Monday, September 20, 2010

Music Monday - The Walkmen

Taking a cue from Catcher in the Wry, it's Music Monday here at the house of NSPJ.

Last week, AB and I went to the Fillmore to see one of our favorite bands, the Walkmen. I guess you could say they're kind of "our" band--we went to our first Walkmen show together in 2002, roughly a year after we started dating, and the year their album Everyone Who Pretended to Like Me Is Gone was released. Since then, we've seen them together more than a half-dozen times.

At the show, they played some old favorites as well as a lot of stuff from their new album, Lisbon, which was released that very day. We picked up a copy, and it's been on heavy rotation at home ever since.

At this point, my affection for the Walkmen is more than a little sentimental, but I have a feeling after a listen or two, you'll fall in love with their sound--a combination of gravelly vocals, vintage guitars, and delicate piano:

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Midwest is Best

I don't know if it's because we're headed to Minneapolis-St. Paul next weekend, or if it's because my friends are posting photos from their current trip to Champaign-Urbana, Illinois, but I've been feeling nostalgic for the Midwest lately.

Over the past few weeks, I've been thinking about some of the recipes from my childhood, and the one that kept coming to mind was my grandmother's pineapple upside-down cake. Even though I haven't had it for years, I decided on impulse to buy a can of pineapple rings and a jar of maraschino cherries at the grocery store today, and I whipped up my own version of my grandma's recipe.

The hardest part was flipping it over... considering the amount of butter and oil that goes into this cake, you'd think it would be easy to get out in one piece. Luckily, even though I managed to break off a corner, I was able to put it back together enough that you can't really tell the difference! Clearly, I'm a Midwest Diva. :-)

Monday, May 10, 2010

La Mission

A couple of nights ago, a small group of my friends went to see La Mission, a movie set in the Mission district of San Francisco, starring the Mission born-and-raised Benjamin Bratt, and directed by his brother David. I wasn't quite sure what to expect going in, but it turned out to be one of the best movies I've seen in a long time.

Okay, full disclosure here, Ive lived in the Mission for a while now, and Im completely sure its biased me toward liking this movie -- it's exciting to see the details of my neighborhood on the big screen (even the not-so-pretty ones), particularly when it's done with the careful attention of people who love then neighborhood as much or more than I do.

But I also fell in love with the story, which felt extraordinarily honest as it addressed issues of sexuality, gender, race, and class without resorting to easy answers or neatly-tied-up happy endings. Although they were working with a limited budget and a relatively inexperienced cast (many of them Mission locals), the movie felt heart-wrenchingly real.

Just I was planning to write up this post, I happened across Lorenzo Herrera y Lozano's writeup of their experience of the movie, which I thought was particularly moving (check it out here: If you're in San Francisco, you should get yourself over to the theater to see it while it's here! If you're not lucky enough to have this movie playing in your city, definitely track it down when it's out on DVD. It's a beautiful movie that's worth seeing even if you've never been to San Francisco.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

I'll be there on Saturday... will you???

For all you Bay Area folks...

This Saturday (5/8/10) is the release party for the latest issue of Aorta Magazine, a gorgeous publication that features really rad art and artists. Issues #1 and #2 are permanent fixtures on my coffee table, and I can't wait to get my grubby little hands on issue #3 in t-minus 3 days!

The lineup looks great -- hopefully I'll see you all there! Here are the details, courtesy Aorta's Facebook fan page:

Come see the biggest heartthrobs of the San Francisco literary scene reading some of the hottest poetry and prose. Dance the night away with hard pumping beats courtesy of DJ Puppet. Buy some yummy swag and look at some fantastic art from our very new ISSUE 3 of Aorta Magazine


Words & performance:
Dusty Horn
Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha
Meliza BaƱales
Charles Vasquez
Rose Sims

Delicious visuals from:
Judith Page
Umayyah Cable

Musical temptations by:
Linda Moody
Zoe Boekbinder
DJ Puppet

SHOW @ 8

$5 - 10
(no one turned away for lack of funds)

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Too fat for leggings?

Definatalie wrote this the other day, and I wanted to share it here because it really struck a chord with me.

I love leggings because they're cute and comfortable, but every time I put them on I have a debate with myself about whether to leave the house wearing them.

Not because I felt unattractive (quite the opposite, actually), but because to wear leggings as a fat girl is a political statement, and I have to decide if I'm ready to deal with the hateful backlash that might come with walking out my front door and into the general public.

Today, I wore leggings, thank-you-very-much.