Sunday, December 30

A New Year on Its Way

So I sort of have a new computer. On loan, basically. And I only have it for two weeks before I'm probably lending it to someone else for a month, so... not having my own computer has been an oddly placid hassle. I use the boys, usually, but when he's not home I don't really have the chance to write or work (I'm officially a freelance Editor now, win!). And when he isn't home I tend to feed my Triple Town addiction...

But a new year is on its way, which means a new collage and pages of resolutions in my Bible, hopefully a party where I can dress up and drink champagne, and a short-lived feeling of newness and rebirth come the first few days of January.
But right now, for the first time in quite a while, things seems to have potential. I'm working (a little) and still a substitute teacher (can't wait to get out of that, but at least I get to make my own schedule) and Christmas (my favorite holiday, even as an atheist) left me with a lot of things I really kind of needed. Clothes that I actually like and can wear to work, so I can finally throw away some of the things I've had since I was 14; a new cookware set so I'm not eating bits of Teflon in my soups; and a lot of things I actually kind of wanted: books, blankets, a munchkin game.

Somehow, I feel a very slight, subtle sense of... possibility, for the first time since I graduated college. I even have a little pile of story ideas spinning around in my head that I think are eager to get out, including a fantasy series (comic?) that was originally my partner's idea, but I've evolved and would like to write down, and a dark children's story that I think could be really good.

I'm afraid of this too, unfortunately, because much of this possibility will have to begin with a cleansing of what currently is. 

I need to throw away my scratched and broken pots and pans to make room for my beautiful new set.
I need to throw away the clothes that are torn, don't fit, and I just don't like, and finally make room for a wardrobe that I actually look forward to wearing, and create a more concrete (though still completely fluid) visual identity that I actually like, and makes me feel like me.
I need to redo the office and its contents for the beau's new Drafting Table-- which means his hulking desk is now mine, which is another new beginning to cleanse and start.
I need to reevaluate my living space as a whole to find a way to keep it clean and love it and discourage laziness.
I need to purge myself of laziness and focus wholeheartedly on this work that I really really want to do for the rest of my life, which I'm finally taking baby steps towards.
I need to reevaluate my working life, since I didn't get into grad school and now have a large span of time without a proper plan or indication of what/where I want to be. This is slightly alleviated by the point above, but as my freelance work is small and only just beginning to crawl, there has to  be something else in the meantime.
I need to pour energy into my body (exercise) and relationship (attitude) by letting go of the past and beginning again.

And these aren't even my resolutions. Though now that I've written them they're definitely going in my Bible...

Having said that, I need to get to work. I have a new novel to edit, and I haven't even gotten to the second page.

Wish me luck.

Friday, October 5

"Superheated infusion of free-radicals and tannin"

So we've been doing our afternoon tea almost every day this week. 
Our first tea. I need a bigger tray...
Despite my original menu, this week we've mostly been having:
Cucumber & Cream Cheese Sandwiches
Salmon & Cream Cheese Sandwiches
Strawberry Pocky
Almond Pocky ($.75!)
Pimento Cheese Sandwiches
Butter Crackers ($.69!)) with EuroCrem
Toast with Butter & Jam
Green Tea
Irish Breakfast Tea
Chai Tea

Had these mango cookies: too sweet to eat!!

I like it, but it's having the opposite effect from what I wanted. Instead of refreshing myself with a light snack and hot drink, I end up feeling full and even more sleepy! I've been trying to work with caffeinated teas, but no helpfulness so far!

Somehow the pocky and buttered toast are still my favorites!
But as the weeks gone on, we're losing steam as far as doing it every day. Thursday we just didn't feel like it, and today there wasn't much point because we were both home most of the day.

I'm hoping to start it back up tomorrow, though it might have to be with coffee instead of tea...
Upcoming food ideas are pimento cheese & bacon sandwiches, fruit slices, and (hopefully) pumpkin muffins.

Drink up!

Thursday, October 4

A Weetzie Party

I'm imagining a party. 

A birthday party, maybe.

Where all the decorations are pink and purple and covered in glitter, and fake flowers are strewn across the room. Paper stars hanging from branches, glitter garland around the doors and tables. Confetti on every table to spray around the rooms.

The invitations are sent out in little white envelopes, filled with glitter confetti that dances to the floor when you open it.

