Friday, March 26, 2010
I brought up this question last night over dinner. It's the same one that was brought up a few weeks ago on a spring-like afternoon in Central Park, having a picnic of delicious vegan food from Peace Food Cafe and a conversation that has carried out weeks later.
The question that Scott raised:
Q. If you were to call up the 16 year old version of yourself up and you had only 15 seconds, what would you say?
Some of the answers (and we'll keep them all anonymous).
A1. Don't get hung up on high school drama. Have fun, enjoy yourself and don't stress out as much.
A2. Invest in Google. Create Facebook.
A3. Don't let "him" get away.
A4. Try to figure out what you want to do with your life. Don't wait until you're 26.
A5. Take sports more seriously. Work on honing your skills. You're not going to grow another foot but if you try hard you could make it.
A6. Go to a college with great weather. You have the rest of your life to live on the East Coast and hate winter.
What we found amusing was that for the most part, the girls' answers were a composite of emotional regrets and advice of what not to do. As for the guys, they were quick to answer with pieces of advice that could further their career or add more weight to their wallet. For the rest of the responses, check out Ben's coverage of our conversation here.
If I were to call my 16 year old self (pictured below at Nikki's Sweet 16), the following things would probably happen. My dad in his thick accent would randomly pick up the phone at the 8 second mark and scare whoever was on the other line with a blunt "Hello. Who is this?" He's gotten much better since the late 1990's. I would probably think it was a prank call or that I finally got thru to Z100. Was I the 100th caller? Did I win tickets to see Dave Matthews?
So on this gray Friday morning, I'll leave you with this. You can answer the question, leave a comment with your answer or talk about it with friends- but remind yourself that everything will fall into place. You're not Cher, you can't turn back time. What you can do is live for the present and look forward to the future.
Stay bitten ;)
Ben picked me up at the foot of the bridge, where the sign reads "Welcome to Brooklyn: How Sweet It Is." And that's just how our sweet afternoon panned out. In my mind, Ben is the go to Brooklyn guy. He keeps me somewhat current and he's always ahead of the curve when it comes to design, food and music. From diner to Moto, Ben manages to show me the best of what Brooklyn has to offer.
Our Sunday afternoon started off with drinks outside at the Pencil Factory. From there, we headed to a riverside park with his dog and took in the view of the Manhattan skyline. Looking for some shade, we decided to swing by Headhoods. We checked out Clinton's new space and storefront. To get a glimpse of his eccentric and wildly creative space click here. Our last stop was to pick up some sausages and check out the meatheads at The Meat Hook. Thanks to Jenna for telling me about the meat shop with cute men behind the counter, sporting their flannels.
Stay bitten ;)
Monday, March 15, 2010
From Trumptown to the tip of Tribeca, we realized we weren't the only New Yorkers with a spring in their step. Joggers, cyclists, dog walkers, strollers - everyone was out enjoying the slightly warmer weather. Aside from people watching and taking in the Hudson views, there were plenty of things to do along the way. At times, I wished that I brought my camera camera instead of my iphone but it probably would have turned us into tourists and slowed us down. From the Armory Show to renting kayaks, Meredith and I were overwhelmed but happy with all the possibilities of where this day would take us.
Meredith had to refrain from climbing.
After reaching lower Manhattan, we decided to head back to Tribeca for lunch. Tribeca Wine Merchants had a sign outside their store with balloons attached to it. The sign read "free wine tasting." I looked at Meredith and we were on the same page, with both feet already in the door. Free. wine. tasting. Sean, the floor manager, generously filled us up with 5 different wines.
We wandered around Tribeca a little more, browsed the J. Crew men's shop and stumbled upon another free. wine. tasting. Don't mind if we do.
After our wine tasting tour, we decided it would be best to head north and find somewhere where we could sit, eat and people watch. Da Silvano was the place to do just that.
Our West Side Story continued- The Standard Beer Garden for some more wine and ping pong. Not the best combo, but we entertained the spectators and kept ourselves entertained.
It wasn't a standard Saturday but when the rain lets up, I'd like to repeat that day. Maybe with a kayak rental somewhere in between.
