Friday, December 30, 2011

Shudder

There is something
S (upernatural)
A (ttractive)
T (empting)
I (nsistent)
S (tupefying)
F (ascinating)
Y (earnful)
I (nviting)
N (onsensical)
G (ratifying and overwhelming)
about gliding
one
finger down to
watch
the ripples spread,
like series of waves that CRASH
over you,
make you feel
like
drowning.
Twist your head slightly,
O-o-open
your mouth,
only to let your skin
vibrate
as skin rubs
against
skin.
He whispers
to you
"Let go."
And you can only let
the waves
rise up
and
capsize both of you,
dragging you down
in some siren-song,
curled up in a desperate embrace.
It is
S (udden)
U (nbelievable)
B (reathtaking)
L (iberating)
I (ntense)
M (agical)
E (verything he can give you for right now).


"The Kiss" by Gustav Klimt

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Shades of Gray


I'm listening to Laura Shay's "First to Fall" and it's soothing. There's a faint pitter-patter-pit-pat of rain against my window and the wind has gone from howling in frustration, to simmering in undulating disappointment.

The world, as I see it, is not simply black and white. Neither is it in gray or color. It's marbled, textured, a blend of everything we see. A single ripple on the surface of the lake results in the same reaction in the world. Ridges and lines swirl and twist, invisible hands with fingerprints that leave marks we instinctively feel in this world.

This is what it means when something is a shade of gray. It is not always disappointment. It is not always nonsense. It is not always an answer.


Image courtesy of acidcow.com

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Beautiful


I saw this piece of graffiti while I was in Montreal and I loved it. To some extent, I agree. To another, I say: If you like it, that's all that matters.





Friday, July 1, 2011

4th of July

So, the 4th is coming up. The idea of INDEPENDENCE has changed from the Founding Fathers. Now, it's no longer the Red Coats, it's the Privacy Acts that have people worried. There's no more Paul Revere on a horse, it's all about information getting out online.

Still, it's good to remember your history. The patients at the VA hospital need a little thank you from someone other than family who visit them all the time. The homeless veteran could do with a meal instead of a pitying look. There are men and women who gave up so much to defend not a nation per-say, but a belief.

Beliefs are exactly like ideas: they live on far longer than any one man or woman. And this belief is the belief of FREEDOM.

I'd like to wish everyone a Happy 4th of July. May it be filled with fireworks, punch, laughter, kids and all those things that remind you why it's good to be alive.


Image courtesy of the Madison Online Archive

Sunday, June 5, 2011

June 5th


June 5th, 2011. Sunday. It's 6:26 according to my clock, but I've learned it's a devious little jerk who changes when it suits itself.

In history, Adam Smith, economist, was born this day, as was Pete Wentz, of Fall Out Boy. Harriet Beecher Stowe began the weekly serial publication of Uncle Tom's Cabin, while Ronald Reagan died.

For me, today is the day when I mastered roasted tomatoes with butter and brie. :)

The original recipe can be found here: http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2008/07/roasted-ricotta-roma-tomatoes/

What I did differently: I used 1 and 1/4 cup brie and 1/4 butter, removed the garlic and herbs, and instead used an Italian spice mix that I got from my friendly co-op!

I made my own bread crumbs, and with the addition of some more Italian spice in them, they are glorious!

Here's a picture of the final 7. One seems to have mysteriously vanished...






Friday, May 13, 2011

Strawberry Wine

I went to the farmer's market today and it was gorgeous. Bright colors, delicious flavors, but the weather was wilting and hot.

Still I bought some strawberries, raspberries, a mini watermelon and some almonds. Yummy!

Add a little bit of a vinaigrette and you have a nice dessert!

~*~
Vinaigrette

1 part orange juice
1 part wine (I used white)
1 part champagne
1 part wine (Peach wine)
4 parts olive oil.

Combine! It's better to use two kinds of wine, especially fruit if you don't have that many fruits in your fruit salad to start off with. Smooth and cheery for a summer's day!

Sepia Tones

I bought a box the other day. Not just any box, but a faded cardboard box covered in modge-podge and lace, a modge-podge covered box filled with photographs, photographs faded and done-up in old black-and-white, contrasting shades mellowed out by sepia tones.

