Thursday, August 30, 2007

A Perfect Couple



Motorcyle Boots at the Beach + Broken Doll Eyes = Tru Luv 4Eva

God, I love The Hills.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

The Best Thing About Moving Is the Decluttering

For a while, there, I seemed to move every year or so, and it let me really get a handle on all of my stuff. It also helped me deal with my pack-rat tendencies, as seeing things spread out before you that you never had any intention of using again lent to ruthless chucking out and/or foisting on others who were near and dear.

You may already know that I'm a planner. And with a pending move date on the books, and yes, it is a full month away, I've already begun to sort through my things, and start to fill up trashbins and recycling containters in the garbage hut with massive amounts of "what the fuck was I thinking?" objects. Three years in a single place = amass a bunch o' crap. Hopefully, the sorting will be done by this weekend, and the packing can begin.

I think when I settle down again, I'm going to force myself to do a bi-annual purge. It just makes things so much easier in the long run.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Updates Will Be Even More Erratic Then Usual

What with the plans with the move and all. Just a heads-up.

Friday, August 24, 2007

In Which I Spend $0.31

Given my fondness for tracking things (the Dell computer construction process? Genius. Packages of lovely things shipped from there to here? Brilliance. My workouts? A part of my day), I can't believe I haven't purchased a heart rate monitor before yesterday.

Thankfully, a $100 gift card to Sportchek put an end to that. With an in-store 20% discount, total layout for the Polr F4: $0.31. Which, I think, just might be the best $0.31 that I have ever spent.

I've been thinking about wearing it to meetings that I know are going to be difficult. Because I am an ass.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

I Have a Great Condo. You Should Buy It.

I know, I've been pretty silent over the last couple of days. That's because I had something brewing that I needed to tell people in my offline world about first, before telling everyone else.

I was offered an excellent job. In Columbus, OH. And I'm taking it. My start date is October 1, and, holy crap, do I have things to do. In fact, I'm just awaiting the arrival of my real estate agent.

So, buy my place, please. It's your duty to make my life easier.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Oh, So Pretty

Everyone likes a pretty picture, right? Well, the kids at Notcot.com have set up reader-contribution based sites based on amazing pictures of cool stuff. Each image links to the webpage where it lives. Check it:

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Today Has Been A Good Day

  • Former co-worker(s?) and always friends Kate and Rose are over from the west coast for a few days, and they're slaving away in my workspace.
  • And talking about former co-workers and still friends, June Li from ClickInsight also made sure to show her lovely face in our office space.
  • Current co-worker, currently on maternity leave, Lucy came in for the first time since starting her leave and introduced us to her new little man. He's an adorable flirt already.
  • PUFFERFISH HAS ARRIVED. Ellen from Bonspiel has an amazing talent. Review written and posted to ChickAdvisor.com.

Monday, August 13, 2007

I Fall In Love A Lot, I Know

I am a fickle soul. Especially when it comes to coats.

I am also thinking about autumn and winter already. And this coat, by Gr.Dano.


But, really, can you blame me?

Friday, August 10, 2007

Bread Wrap Sandwich

I don't often get confused by food. There are things that I don't like, and there are things that I choose not to eat, but I pretty much understand the thought process behind why someone, anyone, would have come up with a dish.

On Friday, I was throughly stymied. We had a departmental planning session that occurred off-site, and was catered by the facility. At lunch, we were presented with wrap sandwiches, cut into quarters. Each one's filling was piled on top of a slice of buttered white bread, and then rolled up. The wrap was then sealed shut with more butter.

Gives a whole new meaning to the term Sandwich Wrap.

I retaliated in the only way that I knew how - poke out the vegetables and add them to my already massive salad, and make sarcastic comments about the food service.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Celebrity Sexual Positions. Plus, Pufferfish.

Am delighted that The Knights of Prosperity returned to TV last night. Love everything about this show.

Also, to celebrate my own awesomeness, I bought a new bag. I figure she'll do much to keep my Retrodelic company. Handmade, and one-of-a-kind, made by the talented Ellen from Bonspiel. Say hello to the Pufferfish:





I can't wait until she arrives!

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Let Us Talk of Fried Spaghetti

That's right, I said fried spaghetti. It's freaking awesome. I've been eating it since I was wee, and I shall never, ever, ever not eat it.

Why is it so great? Well, it tastes amazing, much better, in my estimation, then pasta that comes out of boiling water and is smothered with sauce. It also ensures that you don't waste food, because, really, who wants to eat leftovers for days, or throw away sauce that you don't use first time around? No one, that's who. Also, it allows you to do something with cooked pasta that you probably never thought would be possible - freeze it and eat it later. Dude!

So, here's how you go about taking part in a meal of the gods. I'm going to pretend that you're like me and will be making pasta with the express purpose of frying it up.

  1. Boil up pasta - stringy types like spaghetti or angel hair will work best. If you're planning on freezing leftovers, use a whole package.
  2. Cook up a mess of tomato sauce.
  3. Dump pasta into a large bowl, and pour sauce over top. Stir until pasta is covered.
  4. Let cool and put in fridge. Let pasta absorb sauce over-night.
  5. Grab a large non-stick frying pan and melt some butter on medium-high heat.
  6. Put the amount of pasta that you'd like to eat in that there pan. Stir until heated through, and pasta absorbs butter.
  7. Stop stirring. Let the pasta sit for a bit, drying out. Stir to get the top layer to the bottom of the pan. Let pasta sit. And so on and so on.
  8. If you, like me, like dark toast, overcooked brownie edges, burnt cheese on pizza crust and the one or two lone dark chips that you might find in a bag of chips, you then let the pasta sit for a long time, until it becomes crispy, and, perhaps, a little blackened. Or a lot blackened.
  9. Then you eat.
  10. If you want to freeze spaghetti in order to fry it up later, after you coat the boiled spaghetti with sauce, grab some sandwich bags, and create individual portions then put in the freezer. Allow to defrost before frying.
The end.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Will Design For Food

I adore Jay McCarroll. Drama machinations aside, he's the most talented winner, hell, the most talented contestant, to make if out of Project Runway alive.

