the new awesome

whatever we are blogging about, that's the new awesome

Saturday, April 28, 2007

First houseguests of the summer are the new awesome

Looks like summer is here because the first fun house guests have arrived!

You should know that we have already gone in the sea.
(the psych up)

(the swimming)

(the triumphant afterglow)

and flown kites that look like birds.

and sat back to back in the sand.

All I know is that someone had better come up with a name for this summer quick, because it is totally here.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Pizza adventures are the new awesome

My brother in law Joseph McRae and his business partner Colton Soelberg are in the final stages of preparation before opening their very own upscale pizzeria in Provo, UT (I'll post more about this in the near future). When I say pizzeria I'm sure the images that come to mind are beer mugs and glass shakers full of Parmesan cheese and crushed red peppers but that's not what you're going to get at Joseph & Colton's place.

They have been inspired by a few places here in SF so Steve and I thought it would be a good idea to check them out. The first place we tried and our absolute most favorite is called A16.

Their menu is amazing...we shared their steak carpaccio & arugula salad and also their white bean puree for starters. Then we ordered the margherita pizza with prosciutto de parma added. AMAZING.

I loved that I was drinking a "Diet Coke Lite" from a cute bottle.

Another place we tried was Pizzeria Delfina on 18th. Also amazing (and conveniently located ten feet away from arguably the best bakery in San Francisco, Tartine). We didn't love the pizza quite as much here but their fresh-stretched mozzarella appetizer was maybe the best thing I've ever eaten.

And just in case you think we've only been trying out fancy-shmancy pizzerias, let me tell you that we also had a fantastic, less-fancy, super celebrity experience at Pizza Orgasmica on Clement St. Not only did we share a great salad and pizza here, we also ate at the table next to our new best friend Conan O'Brien.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Earth is the new awesome

Over the past few months I've tried to pay more attention to the environment. In my own small ways I've made positive changes. I'm recycling my Diet Dr. Pepper cans, I don't spit my gum out the car window anymore and sometimes I even reuse zip-loc bags. If I'm not careful people might start calling me a hippie.

Some other hippie/tree hugger/granola/liberal tendencies I've developed recently are:

1) I have a new favorite TV show called Planet Earth.

(*SPOILER ALERT* The seal dies when the great white snatches it up in it's scary jaws and launches itself out of the ocean)

Also turns out I love gazelles and other wild animals that run really fast including wild hunting dogs and snow leopards.

2) I decided to try and be cooler and start listening to NPR. Any respectable hippie/tree hugger/granola/liberal listens to NPR right?

(*SPOiLER ALERT* NPR is just a regular news station except on NPR everyone has to speak in a really soothing monotone voice and never ever laugh)

The one good thing about listening to NPR is being able to have conversations with people that begin with "Today when I was listening to NPR..."

3) Tonight I went to Rainbow Grocery for the first time. Rainbow is like Whole Foods for hippies. There were so many bulk bins my head almost exploded but still, I think I'll head back again when I have a few hours to kill and tons of $$ to spend on high priced organic produce.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Camping (like a pansy) is the new awesome

This weekend I went camping in the Redwoods of the Santa Cruz Mountains.

Some things of note about this camping trip:

1) I ate better food than I would have if I had stayed home

2) Because we drove our car right up to the campsite and there was no having to hike into any place with all of my provisions tied to my back, I got to bring a large squishy mat to sleep on that made for a very comfortable night's sleep

3) I showered right before I left, and then showered again right when I got home, effectively minimizing my dirty time to a little over 24 hours

4) I never took off those clothes that I am wearing in that photo. I put them on right before I left my apt, arrived in them, campfired in them, slept in them, hiked 11 miles in them, and then drove home in them. (Because changing your clothes when you are camping is too much of a pain, duh.)

5) Though I have nothing against multiple-day hardcore hiking trips, I think this is my favorite way to camp

Thursday, April 19, 2007

The Shins are the new awesome

Last night, we decided to go see a show, so we hopped on the N-Judah and went down to Market Street. We almost settled for a show at the Market Street Cinema, where you can "see the beauty" and "touch the magic" ...

But then we saw this sign across the street at the Warfield and decided to go there insted.

The last time I saw the Shins, it was several years ago at Kilby Court, a venue approximately the size of my current apartment. (That means it is small.) So it was funny to see them in a venue with chandeliers and one million people this time around.

As if a $40 ticket price wasn't enough, if you look closely below you will notice that several of their "organic" shirts were selling for $50. $50? $50! Shins. Who do you think you are? That is the kind of stunt that some big band like the Rolling Stones would pull. Unless the shirt was previously sweat upon by one of the Shins. In which case, I could understand needing to charge a little more.