Pink champagne and hibiscus tea to drink,
tiny cakes with rainbow sprinkles litter the table.
Veggie hummus dip, dried hibiscus snacks.

Everyone has to be lovely, in glam dresses and flower crowns and silver tiaras, dress pants and dapper vests and hats. Glitter on every cheek and bright, colorful bracelets jingling from everyone's wrists.

The Beatles should play in the background. And african drum beats and salsa and David Bowie. Everyone dances and everyone smiles.

Tuesday, October 2

A Love Letter to Food [part 1]

I've recently decided to end my love affair with food.
I know, it's crazy, and I probably won't be able to do it, but I'm determined.
Being obsessed with food means I spend too much on it, thinking it's more important than everything else, and I miss out on other opportunities that would require that money. But I don't really enjoy it the way I used to. Going out to dinner isn't an event for me anymore, and having an awesome meal only makes enough pleasure to last the meal, not afterwards, like it used to. Maybe this is something that should be remedied, but until then, it is a hinderance.
So, I'm giving up my excessive food spending and making a new pact to be happy in all ways, not just culinary ones.

So this is my love letter to food, and all the beautiful, delicious things I'm not going to let take over my life anymore, and will miss sorely.

  Asian food is my wild lover. Spicy sometimes, refreshing others, and only occasionally sweet, like Thai tea with cream that courses through my veins in rich, luscious waves. Vietnamese "Bun" with cold, soft noodles topped with crisp lettuce and veggies, fried onions, crunchy peanuts, hot, delicious spring rolls that bring the bowl to heavenly levels, all smothered in a sweet, salty ichor more like broth than dipping sauce. Mussamun curry, rich and nutty and sweet. Summer rolls like a mouthful of cold, refreshing summer afternoon drinks in a breeze that seems to open the sky. Papaya salad, like a chilly, orgasmic kick in the mouth, overflowing with spices and citrus flavor. Korean bar-b-que, with sizzling pork belly on a hot gas grill, smothered in spicy pepper sauce and wrapped in a leaf with rice, garlic, green onions. Kimchi and rice with a dripping fried egg. A table full of dim sum; dumplings and shrimp crepes and bao buns, oh my. How can I ever resist you?

Sushi. My ultimate obsession. Cool, refreshing, amazing. Expeeeensive.
Rich, luscious yellow tail in thick pink slices. Buttery white tuna that melts in your mouth. Oily, meaty salmon that stays with you after you finish. Spicy tuna hand rolls like heaven in a cone. Fiery, meaty, crunchy, delicious.
Uni. Ah, sea urchin. Salty. Sweet. Soft. Briny like the sea itself with that smooth, ephemeral taste that dissolves on your tongue and wraps its way around your taste buds. I can never have enough.

Frozen yogurt has become an obsession in the world. Giant swirls of the icy cream treat, drowning in piles of fresh mangoes, crushed cereal, chocolate chunks, bits of gram-cracker covered cheesecake bites, and squishy fruit pearls like sweet, candy eggs of fruit juice.
My favorite is always original, plain yogurt flavored, although it always seems to have a different name.
Nothing but fruit on mine, please, fresh cut and tart with it's realness. Juice bubbles too, please, popping between my teeth in an explosion of sweetness. Occasionally chewy mochi, bits of cereal, or a layer of marshmallow fluff graces my bowl, but rarely are chocolates, cookies, or candies present.

Seafood is my nostalgia food. I lived in Florida for a (very) short time when I was little. Moving from there to the south instilled in me a feeling of constant wistfulness for the joys of Florida. The sunshine, the relaxation, the clear waters, and-- most of all-- the food. Fresh seafood, fresher than just about anywhere else I've been. Crabs, shrimp, clams, oysters, and did I mention crabs? I've always loved snow crab legs, garlic blue crabs, king crabs, stone crabs. *sigh* And I've grown to love things I didn't even eat then, like the puffs of sea-water in raw oysters, the lightly seared scallops, salmon in just about any creamy, smooth sauce, and lets not forget the sushi I've become so obsessed with.

Most of these images were actually taken by me. The others are from the web, and when clicked should take you to the original page.

Sunday, September 30

Tea Time Research

An Afternoon Tea for Two

One of my birthday presents was a tea service at our only Tea Room in town. 

