Sunday, August 24, 2008


The Chinese/Zhang Yimou part of the Olympic Closing Ceremonies was beautiful, powerful, perfectly executed, and as stunning to see as his movies Hero and House of Flying Daggers. (Both are must sees on a big screen, BTW.)

Then they get to the London part, as a preview of the 2012 Games. To whet our appetite, apparently, for cliches. The double decker bus comes along to pick up some extras from Godspell, and then wheel out Jimmie Page with some chick badly lip synching "Whole Lotta Love" to illustrate the "excitement" of these upcoming events in the UK.

First of all, thank god New York didn't get the Olympics. I seriously cannot imagine what a clusterfuck it would have made the entire city. Although on the plus side, there would have been beach volleyball courts 5 blocks from my house.

Secondly, the contrast between those two spectacles shows why the Chinese are going to rule the world.

10:22 Did the "Its a Small World" ride at Disneyworld throw up all over my TV?

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


..On the week of tomato recipes by two trips to Easton PA for press okays and a bang-up fun mid-August BBQ on Saturday night in the backyard. At least until people (KAPLAN) got wasted on Dark and Stormies, and started screaming, much to the chagrin of the neighbors. Good times. Ironic now that Studio B is closed, and I'm causing more noise than ever.

Tomorrow, SL, Elan and I go up to upstate to Saratoga for two days, meeting up and staying with my old softball pal Tim and his wife Natalie in Schnectady. We stop on the way back at SL sister's farm/artist collective up near Monticello for an all-day pig roast on Saturday.

Who has time to blog?

Monday, August 11, 2008

Monday Lunch: Bruschetta

Easy as can be, and perfect in every way

Good rustic country bread. (Italian of any kind is a good bet)
2 fresh tomatoes, or a pint of small grape tomatoes
Fresh basil
Fresh mozzarella (DiPalo's, or the Salumeria on Graham)

Toast 1/2" slices of bread. Rub thoroughly including all edges with cut piece of garlic. Cut tomatoes into 1/4 squarish pieces, or if using small tomatoes, quarter. Save all seeds and juice and put in bowl. Roll basil and cut into thin crossgrain strips, about 1/4 cup total. Cut mozzarella into same size pieces as tomatoes. Toss all with 1-2 tbslp of olive oil, salt and pepper. Spoon mixture with some juices onto crostini. Enjoy mkaing a big mess when you eat it.

Saturday night: In a Mexican Mood

SL and I attempted to go to Alejandro Escovedo on Saturday in Central Park. We trucked it all the way up to Central Park with picnic and papers in hand, not knowing until we got there that Al had unfortunately cancelled because of his ongoing health problems. Ah well. We stayed for a few hours of Mexican Music Day anyway, sitting in the grass, drinking wine and reading the paper on a gorgeous afternoon. Pistolera wasn't bad, and I plotted Saturday's dinner (mostly stolen via Domino magazine).

Assume all my recipes use extra virgin olive oil, kosher salt and fresh ground pepper.

1 pound of fillet of dogfish, mahi mahi, cod, catfish, or red snapper
1 head of savoy or red cabbage
1-2 avocados
2 tomatoes
1 red onion
1 jalapeno
cotija cheese

Heat grill or broiler to medium high. Sprinkle fillets with salt, pepper, olive oil. Grill for 5-6 minutes per side.

Core and thinly slice 1/2 head of cabbage. Toss with 2 tblsp white wine vinegar, salt, pepper

Mash avocado into a chunky guacamole (limes, salt, bit of jalapeno, garlic, red onion)

Chop tomatoes, 1/2 of onion. Add juice of two limes, 1 tblsp minced jalapeno, salt and 2 tblps of cilantro.

Wrap it all up in warmed tortillas. Squeeze more lime, hot sauce and mexican cotija cheese over if desired.

Saturday lunch: The Classic


Soft white bread (Pepperidge Farm makes a not-totally gross one)
Juicy, bestest tomato you can find
Fleur de sel
Fresh ground pepper

Simplest. Cut 1/8" thick slices of tomato. Slather both pieces of bread with mayo. Lots of salt and pepper. Bite. Have orgasm.

