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October 2011

Posts from September 2011

Parenthood

Yet another interesting read this week: Parents of a Certain Age, from NY Mag, discussing the fact that advances in reproductive technology has resulted in first-time mothers in their late 40's and early 50's. But the question remains: is this good for the children of those mothers/parents?  I often think about the fact that my brother and sister, who are ten years younger than I, had a somewhat different childhood than I did, one factor being the age that my father was when we were born. My father was in his late 20's when I was born, which likely had some advantages, but he was in a better economic situation by the time they were born, when he was in his late 30's. If I had a child tomorrow, I would be 58 when he/she graduated from high school, and 70 when she/she turns 30.  Scary to consider . . .

Just food for thought. I promise I'm not having a child tomorrow.


Sometimes, It's Not You

This article in Sunday's Modern Love column truly spoke to me.* After having long term relationships in my 20's, since then I haven't had any relationship that lasted longer than 8 or 9 months. I have many friends in the same situation.  We feel defensive about it sometimes, like the woman in the article. We question: what is wrong with us? what could we do differently? do we repeatedly gravitate towards the wrong men? We try on different strategies: extreme dating, dating hiatus (or guy-atus), introspection. As time goes on, we grow more comfortable with our flaws, as they make us who we are. And, like the author of the article, we know in our hearts that the answer is simple:

"We just found the right guys. We found men who love us even though we’re still cranky and neurotic, haven’t got our careers together, and sometimes talk too loudly, drink too much and swear at the television news. We have gray hairs and unfashionable clothes and bad attitudes. They love us, anyway.

What’s wrong with me? Plenty. But that was never the point."

*That said, as @daisy17 astutely observed, the author can only write such an article now that she has gotten married. Had she not, she never would have done so.


Girly Girl

I don't think of myself as being particularly "girly." When I was a teenager, I barely wore makeup -- maybe a bit of eyeliner and lip gloss every so often --  and any hair styling was limited to mussing up my short 'do with some gel while my father pleaded with me not to get it cut too short at my next appointment with the clippers at Astor Place. 

Fast forward to the present day. Although I do spend time thinking about the style of my hair when I get it cut, I always insist on a style that doesn't require much "work." As for makeup, yes, I wear it every day (although not when I'm rolling out of bed on a weekend to go to the gym or do errands), but I think my entire makeup routine takes three minutes or so.

That said, I generally gravitate towards skirts and dresses. I love wearing cute but comfy heels, and every so often I bust out the dramatic eye makeup or red lipstick for an evening. I also have to admit nearly letting out a squeal of excitement when I recently purchased a dress I had been eyeing for a few weeks. I diligently waited until I got paid and paid all of my other expenses for the month, and discovered, to my delight, that it was on sale.  When I went to ring it up, there was yet another discount. For less than the original price of the dress I got the dress (a classic grey sheath, perfect for work) and a new (silver!) purse.

So I suppose it's time to own up to the fact that, yes, I'm girly. There. I admitted it. On the internet.


Food You Can Use: Let Us Eat Local & Dine Out Irene

Those of us in NYC were spared by Hurricane Irene (although we may have gained a pound or two from all the cooking), but many of the farmers upstate who provide us with amazing local produce weren't as lucky. In case you were wondering what you can do to help, here are some ideas:

Justfood One of my favorite organizations, Just Food, is hosting their annual Let Us Eat Local event on Wednesday, September 21st at The Altman Building. This event honors local eating and those who support it. This year's honorees include Joel Salatin of Polyface Farm (you may have heard of him if you've read The Omnivore's Dilemma), and Deb Kavakos of Stoneledge Farm. A portion of the proceeds will go to farmers who were impacted by Hurricane Irene; other proceeds will benefit the other work of Just Food.  Tickets are $175 and are available online. I'll see you there!

If you're going to eat out in NYC, make sure you do so on Sunday, September 25th, when an ever-growing list of restaurants will be participating in Dine Out Irene.  They will donate up to 10% of their sales that night to Just Food and GrowNYC to benefit NY area farmers hard hit by the hurricane. The only tough decision is where to go!


Fall is a State of Mind

Fallflowers

And despite these gorgeous fall colors, I'm not there yet. Still summer in my book. I'm not ready for wool sweaters, closed toe shoes, boots and scarves. I'm still jonesing to wiggle my toes in the sand, to let my skin (protected with sunscreen, of course) soak up the sun, and have picnics and barbecues. Who's with me?


