Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Bollywood primer

I know that I will never really be able to explain why I like watching Bollywood movies with their insane song and dance numbers thrown into the middle of extremely long melodramatic love stories (love stories that might include a heist story, or gang warfare, or thriller murder mystery, but always with a love story). I think some of it has to do with the time at which I discovered these movies. I saw my first song/dance video in August 2001, and probably wouldn't have gotten into it nearly so much if i hadn't required some serious escapist entertainment after September 11, 2001.

But anyway, here is a link to some free songs. I like Bole Chudiyan and San Sanana. Dekha Ek Khwab is a beautiful song from a movie that I really like. Mere Ghar Aayi Ek is lovely too. The singer of that song, Lata Mangeshekar holds the world record for the most recorded songs, something like 50,000.

Oops, forgot to say, this was via


I'm totally craving some of those peanut butter cracker things, with the radioactive orange "cheese" crackers. I don't think they have those in the vending machine, but maybe something else will be sufficiently tempting.

Happy Birthday!

ham 'up
Originally uploaded by diblasic.

Yesterday was Isaac's 29th birthday, so we celebrated by getting together with friends and eating a lot of Chinese food and drinking champagne and port.

This is a picture from our honeymoon last November - Isaac is eating some Ham 'Up Doritos. Something that we have only seen in Portugal so far. They really taste like ham. But what's up with the apostrophe before 'Up? Anyway, happy birthday to my own little ham!

Cheers Isaac!

Friday, December 17, 2004

clive owen

clive owen

Hi Clive! Looking good.

Don't you wish you could program your dream life? I would program something naughty with Clive Owen. Instead I'm stuck with weird S&M dreams about the guy that everyone thought was gay in my freshman dorm. I was saying over and over, "please, don't mark my face". So not hot. We were right about that guy by the way. Any guy who takes his date horseback riding on their prom night has got to be gay.

So where art thou Clive?

Tuesday, December 14, 2004


Don't you love that name? I like saying it in my head.


Originally uploaded by diblasic.
This is cool if scary. You can check out a little video of the dry quicksand too. There is an article in the New York Times today about the recently discovered dangers of dry quicksand, just as dangerous as wet. I like the little jet of sand shooting back up. Those wacky physicists figured it out.

best of...what year is it?

I would try to name my best cd's of 2004 off the top of my head, but maybe I should look at my ITunes playcounts to keep myself honest. So this has nothing to do with the CD's that came out in 2004, especially since I think I started off the year looking at other peoples lists from 2003, not having heard any of those things and then having to catch up. Of course, the count is not really representative either, since listening to music on the computer isn't my primary listening mode. Mostly I listen to my mp3 player. But there must be something to be learned from the fact that I listened to one song 54 times.

And what was that song? Embarrassingly, it's this song from a Bollywood movie called Duplicate (which has a pretty inane plot where this mild-mannered chef happens to strongly resemble a gangster, and of course there's a love story, and singing and dancing, but that goes without saying). The love song duet is Mere Mehboob Mere Sanam, and it's so painfully catchy that I feel compelled to listen to it on repeat. Part of the percussion is provided by a loop of the singer going "ohch-ka-koo" over and over again which is my favorite part. Anyway, email me if you want to hear it (or any of the other songs), and I'll send you a link.

So here is the top of the top, with no cheating. These songs are so old for the most part!

Mere Mehboob Mere Sanam 54 times oops, 56 times.
William, It Was Really Nothing (Smiths) 18 times
Radiation Vibe (Fountains of Wayne) 16 times
Chunnari Chunnari (more super catchy Bollywood) 15 times
Stumbling Through The Dark (Jayhawks) 14 times
Save It For A Rainy Day (Jayhawks) 14 times
Shut Up (Black Eyed Peas) 12 times
Oh l'amour (Erasure) 12 times
I'm Gonna Make You Love Me (Jayhawks) 11 times
All The Right Reasons (Jayhawks) 10 times
Hallelujah (Leonard Cohen) 10 times
Knock Yourself Out (Jon Brion, courtesy of Planet Dan) 10 times
Regret (New Order) 10 times
Tailspin (Jayhawks) 9 times
Cracklin' Rosie (Neil Diamond!!!) 9 times
Idioteque (Radiohead) 9 times
Mad World (Tears for Fears) 9 times
White Flag (Dido) 8 times
Such Great Heights (The Postal Service) 8 times
Coming Up Close ('Til Tuesday) 8 times
Barbarella Theme Song (this is the best.) 8 times

