kitchen_kink: (Default)
So I finally finished going through the confessional post this year; there went my week. ;) I'm still not entirely sure why I let myself get caught up in it every year. It has this incredibly compelling quality I can't define, even if I skip the parts that contain ugly drama.

The thing that struck me, though, was this. I'm usually mentioned in the confessional, if only once or twice, and so far, always favorably. But I notice that what people usually have to say is that I'm sexy (about which I cannot complain), and further, that I have some kind of untouchable/mysterious/sensual/powerful quality that makes them afraid to talk to me.

And all I can think is, really? Still? I know I don't spend as much time as I could in the company of the core group that tends to most participate in the confessional. But I feel like I am out there to a certain degree, I'm very public about who I am, and I try to be friendly when I'm not feeling too introverted or crazed. I guess it keeps surprising me that there are people who think I'm scary. The encouraging thing, I guess, is that I figure the people whom I find intimidating probably feel the same way about themselves: i.e., I shouldn't really be afraid to approach them. :)

But I guess I wish that if I were going to get mentioned, someone would say, "I love her writing," or "Her show was really good," or "She really helped me this one time." I mean, I know it's ultimately a crush meme, but somebody started this "fan letters" trend of suggesting people to say nice things about, and it was neat to see the kinds of nice things that people noticed about each other. It took such a long time in my life for me to feel as though I were seen at all; it's a very special gift to be seen accurately, and it's one of my favorite things when it happens.
kitchen_kink: (eggplant)
What does it say that in FitDay's serach results on the word "strawberry," not only are fresh strawberries not the first thing to come up, but they aren't on the list at all in three pages of results about Kellogg's cereals and weird frozen pastries and ice creams and drink powders?

(Addendum: a search on "strawberries" produced fresh raw strawberries as the first hit. Possibly what it says is that they need to fix their freakin' search engine.)
kitchen_kink: (foreboding)
I was in my local liquor store today, buying a couple of bottles of wine for the house. The owner is behind the counter but is busy on the phone ordering cigarettes, getting a cynical kick out of the candylike flavors. He gestures to another woman, who comes behind the counter, having just been outside. Taking off her coat, she releases a shiver into the warmth of the store.

"It's so cold out," I say.

"It's not cold yet, from what they're sayin'."

I offer a look of appropriate dread, as she takes my credit card. While it's processing, she takes a look at her watch and sighs.

"Long day, huh?"

"Five o'clock," she mutters.

"Well," I say, "at least it always comes."

"Unfortunately," she says, and I look at her with some surprise. "We wish our lives away," she says. "It goes so fast when you're having a good time."

I feel a certain sadness grip me as I put my credit card away. I look her in the eye as I take my bag. "Do more of what you love," I say. She laughs, not cynically. "And have a good one."
kitchen_kink: (mercenary)
It's nights like this that I'm proud to be an American. Or something.

Tonight, my beloved [livejournal.com profile] imlad and I kept to a tradition we'd been exercising for a few years. We have these friends who live in Beacon Hill, and from the rooftop of their apartment building, you get a spectacular view of Boston's fireworks display.

Now these friends are people [livejournal.com profile] imlad knew before he met me. That is, well, they're mundanes. Mind you, they're awesome mundanes. Smart, funny, interesting people, into ancient Greece and modern art, who invite people over who are usually the same sorts of mundanes. We are, in a sense, their pet freaks, and we enjoy being so, and now and then we meet people there who look like they could be pushed over the edge with a feather.

This time, though, the gathering was smaller. Our favorite couple there was now a single, the wife having split and moved to Atlanta. The cooler people we'd met in the past were absent. Our host's busybody older sister and her obnoxious husband were there. We had some chit chat and some nice food, and then headed up to the roof to await the fireworks display.

All around were the other denizens of the building, most of whom seemed to be young and annoying, the types who yell inane things like "YEAH baby! DO it!" every time a big firework explodes. And as I sat and waited for the festivities to begin, I realized a profound truth that doesn't often occur to me anymore in my life: I was bored.

I had spent the afternoon surrounded by people I know and love. My people; my community. I'm very lucky to spend so much time in their embrace, enveloped in their love, sharing food and booze and touch and watching their kids run around underfoot. I don't think I express my gratitude often enough for the fact that, essentially, I'm shielded from the world by a different, smaller world that is being created, day by day, by the awesome people who surround me.

