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October 2, 2009

Relaxing Times and Places

Café Angelique is a coffee and pastry cafe in the Village on Bleecker Street with great atmosphere and edibles.

There are all different kinds of comfort food. This place's atmosphere definitely adds to the comfort of the food for me. It's pricey and worth it. Perfect for a quick break in a busy day or a rest note between the main stanzas of life.

February 21, 2009

Other Wordly Bathrooms

Famous for its bathrooms in a city full of places with gorgeous bathrooms, Bar 89 deserves its notoriety.

Bar 89

Located at 89 Mercer Street, the decor is nice and the food is pleasant but the bathrooms are like nothing you have ever seen. Except my friend in Paris just told me there is something there on the Rue de Madeleine that sounds similar. Kissing cousin cities Paris and New York deserve to each have one of these.  There were no photos of the bathrooms and a photo couldn't replicate the experience anyway. Besides a beautifully lit spacious sink area, the stall doors appear transparent but when someone goes in, they become magically opaque and a hologram-like word "occupied" appears with a simple latch of the door -- or perhaps it's sensitive to just walking inside. Masterful design work illustrating how great design creates new experiences and opens up your imagination, playfulness and sense of wonder.

December 21, 2008

Fine Fare

Gallo Nero means black rooster, the name of a wine bar on 44th street off 9th avenue with a huge assortment of wines. And speaking of color, the red of the Pinot Noir we had — deep and bright both — reminded me of an art film where a main focus is on a certain red that keeps appearing.

Gallo Nero wine bar

Offering a refined rustic atmosphere, the food menu is amazing. I had thickly piled masses of vegetables and cheese on thick crusty bread that they called bruschetta but which is unlike any you've had before — and a beautiful salad. The service was superb.

December 19, 2008

8,000 Great Places to Go

Unassuming on the outside, enchanting on the inside, La Paella in the East Village features a tapas menu to make your mouth water. 

La Paella

The food is pretty much perfect. I love the decor, down to the menu design, which has a beautifully distressed thick cover on it. The place is small and intimate, perfect for a date. 

December 2, 2008

Chestnuts Roasting

chestnutsChestnuts have started showing up this time of year. They are so delicious, with their steaming insides. They are so stubborn too, with their thick shells that defy opening unless you are willing to endure some finger pain (worth it). I've had them from New York street vendors forever and also had them from a Paris street vendor — equally wonderful. They are one of those small things that make the changing of seasons fun.

 

October 4, 2008

Play with Your Food

For the past couple of years, I've gotten a small calendar titled Play with Your Food, with fantastic food creatures created by Joost Eiffers and Saxton Freymann. 

Play with Your Food

Looking at October's artwork today, which is giraffes made out of bananas, I was charmed once more. When I looked the calendar up online, I found out that these two creative wackos have written books that have sold over a million copies. They deserve their success; their work is hilarious, original and beautiful.

September 28, 2008

New York Places to Fall Into

New York's Hi Life bar/restaurant has two locations: one on the upper west side at 83rd and Amsterdam and one on the upper east side at 78th and Second.

Hi Life

I had dinner at the upper east side one the other night. The menu is an odd but delicious mixture of sushi and assorted things from diverse cuisines. My memory is that the upper west side branch was styled more like a 1920s joint but the east side location is just a decent neighborhood spot. Tons of places that look good right nearby too. 

September 4, 2008

Bringing the Indoors Out

Yet another open air bar graces The Delancey on New York's Lower East Side.

The Delancey

Named for the street on which it resides, this palm-tree festooned hangout is welcoming. This isn't a vast city view like some of the other spots recently cited on this blog; the bar is about three flights up from ground level. The lovely night air filtered in on this yet again perfect temperature evening and a good time was had by all. Tucked away in this now thriving neighborhood, this spot is definitely recommended.

August 20, 2008

Mojitos and Mosquitos

This summer has been filled with mojitos and mosquitos.

