mizrobot: (Default)
2009-10-21 12:53 pm

modern problems

I heard a very inspiring story on NPR this morning about the City of San Francisco’s recycling program. They are mandating composting and currently divert 72% of their waste from landfills. I am really curious about composting at home but Curtis is hesitant because he’s worried about the smell. We don’t have a balcony to put a compost bin on so I’m not really sure how to do it. The most inspiring part of the story is that SF has a goal of sending ZERO WASTE to landfills by 2020. Wow—that is incredible! In contrast, I think the City of Seattle has a goal of diverting 75% of their trash by 2025.

The HEE-larious part was the local lead-in to the story. The guy actually said, “San Francisco is following Seattle’s lead as it imposes mandatory recycling laws…” blah blah blah. Um, what? I don’t think so. We mandated recycling first, but not composting, and Seattle is too worried about hurting people’s feelings by taking away their plastic bags and bottles to be a real leader on the sustainable forefront. Okay, so we do better than many cities, but a lot of it is PR and positioning rather than real radical change. I am still pissed about that plastic bag thing.

So anyway: does anyone here compost in their home without an outside space? When we were kids we just had a “slop bucket” under the sink and we dumped all our leftovers in it to feed the pigs. I don’t have a recollection of problems with smells or bugs, but that seems really gross to me now.

Fun fact: there’s a lot of talk about bio-degradable this and that, but did you know that landfills are designed to not allow anything to degrade? So even bio-degradable trash bags and materials might last for decades if they end up in a landfill.

In other news, I managed to lock myself out of the apartment today. I took my house keys off my ring last night to go for a jog (I tie them to my shoelaces) and stupidly forgot to reattach them. Of course I had to do that when my roomie is out of town! I left a voicemail and an email with the manager but have yet to hear back…it might be a long night.
mizrobot: (Default)
2009-10-14 09:50 am

vaycay

Got back from my trip last night. I had a great, great, great time. This was one of my favorite East Coast trips and I wish it had been longer. Curtis and I had a blast and he even let me drag him around while I did a bit of shopping. We ate a ton of good food and even had a chance to have a nice dinner of oysters and lobster rolls at Brooklyn Fish Camp, this super adorable little restaurant with a very charming back patio that our friend Gabe recommended (he is a lobster roll connoisseur). Being on tour you usually only have time and budget for a slice of pizza so it was a pleasant surprise to have a sweet romantic dinner with my man. Both shows in New York were so good, especially Brooklyn—great attendance, big fans, good spirits, lots of friends.

After New York we drove to Boston. The only snafu of the trip was that we didn’t plan ahead to reserve a hotel. They usually don’t have a problem, but it was some kind of alumni week and everything within a 20 mile radius was booked. My sister and Steve were staying in the city that night because they were running a race in the morning, so they graciously allowed me to crash in their room. It made the most sense logistically because I needed to meet up with my sis in the morning anyway, but I was really sad to say goodbye to Curtis eight hours earlier than planned. It turned out for the best because they didn’t find a hotel until five in the morning, way outside of Boston. Boo. It’s very clichéd and corny to say but absence really does make the heart grow fonder. I hate saying goodbye but I love having someone like him to miss so much.

The next couple of days I hung out with my sister and her husband—more shopping, more great food. We went to this cute flea/farmers market and I got a really cute vintage flower pin that I got compliments on for the rest of the trip. We also went to this apple orchard that had 119 varieties of pre-20th century heirloom apples. They did a tasting and I think we tried about 30 apples overall. Well I didn’t—I got appled out about 25 varieties in. There were also alpacas!

All my flights were miraculously on time, I managed to arrive in Seattle just in time to catch the light rail home—which is very nice and comfortable compared to the bus, if a bit slow. As much fun as it was though, I swear next trip needs to be beachy and relaxing where I don't do anything except lay on a towel and drink a cocktail. Now I’m having some difficulty trying to get back into the swing of work, though I have a ton of shit to catch up on. Somehow I also have to do laundry and catch up on bills and stuff, but I have a volunteer orientation for the NARAL auction tonight and my mom is in town and wants to have dinner tomorrow. BLECH.

Have you ever watched the Hoda and Kathy Lee show? What is up with that? It’s a total disaster. They just talk over each other really loudly and I can’t even tell what’s going on. I can’t believe that meets the bar for being broadcast worthy.
mizrobot: (Default)
2009-08-01 12:25 pm

hutch!

