There's never anything bad about commuting on a bicycle. But sometimes there are times when it's better than good. I found a new shortcut to the bank (where one of my bicycles was once stolen! locked up! on video!) through Park Labrea. And they even have a bike lane. It's quiet, easy, and lined with spring blooms: oleander, bougainvillea, jacaranda... Now if I had more deposits to make, I'd be taking this route more often.
"Persian, Dilorom told me, had only one word for crying, whereas Old Uzbek had one hundred. Old Uzbek had words for wanting to cry and not being able to, for being caused to sob by something, for loudly crying like thunder in the clouds, for crying in gasps, for weeping inwardly or secretly, for crying ceaselessly in a high voice, for crying in hiccups, and for crying while uttering the sound 'hay hay.'"
— Elif Batuman (The Possessed: Adventures with Russian Books and the People Who Read Them)
Thanks to a book I found at the library called Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day, baking bread is de-mystified. The premise is to mix up a big batch, let it rise, then refrigerate it and pull off a hunk every time you want fresh bread. No kneading necessary (even though that was the fun part) and the authors do away with all the delicate and intimidating aspects of the ordeal. Don't worry if the yeast isn't dissolved completely, they say. When your loaf is resting before baking, you don't have to cover it if you don't want. Every recipe I've tried has been successful so far. I'm thrilled with this because it's satisfying to make and satisfying to eat.
Breakfast at 5 p.m. on the way to working at night in Lancaster, CA, the desert. Cold and windy and gusts of dust. I ate at an iHop on Avenue I: German crepes and turkey bacon and Lipton tea in a black plastic teapot.
My latest library book fell open to the chapter on onions, garlic, and leeks, right to a simple recipe for Pink Pickled Onions. I had all the (six) ingredients (I love it when that happens), so I could just whip it up. This is the kind of thing to always have handy in the fridge. It's from the book How to Pick a Peach by Russ Parsons.
This comes from a link my friend sent me today out of the blue http://www.penciltalk.org. Usually our talk is more along the fountain pen-and-ink line. But count me in as a pencil fan. You just can't go wrong with a sharpened pencil. I bought these for another friend: tiny erasers from my favorite bookstore in Little Tokyo. This is her photograph from her new blog WHO IS MARIE TURNOR? (I'm flattered she liked them enough to feature them. She is, after all an expert on good taste.)