Delicious Mojitos I'd like to keep the mojito part and lose the mosquito part — no surprise there. I'd heard of mojitos before — they're strong — but hadn't really sampled them. The best ones I've had so far are pineapple mojito concoctions made at the expensive bar at the Soho Grand Hotel, where the NY chapter of the Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA) meets for our local briefings. At $14 a pop, they better be good — and they are!

Strong and flavorful, biting and soothing both. Yum.

August 19, 2008

Enough Suffices

Appetites and Satisfaction — as humans, we all have appetites for life's bounty.

Candy Curls by Will CottonWhether it be food, money, sex, power, control or some other pursuit with big draw, we all struggle with the right mixture of hanging on and letting go, giving in and resisting, taking and receiving. This wrestling is more and less profound depending on the topic and risks involved. And people play mind games with themselves about these things on a regular basis.

 


Contemporary realistic painting, “Candy Curls” by Will Cotton

Philosophers like Sokrates and Plato were grappling with these concepts among others; the challenge is intrinsic to man and womankind. I've always been intrigued with what makes a happy life. What is that perfect balance of things that combine to bring real satisfaction. And as one becomes smarter, one's tastes, goals, wishes and challenges presumably also become more refined.

Enough suffices or enough is sufficient is a phrase that comes to mind. I heard this first in college and it captured my attention as the simplest response to these questions. I believe this simple phrase eloquently sums up these big struggles and challenges and is the key to much happiness. Discipline and order are the paths to a bigger satisfaction than indulgence and immersion. It can be a very hard lesson but can bring the satisfaction of the ages once embraced.

August 16, 2008

Reliable Upper West Side Dining

Henry's is a restaurant on the Upper West Side of Manhattan that residents rely on for delicious food, calm ambiance and gracious service.

Henry's on the Upper West Side Henry's is the right mixture of formal and informal, always pretty but fine for a casual pop-in. I went there for the first time in over a year for a business dinner tonight and it brought back warm memories and was as satisfying as ever. Henry's possesses that magic mixture that most restaurants would kill for, just the right combination of elegance and informality that make it a staple for the neighborhood. And in a neighborhood like New York's Upper West Side, where establishments come and go like subway stops, it's a small miracle to stay successful for nine years, as they have.

August 9, 2008

Sorbet with a Kick

Ever heard of sorbet infused with wine?

Sorbet with Wine

Wine Cellar Sorbet is available in six flavors and I sampled a few. They were all good but my favorite was the Riesling. The sorbet doesn't contain enough wine to get you tipsy. An original idea for a party. Best part of the deal? The black cat logo, I'd say.

August 2, 2008

Balance

In the part of Brooklyn known as South Slope sits a fantastic restaurant called Applewood.

Applewood in Brooklyn Applewood offers a delicious menu; prices are the steep side of “regular” but are worth it for a treat. Nestled on 11th street between 7th and 8th avenues, the decor looks like an intelligent East Hampton place while the food is more refined still.

My friend and I went here the other night and had a great time. We talked about Park Slope and South Slope in Brooklyn sporting constantly opening and closing venues.

He always loved to go out; I preferred to stay in; now I've been going out more and he's been staying in. It made me think how many times things take cyclical turns. We often seem to need to go in extreme directions first before learning to strike a harmonious balance like a cultured menu.

July 29, 2008

Well-Designed Groceries

Trader Joe's is loved by many. I found it last December when I had a party and needed great food without spending a fortune.

Trader Joe's fruit floesTrader Joe's is also cute. They understand marketing and put forth a whimsical version of old fashioned 1800s advertising art as their style (see left).