I just bought a hutch from a dude on Craigslist: hutch

I bargained him down too and I am usually really bad at that! It's not like, an heirloom-quality name brand MCM piece but it will be a good home for my Pyrex. The wood's a little beat up so I am trying to decide if I should do a painting this like this or just leave it as is.

The guy selling it was also super rad. I met him at his work, an upholstery shop that specializes in restoring mid-century modern pieces. I told him I had a piece I was considering reupholstering (it's actually Curtis's) and he started getting all excited, showing me pieces and fabric swatches and different foams. I'm sure it would be mass pricey but I think I will send him a picture of the sofa for an estimate.
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2009-07-29 07:50 am

(no subject)

I don't know if you've heard, but it's hot. Cold shower before bed hot, sleeping in the living room to be closest to the fan hot. Curtis and I have gone to the lake two days in a row. I'm kind of scared to go in lakes because I don't really know how to swim--pools are fine because I know how deep the water is at all times, but lakes are murky and scary and unpredictable. But it's the only comfortable place in Seattle right now and unlike the pool, it's free, it doesn't sell out, and you can even drink beer there. I can paddle out to a sunny spot with my noodles and just lazily float and rock up and down with the boat wakes, enjoying the goosebumps from the cold water. Now Curtis is on a hunt for some rafts or inner tubes and maybe this summer will turn me into a water person afterall.

After the lake we had sushi (cold food, air-conditioned restaurant), and went to the Redwood which is allegedly air conditioned but doesn't feel like it. Water balloons were thrown and a beer balloon was created from the tap but not used. Some Swedes who are big Seattle music fans are visiting and asked how we deal with this heat. We say, we don't. Curtis tried to teach them some American insults and then we had to explain the literal definition of a douche bag.

I woke up early this morning to find Curtis in the living room on the sofa. He had apparently sleep-walked out in the living room and it was about 10 degrees cooler than the bedroom with fans going full blast so I was like, shit, I'm sleeping out here too and grabbed a pillow to settle down on the floor. He got up and said, "no honey, you sleep on the sofa, I'll just come back out here when you go to work" and went back in the bedroom. I got about two hours of cool couch slumber, and that is why he is the best boyfriend in the world. Tonight I am considering a camping pad on the balcony.

Today is day two of my InDesign class in an un-air conditioned classroom. I hope I make it.
mizrobot: (Default)
2009-05-26 06:22 pm

Now I'm hungry.

Berlin, Amsterdam, Bruges, Paris, Cologne, Hannover and Berlin again. I got home yesterday. My trip was wonderful. Berlin is a really awesome city--it feels very young and artsy and hip. Bruges was a sidetrack and I'm glad we went. It is very very cute and well preserved! Amsterdam was fine but I wasn't feeling very well so I felt kind of grumpy and that may have colored my experience. I don't know if it was allergies or a cold or what, but I tried to buy some Sudafed-type product at the pharmacy, and the pharmacist told me they don't sell decongestants like that at all in Holland (!) but gave some kind of crazy nose spray. I don't know what this stuff is but it WORKS. After a day it knocked my sinus misery out and I was fine for the rest of the trip. The weather was pretty much perfect the entire time. Really wish I had more time for Paris. It is such a huge city and I feel like we were just kind of getting into the swing of things and feeling slightly more comfortable there when it was time to go. Just means I'll have to go back. :)

Europe loves its gummy candies. One of my favorite candies ever is Haribo Fizzy Cola--NOT the regular ones, the fizzy ones. For some reason they are kind of hard to find around here but Fizzy Cola-type candy is EVERYWHERE in Europe. I also ate cola flavored Mentos.

Macarons and lemon tart in Paris: check. Creme Brulee: check. Bakery-fresh baguette: check. Snails, crepes, more ham than I've ever ate in my life: check. In Holland a thing is to put chocolate sprinkles or shavings on buttered bread for breakfast. I think that's what you were supposed to do, anyway. Curtis laughed at me for slipping extra boxes of chocolate shavings and little individual packets on spreadable gouda from the breakfast buffet at the hotel. We poked around in supermarkets and made a little spread of meat and cheese one night in our hotel room. In Bruges I bought a little box of assorted Belgian chocolates from a shop that actually survived my overly-warm flight home fairly well. I was going to try to bring some of the macarons home but they were not faring well at all with the passage of time and looked sadder everyday, so we ate them all fairly quickly. Sorry. :) Cocktails are not that great there because they don't believe in much ice so I drank a lot of beer and wine. Also fell in love with a gyro-type item called a doner kebap, which is very good street food. Sausage and schnitzel and red cabbage of course.