Apparently I listened to that Jayhawks album a lot. Other albums that I listened to a lot but mostly on my mp3 player:

The Grass is Blue - Dolly Parton
Car Wheels on a Gravel Road - Lucinda Williams
Dear Catastrophe Waitress - Belle and Sebastian
O - Damien Rice
Chutes Too Narrow - Shins
Pet Sounds - Beach Boys
Garden State Soundtrack (sort of cobbled together incompletely)

That's all I can think of right now.

Thursday, December 09, 2004

steam system down

My workplace is so cold. The temperature in here is down to 62 degrees and falling. I called facilities and they are apparently working on the steam system. What? I'm glad it's 43 degrees outside, at least that is a lower limit where we won't get hypothermia.

I've started drinking hot water from the water cooler, it's kind of comforting.

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

Happy Hannukah!

Did you know that Hannukah is an excuse to eat fried foods? I just found out last year, and I hope to make the most of it this year. It has to do with the story about the oil from the lamp not running out and lasting for eight days. So it is a tradition to fry stuff in oil to celebrate.

I was trying to think of the name for the chocolate Hannukah money the other day, and had to eventually ask Isaac (he's the Jew in the family in case you hadn't guessed). He told me it was "gelt" and I was like oh, that's right. I had meanwhile been going through every Yiddish word I knew in my head, "rugelach, mensch, shtetl, kibbutz, shiksa, shlemeil, shlemazl, gefilte."

Right. Happy Holidays!


Originally uploaded by diblasic.
Our new baby. This was our Christmas splurge. It's only too bad we got the food processor after Isaac made the pie crusts by pastry blending all that butter by hand, and after I tried to mince up those dried figs by hand (it's hard they are so sticky).

Yesterday Kitchenaid wide mouth food processor arrived while we were at home for lunch (leftovers all week, lunch and dinner, as I said) and I had to stay home to unpack it and make something with it. I didn't have anything to chop or shred, but I did have to make breakfast raisin bran muffins (cut the sugar in 1/2, they are even better) so I used the food processor to make them. that was kind of silly. Given that last year's splurge was a Kitchenaid mixer, and I could have just used that since it is much easier to scrape that bowl than one which contains a razor sharp mixing blade. It did add a little excitement to the muffin-makng process, which it sure did need.

Monday, December 06, 2004

dinner party menu

My weekend was more exciting than usual! We had a dinner party on Saturday night which was a lot of fun. We spent a lot of time cooking on Friday night and Saturday (which was mostly enjoyable) and all of it was worth it. It seemed like our friends enjoyed the food and now we will be eating leftovers all week.

This was our menu.

Spiced/Mulled Wine
3 Hungarian sausages (isaac went nuts at the Hungarian Meat Emporium)
cheese (1 Gruyere, 1 gouda-like, 1 creamy brie)
assorted nuts
dates and bacon
shrimp cocktail and sauce
stuffed mushroom caps
goat cheese fig crostini

Roast Pork with Sweet/Sour Chili Cilantro Sauce
Goat Cheese Mashed Potatoes
Wild Mushroom and Leek Stuffing
spinach salad with spicy peanut dressing
green beans

pumpkin pie - Isaac's blind taste test between home-roasted pumpkin and canned pumpkin

The canned pumpkin pie was much preferred by almost everyone. They knew it was canned, but the texture was much nicer on that pie. Poor Isaac worked so hard on the other one, but he had to agree. He made his very first unsupervised pie crusts from scratch, which was pretty cool.

