Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The most dangerous website

Kayak.com/explore is by far the most dangerous website ever created.

"See where you can go for how much"

Ahhhhhh!!! ;)

Monday, December 20, 2010

Epic hikes to be found everywhere but here

But that's ok, I'm quite content with my concrete jungle and hiking flights of stairs.

Confession time: I watch Sarah Palin's Alaska to be reminded of my similar outdoorsy New Zealand adventures, not to mention I appreciate the sound bytes it gives me to keep refining my impersonation of her.

(HAHA, I love this. Pulled it from The New Yorker.)

But this blog post on Arenal in Costa Rica looks really similar to this utterly spectacular hike I took earlier this year in New Zealand.

See more pictures from the 19.4 kilometer Tongariro Crossing (New Zealand) hike here.

Now back to G-chat with Denmark and Burkina...

Saturday, December 18, 2010


Like, say, for instance, my unforeseen bit of career change after undergrad!

Friday, December 17, 2010

The Vatican: Finland = "Jesus Never Went Here"

You've probably already seen these a few times circling the interwebs, but they're too hilarious not to be shared again. I'm not just copping out by not naming more of my favorites.

Click any of the images to enlarge.

Europe according to the USA

Europe according to the Vatican.

Italy according to [Northern] Italians.

Europe according to Germany.

See all the Mapping Stereotypes here. Maybe I totally want the calendar for Christmas...

What are your favorites?

Or maybe I'm the only one who loves maps and snarky stereotyping like this...

And OUT with the originality

So, while researching wood stain removers for work, I found a hair doppelganger!

Jessica Stroup!

And who is Jessica Stroup, you ask? Don't worry, I myself had to Wikipedia. Apparently she is an actress on the current 90210 show.

All images via Just Jared

I guess Google is delightfully unhelpful sometimes!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Baby step to 6 o'clock

Have you ever seen What About Bob?

Because I have, no less than 30 times.

There is this one scene where (a very quirky and OCD) Bill Murray is sitting in the Gutman's coffee shop on the edge of his seat rocking back and forth with anticipation for Dr. Leeeo Marvin's call, moronically repeating "Baby step to 3 o'clock," even yelling at someone when they go to use the pay phone an hour or so before the expected call ("HEY! NO! I'm expecting a call!").

(aside: Hey, fellow kids who grew up in the 90s- remember when pay phones used to be for normal people?
The best was when you figured out how to avert paying a quarter and 'call collect' so you could figure out why your mom was running late to pick you up or something. Now moms text.
Too bad pay phones pretty much label you a drug dealer now.
Does collect calling still exist?

SO anyways, here I am at my desk, making up an original "Baby Steps" statement...


Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Fig Jam: thanks for showing up!

Fig jam, where have you been all my life?!

I'm currently taking my cheese course early today (haha), and I am newly obsessed with fig jam to accompany.

Fig Newtons were my ABSOLUTE FAVE snack as a kid, so it only makes perfect sense to graduate to this grown up equivalent!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

A snapshot of yesterday

Thank goodness for thorough old school Jewish doctors who prescribe four (4) things, to be taken concurrently, to ease up sinus congestion (I've been temporarily deaf in one ear, for the record).

Then I came home and watched some Wheel of Fortune (the inability to hear in one ear adds to the whole elderly experience, awesomeee). I know exactly when to cue it so it takes approximately 10 minutes to get through. I'm that good (lame)!!!

Then of course, as if I don't stare at a computer screen enough, I had to check Google Reader before bed, the result of which leads me to pose the following question:

What is worse?

That this song has been playing in my head since I watched it last night?


The fact that I actually listened to the whole thing. (Since I'm curious about peoples mannerisms, the residual quiver of Vlad's mouth with each stanza sung was silly enough to me to not look away.)

Damn you Blueberry Hill for creating this hell... and BIGGINS for sharing it. ;)

Memories of Prince Street

"I want to be her!" featured this girl spotted in front of Olive's on Price Street (SoHo), my favorite place to get lunch two summers ago.

But I haven't worn sandals like that since early September...

Reminds me that I need to get down there soon sometime for their Hero sandwich ("sweet and spicy coppa, Genoa salami, aged provolone, olive tapenade, marinated onions, romaine and tomatoes on sourdough").

Monday, December 13, 2010

Storybook magic

Just when I thought I'd hit a little lull of city love, the first flurries of the season arrived today!

