Category Archives: The Best Things

A caipirosca is a form of Caipirinha made with vodka instead of cachaca, a type of Brazilian liquor made from fermented sugarcane. Both caipirinhas and caipiroscas are popular in Brazil and Uruguay. Since I’m sure the good people of those countries know a thing or two about cocktails that can withstand the heat (and since I have vodka in my bar, but not cachaca), I decided to try my hand at caipiroscas this Friday afternoon, inspired by Ms. Stewart to use fresh summer strawberries, lime and ginger as mixers. Here’s the recipe below—highly recommended. And, as always: No soda, no artificial ingredients and as close to healthy as you can get with an alcoholic beverage!

Strawberry-Ginger Caipirosca

Yields: 2 drinks Ingredients: 1/2 cup vodka 10 fresh strawberries 1 lime, quartered 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger 2 tablespoons raw cane sugar crushed ice Preparation: Put strawberries, lime, ginger and sugar in cocktail shaker or other lidded container. ‘Muddle’ mixture until almost pureed. [For those of you, like me, who aren’t cocktail afficionados, to muddle is to sort of mash together ingredients with a muddler, a long pestle-shaped wooden tool with one large, rounded edge; if you haven’t got a muddler, any pestle-like utensil will have to do]. Add ice & vodka. Shake well. Divide between two glasses, and serve. Originally published on

Pregnant Women Shouldn’t Have To Carry America’s Obesity Epidemic, Too

There’s a growing body of research on how obesity can be ‘programmed’ in the womb—and a growing campaign to thwart America’s obesity ‘epidemic’ by targeting pregnant women. I’m all for public health agendas aimed at increasing maternal and fetal health. But the trend toward blaming obesity rates on women’s choices is worrying—don’t pregnant women have enough to think about without being responsible, literally, for the weight of the nation? Melinda Sothern, a professor of clinical exercise at Louisiana State University, doesn’t quite blame pregnant women themselves for today’s high obesity rates—it was “the evil ’50s,” she told The Los Angeles Times, an era when doctors often advised pregnant women against gaining more than 10 pounds but said nothing about quitting smoking. The new moms and mothers-to-be of 1950s America smoked, dieted during pregnancy and spurned breast-feeding—what Sothern calls “the obesity trinity.” Inadequate fetal nutrition can program babies to ‘catch up’ on growth as infants, which studies suggest increases the risk of later obesity. Smoking during pregnancy is also thought to increase obesity risk in children, because nicotine interferes with the body’s control of appetite, metabolic rate and fat storage. And formula-fed babies have a higher risk for becoming obese than breast-fed babies. I think this is all very interesting, and important in terms of figuring out what behaviors and habits doctors should recommend to pregnant women. I’m glad folks are conducting research on these topics, and I’m not saying we shouldn’t talk about it. But it’s framing pregnant women as “the root” of America’s obesity problems that I find troubling. Here’s how the LAT described Sothern’s theory:
… the tide of obesity that has swept the nation in the last two decades had its roots in what young mothers did, or didn’t do, in the postwar, suburban-sprouting 1950s. If she’s right — and evidence is stacking up on her side — reproductive-age women may become the central focus of efforts to reverse America’s fat problem.
Oh my. Obesity in our society (as Sothern acknowledges) has myriad causes—fast food, convenience food, decreased physical activity—many of which developed alongside changing maternal habits in the 1950s, 60s and 70s. Obesity rates may have began soaring in the 1980s due partly to mothers’ smoking, diet and lack-of-breast-feeding, but they had a lot of help from other areas.

Facebook Feed Poetry, Cont’d.