And here I was, on a rooftop in Beacon Hill, surrounded by the kind of people who would bring a television out onto a roofdeck so as, presumably, to watch the fireworks on television and in real life at the same time.

As if to make the final point, the fireworks began. And while at first they were very lovely as always, as the show went on, it began to generate so much smoke that eventually the fireworks couldn't be seen at all. The finale was a series of degenerate booms ringing out over a cheering crowd, who were probably actually crying out their dying breaths before they asphyxiated. Even the one thing that seemed like a guaranteed good time failed us this year, the spectacle we'd come for literally lost in a puff of smoke.

We flowed down the stairs and flopped on the couch, where we watched the post-processing on the local news while we waited out the first wave of people leaving the Esplanade. After a hyper-cheery report on the just-finished fireworks display, which apparently thrilled everyone to death (maybe literally) in spite of the fact that nobody could see it, the news did an editorial piece on why people in Massachusetts are really patriotic, in spite of the fact that Massachusetts is one of the bluest states in the nation.

Let me just say that again so it sinks in.

Even though Massachusetts is a really blue state, its citizens love celebrating their patriotism!

Because we all know that liberals and Democrats hate America.

So this was the idea of the report. The substance? Showing the happy people gathered on the Esplanade in front of the Hatch Shell, bedecked with styrofoam Liberty spikes and waving the American flag, smiling empty, vapid smiles while listening to the Pops grind out Tchaikovsky for the nth time (a tune, by the way, commemorating Russia's defeat of Napoleon in 1812, not our defeat of the British) while fireworks explode over their heads (or at least that's what it sounded like). Then, showing people in other cities, protesting the government's actions! Gasp! Horrors! People who disagree with the government!

How unpatriotic. Juxtapose that with a heartwarming story about a father and son who just came home from serving in Iraq together (they're so proud), and there's your dose of news for the night.

By this point I was so depressed I started to fall asleep, so we said our goodbyes and walked out onto the street, where a sinister police helicopter was circling, shining a searchlight into the alleys below. Streetlights flashed and the sidewalks swarmed with happy patriots trying to return to their homes. Outside of the Charles MGH station, these masses stood, waiting for the armed guards to let them pass in groups into the station.

Yes, really.

On the train home, my feet aching, I stood listening to the conversations around me. A loud man behind me said, "That's your problem, you're so negative about everything. That's why I hate my family. I hate them, because they're always so negative about everything, you know?!"

Do people even listen to what comes out of their mouths?

I don't have broadcast TV at home. The local news is telling people that dissent is unpatriotic, that they should be afraid to walk the streets at night, that being an American is about war and triumph and F15 flyovers and not about what freedom actually means. The circus we go through every year at the Hatch Shell celebrates all of that, and decides that the Raging Grannies in Portland Oregon or wherever are a bunch of commies who hate America.

And a 16-year-old looking kid stands outside the closing doors of a train and says, to someone safely crammed inside the car, "I'll kill you. I swear it. If I see you around, I'll kill you." I watch his dead eyes, flickering cold blue light like TV screens, as the train pulls painfully out of the station.

Back in Davis Square we meet somebody we know almost instantly; she comments on [livejournal.com profile] imlad's kilt as we mount the escalator. On the brick-lined street, a passing kid is singing "Holiday in Cambodia."

At last we're home, and I feel again the tenuousness of my position, the baby-fine but strong filament on which I soar in love. Those threads that weave themselves over me and my loved ones, in a web that I wish weren't necessary.

But it is. Because every time I venture into the larger world I'm reminded of one of the things that depresses me, and that I so wish weren't true: the vast majority of people are sheep. Docile, stupid, reactionary, ugly, greedy, empty-eyed consumers fueled by beer and fear. They're living the American nightmare. And only a very few will awaken in their lifetimes.

As we rounded the last corner to our house, a bumper sticker on a parked car caught my eye. Incongruously but piercingly, it said only, "Sift."
kitchen_kink: (askance)
Yesterday I was having randy impulses toward random people, and last night had a very inappropriate dream about a fellow castmember.