The best part was getting to hang out with Curtis after being apart for a month. He's my best travel buddy.

Here's my photos, which probably tell a better story than my travel-addled brain can do at the moment: http://www.flickr.com/photos/maggies/sets/72157618832582638/
mizrobot: (Default)
2009-05-15 02:14 pm

curb day no way!

Ugh, I heard a story on the radio this morning about a horrible idea called "Curb Day." You know how everyone leaves free furniture on the sidewalk for the taking? The idea is that if everyone does it on the same day, it will be like one giant yard sale. I think this is terrible because rarely does anything GOOD get left on the curb. They might as well call it "stuff I'm too lazy/cheap to haul to the dump" day because that's all it is, couched in some kind of phony free-gan recycling ethos. Take the turquoise pleather sofa outside my apartment building that is getting progressively dirtier and more ripped with each week. Today I noticed someone dumped their half-full cup of coffee on it too. Not to your liking? There's a floral number on the next block over, covered in a layer of trash. I appreciate that the person who dumped their mattress on Bellevue a few months ago wrapped it in plastic and wrote DO NOT USE-BUGS!!!! all over it but if you are going to go to that trouble, how about properly disposing of your mangy mattress instead of letting your bedbugs free on the rest of us? Seattle doesn't have any kind of large trash pickup day, as far as I know, and furniture that gets dumped in the alley or on the sidewalk can and will often just sit there for months and months. It really pisses me off.

That's all. I am leaving tomorrow! I had a lovely Pho lunch with Joe and now I need to do my laundry.
mizrobot: (Default)
2009-05-11 11:23 am

(no subject)

Everything is coming together nicely for my trip. I stayed up entirely too late last night researching hotels and sending emails to a bunch of places in Paris to see about availability. There is one night where I think we will wing it because we'll be traveling between cities and I'm not sure where we'll land.

I'm kind of miffed because I booked a room at a hotel Berlin near the venue where GA is playing on the first night I arrive on the recommendation of their European booker, but then I found this really cute hotel/hostel with great reviews that's cheaper and closer! But I got some kind of internet discount rate at the other place so its non-refundable. I should have done my own research, grrr. So on our last night we are also in Berlin and I'm wondering if I should book us there or be practical and get a room close to the airport since my flight is at 9:30am. Cute/fun or practical...that is always the dilemma, isn't it? I guess the point is you're not supposed to stay in your room that much anyway so maybe it doesn't matter.

I called all my credit cards to put a travel alert on my accounts, asked the pharmacy to get me prescriptions early, transferred money from savings and am basically kicking ass on my to-do list.

I ate, drank and spent way too much this weekend and now I feel like a bloated broke moocow. It was fun though.
mizrobot: (Default)
2009-04-27 09:58 am

three more weeks!!!

Aw, I just talked to Curtis on the phone for the first time since he left over a week ago. He got a pre-paid international cell phone so now we can talk more often. I MISS MY BOYFRIEND.
mizrobot: (Default)
2009-04-18 08:36 pm

(no subject)

GA is doing two covers on their tour--Doctor my Eyes by Jackson Browne and Indoor Fireworks by Elvis Costello. Last night I heard Doctor My Eyes on the overhead speakers at the grocery store and this afternoon I heard Elvis Costello on stupid Prairie Home Stupidface (a show I HATE, but am always listening to for some reason) playing Indoor Fireworks!!!!!! Is that weird? I think so.

Today I went on a picnic, painted my nails, made a Button it up Necklace and then screwed up my nails. Busy day.

necklace
mizrobot: (Default)
2009-03-30 10:11 am

yay!

I had the best birthday weekend. On Thursday I had a little party at the Redwood and so many people showed up and I was so touched! All my friends are too good to me. Curtis got me roses and made me a lemon birthday cake. He is the best.