I took this time to take a break, have a treat, and I jumped at the opportunity to consider it research ^-^
We got a tea service for two including a pot of tea (Winter...Palace, I think; very almond-y and sweet, reminded me a little of cough syrup unfortunately, but I was still quite happy with it) and a service of desserts, scones, and sandwiches.

The salmon sandwiches were okay (just salmon and cream cheese on a bagel), the chicken salads were perfectly light, and the scones with clotted cream were my favorite (just because of the cream!). I also discovered that I adore Treacle tarts, but only in small amounts...

This is not something I'd want to do often (particularly because I'm not sure the quality/quantity was worth the $30 price-tag) but it was calm, relaxing, and tasty. And definitely inspired me to work on beginning the transition.

Afterwards I grabbed a few things to slowly build my afternoon tea supply.
Pocky (strawberry, almond)
European crackers (possibly cookies; I haven't tried them yet)
Green Tea
Spicy Chai Tea

along with some veggies and bread.

I've made a box for the dry things, so they stay in one place for me! Yay Organization!

Saturday, September 29

Beautiful Books :: The Fault in Our Stars

Beautiful Books

The Fault in Our Stars
John Green

"Even then, it hurt. The pain was always there, pulling me inside of myself, demanding to be felt." {142}

I don't think I ever created a post about Looking for Alaska. It's a very good book, and I was happy to get through it, and really liked it. It has one of my favorite quotes in all of literature. The image to the right. Absolutely beautiful.
However, as much as I was impressed by Looking for Alaska, The Fault in Our Stars really really blew me away. 

"'It's a metaphor, see: You put the killing thing right between your teeth, but you don't give it the power to do its killing.'" 
{page 20}

The entire book is wonderfully written. It (and its characters) are insightful, beautiful, and so very quotable. The story is about a girl who has cancer, and a boy she meets. It's both funny, quirky, fun, sad, and incredibly moving.

"I liked Augustus Waters. I really, really, really liked him. I liked the way his story ended with someone else. I liked his voice. I liked that he took existentially fraught free throws. I liked that he was a tenured professor in the Department of Slightly Crooked Smiles with a dual appointment in the Department of Having a Voice That Made My Skin Feel More Like Skin." {31}

Some people might be disappointed with an ending that doesn't "solve" everything, however, but I feel like that is part of the realism of it, and I'm okay with that.
"...I felt robbed. I would probably never again see the ocean from thirty thousand feet above, so far that you can't make out the waves or any boats, so that the ocean ins a great and endless monolith. I could imagine it. I could remember it. But I couldn't see it again..." {305}

I don't want to talk to much about it, or hype it up too much. But the writing is beautiful and I was genuinely happy with it. 
It's also being made into a movie, apparently, which is kind of cool. I'm not sure how well it would translate into film, but since Green is involved in the creation, I've got good thoughts.

"We're as likely to hurt the universe as we are to help it, and we're not likely to do either." {312}

Read it. It's lovely.

Thursday, September 27

Instituting Afternoon Tea

I've been working almost full time for the past two weeks (the state won't let me work proper full time- they'd have to pay more than minimum, or give us benefits) and there are two constants when I get home, regardless of how my day went.
I am always sleepy.
And I am always hungry.

It's time to remedy this with a new tradition/habit.

Tea Time!

Tea Food Ideas:

[sandwiches] cucumber & herbed cream cheese. salmon & herbed cream cheese. ham & butter. curried chicken salad. pimento cheese. apples & cheese. avocado & cheese or turkey. tomato & mozzarella or avocado. veggie.

[savories] cheese biscuits. cheese croissants. crackers & spread. veggies & dip. shrimp toasts. meat slices. rice balls with nori. tomato bites.

[sweets] cake minis. pastries. scones with clotted cream & jam. tartlets. fruit & chocolate croissants. muffins.

[easies] toast with butter & jam. crackers & cheese. fruit. cookies.

Inspirational images follow. The internet is FULL of them, and I can't wait to get started. 

My boy and I both get home at 3 almost every day, and he never eats unless food is provided (-.-) and I am looking for a new and fun tradition-- and desperately need a pick-me-up every afternoon-- so this is perfect.
My plan is afternoon tea every weekday between 3 & 3:30. And on weekends (if we feel like it) at 4.
To save myself time, I will (theoretically) prep most of the week's menu on Sunday nights. Pre-cut breads, toppings, etc. Slice & store fruits and necessary fillers (meat, veggies, etc). Also, make bulk things like chicken salad (have I posted that recipe yet? it's amazing), cucumber cream cheese mix, etc.

