have to Die?

Well, I estimate around 53. For my carrot-ginger soup, that is. I've perfected the recipe (well, for my palate at least) and posted it back on the kitlog, if you're interested. While poking around for the original recipe (which of course I had at my fingertips, on my bookshelf, in the Joy of Cooking -- '97 ed. -- but that's so... old school) I found variations (and a shout-out here to a lovely lady in Maine or Canada, not sure which) who posted it in the version closest to what was in my head.

Which reminds me of why I'm posting again here today. What's up with the fake baby veggies? Both my healthfood store (Lifethyme) and my stupormarket (William Morton on LaGuardia Pl) sell "fresh baby spinach" lovingly encased in plastic containers (which I'm trying in vain to devise a way to re-use). Anyway, it's NOT BABY SPINACH. It's... mature, adult and occasionally over-the-hill spinach impersonating baby spinach. It's like me saying I'm 22. I'd be laughed outta town. So how come these wizzled greens are being sold as the tender, virginal microgreens that they clearly AREN'T?

Catching Up at MOMA

detail from Jeff Wall's 1978 'The Destroyed Room,' MOMA (closed)

Cleo and I went to the Museum of Modern Art to see the Jeff Wall photography exhibit a couple of weeks ago. I liked its vibrancy and surreal realism (?) but didn't understand some of them. We're talking about huge blowups of exquisitely printed shots, often semi-staged (or fully? I don't know) but always grounded in the everyday.

One of the most interesting was a view of a panorama (the photo itself may have been panoramic in some sense, but the subject was a museum-type panorama with painted walls from the past -- there were stagecoaches and possibly Civil War militia men -- but also, in the nearer distance, what looked like restorers working on the walls... so... layers of reality here, replete with a strange round observatory-looking thing in the middle.

"Restoration," said the artist, "has a postrevolutionary, even counterrevolutionary implication. I was interetsed in the double entrendre in the title, the idea that panorama and the "regime" of restoration of which it is involved could be identified with an ancien régime, which ironically we are preserving, and even resuscitating, bringing back to life."

Wow, just realized you can view what may be the entire exhibit online, complete with zoom-in and commentary -- thanks, MOMA. You rock.

Congrats to Nicole and Manousos on their new baby. Yay! Nicole is another friend from my tenure at Scholastic (like Cleo, from above). They now (Nicole and Manousos, not Cleo) live in Crete (how cool is that?) where she is being creative and entrepreneurial.. Note to self: plan a trip to Greece. I found an older picture of us (as usual, I'm not enjoying being photographed and hence look somewhat deranged and oddly like Drew Barrymore, who I don't think I resemble in real life. Yeah, that's me on the right. Where did that fabulous shirt go?? Nicole is the cute one on the left.)

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Lobster. Manna from heaven? Or cockroach of the sea?

I'm in no position to judge. But my family sure is! A short vacation (or long weekend) to Maine resulted in a new-found appreciation for rainy days, fireplaces and family. And lobster. Details to follow. For now... some quick observations:

JetBlue rules. Seriously, I've never been more comfortable on a plane. So what if the flight is only an hour from NYC to Portland, ME. I'm convinced I could fly to New Zealand direct on the airline, if only they went there.

Is it only in Maine that one finds roadside "Whoopie Pies for Sale"? (Route One, just north of Bath).

Maine has more (not always great) antique stores than residents. I'm serious.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Twittering to Myself

Today I'm going to document every move I make. Not because it's interesting, that's for sure. Just for... documentary purposes. It's like... me... twittering but alone and to myself.

So. I woke up around 8, went back to bed and dreamed. Got up, recorded the dream using Google Notebook, since this piece of #!%@ computer only has MS Works (WTF?) on it, for therapist and now dream-analyst sister. Did not embellish.

Washed hair, towel dried, made oatmeal (non-instant) with my usual slice of Rice cheddar cheese melted in it. I swear you'd like it. Also made some green tea (using both the caffeinated Yogi tea and the non, which has lemongrass or something and tastes better.) Added some stevia (300 X the sweetness of sugar!).

Ate and drank listening to KEXP (Seattle) internet radio. George Monbiot, well-spoken Brit journalist discussing his book Heat: How to Stop the Planet from Burning. I loved one idea: get the city buses out of the cities and onto the highways between the suburb and urb at much more efficient speeds, reliability and convenience.

