This, Looks Bad

Sestra Nožisková wrapped shooting another documentary short this weekend. Our subject (victim) this go-round was my French flatmate, Guillaume.

Kasey dressed him in funky outfits.

I asked him irritatingly philosophical questions.

Our cameraman, Stefan, kept telling us to cut due to the noise of low-flying planes.

Guillaume really thought the way we posed him was excruciatingly uncomfortable and our film location was entirely unfitting of his personality (he would have preferred filming in a toilet - oy).

The end product is going to be very French... and (we hope) hilariously marvelous.

Introducing....Leap - Anywhere!!!

For those of you who don't know (and I presume most of the world does not know... you heard it here first!) a most-fantastic and sure-to-be-a-smash Internet venture called Leap Anywhere launched yesterday. It's a rare sort of company that's all about encouraging people to get out and support a cause, donate to charity, or well, generally take a "leap" and do somehing "good" for humanity.

I *do* happen to know about Leap because I was priveleged enough to work on their marketing strategy, which, in turn, also meant that I was also priveleged enough to attend their launch party at Lord Davenport's mansion last night.

Goodness. Coolness. Fun. Naturally, pictures follow...

Join the site!!! And enjoy!

The dress code was "charity shop chic" - here's me and Guillaume trying to pull off our thrown-together used looks.

Me, Guillaume, and Kasey - vamping on the carpet.

Me, Malcolm (Leap's founder), Cheeky Chris, and a famous ballerina - forgot to catch her name....

In the midst of Jade Jagger's DJ'ing... we call this "modelesque."

The crowd.

Despite the fact that there were three levels of pool tables, a celeb DJ, a courtyard, AND a hot tub at our disposal, our trio possibly managed to have the most fun riding the micro 3X3 elevator... hmmmmm....

Yep, love in an elevator... take a "leap" folks!

Tasting London

Foodies descended on Regents Park this weekend for Taste of London, a veritable carnival of Michelin-starred restaurants doling out tiny plates of gourmet and sometimes unpronounceable dishes - and this epicurean was lucky enough to be taken to be among them.

In one afternoon I had Italian, Thai, French, nouveau Chinese, and oh, more Italian. And everything was so lovely that despite that wretched sounding combination of cuisines, I departed from the event with a very happy stomach. In fact, I was so preoccupied with enjoying the afternoon that I virtually forgot to document much of anything, however, I did capture a handful of the edible highlights.

Bon Appetit!

Queen scallops with capers and tomatoes served up in a seashell from Theo Randall - who was actually there manning his booth (note: my second in-person encounter with this friendly, down-to-earth chef!)

A "noodle box" from Asia de Cuba. Think vegetable lasagna, only with rice-based noodles and hoisen sauce - delicious!

But we saved the absolute best for last. Behold: the truffle.

Which was grated atop a base of tagliatelle and broad beans before our very eyes. Maybe it had to do with the camera, but when it came to our turn, the man with the truffle grated us an extra-generous portion!

Married together with just a touch of cream sauce, Ristorante Semplice created a very earthy, decadent heaven...

Mmmmm. For a foodie, it was one of those "die happy" moments.

gather ye rosebuds

"Art is the proper task of life." - Friedrich Nietzsche

Photography is by Rodney Smith, who has a delightful new photography coffee table book out called The End. It's absolutely loaded with hyperbole and highly recommended if you've recently been taking life - or yourself - too seriously.

pickled piper

dark green "courgettes" on sale by the bunches.
waiting for mustard, vinegar and a refrigerator.
at least, that's what they were softly humming about.
right before i scooped them up
and put them in my basket.

the brine is simple.
this time i used one tablespoon of sugar.
my next go, i'll use two.

murky yellow.
for me: they taste like summer last year.

for you: well worth the easy try...


Me. Waiting for the train.

Enter the long leg of Guillaume, my flatmate.

Wow. I didn't realise how dwarfed I look standing next to him.

Why are we the only ones standing on the edge of the platform?

Like impatient strangers...

If you care to turn sideways. I give the signal. We could be spies...

Twitter is Pointless - Right?

Okay, so I'm really not the best person to pass a judgment on Twitter - I'm not even on social networking sites. What can I say? I like old-fashioned personal notes and face-to-face communication... I have a hard enough time focusing on the important matter of living my life without a ticker-tape detailing the blow-by-blow minutia of my friends' and acquaintances' thoughts, activities, or how much they enjoyed a tuna fish sandwich on white bread for lunch.

That is perhaps why I laughed *out loud* at an article on entitled Orphaned Tweets , which unearthed messages from one-time Twitter users who signed up for the service, sent a 'tweet,' and then, presumably, could not be bothered to do so again. So, if you need a good laugh, give it a read... hilarious!


Are Americans all Genetically Modified Organisms???

Wow. So this blog has turned a bit political lately. Sorry. Nothing clears a room faster than soap boxing and politics. But the documentary Food, Inc. premiers in the States this week, and oh my, if I wouldn't love to be among the first to see it.

You see, I have an enormous soft spot for well-done documentaries and anything that doles out criticism of corporate farming, mass-produced over-processed packaged goods and those frightening food conglomerates who make a mockery of capitalism and consumer choice (you did know that when you're at the grocery store you're not choosing between Cool Whip and Dream Whip, oh no, you're choosing between Philip Morris and, oh, Philip Morris... after watching their US tobacco profits dry up, they needed to diversify and try and do us all in with the likes of Cheese Whiz and a whole host of other supposedly edible atrocities. Click on that link, you'll be shocked at what they own.)

My favourite part of the trailer above, however, is when they reveal that "so much of our industrial food turns out to be rearrangements of corn." It's true! My dad's family used to own a little frozen pizza company called Tombstone. They sold it to Kraft years ago (which was since bought by, ha, of course, Philip Morris) and we caught wind that they were experimenting with substituting the tomato sauce with flavoured corn starch to save money. Delicious and nutritious - non?

Eat aware people. Eat aware.


"Don't underestimate the value of Doing Nothing, of just going along, listening to all the things you can't hear, and not bothering."
- A.A. Milne via Winnie-the-Pooh

The calming earth-meets-astral photo was taken by J.P. Jespersen (see the link to his blog on the blogroll to your left...)

I love you for your Green Cadillac?

Sorry, just had to throw in the song for good measure.

But the GM news is official... a symbol of American culture and nostalgia brought down. What will all the Mary Kay ladies do? More importantly, what will all the people in Michigan who were already scraping together an existence do? Sad.

Maybe this is strange, but when I learned that the bankruptcy ax had finally dropped on GM, I actively wondered what the filmmaker Michael Moore's thoughts on the matter were since he's not only been such a vehement critic of the corporation during his career, but also such a sympathetic champion for his hometown of Flint, Michigan. Well, I found my answer on the Huffington Post today. If you're also curious how Moore felt about the death of GM, you can read his reaction here.

Agree or disagree with his bombastic style, but I think surely, surely some of what he says is in the right vein. Abandoning crews of skilled vocational workers isn't just anti-humanistic, it seems that to do so would also seriously jeopardize America's industrial might.

after a long, treacherous climb...

"Man's main task in life is to give birth to himself, to become what he potentially is." - Erich Fromm

Was recently reminded of this quote of Erich Fromm's. I forgot how much I enjoy the thoughts of this humanistic sociologist/philosopher. I recommend Fromm's Sane Society if you're after thought-provoking non-fiction read.

Photo is by Teun Hocks.