I think the stuffed mushrooms were the other big hit of the night - I personally think the stuffing came out too buttery. i didn't know that was possible. I just followed the recipe, geez. Can't wait to get home and have some of the leftover wine...bad Chris.

sliding penguins

When I was a first year in graduate school and still "just friends" with my husband, he came over one night and brought the movie Alien (or was it Aliens, I think he would be hurt if I couldn't remember because it was very romantic) and then when the movie was over, I turned on PBS, which was one of the only channels I could get on my antenna. And they were playing music videos, but with classical music. Very PBS. And then started the sliding penguin music video, which has haunted me ever since. I can't remember what music was playing. There were these cute little penguins sliding on the ice, sliding into each other, and sliding off of floating icebergs into the water, sliding on their cute little tummies.

Six years later, I can't stop thinking about them.

10 least successful holiday specials of all time

I love the Ayn Rand Christmas special especially.

Sunday, December 05, 2004

found magazine

I have enjoyed looking at this collection of stuff found by people. I have voyeuristic tendencies that way.

This note is one of my favorites - Page Me Later

Thursday, December 02, 2004


Originally uploaded by diblasic.
This is just one of a number of fun Weight Watchers recipes. .

Who said eating healthy couldn't taste great? Though I'm not sure how healthy the "Frankfurter Spectacular" is.

These pictures are not for the faint of heart. View on an empty stomach please. And don't drink anything unless you want it to come out your nose.

Arctic Cam

Arctic Cam in downtown Fairbanks. I think that we all went to a Mexican restaurant in this plaza on the right over the last Thanksgiving I was there.

Too bad I have never seen any Auroras while I was visiting. That's something I want to see someday.


it's been a whole week since I posted here.

Thanksgiving went well, and it was nice to see my family. I really missed going home for Thanksgiving. Last year we were stuck in NY, having just gotten back from our honeymoon, and me just starting my new job. Then for the two years before that we were up in Alaska to see Isaac's family. I was very homesick there too. And it was so dark all the time, and that's just tiring. The sun didn't come up until like 10:15am, and then it was back down by 2:30 or 3. Ugh.

It was my parents' 30th wedding anniversary too, on November 28th. They got married on Thanksgiving day itself at 6pm. So did my dad's parents, strangely.

Thursday, November 25, 2004

Holy Poultry!

So, I didn't realize this when I left New York yesterday, but apparently I'm in charge of Thanksgiving dinner this year. There's only 7 of us, all immediate family, but this is the first year we have done turkey in a while. And my mom is working today so that she can get double-time at her occasional nursing gig. I'm supposed to be prepping said turkey right now! It's supposed to be in the oven in 35 minutes. My sister is supposed to show up to help, but I guess she's not going to get here until much later.

Anyway, there's always the Purdue hotline, available until 3 pm. 1-800-4-purdue. I see Butterball has one too. I found some old string in the drawer from some long ago deceased Butterball. And now I have to go and touch the turkey and bind it with string somehow!

Wish me luck.

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Our new apartment

isaac apartment
Originally uploaded by diblasic.
This was a picture I took when we were moving into our current apartment. That was almost exactly a year ago. You can see how we lacked shower curtain and showerhead.


Originally uploaded by diblasic.
While I'm not ready to post my own picture, I'll post one of my lovely husband. I took this one on our way to Quebec City last month. We met up with Isaac's dad at a conference given in Dad's honor.

It was a beautiful city, and I highly recommend a visit for anyone looking for the European feel without actually crossing the ocean. Too bad it rained on our one day of sightseeing...

Free food!

Just like magic. I can't keep myself from being very excited that today we have a seminar at 4:00, where there will be coffee/tea and cookies. COOKIES! In spite of the fact that I would (almost) never buy cookies for myself, I have no self control when it comes to free junk food.