Their food has improved my nutrition. As a vegetarian (who does eat fish), there is lots from which to choose, all at great prices. I love their frozen edamame, better than what I've gotten elsewhere. Their cheese selection is vast; they have great fish — frozen, smoked etc. Fruits and vegetables, while not farmer's market fresh, are very good. They carry endive, one of my favorites that is hard to find. Their decaf coffee is the best. For desserts, light Fruit Floes, similar to what's pictured at left, are refreshing. For a party this weekend, I was asked to bring chocolate so I grabbed boxes of inventive chocolate treats with peanut butter fillings, with almonds, with coconut, all priced so that you can afford more than usual.

There are other fantastic markets throughout the city but they are much more expensive. Fairway is a runner up and a great store. Why don't more places follow in Trader Joe's footsteps (they say they “cut out the middle man” and bring food directly to the customer) — but at least we've got Joe.  

July 26, 2008

The King of Spices

Black pepper has been dubbed the king of spices.

Black Pepper, the King of Spices

Above: black, white and green peppercorns are the fruit of the piper nigrum vine from the world's equatorial regions

Black pepper makes a simple salad perky, a light fish dish intriguing and pasta delectable. Won over by black pepper because it adds so much flavor to food, I asked my friend Paulie, a knowledgeable and good cook, to tell me a little bit about it.

Because pepper can be stored for years without losing flavor, it gained its extra rank and status as king of spices. Pepper was so precious in ancient times that it was used as money to pay taxes, tributes, dowries and rent. It was weighed like gold and used as a common medium of exchange. In A.D. 410, when Rome was captured, 3,000 pounds of pepper were demanded as ransom. Current principal pepper exporters are India, Indonesia, Brazil and Malaysia.

July 12, 2008

Spicy Music & Hot Dinner

On the corner of Houston & Allen Streets on NYC's Lower East Side (to call this neighborhood booming is an understatement) sits the tiny restaurant called Oliva, featuring spicy music and a delicious unusual menu from the Basque region.

Oliva Restaurant

Musician and friend, Colette Michaan, flutist extraordinaire, with a specialty in Latin music, plays there with a group called Mo' Guajiro on Wednesday nights from 8:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. and I had a great time at her gig this week. Colette forewarned me that the place can get really crowded, steamy and noisy, which it did. The music was excellent with the happy minstrels jammed into the corner producing good sound anyway. As I love to dance, I got to shake my booty plenty with some super nice Latin guys I met and it was tons o' fun. No, there is no dance floor. The bartender gave the three of us a shot of something that tasted innocent and of honey. I'm not a shot type of girl but I did one for the team and it was delish. This is nyc alive and well: a tiny little joint with sublime food, tasty music and a unique atmosphere.

June 30, 2008

Symphonic Tableware

Iridescent tableware in transcendent hues helps makes dining an art form.

Gorgeously colored iridescent dinnerware

Pieces above are by artists Diane Bonciolini and Gregg Mesmer and are available through The Artful Home. The “unity in diversity” approach to the colors and textures appears to be at work in this collage of tableware. I've always thought of the best art as needing to work the way a symphony is structured, with a theme and variations. You set the theme, then amend it, play with it, move it around and the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Works in so many areas of life but then you knew that life is a symphony.

June 17, 2008

Exceptions

For what do you make an exception?

A flavor you abhor but in the right recipe is perfection. A color you don't like but in the right outfit is startlingly beautiful. A friend who says rude things but you know you can count on them in a crisis. A clunky rhyme that sounds just right. A song that's bad taste but makes you happy. A junkie movie that's your favorite. A beautiful person's face or body with a big nose, uneven eyebrows, unruly hair, big butt or other seemingly out of proportion feature that is in fact just what makes them original and beautiful.

Olives and Peanut Butter

Pesto sauce makes my day but I'm just as passionately opposed to olives gone solo

Exceptions are part of life's perfect imperfection, like syncopated rhythms in music (a momentary contradiction of the prevailing meter or pulse); the unexpected that can make something good into something great — God's touch, the inexplicable. We need order to make sense out of chaos. Systems and order make great ideas and advances possible. Quantum physics is just a system. And just as nature defies her own rules, it is our nature to sometimes make exceptions within our carefully thought-through and valuable systems — and in so doing, realize our perfect imperfection.