My first week starts Monday, so I'm looking through pictures and recipes and working on an early menu. I'm probably not really going to stick with it, but since I'm so broke right now, I need to have a plan for affordable and reusable things and stick to it. This list should run about $15 for the week, assuming any time I use "meat", it's whatever meat was eaten for dinner the night before. This is my base idea for Week 1.

Cucumber Sandwiches
Fruit Bites
Cheese Squares

Crackers with Herb Spread
Meat Slices
Veggie Bites
Fruit Bites

Savory Sandwiches
Toast with Jam

Dinner Bites (leftovers)
Apples & Cheese
Fruit Bites

Week's Leftovers
(most likely Cucumber Sandwiches, Cheese & Crackers/Apples, Toast with Jam)

I'm excited.

Friday, August 31

Worlds of Taste {5} :: Pink Smog

Worlds of Taste

Part {5} :: Pink Smog
(Francesca Lia Block, 2012)

"I got myself a bowl of Lucky Charms. The pink hearts, yellow moons, orange stars, and green clovers ached my molars as the milk turned rainbow colors." (1)
"...watching the clock and eating the lunch I'd made-- an apple and a pack of orange cheese spread and crackers." (5)

"I got a can of Tab, sleek and sweaty with cold. ... I drank my Tab. It tasted like sweet liquid metal." (11)

"I heated up some frozen mac and cheese for us and sat next to her..." (11)

"I brought her Brazil nuts and ginger ale and red licorice. I would have tried to cook but I always burned the grilled cheese sandwiches or let the rice bubble over. The only thing I could make was instant mac and cheese but she didn't want that and neither did I. I wished she had taught me to cook when I was littler and she was happy..." (25-26)

"... the cute waiter sand me Cat Stevens songs and brought me a Cobb salad and a piece of birthday cake." (29)

"They served veggie burgers and sprouts and hibiscus lemonade. Carney's was a hot-dog place inside and old train car. Butterfield's was a sunken garden at the bottom of the stairs, like someone's run-down mansion where you could have elegant brunches with quiche, fresh fruit, and champagne among lacy trees." (33)

"We ate little pieces of raw fish and candied ginger and my parents had cocktails and wine." (35)

"They stay in a tiny, lovely Victorian hotel on a steep hill and eat fettuccine at an Italian restaurant." (49)

"I ate my peanut butter and jelly sandwich and she massacred her apple. I offered her half a frosted Pop-Tart but she looked at it like it might bite back so I quickly returned it to my lunch box." (57)

"Bobby and I got ice-cream cones but Lily didn't want one and I didn't push-- she looked as if I were going to stab her with my swirly pink-and-white confection." (71)

"...afterward we made Pillsbury chocolate chip cookies and at the whole batch... I have to admit chocolate never tasted so good." (101)

"...we were home stuffing our faces with the 3 Musketeers bars Bobby had brought over for trick-or-treaters..." (123)

"...her mother was a professional housewife who liked to cook elaborate meals to entice her daughter into eating. The huge, fatty dishes only made Lily starve herself more." (132)

"I wanted to make her soup but I was a lousy cook and I knew she didn't want any either. ... He... came back with a large green apple and a cup of peppermint tea with lemon and honey." (133)

"I wanted to make pancakes, bacon, and scrambled eggs for dinner. Sometimes it cheered me up to eat meals at the "wrong times"." (134)

""We'll have pressed turkey and cranberry jelly and pumpkin pie under the cuckoo clocks, okay?"" (137)

"When I was little he liked to take me to Norms Coffee Shop for hamburgers and vanilla shakes that we ate in the vinyl booths,... or could make your own toast at the toasters at your table. We had ice-cream cones at Wil Wright's.... Farrell's where they made a huge ice-cream birthday concoction called the Zoo that was covered in little plastic animals. ... We sat down under the wooden birds and ate the orange sticky buns the restaurant was famous for, as well as turkey dinners with pressed turkey and cranberry jelly and mashed potatoes." (145)

"In the same way I ate a double-scoop pistachio-and-cherry ice-cream cone and then had popcorn and a large Sprite at the movie theater..." (147-148)

