Sunday, May 16, 2010

Can This Marriage Be Saved?

Sometimes, while reading the NYT Vows column, you can spot issues that are sure to pop up in the couple's relationship down the line. Like, "the bride and groom both graduated from Harvard, the bride summa cum laude." So the groom graduated with no undergraduate honors at all? Intellectual mismatch!!! (obvi)

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Instant Gratification

Inspired by Things I Ate That I Love and also, arguably, by altruism, I am sharing my Top Ramen alternative. Not that it's ramen, exactly, because it is definitely not, but it's Top Ramen-like in that it's vaguely Asiatic and cheap and fast and comforting. That last is also arguable because I've never actually eaten it with anyone around and maybe it's actually really gross and I don't realize it. Having just had some, though, I feel pretty confident that it's reasonably tasty. Also, it's better for you than Top Ramen.

"Chinese" noodle soup

1 bundle of cellophane noodles
1/2 cube of chicken bouillon
1 and 1/2 cups (ish?) boiling water
soy sauce (liberal)
rice vinegar (liberal)
hot chili oil (liberal)

Put noodles in a bowl. Crumble the bouillon, add everything else. Pour in boiling water, and cover for a minute or two. Uncover and stir--at this point, the noodles should be very al dente, and the bouillon fully dissolved. Eat.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

No Good Deed Goes UnPUNished

If I ran a coffee shop, I would have a second "tip jar" next to the regular tip jar, complete with a pile of paper scraps and a bunch of little golf pencils. Then, in addition to some change for my awesome latte and good cheer, people could leave me bits of advice/expertise/heads up.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

They Don't

I'm obsessed with the NYT Vows column, mostly to verify weekly that a) I am still young and b) that, unlike my own parents, people apparently sometimes marry people they did not meet in college. My Vows binges have also lead me to realize that some relationships will never make it into the column:

When the couple met at a party thrown by mutual friends, the bride recalls feeling an instant kinship, but quickly ruled out romance. "I was so comfortable around him, but I was sure he was gay," she laughs.

Sparks flew with their initial meeting, but there was a hitch: "in the morning, I couldn't remember her name!" The groom, no stranger to factchecking, was relieved to discover a stack of magazines in the bathroom. "I checked the address label. Thank goodness for Harpers!"

Infatuated, the bride attended her new boyfriend's improv show. Afterward, the couple faced their first roadblock. "He wasn't funny," she says. "Not at all. I spent the second act wondering what I could possibly say to him after."

Monday, April 19, 2010


In her review of Elizabeth Gilbert's recent marriage memoir/ethnography, Committed, Ariel Levy quips that "one generally doesn’t indulge another person’s emotional processing at this length unless the jabbering is likely to conclude with sex."

Well put.

And, with a few minor alterations, it pretty much sums up my current feelings toward all conversations with pet owners. Specifically, except in the early phases of infatuation during which everything about you is adorable, I don't care about your pet. I don't. I totally believe that your animal is soulful, hilarious, endearing, and brilliant--I bet I'd even like him/her/it in person--but your furry anecdotes aren't making your case. Unless I am so smitten that I've twisted your boyhood love of your dog/cat/fish into evidence that you are capable of such depth of feeling for me, this conversation is boring.

I'm not sure why pets make such uniquely dull conversation, but they really do, and I wish Vogue's Jeffrey Steingarten would stop spending his glossy pages covering the antics of "Sky King," his Manhattanite Golden Retriever. A few months ago, Sky King was featured prominently in a column ostensibly about living on take out. In the April issue, we're treated to Sky King's encounter with stevia, an up-and-coming artificial sweetener. While I haven't read Steingarten's culinary self-portrait, It Must Have Been Something I Ate, the NYT review assures me that Sky King plays an important role here, too. It's boring, it's grating, and I wish he'd ditch the dog tales. His elementary school experience, his wife, his apartment--I have an endless appetite for the details of other people's personal lives. But not their pets.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Appropriate Apparel

Because it is officially spring, and because it is almost-almost warm enough to legitimately do so, I'm wearing a sundress today. It seems to be attracting a lot of male attention. I wish I could revel in this, feeling either attractive and desirable or offended and self-righteous. Instead, I can't shake the certainty that they're all thinking, "that's a little summer-y for mid-April."

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

I was wrong

Okay okay okay. I liked holding the contrarian view that 30 Rock isn't actually that good, but after 13 episodes in two days, I concede. 30 Rock is great. And like everyone else, I think I'd be really great friends with Liz Lemon, too.