Sunday, December 23, 2007

We're Here!

Y'all! We're here!!! We just got to the house a couple of hours ago. Mum immediately made us a big pot of steaming tea, and some dosas made from red rice which we ate with some fresh coconut chutney. YUM. It already feels so good to eat my mum's cooking, pretty much the best food in the world.

Merry Christmas y'all! I am blessed to have all of you in my life. Best Christmas present ever.


Friday, December 21, 2007

Monkey See, Monkey Do.

My friend Joey alerted me to the monkey infestation in New Dehli. He told me the Deputy Mayor plummeted to his death while trying to get a bunch of monkeys off his balcony.

I had heard nothing about this. In fact, I thought he was lying. Then I looked at this story from NBC. You HAVE to read it!

Thankfully we'll be way south of Delhi so no fear. Although I cannot promise that I won't try to pet a monkey if I see it. ;)


Thursday, December 20, 2007

See ya!

Guys... I can't believe the Big Day is just around the corner. We leave for India on SATURDAY!! I have been planning this trip for an entire year. Feeling quite surreal at the mo'.

And then, to bring me back down to earth, there's that colossal load of laundry laughing at me in the corner. Sigh.

For some reason, Blogger has not allowed me to post photos for a few weeks. I blame the pirated wi-fi connection. Ha!

Anyway, so long guys! I hope each and every one of you have a blessed, joyful and delicious Christmas, and a rockin' New Year. Can't wait to see you in 2008! I'll try to post from India, but I probs won't have photos. Hmph. Otherwise, we're back on the 9th.


Friday, December 14, 2007

Bah Stomach Bug!

Hey guys!

I am recovering from a nasty bout of the stomach flu this week. I have never had it before... in fact, in the midst of my 7-hour (yes SEVEN) regurgitation battle on Monday night, I weakly typed my symptoms into WebMD to try to figure out what it was. At first, I thought it was food poisoning, by my trusty Amy's Low Fat Black Bean Chili (one of my favorites). But then I remembered that when I had been at CNN that day, I had overheard two of the ladies talking about their stomach flu episodes that weekend. So their germs must have latched onto my system somehow, and since my system was already compromised by the onset of the Christmas Sniffles... they went to town! I still can't think of eating the other can of Amy's chili though. It's hard to when you've seen it come UP the same way it went DOWN.

Oooh Lordy, I have never been so ill in my life (except once a long time ago when I was in India. I wonder if it was the same thing?). Over the course of about 3 days, I really didn't eat anything, which is an odd feeling for me. I kept feeling to see if my tummy was getting flatter -- the only upside to my malaise, i thought -- and alas, I don't seem much difference. :) I KNOW! Much more important things to worry about! My neighbour Amy, proved her "Best Ever" status again, because whilst Bren was at work, she grabbed me a big ol' bottle of Gatorade and a box of saltines, which were my best friends over the past couple of days.


All this whilst the dreaded landlord is doing a bunch of construction work on the house, in order to get it in line with code. Oh, the stories we could tell you. I mean, I was painted into the flat yesterday. Ughghghghhgghghghgh.

I am on the mend today though. I even managed to keep down a little bit of chicken last night, and a baked potato today. I am slowly introducing more complex food back to the mother ship aka my tummy. Slowly. In true fat kid fashion of course, I kinda rushed it today, eating a baked potato AND (gasp!) a banana. My tummy is currently in a slow ache, as if to tell me, take it easy greedy pig! So I am sipping some digestion tea now hoping that it'll help. One of the upsides is that when you haven't eaten in a few days, it's like hitting the "reset" button on your palate. The first saltine I ate was a wonder! I couldn't believe that I had overlooked their crispy, salty, comforting taste! I was actually completely satisfied after I had nibbled on a couple of 'em.

And don't get me started on that chicken. It was a store-bought rotisserie chicken -- I thought it was wonderful, rounding out my taste-buds with full poultry flavour. Bren thought it was mediocre. "But it's CHIPOTLE LIME FLAVOURED!" I cried.

"Yeah. Bad idea, I think," he said, shrugging, yet piling it into his mouth. (Bren can and will eat an entire rotisserie chicken for dinner.)

Interesting, huh?

Anyway, no photos to share tonight since I am recharging the camera batteries.

That's all for now. Going to drive around the neighborhood in search of great Christmas lights! Whee!


Monday, December 10, 2007

Sand and Sorrow update

Hey guys,

Did you have a chance to watch Sand and Sorrow this past week? Thanks to all of you who did or who spread the word... I really appreciate it, and better yet, you know that you did something positive. I have not heard much in the way of "buzz" about the film, which I know you guys want. But there have been a bunch of articles written leading up to the film's premiere:

- LA Times
- Variety did a cool Q&A with Paul, the director.
- The Boston Herald
- Newsday and USA Today did little blurbs too

This weekend, Paul was flown to Switzerland and France by the UN, who held two screenings of the documentary.

I just hope this galvanizes some action. Have you written to your congressman or senator yet?


Thursday, December 6, 2007

Why Helen Thomas is the Bomb

From Huffpost today:

"My Favorite Mistake: Helen Thomas Talks About The Mistakes She Could Never Make

"My Favorite Mistake" is a new biweekly series in which writer Seema Kalia interviews various luminaries about the one mistake that taught them the most.

We asked journalist Helen Thomas to be our first interview subject for this column so we could learn something about her professional past that was particularly memorable - something that might have left such a significant imprint that it informed how she did her work as a reporter from thereon.

