Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Assholes of the Animal Kingdom

I am compiling a list. Feel free to contribute.

  1. Canada Geese. Yes, majestic. Yes, a symbol of the country I live in. And yet? Nasty, nasty little birds. Territorial in a way that you will never understand unless you experience for yourself - and territorial not in a way where they've staked out claim on a slice o' geography, but territorial in the sense in that if you come within 10 feet of them, wherever they are, they will GO AFTER YOUR EYES. Also, poop as big as your thumb.
  2. Zebras. The Colbert Report learned me this: attacking zebras have caused more deaths in zoos then traditional predators, like lions and tigers and bears combined. Why? Because when they bite you, they won't let go until you are dead. I feel that zebras need to replace bears on Colbert's Threat-Down.

Talking about tigers, you have to read this story about Boris, the Siberian Tiger transfered from Montreal to Edmonton. Poor Boris - he only speaks French. He must be so loney.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Riding Blind

Ever since I got me a new, lovely road bike, I've been riding roads that I've never, ever been on before. In the city that I live in, the line between subdivision and farmstead / hiking trail woodlands is very distinct, and very, very close.

Early this morning, before many cars took to the road, my legs and my bike took the rest of my body across that line, up into the rural wilderness. The route I took was one of the prettiest and most difficult that I've attempted so far. The roads twisted and turned and were full of hills that needed climbing, and racing down the other side at speeds I've never hit before.

There's nothing like having the wind in your face as you swoop down a narrow country road full of hairpin turns, only to hit an incline of an even steeper magnitutude, and, realizing after you've made it to the top that you successfully resisted the urge to stand while peddling to make getting up that hill easier.

Also, I passed a horse farm. Horse farm! I now wish to take dressage lessons there.

I know I'm going to pay for this morning's ride tomorrow. Hell, I'm exhausted right now, but, damn, I can ride hills!

Thursday, May 24, 2007

What Will Happen When Knut Grows Up?

Though it is inevitable, of course, I think capturing wee Knut while still wee is key. So here's the little man, by CreativeThursday, print available via her Etsy Shop.

Unrelated and random, this morning, I found myself delighted and may have clapped my hands like a goon. Why? Headed to Chicago at the end of July.

The end.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Vital and Fabulous Communications

Cracking. Up.

There Are A Number Of Reasons To Stop Eating Meat

There are a number of reasons to stop eating meat, by either cutting down, or cutting it out entirely. Here's a brand spanking new situation that I've never run across before - until today. Yes, I've lifted the below article in it's entirety. I am lazy. And don't have a subscription to the Wall Street Journal.

Source: Article via Serious Eats via The Wall Street Journal

Junk Food Fed Livestock

The growing demand for corn-based ethanol is pushing up the price of corn, causing some livestock producers to supplement their animals' diets with more affordable human food:

Dwight Hess, a cattle feedlot operator in Marietta, Pa., is located in the heart of snack country, near Hershey and Herr Foods Inc., a maker of potato chips, pretzels and snack mixes. His cattle ration consists of about 17% "candy meal," a blend of chocolate bars and large chunks of chocolate; 3% of what he calls "party mix," a blend of popcorn, pretzels, potato chips and cheese curls; 8% corn gluten; and the remainder corn and barley he grows. He says the byproducts save him about 10% on feed costs. Still, it costs him about 65 cents to put a pound on a steer, up from 42 cents last year.

No mention of how these animals taste compared to their corn-fed counterparts. [via The Food Section]

Sunday, May 20, 2007

New York, Where We Get to the Jeans

Right, where did I leave off, before falling into an exhausted heap? Dinner on Friday, no? Ah, so let's pick up there.

After polishing off an insanely pleasing spread, we walked on over to a bar on the lower east side, where a friend of Heather's was throwing a birthday party for her husband. When I finally started to fade, I headed back to my hotel with plans to meet Lauren for an Important Shopping Expedition the next day.

Saturday morning, I did my best Heather impersonation and infiltrated the Equinox Fitness at 2nd and 54th. It was a very lush fitness centre, and put my own chain to shame with the loveliness and the working equipment. On the way back to my room, I picked up a couple of bananas, some plain greek yogurt and granola at the Food Emporium, and a coffee at Pax Wholesome Foods.

Lauren and I met up late morning, and started walking all about SoHo, NoHo and the LES, through both drizzle and rain, stopping at sample sales and in a few week boutiques. I found a few jersey dresses that I would have loved to have bought at Zachary's Smile, but they were cut too big for my frame. We lunched at a sweet restaurant who's name escapes me (I remember! Say hello to Zoe Restaurant), and I dined on a layered spinach salad with shaved mushrooms, a light vinaigrette and toasted pistachios. One of the best salads that I have ever eaten, and I was sad that, even though it was as big as my head, that I tore through it so quickly. Lauren and I split up around 5PM, and I headed back into midtown, with a mission that only Barneys could fulfill.

