Thursday, January 27, 2011

justin vernon making me cry, ladies,

gave some product recommendations here. if you haven't heard of it yet, birchbox is amazing. for a mere $10 a month you get good sized samples of products that the editors there tested and decided they liked, so it's not just any old junk. curated samples. awesome. little presents once a month? even better. goddamn my crappy post office that i can't ever get anything shipped to me because someone steals it, or i'd buy into this in a heartbeat. i'm still trying to get the mail people to deliver my new yorkers. just a magazine!
maybe it's the weather but i've been listening to a lot of melancholy stuff lately. bon iver, adele. i am digging sufjan's newest each time i make it through the album. andrew bird. all lullabys these folks. i mean, a LOT of bon iver. i think if i ever met justin vernon i'm not sure i'd get out any words to tell him how deepy touched i am by his music. i think i might very well walk right up to him and do something embarassing and, i dunno, start crying. actually, that is EXACTLY what i'd do. just weep like a weird, sad lady.
speaking of embarassing myself! for the hairpin. on making up dances to paula abdul songs and on flashing.
and speaking of lady...all the kids in southeast asia called me lady. "lady, you wanna buy my postcards? where you live? albany is the capital of new york!" lady lady lady. and i guess i am. a lady, that is. i understand that i'm 30 but i don't really feel like a woman all the time. maybe it's because i'm often just as confused about things as i was when i was in high school. except for that the fine lines are going to start showing up around my eyes any minute. justy and i are going to a grownup brunch on sunday. i keep calling it that, even though, yes, i'm actually an adult myself. but this is at an older, refined couple's place. a place so fancy that i can't even try to bring wine because their cabinet is probably full of lafite and what would i show up with? some $40 something that they'd cook with? life is confusing sometimes, guys.
i have a new new year's resolution. the folks at joseph leonard were keeping track of theirs, which were all variations having to do with internet porn (stop watching it, start directing it, star in it, etc.) and then everyone agreed they want to learn french. which i actually do. but my real, honest to god resolution is to stop reading internet recaps of shows that i don't watch, or have any intention of watching. this is a thing i do. i know an alarming amount about the real housewives of beverly hills for someone who doesn't have a t.v. and even if she did have t.v., wouldn't have cable.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


a few clips:
the amazing-looking trailer for the bill cunningham documentary. i still can't believe colin and justin made it into his styles section for the jazz-age weekend. theme: suspenders!
colin and i hit locanda verde's second annual trufflepalooza last night. we got the prime deuce in the far back of the diningoom, the best, and my favorite table in the whole place. too bad he's gay, otherwise it'd have been a perfect date-night table. the gnocchi won the night for me. and i wasn't expecting much from the citrus tiramisu but holy hell, was that shit good. and, how's this for some white whine: i do think i prefer a white truffle over a black truffle but the whole experience of those dinners is festive and decadent at the same time. rock on andrew carmellini! (if you're reading this, i may try to hunt you down for a story for AOL shortly, if you're interested!)
oh, yeah, i'm writing for AOL now. and they pay. hallelujah.
we're booked for nicaragua. we're staying on a farm with a private chauffeur and a private chef and we have a private infinity pool. i mean, insanity. for $400 for the week. it's about a 5 minute drive from the beaches at san juan del sur but with our own chauffeur, who the f cares?! and it'll be warm and the beer will be cheap and hopefully we won't get shaken down for too much money by the cops in nicaragua on the way from managua.
watching the SOTU tonight with azi and the kids from WNYC. may have some snarky twittering to do, follow it here:
told a little story for the hairpin today. paula abdul, i love your crazy face!
my schedule is becoming manic. everyone is moving or having babies or birthdays. it's a mess. chili fest this weekend!

Monday, January 10, 2011


i worry when i get e-mails that go something like, "david needs our help with a video. save the 21st."
the boys have been at it for the past couple months, making and curating videos over here.
in the last week i've my schedules for january and february have completely filled up. my year is filling up. i have five weddings this year. i have two 30th birthadays that require significant travel. it makes me want to drop everything and go into hiding somewhere in vietnam so i can eat my pho for breakfast in peace.
"i don't look in a microscope when i flip the chicken." - jose andres on why he doesn't use the phrase molecular gastronomy. cute bit about how he makes up words that he thinks are english but his staff doesn't correct him when the words aren't actually english. and also about hiding asparagus from alice waters when it's not local.

booked tickets to nicaragua for feb. used miles since i'm phasing out american airlines. got first class seats round trip for 45K? how is that even possible? i don't know! it's crazy! i'll take it!

modern family: james marsden, a pippin reference, and mitch being an asshole over word usage (i'm mitch! i'm a judgey asshole!). LOVE SO MUCH. jokes about gay marriage. who isn't watching this show? what's your excuse?
vowed to stop eating bread then got invited to a "breakfast for dinner" supper club dinner where fried chicken and waffles will be served. and cheese and sausage dumplings. so obviously i'm going. just don't ask how my stomach is doing the next day. the sacrifices i make for culinary explorations!
did a radio interview over here about food and food writing. i talk too much and don't answer his questions until i've already talked in circles for 5 minutes. basically, i'm better at doing interviews than giving them.

Sunday, January 09, 2011


Liberals want to save the planet. Save the animals. Help the poor. Help the elderly. Educate our children and help them to eat well. Accept those who are different from us. Give equal opportunities for all. Liberals want peace. Liberals think the life of a woman is just as important as the life of any fetus. Liberals may be accused of being weak, pansies, hippies, elitist, tree-huggers. Liberals get angry when the healthcare plan they wanted isn't strong enough or when discrimination laws are not repealed speedily enough. Liberals understand that many people who own them cannot be trusted with guns. 