"...bought ingredients to make pasta with pesto sauce and a spinach salad with walnuts and dried cranberries and balsamic vinegar..." (161)

"I was going to make turkey sandwiches, green beans with candied almonds, yams with marshmallows, and cranberry sauce." (161)

"...we drank the cold, bitter white wine from plastic cups and chewed Bubble Yum to take the edge off." (166)

"We hate gnocchi and ravioli, Indian curries and samosas, pork buns and chow mein. ... while we went to buy oranges, milk, and cornflakes at the corner market." (183)

The Worlds of Taste series here is a collection of all the mentions of food that occurs in the books of Francesca Lia Block. Sometimes accompanied by photos from the web, or sometimes just colored with glitter and shine, these posts remind me of the luxurious world of food within the FLB books. Read others at Worlds of Taste {3}: Weetzie Bat, or {4} : Ecstasia

Sunday, August 26

Beautiful Books :: Pink Smog

Beautiful Books

Pink Smog
Francesca Lia Block

"I don't know if I can do this myself," I said, meaning everything, meaning life.
"Yes you can. You can do anything you put your mind to. You just needed a little help through adolescence..."

Ever wonder how Weetzie Bat became so slam glam fabulous and in love with the world? 
Well it turns out she wasn't always a life-loving city goddess, she was once just Louise Bat, a shy brunette who skated to school, got picked on, and never felt sure of herself.
But after her dad leaves home, Louise has to find a way to bring herself up to the top. There's a strange new family in her building, with a chic purple-eyed woman, a devilish girl who terrorizes Louise, and an Angel Boy who watches over her. At school the popular girls tease her and put gum in her hair. Her mother stays at the bottom of a bottle. And her dad is nowhere to be found. 
"I realized that mean people had their purpose, too. They brought you together. They unified you. They made you find your friends."
Now Weetzie has to figure out how to navigate through it all and make herself happy even when everything is going wrong.
"I had this city and I decided I had better fall in love with her again because she wasn't going anywhere and neither was I.
The black pavement, dark to hide the dirt, sparkled with diamond chips in the burning sun."
This quick novel isn't the burning, flashing, life-changing manifesto of life and love and beauty that the original Weetzie Bat book(s) was, but it is still amazing in its own way. 
We don't pop out of the box cool and glam like Weetzie Bat. And the more we struggle to "be like Weetzie", the more we tend to forget that. This story shows that even Weetzie didn't start out as Weetzie, she had to create herself. And we all start off as Louise, struggling to make sense of a world that is constantly against us. And seeing that transformation, from Louise to Weetzie, is a very simple but beautiful story that still manages to resonate with the reader who's been there; young and alone and unhappy.
"And smog is like sadness. It slips stealthily inside of you,  with every breath, poisoning you before you realize it..."
Hell, at 23, it resonates perfectly with me now. That empty, alone feeling that crawls into your stomach and up into your brain and whispers and scratches at you, reminding you of all the things that keep going wrong. That will always go wrong.
But Pink Smog reminds us that sometimes we need to push that feeling away, find the beauty in our lives, and even reinvent ourselves to find who we really are, and what we really want.

Wednesday, August 15

Currently reading Pink Smog! Definitely puts me back in a blogging mood.
Also, have been having minor success selling bracelets on Etsy, and I really really want to make Weetzie inspires ones! Any suggestions???

Thursday, June 14

Words of Love

How to say I Love You in 100 Languages
((Image here removed, it was throwing off my site stats))

English - I love you
Afrikaans - Ek het jou lief
Albanian - Te dua
Arabic - Ana behibak (to male)
Arabic - Ana behibek (to female) 
Armenian - Yes kez sirumem 

Bambara - M'bi fe
Bengali - Ami tomake bhalobashi (pronounced: Amee toe-ma-kee bhalo-bashee)
Belarusian - Ya tabe kahayu
Bisaya - Nahigugma ako kanimo
Bulgarian - Obicham te

Cambodian - Soro lahn nhee ah
Catalan - T'estimo
Cherokee - Tsi ge yu i 
Cheyenne - Ne mohotatse
Chichewa - Ndimakukonda
Cantonese - Ngo oiy ney a 
Mandarin - Wo ai ni
Comanche - U kamakutu nu
(pronounced oo----ka-ma-koo-too-----nu) -- Thx Tony
Corsican - Ti tengu caru (to male) 
Cree - Kisakihitin 
Creol - Mi aime jou