A Week in Tomatoes

Tomatoes are in full swing in the markets these days. As always, I can't stop eating them, or talking about them. Even the smell makes me happy -- that moment when you pick up a big handful from a farmer's table and take a big whiff. Ah. Glorious. (Incidentally, tomato smell perfume is available from I Hate Perfume)

Because my biggest project in recent weeks is attempting to cook a banging dinner most nights, upcoming is a week's recipes of how to work tomatoes, and the happiness that tomatoes bring, into your meals.

Friday night

3 tblsp thai yellow curry paste
1 sweet onion, sliced
3 cloves garlic minced
1/4 cup fish sauce
3-4 1/2 cups of water, depending on how thick you want it
Juice of one lime or a bit more to taste
3 kaffir lime leaves, or thai basil (or regular basil if you must)
3 tblsp dark brown sugar
1 tbslp galangal (or ginger if you must) minced
2 thai chilies, sliced into thin rings. (or jalapenos or scotch bonnetts)
2 tblsp lemongrass, cut into 1/2" rings
Can of bamboo shoots
2 vegetables of your choice: tomatoes, carrots, mushrooms, pepper, beans, thai eggplant, zuchinni....
1 pound of shrimp/chicken/pork/fish -- free of skin and fat and cut into thin strips

Saute curry paste with onions and garlic until soft. Add water, fish sauce and lime juice and bring to boil. Add rest of ingredients and simmer for 15 minutes or until all vegetables are soft. Don't let boil again. Serve over rice.

All the ingedients are available at Bangkok City Grocery in Chinatown. This is super simple to make, and will give you 4 platefuls of sweet and sour deliciousness. The Thai chilies are super hot, but necessary.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Show of my Summer

Black Keys last night at McCarren Pool w/Kaplan, Camille, SL, Elan and her two gay stoner friends from upstate*. Absolutely stellar performance on beautiful summer night. How DO two guys get so much sound? In the two-person band category, this killed over any White Stripes show I've had to pleasure to see.

*two 20-ish long haired boys in kerchiefs, numerous piercings, heavy metal shirts, and both as gay as the day was long. They were sweet and amazing. I love the ease gay kids a generation or two younger than me have.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Fire Island

SL and I went to Kismet, Fire Island for four days over the weekend to stay at Seanie McCague's summer rental. We had great weather and a great host, but being crammed into a small space with a lot of really white people from Long Island was not my personal cup of tea. It is definitely a good place to let kiddies run rampant, with no cars to worry about. I bet if I was a fireman's wife, born in Bay Ridge, now living in Syosset with 3 kids, I would love it. Still, nice to check out and continue to get as brown as a nut in the ongoing Tanolympics.

Monday, August 04, 2008

DOB Shuts 'em Down

Studio B has been closed since Friday night because a lack of a Public Assembly Permit, for both floors. Shows scheduled through at least August 19th will not be held at the venue on Banker Street.

Is it snotty to say I told you so??

These folks thought they could break any law they wanted, do whatever they wanted, and no one would stop them. Well, they were WRONG with that assumption.

It's downright ugly to be so arrogant, but it's even more pathetic to be completely stupid. They bought this shitstorm right down on themselves.

Friday, August 01, 2008

CB 1 Votes NO!

Because you want to know about the latest in the "Footloose" hearings, click here for a detailed play-by-play of last night's vote AGAINST approving Studio B's cabaret license.

The upshot is that a letter Julia and I wrote raised quite a stir. Studio B's lawyer, former assemblyman Ken Fisher, was caught in a bunch of his usual arrogant double talking, raising the ire of the Safety Committe Chairman. Thus, the CB decided they will not recommend the issuance of the cabaret license. The roof deck was also shut down by the Mayor's Office of Special Enforcement last Wednesday, at least supposedly until real permits are in place.

Which is all I wanted in the first place: no open air roof deck until 4 am in my backyard -- Not such an unreasonable request. The cabaret license application simply gave us a way to voice our ignored complaints to the community leaders.

The Dept of Consumer Affairs could still issue the license in spite of the CB recommendation against it, but it's one big step towards quieter nights. And now I'm in good with the Nine-Four since Captain Fulton liked my letter so much.

Also: my lobbyist skills are now available for a fee.