She, being Helen Thomas, questioned the entire premise of the interview. Stating, in short, that as a political reporter, she simply isn't allowed to make mistakes:

Helen Thomas: I don't have any mistakes to tell you about.

Seema Kalia: You don't have any recollection of any time you didn't do something well?
No, not that I know of. I don't say I'm perfect, and I do say I've made mistakes, but nothing that's colossal.

The spirit of this interview is really to explore the role of mistake-making as part of the growth of people who are really successful at what they do.
No, no,'re looking for something else; you want people to flagellate themselves.

There are many people I'd like to see flagellated in Washington, but you are not among them.

Well, I can't think of any [mistakes] that would be earth-shaking. Everybody makes mistakes. I don't know any reporter that hasn't done some Monday morning quarter-backing and wondered if they could have done something better; should they have asked a different question? But one thing about our business -- one thing about journalism -- is if you make a mistake, you're finished. Your mistake is on the front page and you don't have a job the next day. That's the way I've always seen it, and that's how it happens. I think we pay a higher penalty for our mistake than anyone else because it's so glaring when we do.

Do you think the political figures would do better to admit mistakes sooner, like when they make them?

I think they know that. I think most politicians would definitely expose missteps in their past, put it on the table. They would be considered very courageous and they'd go on from there. [And] I think it eases the pain; it's out there so it isn't a great exposé. Then it's left to the judgment of people. And people are usually forgiving, if it isn't a monumental mistake.

Is the American public too forgiving of its public figures?

Not in my opinion. You can forgive, but you don't have to elect them. [Laughs.]

Well, election is probably the favorite form of forgiveness for a politician, isn't it?

I'm sure that would weigh in for a lot of them [laughs]. I wish we knew more about our leaders as they're going in [to office] rather than coming out. I think we should have known more about the President and so forth. You need to know more. Much more.

Well, whose mistake was that?

It's ours. It's our job to probe.

What would you say to a young reporter who, in their exuberance, published something that turns out to not be true?

If it isn't too earth-shaking, then I would assure them, "This is what you did wrong..." and give them a second chance. But I don't think you get another chance if you make a mistake involving a big story.

Do you think technology is changing that? That a good reporter will always find a venue because there are so many media outlets now?

No, but I do think it is kind of sad when everybody who owns a laptop thinks they're a journalist and doesn't understand the ethics. We do have to have some sense of what's right and wrong in this job. Of how far we can go. We don't make accusations without absolute proof. We're not prosecutors. We don't assume.

So if there's this amateur league of journalists out there, trying to do what you do...

It's dangerous.

What makes it dangerous? Isn't more information always better?

Not necessarily. Not if it isn't true. It could be out there and it could really muck up the whole picture. I'm not trying to suppress information; I'm just saying you have to be very careful.

My advice is simply try, as best you can, to only write the truth and try to check everything, and I think you just hope for the best. And, certainly, if someone gives you a story, I think you have to look a gift horse in the mouth. You have to find out why they're peddling it to you.

Always question why anybody does things. That's probably good advice for anybody."

Helen Thomas ROCKS.


Wednesday, December 5, 2007


Heard at the CNN bureau from a member of the Larry King staff. Apparently, after he finished interviewing Brad Pitt about his efforts to rebuild New Orleans, he said to someone (about Pitt), "That kid... he's going places."

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Interesting Stories today

A few interesting stories caught my eye today:

1) Honey treats coughs better than drugs! (via ABC)
New research shows that honey works even better than over-the-counter drugs to soothe coughs. Which is great because (1) honey is yummier than cough syrup, (2) it's cheaper and (3) it's all natural! Go honeybees! Those little creatures are smarter than they look.

2) One currency in the Middle East by 2010? (via Bloomberg)
Saudi, the UAE and 4 other states are planning on creating a "common market", which means (I think) that there would be something akin to an EU in the Middle East. Interesting huh? Forming a common market is a pre-requisite to creating a common currency for the region, according to the article. Imagine what that would mean for the (falling) dollar, especially with oil prices rising astronomically every few months??? And what would they call it?

3) The Golden Compass: To Boycott or not to boycott? (via Salon)
This is more of an open question to y'all. Will you go see "The Golden Compass"?

Should you boycott a film whose author is actively hostile (not just challenging) to your faith/your truth OR do you go watch it because you are not as close-minded as those Sudanese people who threatened to flog the British teacher who called the class teddybear Mohammed? Quite a quandry.

I wasn't going to see it anyway because it looked kinda crappy, and I'm sick of Nicole Kidman. But, upon reading about the backstory and allegory, I was intrigued. In the end, I think I'd rather spend my $10 on a movie I want to support (as opposed to witholding money in some kind of boycott), so I'm going to see "Bella".
Have you heard about this film? If not, do read the article I linked to in the LA Times. Sounds great, and hey, the lead actor is pretty easy on the eyes too. :)

That's where my head is at today. How are you all?

Bren's back tomorrow night. I am so f'in excited!


Saturday, December 1, 2007

Oh Joy!

Just when you thought I was being too serious... I am close as I'll ever be to doing a cartwheel. I found my favorite ice-cream flavor again! JOY!

It's Ben and Jerry's "Neopolitan Dynamite", an insane combination of "Cherry Garcia" and Chocolate Fudge Brownie icecreams, SIDE BY SIDE. I'm sure it used to have a different name, something more humble and less of-the-moment perhaps, but this precious creamy goodness kept me company many a night when I first graduated from college and I was lonely and overwhelmed. There were nights when all 960 calories and 52g of fat kept me fed, both physically and spiritually (yup the entire 1 pint). What can I say -- if you're a fat kid, or just someone with an insatiable sweet-tooth, we understand each other.