My my, I do declare. That warm weather is starting to get to me. *fans self in a distinctly Southern fashion*
kitchen_kink: (Default)
Still making my way through the men's long program, as I spent the last week unpacking and previous one packing and moving.

Matt Savoie turned in a wonderful performance in his long program; I'm sad that he's off to law school and so we're not likely to see him again. A terribly sad thing, as I think he was one of the greatest I've seen, medals or no medals.

I'm also checking out relative newcomer Shawn Sawyer of Canada, who is incredibly flexible and energetic, and did a lot of moves previously only done by women. I find this incredibly refreshing, as a contrast to the very athletic women who try to do moves only previously done by men. I'll be looking out for him in the future.

I'm sad to say I can't get behind Yevgeny Pleshenko, whom I know turned out the gold medal winner. While his technique is impeccable, there's something cold about his style. I usually love the Russians, but somehow he doesn't move me. Watching his long prgram, all I saw was a series of admittedly incredible jumps executed perfectly, and everything else just engineered to work the system such that he would take home the gold by sheer points alone. His spins are awkward, his choreography uninteresting, and his emotion not going much beyond "intense." He's not someone I'm enjoying watch win, even with his sob story of training 1,000 miles away from his parents at age 11. I just am so much more gratified when someone wins it who is truly an artist.
kitchen_kink: (love)
I'm told that the conventional wisdom on thank-you cards after a wedding is that you're allowed to get them out to people up to a year after the wedding date.

Good thing, that, because I still have 30 to write before October 7. Can anyone say, "low-level priority"? I mean, I'm extremely thankful to my friends and family for all they did and offered for our wedding day. But writing individual thank-you notes and actually MAILING them in this day and age seems like such an incredibly chore, and always seems less important than something else I could be doing. Thank the gods I have an actual deadline.

You folks who have gotten married and did so following certain of the social codes: how long did it take you to get thank-you notes out?
kitchen_kink: (Default)
I went to YouTube and watched some Robin Cousins, some Torvill and Dean (go watch their Bolero, I mean, right now), and some Scott Hamilton. Man, the sport has come leaps and bounds, athletically speaking, in less than 30 years. In 1978, when Cousins and Hamilton were head to head at the Worlds, the men were doing single axels, and the triple lutz was the big-deal difficult jump to land. In a '94 performance of Hamilton's I just watched, where he was 36, there was commentary to the effect that he hadn't quite gotten the triple axel yet, but was hoping to become the oldest man ever to land one. By the early 90's, a few women were trying triple axels in competition, and near the turn of the century, men started landing quadruple toe loops. Watching the 2006 mens' competition, the top skaters all have quads in their programs - in combination with triples! It's completely insane. No wonder I've been feeling like there are far more falls in skating these days than there used to be - I've no doubt there are, with all of those crazy jumps. And now, with the new scoring system, scores are cumulative, so everybody's going for as many tricks as they can get. What this means is that most programs look a lot alike, and that a lot of artistry has been lost, except by the truly top people.

Overall, I have to say that in the 2006 competition, there wasn't a lot that excited me. None of the gold medalists really blew me away, and they all won because they were athletic, had decent artistry, and could skate a clean program. People like Sasha Cohen and Matt Savoie did stunning things, but these days the artistic elements count for almost nothing, and missing or falling on technical elements carries such severe penalties that there's almost no room for beauty anymore.

It's a damn shame. For a remedy, check out this.

Vosotros?

Feb. 12th, 2007 06:30 pm
kitchen_kink: (Default)
I saw Pan's Labyrinth last night, and it was every bit as enchanting and shocking and incredible as everyone had led me to believe it would be...I was absolutely thrilled with it.

It was also fun for me to listen to the gorgeous Castillian Spanish as I read the subtitles, and to see the subtle mistranslations (as i saw them) and also some bits that were untranslatable.

To wit: I never did learn the vosotros verb tense.

You see, there is a familiar 'you' tense and a formal 'you' tense. And there is, ostensibly, a familiar 'you' plural and a familiar 'you' singular. But in modern Spanish, for the most part, folks don't use the familiar plural 'you.'

But the faun addresses young Ofelia. the princess, as 'vos.' I noticed it. And I wondered.

