|Sunset through my dirty, cracked windshield at the stop sign, High Drive|
I visited a chiropractor for the first time in my life this week, which apparently was very surprising to the people at the chiropractic office. They said I was about to change my life. We'll see about that, people. But can you do something about my neck, please? Thanks.
I finished Idaho on Monday. The writing was gorgeous. I was wrong last week when I described the plot as a puzzle coming together to reveal a finished piece. Many pieces were missing. Some pieces fit in different ways. Over the past week I've imagined different scenarios for how the plot played out, and went onto Goodreads forums to see what other people think happened. It was a beautiful portrayal of love in all its complicated forms, and also an interesting study in how personal narrative can both empower and betray us. I also loved the role that music played throughout the book, particularly the song at its core, which, I learned, was written by the author's father.
Looking for something new to read, I spent an hour at the library and ended up leaving with three books on gardening. This is the time of year I start to get that restless feeling that I should be doing something about the lawn, if not getting rid of it entirely. And that leads to all sorts of other thoughts that lead to total paralysis. My gardening know-how comes from trial and error, which adds up to a lot of wasted time and money. So these books are all about taking things one step - or in some cases, one year - at a time.
I also began Elena Ferrante's My Brilliant Friend.
First of all, check out how tomato paste is made in Sicily!
And as of Saturday, we can check Love, season 3 off our list.
I forgot to include this category last week, when I enjoyed a new-to-me Joni Mitchell album from 1975 called "The Hissing of Summer Lawns." (You can listen for free if you have Prime.) A little weird, a little jazzy.
On my Friday commute from work, I always try to remember to tune my radio to the jazz station because I can catch the end of a show I love that features lesser-known soul/R&B tracks from the 1960s and 70s (it ends at 5 p.m.), but this Friday, I was driving in circles downtown trying to find parking long after the show ended. But what played next was so wonderful I was actually grateful to be stuck in traffic: it was a harp/piano duet of Piazzolla's "Libertango," a piece that has been in my life just in the last year or so but has become part of my life's soundtrack. I immediately told Joel about it (once I found parking and got to the winery where we were meeting) and was already on my phone trying to figure out who performed it. A day later, I figured it out. These two are amazing - a Columbian harpist (Edmar Castaneda) and a young Japanese pianist (Hiromi) - and their live performances (some also on YouTube) are breathtaking.
Joel made another darn-good pasta (using a quick tomato and chicken marsala sauce) on a night when I didn't have my Bar Method class, which really made me feel free and easy. On St. Patrick's Day, we ate fried rice for lunch and pizza for dinner. But at least we listened to The Chieftans.
Because I randomly had ricotta in the fridge, I tried out the whipped ricotta recipe in Six Seasons for spreading on bread and who-knows-what-else. It's tasty.
|When crummy is good|
I made it just under the wire by baking on Saturday. This week was hibiscus-rose shortbread, made with part all-purpose flour, part white rice flour. It's tangy from the hibiscus leaves and I can barely taste the rose (from rosewater). Crumbly and tender and easy to make.