I have been in mourning for years, because I thought B&J had discontinued my sugary escape. And I must have just overlooked it at the supermarket, seduced into committing adultery with "Dublin Mudslide" and "Pistachio Pistachio". I am overcome with shame now that I realise ol' faithful was sitting in that same supermarket freezer, watching me as I cast nary a glance in her direction and reached for her second-rate sisters.

Today, when I returned to that same spot, after a fruitless hour-long search for a movie at the new "it" movie theater in LA, the Landmark, I was looking for a hug, for someone to keep me company on this cold night whilst Bren is away. Nothing sounded good, not the "Phish Food" or the "Everything But The...". I sighed in defeat, eyeing the frozen yoghurt as a consolation prize, something that would make my Weight Watchers meeting tomorrow morning just that little bit easier. Suddenly, she screamed out, "Look at me dammit!" and I finally thought to bend down, look beyond her corny new name, and recognize my old friend for who she was: a pint of cherry-vanilla-chocolate chip-chocolate brownie love.


At first, I confess, I dismissed the murder of Washington Redskins star Sean Taylor, as yet another black athlete who involved himself in something dangerous without thinking.

But, as I read more about this man, I read that he was trying to get back on track, to extricate himself from a life that offered nothing but trouble, to be a upstanding, moral example to his new daughter. Sean Taylor was trying to do everything right, and things STILL didn't work out for him or his family. I am so puzzled and somewhat discouraged by this because I have always believed that if I did the right thing whenever I could, took the correct path even if it was the path least taken, that I would be protected in some way from disaster. I mean, I know that is a simple way of putting things, but once you start getting any more complex than that, then I'm lost! When Will and Jed were here, Will was talking about how a theologian of some sort had analyzed all the disasters and milestones in our history, and decided that if God was a human, He would be a psychopath! He wasn't being blasphemous I don't think -- rather it's an attempt to show the vast chasm between our logic... and God's logic. I can't say that His logic is always appears kind, at least not in the short-term. But I suppose that is the test of faith, that in the long-term (and I'm talking eternal long-term), there is a rhyme and reason to everything, even the most heartbreaking and gut-wrenching tragedy.

So what got me thinking about this, you ask? The Washington Post's Michael Wilbon's column about this. If you're anything like me, with whatever latent prejudice I may have, this column might just tweak your thinking a bit.


Thursday, November 29, 2007

To Boba... or not to Boba

Hello everyone! Sorry about the silence on this end. How was your Thanksgiving? Ours was a blast; Talika's family is wonderfully warm and welcoming. It was great to meet all the various members of her family and figure out where she got her eyes and her cheeks and her smile! I love meeting people's parents, for that reason. I love trying to figure out which genes won out in the in vitro DNA battle.

We had a whirlwind week! Jed and Will were very gracious with their batty sister-in-law. We had boba tea practically every day; for those of you who have yet to be submitted to the McSequeira obsession, boba tea, also known as "bubble tea", is an iced milky tea with big black tapioca pearls at the bottom. The drinks come with an extra large straw so that you can suck them up and chew them. It's a party in your mouth!

You can pretty much separate the human race into two: those who enjoy the boba experience, and those who don't. And I get it -- the texture can be off-putting, if you don't enjoy slightly slimy, chewy balls (aka you're a weirdo). We LOVE it. And of course, in true McSequeira style, we are insanely picky about it. We ONLY get boba from one place: Volcano Tea on Sawtelle (off Olympic). Go ahead, roll your eyes. I know you're doing it!! We've been going to Volcano for at least 6 years!!! There's probably good boba in Monterey Park, which is a predominantly Asian neighborhood here... but it's too far away. And no other place does it like Volcano does. Even when I lived in New York, Mikael, Sally and I would go in search of good boba in Chinatown, only to be sorely disappointed.

Luckily, Will and Jed are similarly obsessed with boba, so whenever they're here, we go everyday. In fact, Jed usually gets two when we go. I confess that Bren and I haven't gotten boba in a while, because I worked out that each drink is worth *6* points!! AGH! That's like two small orders of french fries at McDonalds! So it was nice to indulge for once.

We also went to Michael's wedding, which was beautiful. I don't have any photos sadly, because Bren had the camera, which had run out of batteries by the time he got to the wedding. But we had a good time.

Well that's all for today. I'll try to think of something else interesting to post soon. In the meantime, I am so excited! The documentary airs ONE WEEK FROM TODAY!!!


Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Spread the Word

The documentary I co-produced "Sand and Sorrow", about the Darfur crisis, airs Thursday Dec 6th at 8p on HBO-- that's two weeks from this Thanksgiving. Please spread the word! Tell everyone you know! I would at least like people to TALK about it even if they don't watch it.

Also, if you want, check out this site. This group is working in conjunction with HBO to create house parties where folks gather, watch the doc and then talk about it. There's also a chance to chat live with a couple of the main characters in the film, over the internet.

I have a PDF of the actual movie poster, but I cannot convert it to a JPEG for some reason (which I have to do in order to post it up here on the Internet). If any of you can help me out with that one, let me know. I'd love for y'all to see it.

It is a bittersweet week in the Mc-Sequeira household. Bren's sweet sweet brother Jed is here for his annual Thanksgiving jousting match. Bren's other sweet sweet brother Will is on his way, so that the three of them can have a fraternal reunion; in past years, that has happened over the Christmas holiday but since we are going to India this year... they're doing it now. Also, at the end of this week, Michael (Bren's dad) is getting married. It's a FULL WEEK!