You experienced Spanish speakers: help? Is 'vosotros' a normal way of addressing royalty? Or, child royalty? And if so, why? Certainly, 'nosotros,' or 'we,' would be expected for royalty addressing the people. So the you-plural makes sense, but if so, why the familiar and not the formal 'ustedes'?

Anyone? [livejournal.com profile] deadwinter?
kitchen_kink: (coatlicue)
So one day recently I was sitting at my computer when some HUGE flying insect buzzed with a helicopterish sound from out my skylight and then promptly disappeared. I found it, later, crawling lazily along one of my wires. It's not actually that huge; it's about an inch long, and not very fast. Nor have I ever since seen it fly. I had no IDEA what it was, and up until then, had never seen one before.

Today, while putting plastic on my bedroom windows, I found another one. And I caught heem.

Note: I couldn't get a very good picture. He's kinda brown-speckled, and his back legs are like a cricket's or grasshopper's, kinda. But he hasn't made any chirping noises, and he's smaller than a cricket. I think.



Confused, am I.



[Poll #921955]

EDITED TO ADD: It's a Western Conifer Seed Bug! Thanks, frobz and all. I have taken him from his Gorgonzola container with the holes poked in the top and placed him outside near a pine tree. Hopefully he will bury himself; more likely he will die, or find his way back into the house, so I can put him outside again. :)
kitchen_kink: (goofy)
I was obsessed with this band in high school, and haven't listened to them in any concentrated way in years. I'd forgotten how much joy Johnny Marr's jangly guitar work and Morrissey's hilariously moribund lyrics bring to my life. I also underestimated the degree to which I still retain all of the lyrics to the album Louder Than Bombs, which is now running in its entirety. A number of gems come to mind as I hear it again, but my probable favorite just went by in the song, "Shakespear's Sister," amid a wall of British new wave sound:

I thought that if you had an acoustic guitar
then it meant that you were
a protest singer.

Oh, I can smile about it now,
but at the time it was terrible
kitchen_kink: (energy)
I'm a lapsed Catholic; it's true. And right now I identify more as pagan than anything else; hell, I even have a regular spiritual practice. But one thing that has been so gratifying to me during this transition from agnostico-vague-spiritualist to practicing pagan is the reclaiming of Christmas.

At last, I know what it is that has been so appealing to me about the holiday for all these years. I've watched as mainstream (read: Christian) America has tried, in vain, to "put the Christ back in Christmas," only to see it grow more inflated and commercial every year. It doesn't work, because the holiday has been stolen: it was holly and ivy long before it was a baby in a manger, and the more it tries to be forced into that mold, the more the perverted pagan traditions pop out, devoid of all spiritual meaning, and devolve into an orgy of spending and inflatable plastic Santas. I've watched some of my Jewish friends recoil in disgust at the way the holiday takes over the hearts, minds, and front yards of their neighborhoods, and listened to people complain about everything from false holiday cheer to endless Christmas music to yet another painful few days with their families, pretending to be happy while tensions seethe.

And yet, through all of this, I have always loved the smell of Christmas (cinnamon, pine, baking meats and pies, snow, and woodsmoke), the specials on TV, the caroling (only in the past couple of years have I actually begun participating in a door-to-door tradition), the tree with its white lights and beautiful ornaments (I decorated mine tonight), egg nog, gifts, the Rockefeller Center tree lighting ceremony, the sound of bells in shop windows, and the Mormon God-damned Taber-fucking-nacle Choir.

And I've realized over the last few years that all - not one, not two, but all - of the things I love about Christmas aren't about Christmas at all.

They're about Yule.

Yes, the winter solstice. It was fun tonight singing a gorgeous arrangement of "The Holly and the Ivy" - a pagan carol if ever there was one - and seeing the way it had been warped into a Jesus carol. The words of the first verse and the chorus are as follows:

The holly and the ivy,
When they are both full grown
Of all the trees that are in the wood
The holly bears the crown

O the rising of the sun
And the running of the deer
The playing of the merry organ
Sweet singing of the choir

Come on, now. "The rising of the sun and the running of the deer"? This is a solstice song! But in the next verse it goes on to compare the attributes of the holly to Mary's bearing of Jesus. Whatever.

In any case, there are many, many, many beautiful carols that celebrate the birth of Christ. And many, many more that celebrate Christmas as a general time of love, peace, and good will toward men. And a few that are left over from them pre-Christian times. Deck the Hall with boughs of holly, and all that jazz.