Reunited (And It Feels So Good)

Shoe

I lost a shoe a few weeks back. Yes, ONE shoe. No, I was not galavanting around town in one shoe, wondering what became of the other one. This is New York; we walk quite a bit. As some of you know, I have incredibly low tolerance for impractical or uncomfortable shoes, and I'm always looking for shoes that I think look great but are also comfortable. This led me to the shoes you see here. Love them. My favorites. Still, after a day of walking and an evening of standing, in these or any heels, I generally have to change into flats. When I get home, I take my shoes off near the door, empty whatever bag(s) I am carrying (which usually contains the heels I took off in exchange for flats; either a foldable shopping bag of sorts, with no zip closure, or more often my gym bag, which zips), and wind down for the evening. Every few days, I clean up the shoe pile and return the shoes to their home on the shoe rack in my closet. As I was doing this recently, I somehow found myself with one shoe -- the lone beauty you see pictured. One. After retracing my steps, I inquired about the shoe at the three places I had been that night: Mother's Ruin, the Duane Reade nearby, and a taxi. No shoe. I went online looking for a replacement pair, but the bordeaux color I love is no longer available. I gave up, with a heavy heart.

Until Tuesday night. That night, I ran into T.J. from Mother's Ruin, who casually mentioned that he found my shoe. Last night, I went to retrieve it, and today, I'll wear them happily, and make sure they both make it safely home. That is, unless I have to wear galoshes again.


Weekend Wrapup Redux

Shrimp 
Wrote an entire post that got deleted somehow. Grr. So, here goes take two. As with the last post, I am noting, for the record, that this post will do absolutely nothing to convince my father that I do not, in fact, spend all of my free time jaunting about the city eating and drinking.  That said, I do it to keep up with the scene about which I write, but I do it mostly as a way to catch up with friends, who share similar passions (probably why we get along so well).  The weekend started off on Friday with post-work cocktails at Pegu Club with @daisy17 & @jordanarothman and then moved on to tapas at Tertulia, which is quickly becoming a neighborhood favorite.  I need to gather a large group to get their paella and also go sometime to their chef's dinner.

Saturday I slept late and shopped for provisions, produce and flowers at the Greenmarket. Once home, after lingering over coffee and the paper for a bit, I met up Karen once again for our maiden voyage to Smorgasburg, a food-only market by the Brooklyn Flea folks, where we joined up with Jordana and Daniel, and later John P. I had a decadent CT-style (all butter, no mayo) lobster roll from the Red Hook Lobster Pound followed up with a People's Pop made from Stumptown coffee, cream and sugar -- have to try to recreate those at home. Delicious. Next we walked over to Maison Premiere (where Vince joined us), where we lingered in their beautiful back garden over oysters, drinks and conversation. For the grand finale, the majority of us headed back to Manhattan, where we had a drink at Employees Only while we waited for dinner at Red Farm, another new favorite. Their dumplings are outrageous, as is the rib eye!

Sunday morning I went for a much-needed run, then headed up to Yankees Stadium with fellow USBGNY members where I was utterly spoiled from all future baseball games by sitting in a swanky suite. Truly luxurious!  Pictures from the game are here. After the game, a small group of us went out for drinks and nibbles, stopping at Pete's Tavern, Death & Company and Dram.

Chrishannahmenu 
Monday, the bonus day, I relaxed at home, did laundry, and made a batch of cold sesame noodles using sauce I had gotten from the Shorty Tang folks at Smorgasburg (see, Dad? Relaxing! Cooking! Being domestic!). Those were my contribution to @BeerGuy1's barbecue later that afternoon/evening; the food was fantastic -- that's what you get when the team behind Hearth is manning the grill -- and featured falling-off-the-bone smoked ribs and these beauties pictured above, among other delights. I made one final stop before heading home to bed: back to Maison Premiere to visit a friend who was guest bartending from New Orleans. He made me a perfect French 75 on my last trip there and decided that his French 75 would be a perfect way to cap off an amazing Labor Day weekend.


Rats

For those souls not (yet) following me on Twitter, I had an amusing New York moment yesterday evening. I was walking through Washington Square Park when I overheard a woman say to her friend, "Oh my God! I just saw a mouse!" I had seen the same creature scurry near us, but unfortunately, I did not have time to give her a lesson on NYC fauna.