It is SO magical. My eyes were a little damp walking home from work today, overcome with enchantment! The city is so so pretty right now, and then to see it glistened all up with snow!


NYC, you da, you da best.

From yesterday, pre-flurry.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

These things I know, this Thursday

the claims about Moroccan oil are true.

i get first-world guilt all the time, but i realize cannot live my life in guilt when i'm given infinite opportunities to do good.

add 'fear' to the above.

Smashbox green foundation primer is brilliant.

i still love to travel, but it's nice to be in a place where i'm not itching to get away out of desperation.

I don't do well with downtime. tranquility stresses me out.

i have really cool cousins.

i finally accepted that i can be hyper critical of myself and others, so i'm working on it with ferocity.

i can be logical to a fault. but at least i'm not irresponsible, right?! ;)

i'm super WASP-Y. This book was hilarious and autobiographical in many ways. also, yuppie is one of the highest compliments you could ever pay me.

I wondered why I could only count on my hands the number of boys I had crushes on growing up in California and at college COMBINED, until I realized that oh, yeah, duh, I'm attracted to preppy-slash-rugged boys like my dad that exist in droves on the northeast corridor.

I have faced a LOT of fears this year! whew!

in my experience running the gamut of hairstyles and color, short hair-ed brunettes have the most fun. ;)

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

I take it as a good sign

that the people around me are already complaining a lot about the weather.

People who have lived in this weather all their lives. Or worse!

Ask me again in February, yes. I'm holding you to it.

But really, it hasn't been bad AT ALL.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Christmas time in the city

I've never had an inkling to decorate a living space (unnecessary mess, that is actually intentional!) so the logistics of how people get their Christmas trees here never occurred to me. But as soon as I saw them on many street corners, I chuckled and said to myself, "Oh, well of course!"

Because On-the-street/At-your-convenient-disposal equals The New York Way which, in this instance, aptly applies to Christmas.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Just can't get enough of Jew!

Jay-Z = 1770s New England

Jay-Z recently wrote a book.

Aaand this article - American Hustlers - comparing the rap mogul to George Washington, is fantastic.

(Yes yes yes, the two books have really good publicists, I realize. Publicity win.)

One of the more enlightening manicure reads I've had!

Which one of these is not like the others?

Had a 10K run this weekend with some friendlies and it was so fun, but pretty cooold.

My time was 55:20/ an 8:55-per-mile pace.

Can YOU spot the Californian wearing three jackets? HAHA

(I always forget how tall I am, thinking people are just a tad below eye level ... then whoa, pictures reveal the truth!)
And uh, you know, I'm totally going to gloat because as you remember the point of my blog is to project my narcissism on you, so my time was 55:20, which is a 8:55 average-per-mile pace) which is about 6 minutes less than the first 10K I did about 2 years ago, around hilly Central Park no less.

Empire State of Mind came on the iPod as I was rounding on the west side of the boat pond for the first glimpse of the Central Park South skyline. I almost cried in happiness, but then my knees cried louder in pain, and I was refrained.

Aww... a bit of Helaman Halls at the finish line. Precious.

I ran it in 55 minutes, 20 seconds!

Of course the most important part of this event was the post-race brunch, where I still found no need to de-layer. haha.

And now I will go hibernate til spring.

Saturday, December 4, 2010


How I don't miss this place.

I had a little panic attack, momentarily awash recalling the really scary girls I knew there. *shudder

Friday, December 3, 2010

But I could never be Jew.

Lately I've been on a shrimp cocktail kick.

(I'm calorically indifferent)

Because I've been in 'recovery' from disordered eating for several years now (it's nothing abnormal when one is prone to OCD), I can't place dietary restrictions on myself.

I've always had a refined culinary palette, so I admit someone with a love affair of candy, soda, and fast food would have a completely different journey. But I, myself, have to allow myself to eat exactly what I want when I want. So this is another way adulthood suits me, because having control over what I pick out is the only way I can healthily function mentally.

BUT... I was curious if there were any outlying nutritional concerns I should be aware of regarding shrimp. I NEVER do this (anymore because I used to be one of those people who fretted over how many egg whites were cooked in a veggie omelette. yeah. It was a huge, lame, destructive waste of time)...

BUT...I found apparently shrimp has an outstanding amount of cholesterol. So I will take this into account, like a sane person.

But that won't stop me from eating that horseradishy cocktail sauce by the spoonful if the moment calls.

As you were.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Shalom. I've missed Jew.

Dear Menorahs,
I didn't realize how incomplete my life had been until I began seeing lots of you lately.

Stay as long as you'd like.

Happy Hannukah.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Because its redeeming quality failed me

Is it sad that what I will miss most about home is the washer/dryer?

Southern California's been abnormally cold (it's year round warmth being the main draw), so I'm really stoked to go back to tropical-by-comparison NYC, a place where I don't question the additional layers.

I go back well fed, cousin-ed, familie-d, and football-ed: still significantly concerned for the mental health of the Boise State kicker, but super amped Peyton Manning threw us two touchdowns plus two other 'regular' interceptions. Thanks buddy!

Really excited to get back to choosing my own food to eat, and the selections on my own DVR. Even Top Gear gets old when you haven't chosen it yourself (Dad).

And let's be honest, YouTube and Facebook stalking sessions this weekend were priceless. I love when you find out that you have mutual friends with relevantly 'famous' people. Better than being stared at by Woody Allen on the street a couple weeks ago.

Monday, November 22, 2010

More vainglory.

So even though I was completely smitten, there were some problems I encountered as I was doing my hair after the first short-hair go around ....

so I just got it cut EVEN MORE and I am even deeper in love!

I didn't want to tuck anything behind my ears and I did NOT want bangs ... and I think we have achieved said requirements.

There is some concern that I may look too androgynous and of course, there's always that knowledge that some guys don't like short haired women, but really, who needs boys when you can look Parisian?!

That's what I thought, too!

I leave tomorrow for Thanksgiving with all my fam + about 20 relatives ... and I already miss New York.
Like, on the verge of tears.
This is so silly.

Is this what love feels like? Ok.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

'I want to go take pictures of me hanging out with starving Africans'


Maybe the funniest Summer Heights High -

like a gay Aussie mockumentary version of Mean Girls -

clip yet.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Good thing he was cuter at age 15

My first crush.

But ever since...hair loss and jowls, anyone agree?

I am loving the New York scrutinization:

Unanswered Questions from the Press Conference via Vanity Fair

Let the dress speculation begin via NY Mag

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

(Can't) Whip My Hair

But I wasn't going for the Willow Smith look anyway...

by request:



Best part: it doesn't need getting used to. I've wanted to do it for about 2 years.

Or maybe I'm just on a haircut high.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Should I add this song to my running playlist?

Everytime I use this mug, I can't resist thinking to myself, "Votes for women, Step in time!"

(around 6:30)

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Carolina Herrera

This morning, I went for a run around Central Park with my friend Liz. There's a Chilean miner running the full NYC marathon tomorrow. Inadequacy would be one way to describe the feeling.

It was freezing. I had to wear 2 jackets.

Then I went to this MoMa exhibit in Queens (hosted in an old school- P.S. 1) with a roommate and her friends.

I have not been sleeping very well lately so I was literally about to pass out from exhaustion walking around indoors, so after a while (this book caught my eye amid my wooziness), my roomie suggested I take the train back to Manhattan and walk around midtown to get fresh air and grab a pastry from Petrossian.

So I got there, and saw there was an area to sit down, and thought, eh, why not.

I got my little cappuccino and a brioche, and then SHE WALKED IN with presumably her husband and another couple.

Of course, dressed immaculately. Off-white coat, understated gray dress, gray tights, black patent heels, her signature huge pearl earrings. Perfect makeup. And whoever her plastic surgeon is, bravo.

She is a beautiful, elegant, and poised woman of opinions, all spoken in Spanish; their 'ceta' accent were VERY subtle, I might add.

They ordered vodka on the rocks and a lot of caviar. She quickly marveled, "DeLI-thi-oso!"

The men carried Swan Lake Playbills.

Topics of conversation included a couple mentions of "Catherine the Great," a "Victoria" (probably a queen), the economy, Save Venice and Feed the Children.

I kept ordering beverage after beverage to keep eavesdropping. It was so silly. And kind of uncomfortable because most of my energy was spent on not gawking at her and redirecting it to a concerned (awkward) "I'm-looking-for-a-friend" look past her out the window. Her husband gave me a couple quizzical looks.

I walked out with Spanish bubbling around in my head. Good to know (some of) it comes back.