Vegas was a blast but I am exhausted. The highlight reel:
-Dinner at Bouchon (Thomas Keller). I ate skate in a brown butter/veal stock sauce with fried squash blossoms and creme brulee for dessert.
-getting a 10% discount on our rental car as our "wedding gift" after we told the guy we were getting hitched to get out of paying the additional driver fee.
-Seeing old Vegas/Fremont Street for the first time and scoping out the neon sign graveyard (unfortunately we couldn't get in--appointment only--but Curtis took pictures over the fence).
-a bottle of Moet White Star and a beautiful bouquet of flowers waiting for me in our room courtesy of my dad and his girlfriend
-awesome pool and beautiful weather
-international soda tasting at the Coke store
-Winning $50 at Big Spin and the slots (and losing it all the next day)
-Seeing my sister and Steve!

I should used to it by now but I'm always amazed at how much fun Curtis and I have together. I just love being with him all the time and traveling with him is so super fun. As always, though, I feel kind of gross after a weekend in Vegas. All I want now are some fresh veggies, which don't seem to exist there, and a good sleep. It didn't help that our flight was delayed over two hours and I didn't get home until after 1am (and was at work at 8:40). The Vegas airport is the WORST.
mizrobot: (Default)
2009-03-26 03:09 pm

Don't forget, like Asa!

I am having my Almost Birthday Party tonight! 8pm, Redwood. See you there.

xoxo
mizrobot: (Default)
2009-03-23 02:29 pm

weekend

It seems like Vitamin D is the new thing to be thinking about. My doctor tested me for it a couple weeks ago, which I have never had done before, and while I was waiting for my results it came up in conversation numerous times. I didn't get tested for any other vitamins so what's the big deal about this one?

It turns out I am so Vitamin D-ficient (get it?!?) that she put me on a prescription! I have to take one mega-pill a week for ten weeks and get retested. Then I can go on a normal drugstore variety if my levels are up to snuff. I wonder if it is the answer to my problems: Vitamin D.

- - -

Curtis and I had a Burien/White Center adventure on Saturday for Mexican food, Dairy Queen, and the best thrift store scores I've made in a long time: Fire King, Pyrex and Hazel Atlas pieces (the milk glass triumvirate); an Expo 86 commemorative plate (I attended when I was a kid); a sexy business woman Versace skirt for $5; cute basic black Hush Puppies flats for $4; a beautiful pink vintage slip with great kickpleats; and a funny mustard jar that is shaped like a clock. Now I just have to find a place for all these kitchenwares. I need to take some pictures but it's not quite light enough yet by the time I get home.
mizrobot: (Default)
2009-03-20 08:22 pm

valuable lessons

Well I found a suit. I was having a hard time finding anything that fit and was feeling really frustrated and about to give up when I finally decided to ask a salesperson for help. Joshua saved my life. I was all, "I don't know how suits are supposed to fit!" and he said, "Don't worry, I have a good eye for it." He picked out a bunch of stuff for me to try on and every single thing was on sale and now I have a suit and two blouses.

I can be very independent and stubborn and it is good to remember that sometimes it's best just to ask for help.
mizrobot: (smooch)
2009-03-12 10:55 am

button frenzy

Thanks to Susan and her lovely book Button it Up and Linda and her inspiring crafts for putting a burning yern for buttons in me, I spent a good hour and a half last night browsing vintage buttons on Etsy and Ebay. Because you know, I really need something else to collect. I got some really cute ones for a specific project and now I have a new something to scout out at thrift stores. At least buttons are small. It's so nice to feel inspired to make some crafts and to have lots of ideas running through my head again. It's been awhile! Thank you, ladies. I also bought some plastic flowers for a necklace idea and if it turns out I'll probably sell those.
mizrobot: (RM and PS)
2009-03-09 10:08 am

dungeness crab dinner

Crab dinner

There is nothing easier than a crab dinner. The crabs come out of the refrigerator about 20 minutes to dinner. A salad is tossed and some butter is melted. Throw together a little vinaigrette with some oil and balsamic and Dijon mustard on hand, slice a few rounds of a chewy baguette and that's about it. Even a plate is going too far. We cut up paper bags, laid them on the table under our crabs and folded them up and threw them away when we were done. The crab shells went in a bowl to be used for seafood stock, later. This might have been the best meal I ever made, if you can call it cooking.