Sadly (or happily kinda), Bren booked a commercial that is shooting in Prague (YIPPEE!). Unfortunately, and this is the bitter part, they need him to leave today and return on Saturday. So that means he'll miss 90% of his brothers' visit and part, if not all, of his dad's wedding. He and I were both unbelievably bummed about it but you can't say no to this kinda opportunity. Thankfully, Talika offered her family up as a surrogate to us, so we'll be stuffing ourselves with the Jamaican-Persian contigent this year. Whee!

I'll post whatever photos Bren gets in Prague -- pray that he gets back safely and that he nails it! I also have a bunch of stellar ugly pics that Andy sent. I'll be posting those too so stay tuned. Until then, have a peaceful and loving Thanksgiving no matter what you are doing, and know that somewhere on the West Coast, there's someone with short curly black hair and a sometimes-doublechin who is very very thankful for you in her life.


Thursday, November 15, 2007


All you Los Angeles folks, tomorrow (Friday the 16th of November) is your last chance to witness Bren in his finest improv show yet. So far he's played the roaring head of a stallion, upon which a god of sorts is riding to victory... a fiance-cum-janitor Lothario that likes to flex his muscles before he knocks you out and takes blackmail-potential photos (see pic above)... and, well, truly I've forgotten the other characters, but trust me, I laughed a lot at him. He's funny. I mean, you KNOW he's funny.

The show is tomorrow as I mentioned, at the Hothouse (4934 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood, CA 91601) at 9pm. There's also a show at 8p if you want to get your money's worth -- a very affordable $10/ticket. Oh and if you like, it's BYOB.

Here's the google map for the spot.

Yes I know it's (eek!) in the Valley, but it really doesn't take that long to drive there. And the time flies by for all of you who still have a stereo in your car; ours was stolen a while ago, and so now I have to sing to myself. I think "This American Life" is on NPR at that hour, so you can even catch the best show on radio (aside from "Cartalk") while you're driving! Stop being such a lazybutt. You're so LA. Come have your humour tickled.


See you there!


Wednesday, November 14, 2007

OH yeah!

I found another doozy! I was going through my library and there it was -- it looked bad enough as a thumbnail but when I blew it up, I knew it was a keeper. May I present the "beauty" of shooting someone from below whilst that someone is doing their best turtle impression!

This is so empowering. Haahahahaaa!


Fat Pics Reponse...

My friend Sarah left such a great comment last night that I had to share it:

It's funny that you made this post because I have just recently begun to embrace those "ugly" pictures of myself.
My students have taken numerous pictures of me at various events, many of which I never see again, but some I hear about later. I particularly hear about how badly they came out.
I used to let these sorts of photos bother me, but have recently decided that bad pictures happen to everyone. No matter how you might look in everyday life, someone has immortalized you making the least flattering facial expression, sporting the outfit that makes you look enormous, or in lightning that makes your face reminiscient of something from Night of the Living Dead.
My bad ones generally include my nose looking really bizarre.
Maybe we should all collect those "bad photos" and rather than burning them, make a photo montage, or post them on a website and stare at them until we become unphased by them.
The fact of the matter is the more fluid you are, the more active and expressive, the less wonderbread and milk toast-boring you are, the more likely it is that you will be caught making a strange face in a photograph. It's only folks that practice their smile in front of the mirror and avoid their inner need for Lucille Ball and Lon Chaney moments that look the same in every pic, and who needs those people anyways.
You photograph beautifully, so I can't imagine you looking bad in any pic, extra weight or not...but then again you're not exactly whitebread, so BRING ON THE BAD PHOTOS!

I think this is a great idea; if you have some ugly photos of yourself, you can send them to me and I'll post them alongside any ugly ones I have of myself. Then we can laugh at each other knowing that how beautiful we really are, despite bad lighting, angles and outfits.

Here's the worst one I have right now. You can see my problem -- it's really not ugly enough dammit! Ashley laughed her butt off when I sent her this one. So please, help a sistah out and send a bad photo. At least in this one though, you can see my shirt straining and my chubby round face. I just want to pinch those cheeks!


p.s. stef: good luck to you too. And calories don't count when you're out having fun dontcha know?!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Fat pics?

Hey y'all... any of you have a photo of me from the past few years, which is quite unflattering? I only got a camera in the past year, coincidentally (!) around the same time started losing weight so I don't have any photos of me when I was heavier. If you have one you think qualifies, please email it to me! I am trying to find a good "before" photo to give to my personal trainer friend Ashley, who really jumpstarted me this year... she wants to put it on her website. Now's the time! I won't be offended I promise! Send me that one photo that you looked at and thought, ooooh lordy, not going to share that one with her!! Bad angles, sad face, tummy rolls... the whole nine.



Monday, November 12, 2007

Hothouse on LAist

I wrote about the Hothouse on LAist! Take a look.

Oh, the hothouse is where Bren performs and has taken classes and generally rocks the house everytime he takes the stage. :)


Friday, November 9, 2007

My Favorite Things: Balsamic Vinegar Glaze

This is actually Kuv's idea. When she came to visit, she was intrigued by the thing I'm going to write about, and was so taken by it that she said, "Aarth, you should write about all these cool things you find at the supermarket!".

So here we go. Thanks Kuv! I love this idea. Makes me seem so smart. :)

It might be a bit tricky to find, but I think it's worth it: balsamic vinegar glaze.

