Monthly Archives: March 2010

When I grow up…

In my future, when I live alone in some chic apartment and have an absurd salaried job, my living room will feature one accessory:

At that point, my entire wardrobe will be custom tailored and famous artists will descend from their studios when they see me strolling along the sidewalks, and they’ll offer to paint my portrait:

Well, of course I'll wear a top hat every day. Quite.

(Romaine Brookes, Self Portrait–she dated Ida Godebski for several years. Ida was a super hot Russian ballerina and patroness of fine art, as evidenced by her taste in girlfriends and her commission of Ravel’s Boléro in 1928)

Isn’t playing make-believe fun?

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Streams of Whiskey

This is a lonely image.

This second image is almost conceptually identical to the one above, yet somehow much more comforting. And that’s because I’d just eaten a portion of the (boozy) cake you see before you.

These are samples of my friend Alice’s marvelous, ridiculously scrumptious handiwork. They are tiny (mighty) whiskey-soaked chocolate cakes with Guinness ganache on top–we’ve started calling in Guinnache (©, p.s.). Anyhow, the tin is nearly empty, which is naturally a good sign. I thought I might brag a bit before they were totally gone, just in order to accomplish a couple things:

1. to confirm Alice’s divinity

2. to give you the opportunity to improve your life, and

2. to do so on St. Patrick’s Day, a day on which there always seems to be a plenitude of whiskey.

This is Alice in true form.

Alice and I have both made this recipe before and, accordingly, it’s become one of our favorites (the Guinnache is all her doing, though–I wouldn’t dream of taking credit for her ingenious creation). The cake recipe is from an amazing food blog which you may have heard of: Orangette, written and operated by Molly Wizenburg. She and her husband recently opened a restaurant in Seattle named Delancey, she has a relatively new cookbook out, and she writes monthly columns for Bon Appétite–in short, she’s a food goddess. This cake is further proof.

I first made it a little over a year ago with another wonderful friend, Brian; he’s off in Washington now, doing big bad research in the field of nuclear proliferation. But back then, when life was simple, we made cakes. Cakes with Bulleit in them.

That’s Brian, working magic; and that’s the final, heavenly product, with its tasty benefactor in the background.

If I remember correctly, we made that cake to blow off some stress. We particularly wanted to alleviate some of Brian’s, since he was embarking on his second semester of Reed College Thesis Hell and also being a SB senate mastermind (don’t ask me how he does/did it). We accomplished our goal and got a ridiculously amazing cake out of it to boot. I certainly remember the day fondly (that much is obvious if you click the “About” tab up above). To insure that your own cake-making experience is ridiculously happy and appropriately decadent, I recommend you put the full cup of bourbon on into the batter. Then sprinkle a little more on top, just for good measure. It’s so natural and so worth it.

Anyhow, one year later, this cake is doing its job once again, this time coming from Alice’s incredibly able hands, alleviating the aches and pains of a new generation of cracked-out, under-slept seniors. It has powers. It works magic, I tell you (and don’t you try and tell me it’s just the boozy aroma). So my words of advice to you are: quit pussyfooting around and make your life better–make this cake. Now. And listen to some Pogues while you’re at it.

Oh, and as far as the Guinnache goes, you might have to improvise. I think ours is destined to become a secret house specialty…

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“Do you remember that day you fell outta my window?”

“I sure do, you came jumpin’ out after me.”

Looks like I’ll mostly be posting Youtube videos ’til graduation. Hope that’s enough to make you stick around, ’cause I sure like it when people read this thing, tiny & inconsequential as it is.

Anyhow, here’s a song of which I can’t seem to get enough. As usual, I’m behind the times, so I won’t be surprised if it’s already one you know and love. If not, listen up.

“While you were sitting in the back smokin’ a cigarette that you thought was gonna be your last, I was fallin’ deep, deeply in love with you… and I never told you ’til just now!”

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And another…

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Newest addition to my “To-see, post-thesis” list

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Change is good.

We’re getting to the truly crazy point in my last semester in college. I have just over 21 days left to me before my first draft is due to be submitted to the division. Yet even as my headspace is becoming more and more manic (termed the “crazy steady state” by a charming duo), I’m still managing to take good care of myself, with a good amount of help from some beloved friends. Musical therapy doesn’t hurt either.

The reason I’m here is because I’ve had a couple of serendipitous afternoons, walking down the hill from the coffeeshop to campus, where the shuffle setting on my iPod has rewarded me and coincided perfectly with the fleeting sunshine. And maybe between my slightly manic state of mind and the thin warmth from the spring light, I’ve developed a higher tolerance for pop-y covers and remixes, replete with handclaps and toy xylophone. In any case, the changing of the seasons from gray to gold is what I need and these few covers seem to be the perfect soundtrack, no matter their creative merit. Timing is, after all, everything.

Feist — Lonely Lonely [Frisbee’d Remix]

I’ve been revisiting Open Season. I only love few tracks off the album — this one, and then also the k-os remix of “Mushaboom,” since its freestyle contains some endearing Feist/Broken Social Scene references. Good cherry blossom music.

Thom Yorke — Atoms for Peace [Four Tet Remix]

The perfect combination.

Miles Fisher — This Must Be the Place (Naïve Melody) [Talking Heads Cover]

Talking Heads holds the special-est of places in my heart. If it weren’t for them, Reed College would not be what it is. I can say that much with certainty. I’m looking at you, “crazy steady” duo.

Anyhow. I know some of you will think this is blasphemous. Whatever. Embrace it. And happy March/thesising.

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