Color Addict Bloggy Bonus

Super simple pesto and unusual sage pesto recipes. 

 

June 1, 2008

Alchemical Edibles

Three excellent movies all carry themes surrounding the magical properties of food, yet all three are extremely different.

Like Water for Chocolate movie

Like Water for Chocolate has fairytale aspects in pictorial style and script. The story is of a young couple who fall in love as children: Tita and Pedro. Tita's mother won't let her marry because as the youngest daughter, her destiny is to take care of her mother for life, an odd family tradition. So the man marries her sister to be near her (I know, I know but it's a story and a good one). Their lives go on and there's lots of magic involved, in her cooking and all around. This is a funny and deeply touching movie about life's anguish and passions. (In Spanish with subtitles)

Babette's Feast great movie

Babette's Feast is an adaptation from Isak Dinesen's beautiful short story. This is a tale of sacrifice, simple lives and the meaning of choices, which culminates in a meal that represents everything good life has to offer. The acting is superb. One of my favorite movies ever. (in Danish with subtitles)

Simply Irresistible magical food movie

Simply Irresistible is a likable lighter romance about a young woman who is losing the restaurant left to her by her brilliant chef mother. When the clutzy cook starts to put emotions into her food, everything changes. It's a cute comedy but the concept of putting passion into your work is the same as in the other two films mentioned.

Most people enjoy great food; the notion (or in this case, potion) of big feelings transforming recipes is a nice one that engenders “food for thought.”

May 28, 2008

The Jewish Cheesecake gods Dig In

Some people might say that

New York = Cheesecake.

To the Kosher Giftbox, resource for delectable gift-giving, upcoming Jewish holiday

Shavu'ot = Cheesecake.

Yummy cheesecakes at Kosher Giftbox

Incredible cheesecakes from the Kosher Giftbox in Westport, CT

June 9th and 10th (the date moves around according to the Jewish calendar) is this year's Shavu'ot, which commemorates harvesting of the first fruits and the giving of the Torah to the Jews at Mount Sinai. It is customary to eat a dairy meal during Shavu'ot. Good excuse for cheesecake, says the Kosher Giftbox, whose decadent cheesecake options range from tried and true original New York cheesecake to amaretto, chocolate ganache, brownie encrusted and caramel and pecans with chocolate. Wow. — I'm farshtopt just talking about it.

May 5, 2008

Happy Cinco de Mayo

Today is Cinco de Mayo or the fifth of May in Spanish, a day of celebration.

Mexican food

Officially, the holiday commemorates the victory of the Mexican militia over the French army at The Battle of Puebla in 1862. In reality, in my part of the world, it's an excuse to celebrate and eat Mexican food. A group of my friends and I went to an early outside festival on Sunday (the 4th) in Peekskill and had Mexican food at Ruben's Mexican Café, as well as at the outside fair. There was much merriment, music, food and fun, although the restaurant was strained way past capacity. The food was mostly great with one odd exception being the nachos. The guacamole was fantastic. The day turned out to be beautiful despite a week-long prediction of rain. We got to spend more time at the Flat Iron Gallery which was, as before, inspiring.

April 19, 2008

Happy Passover

Tonight at sundown starts the week-long celebration of Passover for those of the Jewish faith.

PassoverThrough the magic of online resources, I found the Kosher Gift Box, located in Westport, Connecticut. They offer delicious gifts for Jewish holidays (you don't have to be Jewish to enjoy them) and fun other items too, such as their Passover Box of Questions. I've been told it's a Jewish trait to question things in general; the questions in this gift box are intelligent and provocative, to take seriously or with which to have fun. Check out their chocolate-covered matzoh (currently sold out so no link!) — yummmmm. Here's wishing all my friends (and enemies too, if I have any), Jewish and of other persuasions, a great new season. May you all achieve happiness and prosper this emerging spring.

