Wow, well that got very heavy last night. I had no idea what time it was getting to be - and between getting way too into writing and the fact that I'd worked a 12 hour Saturday, a 14 hour Monday and a 12 hour Tuesday...I'm kinda wiped out tonight. Decided to walk up through the park after work tonight then come home, cook myself something yummy for dinner (pasta, prosciutto, and peas, a recipe I got straight from a Cipriani - fo'real! - didn't come out quite as good as usual 'cause I was doing it from memory & I got the flour to milk proportion a little wrong - nothing some fresh-grated Romano couldn't mend though) and then do a couple of the easier questions. Goal is bed by 11:00 & 8 hours of sleep. OOOOH - on the walk up through the park, I saw a screech owl! Cutest little guy - I noticed a bunch of people with some serious professional wildlife photographer type cameras (ultratelephoto lenses and stuff) and went over and asked them what they were seeing and they pointed him out (he was sitting in a knothole looking like he was trying to decide whether he was really ready to get up & go hunting or maybe doze off for a few more minutes). Very exciting. Nice thing about Central Park for a non-birdwatcher who might not notice an interesting bird herself, but does like to see things like owls, is that if there is something as interesting as an owl around, it's likely to already have a few real birdwatchers in attendance - spot the birdwatchers, and they are always great about telling you what they're watching. In fact one of them loaned me a pair of binoculars. He was SO cute. Little round guy. The owl, I mean, not the birdwatcher - she was a she, for starters! There were two guys but they were glued to their cameras & even if they hadn't been I was so transfixed by the owl, they coulda been Johnny Depp lookalikes and I might not have noticed. The owl was an Eastern Screech Owl, the guy with the best camera said (his lens looked like it could shoot those footprints on the moon). Very very neat. I'm so glad I decided to walk through the park for a change.
So...how about some easier questions tonight!
I'll start with Sardonic Bomb Scott's:
How do you boil an egg?
You either put the egg in a pot of water, and then bring the water to a boil or you bring a pot of water to a boil and put the egg in - my mom has a specific order & I can't remember which it was but one of them cuts down on yolk discoloration. Boil until done (er - I have to admit that I'd need to check on the cooking time - I'm more of a scrambled eggs person myself, especially when I've just made spaghetti sauce & remembered to hold aside a little bowl of chopped peppers & onions & mushrooms to throw in) Drain water. Run cold water over egg (another thing my mom does - I think it makes it easier to peel - or was that the part that keeps the yolk looking nice?).
Phew. One down...5 minutes to bedtime...hm, maybe I'll make that 11:15...
What novel would I make you read?
Well - this was tough. For starters, I'm handicapped in that I'm not at home. If I were home I'd go stand in front of my bookshelves until something jumped out. I tend to have my favorites - I think the one that spends the most time out being read & reread is for some reason is The Beautiful and Damned. My Dorothy Parker collection also tends to spend more time out on the coffee table by my supercomfy reading couch than away on a bookshelf - that's great for just a quick dip into before bed. But actually I think the one novel that everyone should have a chance to read is Moby Dick. No joke. One catch though. I think that everyone should have a chance to read this book just for fun.
I mean, here's this poor book - laden down with seriousness, and symbolism (The Whale Represents Such and Such, and the Gold Piece Represents Such and Such, and the Fish Bones in the Chowder At the Try Pots Represents Something Else Entirely, and so on) the reputation of being one of those daunting Books You Must Read, Classic of American Literature, Bane of the Essay Section of the AP English Exam...Big Book, Heavy Reputation, scary monsters.
Somehow I never ended up actually studying this book in school (there are some strange holes in my education caused by moves), and in fact I never read it until a couple of years ago. Never even CONSIDERED reading it in fact! I was frightened off by the size, and by this general sense that reading it was going to be more an exercise of willpower than a pleasure.
But then one day I was browsing a used book seller's table & I found a secondhand copy paperback edition for a buck & said "OK, if this is such an Important Classic of American Literature I suppose I should at least give it a shot. I took it home & got going - completely prepared to be bored to tears and give up in complete mystification after the first chapter..
I could NOT put the darned thing down! I think I was up until 3 am. I mean, there under all the Heavy Reputation is one HELL of a good yarn! He picks you up, he sets you down first looking out at the sea, then getting ready to go whaling, then off to sea, and you're out there on the sea, on a sailing ship, after a whale, you can just hear the wind in the shrouds...it totally rocks. Really. Awesome. Stuff.
Now - no, I'm not proud that I don't know all the Heavy Deep and Real stuff behind it. Anybody who HAS studied it would recognize my facetious comment on the symbolism of the fish bones as a statement of someone whose impression of looking at this book on a scholarly & analytical plane is based entirely on the long ago grumblings of classmates who were writing term papers on it. Now that I've gotten familiar with it on the simplest level, I think it would actually be fun to go back & delve into the more mysterious stuff underneath. But I'm actually sort of glad that my first actual reading WAS just for fun - and that when I say fun, I really do mean that!
I guess what I'd really like the most for people to get is that moment I got to experience - when all the sudden I found that this piece of literature I'd always somehow thought would be ponderous and dull turned out to be...well, really pretty damned cool.
ok...2 more! these ones I can do quickly...
Ignacio is making me blush...
Would I wear a black velvet dress with a simple diamond necklace?
Well - I have a very nice little black velvet dress - haven't worn it in ages 'cause fact is it's the sort of thing that I, at least, would only wear if I wanted to look good FOR somebody who was actually going appreciate that I was trying to look good for them. That particular planetary alignment hasn't happened in quite some time. However, back when it was happening (which is when I got the dress in the first place), I wore it with a small choker made of black, iridescent glass beads. I think I'd feel a little self-conscious with diamonds.
Short & unpainted fingernails?
Of course! Whaddaya think? Sailor/paddler that I am, scarlet talons are so not me. Arrrr.
In fact I've only had a manicure once in my life - nothing crazy, French tips, very subtle, an editor at a company I worked for years ago had gotten hers done that way & I kind of liked the way it looked & decided to be a girly girl for once. They looked great for about 10 minutes. Then I got my first chip. I don't understand how other women manage to actually keep nail polish intact while living a normal life that includes things like digging in a purse after change and, oh, opening doors and pressing elevator buttons. I sure couldn't.
I did my tags tonight! I've passed it on to a few people from my "All Their Fault" link list:
Tuna Girl, and
Some Amusing Blog Pun
Alan (Some Amusing Blog Pun) has drawn himself a few ground rules in the interest of preserving some dignity - seems fair to me. OK - although I was not as up-front about it, truth be known, if I had gotten any really x-rated type questions I think I might have done the same. Aside from the fact that I personally, having had a fairly conservative upbringing, would not feel comfortable with turning this into some blog version of The Vagina Monologues, there is always this thought in the back of my mind that I would rather not write anything in here that I wouldn't want my parents to read. I think they'd really enjoy knowing about this - I've been having a hard time not telling them about it in fact.