My mission? A pair of super-dark jeans with no distressing or obnoxious pocket details. Fulfilled quite ably, by J Brand's 914 in Ink.

By the time I made my way out of Barney's, after cruising through floor after floor of designer dresses, none of which made me want to try them on, not for lack of trying to fall in love with them, it was pissing down rain in a rather unpleasant manner. And my stomach was screaming at me to put something in it. I stopped by Pax and picked up a veg wrap, and made my way, drowned like rat, back to my room. Due to the obnoxiously early Sunday morning flight that I had booked, I decided to make it an early night, and stayed in.

This morning, my 5:30 AM nodding-off while sitting in the terminal was interrupted by a gaggle of screaming children playing Nerf Football while their parents encouraged them to ham it up as they snapped pictures and drank mimosas made at the bench seating. If I hadn't already decided to not have kids, I do so think that this would've been the morning that would've pushed me over the edge.

The flight itself was uneventful, excepting the descent into Toronto. Looking out the window, I saw the most amazing thing that I have witnessed in a long, long time. The cloud-cover between 15,000 and 10,000 feet was gauzy and riddled with holes. The way the sun shone though the empty spaces and illuminated the clouds around them was absolutely startling and stunning.

And now I am home.

The end.

I Go To New York, Eat Raw and Buy Jeans

It's true, I do. But if it works, it works, no?

Friday's flight out was delayed by two hours, putting me smack-dab in the middle of drizzley rush hour traffic on the drive into Manhattan. But the frustration of it all evaporated when I met up with my friends Heather and Lauren at Pure Food and Wine. Excellent conversation and food that was vegan and raw and immensely flavourful. Who could ask for anything more?

We decided to go with the five course tasting menu, pared with a refreshing rose. For most of the courses, we all received something completely different, and I feel like almost everything that came out of the kitchen was something that I had wanted to try. So we shared every dish, and it was so, so satisfying and flavourful, I can't even begin to tell you. Wanna see it? Here it goes.

Amouse Bouche:

  • Chunk of cashew cheese topped with a blackberry with a balsamic reduction
First Course:
  • Spicy Thai Lettuce Wraps with Tamarind Chile Sauce, Pea Shoots, Mango and Cabbage
  • Jerusalem Artichoke and Cucumber Dolmas with Cilantro Tahini, Preserved Lemon Oil and Fresh Mint
  • Ironbound Island Sea Vegetable Salad with Blue Green Algae Dust, Watercress, Avocado, and Mellow White Miso Dressing
Second Course:
  • Marinated Shiitake and Avocado Sushi Rolls with Pink Pickled Ginger, Cucumber, Dulse rolled in Jicama Rice
  • Morel Mushrooms with Spring Vegetables and Ramp Cream, Sweet Corn, Sugar Snap Peas and 50 Year Balsamic
  • White Corn Tamales with Raw Cocoa Mole, Marinated Mushrooms, Salsa Verde and Avocado
Third Course:
  • Cold Avocado Soup with Mango and Chili Chutney
Fourth Course:
  • Zuchinni and Roma Tomato Lasagne with Basil-Pistachio Pesto, Sun-Dried Tomato Sauce and Pignoli Ricotta
  • Lapsang Smoked Portabella Mushroom with Caper Potato Salad, Hawthorne Valley Ruby Kraut, and Wildflower Honey Mustard
  • Chanterelle Mushroom and Kalamata Olive Raviolo with Macadamia Cream, Parsely Salad and Pistachio Oil
Palate Cleanser:
  • Shot glasses of Melon Water
Fifth Course:
  • Chocolate Molten Lava Cake with Mocha Mousse, Chocolate Sauce, and Vanilla Pink Peppercorn Ice Cream
  • Passion Fruit Mousse with Lime Cream and Pineapple Coconut Sorbet
  • Orchid Trio of Ice Creams of Umeboshi Lemongrass, Chamomile Tamarid Mangluck and Green Tea Cardamom Pistachio
Dude, I KNOW.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

I Have Problems with Cell Phones

I can't use them.

Okay, I can, but not very well.


I put it down to both disinterest, and the fact that, without prior experience, it's pretty much impossible to just pick one up and make a call. See, my lack of desire to be able to be reached whenever and where ever - I couldn't even tell you what my cell number is without looking it up - has lead to my resistance to learning how to use a technology that's so much more complex then it needs to be.

If I could have a cell phone that had an ON/OFF button, an ANSWER button, and a HANG UP button, along with all the numbers, I would possibly use mine more often. Possibly. Okay, probably not, but I'd be much happier when I did make use of it.

I don't think there's been such a device since the times of Zach Morris.