Croatian - Volim te
Czech - Miluji te

Danish - Jeg Elsker Dig
Dutch - Ik hou van jou

Elvish - Amin mela lle (from The Lord of The Rings, by J.R.R. Tolkien) 
Esperanto - Mi amas vin
Estonian - Ma armastan sind
Ethiopian - Afgreki'

Faroese - Eg elski teg
Farsi - Doset daram
Filipino - Mahal kita
Finnish - Mina rakastan sinua
French - Je t'aime, Je t'adoreFrisian - Ik hald fan dy 

Gaelic - Ta gra agam ort
Georgian - Mikvarhar
German - Ich liebe dich
Greek - S'agapo
Gujarati - Hoo thunay prem karoo choo 

Hiligaynon - Palangga ko ikaw
Hawaiian - Aloha Au Ia`oe 
To female - "ani ohev otach" (said by male) "ohevet Otach" (said by female)
To male - "ani ohev otcha" (said by male) "Ohevet ot'cha" (said by female)
Hiligaynon - Guina higugma ko ikaw 
Hindi - Hum Tumhe Pyar Karte hae
Hmong - Kuv hlub kojHopi - Nu' umi unangwa'ta
Hungarian - Szeretlek

Icelandic - Eg elska tig
Ilonggo - Palangga ko ikaw
Indonesian - Saya cinta padamu
Inuit - Negligevapse
Irish - Taim i' ngra leat
Italian - Ti amo

Japanese - Aishiteru or Anata ga daisuki desu

Kannada - Naanu ninna preetisuttene 
Kapampangan - Kaluguran daka
Kiswahili - Nakupenda
Konkani - Tu magel moga cho
Korean - Sarang Heyo or Nanun tangshinul sarang hamnida 

Latin - Te amo
Latvian - Es tevi miilu
Lebanese - Bahibak
Lithuanian - Tave myliu
Luxembourgeois - Ech hun dech gaer 

Macedonian - Te Sakam 
Malay - Saya cintakan mu / Aku cinta padamu 
Malayalam - Njan Ninne Premikunnu
Maltese - Inhobbok 
Marathi - Me tula prem karto
Mohawk - Kanbhik
Moroccan - Ana moajaba bik

Nahuatl - Ni mits neki
Navaho - Ayor anosh'ni
Ndebele - Niyakutanda
Bokmaal - Jeg elsker deg
Nyonrsk - Eg elskar deg

Pandacan - Syota na kita!!
Pangasinan - Inaru Taka
Papiamento - Mi ta stimabo
Persian - Doo-set daaram
Pig Latin - Iay ovlay ouyay
Polish - Kocham Ciebie
Portuguese - Eu te amo

Romanian - Te iubesc
Russian - Ya tebya liubliu

Scot Gaelic - Tha gra\dh agam ort 
Serbian - Volim te
Setswana - Ke a go rata
Sign Language - ,\,,/ (represents position of fingers when signing 'I Love You')
Sindhi - Maa tokhe pyar kendo ahyan 
Sioux - Techihhila
Slovak - Lu`bim ta
Slovenian - Ljubim te
Spanish - Te quiero / Te amo
Swahili - Ninapenda wewe
Swedish - Jag alskar dig
Swiss-German - Ich lieb Di
Surinam - Mi lobi joe 

Tagalog - Mahal kita
Taiwanese - Wa ga ei li
Tahitian - Ua Here Vau Ia Oe
Tamil - Nan unnai kathalikaraen
Telugu - Nenu ninnu premistunnanu 
To female - Phom rak khun
To male - Chan rak khun
Informal - Rak te 
Tunisian - Ha eh bak 
Turkish - Seni Seviyorum

Ukrainian - Ya tebe kahayu
Urdu - mai aap say pyaar karta hoo 

To female - Anh ye^u em 
To male - Em ye^u anh 

Welsh - 'Rwy'n dy garu di  
  Yiddish - Ikh hob dikh
Yoruba - Mo ni fe

Zazi - Ezhele hezdege
Zulu - Mena tanda wena or Ngiyakuthanda   
Zuni - Tom ho' ichema 

Source : Links 2 Love

Related : How to Be Happy Page

Sunday, June 10

Beautiful Books - Paint it Black.