I too was crazy for balsamic vinegar when the entire country seemed to be dousing everything from caprese sandwiches to ice-cream in it. But eventually, I realised... I don't really like it. It took Patte voicing her distaste for it -- and suddenly, I thought, hey me too! Or at least, I'm (typically) snobby about it. Give me a little of that aged-for-25-years stuff, and I'm ecstatic. But that really watery, acetic kind? BLECH!

So here is a great compromise for me. It has the syrupy texture and sweetness of the aged kind, without the $30 (or more!) price tag. I found it at Whole Foods, although Trader Joes used to carry their version (since discontinued sadly). You can probably make your own reduction, by boiling down a bottle of the regular stuff, but I tried that once and almost fainted from the vinegary fumes.

It's incredibly versatile. I drizzle a bit over salads which I've dressed with some lemon juice. You don't even need the olive oil. I've put it over rotisserie chicken that I bought at the store, to jazz it up a bit. Or yes, over ice-cream. It's so yummy, especially with some fruit. Plus, it comes in a SQUEEZY BOTTLE so you can write messages or make snooty modern-art type of designs all over your food. What's better than that?


Sigh. Ho hum.

I have been a bit lacking in the inspiration department guys, sorry! I open this page up nearly every day and stare at it and then out of the window hoping for something interesting that I can write about. Sigh.

I will say that I am enjoying the cooler weather and the related bounty at the farmer's market! This week I hit up the one in our neighborhood (as opposed to the gargantuan one in Santa Monica that I took pics of previously). I found some unbelievable mushrooms -- so beautiful that I didn't even want to cut them up or eat them.

Well, I didn't want to for all of about 5 seconds before I imagined what they would taste like. Hmm, I didn't take photos of this recipe, but I am going to post it anyway because it is one of Bren's FAVORITES (I've never seen him eat anything resembling a vegetable so quickly before). You can use whatever mushrooms you like although I'm not sure the white button ones would work as well. If you see a good bunch at the farmer's market, grab 'em! I served this over little round of polenta -- the loaf kind, that I allowed to crust up a little in the pan.

Roasted mushroom yummy

1 or 2 pounds of wild mushrooms (oysters, chanterelles, shitakes, crimini etc)
3 cloves garlic, sliced thinly
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
About a teaspoon of dried thyme or the fresh stuff
Salt and pepper
2 shallots of 1 leek, cleaned and diced finely
1/4 cup brandy
1/3 cup half and half
Whatever fresh herbs you want

1) Preheat oven to about 375 degrees fahrenheit
2) Using a pastry brush, clean the mushrooms, and snap off tough stems. Then slice in 1/4" wide pieces.
3) Toss mushrooms with garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper.
4) Spread them on a half-sheet pan or cookie sheet, and throw in to the oven for 15-20mins until slightly golden brown and juicy
5) Meanwhile, heat some oil or butter in a skillet. Once it's warm, add leeks/shallots and sweat until tender. If you're using leeks, let them cook until they take on a bit of color -- I think they taste better that way.
6) OFF HEAT, add the brandy and flambee until the alcohol has burnt out
7) Put it back on the heat, and add the half and half. You can also add a squeeze of lemon juice for some tartness if you like.
8) Let it cook a few minutes so the flavors marry.
9) Season with salt and pepper.
10) Pour over the mushrooms, throw it all back in the oven and roast for another 5 minutes or so.
11) Spoon over polenta rounds or pieces of toast or just eat it by itself. It's goooooood!

I cannot take credit for this recipe -- I adapted it from one I learned at cooking school.


Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Stef's Wedding

I realised that I hadn't posted photos yet from Stef's wedding. So without further ado...

Stef foster and I have a special connection. Not only did we live in the same dorm in college, and then in the same room at our apartment in Evanston; we also share the same birthday (alongside such luminaries as “Bubba” Clinton and Lil’ Romeo). So there was no way that I was missing her wedding.

Stef married her beau, Danny, a sweet, generous and goofy man who is a mean swing dancer. They wed at a converted barn in Gray’s Lake, just outside of Chicago (out by Gurnee for those of you who remember trekking to the outlet mall).

Thanks Andy for this picture! Stef was bridely beautiful, in a simple white dress, and a gorgeous, chunky necklace she got in Ghana, made from an array of beautiful raw stones. She also, of course, wore a damn fine pair of cowboy boots under her gown. Yee-haw!

I started bawling once Danny started reading his vows, which he had written not so many nights before. In fact, it was such a touching affair that Stef, Danny, the officiant, her “maid of AWESOME!” Sarah and even Stef’s mum all seemed to share the same piece of tissue to wipe away their tears. Sarah and the best man sang a tender acoustic version of “Such Great Heights” by the Postal Service.

Stef and her dad built these simple, rustic, elegant center pieces for each table – so beautiful. Someone told me she had sliced her hand open making them!

We had a ton of fun, especially since we attended the wedding with Andy and his girlfriend, Lacey (who is our LA friend Joanna’s sister… it’s so weird to think that he would never have met her unless we knew Joanna, whose family has a tradition of attending the Austin City Limits festival every year, which is where Andy and Lacey met. Ah the incestuous webs we weave!!).

Andy looked fiiiiiiine in his pin-striped suit. This is by far my most favorite photo of the night. Note the smoke coming out of his teeth and the plate o' cake.


Friday, October 26, 2007

Respite for a Day

Got home yesterday evening. Realised that I had been up essentially since 11pm the night before! Dog tired. Can't imagine how people working along the firelines are feeling. Going back tomorrow, although not to San Diego -- going to the Santiago Fire near Irvine, CA (in Orange County for those of you familiar) where the arson investigation is big news. Thought I'd post a few photos I took from this trip.