The point, though, is that the silent night, holy night that I love has very little, if anything, to do with the birth of the king of the Jews. And further: that's okay with me. I don't need the Christ in Christmas. Because before it was Christmas, it was very much celebrated in the ways that I find most rewarding about the season: with holly, pine boughs, lights held together against the darkness of winter, feasting and drinking with friends, song, presents, and fellowship.

Happy holidays, everyone, whatever you celebrate. I'll be off enjoying my Yule vigil in front of a 15-hour roaring fire on Thursday night, celebrating Christmas with my biofamily on the 25th, and feasting with my dearest friends here in Boston on New Year's Eve. May you all be so multiply blessed.
kitchen_kink: (grammar)
To me, it seems the process of writing a long piece is a bit like the process of putting together a patchwork quilt, then trying to turn it into a knitted blanket or woven tapestry. I start, usually, not so much with an idea as with a character and a voice. I start at the ostensible beginning, writing in the voice of the character or in third person around the character, describing her, building her, giving her surroundings, interests, relatinoships, place. Then I decide what situation to put her in. More often than not, other characters arise, situations develop, and more than one story starts to wind through the narrative. And before I know it, I have one storyline about a regular girl in love, and another about that same regular girl being dragged into an epic struggle of supernatural intrigue. It's all stitched together like a quilt made of little bursts of story, anecdote, description and dialogue, and then I need to tear apart all the little patches into threads and weave them together.

It's this last part that's so unbearably difficult for me, that I think is the reason I often start long projects and don't finish them. I go back and look at them, analyze them, enjoy the fact that some passages (sometimes, as now, even many passages) make me laugh aloud or move me, but I can't stand the idea of tearing them apart, filling in the blank spaces, rearranging them to make them work as a coherent narrative. Sometimes I think I should stick to short stories, but often when I try it they come out long, like mini-novellas that want expansion.

Ah well. Back to work.
kitchen_kink: (grammar)
Seen on a reshelving cart at the Newton Public Library:

Title: New Worlds to Conquer
Author: Halliburton
kitchen_kink: (sparkly doubt)
If you read me with any regularity, you know that I believe in some things and engage in some practices that the atheists and skeptics among you tend to magnanimously chuckle at and call "woo-woo." For you guys, as well as for the more woo-woo-inclined on my friends list, I offer this interview of Rob Breszny, writer of the column called Free Will Astrology. I generally skip down to his horoscopes, which are usually funny and filled with good insight, but today I chose to read a little of his column, and this Q&A session sums up, to a great degree, the way I see the world. Do read and enjoy.

***


Q & A

QUESTION. How can an intelligent, educated person possibly believe astrology has any merit?

ROB. Many of the debunkers who're responsible for trying to discredit astrology have done no research on the subject. They haven't read smart astrological philosophers like Dane Rudhyar, don't know that seminal astronomer Johannes Kepler was a skilled astrologer, and aren't aware that eminent psychologist C.G. Jung cast horoscopes and believed that "astrology represents the summation of all the psychological knowledge
of antiquity." The closest approach the fraudulent "skeptics" usually make to the ancient art is to glance at a tabloid horoscope column. To match their carelessness, I might make a drive-by of a strip mall and declare that the profession of architecture is shallow and debased.

That's one reason why these ill-informed "skeptics" spread so many ignorant lies. For instance, they say that astrologers think the stars and planets emit invisible beams that affect people's lives. The truth is, most Western astrologers don't believe any such thing.


QUESTION. Because you pack your column with doses of humor and wild imagery, some people think you don't take astrology seriously.

ROB. On the contrary, I think this proves how much respect I have for astrology--I mean REAL astrology. Not astrology as a superstitious belief system that generates boring predictions in dead language about trivial events that only our neurotic egos are obsessed with; but rather astrology as a mytho-poetic symbol system that expands your
imagination about the big cycles of your life, liberates you from the literalistic trance that the daily grind tends to trap you in, and opens you up to the understanding that you're much more beautiful and full of potential than you've been taught to believe.


QUESTION. You have said that you believe in astrology "about 80 percent." What's up with the other 20 percent?