Then tonight at 6pm, there is a research fellows' happy hour, which means free wine and cheese and beer and fruit. The beer and fruit don't really go together the way the wine and cheese does, it's just the order in which I thought of the free things. Oh, and there are also goldfish crackers. They have one of these things every other Tuesday at "the institute", which is why some of you may have noticed my half-drunk blog-commenting on Tuesday nights. At least I'm not a mean drunk.

Then they have a beer happy hour every Friday. My husband insists on eating enough goldfish crackers at these things so that he doesn't have to eat dinner. He really does that on purpose. We are really not poor, despite my library-going and the free-food gorging. When we were grad students, that was a different story. But the free food/booze frenzy has still not worn off. I wonder if it ever does.

Monday, November 22, 2004

MOMA reopening

So Isaac and I went for a walk on Saturday to see if we could get in to the reopened Museum of Modern Art, since admission was free on opening day. By the time we got there the line was all the way around the block, and they had people shepherding groups of 50 or so people, walking them around the block. Anyway, we decided that even though the admission price is outrageous, we'd rather just pay some other time than wait in the rain for 2 hours and then push up against other wet people inside trying to see stuff. So instead we went to the huge public library branch right across the street. My favorite place and it's free too.

Weirdly, there were some protesters across the street from the museum, some of whom were wearing black masks, and holding signs saying "ART IS DEAD" and maybe "MOMA IS DEAD" or something like that. And a couple of signs with nothing on them, just painted black. I guess they were some kind of performance art themselves or something? Philosophy students representing a movement that I have forgotten the name of? They were being filmed from up close by someone, and then getting confronted by this HUGE tourist looking guy the next time I walked by. I wish I could have stayed to see what happened.

Thursday, November 18, 2004

Bad Bad Boyfriend


I admit it, I really used to like Jared Leto (back in his days as Jordan Catalano, and i think there are some other MSCL fans in the house - didn't I read that rumor about hotbabe?) but what a jerk. No one treats Scarlett like that, NO ONE!

I hope she ditches his lame ass. I'm not throwing out my collection of My So-Called Life episodes yet though.

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

Damian Rice

Another thing for which I suspect I was out of the loop. I heard this song on the preview for Closer, and figured out it was by this guy Damian Rice, and so I finally was able to get the CD from the library. (I am so cheap that I check everything possible out from the library (though no puppets, thank God) but I think that this is really just getting my money's worth when you think about the taxes that we pay in NYC, and I will never again live in a place with a library system so amazing, so I should take full advantage. Is that enough justification for my library nerdiness?)

Anyway, I've only listened to the CD a few times, but I really like it so far. Especially the song from the preview "The Blower's Daughter".

Tuesday, November 16, 2004

gay cowboy movie?

Did everyone but me know that Ang Lee is making a gay cowboy movie with Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger? Please let it be better than The Hulk. Ang really let me down on that one.

Forgot that I do have something exciting to blog about!

I was feeling all mopey, blog-reading, and not thinking of anything to post. But then I remembered my weekend celebrity sighting!

Went out to lunch with Isaac (previously unnamed husband) and another friend to an Indian buffet on Saturday. And who should we see but...Geraldo Rivera. Eww. And double eww, because he was with this woman who could have been his daughter. She was kind of skanky looking, wearing these huge hoop earrings and looking like she should be chewing gum even if she wasn't at the time. But the point is not to diss the girl, but to commend her for being able to not gag as Geraldo took off her coat for her, and then got into the booth with her and kissed her in an unfatherly way, and then he got out of the booth and escorted her, with his hand on her elbow up to the buffet line like they were walking down a red carpet. Surreal.

I guess midtown is where you see this level of celebrity. But if I wanted to see some better looking younger celebrities I guess I should head further downtown maybe. That's the impression I get from reading the Gawker Stalker at least.

Friday, November 12, 2004

Thursday, November 11, 2004

Sporadic Over-Organizer and Smut Abuser

So, I've been keeping track of all the books that I read. I've only been doing this faithfully for a few months, and the rest of the books I tried to kind of reconstruct from what I could remember.