PS: It's impossible to find a picture of Morris on his cell phone, so I made the picture you see above. I am a talented lass.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Interviewed By A Creampuff

So Rose has an awesome idea: Comment on a post where she answers five interview questions, and she'll ask you five questions of her own, only if you offer to do the same for others. So, here goes.

First, the Q&A.

1. Susur calls. He's coming over later, just to hang. What do you cook for him?

Oh, man. OH, MAN. First off, I would love to know your plans for how I can make Susur a friend who would come all the way to Burlington to just hang. Because I feel like that's something that I would very much like to happen.

So I've been thinking about this for a bit, and I've come to the conclusion that I wouldn't cook a damn thing. Ah, but I would MAKE stuff. If he moseyed on over, and it was no where near time for a meal, I would serve up a batch of homemade chocolate cinnamon cayenne ice cream - you know the icy wonder that I'm talking about, lady. I'd probably pair that with a sauce made from my cinnamon peanut butter. Just because I think it would fucking rock.

Since I tend to love the flavours and type of cooked cuisine that Lee specializes in, I would take a complete left turn and prepare something completely different. Yup, I'd uncook him a few raw food vegan dishes. Veg sushi made with jicama rice as a starter, and a zucchini lasagne with cashew-cheese as a main. And then that freakfest ice cream for dessert.

2. So, uh . . . what's with you and the monkeys?

There's nothing like a prehensile tail.

Really, though, when I step back from the monkey cuteness and really think about it, their genetic proximity to the human animal is a constant reminder of the respect that we have for the beings that we share the planet with. And they're also a constant reminder as to one of the reasons why I haven't eaten anything with a face in over a decade.

I fear I have just outed myself as a hippy. Damn you, Rosemary!

3. Which embarassing teen film did you feel captured the essence of your experience but when you watched it as an adult, made you cringe?

The Breakfast Club. I was so sure that I was that geek that Brian represented. Looking back, I had such a distorted view of myself, it makes me laugh. But I really value that as well, because I don't think I'd be the awesome ass (with an awesome ass) that's before you now without putting all that crap and pressure and need to people-please on myself, you know?

4. If you could go back and deliver a message to your twenty year old self, what would you say?

I gots three:

  • Google
  • The Pocket Fisherman really IS the best Popiel invention ever.
  • Stop being a fool and let yourself fall in love already.

5. If you could have any superpower, what would it be?

This is something that we really shouldn't talk about.

I've already said too much.

Damn you, Rosemary!

Okay, I would love to be a pre-cog, but only if I could control it. I really am that much of a control freak.

And now, the give and take. Want to take part? Leave a comment with your email address and I'll make up a few questions for you to answer.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Latest Etsy Loves

In the past, I've told you about The Black Apple, Bonspiel Creations and Hollyhawk Handmade Leather. Figured it was time to tell you about a few new kids who have caught my eye. Say hello to:

ORNO (the all-caps is their idea)

Blueberry Bandit

And Pop Pictures:

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

The Birds

I have an abiding love for handmade animal creations. The latest object of my admiration is Ann Wood.

Wood's handmade bird sculptures, made of vintage, reclaimed fabrics, just delight me to no end. She's recently started a series called The Daily Bird where a new creation is posted for sale every day.

That's right. One. One a day. Which means that I am never quick enough to snap one of these lovelies up. So, let's take a look of my favourites wee cheeping lads and lasses so far.

Confidential to Kate and Rose: She does completely lovely and outrageous cake toppers as well.

Saturday, May 05, 2007

I Want, I, Well, Want

Fashiony blog I Want - I Got directed me to the works of French jewellery-maker Boucheron. And I WANT.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

If I Were a Broach-Wearing Lass, I'd Wear This

Originally uploaded by little nemo in slumberland.
By Little Nemo in Slumberland, from Australia. Unfortunately, I can't seem to find any of his work for sale online. I sure wish I could, though.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Facing Forward

It's important to have things to look forward to. Anticipation of the coming awesome makes the in-between times, the even-keel times, the times where nothing remarkable is happening, just...better. The possibility of what might happen starts to colour the ordinary, and things start to look different.

Grocery shopping see the inclusion of wee, travel-sized items in my cart. Coveting of a lovely dress by a new designer, physically only available in NYC (interwebs don't count!) lead to thoughts of what it would take to track it down and try it on. Emails tend to start with an "I'm going to see you soon!" and responses are all, "You're going to be here soon!". Stating the obvious becomes delightful.

It's been a while since I've taken a trip that didn't have anything remotely related to work. And I'm thinking that I really don't do enough of taking trips just for the fun of it.

NYC, I hope you feel like playing nice when I come down to visit you. I want to walk and walk and walk about your streets with my friends, shopping and eating and shopping some more. And I want to do it wearing awesome little spring-like dresses, and swing my arms and feel the sun gently falling down on my head.

I want to have fun. I plan on having fun. And, you know what? I really do think that fun? Is going to be unavoidable.

Can't. Wait.