Yesterday, New York Magazine published an article, The Near Fame Experience, that perported to explore the bitter lows of appearing on Bravo's reality shows Project Runway and Top Chef. It's a great read, though, like everything, should be taken with a grain of salt. For a response, check out the latest entry on Andy from Bravo's blog.

Right, so read the article. Read Jay's quotes. Then watch these videos posted to YouTube on the date of the publication of the article.

With a Crystal Water's soundtrack...




And then the raw footage:









Monday, August 06, 2007

Book Review: Exit Strategy

As part of the miniBookExpo for Bloggers (hi Lex!), I got my paws on Kelley Armstrong's latest, Exit Strategy (Random House / Seal Books).

I've been an Armstrong reader since the publication of her first book, Bitten, the first in what would become the Woman of the Otherworld series. With the Otherworld series, Armstrong created a world of werewolves, witches, necromancers and demons, integrated into a very familiar modern-day world. A world full of strong, well developed female characters. What more could you ask for?

Unfortunately, I got to the place with Armstrong's books where I started to find the sparkle that I loved in her writing lacking, and I started to get bored. I confess that I couldn't make it through more then half Haunted, and have resisted picking up the two novels that followed. Add that to the fact that Exit Strategy was a story without a whiff of the supernatural? I approached Armstrong's latest with both trepidation and expectation.

Exit Strategy is the first work in Armstrong's newest series, the Nadia Stafford books. It's a straight-up suspenseful thriller, lacking all of the supernatural hallmarks of Armstrong's previous publications. That's not to say that it doesn't have a lot in common with her other stories - thankfully, the similarities are everything that got me hooked on Armstrong in the first place. Strong, nuanced characters. A female protagonist who gets that being strong doesn't mean denying emotion, or refusing to admit confusion or internal conflict. A well developed storyline. And events that maybe, just maybe, could be happening in your own backyard.

Nadia Stafford is an ex-cop and current assassin-for-hire (What is it about the words hit woman that sounds so awkward? It feels almost as bad as saying "lady doctor"). After finishing a job, she soon finds herself, along with her mentor Jack and other shady professional hit men tracking down a serial killer that they suspect is one of their own.

With Exit Strategy, Armstrong creates an excellent, fast-paced and layered story. The hunt for a killer is intertwined with the developing relationship between Nadia and Jack, the exploration of the underworld of killers for hire, and the revelation of the events in Nadia's past that have brought her to this particular place and time.

Kelley Armstrong is a smart writer. She knows when to push the action of the story ahead, and when to travel down the side roads to reveal motivation and depth. And this? This all delights me.

I'm glad to be enjoying Armstrong's writing again, and I am looking forward to seeing where she takes Nadia and her world next.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Long Weekend Cycling is Dangerous

It's true! Last year, on this exact same long weekend, I found myself dodging banana peels flung from cars. This year? Ah, we'll get to that momentarily.

One of the routes that I ride on takes me right on by Bronte Creek Provincial Park. Along with the campgrounds located on the far side of the park, there is also a day-use area that opens to visitors at 8AM. En route to pass the Day Use Entrance, I could see a mess of cars parked on the gravel shoulder of the road, waiting to enter the park and get their Civic Holiday Weekend Day Party on.

The stretch of Bronte Road that borders the park is an excellent, straight, flat stretch of street - perfect for a sprint. However, the thing about road riding is that you're always constantly on the look out for things that might go wrong in the path ahead of you. So, the need to sprint, and 10 or so cars parked on both sides of the road. The only solution? Start gaining speed, and flip from aware to hyper-aware, and begin to anticipate the possibilities and plan reactions to all of them.

In front of one of the cars on the right side of the road stood a couple, talking, cups of coffee in-hand. In fact, they stood, talking, on the line where gravel shoulder turned into paved road. And in my head, I could see them make the decision to step onto the pavement, and cross the street.

Real life was a little different. As I hurled myself down the road at 40 km/h, I saw the woman step back, away from the road. And the man, he took a step forward. And then another. And stopped. And took a sip o' joe. And stood there, feet firmly planted, looking everywhere but in the direction of on-coming traffic.

Have I ever told you about how much I hate to yell? Passionate, passionate dislike. Avoid it whenever I can.

I yelled. I yelled, "WATCH OUT!"

The man slowly swivled his head, and a huge, shit eating grin spread across his face as he slowly stepped back onto the shoulder of the road as I zipped by. First thing that flew through my mind? Someone got an early start on the drinking.

Although I didn't look back to see what happened after, Jason, my brother, was riding a bit behind me. When he caught up at our usual slow-down-and-hydrate stretch of road, he told me that the lug of a man had immediately stepped BACK onto the road. And gave him the same ear to ear smile when Jason, more eloquent then I, shouted, "Get the fuck out of the road!" as he came up to his position.

Roads are the new sidewalks. Who knew?

Do you like how I made a complete non-event sound all crazy dangerous? It's a gift.

Friday, August 03, 2007

A Final Chicago Post

Only the stuff of excellence that I haven't already mentioned, mind you.

Eating at:

Shopping at:
And running at 6AM along the lake. Along the lake!

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

The Chicago Haul

Sterling Silver Jess Necklace by Figs & Ginger



Swiss Dot Swing Dress by Alice + Olivia, inner shell silk, outer dress silk/cotton.



And from Anthropologie: