My dad loves malted milk balls. Every Christmas, we wrap up a box of them and tuck it in his stocking. He knows it’s coming, but he always exclaims with surprise and excitement, as if we’ve gifted him a vintage Patek Phillipe. That’s a quality in him that I seek to emulate: the ability to make even tiny things feel like celebrations. To greet ordinary moments with extraordinary joy.Read More
There’s a lot to love about running, but among the many things, is that you don’t need anyone else. You don’t need anything else. Just you, your own two feet, and a path. Empowering and freeing, you can achieve a kind of simple euphoria—physical exhaustion, mental relaxation—on your own terms. Runner’s high is a very apt phrase.
You don’t need an instructor, or a fancy studio. Or a non-fancy studio! You don’t need music. You don’t need the right conditions, or a schedule, or group, or a trainer bellowing at you. You do not need to pay $30. Not needing any of those things is freeing in another way—less goes wrong. Even a bad run is a great run. It’s just you out there. In structured exercise, I find myself prone to fixating on so much: is the room too hot, is the girl next to me fidgeting, how’s the volume of the music, and so on.Read More
As a living, breathing human being, I do love chocolate. I understand why the grocery store check-out counters are lined with chocolate bars. I understand why Willy Wonka is a great movie. (In fact, I completely understand why Augustus Gloop fell into that chocolate river. I’m with you, Augustus! I’d have thrown on my suit and hopped in there with you too!) I understand why Smitten Kitchen has a killer recipe for a cake called the “I want chocolate cake” cake. And I understand why my mom used to hide the chocolate chips at the back of the freezer when we were little. Honestly, she probably still should.Read More
My best writing comes to me at night. It arrives within warning. Sometimes it steps politely, almost tentatively, out of the dusky edges of my mind as I’m falling asleep. My thoughts recess obediently, filing out of my head, and the writing pokes its head in, as if it’s the last straggling coworker in the office, as if to say: “Excuse me? Just a few things quickly before I head home.”Read More
I live just a few steps away from a very famous bakery. (No, it’s not my own kitchen, weird right?! Funny how word hasn’t caught on about my mad kitchen skills yet…) People come in droves to buy their cookies; I’ve counted lines of 70+ people on more than one occasion. They make a lot of excellent items—a perfectly domed blueberry muffin, squares of thin-crust squares of pizza shingled with rosemary-flecked potato slices, a dense banana bread packed with chocolate chunks—but most customers only have eyes for their cookies. Granted, the cookies are worth the wait.