Took this one at 2a when our liveshots started. This is in Rancho Bernardo where a LOT of homes were ruined. You can see the big particles of dust and ash in the air.

Once the sun came up, we could see the destruction clearly. The sky was grey because there was so much smoke in the air...

And the ground was charred.

Me in the satellite truck. Note the tired look!

The next day, we were at a local highschool which is serving as a shelter for evacuees of the Harris Fire. A lot of these people live in more modest homes, or in trailers... so losing their homes is much more devastating than other families who can afford to rebuild their lives. In this photo, Kara (the reporter I was working with, who is awesome) was about to interview Tony Clark, an evacuee who lived in his home with his 4-month pregnant wife Brandy, his 16-month old daughter, Ivy and his mother who is quite sick. He and his wife told me they were reformed drug addicts, and their house symbolized their effort to get their lives back on track. He was pretty upbeat when we met him, very sweet. The next day, he looked forlorn -- he had found out that he had lost his house.

The sun was reddish-pink, glaring through the smoky haze.

I'll take more photos when I'm out at the Santiago Fire. Thankyou so much for all the thoughtful comments!


Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Burn Baby Burn

Hey y'all, I'm in San Diego covering the wildfires for CNN. Don't worry, we are all ok -- thankyou for the words of comfort and offers to come stay with y'all! LA proper is alright now -- that's where Bren is. The real danger and devastation is here in San Diego. As I write, we are parked on a street in a neighborhood where 300 homes have burned to the ground. Burned to the point of charred ironing boards, singed shards of tile and wood, and dust... lots and lots of dust and ashes that fly directly into your eyes. Our lips are chapped, our skin is coated in soot, and it smells like a fireplace. Funny -- one of my favorite smells is the scent of burning wood; I've always found it comforting. Out here, it's anything but. The smell is overwhelming, sharp... It's digging its claws into my nostrils, and my hair and my skin. It's really quite eerie and ominous. I stopped at the Target and the Walgreens near the hotel last night to grab a mask to wear over my mouth -- they were all sold out. I am wishing I'd gotten something so badly.

No big flames where we are, although it's early. There are lots of other areas that are burning violently, which we might visit later today, but for now, it's eerily quiet and calm. There's noone here except for media and emergency vehicles. And it's kinda weird to be walking around the remains of people's homes and intimate memories. I just hope it's over soon.

I'm taking photos, but I forgot to bring the cable, so I'll post them when I get back.


Friday, October 19, 2007

Coming Soon!

Sorry y'all... I have been running around doing stuff since we got back from Chicago, and there's so many photos I want to post! I will post it as soon as possible. Bren is in an improv show tonight at the Hothouse, so if you're around, come on down! It's at 8p.


Monday, October 15, 2007

Happy Birthday Mandi!

Dear sweet Mandi,

Happy Birthday! You are no longer two years younger than me. Welcome to your 28th year! I am so grateful that you were put on this earth, and that you are one of my best friends ever. Here are 5 things that I love about you:

1) That you are a huggy-buggy
2) That even though you act tough sometimes, you are a goofy mushy-mush underneath
3) That even though you were tipsy, you biked all the way from your house to see me at the pizza place
4) That you gave me free tickets to your gun show :)
5) That you always tell people how you feel, even if that person has hurt your feelings (I'm sorry.)
6) That you do things like call me up just to say I'm hot. (No, YOU'RE HOT!)
7) That you do funny jigs so that I'll look at your black and white stripey socks when I get up to go to the bathroom (see exhibit B)

8) That even though you are far away, whenever we talk or see each other, you make it so it's as if no distance or time has passed at all.

I know, that's eight things, but that is the wonder of Mandi -- once you start counting the ways you love her, you'll have a hard time stopping.

Happy Birthday!! I hope you had a great day! (Sorry it's a day late; Blogger was acting up yesterday).


Thursday, October 11, 2007

The Ugly Duckling

Bren brought home one of the ugliest cacti I have ever seen a few months ago. It had clearly been mistreated, which is saying a lot for a cactus, the cockroach of the plant world in terms of durability. The soil was dry, the stalks were cracked and almost grey, there was this curious bit of fluff on top of it… it was just crying out for a little love. Unfortunately for this cactus, I knew that even with a little love, it would probably look only slightly less ugly than it looked when Bren heaved it up the stairs. I rolled my eyes, sighed in my smug little know-it-all way and gave Bren a withering look.

But Bren loves an underdog. I do too, but usually when the underdog looks like Jake Gyllenhaal on a bad day or something. This thing was UGLY, and was destined for only more ugliness, or so I thought. I mean, this is what the bottom of it looks like:

So I tolerated it, watered it without looking at it, and every now and then, when I felt particularly charitable, I whispered a few kind words at it (AFTER I’d talked to the other, prettier plants of course).

My, did that ugly cactus put me to shame! I went out on the porch today and nearly fell over – I was stunned by the beauty of the two e-n-o-r-m-o-u-s white flowers that had bashed their way out of the top of the cactus! Each flower is as big as my hand, and they are so triumphant! Proud, impossibly white and smooth, in sharp contrast to the prickly and for some reason hairy green arms that hold them up… there is something so feminine about them, as if the cactus suddenly sprouted two buxom breasts and decided to bare them in the breeze that sweeps across our porch. I was so intoxicated by them that I took about 30 pictures of them! Here’s the best of the lot for you. Long live the ugly duckling! I’ve learned my lesson!