I really liked seeing these guys live again. It isn't even that they do anything all that special in their shows. There isn't that much rocktalk. They don't play obscure B-sides that you feel lucky to have ever heard live. The beauty of the Shins show is that everytime they start to play another song, your heart skips a beat and you get all excited and say "ohmygosh-i forgot that this was my favorite song!" Every time.
Grace, Me, Betsy and half of Steve's head all really, really enjoyed the show. I think in our own way we still got to see the beauty and touch the magic.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Back from Australia is the new awesome

Well everyone, I'm home already! I have all sorts of photos and stories from the trip, but let's cut to the chase and give you the pictures that you are really expecting to see ....KANGAROOS!

Big kangaroos and little kangaroos. We saw them all.

My friend Quinn demonstrates how to befriend a wild kangaroo:
First give it a little food.
pat it gently on the neck.
when it seems comfortable with that, grab it forceably by the neck...
and force its fuzzy face into yours to make it look like it is kissing you.
Incidentally, this is also how I discovered that kangaroos don't bite. Because seriously, what self-respecting kangaroo would honestly allow you to grab it like that if i could defend itself?

The funniest thing was that often, after going and looking at a kangaroo or other exotic australian animals, the gift shops and restaurants all offered you the chance to eat them as well.

My trip was so much fun. I have decided that I love australia. Like the 'i could live there some day' kind of love for australia. Especially Melbourne. I loved that city.

Maybe that is because in a lot of ways it felt just like the United States, except that the accents are sexier, you can't buy a bottle of water for less than $2.50, and all of their toilets all have a weird dual flush option so that you can save water. (Don't tell anyone, but I was always too scared to do the half-flush option)

Sydney felt a lot like SF. They have a bridge and a bay and lots of stylish (sometimes gay) people hanging out all over their pretty pretty city.

also awesome?

i drove on the wrong side of the road (and car)

the beaches were lovely and you don't even have to wear a swimsuit if you don't want to! Also, budgie smugglers are totally encouraged ("budgie smuggler" is australian for speedo)

the street markets and shopping were awesome, and i got some great handmade stuff to show off at home
I saw the tiniest penguins in the world come ashore and waddle to their nests.

I went diving and snorkeling in the Great Barrier Reef, and found that all those fluorescent colors that Disneyland used in their 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea submarine ride are not just because they make the ride look more exciting, but are all totally true to life. Angel fish and clown fish really do just swim around in big colorful groups and giant clams really do have iridescent lips. It was completely amazing.
Australia, you and the 14 hour plane flight that I took totally rocked my world. I hope to see you again some day so soon, because I have a feeling there is a lot more to see and do.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

CBG comics is the new awesome

My good friend Brian has always been a comic book geek. So much of a geek in fact that he wrote and drew himself his very own!

The comic is called "So Super Duper" and you can check out a preview here.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Being tall is back to being the new awesome

So my new job sometimes requires me to look extra professional. It's not that I've spent the past 8 years of my life looking like a slob at work, I've just never really needed to wear a full blown suit. I started on my mission of finding the perfect suit about 2 months ago and yesterday it finally all came together. The main problem I was facing is that at 5'10" (which is not even THAT tall), pants are usually about two inches too short...throw a pair of heels into the mix and it's even worse. And blazers are no better. If I try on one more blazer where the sleeves come up to the middle of my forearms I might cry. So I started looking around. I went to Banana Republic and bought a nice pair of pants that I foolishly thought were long enough but sure enough, once at home with heels on, no good. So I go online and find that Banana Republic now makes their suiting in "tall!" Hooray!!! Well, once I was ready to drop the $300 on pants and a blazer I realized that I was not the only tall girl happy about this development. Because everything was sold out. Except the white suit. But yeah, no thanks. I even emailed customer service and they told me they had no info as to whether the tall stuff would be restocked. Sigh.

My next stop was JCrew online. They also have "tall" but their suits run about $100 more per piece than BR. But I was getting desperate so I ordered a suit that cost nearly $300 for the blazer and nearly $200 for the pants. I got it in the mail and it was nice. But I was left feeling sad that I had just spent nearly $500 on a suit. Maybe some people like to pretend like $500 isn't that much. But to me, it felt like a lot. There are many other things I can imagine buying with $500.

Enter the Victoria's Secret catalog. I know right? Victoria's Secret? What? Yes. I was paging through the catalog and stumbled upon a whole section of business suits with four different pant styles to choose from and even more cuts for blazers. Best part was the pants came in THREE different lengths! The price point was also much lower...about $70 for pants and about $130 for the blazer. I was skeptical of the quality but decided I should order one because why not?

Well my suit came in the mail yesterday and I LOVE it. It fits so nicely. The pants are the perfect length...the blazer's sleeves are long enough...the tailoring is awesome and it doesn't get wrinkly! And it was only $200 instead of $300 or $500 which means maybe I'll buy two more in different styles and colors. Who would've thought? Not me that's for sure.

Turns out Victoria's Secret has more to offer than just boobies.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Favorite bloggers are the new awesome

Friday night I went to a party hosted by my favorite blogger Tatanka.