Crab dinner

The rest of the weekend was about food too--a giant pot of white bean chili on Saturday to share with friends, a mess of Easter candy, a double date to a suburban salad bar on Sunday. This week I have to reel it back in and be more frugal. Things are more uncertain than ever and there's a lot of life maintenance I want to take care of this month--shoe repairs, dry cleaning, hair, doctor visits--while I know I have the resources to do so, because next month it could all change.
mizrobot: (Default)
2009-03-06 08:44 am

crabby

Someone mentioned the Dugneness Spit at poetry group on Monday and it sounded like an intriguing nature walk, so I looked it up the next day, which led me to reading about dungeness crab, which made me really want to buy and eat one. I've never done that before. Have you? I feel ashamed, having grown up so close to the Dungeness's namesake. I guess you buy them pre-cooked and everything (they boil them on the ship because they go bad rapidly when you take them out of their ocean home). So Curtis and I are having a crab feast tonight! I am going to go pick up my crab at the market today. I also really want to go to this: http://www.crabfestival.org.

CRAB GRAB.
mizrobot: (Default)
2009-02-27 03:47 pm

Five things meme

1. Chickens
When I was a kid we had a sort of hobby farm with pigs, horses and chickens and I have fond memories of them and of eating farm fresh eggs. A few years ago I found out you were allowed to keep up to three chickens within the city limits, providing you have a certain amount of outdoor space and a coop, or something and I became fixated on the idea of owning a city chicken. There is a community center in town that even offers an urban chicken class to teach you how to keep them. I still like to think that when I retire I will have chickens and maybe a goat. I love the idea of participating in the production of my own food too. It’s something that really clicks with me, although it is hard to do in an apartment, and I think this is a leftover effect from my farm upbringing.

If I had chickens I would give all my friends eggs and I would name one Henrietta after this book we had as kids. And yes I still eat chicken too.

2. Tacoma
I went to college in Tacoma and so spent some of my most formative years there. Tacoma gets a bad rap but I think it is super cool. It has a rad art scene (or it did when I lived there anyway); better thrift stores, two great waterfronts (Ruston and Thea Foss); a gigantic park with a big old growth forest, a logging museum and a zoo with polar bears and beluga whales, neither of which may be found in Seattle (Point Defiance); more of a preservationist attitude towards old buildings than Seattle; and is more affordable overall. You know the crazy-looking gorgeous hotel-turned high school in 10 Things I Hate About You? That’s Stadium High in Tacoma. I like that it is slightly dingier and less polished than Seattle. As Neko Case says, it is the dusty old jewel of the South Puget Sound! All-American City!

3. Pickling
I got into pickling this year as a good basic intro to canning. I like the idea of canning and stocking a pantry and being old-timey with my food (see chickens above). I made a lot fo jam when I was a kid so I thought this would be a good thing to try next. And who doesn’t like pickles, right? Well. I have a confession. The pickles we made did not turn out super awesome. They are all kind of mushy! I don’t know what I did wrong. I have to try again next year. Meh!

4. Poetry
I just saw Donald Hall read a couple weeks ago and he spoke of how at age 14 he chose to dedicate himself to poetry and never looked back. Well I wish I could share a similarly-romantic story but in truth I discovered poetry by accident. I always looked down on it as a forum for angsty teens, goddess-worshiping lady hippies in touch with the cycles of the moon and other overly-emotional overwrought writers. As a creative writing major I saw myself focusing on New Yorker-style creative fiction—you know, IMPORTANT writing. One semester I needed a writing credit and my friend was taking the poetry workshop. She assured me it would be easy—you only had to turn in a certain amount of work to get a good grade, the poems didn’t have to be GOOD. And it fit into my schedule. So I took the class. Turned out I loved it, it came fairly easily, and I was good at it. After college I took a class and got hooked into the scene, and did some readings. My favorite moment was reading my poetry at the opening of a city council meeting.

I am now in a poetry workshop group that has been meeting for about five years, and I am in a pretty frustrating writers-block phase where I am not producing much, and I’m not so involved anymore, but I still love poetry.

5. Fonts
I became interested in typography during college when I took a class called The Art of the Book, and learned all about type and letterpress printing. I am by no means an expert but I love learning about it and reading about it. I like how typography is almost a science in a way—it’s an art, but it’s so very exact and precise. I also like that it is the perfect combination of design and words, two of my favorite things. I had the opportunity to go to TypeCon a couple years ago and spent three days immersed in type talk. I also got to see the premiere of Helvetica the movie! Interestingly enough, one of the speakers was the man who owns the firm where I work. He has a special interest in typography, calligraphy and letters in general. I had no idea that my career would take me this close to typography but there you go.

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If you want to do this meme post a comment and I will tell you five things that make me think of you.