April 15, 2008

Cat's Not Out of the Bag

Autumn took to recycling shopping bags yesterday by using them as tents, sleeping caves and evening gowns.

Cat's in the Bag

Aren't kitties clever? So resourceful, so pretty, so silly. They are endless fun. 

 

April 14, 2008

In Praise of Edamame

Delicious and pretty edamame (sometimes incorrectly spelled edamane) is a Japanese vegetable that's soybeans in pods.

Delicious and Beautiful Edamame

Edamame contains fiber, protein, vitamins and minerals in high numbers. It's lots of fun to eat too, as you pop out the feisty beans from their pods. I've had it a few times. Once was at an Asian fusion restaurant in Manhattan and it was superbly prepared, with spicy, salty outsides that enhanced the beans as you worked them into your gob. Then they're also irresistible in a crispy snack from Trader Joe's. The simple at-home way to prepare them is just to boil water, plunk them in, add a little salt, bring back to a boil and cook for five minutes. They're yummy hot or cold, very low in calories, very good for you, very satisfying and very GREEN.

April 12, 2008

I'm a Little Teapot

These graceful little teapots by HuesNBrews come in a variety of sizes, styles and colors and reminded me and my friends of beautiful housewares by Russell Wright from the 1930s.

Great Tea Pots by HuesNBrews

In person, there's a slightly antique quality to the ceramic as well as the Deco-ish design. The above pots hold tea for two but these come in a few sizes. The coolest thing about these — and other similar designs that can be found lately — is the easy-to-use removable strainer. The strainer sits neatly inside the top and makes using tea leaves a breeze. It also makes the brewing process simple since you can remove the tea leaves after two–five minutes, the recommended amount of time to not over-brew your tea, which varies based on the type of tea being brewed (black, green, oolong, white or herbal).

Caffeine Reduction Tip 

You can make caffeine-reduced tea by steeping for 30 seconds, discarding the liquid and re-steeping for the recommended amount of time. This in-the-pot strainer makes that easy to do. I got mine at the Silver Tips Tea Room in Tarrytown, mentioned a few entries ago, a very relaxing place to spend time. Really nice designs.

March 24, 2008

Tea Time in Tarrytown

Tarrytown is one of the pretty towns on the banks of the Hudson. I used to have fun driving there for sessions with a music hypnotherapist. I adore singing and sing with my own jazz band but have serious issues with performance anxiety. The hypnotherapy was really just relaxation therapy and it was soothing but didn't solve my issues completely. However, I loved the drive to and from historic Tarrytown.

Tarrytown, New York

Last week, I had the treat of another trip to Tarrytown to the Silver Tips Tea Room, an unassuming restaurant with great food and countless tea varieties. My sister made the suggestion that we meet there because it's around half way between where she and I live. The day was sunny and crisp, the drive as much fun as I remember, the food delicious and the company warm and welcoming. My sister has a new line of gorgeous original jewelry she showed me, about which I am very excited. I will be taking photos and will entice you with some of her great designs. Afternoon tea with a sympathetic companion is a delicious brew.

February 21, 2008

Workaholic — Enjoying the Remnants

I've been a workaholic lately (five or six weeks now), which I assume if it goes on too long is bad like any other over-indulgence. However, at least this one has the benefit of leading to getting a lot done.

Some of the "remnants" with which I have managed to sustain myself
L to R: ancient eggs, canned black beans and chips (high protein), brussel sprouts

Why food pictures, you may ask? Understandable. Well, during this odd time of intense work focus, I have gone many days, if not weeks, eating whatever was around in the house. And I don't mind telling you that whatever is around in this house could be pretty dicey — like we're talking rubber bands and shopping bags. So therefore, it is not without a bit of pride that I present these photos of the scraps with which I have managed to sally forth (is that correct English?). Okay, the last one of brussel sprouts was bought so it doesn't really count but I was proud of steaming them so I included them. (They are very filling and, indeed, fattening, doused with butter, salt and pepper — yum.) The others, though, the eggs and the black beans with chips were salvaged from the depths of my cabinets, of dubious date origin, to be sure and I am elated to say that I have not suffered food poisoning episodes or any ill effects as a result.