I felt a little embarassed for him because his parents wouldn't leave the whole night. I mean they are pretty cool...Shawn wears hip Prada glasses...

And his mom Robyn is totally cute...

But still, embarassing.
There were some out-of-towners visiting so Tatanka threw a party in their honor.
Ryan & Mandy were in town from San Diego...

and Jared and Karen were in town from NYC.

There were a few things at the party that were a given...
Courtney won the DDR tourney...

Betsy's eye was really lazy...

And Morgan, Tatanka's ultimate nemesis (and sister), was channeling the devil.

There was also a small reunion for four girls that all spent their formative years growing up in the south bay.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Easter chickens are the new awesome

This weekend Steve and I decided to scooter down to the Fillmore (the nice part, not the yuck part). The weather was finally nice...perfect for a lunchtime stroll. We ate a delicious meal at Fresca, shared a child's size chocolate orange at Tango Gelato then stopped at the Marc Jacobs store.

As if the afternoon wasn't awesome enough already, guess what you could do for free at the Marc Jacobs store on Easter weekend? They had a professional photographer set up in the giant window display area along with an Easter chicken to take anyone's picture that wanted to. Just like Santa Claus. Then they printed you two copies and put them in a cute envelope and sent you on your way. Most entertaining shopping trip ever.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Leaving on a jet plane is the new awesome

Well, my trip down under is about to actually happen! I fly out shortly and have already realized that I forgot to pack my sweet travel neck pillow. I am so mad. It really seemed like the kind of stylish accessory that I would need for a long, time-travel flight like the one I am about to take (since on the way home, I leave Melbourne at 11:55 on Monday morning and get into LAX at 11:45 Monday morning - 10 minuted before I took off!?! It boggles the mind, and makes me think I am going to need some extra neck support.)

In my absence, TNA will be handled solely by Bets. I know I am leaving TNA in good, capable hands ... though I do worry that without my sunshine presence in the apartment, she might get bored and all you will have to read about are posts about how her kumquats are her only friends.

See you all in a few weeks!

Thursday, April 05, 2007

April cat is the new awesome

Maybe you remember that I bought a bunch of calendars a few weeks back when I was in Berkeley. The calendar I decided to put up in my bedroom was this one:

Each month I'll give you a little glimpse into the awesome that is this calendar.

I give you April cat.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Work friends are the new awesome

Have you ever had a job you got tired of so you left a got a new better job but even though you're gone you feel really lucky that you made so many great friends that you're still friends with? I have. I left my last company a couple of months ago and feel so lucky to have made such great friends while I was there. So even though I told that company "peace out," my friends remain.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Easter - (the natural way) - is the new awesome

Every once in awhile, we need to remind you that we live in San Francisco by doing something just a little bit hippie. This weekend our friend Emily invited us all over to particpate in her family tradition of dyeing eggs the "natural" way - with flowers and leaves and berries - just the way that the Easter Bunny intended.

Of course, doing things the "natural" or "environmental" way also sometimes equates to doing things the gross way. Like using cloth diapers or feeding your garbage to worms that live in a manure/compost bin in the backyard.

It turns out that dyeing your Easter Eggs the natural way isn't all that gross - in fact, it is even more fun than just buying some crappy kit from the store, because this way you get to go steal flowers from your neighbor's yard or Golden Gate Park to plaster all over your eggs!

Well. There were some spiders living in these stolen flowers. I guess that is kind of gross.

Okay - so how do you dye an egg naturally? First you cover your raw egg in all sorts of neat colored plants.

Uh, Shawn? I think your flower might be a little bit big for your egg. Maybe you can put it behind your ear and wear it there all night instead?

Closer, Steve. But it still kind of looks a little like you are wrapping your egg in your dinner salad.

Leave it to Emily to show us how it is done - wrapped in just enough petals to leave a little impression.

Then you stick your covered egg into a little bag fashioned from an old nylon and tie off the ends.

I know, I know. Wrapping your egg in used nylons might be considered a little gross.
But Robyn was just amazed at the new function she found for all of her used hosiery. Looks like you guys might be eating a lot of hardboiled eggs in the near future, Shawn.

Then you boil the wrapped eggs in some water that is full of onion skins that have been soaking, which will give everything a nice redish brown color, or will react with the flowers on the egg. Emily warned us that the colors weren't going to be as bright as we were used to, and that we shouldn't get too caught up in controlling what our eggs came out looking like. For true artists like Betsy, you know that this was a little tough, but it was fun to see the flower shapes appear on the eggs.

Eventually we kind of figured out which leaves left some color and which blocked out the color, so we could take neat leaf shapes ...
... and watch them magically appear dyed on our eggs! Leremy invented this egg that can also be used on valentines day.
Exactly how I felt about it, Betsy.

So although we had no traditional rainbow eggs, these natural ones turned out pretty great.

Mother Nature AND the Easter Bunny would be so proud.