I don't quite remember why I bought it, or who I bought it for. I do remember looking through it, pausing at this bundle of glossy paper. There was one that just made me stop and stare. It was a woman, dressed up, standing in front of a microphone. Thin hands for a figure that fills the picture are loosely wrapped around the stand. Her lips are dark black in the color, parted as if she's just finished a line in a song, and her eyes are drawn upward and off, towards a person who isn't in the photograph. She's wearing sensible heels, sturdy soles and thick clasps.

Somehow, I feel a strong connection to this woman who I don't even know. I want to know her story, want to know where she was, why the back of the photo says "Ruth. December", who she's thinking of and why she's in ten other photographs, looking sadder and sadder as I flip through. Who was this dark-haired woman, what is this proof that one Christmas season so many years ago, she sang a song for a man who wasn't even there?

The last picture makes my heart clench and my eyes tear a little. She's in the background, watching a couple dancing. The couple is both strikingly beautiful, the type of All-American look that comes from being born with it. The man's wearing a hat, suspenders and long black-blue-maybe-charcoal pants. His shoes are far too clean, scuff marks all dressed up and only the gleam of the camera's flash let's you know that he was wearing shoes. The woman's eyes are staring at his and she's laughing, her skirt flying back, kicked up as he seems to pull her up out of a dip. Her hair's longer, pulled up in a ponytail, with a scarf hanging off the end.

And suddenly, I understand. Ruth's the one on the outside, wanting in. She fell in love with this man: James, Eric, Andrew, whoever. But he fell in love with this girl: Susie, Elle, Kathy. Her name's far too bright, new, fast-paced and her character's even shinier than Ruth can keep up with. Ruth's tradition, formal dresses, glasses of wine and perfect etiquette. This other girl, she's fast cars, cigarettes, the new glamour of Hollywood and neon lights.


Image courtesy of Liverpool Museum

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Mirepoix: Waltzes in Three

Mirepoix is a strange word, a French word. It's the stuff of soups, made of celery, carrots and onions.

Celery is for lightness. If you could capture a laugh, a warm summer day, a morning mist, that's the taste you will find.
Carrots are for sweetness. The hint of an intangible joy is in your spoon. It could make you think of a sprinkling of sugar, a hint of honey, subtle and not-overpowering.

Onions, well, everyone knows they're for the tears. Tears don't always have to be sad: they can be happy, come from frustration, or the world relief. Usually, they're for the bitter moment that comes after the sweet.

The thing is, every thing needs a balance, a rhythmic companion. And somehow, the number 3 appears in my mind. It's a logical progression: just as the soup needs a light flavor, that's sweet and salty, everything else needs support. The strongest shape is a triangle, three sides that support perfectly. A braid is a twisting of three strands (divided, they fall and break; together, they conquer). Friendship bracelets come in three words: Best Friends Forever.

A perfect waltz is just like the perfect mirepoix: one, the beginning step, the rush of exhilaration, celery; two, the middle, strong and delightful, carrots; three, the end note, a noticeable pause, onions.

Perhaps, the solution isn't to give everything of yourself to someone, but to make sure that there is always enough for the next person in your life. Give someone your laugh, the next person your heart, the one after that a tear. Give the boy after him a child, the girl after her a kiss, the friend after this a promise.

A perfect waltz comes in threes: one, da da, two la la, three ta ta. Life has its moments of stop, start, go; beginning, middle, end; slow, medium, fast. And on we go.


"The Waltz" by Auguste Renoir

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Mirepoix
  • 1 part celery
  • 1 part carrot
  • 2 parts onion
This recipe is by weight. It can be added to stocks (canned or fresh), or can be saut├ęd as a basic flavor enhancer. Enjoy!

Dream a little dream...

"The Dreaming" is a story, an Aboriginal term to describe a time when there existed nothing, when the world was blank and infinite space, emptiness... alone. It's a personal story that starts from the beginning, gives new meaning to words like "love," "laughter," "trust." The creatures that live in "The Dreaming" are different for everyone: tigers, wolves, dragons, faeries, butterflies.

This year, my dreaming has been filled with too many things, too many emotions, and too much planning.

But my life won't be like this forever. Someday, I'll look back and laugh at myself for being a silly college student who thought her worth was in grades and books.