Paint It Black
by Janet Fitch

I didn't like this book at first. It was pretty but long and drawn out. Emotional, but not really sad for me; it jumped into a pool of this girl's misery, without really taking me on the beginning of the ride first. I didn't have an emotional connection. I got bored.
But I loved White Oleander, which is by the same author. So when I sat down to really get reading this year, I picked it back up.
I didn't regret it.

"People thought beauty was bullshit, just a Band-aid slapped over the abyss, but they couldn't be more wrong. It was like Lola Lola had said, beauty mattered, it was the only thing that fed you when everything else turned to shit."

It turned out to be an interesting mixture of really beautiful writing with a story/character that went up and down in my approval. Sometimes she was interesting and complex, other times she was whiney, self-obsessed, and too worried about what other people thought.
By the end, I was eager to know what would happen, and though I was disappointed in some ways, it was still a pretty good book. Very pretty writing, very emotional and in depth. 

Also, really made me want to make mint tea all the time. And I did, actually, a lot, for a while.
Which, by the way, is amazingly easy to make. Take mint, give it a rough chop/tear, and throw it in a tea pot with hot water. Sweeten lightly and drink in an adorable tea cup. So yummy.

"Through the tall windows, camellia bushes twenty feet high strained noon's passage with their winter green. They were so old they had grown into trees, bearing white flowers, a few of which floated in a crystal bowl on the table. This was all she wanted, to be allowed to lie still and drift and listen to Debussy, hidden away from the clear light of day that stood you against a wall and frisked you like a cop. A little softness was all she asked for. A stopped clock."

Overall a very emotional book, beautiful in it's descriptions and raw feeling. Wether or not I liked the story itself is a little less clear, but I can say with certainty that it was very pretty.

Wednesday, June 6

Dreadfully Busy

Why I'm busy/behind this month:

Currently trying to...
Get into grad school (which I can't afford)
Publish a Sci-Fi novel (which I just now completed)
Get a part-time job for the summer (which I really don't want to do because I'm lazy)
Stop being depressed
Read a LOT (currently reading It and a teen thriller called Envy)

Unfortunately, this leaves little time to really write on here, because all my free time is taken up by being super lazy, playing Diablo 3, or taking naps. Or eating. Crap I'm eating a lot right now. I'm going to gain weight again. *sigh*

I haven't disappeared though, I'm still working on things for here, if anyone's interested.

Monday, May 28

Worlds of Taste {4} :: Ecstasia

Worlds of Taste
Food in the world of Francesca Lia Block

Part 4 :: Ecstasia
(Francesca Lia Block, 1993)

Ecstasia is one of FLB's longer novels. It's a rich, complex story involving the lives of a group of friends in a sort of magical, post-apocoliptic LA, where only the young live above ground, dancing and twirling through a life of sweets and liquors and music and colors, while the old-- ashamed of their age-- go Underground to live out the rest of their lives in a haze of drugs and/or death. Those who choose neither chance the dessert around the city, while some find solace in the hallucinogenic drugs the Underworld has to offer.
The world is vivid and rich, and while I had trouble getting through it the first time (it's more dense than her others, and takes a little longer) it is so beautiful it's hard to forget.
I'd actually read the sequel first (Primavera) and got through it easier, but they're both so wonderful it doesn't even matter. Lovely writing, lush descriptions. Most of the descriptions show food in it's relation to luxury/pleasure. The youth Above eat and drink to celebrate life, but to the main characters it eventually feels shallow and fleeting. I wasn't sure how these descriptions felt, when here out of context, but they still hold that sort of... cynical...longing tone, which I think is interesting.

I felt the words should be dark and glittering, like stars dancing.
As I was going through the text, I felt like the words should be thick, black, dreamy. And the food of Elysia-- cakes, candy, sugar, champagne-- would be shades of pink, while the food of the dessert-- fruits, vegetables (life)-- would be their own appropriate colors..