ROB. I use the same 80-20 approach with every belief system I love and benefit from: science, psychology, feminism, and various religious traditions like Buddhism and Christianity and paganism. I take what's useful from each, but am not so deluded as to think that any single system is the holy grail that the physicists call the "Theory of
Everything." Unconditional, unskeptical faith is the path of the fanatic and fundamentalist, and I aspire to be a rowdy philosophical anarchist, aflame with objectivity and committed to the truth that the truth is always mutating.


QUESTION. But don't you risk playing the same role the tabloid astrologers do: enticing people to take on a superstitious approach to life and seducing them into believing their fate is determined by supernatural forces beyond the influence of their willpower?

ROB. I call what I do predicting the present, not forecasting the future. My goal is to awaken my readers to the hidden agendas, unconscious forces, and long-term cycles at work in their lives so that they can respond to the totality of what's happening instead of to mere appearances. I want to be a friendly shocker who helps unleash their imaginations, giving them the power to create their destinies with the same liberated fertility that great artists summon to forge their masterpieces.


QUESTION. How do you write your column? Do you use actual astrological data, or just go into a trance and let your imagination run wild?

ROB. I draw up a weekly chart for the sun, moon, and major aspects of each sign. It's the framework within which I improvise. The artistic part of the work is harder to pin down. One of my guiding principles, though, is to treat each sign's horoscope as a personal love letter--to speak as intimately about the mysteries of the moment as if I were addressing a close friend.

Where do my inspirations come from? Dreams, letters from readers, overheard conversations, meditation, lots of reading in a wide variety of texts both sacred and profane, and the intensive cultivation of my own receptivity. I also rely on fact-finding missions I call whirlygigs. During these, I steep myself with the intention of attracting lessons I don't know I need, then meander through the world at random, going places I've never been and striking up conversations with strangers with whom I
apparently have nothing in common.


QUESTION. You confuse me in the way that you praise rational thought and the scientific method, yet reserve the right to believe in astrology, angels, miracles, and other woo-woo.

ROB. Thousands of amazing, inexplicable, and even supernatural events occur every day. And yet most are unreported by the media. The few that are cited are ridiculed. Why? Here's one possible reason: The people most likely to believe in wonders and marvels are superstitious, uneducated, and prone to having a blind, literalist faith in their religions' myths. Those who are least likely to believe in wonders and marvels are skilled at analytical thought, well-educated, and yet prone to having a blind,
literalist faith in the ideology of materialism, which dogmatically asserts
that the universe consists entirely of things that can be perceived by the five human senses or detected by instruments that scientists have thus far invented.

The media is largely composed of people from the second group. It's virtually impossible for them to admit to the possibility of events that elude the rational mind's explanations, let alone experience them. If anyone from this group manages to escape peer pressure and cultivate a receptivity to the miraculous, it's because they have successfully fought against being demoralized by the unsophisticated way wonders and
marvels are framed by the first group.

I try to be immune to the double-barreled ignorance. When I behold astonishing synchronicities and numinous breakthroughs that seem to violate natural law, I'm willing to consider the possibility that my understanding of natural law is too narrow. And yet I also refrain from lapsing into irrational gullibility; I actively seek mundane explanations for apparent miracles.


QUESTION. Can you sum up your approach to seeing the world?

ROB. My outlook combines the rigorous objectivity of a scientist, the "beginner's mind" of Zen Buddhism, and the compassionate friendliness of the Dalai Lama. I blend a scrupulously dispassionate curiosity with a skepticism driven by expansiveness, not spleen.

To pull this off, I have to be willing to regularly suspend my theories about the way the world works. I accept with good humor the possibility that what I've learned in the past may not be a reliable guide to understanding the fresh phenomenon that's right in front of me. I'm suspicious of my biases, even the rational and benevolent ones. I open my heart as I strip away the interpretations that my emotions might be inclined to impose.

"Before we can receive the unbiased truth about anything," wrote my teacher Ann Davies, "we have to be ready to ignore what we would like to be true."

At the same time, I don't want to turn into a hard-ass, poker-faced robot. I keep my feelings moist and receptive. I remember my natural affection for all of creation. I enjoy the power of tender sympathy as it drives me to probe for the unimaginable revelations of every new moment. "Before we can receive the entire truth about anything," said Ann Davies, "we have to love it."



