31 July 2008

nostalgia: it's delicate, but potent.

So here I am wearing my cute little summer dress and knocking back a few cold ones and grumbling about how Netflix doesn't have Revenge of the Nerds before I go outside to enjoy the 90 degree evening weather. But before I do I've got to post some notable links.

-Ice Cube on Copenhagen bicycle culture. This is notable because Ice is playing Salt Lake on my birthday, and of course I love bikes.

-This funny picture. Dude looks kind of feral in a non threatening way, eh?

-Perhaps the funniest headline I've ever seen-- only because John McCain-- who is just learning to use the internet-- is the one calling someone out of touch. I mean dude, you can't compare a law professor to Britney Spears. This is what this election is coming down to. Yeesh.

-A good
Frank Rich article from Sunday.

-Only in Utah.

-Anybody who had a class with Ted will appreciate

-And finally, I like the rest of humanity I have Mad Men fever. Mad Men is clearly the second best show on television right now, after Weeds. So I present to you a website of limitless value, second only to this one: What Would Don Draper Do? And in fact because I am feeling generous, let's all heave a collective sigh together now:

Whew! I know I feel better!

28 July 2008

omg i love history.

You're welcome.

culled from this post on Gawker

quiet living in the tenement.

Are you surprised by the subject heading? Me too. Xiaoling's family arrived on Friday night and
after a brief chaotic settling in period that made me exceptionally "queen of my castle" cranky, things seem to have reached their equilibrium. While there have been some moments of hiding out at work, I do that anyways, so it's nothing out of the usual. I am still a little miffed that there were no formal introductions but so it goes. I have had absolutely zero interactions with the husband-- clearly he saw me in my primitive pre-coffee stupor and decided to steer clear for his entire journey. The kid is a completely different story.

She is totally quiet-- she has been watching tv since before I got home from work and I haven't heard a peep. Kid is stealthy and clearly used to being on her own. I don't think she speaks very much, if any English, and frankly I was unnerved that there is no way for me to really communicate with her because I really miss being around kids and she's going to be here for a while even if I didn't like kids. But we made a breakthrough last night, when she and her little friend encountered me on the swings at our complex's playground. Before that she had only stared at me with really wide eyes, but she seemed to appreciate that I was out to play too and slightly less of some strange person lurking around the apartment periodically bringing large piles of dishes from my bedroom.

She still stares at me with huge eyes-- this morning I had the yearning for cinnamon toast, so she watched me get out the toaster and go through the whole process. I had no idea I was so interesting (I know, don't let it go to your head Mel, you're not). The funny part was that after I retreated to my room with food and coffee I hear this little quiet knock on my door. In comes my little buddy with my toaster. So we are taking baby steps.

UPDATE: Kid, after much ponderance on the issue, chose to identify herself as Coco. She is making a shit-ton of noise so I have to rescind all of my "she is so perfectly quiet" comments. And it is making me cranky because this is grad student housing, not "make a shit-ton of noise" housing. Ugh. I am the worst kind of spoiled.

UPDATE DEUX: We are speaking English after all. woohoo!

27 July 2008

i love technology.

So earlier in the week I thought my iPod was broken; fortunately it came back to life. Now my phone is broken-- not mortally wounded, but approaching the "being held together by a rubberband and electrical tape" stage (like as soon as I get home). Be advised that I will probably drop it within the next while and it will come apart and I may be unreachable for a bit.

26 July 2008

greeting garlic.

st. louis, part II.

I am still so worn out from my trip! But as a few days have passed I figure I should toss something up here on my St. Louis trip. It was by and large kind of a surreal experience, because being alone things happen and you start to feel like you are just kind of making them up. Granted, I spend a lot of time alone, but I swear my "do whatever I want urge" reaches odd primal levels when I'm traveling and I find myself going a little bit overboard. Nothing sketchy, but I'll get to it.

So I met Phyllis Schlafly. She is nice and old and really did talk about socialism and the recession while I was in the room. The whole experience kind of blew my mind as I wasn't expecting to meet her. Research was quick and very fruitful.

Leaving the EF archives, I decided I'd walk through this nice neighborhood I'd seen on the way over. And then I kept walking, past Washington University and into Forest Park, which is lush and lovely and goes on forever. I hit up the fabulously free Art Museum and then I kept walking. I somehow got it in my head that I wanted to walk all the way to the Arch. Well, St. Louis is a very big place and I made it through St. Louis University (tacky-ist campus ever-- overrun by these awful sculptures) and probably within a half mile or so of the Arch. And then my feet were dead because I'd walked like 9 miles. So I caught a cab and went to the baseball game.

The baseball game was mostly great-- after I got through the insane ticket line and got my beloved Nalgene confiscated at the gate and spent way too long wandering around trying to find a bratzel. I found it, along with the world's largest (and most expensive!) cup of Budweiser Select and made it too my great seats off homeplate. Bratzel was tasty and I am going to figure out how to make them, beer healed my tired soul and the stadium was super nice. I've never been alone at a baseball game, but it was actually really nice, lots of people talked to me and I didn't feel as alone as I would've been if I'd just retreated to the Holiday Inn. Got a ride home from a cabbie who told me if it's not ancient history, it's not history. Whack.

Thursday it was raining and I was slightly crippled from my crazy walk the day before so I took it pretty easy. Visited the Arch and the accompanying museum, say an emotionally manipulative Imax film on Lewis and Clark that made me all "I love America" and caught a pulled pork sandwich and a yummy yummy Shiner Bock at this place called Jake's. Took the Metrolink train from downtown to the airport and despite it being a touch late, had a great flight home.

Perhaps the best part of the flight was, as usual, the drink and listening to This American Life. It was better than usual because the drink was free-- I am not sure if it was because the flight was late or because the stewardess, while looking at my ID was like "Wow, somebody who looks like she's twelve drinking bourbon" was all impressed or something, but free is free!

Made it back just in time to see some of the Pioneer Day fireworks. Pictures are up on facebook and I am really too lazy to post them here, at least right now.

22 July 2008

st. louis research adventure, part I

Greetings from the "Gateway City"! (I had to look that up). What is it the Gateway to? Well I'm about to tell you. Getting to the airport was the easiest ever, thanks to the recently opened TRAX extension to the Central Station transit hub. I got to visit with an old friend I ran into at the airport and the flight was amazingly easy. Architecturally, I think Lambert International Airport is probably the most anticlimactic airport ever-- I really hardly even noticed I was there, and really, could've been anywhere-- it was the most anonymous place. Anyways, I got right into a cab and gave the cabbie one of my ovaries to pay the fare. My hotel sits exactly parallel to some freeway on an intersection that includes a large Shell station, a Hardee's and a shop called "Dirt Cheap Cigarettes." Lots of options for dinner, eh?

So first I try the Hardee's. There are dudes merrily leering at me from their cars in the drivethrough, so it appears open. Door one, locked. Door two, locked. After watching me struggle and quizzically looking at the hours and the people working inside, the Hardee's employee on her smoke break decided to inform me that "the inside is closed." WHY DON'T YOU PUT A SIGN UP, ASSHOLES?! Excuse me. That's not what I said to her. The absurdity of the situation elicited nothing a baffled look on my face because there are just NO WORDS to describe how absurd the situation was and this girl did not see it and I didn't want to explain it to her because the natural manner in which she told me the inside was closed suggested that it was somehow a normative occurance.

Next I decide that maybe I will be blessed by supporting a local business, and appearing as a git'n'split of sorts, I decided to give Dirt Cheap Cigarettes a shot. So I go in and I CAN'T FIND THE FOOD but let me tell you, I can find the the tobacco because this really is a fucking smoke shop! I did find something to eat in their nearly hidden food section-- and they had no tabloids, Mom, honestly-- or booze, sheesh-- but man, the intoxicating smell of the place made me consider taking up the habit! Then I realized that I probably had a contact high or something because the place was full of every kind of tobacco product ever made, and decided against it. So St. Louis-- the Gateway to Smoking! Ok that didn't come out how I thought it did, but it was all very dramatic at the time.

I emerged into the humid night thinking I might check out my options at the Shell station, but instantly wilted in the humidity. My hair was suddenly limp, my skin seemed suddenly greasy, and I had just lost my entire will to live. I returned to my hotel room to eat my tuna "lunch-to-go" and all the White Cheddar Cheez-Its I could handle, wondering tomorrow's trip to the archive might yield.

21 July 2008

20 July 2008

preparing the tenement.

The other night my sweet bacon adoring roommate stopped me in the hallway. She let me know that our other roommate had gone to LA that day and that the next day she too would be going to LA. To meet her husband and daughter who are coming to visit from China. Who, next Friday, will take up residence in our apartment-- the husband for five days, the eight year old for twenty.

UM HELLO?! You are MARRIED!?! You have a CHILD?!!?!

So maybe we don't talk that much-- but after living together for six months, you'd think that might come up. You'd think? It now makes sense that she asked if that picture of my brother and niece was of my husband and child. And the constant weighing-- duh, one must look good for hubbie! Kind of exciting to have an entire family setting up housekeeping in one of our bedrooms! I'm pretty sure there's some student housing policy against that, probably right next to the one prohibiting closets full of beer! So I couldn't really say anything.

Anyways, I stepped into our kitchen this morning and realized that the overlay of filth was now a matter of international perceptions of America on the global scale-- fuuuuuckkkk--- after two hours of scrubbing through permadirt, it sparkles and I can feel a little more like Nixon showing Khrushchev the model kitchen. Rest assured, America-- the worldwide reputation of democracy has once again been preserved!

19 July 2008

one last hurrah.

I have ordered new running shoes. The last time I bought new running shoes, I was living in student housing somewhere else, so it's been a touch too long. Anyways, in hour of my return to plodding up and down hills and everywhere in between, I made my favorite cake. I wanted cupcakes but I don't have any muffin pans (hint, hint, my birthday is coming). At any rate, I have posted this recipe before but have made some major changes and will never, ever look back. It is more dense, less sweet and infinitely more rich but oh so tasty for a person on the verge of starting a fitness programme.

Perfected Chocolate Cake (adapted from here)

  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup HERSHEY'S Cocoa
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup cream
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup strong coffee
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup boiling water
1. Heat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour pan.

2. Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Add eggs, milk, cream, coffee, oil and vanilla; beat on medium speed of mixer 2 minutes. Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Pour batter into prepared pan.

3. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean or cake is springy to touch. Frost.

Perfected Chocolate Frosting

1 stick (1/2 cup) butter or margarine
2/3 cup HERSHEY'S Cocoa
3 or more cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
splash of strong coffee

Melt butter. Stir in cocoa. Alternately add powdered sugar and cream, beating to spreading consistency. Add small amount additional powdered sugar, if needed. Stir in vanilla. About 2 cups frosting. If you want the frosting to be fluffy, wait to make the frosting until just before serving. It collapses over time but is still awesome.

18 July 2008

a bloom for the wandering jew.

I have really fallen in love with this little plant. My advisor tells me that it is called a "wandering Jew" but he said, as a Jew, he prefers "travelling Hebrew." Whatever you call it, how can you not love that tiny little flower! It makes me feel happy.

17 July 2008

jackpot, part two.

File this one under "why I love being a historian":

So I made contact with Mrs. Jackpot this afternoon. When I told her what I was doing my project on, she said in this really endearing, Queens sounding accent: "Why, I didn't know people did their studies on things like that." It was like all at once, she realized her own historicity, that what she had done really mattered to somebody. Her tone changed and she noted that she held her leadership position for twenty-three years, that my girl Phyllis spent the night at her house when she was in town, and that she even knew William Buckley and his brother and she would be so happy to tell me her story. It was like it suddenly occurred to her that she was part of the big picture.

It was the most beautiful little moment. It's so much fun to be in this position to bring to light the efforts of people that would have otherwise been forgotten-- in a way, to be their advocate with the future. Maybe that sounds like a really inflated, hyperbolic kind of a statement, but it's really awesome to feel like what I do has some long term, lasting value.

We should be interviewing by the end of the month! I am so excited.

nothing says good news like "rocky".

More uplifting news on the job market for historians from The Chronicle of Higher Education, no less.

hat tip to PhDinHistory for the link.

all about soul.

I forgot how much I love this song.

15 July 2008

tuesday tuesday.

Ben Stein on the economics of love.
I keep forgetting to tell everybody I know to see Death at a Funeral. Do so!

The Barack presents us with a plan for Iraq. That he says "Unlike Senator McCain" more than once implies to me that he is convinced that he can get pretty far on that one. For example:
"Unlike Senator McCain, who doesn't know how to use the internet..."
"Unlike Senator McCain, who doesn't want equal pay for women or abortion..."
"Unlike Senator McCain, who's wife is so rich that he dines on baby seals for breakfast..."

I mean really, the possibilities are endless

Love his writing style though.


I've noticed my Weeds link is defunct. Here's one for this week's episode.



I am sooooo happy! I forgot how good it feels to finish a paper, even if it is perhaps the most epic piece of cow chips ever written on the topic (such is the magic of writing the only thing ever written on the topic-- it doesn't matter that much). Now I can get back to the research process at a slightly less intense pace and return to doing all the things I'm supposed to be doing-- like going to work-- and all the things I'm good at-- like laying in the grass. And of course, writing terrible haikus:

My paper is done
I say "That wasn't so bad"
I am full of shit

14 July 2008

my name is not susan. or fat tire. or skinny dip.

So today I felt a little crappy. That happens, you know, when you live in a state differing from that of your favorite people and you wake up realizing that a day like this should be spent at a barbecue with those people. So naturally, in a moment of woe, I took all my recyclables to the recycling center and what do I see on top of the recycling bin but a Fat Tire. And I was like, "That is it! that is exactly what I would have at that barbecue!!!"
So I drove to Wyoming.
It was lovely.

Here's what I got:
Here's how it looked:

(new glasses! forthcoming post!!!)
And this is the result:
(And just for the record, I have not been this blonde and tan since 1991.)

12 July 2008

more **asses.

I wrote this post a couple of days ago.

Today was a very special day. Some time ago, under the influence of a particular recently popular substance, I thought it would be a good idea to complete my set of glasses because I realized how much I adored the cute little vessel holding my drink. And I've found it a little embarrassing to serve my guests gin and tonics in juice glasses. Anyways, today my glasses arrived and I had to share with you the aesthetic pleasures of recieving a package from Crate & Barrel.

Alas, the box. Isn't it lovely?:

Behold, the joy of discovering space age packing materials! Exciting!:
Intact! These people sure know how to ship glasses... It's a whole glasses party! So pretty!: The carnage:

I put it all neatly back into the box. One must always consider that the next move is imminent! and packing materials must be hoarded in the storage room accordingly.


I don't know what it is about Fridays, but I swear I am more susceptible to be moved by scenes such as this cute bunny relaxing outside my window:

And videos like this one.

I would like to think it's a reflection of how needy I'm not feeling at the end of a rough week, but I can't say for sure.

11 July 2008

the great liquor store in the sky.

With all the terrible things going on in the world right now*, it is a wonder to me that the author of this article seems surprised that more people are drinking bourbon.

This quote sums up my relationship with the substance beautifully: "You get a taste for bourbon, you don't stop drinking bourbon." So true. It was rough the first time but now it's kind of like drinking caramel.**

*Though being able to hear Wynton Marsalis out my window right now is definitely not one of them.

**Not right now though. There is work to be done.

10 July 2008

speaking my language.

So I once had a friend who went to the Missionary Training Center (MTC). While he turned out to be a total douchebag, before that was apparent, he told me of a time of the day when they practiced their newly learned language in conversation called "Speak your Language" or "S-Y-L-ing." Since then, I have often recognized instances to myself where somebody was really "S-Y-L-ing" or I guess "S-M-L-ing" but the former makes more sense to me despite the grammar error.

Anyways, without further adieu I present to you an occasion of "S-Y-L-ing" on the interwebs: The Pioneer Woman Cooks!
Her approach to chicken salad rocked my world (I haven't tried it but it just looks like the way I was trained) and the rest of the site is amazing.

exactly where did everybody think this gathering was going to take place.

Once again, I present to you: Gail Collins, The Oracle.

UPDATE: Art more powerful than Gail Collins.

09 July 2008

08 July 2008

park therapy.


Sheesh. This whole paper thing is turning out to be a little intense (or maybe it's just me?). It's like a bad stage of the Tour, up and down, up and down. I called a contact that I got from the lady I interviewed yesterday and the woman was ever so eager-- we are scheduled for tomorrow. I went to the library and what they had told me they have-- a folder of newspaper clippings on my topic-- they don't have. Which means it will take a lot longer, which is not that great as my extension is only until Monday. This did not sit well. I did find out that there are three other people making late submittals though, which made me feel a bit better, even if I know I will feel totally tense until I finish it. I talked to a lady today and we are tentatively scheduled to interview for next week, so hopefully I will have four to work with, which isn't too bad. I mailed out my first transcript. I have a phone call scheduled with a cool young professor doing work similar to mine, which I am kind of excited about because I like what she does and how she does it. But seriously, all day it was like I would get a break and then get shit on and then get another break. More breaks than shit, but it sure didn't feel that way.

But this is the crazy part. I have googled this one lady umpteen times. Nobody in the organization really knows her or knew her that well-- she was pretty much before everybody's time. She has virtually zero internet presence-- probably about as much as most people of a certain age have. I did some obituary searches because I thought she might be dead. Talking to her would certainly mean filling in a big gap-- like most of the eighties-- because I have nowhere to start with now that the newspaper thing is going to require more digging. So I google her again and bam! Where there was once one link for her name, there are now two. Somebody in her family posted a word document that was a little autobiography she had written. So I sent an email to the law firm linked on this really, really, barebones site-- all it was was a list of five links. Time passes. I try to temper my grumpyness with some time on the grass at the park (it helped big time-- and am I so lucky to be able to do this? yes). And what happens? Her son emails me back, subject title: "Jackpot". Apparently this lady is alive and kicking and he just knows she would be willing to talk. "Her memory for details frightens me on a daily basis," he wrote. It's like an oral historian's dream. I've got a phone call scheduled with him tomorrow. I almost cried tears of joy.

Sometimes all this digging and trying to make sense of it is really, really hard and I don't think I can keep on with it for six or seven more years because I take it all too personally (it occurred to me today that my advisor won't have to break my spirit because my topic already has), and then I have these Indiana Jones moments where I finally find the holy grail. Good times.

basketball bionics. not just a regular team.

Woohoo, I'm rockin' my one page a day snail pace on the paper-- suuuuck! But anyways, there are more important things in the world, right? (no) Like how absurd it is to call the former Seattle Supersonics the OKC Sonics. Please, please, please don't ever let them become the Utah Jazz of Oklahoma. I mean for goodness sakes, I've never heard any jazz in this state. But then "Utah Mormon Tabernacle Choir" is not a very catchy name for a basketball team. Then again, I suppose the "Oklahoma City WeDon'tFuckin'BuildAirplanesHere" isn't too hip either.

UPDATE: It just occurred to me. There are tons of Sonics in Oklahoma City! WTF was I thinking??!?!?

07 July 2008

pardon the egg salad stains, but i'm in love.

I love that I leave myself these little presents in my notes. It's like sticking your hand in your coat pocket in the fall and finding five bucks.

(this one is from around new years)

title excerpted from the Billy Collins masterpiece "Marginalia"

in defense of carol lynn pearson.

So I woke up in Cranky Town this morning. Today is of course the big deadline, which of course as I told my editor, I would probably not be able to meet and of course that is actually what is happening. So I'm feeling a touch down because I know that some time this afternoon my peer review drafts will start rolling into my inbox and I will still be fucking around on page six. I'm not in entirely bad shape-- I have another interview scheduled for this afternoon and interviews breed more interviews. And Starbuck's sent me a free drink card, which I think will really make everything all better after my afternoon in South Jordan.

But anyways, I was extra cranky and hit up the blogs as I tried to wake up and feel some cheer. I was reading this local blog (which I will not even bother linking to) and some assclown had the tenacity to knock Carol Lynn Pearson. Obviously I'm still not over it. As you may know, the Church has come out against the gay marriage gig in Cali (as they have done before) and naturally a good many people are using the "moral issue" as an excuse to be bigots. I am angry that the Church has their hands in it but am also not surprised-- I mean come on, I do ERA history. I expect no less.

Anyways, somebody knocked Carol Lynn Pearson because apparently she's not sufficiently Mormon for them. Pearson married a man who had been "rehabilitated" by the Church for homosexuality who later came out, ending their marriage. Pearson then cared for him as he died of AIDS in the mid-80's. She is a poet and has counseled many people who have struggled to except their own homosexuality or that of a family member. I really, really respect her work.

Anyways, I read her book
No More Goodbyes: Circling the Wagons Around Our Gay Loved Ones last year. I have a friend who's been through the fires with the issue of homosexuality and Mormonism and put Pearson's book in my hands because it had been meaningful to her and her family. The afternoon I spent reading it was part of a larger awakening in myself-- that I could no longer willingly shut people out, not from the Church, not from God's love and certainly not from my own life. What kills me is that I felt like such a rebel for feeling that way, for even having Pearson's book on my coffee table. I felt pretty sure at the time that she had a better understanding of what Mormonism was supposed to be about than most General Authorities.