"...where a mechanical doll with clocks set in her eye sockets served fluorescent drinks." (5)
"Huge oval mirrors in frames of silver roses reflected the tapestry cushions and the urns holding candy,..." (5)
"..swallowing the chocolate-mint liqueur from a bottle, licking his lips." (6)
" paint herself like an opal, eat cakes, to dance all day." (8)
"'He says he's addicted to Elysia. To all the sugar-things. He's a sugar-head,' the girl said." (10)
"The water will shine over their bodies, will fill their mouths. They will lose themselves in flowers and eat fruits that drop into their hands." (13)
"'Knocking myself against those sparkling glass windows to get inside to the champagne and the champagne-colored light.'" (15)
"Your father and I drank plum liqueur, and we watched the fireworks..." (18)
"You taste better than all the wines. You taste like crystal nectar. And you glow like wine in a glass." (27)
"Some people dressed in frilled baby costumes drank alcohol from nippled bottles." (31)
"This is the taste of longing-- like pomegranate. A thin film of translucent sweet coating the tiny, hard, white cores." (36)
" he drank from a big bottle of raspberry liqueur, thick with fruit." (44)
"'We could go eat or dance or get a drink. Dessert? Everything?'" (44)
"Lily ordered angel hair pasta, summer squash soup, persimmon salad, strawberry shortcake, a champagne cocktail. 
'You know how to order,' he said. 'Most girls I know seem scared of food.'" (45)
"Calliope took the cake layers out of the oven and began to spread them with jam." (52)
"'Does she eat enough?' His sister was swirling the pale chocolate cream onto the cake." (53)
"Lily pour two glasses of water from a carafe. The candle flames reflected in them." (56)
"Paul walked by eating fluorescent candy." (58)

"We would drink the coffee
swallow it all up
until the night was gone
leaving bare white dawn
the bare white cup..." (66)

"...where couples sat eating cake, drinking champagne, pouring champagne on their cake." (74)
"Some pretty stuff for a while, some sweet stuff, some spirits in a bottle..." (98)
"...veiled women dancing, lynx cats striding, reclining men lifting flasks of nectar to their lips." (98)
"If only I could take away the bottle that stains your lips. You say I am your wine. Let me be your wine." (99)
"...Paul's eyes across the table, cool, starry as the eyes of the luminous, looming dolls, while he ate his cake and ice cream. 'What happened to Rafe-sugar-head?' Paul asked one afternoon when Rafe ordered only sparkling water. 'I'm trying to quit.'" (110)
"Paul pushed aside the piece of layer cake drowning in chocolate ice cream." (111)
"They had eaten pastries for dinner..." (121)
"They don't want to give up all the circuses and cakes to work. To live." (132)
"He reached into his pockets and took out a handful of candy stars. The lights seemed to flash to the beat of the music that drifted up through the streets as Paul stood, eating his candy."
"Only when I drank the wine they slipped me at the long gold table did I forget. We all forgot." (141)
"...I was addicted to the glass garden and the fountains and the platters of iced rum cakes." (143)
Calliope reached into her pocket and took out some of the chocolate wafers Dionisio loved. The little girl popped them into her mouth and closed her eyes for a moment, like an addict who has finally retrieved the drug. She skipped away singing to herself, 'Butterfly flutter by, sweet meat meat sweet, sugar pie, pie in the sky.'" (153)
"Will you grow up gnawing on candy, addicted to the sweetness you savored in your mother's milk?" (153)
"...past a bar where people dressed in kimonos and high black wigs sat on pillows drinking sake and staring out the glass walls..." (154)
"And he was cracking open the blood-colored husk of the orb. And he was prying apart the insides. And he was ripping the small, bright kernel from the honeycomb sheath..." (160)
"He only needs to hold out his hand the the plums will drop-- the color of his curls and the flavor of his lips." (160)
"This sky of leaves, plums, peaches, grapes, apple blossoms." (161)
"...he would take me with him to get ice cream and give me dolls..." (165)
"I will.... eat the cakes and drink the champagne and go below when I am supposed to go below." (168)
"...hallucinations of gaping-mouthed plums are taunting him." (172)
"Dionisio and Paul will feed her wine and jams and sugared violets." (173)
"This man has dark curls and smells of fruit and smoke." (175)
"...mechanical dolls serving parfaits and exotic drinks with parasols to the beautiful children." (188)
"They were always hungry for fruits, vegetables, grains, thirsty for fountains, pools, lakes..." (192)

Related Posts: Worlds of Taste {1} Echo and {2} The Hanged Man and {3} Weetzie Bat

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