Monthly Archives: November 2007

it’s the little things

I have been studying for the gmat recently (which explains the dearth of posts), so I’ve been getting good use out of my trusty mechanical pencil. It’s an unassuming cheap, rubberized grip pencil, and I love it. I love that I don’t have to carry a pencil sharpener. I love that I can retract the lead so I don’t find stray pencil marks. I love that the lead tracts and retracts with a satisfying click. It’s a simple pencil and it makes me happy.

So it was with much sadness recently when my pencil both ran out of lead and eraser. I’ve been scrabbling by, writing on an angle to not push to too-short lead back into the body, repositioning the eraser in minute amounts so it doesn’t fall out. Yesterday was extremely sad when both of these methods failed and I had to borrow a sub-standard generic mechanical pencil with the twist top. It’s really jarring to do math with a different pencil, it’s wrong somehow.

Today I went to Walgreens and bought some lead. They didn’t have the eraser refills. I then went to Utrecht across the street and bought the eraser, and some lead (it was cheaper than Walgreens! Hooray for a tiny bargain!). Now my pencil is refilled and is happy. I am happy.  The math? Still not happy.


evidence of my fabulous cameraphone picture taking abilities


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birthday bagel blogginess

Today is Mark’s birthday. Even though we are not celebrating for a few more weeks (nobody is around on thanksgiving weekend, and Mark will be gone for the next 2 weeks), I wanted to do something special on the actual day. I knew that he loves bagels with lox and cream cheese, and other than when we go to Saul’s, he doesn’t have them that often. I had recently seen Smitten Kitchen make her own bagels, so I decided to try it.


You start the dough at least one day before you want to cook the bagels. I could go into a jewish spiel about slaving over the stove, but I will benice and save you from my dramatics. It wasn’t really slaving, what with having a bread machine that can knead the (really stiff) dough, and it was fun making the bagel shapes. Putting them in the fridge overnight was such. hard. work.


Here are the bagels this morning, boiling in a bath of water, baking soda, and molasses (I didn’t have malt syrup):



floaty bagely goodness



Here are the just boiled bagels, topped with crushed garlic and salt, ready to go into the oven:


bagels boiled

the garlic is not that neon, but still yummy


Here is the final plating, with cream cheese (oh how I miss Temp-tee whipped cream cheese! Nancy’s Organic is so not as good) and lox:


bagels done

boiled, baked, bagely goodness


They were quite good, especially considering I used bread flour instead of super high gluten flour, active dry yeast instead of instant yeast, and brown sugar instead of malt syrup. The first batch did not have a super crispy crust, but the second batch, which was in the oven for longer, did. Mmmm! And Mark agrees.

Happy Undisclosed Age’th Birthday! I love you!


Filed under cookery


I am not participating in nablopomo. I’m sure you figured that out already.

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disgruntled wednesday

Today started out so well. When I got out of the Bart, I was greeted by sun and warm air. Hooray! To celebrate (really, to be lazy), I decided to go to Starbucks to feed my addiction: an eggs-florentine sandwich. So. Frickin. Good. I hadn’t been there in a while as I was bringing my own breakfast (advance planning? crazy!). I walk in – there is a short line. Score! I place my order. The barista tells me that they don’t have eggs-florentine. Slight bummer, as they have run out before, so I wasn’t surprised. Then another barista tells me they replaced the eggs-florentine sandwich with a spinach wrap. Excuse me? You discontinued the best breakfast sandwich on the planet? Why? Why would you do such a thing? And to add insult to injury, you replaced it with a wrap? Wraps are so 1995! And they’re nasty to boot. The only “wrap” that is good is anything wrapped in a mexican tortilla – and those aren’t wraps! Who can I beat up over there? I’m a shareholder, I own one-bajillionth of the company, they should pay attention to me!


To make me feel better, my friend Laila showed me a picture of one of the baby goats she saw this weekend when she visited a goat farm.


baby goat

can I adopt one?


So. Frickin. Cute. Grrrr, Starbucks. But, Baby Goat! Still, grrrrrrrrrr, starbucks.

Ok, I am skiving pilates and going for a brisk walk for lunch. It’s so pretty outside! To pretty to waste doing exercise. Don’t look at me that way – I did pilates on monday and yoga on tuesday. I’ve been good. really. Baby goat!


Filed under cookery, monstrosities

crespina, my second home

According to this article in the NYTimes, Crespina, Italy, is now the sister city to my dear hometown of Staten Island, NY. I cannot begin to tell you how funny that is to me. Apparently officials in Crespina were so thrilled that they threw a parade. I wonder if they had met the SI delegation when they first came up with the idea. (Imagine a nasal voice)”Yo, I tink dis town of Crespina would be an ideal vacation spot. Lets get dem to be sistah cities so we can go for free. Oh, an’ dey would trow in some grape advice, too. For free!” Cause that’s just what the ole’ forgotten borough needs: a vineyard. Just to confuse it with Lon Geyeland more!


Oh Crespina, how like Staten Island you are!

Also in the times this week, a “travel” article about Staten Island. Shouldn’t they have waited until the vineyard is set up? Ah well. Like all food guides to SI, they list Denino’s as a top pizzeria. Have they actually been? I’ve been many times – it’s crap. Ok, maybe not the worst pizza around, but there are so many better options. The only reason to go to Denino’s for dinner is because you plan on going to Ralph’s for dessert. And really, you should not even do that. Just go to Ralph’s. Trust me. If you want seriously good pizza on Staten Island, head to Joe and Pat’s. Trust me.

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happy knitiversary!

Today is not my actual one-year knitiversary. But it’s close enough. Yes, one year and one week ago I was in Seattle with my friend Carey and asked her how to knit, in exchange for teaching her how to make marble magnets. It took me a month or two to get the hang of it (it took Carey less than one evening to get the hang of marble magnetting), but I can proudly claim that I have still not finished a scarf! What I have finished instead are a multitude of hats. It’s the lazy, obviously. I haven’t touched the CDR since I took it off the needles (note to self: if one is a lazy crafter, then one should not remove project from needles before project is complete, especially if said project is large), my ribbed hat has languished since I took up the hallowig (deadline knitting not conducive to working on other projects. Also, everything i was working on was ribbed so I got very sick of it. Also also it hasn’t been hat weather), and those knit robots have been sitting in the knitting bag since kingdom come (obviously the robots are planning to take over the world and I am doing my part to resist them). Regardless of the lack of many fo’s, I am still proud of myself. I did not forsee doing a sweater, let along a cabled sweater, or a pair of lace socks, or a knitted wig! Go me! Cake and presents welcome.

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