So, blog-readers, would you like to know what I've been reading? Well, I've got 3 categories of books on my Excel spreadsheet. First are the books that are "not too trashy," stuff that might be in the literature section or something. Second are the "mystery/suspense" books. Third are the ones that I don't usually admit to reading. You might call them relationship-based, chick lit (gag) or the female equivalent of porn. Yup, the romance genre. Whatever, I'm trying to cut back on the amount of shame in my life, and so I have decided not to worry about reading this smut too much.

But I can't help but look at the spreadsheet's breakdown: I've read 23 untrashy books, approximately 58 mystery/suspense books, and then 42 romance books, which are probably the ones most underrepresented because let's face it they are all pretty much the same and I couldn't remember any of the titles once they are returned to the library. The spreadsheet doesn't lie! I'm addicted to trashy books.

can't wait to get home

Because I am about to finish a really good book. At least I hope I still think it's really good at the end. I've been reading Middlesex for the last 5 days, and so far, really really good.

I am only worried I think because I recently had a bad experience with Corelli's Mandolin. (I haven't seen the movie and I'm not planning on it because I think that Nicolas Cage should be banned from all leading man roles.) I thought that it was a really interesting and good story, and loved the war-love story thing, but then they really messed up the ending. And it seemed like it was totally stolen from Love in the Time of Cholera too. I guess the author would have been too cookie cutter to just have the story have a normal happy ending, but in trying to make it different it ended up being cookie cutter in a different way. Apologies to anyone who diagrees.

Anyway, here's hoping that the book ends well.

Annoying me right now:

Why do the announcers on NPR have this weird NPR cadence and inflection to their speech? Actually it might only be the station here. But recently the female local person who announces things like the temperature and sponsors in between the national programs switched to another female local announcer person. And their inflections are identical. Maybe it's the fault of the first woman who trained in the new one, and told her she had to talk that way, no matter how dumb and affected it sounds.

Tuesday, November 09, 2004

can you say post-election depression?

It's true, I've been depressed. I went to Pennsylvania to get out the vote, and as my husband put it, we were kind of like the cannon fodder in the battle (which was won) in the war (which was lost). I haven't been very productive at work. But I'm still sorry for neglecting my blog. It's much easier to post here when my blood alcohol level is raised. That's for sure.

Friday, October 29, 2004

This may be considered dorky but

I'm so excited about the new Bridget Jones movie.

Reasons include:

1. Mark Darcy/Colin Firth

2. It looks really heartwarming in the trailer the way that Mark Darcy
loves Bridget even though she is a normal-sized woman and not

3. I thought the book was very funny.

4. I love Jane Austen, and I'm hoping that the movie has lots of Jane
references like the book.

Here's the delightful trailer. BJD2 I don't watch much TV, so maybe
they are playing it on TV already too? Haven't seen any subway or
phone booth ads yet.

fountains of lovin' cheese

Nacho Cheese Fountain

I almost retched. I thought this might be some kind of Wisconsin cheese-craziness related promotion, but these people are out in San Diego. My friend is getting married out there next April, and maybe she's in time to reserve one of these babies. Because nothing says class like molten flowing nacho cheese. 25 pounds of it!!

Shamelessly stole this site from NewYorkish

Thursday, October 21, 2004

Marriage Rights

My friend sent me a link to these ads this morning. I hope they are getting lots of airplay, but I wouldn't know because I don't have cable. I wonder if they are playing in swing states more than other states anyway though...

Anyway, Threats and Permission are both really good. Permission especially because the music in the background is "Mad World," the version from Donnie Darko. That's one of my favorite movie songs.

Marriage Rights Ads

Actually, I tried to watch the piercing one and I almost threw up. I guess that I'm more squeamish than I thought. Yuck.

HS reunion again

Yeah, I can't stop thinking about it.

First of all, why didn't I look better? Now that the vanity is out of the way...

