Welcome Gentle Readers

This blog tends to wander from its main purpose -- updates on my fiction. I do have updates and excerpts of my work. But I also write about my obsessions -- food, friends and pop culture and my weird life in Los Angeles. Enjoy!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Glamour and Green Thumbs

Craig called and asked what my favorite color is. Now, I'm afraid. I keep thinking that he's going to show up in some big purple bird costume and do a dance to cheer me up. He's been on a bird bender lately. It seems that his lady set up several hummingbird feeders in their postage stamp of a yard. He speaks a great deal of being strafed on his way to the dumpster. Yet, I don't put it past him to show up as a big purple hummingbird. I can't say that that wouldn't make me laugh. I don't know if the neighbors would speak to us again, but I certainly would laugh.

The Glamorous Life?

There are many who believe that the Hubs and I live a typical LA lifestyle – lots of excitement, fun and sun by the pool or on the beach, exciting friends, exciting places like clubs or restaurants. So, when people come to visit, we feel compelled – rightly or wrongly – to show visitors an exciting time. That is a bit difficult for us as we actually don't go out much normally. And when we do, it's to very unglamorous places like a diner (the most excellent 50's Cafe in Venice) or a hot dog stand (the most excellent Costco hot dog stand). Sometimes, we really cut loose and talk shop with crew guys we know over coffee or -- sometimes -- a beer! And that was before I began the ordeal with my illness. We're really homebodies lately. I basically go to appointments and to some sort of market. Luckily, there is a pleasant neighborhood to walk about. I'm content with my current lot in life. But when visitors come calling, there is always the question of how to keep them entertained. Because along with being homebodies, Jon and I are complete geeks. What we may be interested in – like a trip out to Vasquez Rocks or all the places Starsky and Hutch filmed in Venice – doesn't appeal to many people.

Thus, when my brother came to town last week, Jon and I puzzled mightily over how to entertain him for four days. The Star tours of celebrity homes aren't very exciting. The maps are largely inaccurate and most of those homes in Beverly Hills and Bel Aire are surrounded by tall walls or hedges. I was fairly certain that he wouldn't be interested in the murder tour. And then there is the Gang tour that takes folks into gang territories for photo ops. That struck me as pushing one's luck. And being the children of a cop, we found that kind of tour more than a little foolish. Luckily, aside from the espionage mission he was completing for my father (making sure I'm actually on the mend as I claim), my brother was far more interested in enjoying the warm weather than visiting all the tourist spots. Specifically, he was enjoying calling people back East from the Santa Monica pier and telling them what temperature it was. Ah, simple pleasures. So, when he said he was up for anywhere I wanted to go, I dragged him to my favorite kitchen supply store, Surfas. I've been wanting to take a look at their professional pots and pans – which I did. Meanwhile, my brother became obsessed with quail eggs. I had a great time there, because I discovered that they had vastly increased the cooking products sections. Many things I might have ordered online like duck fat or duck confit are in stock there. They also carry a great selection of spices and other things. So, I had a blast. I think he did, too. I do know that the espionage mission was a success.

Pale Green Thumb

My herb garden is going through some growing pains. The Italian oregano bit the dust this week. It had been thriving, but then it all just dried up and died. I wrote the vendor who sold me them in the hopes of saving the Italian parsley and found that the plants may not be getting enough sun in the living room window. It's not making a valiant effort at rebounding in the bedroom window which gets a lot of direct sunlight. The blue basil and the Thyme are thriving, so far. Alas, the chive and dill plants I got for Christmas are looking limp; I'm hoping that it's just a matter of changing the pots, but I don't know. Any suggestions out there?

The Super Bowl menu went over very nicely. I even had some leftovers to enjoy into the week. I haven't done much interesting cooking because of running around with my brother. I have plans to take on the elusive madeleine. I'm not sure why my first attempt failed in such a spectacular fashion, but I'm going to find out. How can I conquer puff pastry if I can't conquer a cookie?


No writing or filmmaking updates this week due to my visitor. Then, after he left Jon caught a very bad cold. I now have it. Depending on where my blood counts are, a cold could become quite problematic. So, I'm taking it very easy for the next few days.

Stay tuned.

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