Megnut

Hello, hypertext!

Former New York Times restaurant critics William Grimes and Ruth Reichl select eateries for A Quick Guide to the Best Restaurants in New York. Handy, but why aren't these restaurant names linked to the Times' reviews?

Garden ahoy!

The Bountiful ContainerOne bitterly cold weekend day in January, I sat on my bed with McGee & Stuckey's Bountiful Container at my side and began sketching my plans for this year's fire escape garden. The goals: everything (or nearly everything) would be edible so I could cook with it; good smelly flowers, so cuttings could be brought indoors; and hardier specimens, such as a lavender that's hardy to 0° so many plants will (hopefully) survive the winter. Yesterday, I reworked some plans and placed orders. And during a scouting expedition to the garden center, I purchased a pink primrose. It now sits on my windowsill, harkening spring.

You too can begin your garden now (where now equals planning and ordering but not necessarily planting since I don't know where you live and what you're planting!), and I cannot recommend the Bountiful Container more strongly. This book has proved so useful time and time again, and I constantly return to its pages for the handholding that I, a novice green thumb, require.

Future talk

So you may have heard about Future Me, the website that lets you write emails to your future self, and set a delivery date years from now. The possible conversations are fascinating, and yet email is so clunky and leads to such asynchronous exchanges. I want immediacy in my future me chats! Thus it was with trepidation that I began an AIM conversation this afternoon with my future self.


megnut: you there?

megnut2012: yeah, what's up?

megnut: well, i'm just wondering, um, what's it like being 40? what's our life like now?

megnut2012: eh, pretty much the same as being 32

megnut: really? huh, no epiphanies?

megnut2012: nah, not so much.

megnut: what about wrinkles?

megnut: does all that wrinkle cream i've been buying lately actually work? or do you have a lot of sun damage?

My development on Future AIM Me begins in earnest later this week. Ready your questions for yourself now and look for a rough alpha in mid-summer.

Forever in New York City

Forever: A NovelWhile on vacation I read
Forever: A Novel
by Pete Hamill. It was
The Count of Monte Cristo
meets
Interview with the Vampire
, which sounds cheesier than it was. It was perfect beach reading, and I enjoyed a great deal of it. It got me so much more curious about the City's history and made me more determined than ever to dig into
Gotham: A History of New York City to 1898
.

Perhaps the most interesting bit for me was actually after the book. My edition contained an interview with the author in which he talked about completing the book on September 10, 2001. And then of course, needing to go back and re-write a good chunk of the end. After all, his protagonist had supposedly experienced all of Manhattan's major events from about 1740 on. I imagine the process must have been difficult for Mr. Hamil. The "present day" world where his novel ended no longer existed, and ceased to exist the morning after he put down his pen.

March tomorrow in NYC

I've hardly heard anything about it, but apparently there's a rally and march planned for tomorrow beginning at 11:30 AM, a "global day of action on the first anniversary of the U.S. bombing and invasion of Iraq." Here are the logistics for the New York City demonstration.

Flakes are falling

If you happen across a giant swath of dry skin on the streets of New York City in the next few days, it's probably mine. After conscientiously applying SPF 30 multiple times a day in Anguilla and suffering only a bit of sunburn on my face, I am now leaving an epidermal trail throughout Manhattan. I blame the recent snow and excessive work schedule for causing my tan to flee.

A world away

junks hole, anguilla, bwi
Junks Hole looking toward Savannah Bay, Anguilla, British West Indies.

Off for some sun and sand

I'm off to Anguilla -- an island in the British West Indies -- today for some very much needed, albeit brief, vacation. Plans include swimming, sunning, sleeping, snorkeling, and reading. Oh and eating. And that's about it. Items of note in the suitcase include: tank tops; summery skirts; one itsy bitsy teeny weeny green polka dot bikini; a fresh book,
Forever
(no, not Judy Blume's, Mark Hamill's, just because I'm leaving NYC doesn't mean I shouldn't still be thinking about it!); digital camera; and most importantly, SPF 30.

If reading this makes you jealous, I've just the thing for you: American Airlines sale! Caribbean For As Low As $198 Round Trip. So maybe you too can be doning a tiny green bikini soon as well! Updates will resume next week when I return.

Ms. has a blog

I hadn't realized my old friend Ms. Magazine has a blog now! I'm totally adding it to my daily reading rotation and look forward to seeing what it has to offer. Also, I was so honored to see a link in the sidebar to megnut! Very cool.

A photo from last week

I hadn't realized till just now that Blaise posted a scan of the picture of us from last week's New York Daily News article on blogging. (You can see my post here about it here.) That's me with the blondish/orange hair in the corner. Yeah, I don't know why I dyed it that color, but I did (where I = my favorite hair cutting gal pal Silvia).

So many many megs

"Six Hundred and Fourty Nine Megs" of Jay-Z is available for your remixing and sampling pleasure in the Jay-Z Construction Set, so now you too can raise the ire of the major labels.

The Jay-Z Construction Set is a toolkit with all of the necessary software and raw materials to create a new remix of Jay-Z's Black Album. It includes nine different variations on the Black Album, over 1200 clip art images, and a couple hundred meg of classic samples and breaks.

