Friday, October 03, 2008

Who says science is dull?
The Ig Nobel prizes have been awarded.

Stop presses! Fleas on dogs jump further than fleas that live on cats. String will always get tangled in knots. And something really weird about lap dancers and, well, why spoil the mystery?

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Oh the horrors!
I have a very dear, living-too-far-away friend coming to stay with us in two weeks and since he's rarely here in the Bay Area there are a lot of people he'd love to see. I'm having a few of "the group" over for a brunchy-lunchy-type gathering and I'm already freaking out.

Now there are some people who are born entertainers. (By which I do not mean Groucho Marx.) I mean Martha-esque type entertaining. Many of my friends (including The Foreigner, Finny, and the Lurker) are wonderful cooks. I, on the other hand, am not.

I come by my lack of cooking talent through genetics. My mother is a notoriously bad cook. Not only can I not cook well, I don't even know where to start in terms of what to serve. I mean I realize that my friends love me anyway and certainly aren't coming over here for the food. They're coming for a reunion. But I have to serve them something. I can't just hand them a bag of chips and a Coke and say "enjoy!"

Which leaves me wandering aimlessly through recipe sites and cookbooks. And wondering why I missed getting the chef's gene. Some people (Finny, I'm talking about you.) seem to naturally be able to imagine how food will taste. "Hey," she'll say, "let's combine home-grown tomatoes with bacon and pine nuts." And voila! she's got a yummy salad/bread/main course that looks and tastes delicious. "Hey," I'll say, "I'll follow this recipe exactly and voila! it looks and tastes like doggy poopy."

So in addition to the fact that I really (REALLY!) need to clean the house, I have a week to figure out what to cook, how to cook, and what the hell this little shiny thingy is in my utensil drawer. It's gonna we a long week...

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

CD Pick of the Week: Ayombe!
Ayombe! The Heart of Colombia's Musica Vallenata. Totally fresh and fabulous. Four types of music: puya (feat. lots of accordion), Merengue (upbeat & catchy), son (slower) and paseo (light & lively). Great performances throughout, you can’t go wrong with any track. Everything is SO good! Great notes too.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

A fascinating look into the past
Can be found at the wondrous Daily Scrapbook. It's a glorious wander through history courtesy of the website (and book) by Jessica Helfand. I want some of these for my own collection...

Monday, September 29, 2008

Celebrate a banned book
According to the American Library Association September 29-October 6th is "Banned Books Week". They have suggestions on how to celebrate, which includes a list of the 100 most frequently challenged books of 1990-2000. I'm sure you've read at least one, because titles include the Harry Potter series, Of Mice and Men, The Catcher in the Rye, James and the Giant Peach, and The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.

And, as Sarah Palin has so frighteningly illustrated, people are still trying to dictate what we can please don't take reading for granted.