Nigel Slater‘s Ripe is a gorgeous object: a heavyweight, clothbound, coffee-table tome that isn’t so much food porn as gastronomic erotica. There are gorgeous photographs throughout, of apricots poaching in fragrant tea and berries swooning on pillows of cream, of lacy stalks of blossom and rough hunks of pie. Ripe makes a pair with Slater’s previous book, Tender, both focused on the garden and the plate. Tender takes you through the cook’s vegetable patch and here, we’re guided through his orchard – a term he admits is generous for his tiny London backyard.
These are kids’ sandals, really, but I started noticing them on various stylish grown-up ladies in the city, and they have proved to be a great little summer investment. They’re designed to be worn in & around water (hence the name) but they’re surprisingly comfortable for running around town in the summer, a season that, after all, kids have figured out best. They’re less than $40, and you can get them here.
“Lunch Hour” is one of the most inventively curated, gorgeous, surprising, and witty exhibitions I’ve had the pleasure of exploring. It covers a huge amount of material lightheartedly and is a great exercise in cultural history, something I’m thinking a great deal about at the moment – what it is, exactly, and how to write or tell it well. The exhibition’s theme tracks major cultural changes throughout the twentieth century, in New York and beyond, as the rhythm of the workday changed, along with the place and nature of food within it. Continue reading
[there are no photos of me running. For good reason.]
Well, the heatwave itself (apparently we’re on wave #3 for this summer so far) isn’t the draw, so much as the feeling that is starting to build that I don’t just want to run, but I feel bad if I don’t. I’m starting to like the focus, the rhythm, the achievement, and the very literal burn. I’ve run every now and again in the past, but I was a champion excuse-maker (bad weather, bad shoes, bad timing…). Of those, the only one that I’ve actually taken steps to solve is the bad shoes/equipment. It made a huuuuge difference to go down to JackRabbit and get fitted, on a treadmill, for proper shoes to correct my inward-leaning arches. Nagging ankle and shin pain? Gone. I feel properly supported and secure.
Fullest of moons
Happy new year, loyal blog readers, if you’re out there?! We’re currently having the most beautiful, unseasonally sunny and warm weather in New York; after a cold snap on Tuesday that made me run home and buy a bright red down-filled coat from Brooklyn Industries (on sale, everyone, and highly regarded by People Who Know), it is balmy April weather all around. So for once we took advantage, and went for a walk in Central Park to reacquaint ourselves with New York after what seems like a really long time away in England. Some pictures…
Skaters, of course.
Did I mention it was a beautiful day?
No, seriously. It's January.
A handsome, literary gentleman. The park's full of 'em.
Starlings in flight
No idea *what* these knobbly little fruits (?) are...
Time Warner Center at dusk
It’s insanely hot in New York right now, even for my lizard-blooded self, so it’s not exactly hammock weather. But last weekend, which was warm, overcast and breezy, was perfect for a little riverside lounging. We snagged one of the little row of hammocks in my new favorite park, Gantry Plaza State Park in Long Island City, and, well, it was a pretty nice way to spend a Saturday afternoon. The hammocks are low to the ground and pretty swingy – it took some shifting about to get comfortable, and you have to be fairly in synch if you’re going to share. But it’s worth it. Come on, it’s a HAMMOCK.
Handy tree for chaining the bikes
Cloud-gazing from the hammock
Monday 4th was a bonus: a warm day, and a relaxed extension to an already pretty chill weekend (at least for me – I met a big deadline late last week and have been recovering, but T is in full-on high-gear work mode, preparing for the Trivia Championships of North America in Vegas this weekend, in addition to everything else.) But by the late afternoon, we were free to get the bikes out once again and head over to our friends Nick and Dana’s apartment in Woodside, to consume our share of the July 4th American Hot Dog Mountain. We could hear fireworks but not see anything, so we watched a lovely sunset and listened to what sounded like distant gunfire.
Pink sunset over Queens
Liberty, Budweiser and American Spirit.
Gonzo the watermelon-hound
We braved an overcast sky to head to Central Park on Saturday for a fantastic free show by the LA retro-soul band Fitz & the Tantrums. The sun won out, it was baking hot and they played a killer show. This is their ridiculously catchy single, ‘MoneyGrabber’:
This pic has been doing the rounds, but it’s great. Via The Political Carnival, although I’m not sure of the original photographer. A fabulous night for the city (and the state) – just in time for Pride on Sunday.
Red bench, grey cobbles
1. The inspiration: the 2006 ensemble movie Paris Je t’Aime. From the silly to the sublime, there are 20 five-minute films, each set in a neighbourhood of Paris. I loved Walter Salles & Daniela Thomas’s ‘Loin du 16ème’ and Alexander Payne’s ’14ème Arrondissement’ which had me bawling.
2. Saveur Magazine’s French picnic menu. Summer in Paris is all about the pique-nique, on the Pont des Arts or the banks of the Seine.
3. Via Chocolate & Zucchini and Paris by Mouth, the announcement of the hotly contested top ten baguettes in Paris. Au Levain d’Antan, 6 Rue d’Abbesses in Montmartre, will supply the president with his daily bread for the rest of the year.
4. Inès de la Fressange’s new book Parisian Chic, bound in red leather and full of cutesy drawings, is the latest how-to-be-French guide for sad lumpen Anglo-Saxons. I snark, but I will admit to being a sucker for this stuff.
5. I absolutely love the Paris Color Project over at Little Brown Pen. I bought a bunch of their miniature calendars for friends last Christmas, and there are beautiful postcards and prints in their Etsy store.