I write this solely as a confession to my own oddities that strike me as relatively harmless and that have, in this particular instance, saved me bucket loads of grocery cash, while sustaining me through an odd time in my life. Sally forth now you, good friends.

P.S. I love taking pictures of food I've cooked because it's a rare occurrence. And I admit to getting the idea from a Queen Latifah movie I loved (Last Holiday), where she was an aspiring chef who took snapshots of her meals. It's great to capture them in time when they're going down your gullet in a few moments.

October 7, 2007

The Good Life

"The good life" is a phrase that intrigues me. It gets my imagination going. What do you think the "good life" is? I think it's many things, both material and immaterial and striking a delicate balance in focus on both. On the material level, to me, it connotes gorgeous luxury (because there's an aspect of indulgence implied) objects that serve their purpose well.

Salviati Wine GlassesSalviati Blue and Green Glasses

Two lines of luscious stemware and drinkware by Salviati — left to right, water and wine glasses in their Fenice grouping in blue/green and orange/black combinations plus highballs (tall) and old fashioned (short) glasses in their Stringa offering — work together well

Good design should enhance your life. Glasses should fit well in your hand, feel smooth and satisfying on your lips and allow the beverage(s) for which they are intended to breathe or maintain their flavor as best as possible. There is both a scientific and an artistic element to this undertaking, as people will always have differing sensibilities — and that's as it should be in a rich and varied world. Still, designers who create objects that delight our senses are to be applauded. Thank God for the "good life!"

August 24, 2007

In Vino Veritas

In wine, there is truth — translated from Latin. What a provocative statement.

Katie Recommends Some Great Summer Wines

If wine is a truth serum, that's one more reason to like it, as far as I'm concerned. Truth is the greatest seducer of all. It's time to list some great wines I've been enjoying that are reasonably priced. Here is my short list from this summer, not in any particular order:

1. Ona, Syrah, Chile, 2005 — about $18 — BUY IT
2. Avalon, Cabernet Sauvignon, California, 2004 — about $10 — BUY IT
3. Armador, Odfjell Carmenere, Chile, 2004 — about $8 — a bargain — BUY IT
4. Duckorn Vineyards, Merlot, California, 2004 — about $50 — expensive — BUY IT
5. Montecillo, Crianza, Spain, 2002 — about $12 — BUY IT
6. Huntington, Petite Syrah, California, 2005 — about $15 — BUY IT
7. One other one I have to get the name of — about $13

Red wines all, these nectars will transport you to a place of tranquil well-being without wiping out your bank account while you're away (except the Duck Horn, which is more expensive). These elixirs are so good, they deserve mention. The "good life" has to include some culinary indulgences.

August 16, 2007

Colorful Interior Life

My design career has headed in the direction of interior design recently.

Interior Design

This is a photograph of my gallery / hallway design in my last apartment in Manhattan. My designs are drenched in color, with plenty of open space and beautiful textures, such as Murano glass lamps with ceiling medallions (available from many architectural and hardware resources) and wrought iron details (the flower stand here is from the Gramercy Park Flower Shop).

For those who are interested, the paint-flecked slotted doors attached to the kitchen entry were found in an antique store in New Jersey. The blue over-painted small armoire is from Chester, New Jersey, an abundant antiquing town. The small stool is an Eames classic, available from Design Within Reach. The large mirror is a great value at Pottery Barn. The small lamp is from an antique store with a new shade. The small edge of a corner table you see was designed by me to fit in the corner of my previous apartment's kitchen to make more counter space. The rug is by Susan Sargent, who helped inspire my own rug design collection.

