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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Authorizing Food

From this cute article on Recipes and Household Tips from Literary Figures via Brainpickings.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Saturday Night Living

Joyce made toasty kale, Mediterranean style quinoa with wine and butter marinated sole, and a carousel of spiced and candied carrots.
She has really been killing it, night after night with her healthy culinary exploits.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Friday, May 18, 2012

I'm Mad As Hell!

I don't have to tell you things are bad. Everybody knows things are bad. It's a depression. Everybody's out of work or scared of losing their job. The dollar buys a nickel's worth, banks are going bust, shopkeepers keep a gun under the counter. Punks are running wild in the street and there's nobody anywhere who seems to know what to do, and there's no end to it. We know the air is unfit to breathe and our food is unfit to eat, and we sit watching our TV's while some local newscaster tells us that today we had fifteen homicides and sixty-three violent crimes, as if that's the way it's supposed to be. We know things are bad - worse than bad. They're crazy. It's like everything everywhere is going crazy, so we don't go out anymore. We sit in the house, and slowly the world we are living in is getting smaller, and all we say is, 'Please, at least leave us alone in our living rooms. Let me have my toaster and my TV and my steel-belted radials and I won't say anything. Just leave us alone.' Well, I'm not gonna leave you alone. I want you to get mad! I don't want you to protest. I don't want you to riot - I don't want you to write to your congressman because I wouldn't know what to tell you to write. I don't know what to do about the depression and the inflation and the Russians and the crime in the street. All I know is that first you've got to get mad. You've got to say, 'I'm a HUMAN BEING, God damn it! My life has VALUE!' So I want you to get up now. I want all of you to get up out of your chairs. I want you to get up right now and go to the window. Open it, and stick your head out, and yell, 'I'M AS MAD AS HELL, AND I'M NOT GOING TO TAKE THIS ANYMORE!' I want you to get up right now, sit up, go to your windows, open them and stick your head out and yell - 'I'm as mad as hell and I'm not going to take this anymore!' Things have got to change. But first, you've gotta get mad!... You've got to say, 'I'm as mad as hell, and I'm not going to take this anymore!' Then we'll figure out what to do about the depression and the inflation and the oil crisis. But first get up out of your chairs, open the window, stick your head out, and yell, and say it: "I'M AS MAD AS HELL, AND I'M NOT GOING TO TAKE THIS ANYMORE!"

- Howard Beale, Network (dir. Sidney Lumet, 1976)

J'adore "J'adore"

Kind of obsessed with this perfume, J'adore by Christian Dior.  I never would have thought to wear it since I choose perfumes in a very specific, inductive way, rather than a more experimental, vast search for a certain smell type of way (I, by chance, got it in a gift bag).  I described it as "soft ferocity reminiscent of an elegant night turned tickle fight."  I've never had a perfume that so strongly reminded me of an event as much as this one.  Usually something smells really sexy, or clean, or like an outdoor garden to me, but this one has a sense of action about it...  It's really something else.

Thursday, May 17, 2012


Illustration for Edgar Allen Poe's Morella.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

On Dabbling and Malice

All 4 of you who read this may know about my long ago concern with specialization- more specifically, the lack of it in my life.  Today's subway passage to get the best reactions out of me were the following ditties from Pensées.  Pascal writes:

Since we cannot be universal and know all that is to be known of everything, we ought to know a little about everything.  For it is far better to know something about everything than to know all about one thing.  This universality is the best.  If we can have both, still better; but if we must choose, we ought to choose the former.  And the world feels this and does so; for the world is often a good judge.  
Then again, I don't think they had specialized positions like brand identity & logo designer and 2nd 2nd AD in the 1620s... *back to the puzzled look on my face*

This one also gripped me:

Man loves malice, but not against one-eyed men nor the unfortunate, but against the fortunate and proud.  People are mistaken in thinking otherwise.
Update (a day later):  Today I woke up with this train of thought:  being proud of your own culture is good, but looking out for all humans is better... what about looking out for other animals?  Then I started considering my arguments against vegetarianism, and I realized major flaws in them.  I don't litter in public because I'm just "one person" and won't make a difference, I don't not give homeless people money from time to time even though I know it won't solve the problem of homelessness, so why do I still eat meat if I believe there's so much that's wrong about killing animals in cruel ways when we really don't have to, knowing there are so many other alternatives to eating meat?  I continued along this train of thought, and then remembered my post from last night.  The second one above.

I've been waking up feeling great about myself lately.  Confident. Inspired.  Grateful.  Could there be a connection between feeling good and not needing meat? Not having to subconsciously prey on another animal's meat to feel better about myself? Just some food for thought...

Monday, May 14, 2012

Really Feelin' This Bookstore In Trenton

After a dejected return from the bookstore where my budget didn't allow for any affordable De Maupassant (all of the short story collections were in the $40.00 range), I quickly remembered this thoughtful dude who reached out circa B*tches in Bookshops week.  I hit him up, and not only did he have an affordable short story collection of used De Maupassant, but a good edition and for only $9.00!

Not in Trenton?  They're on-line!

Check them out if you're on the hunt for a hard to find book: Classics Used and Rare Books

All Kinds of Anti-Hemingway

Fear of death increases in exact proportion to increase in wealth.
I'd like to add to this, that fear of death increases in exact proportion to a desire to create.

Then in this Paris Review interview he says the best writing comes from being in love.  I was in love once and I couldn't write a thing.  I think the best writing comes from break ups.  To each their own...  What school of thought are you?

This one, however, I adore:
Decadence is a difficult word to use since it has become little more than a term of abuse applied by critics to anything they do not yet understand or which seems to differ from their moral concepts. 

