Things I love: Almond butter studded with chewy bits of crystallized ginger. Very good, intensely dark chocolate, the sort that melts into velvety bitterness on your tongue. Vermont maple syrup, the real deal that glows amber in the bottle and tastes like you're standing outside in the crisp air, wearing Carhartts, breathing deeply in a stand of fir trees. Crisp rice cereal. The crunch of it, the way I like to add it to a bowl, pour cold skim milk over it, then float a layer of heavy cream on top. Oh, you think that defeats the point of skim milk? I think you're missing the point. (Pure pleasure, that's the point.)Read More
It's not exactly bright outside. Rain is streaming down past my window; the sky is growing gloomier by the minute.
A string of warm days has melted most of the snow in the city, leaving the sidewalks wet and icy. Stepping off the curb means dunking your foot into a rivulet of cold, dirty slush.Read More
Some days I'm on the precipice of tears all day for no discernible reason. Just teetering on the knife's edge of crying: bursting into chest-heaving sobs, or maybe those quiet tears that trace their way slowly down your cheek. There's no source, just a swelling tide of emotion that threatens to swamp you. It only needs a tiny push to spring forth. Spilling my salad accidentally could make me weep. Or putting on the laundry only to forget it and discover the sodden, wet mass of it hours later in the machine. Or seeing a stray baby-sized mitten on the side of the park path.Read More
As it turns out, there’s a very fine line between striving for your best and perfectionism, between pushing yourself and being hard on yourself.
I’ve spent most of my twenties walking that line, often finding myself on the wrong side of it.
Have you felt that dogged determination to succeed? Has it brought you good things? For me it has, at times. If you’re settling for the attainable, how can you soar to unexpected heights?Read More
On Friday night, I went to dinner at a little Italian restaurant in the West Village. It’s an old favorite, just a few blocks from a cozy apartment where I used to live. The restaurant is warm and inviting, with worn wood floors and a long mirrored bar. It’s lit with vintage-y lightbulbs that glow amber above the tables.
The menu is filled with the sort of food I imagine real Italians eat. Somewhere in Naples, in a quiet cool kitchen, someone’s nonna is setting out simple dishes like thinly sliced rib-eye, served cold, over lemony arugula and shaved Brussel sprouts studded with salty bits of Castelrosso cheese.Read More