Having a Bad Day?

You’re not alone. Apparently, everyone on Earth probably did! Isn't that comforting, kinda? I mean seriously. I'm not being sarcastic. Isn't that a somewhat comforting thought when you're having a bad day?

Mercury went into retrograde today, which coincided with some other celestial confrontation between Saturn and something else I can’t remember. I am relating this information from the yoga teacher at the studio today, who seemed quite affected by what’s happening in the heavens. What it means is, apparently, that communicating with people is going to be difficult today, your computer may not want to cooperate, and so on and so forth.

I never know whether to believe this stuff or not, but I have been feeling very maladjusted the past few days: the headache of last week continued its engagement, bringing some extra body aches with it yesterday. Today was the first day I woke up headache-free (it did appear later in the day), but I was very low-energy, not budging when Diary of a Mad Black Woman came on TV. I watched the whole thing. :) It’s not quite as bad as I thought it would be – I even cried during one scene! AAAGHGHGH!

Anyway, so yeah, I was lacking energy today, and so was Bren. And I remember that Mum was always affected by the full moon – I seem to remember it gave her a headache, and I think it had something to do with the moon’s magnetic pull, which also is responsible for the tides. Is that true or did I make that up in my dreams??? Haahahahaa.

So yeah, if you weren’t feeling completely happy and energetic and joyful today, and you were having a hard time communicating with people, or your computer seemed to be running on molasses… it could be that pesky Mercury at work again.

On the upside, we did spend part of the morning on a joyful note. Fabrice was in LA, so we had breakfast with him this morning. Fabrice was one of the first friends I made at uni; he lived in the same dorm as me and because he’s gorgeous, I clearly had to make sure I knew who he was when I saw him! Haaaaahahaha. Sweet sweet Fabrice is as beautiful and kind-hearted as always. He also still laughs as loudly at Bren’s jokes as he used to, which I know makes Bren happy. It was so good to see him, before he went back to New Jersey!

We are off to Chicago tomorrow for Stef Foster’s wedding, which I am so excited about! I’ll post pics when I get back. Until then, don’t get too frustrated if things aren’t going your way right now. Mercury apparently starts behaving itself… in NOVEMBER!!!!!


Thursday's Hero!

Thursday's Hero is Keven! He made a whopping 3 (or was it 4?) comments on my blog, IN ONE DAY! YIPPEEE! GO KEVEN GO!



Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Looking Kool at Krav

Bren has been taking Krav Maga, for the past 5 months or so. Not only has he shed a ton of weight and got all muscley (whee!) as a result, but he's walking with more confidence in himself, and an overall sense of joy that comes from letting out all your latent Irish-brawling tendencies first thing in the morning with other similarly-challenged brutish men.

Believe it or not, Bren wakes up at 6a so that he can make the 7a class... an enormous accomplishment in itself since Bren is unbelievably opposed to the hours on the clock between 3a and 11a. :) But I get it; he's shown me a few moves, and I have to say that I get a little rush out of it, because the moves helped me manipulate (and HURT) a guy as big as Bren, with only a small amount of effort. whooppeee!

Anyway, a long time ago, when Bren started growing his hair out, he started collecting bandanas to hold his hair back when we went to the gym. That meant he was dipping into my stash, and that just wouldn't do (!) so when I was at Target, I picked up some uber-cheap ones, less than $1 a piece, that caught my eye. They've been added to Bren's Bandana Rotation ever since.

Today, Bren was wearing one of them, and his partner finally said or probably grunted, "What the heck are you wearing on your head?"

It was this one.

They are the stupidest bandanas ever.

And yet, we both love them.

I mean, what's not to love? First off, the bright colors mean you'll never be lost in a crowd -- a HUGE fear of mine.

Second, the odd cartoon characters lure you over with their lashes, only to kinda freak you out with their expressions.

And last, but by no means least, there are the audacious but absurd statements stamped across them like, "I have no excuses for my behaviour!" or "Not my problem!" with the grump-puss looking frog. You can't help but be puzzled by them, and yet I challenge you not to laugh when you see Bren throwing a fierce flying knee with one of these beauties wrapped around his sweat-drenched head.

And so they remain a part of the McSequeira closet. I thought I would share a few pics of the other ones. Enjoy!

Sunday, October 7, 2007


Have you guys (in the States) watched "Pushing Daisies"? It's a new show on ABC on Wednesday nights that I can't stop talking about. It is truly the first time, in a loooong time, that I have been impressed by a network TV show. The show (about a man who has the ability to bring dead people back to life with one touch of his finger, but should he touch those same people again, will kill them) is fresh, cinematically-shot, very reminiscent of "Amelie" and Tim Burton stuff... and most importantly, is d e l i c i o u s l y written.

In fact, I pitched the show to my friend Stella (a vocabulary geek, pictured here next to fellow vocab geek, Brendan McNamara) based on this one phrase the female lead utters. The phrase made Bren laugh, and then fist pump in the air. Fist pump. Over a phrase. Said on TV. Ah vocabulary geeks... we are a funny bunch.

The phrase was: "I'm hoist by own petard!". Now, I told Stella it was "batard". But after she couldn't find it in her dictionary and emailed me, I re-consulted the King VG (vocab-geek), Bren, and he said it was with a 'p'. So that was my error.

The phrase means, for those who don't know (as I didn't), that you have unwittingly created your own undoing.

Bren and I just had a discussion over the "unwitting" part -- he doesn't think that's necessary, and I think it is, but guess who has the blog, big man?! Huh? Huh??? YEAH!