There will be those who try to paint Jared Loughner as leftist because a high school friend said he used to be one years ago. Loughner is sick. He is delusional. Many of his online writings are conspiracy-filled and sound like they came direct from Glenn Beck. He may not have been a right-winger but we know a few things: 1.) He owned a gun 2.) He didn't trust the government 3.) Spoke of gold as a safety net 4.) He's not opposed to violence. 

Republicans know exactly what they're doing when they stoke fear into the hearts of people not smart enough to know the difference between the truth and the GOP dog whistled lies, subtle racism, hatred defended by religion, government involvement when it's in their interests (abortion) but not when it isn't (taxes). 

Jared Loughner might not have been a republican but he's definitely picked up some of their "facts" along the way. All it takes is one crazy person to take it too far, to become too scared, to feel "the man" is out to get him, to hear the mystifyingly influential Sarah Palin to command people not to "retreat" but to "reload" before some sicko thinks he's justified to accomplish his goal by horrifically violent means. This kid is an idiot, he is an outcast, he was impressionable and he was looking for other people to tell him why and how he'd been wronged. Unfortunately, he had a lot of GOPers to help him figure that out. Anti-government, angry, armed and dangerous. Why do I feel like that describes way too many people than is comfortable?

Assassinations center around those who are advocating or protecting something bigger than themselves. Basic truths. Those who want freedom, equality, peace. 

Martin Luther King, John F. Kennedy, Abraham Lincoln, Robert Kennedy, Malcom X, John Lennon, George Tiller.

Conservatives aren't ever going to stop the hate and nastiness. It's a game they're good at, one they've had a long time to perfect. One they know is effective because the liberals are too fucking haughty to dignify half their shit with a response. There's nothing stopping the Glenn Beck nutcase express or Sarah Palin delusion central members from continuing to take things way too far. Not when they think their "leaders" would approve. 

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

dfw, jco, et. al.

Q: The thing about Andre Agassi looking like a Port Authority whore—

DFW: —I don't know—

Q: —didn't run in the original.

DFW: I think Esquire, Esqiure did leave a couple of those in, and I remember my mom, you know, reading that and just, kind of, her eyes being very wide the next time she saw me. There was something about Brooke Shields looking like somebody you'd masturbate to a picture of but not have sex with, that was really one of those four-in-the-morning, 15-cup-of-coffee-really, if I'd been in my right mind, I wouldn't have put it in the final draft, but I did. And then Esquire, I remember, left it in. Being Esquire. You know, wanting to create as much unpleasantness as possible. So.

Q: Maybe if you'd emphasized that it was not in an unattractive way. Which is sort of a hard thing to picture.


DFW: Actually the first draft of that did have that, and the editor pointed out that not only did this waste words, but it looked like I was trying to have my cake and eat it too. That I was trying to tell an unkind truth but somehow give her a neck rub at the same time. So it got cut.


Q: But you actually did want to have your cake and eat it too. Not in a bad way.

DFW: I'm unabashed, I think, in wanting to have my cake and eat it too.

there was an essay in last week's nyer by joyce carol oates about the last week of her life with her huband. i've always loved her. she was the reason i ever started dating my college boyfriend, we bonded over our mutual love for her work. and she and her husband were gloriously in love until he died suddenly of pneumonia (and complicating infections), on a night when he'd been looking better and she'd left the hospital to get some rest. this essay just punched me in the gut, left me so winded that i felt crumpled inside for hours afterwards. she wanted to die, there was no life left for her. i wanted to die. as i toted my laundry back to my apartment the whole world felt so dark. i'm not selling this piece (or maybe i am) but you should read it anyway. she has a trillin-like level of love for her husband but it's just so much more personal. it broke my heart.
between her and DFW, there isn't much more that could make me feel more inadequate as a writer, that's for sure. maybe i need to pick up my borges just to rub it in a bit more.
re: prop 8, the 9th circuit did exactly what everyone thought they should do. standing isn't something a circuit court deals with unless they have to (and it's hard to think of there being a lot of fights about standings these days, it's not the most complex legal issue) and, really, nobody who challenged seemed to have standing at all so there you go.
choire sicha is finishing his novel. he procrastinates here and i love it. the site itself is bullocks, pointless, just like a few others out there i've been meaning to do a roundup on (oh, but if you hang out with enough of the tech/media kids: lock, rex, rachel, dennis, et. al., there's no way to do any honest assessment without pissing someone off. last thing you want is for them you hate on you the next time you see them at a party. UGH, social constraints). but choire! he's charming. and funny. and interesting. and i adore him. even though he's really into cats.

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

i mean, i can't even

neil gaiman and amanda palmer had an improvised wedding at the house of ayelet waldman and michael chabon whilst jason webley officiated and daniel handler (a.k.a. lemony snicket) played accordion. DEAD. if that doesn't sound like the merriest, most literary, insanely brainy, amazing kind of celebration, i don't know what would. oh, to be a fly on that wall, or better yet, a friend to folks like that.
esquire's Chris Jones is amazing, this list is brilliant. (sufjan is on it, enough said.)
another two of my favorite things: josh groban and kanye west tweets!
my darling joseph leonard is back open. new years resolutions among staff and regulars were, "learn french" and variations on internet porn, "stop watching," "watch more," "make internet porn," "star in internet porn." (okay, that last one might have been mine. i specified that it must be french internet porn, which is totally classier than the american junk, or so i assume.)