November 23, 2005

Thanksgiving Color

Thanksgiving is pretty much orange and shades of brown, with a little green thrown in. The orange is a leftover from Halloween pumpkins, not to mention delicious pumpkin pie and sweet potatoes devoured on this day.



How do you think certain holidays attain their color status? Christmas is red and green and we accept that. Never mind that most people would agree that red and green is one of the only unappealing color combinations there is. I think that's part of the success; the shock of the combination makes you take notice and sets the decorations apart from everyday imagery. Beautiful leafy fall combos also spill over into Thanksgiving imagery; there are nice table decorations in the shapes of leaves. Pilgrim buckles are the strongest holdover from that heritage and can still be found decorating shoes and hats, although I find them a bit clunky. Clunk has its place, though, I admit.

At any rate, Happy Thanksgiving. It's always appropriate to give thanks for the many wondrous things in our lives, despite fear, difficulties and struggle. A cozy holiday to us all.

November 6, 2005

The Color of Salsa

Salsa is a colorful Latin dance style that came into its own in my native New York City. It's a fiery but orderly dance that lets you cut loose and shine on the dance floor.

Eddie Torres is often considered the father of modern Salsa. Much of the order is thanks to him, since he formally documented steps (known as shines) and turns. He danced with the famous Latin musician, Tito Puente, who, incidentally, has a restaurant here on City Island. Eddie‘s dancers were at one time called the Tito Puente dancers.

It is my good fortune to be taking Salsa lessons with my boyfriend, David, at Morocco‘s Dance Studio with Danny Ramirez and Cindy Osorio (contact Danny or Cindy for info), amazingly great teachers. They take you through steps at a pace that allows you to learn without confusion. You also switch partners frequently, a technique that enhances the learning process. Their method is called “On 2.” “On 2” refers to the beat on which you step in this Eddie Torres-influenced system. You emphasize the second beat and this is key to proper technique and style.


Artwork, l to r, by Constructivists Lissitzky and Malevich

What color do you think Salsa is? You'll see lots of red and black in Salsa imagery and clothing. But I see it as a fiery orange or fuchsia. Interestingly, David has instinctively worn an orange shirt to class a couple of times. He must be seeing the same colors in this art form. I feel the orange impulse because it's definitely hot and red means many other things to me. Despite much great use of red in design, for instance, with Constructivist artwork, to me, red doesn't have the passion of either orange or fuchsia. Those colors talk to me more. Whatever color this dance conjurs up for you, I recommend giving it a whirl. It'll open your spirit, is good for your body, a ton of fun and is a civilized way to meet people.

November 4, 2005

On Death and Living

A new theory has hatched in my head. It is that when someone dies, they may invade the living in interesting ways. This is a new twist on leaving your mark. My mom died in 2001. She was and is an original, refreshing, bright, loving presence. We had a lot of girlfriend fun but not, perhaps, the kind many women would think of. Not, for instance, shopping. While my mom taught me much about taste and detail, she was a bit of a slob, to use her own description. She was the original earth mama. That wound its way into a healthy attitude towards physical health and an unselfconscious attitude towards more superficial aspects of life. Don't get me wrong; she could drive you nuts too, like most people. But she had many unique and amazingly great traits. She was a writer. Over the last couple of years, remarkable words she would have used regularly pop into my head. They are not words I would use. And they are not slang; they are rich, descriptive, educated language.


Here's a new one. Over the last couple of weeks, I have developed a craving for a crunchy flatbread that is the sort of cracker my mother adored. Now, I always liked these too but this is much more intense. It makes me wonder if she is mischievously channeling her enjoyment of these treats through me. I mean, they are incredible! I cannot help but think of her.

When people we love die, I've heard some say that it's the tangible, down-to-earth things about the person they miss the most. That makes sense because that's what's gone. So here is an odd way in which someone's individual specificity has reappeared. Can‘t help noticing it.