Why didn't more interesting people show up? It's really too bad. There were people that I needed some closure with. Like the guy who asked me out to lunch once, and we mostly talked about one of his best friends (who I admit I had kind of a sick misguided crush on) and then I realized only years (YEARS, people!!!) later that I think that lunch was supposed to be a DATE. Oh My God. I need closure.

And why did I still not have the guts to talk to some of the people who were too cool for me in high school? Especially since they were so trashed I'm sure they would have thought that: (a) I looked really hot and (b) I was one of their best friends.

There's always the 15 year reunion.

high school reunion

I had a good time at my 10 year high school reunion this weekend. And I re-met one of my classmates who lives in Hoboken and is a photographer. I looked at her website, and thought some of the pictures were amazing.

Erika Larsen

Thursday, October 14, 2004

jesus is my coach

jesus is my coach
Originally uploaded by diblasic.

I was tipped off to this website by one of my friends years ago, but might as well recycle it for the old blog. Since I've got nothing else to say.

Don't forget about the gymnastics and ski coach Personal Lord and Savior!

Saturday, October 09, 2004

Election Obsession

I will try not to obsess about the election.

I will try not to obsess about the election.

I will try not to obsess about the election.

But when there are websites like this, it's so hard.

Overheard in NY

I'm so nosy, I really enjoy overhearing conversations. And here's a whole website of them.

Aural Voyeur Heaven

Limits of pumpkin love

I like pumpkin. Especially in combination with some fat and sugar (pumpkin pie) or lots of fat and lots of sugar (pumpkin gooey cake). Also, these Afghan pumpkin boulanee (bolani kadu) have sometimes prompted me to have a meal of appetizers alone. I guess that falls into the pumpkin + fat category too.

But last night we went to the Heartland Brewery, one of a chain in NYC, and had their seasonal sampler, including the pumpkin beer. First of all, I couldn't really taste the pumpkin. Hmm. I could taste some of the cloves and cinnamon that they put in, but I was basically underwhelmed. The Octoberfest on the other hand was pretty nice and so was the Oatmeal Stout.

Makes me want to brew some beer.

Friday, October 08, 2004

I Hate Sports

Wow, it feels good just to say that.

my mp3 player

I've been listening to the following playlist for the past 3 days straight on my mp3 player. My mp3 player is just a little flash drive sized one, and I can't change the order of the songs, but I've come to appreciate the random order.

Outside the Palace – Violent Femmes
How Come? - D12
Let Go – Frou Frou
Telephone Book – Violent Femmes
Don’t Panic – Coldplay
One of These Things First – Nick Drake
Will He Be Waiting for Me? – Dolly Parton
That’s Just What You Are – Aimee Mann
Make Love Fuck War – Public Enemy and Moby
Santa Monica – Everclear
Birthday – Sugar Cubes
More Than This – Roxy Music
Careful – Guster
Polyester Bride – Liz Phair
Why Can’t I? – Liz Phair
Such Great Heights – Postal Service
New Slang – The Shins
Girlfriend in a Coma – The Smiths
Just Like Honey – Jesus & Mary Chain
There is a Light that Never Goes Out – The Smiths
The Good Book Song – The New Main Street Singers
When You’re Next to Me – Mitch & Mickey

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

I can't believe

So, I can't believe my first actual post was about something so shameful as Temptation Island. I have seen that look in people's eyes when I mention that I've watched the show. It's like instantly losing any credibility one might have had. So it begins...

Temptation Island Alumni

So, I used to be a pretty big fan of Temptation Island. 1, 2, and 3. Survivor held no appeal, but somehow TI was like a train wreck not to be ignored. And so I got interested in what the cast members are doing now. They are an illustrious bunch. Catherine, from TI2 was involved with musical theatre. Now, she has moved on to greater things, such as the Lingerie Bowl and the Reality Revue. It's so great to see people achieving their dreams.

Football related smut?

Tuesday, October 05, 2004