Guys, this may be one of the dorkiest things that I find interesting/amusing, but: Last year, I wrote (and posted here) a “most recent” poem, composed entirely of snippets from facebook friends’ status updates. I went to my facebook homepage, set my news feed to ‘most recent,’ and then took a sentence, phrase or few words from each update, reverse chronologically down the page. I tried it again yesterday, and again this morning, and the second and third attempts have been just as funny to me—so I am going to share them with you. In the hopes of inspiring you to do your own, of course. It’s a good creative writing exercise, I think. The result is part random, obviously, but part deliberate, because you pick from the status update (and comments, if you play that way) what to use. I took (some, but not many) liberties with punctuation and capitalization. The best part so far is how the result invariably comes across a bit like a T.S. Eliot poem. But strung together out of context, the result actually has no meaning except whatever narrative or sentiment you read into it. most recent. 3.3.12 4:37 p.m. I do not think it means what you think it means. Brunch, Manhattan beach, red-eye with Tito’s handmade vodka, belgian pilsner, tomato, dill, picante, quail egg— sometimes a necessary part of achieving success— roasted beets with blood orange and grapefruit vinaigrette. … a Little Creepy: 12 kids performing Glee style on the Mall. Avery, Janie and Jack started reading a book; over 1000 performances of the ancient Greek anti-war comedy Lysistrata took place. Before you go out tonight, make sure your dress doesn’t show your chocha! I took my son to the state semi-final for spoken poetry and was shocked. “These are my sons, Glacier and Warrior.” “You need to dry hump it.” LA, you are so pretty! ho ho! leap year! It’s strange that at least two people in your family survived the Black Plague. Really a wasted investment in hospitality, all of these kids I’m in a Chicago state of mind. It snowed a little bit. New Orleans is about to get a little dog in their wog. Tonight at Zeitgeist! Russian infant-swinging exercise guru Lena Fokina is back. I think I may have to make breakfast at the smallest AZA zoo by acreage for her birthday. It should be noted this is Benedict Cumberbatch, not RDJ Transferring Good morning “We prefer the term adultophobe.” Fun time at the Children’s Museum today! Transferring my Affliction t shirt is’t small enough Misty Malarky Ying Yang BLOB!!!! Damn, Aubrey Plaza: There is no doubt that The Cato Institute adds crucial intellectual perspective. Hey, We’re a Year Old! GO SAM GO! I know its been said before … Take Care, Kenji & Caelin (in the City)— you should think she was being raised a bewildered hooker running for a cause. Make time to write. Let me be the first to congratulate Craig and fabulous Eileen. So great! Twenhofel Middle School, Sunday March 4— What country, and what era, are we … Dear President Barack Obama: French fries don’t have to be terrible for you. Home photoshoot and the sounds of Peggy Lee Science is a hobby of mine. Laura Beaver – not only was that a pathetic retort, but you’ve obviously completely missed the entire meaning of the underlying issues, which show in your poor analogy. Had White Castles for the first time in over a year (husband wouldn’t let me eat them while I was pregnant) Your body is just as good as any fancy fitness machine! Our Art Director Orlando snapped (true love can’t wait till the wedding): I am already sick of spring break! … A long way since I lived on 7th avenue and 12th street in the seventies! Maybe we’ll see you there!! Ya. Happy Birthday Tony! Do you have these male roles fulfilled in your life? OMG! Aweseomesauce!! Ben Cake wonders why advertising is filled with so many submissive men. A Poetry Murder Mystery A snazzy new Gowanus studio space. Enter to win one, in the virtual “waiting room” for a Comic-Con badge. 14th St., downtown Cincinnati— Come find us if you haven’t already! Birthday party tonight!! woooo!! Feeling pretty badass right now. Listened to Tennis on Spotify Head to your basement or lower-level, inner-room when the sky turns green…


most recent 3.4.12 11:31 a.m. 

