Monthly Archives: April 2014

Fictitious Dishes

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I love food. This is no secret. I enjoy cooking it, I enjoy eating it, and I even enjoy looking at it. I also enjoy books and reading, as we also know. Perhaps that’s why I find Dinah Fried’s new book particularly captivating.

She created and then photographed meals from various books, and the result is fascinating. She set the meals up as they would have looked to the characters in the books (the top photo here is from Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, and the bottom photo is from To Kill a Mockingbird). Holden Caulfield’s cheese sandwich and malted are presented on a diner counter.

Fried feels that the act of reading fiction is a sensory experience. For this book, she focused on one sensory element from fiction – food – and created visuals to match.

“Each photograph does not represent a meal exactly as it was explained by the author, rather aims to capture the essence of each novel, evoking the setting and atmosphere of the narrative. Whether or not you’ve read the books, these images should provide a little taste of what they’re like.” (Huffington Post)

Kind of cool, right? The Huffington Post link has a slideshow with more meals pictured, and you can also peek inside the book on Amazon. Worth a look!

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90 Days

I have what I like to call Veruca Salt Syndrome. You know, the girl from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory* who doesn’t care how, she wants it now? Yeah, that’s me. I have a hard time understanding why when I decide I want something I can’t have it right away (i.e. house hunting). I enjoy instant gratification. I want those shoes, I buy those shoes. Very little effort is involved. So when i come up against something I want but can’t have right away, I immediately become frustrated, angry, and sink into a deep pit of despair.

It’s not a good habit. I’m working on it, honest.

It’s a habit that has also made me lazier than I am. And I’m pretty lazy to begin with. When I identify something I want but can’t have right away, or may have to put in a lot of work into getting, or just plain don’t know how to get, I get overwhelmed* and just give up all together. I’ll just stay in this crappy place, thanks, because I’m too lazy to figure out how to fix it. Or if it’s going to take longer than I thought or be more effort than I originally planned, I just end up quitting. I find myself in an endless cycle of try try try! and then give up spectacularly. It’s ding dang exhausting. For myself and for everyone I complain to.

So instead of complaining all the time, and feeling frustrated all the time, I’ve decided to do something about it.

It really all started when, as usual, I find summer approaching and I feel like a pale, jiggly, blob from a winter of staying indoors and eating ginger snaps obsessively (sooo goood). As standard for me, I immediately jumped into a 24 day cleanse, clean eating, continuing to work out at my beloved barre studio, and then burning myself out and immediately dive bombing into a plate of nachos with a side of beer. Thus getting nowhere in my battle against the bulge that is my muffin top. “Why isn’t this working?” I’d moan. “I was sooo good for like, three-ish days this week!” I’m not that stupid. I get that consistency is my problem. I know that one bad meal or a few rest days won’t make me fat and out of shape, but it’s never one bad meal or a few rest days. It’s multiple bad meals and multiple rest days.

So it was time to face the facts. What I’ve been doing isn’t working. It’s time for something new. So instead of making a grand plan for changing my body and my life as fast as possible, I’m taking a new, slower approach. I’m setting relatively small goals for myself and they working on achieving them. Slowly, one step at a time. I am trying to focus on the long game rather than an immediate payoff. It’s more of a mental shift more than anything, and I’m hopeful that it will bring a sense of clarity and peace to my life that I find myself lacking more often than not. It started as a quest to get into shape, but I can already feel it morphing into so much more.

I’ve arbitrarily set a 90 day time period for me to get this endeavor off the ground. That brings me to the end of June, essentially the start of summer, because I want to start my favorite season off in a happy and healthy place. Mentally and physically.

My goal for the month of April is consistency.

Consistently make good choices when it comes to eating, consistently work out, consistently wash my face and floss before bed (I know, I’m gross, but I never consistently do those things), consistently make the choice to feel positive and happy instead of letting negative thoughts get me down. I know we’re only 10 days in, but I’m already feeling good about this. It’s not about being perfect, just about making the best decisions I can every time I have the opportunity. Small steps that will hopefully lead to big rewards.

Also, just because that got a bit too serious for my liking, I plan on teaching myself to juggle this month. Just because I need a talent and I just recently read somewhere that literally anyone can learn to juggle. So there’s that.

 

 

*The original, not the creepy one with Johnny Depp. Sorry Johnny, I love you, but no.

*”I know you can be overwhelmed and you can be underwhelmed, but can you ever just be whelmed?” “I think you can in Europe.” Name that movie!

 

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Orphan Black

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The Internet has been telling me to watch this show for ages. I keep stumbling upon various articles saying that “Orphan Black is the best show you’re not watching” or some iteration of that.

And now I am here to tell you that Orphan Black is the best show you’re not watching.

I binge watched the entire first season this past Sunday. Actually, that might be skewing my opinion slightly, because most shows are better if you binge watch them, because you don’t have the frustrations of having to wait to see what happens or the risk of forgetting about a small tidbit of information that later in the series turns out to be a huge tidbit. Regardless, the show is really good.

Sarah Manning is a street dwelling ne’er do well who witnesses someone who looks exactly like her jump in front of a train and kill herself. Seeing this as an opportunity to at the very least rob this woman blind, Sarah assumes her identity. Only to find out she is actually one of several clones, and someone is trying to kill all of them. As you can imagine, ish gets cray.

The best part of the whole show is that one actress (Tatiana Maslany) plays the part of all the clones, each of them having wildly different personalities and even different accents. It’s freaking incredible. You forget they are all being played by the same person, she does such a good job differentiating between all of them. N came over just in time for the last two episodes and I attempted to give him a brief rundown of the series and as we’re watching a scene with three of the clones in it he says “Wait, she’s playing all these characters right now?” and I basically flew off the couch saying “YES. I KNOW. I CAN’T EVEN.” It just blows my mind.

So I’m here to add to all the other articles out there telling you that you should be watching this show. The good news is you have plenty of time to binge watch before season two premiers on April 19th.

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Grand Budapest Hotel

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N and I had ourselves a nice date night consisting of dinner and a movie this past Saturday and we went to see Grand Budapest Hotel. We’re big Wes Anderson fans (N got me into his movies when he forced me to see The Life Aquatic and I ended up liking it far more than expected) and we’d heard good things about this one, so we were really excited.

We also smuggled wine juice boxes into the theater which may or may not have had an effect on our excitement level.

Anyway, we loved it. It was hilarious and, of course, completely beautiful. The colors! Oh Wes, you know how the internet feels about your color schemes. This movie is suddenly making all those pink tiled bathrooms we keep seeing on our house hunt look really exquisite. I highly recommend this one, and I hate going to the movies.

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