But oh, Carolina... Did I mention she has amazing red hexagonal reading glasses with frames about an inch in diameter? SASSAFRASS!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Feels like home

As one friend introduced me to a group of older New Yorkers the other day, "she has just moved here because, in her wisdom from a young age, she has always wanted to."

For the first 11 years of my life, I lived on the same street number as I do now.

For those early years, I lived in a fishbowl-like beach-front house, with about 90:10 ratio of glass windows to walls (or so it seemed), with sliding glass doors and thin blinds for some semblance of privacy.

We ate our morning Cheerios to the view of waves crashing into shore, fell asleep to the same sounds, and used the sand instead of grass as our backyard terrain.

People watching was an evident part of our lifestyle.

And even still, living at the beach was not without its imperfections.

There were riptides in the water, dog poop on the beach from disrespectful owners (my dad would sometimes hunt them down and accost them with plastic bags for the dogs' business - awesome), the rust on our soccer trophies and bikes from the salt air, people smoking cigarettes and weed on the public seawall in front of our patio, the bums all around (aside from the 'beach bums'), the need to wear sunscreen for the omnipresent skin cancer risk.

Sometimes, as my dad relayed in his early mornings, there were naked surfers (undecided whether that is a pro or con of coastal living).

There were always people coming and going within feet of our house.

Even though it's not situated on a beach, this is part of the reason why New York feels so natural to me. Anonymous people everywhere, small cozy spaces, close-proximity living, people watching.... the air filled with smoke (I just pretend it's Europe), the dog poop (ok, still gross), the necessary skin-clearing benzoyl peroxide creams, waking up to the horns and sirens, and falling asleep to them too.

I was the only one of my sisters to ride a bus to school for a few years, as the schools we would later attend did not have them. Perhaps my affinity for public transportation stems from this: for me, the ability to walk anywhere is more liberating than being able to drive myself.

I think it boils down to the fact that you are never isolated here, which I think, looking back, was a weird adjustment when we moved to a home with a 'normal' amount of privacy and stillness.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Pretty darn euphoric

Village Voice did a feature today titled:

"50 Reasons to Be Pretty Damn Euphoric You Live in New York City"

Some of my favorites:

47. There is always someone crazier than you. ALWAYS.

29. Restaurants are as common as single men and women. And equally diverse. And you never have to see either of them again after the initial awkward encounter.

Smart people are the norm, not the exception. (Which doesn't mean they're sane, but at least no one's boring.)

When you fly back into the city after a vacation or business trip, no matter how long you've lived here, you get that butterflies-in-the-stomach feeling.

Jaywalking is an art form.

Subway "prewalking," in which you walk to the exact right spot on the platform to board the train car that will save you the most time upon exit, exists and has a name. Gotta respect. (TOTALLY HAVE BEEN DOING THIS LATELY AND WONDERED IF OTHERS DID TOO)

Monday, November 1, 2010

It's like I live in DC or something

Living in New York City, we get election commercials for not only New York State, but Connecticut AND New Jersey.

It's midterm election overload, to say the least.

SO I thought these were funny.

Biggins buzzed this video:

Rainn Wilson, the actor who plays Dwight on The Office, tweeted this (I wonder if his tweet account is really Method acting practice for playing Dwight):

Shh, don't tell the politicians here I voted absentee for California ...

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Pray for the computer literacy of Burkina Faso

I've done many things for one 23 years young, but sending mail to Burkina Faso is a first.

(I thought the post office would close at 5, but upon arrival saw they were open until 9. I LOVE NEW YORK.)

In case you were wondering...
(it's ok, the USPS lady herself was about 8,000 miles off, thinking it was part of New Guinea)
it is located here:

where my friend Val is a Peace Corps Volunteer teaching computer literacy to the blessed people to have her in Burkina. Like, seriously, who devotes two years of their life to teach people how to do things like hit File-Save. Speaking French. Guts.

Her blog is one of my treasured Reader reads.

I have my usual 'candy' reads I browse through quickly because there are few things more satisfying than to see your Google Reader number descend to "Zero Unread Items"... and then there are her posts, where I "Keep Unread" until I have ample time to pore over every word, savoring what little jewels she shares from her adventures.

And of course, what did I choose to send her but a New York Magazine (a FAVE) covering the greatest topical Halloween costume (of two years ago), Sarah Palin!!!

Highly recommend you subscribe to Val's blog, "Exit Anytime"