-from www.freewillastrology.com
kitchen_kink: (Default)
I find I can't even think about this conflict between Israel and Hezbollah without wanting to cry, scream or tear my hair out. Or all of those things. Perhaps also rip W a new one. But what else is new.

The only think I've been able to focus on is the disparate panoply of pronunciations for one of the key players in this war. In fact, thinking about that keeps me just a little bit sane during the continuous barrage of news from NPR and the BBC.

So, forgive me if this seems flippant. But seriously:

[Poll #784507]
kitchen_kink: (meditative)
Yesterday, when I was coming out of a hotel with a friend, I realized I had to validate parking inside. She offered to go in and do it, and when she emerged, she had a validated parking pass, my change, and a warm chocolate chip cookie of which she offered me a piece. It was a policy of the hotel's to give a cookie to guests; it was also the perfect thing at the right time.

Today, when I picked up [livejournal.com profile] imlad's mother from the airport for yet another of the seemingly endless series of dentist's appointments, she gave me the chocolate chip cookie she'd gotten on the plane. I stuck it in my pocket for later.

I'm bleeding today, crampy, tired and a little grouchy, and when I went to Baker's Best, the excellent cafe in Newton where I tend to sit during these dentist's visits, it was too late to get a hot sandwich from the grill. The brash and charming young manager, with his broad Massachusetts accent, commiserated, understood my strong desire for a tuna melt, but couldn't give me one. I must have looked so pathetic that he gave me - you guessed it - a free chocolate chip cookie.

Things could be worse.
kitchen_kink: (sparkly doubt)
On the wall at the Diesel is an ad for Lily's Cleaning Service.

The graphic on the ad is a very nice photograph...of an iris.

*facepalm*
kitchen_kink: (arguing)
I just did the 8 Hunks of Hannukah thing, and it was an interesting exercise if for nothing else than figuring out what I needed to see in order to think a guy was attractive without being able to talk to him.

Things I apparently like:
Pretty boys - I succumbed most times, whether they seemed smart and interesting or not
Bearish guys who look interesting
Guys who seem really zany
Guys who poke fun at the process of having sexy pics taken of them
Bald guys with goatees
Guys with babies
Guys shown doing something that's important to them
[livejournal.com profile] regyt. Good god, woman.

Things I can do without:
Guys who look mean
Guys who are pretty but don't seem to have anything else going on (except [livejournal.com profile] dirtstar...I mean come ON.)
Guys who look like gangstas
Guys who look like frat boys
Guys whose face I can't see in the picture
Guys who are dogs or cats
Guys who go overboard with the SCA-type shots
Guys who really are just a bit too burly
Guys who have only one picture in which they look very effeminate without actually being pretty
Guys who put too much emphasis on showing their bare bits

And some of them...I can't even put my finger on. It was just like, he struck me, or he didn't.

I didn't bother with the 12 Babes of Christmas thing, even though I got nominated for it. But hey, reverse exploitation? Let's GO! But seriously...is this just about physical looks? Other folks who've voted - what's your criteria been? More and more I find it hard to find someone attractive unless I can talk to them. Sometimes, though, a picture can capture something interesting about a person. For the most part, that was my main criterion. Except for the pretty boys. It might be time to admit I have a problem.
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In China Fair today, Guy1 and Guy2 are lackadasically manning the front counter.

Guy1: Between the two of us, we almost make up one entire human being.

Guy2: We're better when we're not hung over, I promise.

Guy1: Y'know tomorrow? I'm gonna quit and go work at a bed store.

Guy2: That'd be great advertising for them. See, it really works!

***

I learned in yoga on Wednesday that the Sanskrit word for "cow" is (at least phonetically) "gomu."

***

On NPR, they were interviewing a woman who hosted the Discovery Channel show Adventure Divas was studying women travel/adventurers throughout the world. A retiree called in from the mouth of the Panama Canal, where she was at sea with her husband, as she had been for several months now. She was listing the ways it had been exciting so far, and the list included the casual sentence, "We were boarded by pirates near Colombia, and we fended them off with pepper spray."

Boarded by pirates! Fear not, loyal LJers: pirates apparently still exist. But I can't say much for their heartiness these days (arr, me hearties) if they can be driven off their booty by a couple of seniors with mace.

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dietrich

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