Wednesday, June 29, 2011

the past and future.

What I made for dinner a few nights ago:

Asparagus, artichoke, and shiitake risotto from Smitten Kitchen.

What I'm going to make for breakfast tomorrow:

Blueberry yogurt multigrain pancakes, also from Smitten Kitchen.

(On a side note, I have about a million cookbooks but somehow I keep end up on this particular cooking blog. Absolutely everything I've made from here has been delicious.)

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

missy higgins.

via treehugger.

The first time I heard of this Australian lovely was from my roommate at band camp (for some reason I always feel like that should be one word, like, bandcamp. And yes, go ahead and make your jokes. I play the flute, too. Har har.). I liked her then but embarrassingly enough, couldn't really understand the accent.

Then she came up on my Pandora station last year and, with my mysteriously vastly improved accent-translating capability, I loved her!

Please enjoy this little sampling :) It's a live recording of her song "Forgive Me." Just start at 2:50.

Monday, June 27, 2011

the summer reading list, final copy.

A People's History, Howard Zinn
Celebration of Discipline, Richard Foster
House of Leaves, Mark Z. Danielewski
Everything is Illuminated, Jonathan Safron Foer
Custer Died for Your Sins, Vine Deloria
On the Road, Jack Kerouac
Stranger Things Happen, Kelly Link

I'm mostly done with A People's History--only around 200 pages left to go, which out of 800 pages feels like being on the last mile of a marathon, and I'm taking a break for a little while because I'm up to the really recent history and it's very taxing and depressing. Hopefully I can crash through House of Leaves while I'm on vacation with the fam. Celebration of Discipline will be a week's read, I think. Then I'm going to try to read Stranger Things and Custer Died together, because the latter will probably also be a tough read, as soon as I get back. Then, Everything is Illuminated and On the Road have got to be finished before August, leaving just enough time for me to power through Dostoevsky's The Brothers Karamazov, which is required reading for Oregon.


Some that I still want to read, that may substitute for whichever books I can't get out of the library:
State of Wonder
Infinite Jest
One Hundred Years of Solitude
The Things They Carried
Interpreter of Maladies

Friday, June 24, 2011

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

a smattering of news.

More food troubles...

More education woes...

Interesting... but how much is advertising responsible for our crappy eating habits, and how much is actually our own fault?

"Made in America"...This makes me want to dance (jobs for people who need them!) and cry (less jobs for even poorer people elsewhere! So much patriotism!) and scream (are jobs the ultimate, even best answer to poverty? How much are we responsible for "assisting" our fellow humans abroad? How does outsourcing affect our relations and image not with the governments, but with the everyday people of other countries? More questions ahhhhhy71%H4tbvb@650ubvnkkkkkkkba%*khop[pjjsbnah!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) all at the same time.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011


One blog I follow, Design*Sponge, has this feature where the writer suggests home decor and fashion that look like they could be from a particular movie. Today's edition used one of my favorite movies.

Since we're so cool, sometimes my friends and I discuss which Jane Austen man we'd most like to marry. And at least two of them have claimed that Mr. Knightley is, without question, the perfect man. Emma's got some pretty serious 'tude, and he can totally handle it.

Myself, I prefer Mr. Darcy. I know, I know. Cliche. But I am Elizabeth Bennett. (I KNOW. Every girl thinks she's Elizabeth. But I am. Seriously.)

I sense new posting potential...

Thursday, June 16, 2011

rock on!

Most likely my wedding will be more traditional than this (although hopefully still unconventional! There's got to be SOME way to be a nonconformist in this world), but it's still awesome.

See that one bridesmaid's hair?!

The other photos keep coming out too small, for some reason, so you'll have to check out the other pictures (especially the bridesmaids' tights!) over at the originating site, stylemepretty.

how i heart you, npr.

Talk of the Nation's "Five Tips for Making Travel More Meaningful."

Of course, there's a lot that could be argued about travel-- the pros and cons of tourism, the motivations, the issues that arise from intercultural dialogue. But in my limited experience, getting out of the US has been incredibly eye-opening, and I pray hope dream want to MUST do it again.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

book party!

via little green notebook.

hello, i'm melissa, and i'm wait, don't shut the door...

Yesterday was my observation day at the non-profit where I've been hoping to get a job.

Note: it wasn't until after I had filled out an application that I realized the job would entail me going door to door begging for contributions to their anti-hydrofracking campaign.

But, I figured some non-profit work would be helpful on a resume. And it would be a good learning experience. Surely some doors slammed in my face would help me get over my fear of rejection.