Vacation with a purpose! Sombrero guy, married to Hazel, designed to sit next to other consoles; myself on the oatmeal box. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that I’ll definitely be applying to this “then and now” celebrity site. Perhaps he has really been drifting to the right ideologically. Fabulous hats and fascinators made by a lovely lady … Church, breakfast, wedding planning … He compares birth control to sneakers, adizero Rush running shoes, helping people have healthy sex at Arnold’s Bar and Grill. A trip to LA & Tokyo— the unspoken crossover— full of many wonderful things. At the School of Seven Bells (it’s a great place to be) experience elevated energy, increased circulation, those fine “Slut” On Air exhibiting paintings. I do hot yoga and I’m starting acupuncture. At the circussschool, upsidedown spin, you’ve been looming over my head, the amount of reflex wide eyed liberations, DiLeo’s first attempt, she spins and spins …… People of Earth on food stamps to wild animals Nikos in a Ferrari winter waning Late at Night I got a lot of neat stuff to show and tell I get a month to every July core- and have it- and be liberated, at the home and garden show. (Yes I actually said that and meant it lol) Click “Like” if you’ve fallen into any of these traps. Should we try to reinvigorate the skilled trades, which are mostly held by men? (Crazy, busy day) Breaking: “Mamie Eisenhower was a $5 crack whore.” One more reason … Hawt. I knew about Gentry Punk Rock Neon Trees, this place is not your home. Nor was it … Happy birthday baby. It’s happening … … play for me? Congrats on another great show. A couple of lovely ladies. Mythos is both surprising and comforting. Central for the past two hours, and no end in sight.

What Is With Diana Athill?

A search term that led someone to my blog yesterday.

What is with diana athill? did she have any friendships with women

I’m sorry, I just thought it was funny that someone seemed so passionately aggravated by the 94-year-old British editor and memoirist’s lack of female friends.

What is with it? I don’t know; I’ve read two of her books, Stet and Instead of a Letter, and haven’t noticed it (more pronouncedly, she had very few friends in general, just acquaintances and love affairs). I do think Athill had/has ADHD, and women with ADHD have more male friends, in my limited anecdotal experience. But maybe it’s just because Diana Athill is a badass who was too busy editing books (by Philip Roth, Norman Mailer, Simone de Beauvoir, Jean Rhys and V.S. Naipaul, to name a few) and having love affairs. Geez.

(thank’s for asking, I guess)

Interior Design

“Here’s my general philosophy:  Your house should be an amplification of your favorite feeling.  I know i sound like i’m 6, and i’m all ‘mrs. johnson my favorite feeling is ‘happy’, but whether you want it more calm and comforting or loud and engaging, it should be a strong version of that. For me its totally ‘happy, with a little bit of the crazy’.”
{Emily Henderson} I really get into decorating and setting up places I live way more than it’s not-embarrassing to admit.

Blogger Crushes, Redux

A long, long time ago,  in blog years, anyway, I wrote a post about two bloggers I was newly in word-crush with: Phoebe Maltz (now Bovy) of What Would Phoebe Do (at the time one of my fellow bloggers on the ill-fated Culture 11’s regrettably-named “Ladyblog”) and Freddie deBoer, of L’Hote . Considering I’m now living with Mr. deBoer, one of these turned out to be a little more relevant to my life than the other—but, damn if Ms. Maltz-Bovy doesn’t still continually impress me and makes me laugh to this day. Here’s Phoebe on why she took her husband’s name when she got married recently:
What feminism hasn’t meant, for me, is wheel-reinvention. In other words, I do not lose sleep over the fact that I do not defy gender norms in all areas. I recognize that it’s convenient to say the least to identify as the gender you were born. I don’t think that my relationship with my husband is something so complex and unique and snowflake-ish that the word “marriage” fails to describe it. I’m lucky that the kind of relationship I wanted is the one society wanted me to have. So the fact that wife-takes-husband’s-name is how it generally goes was not in and of itself a reason, for me, to be suspicious of it.
This nicely captures one of my favorite habitual Phoebe peeves: Progressive/feminist/hipster writers who go to all sorts of elaborate rhetorical lengths to justify their utterly normal but—gasp!—utterly bourgeois wants (see: the Jessica Grose paragraph here). You can also always count on Phoebe to cut through the bullshit on media panics, as in here, on some recent controversy about a 10-year-old Vogue fashion model:
Like I’ve said about these scandals before, the issue is not – no matter how many times Jezebel or whichever other site tells us it should be – Think of the Children. (Somehow I doubt that even in France, pedophiles are buying let alone created by French Vogue.) It’s always fundamentally Think of the Grown Women, who will never measure up if an ideal is defined as preadolescent.
Yes yes yes yes yes.