Showing posts from September, 2006

Living musicians make live music

The July 20th Ryan Adam's show that I've blogged about is now up on the Internet Archive. There's no reason for you not to go out and download the whole show and pretend your were with us in the middle of Jersey. The only annoyance is that you have to add in your own ID3 tags.


I admit that I have a problem with CAPTCHAs, but apparently CAPTCHAs have a problem with me, too.

One of the inventors of CAPTCHA, Luis von Ahn, just won a MacArthur Genius blah-blah thingy. Which, c'mon, for something that incorrectly identifies me as a computer half the time?

On the bright side, George Saunders won as well. I don't know that half a million is going to motivate him to increase his literary output.

Linguini with Clam Sauce

a dozen clams
an onion
much garlic
flat leaf (Italian) parsley
a box of linguini
some dry white wine
black pepper and some sort of grated hard cheese

Prep the clams and start the water for the pasta boiling.
Chop and sauteƩ the onions and garlic in olive oil in a large pan. Start cooking the pasta. Add the clams, a few pours of white wine, and the parsley to the pan with the onions. The clams should steam open after 5-7 minutes. If any clams don't open, please don't pry them open and eat them or you'll die.
When the pasta's done and strained, put it back in the pot you cooked it in. Add the contents of your clammy pan, the black pepper and cheese. Toss it around a bit and eat (the pasta).

Manhattan Clam Chowder

18 medium size clams
3 stalks celery
1 onion
1 carrot
1 medium can crushed tomatoes
a few cloves garlic
(turkey) bacon
3 potatoes
bay leaf, tarragon, black pepper, salt and spicy red pepper

Prep the clams.
Heat some oil in a large soup pot. Chop the onion, garlic, carrot, and celery, and sauteƩ them in the pot for 10 minutes or so, stirring frequently. It should approach caramelization.
Add the diced potatoes and fill the pot with water about 3/4 of the way to the top. Add a judicious amount of the crushed tomatoes--not too much; you could always add more later. Let that boil for 15 minutes. Season with the herbs and spices.
Add the clams and continue to boil for another 10 minutes or so. The clams will open when they're fully cooked. If you're considerate, you'd take the clam meat out and discard the shells at this point.
Cook a few slices of (turkey) bacon, and add it to the soup just before you're ready to serve.
I'd recommend some bread and a bright Riesling. And candy for d…


Out of all the things that should not be purchased, canned chopped clams are one of them. Don't buy them. Buy fresh clams, take them home, and put them in a big bowl of cold water. The clams will bubble a bit and generally enjoy themselves, and much of the sand that they house inside their shells will filter out to the bottom of the bowl.

So now you're got some prepped clams. Will you make a (Manhattan, natch) clam chowder, or linguini and clam sauce? It's choose your own adventure time, kiddies.

What's Your Power Song?

I used to wonder if I would still feel the need to run all the time if I could eat ginormous tasting menus and effortlessly maintain a size 2 (in no danger of happening). And I used to think the answer was a definite "hell no"–I'd bring on the banana pudding and revel in my genetic luck. But over the past few years, I've come to crave running. Not the endorphins or anything silly like that, but the concept of setting myself in motion in time to the music blasting in my ears. I may look like I'm dying, but as these rivers of sweat pour down my face, in my head I'm onstage shaking my ass with Janet Jackson to "Miss You Much" or doing backup vocals for Michael Stipe.

And now, running is even more fun. This weekend, in addition to our divine tasting menu dinner at Babbo (perfection), Jeff gave me one of the best gifts I've ever received. Nike and Apple recently paired up to make their Nike + iPod kit. You need an iPod Nano (Jeff has one), a special …

Appetite for Destruction, or Moscato's Jello, Baby, or The Berenstain Bears and Too Much Food!

When you view video on YouTube, there's a link below the video that will let you "Post a Video Response". The Beatles recorded Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band partly as a response to the musical innovations of the Beach Boy's Pet Sounds. And as evidenced by the countlesspublications dedicated to literary review, the most natural way to respond to writing is by putting words down on (sometimes digital) paper.

Sheryl and I ate at Babbo last night to celebrate our anniversary, and I wish I had the luxury of sharing my response to the food as an elaborate meal of my own. More to the point, I wish I had the skill to do so. Perhaps if I'd spent a protracted Junior year abroad (stretched out to, say, a couple of decades) traveling around Italy and watching regional chefs ply their trade I'd be able to approximate a third of what we ate last night. It was far and away the best meal I've ever had. Words cannot do it justice, (and if they could, it would b…