Take an old famous blues singer, say Bessie Smith, and make a "Black & Blue album" or mix AC/DC's "Back in Black" to make a "Double-Black" album. Or you know, come up with something else. The content is all there!

Lady bloggers in the Daily News

There's an article about New York City women bloggers, I am woman, hear me blog in today's New York Daily News. The print edition has a big color photo of me, Liz Spiers and Blaise Kearsley but that doesn't appear to be online.

As far as story goes, it's the same old stuff, but the selection of women highlighted is great. There are several women profiled whose blogs I wasn't familiar with, so I'm looking forward to adding some more "blog-ettes" (as the article refers to women bloggers) to my reading rotation.

10 great things from MUG

My favorite daily email has been, and continues to be, Charlie Suisman's Manhattan User's Guide (MUG). Today, Suisman asks New York City bloggers to share 10 Great Things about NYC. There's some great stuff in there -- some new to me, some just reminders of places I need to revisit and things I need to redo. Tomorrow will bring Part Two of the series, and I hope many more wonderful tips about NYC.

Elsewhere

Jason's posted pictures of our High Line stroll last weekend.

The Economist's Backgrounder on Haiti.

The case for gay marriage (also from Economist.com)

Catholic Group Is Told to Pay for Birth Control

And those are just a few of the things I am thinking about.

The Brontë sisters

How the Brontës Became Romantic Icons -- I've never been a huge Brontë fan (always prefering Burney and Austen) but this article was a good look at their tragic lives and its impact on their writing. Maybe I'll re-read some of that Brontë sisterly goodness soon.

Best poem ever

This week's the New Yorker is off to a great start. Not only have I really enjoyed what I've read of the Mayor Bloomberg profile, but John Updike's poem, Duet On Mars, is the best poem I've read in a long time.

15K is a lot of K

On Saturday morning I ran the New York Road Runners' Al Gordon 15K in Central Park. Weather permitted, for a change, and race day dawned a warmish 39° without the forecast rain showers. I ran alone for this race, and was late to the start, forcing me to cut across a muddy field as everyone began and causing me to go off the line at a brisker pace than normal, and in more of a panic. But then I settled in and just ran ran ran, then I ran some more. Never one to give up, I kept running. Then running. And when I wanted to stop, I ran and ran. Then finally I walked a tiny bit because I had cramps. Then I started running again and running and running. 15K is 9.3 miles. It was 94 minutes and 16 seconds of running. It was very long. But strangely, it was fun, and I was very happy as I came to the end, spotted Jason -- who gave me a high five rather than snap a photo -- and crossed the finish line. With splits of 10:08, it wasn't too shabby. And if only I hadn't stopped to walk, I might have broken 10! Drat those cramps. Of course, looking at my results (enter 'Hourihan'), I've got a ways to go. Those other runners are fast!

The smell of burning

Apparently after I last posted, the fan on the web server that hosts this site shuffled off its mortal coil, and headed for a higher fanly plane. And because of the timing of things, it took a long time for the replacement to settle into its new home. But now it's here, and I've certainly forgotten everything I intended to write. The more I think, "I need to write more posts!" the less I ever write. Perhaps now with the new humming fan, things will get back on track. Oh yeah, and A-Rod to the Yankees?! Argh!

The smell of grass

The most amazing thing about San Diego so far: the smell of grass. My nose had grown so accustomed to the scents of winter, that cold lifeless bitter slightly salty smell that's permeated New York City for the past three+ months. And then this morning, I stepped out of the hotel, ran down to a jogging path, and my nose was assaulted. Everywhere was the lushest, greenest grass, its scent permeating the air. A smell I take for granted in the summer suddenly seemed like a wondrous treat. Grass! Thick green grass! Who knew it could smell so beautiful?

On the plane to San Diego

Back before all this weblogging stuff, I used to work as a consultant. Every Monday I had to get up and fly off to some city (Newark NJ, Bloomington IL by way of Chicago, Atlanta, etc.) where I'd spend the week working on-site at the client's office, and then I'd fly home on Friday afternoon, often barely arriving in time for dinner. I'd have two days home, and then be off again bright early Monday AM. It was fun and grueling, and this morning I got a little taste of my old life.

I woke up at 4:45 AM to catch a 7 AM flight to San Diego for the O'Reilly Emerging Technology Conference. At the gate I noticed my former compatriots, the Monday morning business travelers. During the pre-boarding, I was the only woman, surrounded by men with suits, briefcases, and trench coats. It was just like the old days, and yet it wasn't, thanks to the amazing technology advances in the past six years. In the past it used to take me two laptop batteries to make it across the country, and even then, I'd often run out. And as for music, I was pretty much limited to the amount of CDs I could carry with me. So far today I've been flying for over three hours and I've got nearly 50% of my battery left on my iBook. My iPod also still has half its charge, and over 4 straight days of music sit at my fingertips. Pretty incredible, it sure makes for a more pleasant trip. Now if only they could do something about speeding up the flight, and warming up the plane!

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