Bring on spring, stay bitten ;)
Where to Eat Breakfast/Lunch
Dam Café, Tahoe City – breakfast burritos
Treat Box, Truckee – unreal breakfast burritos
Wild Cherries, Truckee – lunch and breakfast
Where to Eat Dinner
Bridgetender, Tahoe City – burgers
Bar of America, Truckee
Where to Drink
Le Chamoix, Squaw Valley (Apres-ski only)
The Auld Dubliner, Squaw Valley
Pete & Peters, Tahoe City
Fat Cat, Tahoe City
Bar of America, Truckee (often have live music)
Tourist Club, Truckee (can be a major hit or miss)
Where to rent and buy backcountry gear*
The Backcountry, Truckee
Alpenglow, Tahoe City
Tahoe Dave’s, Tahoe City (rental and regular gear)
Granite Chief, Truckee (rental and regular gear)
*in general, be skeptical if a backcountry store does not have a dog in it
Where to stop on the way home for burgers/sandwiches/produce
What to buy Danielle for her birthday
(178, pure carbon)
Where to stay
Crash at Danielle's share house or book a nice room at the Resort at Squaw Creek
Thursday, March 11, 2010
Last weekend, a huge storm made its way through Tahoe, leaving the area with over two feet of snow, often referred to as “sierra cement” due to the high water content in the snow given the warmer maritime climate in California. In colder, drier climates such as Utah or Colorado, snow remains much lighter and fluffier, and more fun to ski. The downside is that it doesn’t fill in rocky mountain faces as well, and it more prone to avalanche conditions. While I find Utah’s snow unrivaled, I have no interest in living in Salt Lake, so Sierra Cement it is. Given last week’s storm, the roads were bad and very traffic filled so the drive took an unreal 8 hours, the longest I’ve ever heard of it taking anyone to drive to Tahoe. Not ideal, and it usually takes three hours each way. We luckily left the city early, so still arrived at a reasonable hour to Bunker Chalet, the ski house I am sharing with 15 others this season. Bunker Chalet is a lovely A-frame house that is just minutes from Tahoe City and its high quality bars and restaurants. On Friday nights, people generally trickle into the house from 4 pm until 1 am , depending if they are traders who can bolt right after the market closes, or have decided to let traffic pass and leave the city at 8 or 9 pm. Friday nights in Bunker Chalet are typically pretty mellow, and everyone sits by the fireplace enjoying a few drinks or heads down to the bars in Tahoe City.
On Saturday morning, the skiers in the house typically get up between 7-9 am to get moving towards the mountain. Twenty somethings become five year old ski schoolers, frantically searching for goggles and gloves before heading to the mountain. Non skiers sleep in, head down to town to walk by the lake or get lunch and hang out in the cozy house until it’s time for après. The skiers typically head to Squaw Valley or Alpine Meadows. I have a season pass at Squaw this year, and have spent the past two winters enjoying the resort. I’ve found it to provide consistently challenging terrain in that the conditions are variable in a way I’ve never seen and one is constantly determining which slope faces have the lightest snow. I’ve never experienced storms as hard as the ones that hit the Sierra’s - often leaving multiple feet of snow on the ground. Headwall is my favorite place to ski on the mountain, a rocky and steep part of the mountain at the highest elevation, and north-facing, which means that it often has the best snow. It often also has no snow, leaving those I’ve led there to curse me as they ski down icy rock faces. I say there is only one way to learn. My mom says wear a helmet. (I do!)
I’ve definitely enjoyed Squaw and continue to find new parts of the mountain to explore, but am hoping to do more backcountry skiing next year, a bit quieter and more peaceful, not to mention not having to fight for powder turns. Squaw’s wide open bowls and rocky terrain is a great place to spend your day, and having the spectacular view of Lake Tahoe provides a nice backdrop. By 3 or 4 PM, even the most avid skiers are thirsty.
Squaw shines during après ski, luring skiers and non skiers alike to a big outdoor porch overlooking the mountains. Après is a great way to catch up with everyone you make plans with but never see in the city, housemates, friends, potential dates. A few shared pitchers later you have fulfilled the age old tradition of après ski, and are tipsy in ski pants on your way back to your ski house, maybe stopping at the grocery store to stumble around and buy enough supplies for a communal dinner.