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Beethoven - String Quartet 15, Op.132

If you're short on time, begin at 19:00, it's just sublime. It's been a sort of daily prayer for me these days after seeing my friends' quartet play it at Alice Tully last Tuesday.
They were brilliant. It was an experience, that although I can't offer it to you live and in all it's glory, I'd like to extend somehow:

After "Patience (After Sebald)"

An excerpt from an e-mail I just wrote after seeing the film Patience (After Sebald), a film by Grant Gee about the writer W.G. Sebald and The Rings of Saturn.  I felt this was worth sharing because I ended up circling around the way I normally do when I write on Hecho/Visto, and also there was a circling-back-and-connection-making theme that I found in Patience:

I was supposed to read The Rings of Saturn in January, as my holiday read because I was going to London and then parts of Ireland. I was there for three weeks during December-January, and thought it'd be an appropriate read as research about a story I wanted to write about a pilgrimage last year, and I thought since I was heading over to England, it'd be... appropriate? Anyway, I ended up reading Portrait of the Young Man As An Artist for many, many, many other reasons, but I'll be sure to pick The Rings of Saturn up tomorrow! 
 More specifically about my experience watching Patience - I felt like I was in a dream with all sorts of signs, mixed in were all of these conversations and experiences I've had recently, like I was being pointed in a certain direction, which I feel might also consistent with the film and book's DNA- this sort of opening your ears and eyes to the the patterns and hints life throws at you... Convos include, but not limited to the following topics: Lots of Lacan, lots about the conflict between individuality and inevitable interconnectedness with others, also this feeling of wanting to go somewhere unfamiliar this summer for a long enough time that I forget where I am.... And so many other things, but those come to mind the fastest. But yes- I love that the film ended up consisting of what I imagine to be the DNA of Sebald's novel... the meandering, linking connections, and this kind of philosophical/psychological spirituality (what a lame label, but bear with me). It was a terrific journey...
I had just seen Gerhard Richter Painting [at Film Forum] a couple of days ago, and there's an image in that film that stayed in my brain... It's one of a couple of images that inspires Richter, and it's of piles of bodies having been gassed at one of the concentration camps, with people standing nearby them, very business-as-usual like. I felt like it could have been an image in Patience. It's significant for me, and I think even purposeful, to make that connection between my last experience in that same theater with the image in the Richter movie and the images in Patience... part of this continuous investigation of I don't know what exactly yet.  In a kind of Sebaldian turn of events, I saw the Gerhard Richter retrospective during my aforementioned stay in London this past January. Doesn't sound very important, but I think that for some reason it might be! 

An extra note:  I realized after posting this, that the novel resulting from Sebald's walk is very similar to a Richter painting.  Both are profound examples and inspiration for how I feel I should not only make art, but approach life: respond, meander, get lost, stop to look, listen and make connections, and follow directions you have an uncontrollable and inexplicable affinity to.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Dalkey Dreamin'

The foggy weather from yesterday made me miss Ireland, Dalkey in particular. I miss the flat parts where the water meets the sand. This yearning has inspired me to share some of my favorite Irish sayings:

You permit what you promote.(self explanatory, no?)
Better the devil you know. (self explanatory)
That's a fine doorful of woman. (admiration of a larger than average woman)
No great shakes... (nothing too exciting)
I'll learn ya... (I'll teach you a lesson)
The sweetest way something is is when you're grabbing it from each other!

Down and Out in New York City

I just bought Down and Out in Paris and London by George Orwell. I wish I had purchased this edition instead though:

Ah, superficialities...

Update:  And here is a playlist I've made inspired by reading this well-timed adventure.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Kamila Stösslová, 1917

Even though the movements will be all over the place, you will get the idea. Here, Janacek opens his heart for a woman (albeit 38 years his junior), the same way we all have at one point or another. He wrote her over 700 letters, and although she never left her husband for him and was pretty ambivalent in response to Janacek's affection, Kamila engaged and eventually requested her end of the correspondence to be burned. She was with him when he died in 1928.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Budapest String Quartet

Photo cred, Gjon Mili for Life Magazine

Rest In Peace, Maurice Sendak

This comment from Maurice Sendak's New York Times obituary just made me cry:

Inspired by the great Sendak at three years old, my son set a cloth doll on fire in the toaster oven and tearfully explained his plan: "I'll eat you up I love you so".

Monday, May 7, 2012

Mad Madam Mim

It's me! I'm going be Mim fo' Halloween.

I Want A Nest

One of my favorite things to do is to turn my bed into a nest, but now I think I need to really make it happen on a grander scale.

Some ideas:

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Dinner with Music

Shitake mushroom & arugula salad with roasted garlic and lemon dressing.
Prosciutto tortellini with cinnamon & nutmeg marscapone sauce.
Lulu Sauvignon blanc (Domaine Jacky Marteau).

Saturday Strolls, Saturday Slumber Parties

I spent the day strolling around lazily with Dimpoe, playing chess at the park, at the diner over coffee and grilled cheese, on my bed, on my desk... We picked flowers and I made the bouquet below. We painted our nails, and I painted a star on her thumb with an opposite color. I painted mine pea green, hers were nude (Tickle Me Francey). I baked brownies and we finished a bottle of a most fantastic Sauvignon Blanc (Domaine Jacky Marteau, Lulu- highly recommended). We listened to Drake and Janacek string quartets, then to my Africa playlist as I danced around with my freshly painted nails. My room smells like flowers now, and I couldn't be happier, laying in bed reading Hemingway and soon Guermantes Way.

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I'm an LA transplant now living in Brooklyn. I develop film projects by day, write at night, and have a dangerous predilection for vintage Robinson Golluber scarves- this blog serves as a tiny window to everything else I do when I'm not satisfying those first three passions. I'm trying to blog more and tweet less @annabelleqv. What about you?


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