And you know what? The day wasn't so bad. I mean, for some people it would have absolutely sucked. But I often like things that other people think suck.

The best part was the characters.

For example, there were two other campaigners who were quintessential hipsters. I'm talking ninja-turtle t-shirts, beards, bacon band-aids, and coke bottle glasses. (While we we driving to our canvassing site, one of them pulled over the side of the road and peed right next to someone's house. His words: "Their effing cat kept staring at me.")

Then there was the other guy who was observing, like me. Poor kid was terrified and couldn't stay on topic. He wound up in an hour-long conversation with someone he was supposed to talk to for ninety seconds, couldn't finish his route, and then only got five bucks out of it.

And of course, there were the people I was asking for money. These interesting and varied individuals included:

--an old man with scary tight eyes and American flag hanging in his doorway who looked like he wanted to throttle me when I said the words "environmental and consumer advocacy"
--a woman who practices transcendental meditation who invited my trainer and I in for a steak dinner, then offered to adopt us (I declined. My trainer said, "if it involves steak.")
--a woman with a friendly, naked five year old and a baby named Spot.

After I had observed my trainer for a little while, he dropped me off in a neighborhood so I could practice on my own. And if I say so myself, I didn't do so badly: $65 in two hours.

Unfortunately, this job isn't going to work out, because it's so far away and I don't have my own car.

But it was definitely worth that one day.

Friday, June 10, 2011

baby names.

When I was 10 or 11, I just knew that I was going to name my future daughter Chelsea Joy. Something about the name Chelsea just felt delicious to say (you're welcome, college-friend Chels.) Obviously, my tastes have changed since elementary school. But although kids are still a loooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooong way off, I still spend my off-hours day dreaming about baby names.

Is that weird? Do you find yourself fantasizing about the future? I've got my wedding, home decor, daily menus, wardrobe, and child-rearing practices all figured out... for now.

  • Violet
  • Sophia
  • Fiona
  • Gemma
  • Gray
  • Audrey
  • Clementine
  • Aurelia
  • Posy
  • Lucia (pronounced loo-sha)
  • Penelope
  • Morgan
  • Helen
  • Roe
  • Noah
  • Gray
  • Emerson
  • Toby
  • Edmund
  • Lucas
  • Milo
  • Jacob
  • Atticus
  • Connor
  • Levi
  • Colby
  • Jude
  • Patrick
On an unrelated note, just because:
This is Dorm Life.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

oreos, olallieberries, and dark chocolate.

Once again, I learned something new.

An olallieberry (who came up with that piece of work name?!?) is a cross between a blackberry and a raspberry.

And when combined with Oreos, makes possibly THE most gorgeous cake I've ever seen.

Yeah. Those are gold flecks.

Recipe available here.

I must, I must, I MUST make this this summer!! And also Joy the Baker's Vegan Chocolate Avocado cake (the avocado makes it super moist.)

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

what the frack is fracking?

I didn't know this until six hours ago, but apparently it's a process of mining natural gas that's been causing all kinds of hullabaloo in New York.

I figure it might be a good idea to find out more details before I go in to interview for a job campaigning for its demise.

Earth Justice
Earth Times

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

never have i ever...

...felt more silly, poser-ish, and otherwise unfashionable then when I stepped off a Megabus in front of FIT.

I was wearing black yoga pants and a big maroon cable-knit grandpa pullover, and my hair was wisping (more like straggling) out of my so-tight-I-look-bald french braid. I think I was also wearing running shoes.

I shouldered my bright purple backpack, pretending I was totally too cool for the other Megabus passengers, and squinted up to figure out where the heck I was. That's when I saw them.

Gorgeous fashion students. Amazon-tall. Stabbing the sidewalk in four inch heels, garbed in luxurious dark fabrics, with perfect skin and stylishly un-styled hair, carrying bolts of other expensive looking fabric. I shrank down as I dialed my dad's number and wiped some sandwich crumbs off my sweater, whisper-begging, "Which way to the 1 train?" while they strode past me, laughing. But not at me. I hope.

Don't get me wrong: I like fashion, and usually I put a lot of effort into my outfits. (My old roommate used to make fun of me because I would spend an hour trying on different combinations just to go to class.) But you can just tell when clothes are expensive. The fabrics are smoother, the colors look more purposeful and less accidentally washed-out, the cuts are more precise, the drapes more dignified. Or maybe it's just the wearers' confidence. In any case, my clothes do not look like that. Probably never will.

Alas, Sartorialist. Your beautiful women are less personally threatening, but their style will always be just as unattainable.