Here is where I’ll jump back to last weekend, the annual Tahoe City Prom. I will say that my prom dress chose me. The theme was Gold Silver and Bronze, which I interpreted as Olympic-themed, and set off to the thrift stores of San Francisco to find something of that nature. I came across a yellow Canadian ski racing suit in my size. Anyone who has ever watched ski racing can tell you that racing suits are meant for speed, meaning full.body.spandex. Despite not having the build nor the ability of an Olympic skier (if only my parents had foregone my NYC private school tuition to send me to a ski racing academy…my children will suffer no such indignity.) After a brief run in with the shot ski, I donned my yellow racing suit and made my way to prom with friends.
I wasn’t aware there was a competition, but once I was there it was clear that I should have won it. Prom’s other attendees almost entirely interpreted the theme as people un-creatively do Halloween, an opportunity to wear skanky gold clothing. A purist by nature, I would never reduce myself to such an indignity, and my commitment to the cause made it clear that my costume was far and away the most deserving of the prize of Prom Queen and NEW SKIS (which I desperately need – in case anyone is feeling generous I’ll take these carbon fiber DPS’ in the pure carbon 178’ http://dpsskis.com/ski/wailer105. Thanks so much!) My costume was met with more enthusiasm than even the Elian Gonzalez costume I wore senior year at college, which included a six foot diameter water daisy duct-taped to my back. I was quickly recruited by the judges panel to enter the contest, where I danced with another creatively costumed member of the men’s curling team. It came time for the vote. The crowd, photographer and I all know who deserved those new skis. The one girl who spends every Valentine’s Day on windy mountain peaks, who cleared her savings account to buy a touring set up and new custom-fit boots, who took a solo trip to Argentina over labor day because she missed the cold, who considers a package from Patagonia.com the most romantic thing a guy could ever send her (except these - http://dpsskis.com/ski/wailer105 - if any potential suitor of mine ever asks), that’s right, the girl in the yellow spandex racing suit. Dear readers, I’m heartbroken to tell you that injustice reigned that fateful evening, and I did not win my due title of Tahoe Prom Queen. The winner was just another girl in a gold skanky dress, matched with some heinous wig. Creative – no. Knew the judge? Definitely. Never a sulker, I managed to enjoy the rest of the evening and the weekend. (To wrap up a typical Tahoe weekend, Saturday night at the house or at local bars, Sunday skiing and driving home, hopefully with a stop at the world famous produce and burger stand Ikeda’s. Monday back to work, counting down until the next Friday.)
So there you have it. The story of Tahoe and Tahoe Prom. I will contribute my next guest blog this summer, by which time hopefully I will have recovered enough from my defeat to tell you about the breathtaking views of the lake, the beautiful trees, crisp air, cold water, sunshine, friendly people, and year round fun that makes Tahoe one of my favorite places on earth during any season of the year. I cannot more highly recommend any vacation destination!
Tuesday, March 2, 2010
1. Alice in Wonderland in 3D. Don't be late for a very important date. March 5th, Tim Burton's movie hits theaters.
2. Vote for Ben's tshirt design. Click here, he's a clever cat for a hound's tooth.
2a. Another tshirt that got my vote. I got mine on Gilt!
3. It was a sweet surprise seeing Jeff's roommate, Svet, in an email from Anthropologie. She's as sweet and interesting as she is gorgeous.
3a. Also from Anthro, this soap my mom got me. When I first read the label, I thought "frat luxe" now that just can't be possible. At second glance "fiat luxe" proved to be a great little anti-fungal gift, the opposite of anything frat.
4. Locanda Verde and Rouge Tomate. Put them on the top of your list next time you want to go out for dinner. Special thanks to Chris for the VIP treatment ;)
5. J. Crew is featuring muses instead of models, including Carolina, one of Gilt's very talented photographers. Check out the rest of these inspiring women here.
6. SPiN. The ping pong club owned by Susan Sarandon.
7. Lucky 7, lucky me. My favorite music publicist surprised me with an early bday present, tickets to see Temper Trap in Brooklyn.
8. What goes around comes around. Send good karmal and get good karma.
Stay bitten ;)