Thursday, April 26, 2007

the sunlight streaming into my room, an uninvited but not a wholly unpleasant guest. i breathe, rouse; have recovered an energy that's been unleashed as springtime's warmth finally creeps into an otherwise dreary winter-weary boston. this past weekend of glorious weather, as i shared an eggy brunch on a sunny patio, indulged in the dog-parade sidewalks of south end, sampled grilled succulent bivalves with dear friends... i could not have been happier to reclaim that resurgence of exuberance. the cocoon has been broken; i emerge hopeful (though probably a bit disheveled and pale), blindingly swimming the currents of the human instinct.

everything now, a bit more saturated; impetuous; intoxicating. a greenness in the air.

i've been sort of quiet lately on the blog, not only because i'm channeling most of my voice in the print (big paper!) and mobile media (small screen!) realms, but also because i've been going out a lot more in the city. attending live music (amiina, caspian, the books, junior boys, [upcoming] amon tobin), films (the lives of others, boston turkish film festival, independent film festival of boston), events (karl cronin + modern dance friends at the ica, the define-a-thon at the brattle, miss witherspoon at the lyric stage).

it's also been a mega re-prioritization of spending time with the people i care about. impromptu drop-ins for tea and cake, climb the stairs, share a glass of wine, espresso at midnight, sidewalk rendezvous. this warmth within is ever growing. it's unexpected; perhaps a mixture of sxsw and professional/personal transitions has fueled me in these directions. as if to clarify, i'm not waiting anymore...

some grainy, gratuitous snapshots of certainly, sir...

and san serac...

at the middle east downstairs, opening for synth-pop darlings junior boys.

a quickie roundup of the concert:

- certainly, sir was awesome as usual (go brodeur! galusha! hubben!); there were a couple disturbingly obsessed young groupies who desperately clung to the stage railing and all but threw their manly panties on stage. at the end of the set (one so hotttz that brodeur's glasses slipped off), the nubile groupies clamoured to beseech galusha for his white drummer-drenched sweatband in exchange for a piece of gum. jeff agreed, the swap proved successful, the kids blissfully rubbed their faces in the moist terry, galusha snapped his gum with pride.

- there is nothing that can prepare you for san serac's live performance. he literally is like transported from another era; planet, perhaps. a spastic fantastic blend of prince, a random guy in tijuana, david bowie, and napoleon dynamite, he contorted himself into a ravenously disco-bleeding slackjawed-drum-pad-action tizzy. he moves. desperate clutches at the microphone, horrendous leaps across the stage, eyes oscillating between ecstatic blaze and cold focus. near the end he's like 'can i turn the lights off up here [the stage]? yeah, yeah, all the way. these lights are weighing me DOWN." then he leapt and crooned and sweat in the LED-studded darkness. it was the best performance i have seen all year. DONT LOSE THE MAGIC, SERAC.

- junior boys were, well, catchy. i happened to see them last fall at the middle east UPstairs, and they blew me away back then with their natty head-to-toe white suits, smiles + laughter, an earnest groove. but here, in the downstairs, with a writhing fan club, a sound system that literally vibrated everything i ever wanted to know about my internal organs, and a seriously tired-sounding junior boys, i actually left the concert early. perhaps my high expectations (and also pseudo-solo status) set me up for a premature night. even with earplugs, the bass physically overwhelmed me, and honestly they just SOUNDED like their CD. except the singing was out of tune, the inter-song chatter seemed tame and cliche, and perhaps san serac sucked all the raw energy out of the place. perhaps if i had a companion with whom to exchange furious discourse, cling onto, meander upstairs for tabbouleh; things would have been different.

in more amazing news, because i do happen to have a healthy trove of opportunistic food photographs, and just because i can, here's a bevy of delicious things:

a righteous piling of fresh greens, eye-poppingly purple potatoes, and salty hairy anchovies (earnestly yummy) give the salade nicoise at les zygomates awesome cred. i always thought that the tuna in such a salad at other typical restaurants is the chunk-light-canned type, but here (ooh la la, monsieur) a supple tuna steak is seared around the outside, leaving the inside silky raw, and handcut into dapper slices. and egg yolks always make me happy. that is just a given. i'm glad i have photographs from our meal, because this lunch was particularly memorable on many levels.

people always wonder what i do when i'm freewheeling on my research/writing days. well, for one thing, i push buttons on my laptop a lot. also, eating things is right up there. on a drizzly, grey morning, i was craving (nay, feeling downright withdrawal) a hot bowl of noodle soup: the perfect antidote for a cloud-induced brood, exhaustion from shivering and wiping the raindrops from vulnerable skin. the szechuan beef soup from mary chung's is like a warm satin-wool comforter wrapped around your shoulders. steaming, sumptuous, utterly beefy, soul-soothingly indulgent. chopsticks and spoon are in immediate view, and for a moment, i am cured of the damp disease.

fast forward a bit. i took the opportunity before going to the constants / on fire / caspians concert at the the paradise a couple weeks ago to ravage the asian food court at everyone's favourite chinese superdupermarket, super 88. thai, vietnamese, indonesian, malaysian, indian, korean, japanese, cantonese, yummmm in full circle. somehow (perhaps it is my natural disposition?) a warm bowl of comfort was also in the cards for the evening. i ordered the 'spicy beef noodle soup' from pho viet and simultaneously munched on peanut-sauce-dipped summer rolls. the crunch of mint makes for instant tantalization. let it be known: i was def tantalized.

here's miss ryan rose (fellow co-conspirator at 80108, otherwise known as our fearless editor) at lucky's lounge in fort point one day after work. i covered lucky's in one of my latest drinky pieces for the dig. it's kitsch, it's fun, it's pricey; i think of it as a south boston version of inman's own b-side lounge's daddy-o-ness mixed with a bit of portland's doug fir's wood-grained fireplace aesthetic. the impossible deliciousness of the toasted coconut cocktail (frangelico!) will linger with you...

i have learned all beautiful things resurface in unexpected ways.