OK, I also read a bit of Esquire whilst sipping my tea (why am I receiving this magazine? actually it's amusing... a small window into the minds of men. Or minds of small men.).

Marveled a bit again at netvibes.

Great. So now I can record that I've sat on my butt for some 30 mins at the start of the glorious day. OK, tea gone, I'm going to do my 90 situps and then go poke around Manhattan. Buy a new phone (where are you, little Razr?), find some summer clothes, go to gym, meet up with C., buy some spinach, order some books, and record some more of this so-far-not-overly-exciting day.

Well, here's what I didn't do: sit-ups and gym. Hm.

Ok, I did buy Don Delillo's new book Falling Man, which I'm already 55 pages into, and which is great in his sort of understated, breezy yet weighty way. Also got a highly indulgent book on typography and that novel with the post-its on the cover (can't recall; gave to C. to carry home when we separated at 20th street -- he went home, I went to Filene's Basement, as is my wont).

Later, later, many doll-hairs later... I'm munching on Tibetan Goji berries, updating this completely unnecessary blog and noting weird confluences. To wit:

I buy a D. Dilillo book (he wrote a book called Mao). I notice that in the news someone defaced a famous image of Mao. Read more.

Ate lunch (tuna tartare for me) at Markt with C. Couldn't explain what "Markt" meant but thought of the word "telemark" - a skiing term. Then, when home, read this: Cousin of Ski Champion Bode Miller Killed After Shooting Cop, which, while sad and weird, takes place in NH, which reminds me of the Old Man in the Mountain (an iconic and now gone rock formation in New Hampshire's White Mountains), about which I wrote in my previous non-blog blog. (Sorry for linking to Fox News; it was only one on Googlenews at the time, I'm lazy, and in this case it's true news.)

Tuesday, May 8, 2007


So nice to have something catastrophic happen that isn't somehow our fault. And by "our" I mean the human race, Americans or at the very least Democrats who can't control what the Republicans do.

Per NASA: The brightest stellar explosion ever recorded may be a long-sought new type of supernova, according to observations by NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory and ground-based optical telescopes. This discovery indicates that violent explosions of extremely massive stars were relatively common in the early universe, and that a similar explosion may be ready to go off in our own galaxy.

Interesting stuff. And now for today's wish list item. Simple, elegant, Chanel.

Monday, May 7, 2007

Lunatics, Wild Winds and Tune Dispensing Pez

fabric pattern

Oh I'm in a black mood. I walked to work today and there was something wrong with the wind. Every time I headed in a southerly direction (which I pretty much have to to get where I'm going) the wind would pick up the hem of my skirt and pretty much inch it up, between my legs so that it looked like I was wearing some kind of weird shorts. The fabric (see image, right) was such that if I WERE wearing shorts, I would look like a lunatic. I spent the entire walk trying to casually pluck the skirt DOWN, which pretty much ruined my mood. On a lighter note, today's wish list item.

Saturday, May 5, 2007

Only 182 Days Left

Yes, it's almost my birthday (November) so I'm going to include a wish list item in every post for the next however many actual days until I turn (um) 35 again. Here is today's whimsical wish: a nifty little tree-branch USB memory stick. Not exactly cheap, but as you know I'm worth it. You can buy it here.

Friday, May 4, 2007

Cry Me a River

My new route to work takes me down the west side of Manhattan along the Hudson River and serves to remind me why I live here. I love rivers, I love wide rivers with historic pasts (though I guess any major body of water has some sort of "historic" past but you know what I mean). I could live in Kentucky if I were situated on a hill looking down on a river. The ocean is better, but rivers do it for me too. They put me in a state of contemplative, just-this-side-of-melancholy meditation (a good state for me).

The photo here is evidence of what must be considered progress, again, in the realm of beautification. Not much to look at now (and kind of post-apocalyptic in a cool kinda way) but this is just part of "Segment 3" of the sprucing up of the 550 acres of Hudson River park, which includes 400 acres of open water that will, according to the Friends of Hudson River Park, provide an exciting public venue for boating, touring, fishing, swimming and many other activities.

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