I didn't really think of that whole experience factoring into my paradigm shift until this morning when I realized how angry I was that anybody dared speak ill of a woman who did so much to change my thinking. It's crazy how that stuff comes from left field sometimes.

06 July 2008

proof that humanity is still alright.

Somebody has posted every episode of Weeds-- including the new episodes from season four! Now you have no excuses for not being able to agree that it is the best show ever.

05 July 2008

odt, hopeified.

Big Brother sent me these! He is awesome.
Join the movement here: http://obamaspoke.com

04 July 2008

to form a more perfect union.

This brought tears to my eyes. After having to focus on and answer for the disturbing manifestations of the patriotism of these eagles all day, Sam the Eagle was just what I needed.* Happy Fourth, every one.

*In keeping with The Eagles theme, naturally.

don't forget the sunscreen.

I was reading this editorial today in the Times. It references new standards for sunscreen issued last year by the FDA that have yet to be put into effect. Sunscreen is kind of a big deal for me; over the last few summers it's replaced moisturizer in my morning routine. After moving to Utah-- a state with some of the highest rates of skin cancer-- it has replaced moisterizer all together and I slather it on my face every morning.

Anyways, in lieu of the FDA's offerings, the editorial linked to the Environmental Working Group's "Skin Deep" sunscreen database. Mine rated in the top 18% at a moderate level of safety and effectiveness but did not make the recommended list. This is 45 spf, people! I think I will shop for sunscreen a little more carefully in the future.


You Cohen Brothers fans-- I know you're out there-- will love this.

Link from The Triumph of Bullshit, located in the sidebar. If you aren't visiting that site regularly I suggest you do. Such a lovely place, such a lovely face.

03 July 2008

in a new york minute.

SO I promised no more drunk posts. But I've switched from bourbon to coffee so now I can tell you that THIS is the funniest damn thing I've seen since I saw this.

p.s. the Eagles reference is courtesy of the "bayou penpal" who referenced "learn to be still" in a text. what a champ!!!

p.p.s. screw you if you think this whole blog is an inside joke! it is!!! i can't tell you why!!! mwhahahaha

meet me in st. louis.

Well folks, it smells like my research trip to St. Louis is on. Aside from visiting the Arch, the Anheuser-Busch Brewery and going to the Cards game (for the bratzel of course), I'll be checking out some restricted materials related to my girl Phyllis. Hearts of gold, those Eagle Forum ladies.

do you smell bacon.

Ever since a post-family reunion stop at my brother's fantastic in-law's a few weeks ago (did you get that?) I have been craving the combination of bacon and avocado and tomato. We had these awesome grilled chicken sandwiches that included such condiments and ultimately I broke down at the store today and bought all three of those things to go with some whole wheat pitas and the bottle of Evan I bought earlier (which I have also been craving for weeks).

Lately my roommates have been weighing themselves obsessively. We have a scale that was left in our kitchen by the ghost of roommates past, and for whatever reason my sub-one-hundred-pound chums are on it all the time. And weight loss soy shake powder is popping up on the counter next to the uncovered meat and bowls of seaweed (the smell of that, I might add, makes me sick). This worries me a little as my college roommate at my undergrad had some weird body dismorphic things going on (she sang a chorus of "I'm just five pounds away from my perfect weight" as she got thinner and thinner)-- less healthwise, I admit, but mostly because it's annoying. I mean the last thing I want to see as I try to stealthily grab the half gallon of Breyer's from the freezer is someone who already lives on the cabbage soup diet by virtue of regional tastes standing on the scale, pondering her girth.

So today the three of us found ourselves in the kitchen at once, a rare occurrence given their habits of cooking full meals after midnight. I eagerly tossed my really nice, thick cut bacon in a pan and started sizzling away. The girls were up and down from the table refilling their teeny bowls with dark red broth and cabbage and seaweed and Diety knows what else and I was just doing my own thing as the magical fragrance of bacon filled our poorly ventilated kitchen.

As I put the perfectly soft but crispy pieces of bacon on a paper towel, preparing myself for the inevitable delight of my forthcoming sandwich, I sensed a presence over my shoulder. I looked to find Xiaoling staring with wide eyes at my magnificent pile of pork. "That looks delicious," she said softly.

I am tempted to make the scale disappear. I just can't bear to see people live like that!

p.s. the sandwich was the best thing I've eaten since going to Trio last week.