Friday, April 20, 2007

i must confess i'm jaded in terms of internet content, but i have to say this website really goes the exceptional mile:!

For several years I was a dietary vegan. I was considering a long trek in the Congo with an ethnomusicologist -- also a strict vegetarian -- and he asked me would I eat meat if my life depended on it? I said no, but I realize that was foolish of me -- I am an animal and it's my instinct to try to survive. He had been to the region before and was served monkey for dinner, while stuck injured in a rural area. He survived.

So far I've survived all of my "weird meat" experiences. In fact, I've rarely gotten a stomach ache after these experiments. I've eaten dog, cat, rat, cockroach, camel penis, bee larve, scorpions, spiders, night hawk, and pre-born duck embryo without feeling ill. Can't say the same for Taco Bell or McDonalds.

(excerpted from michael's introduction)

the best story i've heard all day, from my friend mark:

Did I tell you about the time my dad brought home oysters and gave them to my brother and myself as "pets"? I remember him saying, "You guys have always wanted pets, so take good care of them."

"But'''s an ugly grey rock."

"Well if you don't want them then we'll just cook them and eat them instead."

"Noooooooo we love them, you can't eat our pets!"

But in the end it's hard to love a pet that just sits in the refrigerator so they were eaten.

[as for me, i am bountifully excited about the cambridgeport maricultural event going down tomorrow night with friends... grilled oysters on cardboard tables, yum yum]

my friend karl is performing his choreography work + cello skillz tonight at the ICA tonight in CRASHarts Presents: Ten's the Limit. great preview writeup and profile published in the boston herald yesterday. i'm looking forward to a delightful night of dinner + drinks at lucky's followed by modern dance.

btw, yesterday i committed myself to become a member of the ICA. i'm foreseeing many more decades of enthusiastic arts patronage, 'til i am sprightly and grey...

Friday, April 13, 2007

pick up the dig.

two girl looks, two guys looks, my hands (in one way or another) in all of them.

liu's inaugural style shoot is doing her rather proud.

sheer joy.

in full color for your perusing enjoyment.

p.s. although the rule of thumb when running around with the photographer and model is to be invisible, i ended up elegantly peeking through at this shot took at reiss.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

happy belated easter and pasquetta. i needed some time to recover from this:

sunday we celebrated with friends and were guests of some amazing italian hosts who feasted us fantastically with nonstop procession of food, festivity, and fenestration. (seriously, we had a great view of the city from our sunny situation.)

check out the flickr set for more details, but it was an elaborate production (we charmed ourselves at the table for seven hours) with foodstuffs including:
  • bowls of green and black olives
  • caprese salad
  • proscuitto-wrapped melon
  • nuts and chips
  • saucisson
  • terrines of paté
  • hard and soft cheese
  • lots of sparkling wine
  • crusty and chewy breads
  • crunchy fresh veggies
  • spaghetti al dente with marinara, shrimp, mussels
  • lots of pinot grigio
  • eggplant mélange dressed with EVOO
  • sliced zucchini with mint
  • enormous prawns sautéed in lemon, garlic, armagnac
  • entire roast rack of lamb
  • refreshing romaine salad
  • lots of chianti
  • grilled swordfish steaks
  • roast potatoes and tomatoes
  • an assortment of sweets
  • colomba cake in a pink box
  • chilled limoncello
  • sips of armagnac
suffice to say, it was an occasion.

i am so thankful to be among friends, be healthy and happy, and adore these spontaneous and sustained social connections.

one cannot imagine living without them.

yup, we're official.

80108 busted out its public debut yesterday, with three major shoutouts. here we are in the press:
  • boston globe, Snippets of news, via cellphone: Start-up aims to be local, snappy, social

  • mediaweek, 80108 Launches Mobile Content

  • GigaOM, 80108, local content via SMS

the initial user experience and feedback has been super-promising, and it's definitely rewarding to witness a public unveiling after personally working behind-the-scenes for the last several months.

show your love and try out my channel, Boston:Style. it's free (cuz we care) and get secret reminders like...

did you know today is free ice-cream day at jp licks? get runnin' (i've got my eye on the rice DICE-Kream)

or that there's a super shopping night at gypsy on april 19th with goodies and specials from persona, habit, queen bee, injeanius/twilight, i soci salon + kérastase reps, shu uemura, hazel + grace, and stil?

ja, stuff like that.

so try it out, and channel your cathartic feedback through email. love me or hate me, that is the question... ;) if neither boston nor style is your scene, try any and all channels that fit the bill. we got a ton of channels represented in a bunch of US metropolises (metropoleis!)

get excited.