Oh. Um, sorry. Where were we?

Oh yeah, so the phrase means to be harmed UNWITTINGLY by something that was meant to harm someone else.

A petard was a popular weapon used in Elizabethan times, a box full of dynamite that was usually hurled over a castle wall before it exploded and made a huge hole in the wall. It was the precursor to the bomb. Soldiers would build a trench so they could take cover I imagine, and then hoist the petard up and over the castle wall. Hence the "hoisting" part. So essentially, the phrase means, "I have been blown up by my own bomb, which I had meant for someone else." Hence the "unwittingly" part of my definition, which of course now Bren says he actually agreed with but that I misunderstood him. Unwittingly.


Incidentally, petard derives from the french "peter" which means... to fart.


Wednesday, October 3, 2007


Four years of college and this is all I can come up with to describe how I feel. I am not feeling blue anymore thank goodness (and thanks to you all who sent me words of encouragement!). Now, I just feel big and lumbering, and I've had a headache for two days which just won't go away despite how much caffiene I drink or how many aspirin I've popped. So I am just dealing with it -- after all, this is clearly not a big deal. But it is annoying!

Over the weekend, Bren and I went to the wedding of one of our friends, Shelly. It was a thoroughly modern affair, with both the ceremony and the reception held at an art gallery. The ceremony proceeded as follows: The bridge and groom entered the room. The officiant asked the bride if she took the groom as her lawfully-wedding husband. She said yes. The officiant asked the groom if he took the bride as his lawfully-wedded wife. He said he did. And then they were declared husband and wife. I think the whole ceremony took less time than it took for me to type it out! haaha! Anyway, after that we mingled with the guests, meeting some very cool people. Oh and did I mention the bride wore a bright green halter-neck dress? And her bouquet was moulded into a cuff that she wore on her arm super-hero style? She looked feeeeeirce!

Bren and I looked pretty good ourselves. Here's a good photo of Bren trying to squeeze into a crate he found, like the man-doll that he is. :)

And here's one of him looking sweet and lovely. Of course, we didn't think to take a photo of me of course. Sigh. And I looked good!!!

Well that's all. I'll try to be more inspired tomorrow. I've been reading even more Congo stuff. Oh before I go, gotta mention Jimmy Carter standing up to the soldiers in Darfur -- go peanut farmer go!!

Friday, September 28, 2007

Remember Freekah?

I finally posted about freekah (the grain dish I served Kuv when she came to visit), on LAist. Take a look!

I'm PMS'ing in a kinda unusual way. Well first of all, it's odd that I'm PMSing at all, since that doesn't happen usually; the acupunture seems to be working thank goodness. Last time, my mood didn't really change all that much, but I was in a lot of pain. This time around, I am blue as the ocean. Not about anything in particular, although it certainly serves as a good base to think about sad things in my life. Poor Bren -- he seems a little taken aback by the depths of the blue, and the way I can spike from blue to cuddly back to blue again. :) Hopefully it'll be over soon. Until then, I am going to drown myself in something naughty and chocolatey.


Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Taking refuge in the kitchen

After yesterday's preachy/rambling/maybe naive post, I was feeling a little sheepish about posting today. But then I received a wonderful, cheery link in my email so I thought I would share it with y'all!

I remember watching Paula Deen talk about how when she was struggling with agoraphobia, she always took refuge in her kitchen. She could forget everything else that was bothering her, and instead focus on creating something delicious and comforting. And that's how she became the Food Network star that she is!

I think Julia Child probably felt the same way. And if you've ever wondered what her kitchen looked like, well, your wish is granted. When she moved from Massachusetts to California, the Smithsonian asked her if they could keep her kitchen. She said, yes (who wouldn't?!), and the Smithsonian painstakingly broke it down piece by piece, and rebuilt the kitchen in their museum. They kept everything as it was, every pot and pan in their place on the wall, and they even kept her "junk drawer" and the rails installed in the ceiling where the TV crew hung their lights. My favorite part is her longette hanging by the telephone and bills, so that she could read fine print.

I'm nowhere near DC, or else I'd rush out to see it. But you can take a virtual tour, complete with little bits of trivia and a short recording of her owl-like voice here.

Isn't it cute? And not fancy either, although I am green with envy at the sheer size of the thing. Bren and I made pizza from scratch over the weekend, complete with a peel and a pizza stone, and we definitely could have used the space. I must say however that we have gotten very good at maneuvering around each other, employing the professional kitchen yell, "behind!" when we need to cross behind the other one (Bren usually combines the yell with a firm squeeze of my booty though, which definitely did not happen to me when I was working at Lucques! Heeeehehee!). Bren's pizza was the yummier of the two we made: it had dried coconut, fried plantains and some carne asade on it. And cheese of course. I made a classic margherita. As cheap as it is to order pizza, it really is even cheaper to make it! We used the recipe from the Best Recipe cookbook.

Of course, dumb me, I didn't think to take a photo of it. But here's a photo of the two of us at the Austin City Limits Festival, day two, waiting for My Morning Jacket to play.

Yup, Bren is wearing sequins in his hair, a Superman cape, and a kilt. How do you compete against that?!


Tuesday, September 25, 2007


I thought I had heard the worst humanity is capable of when I researched Darfur.

Then I started reading about the Congo (the DRC).

I confess that I was so immersed in reading everything I could about darfur, that I ignored the congo, except for a cnn piece about a small hospital where women, survivors, sang to try to comfort their souls. But I had no idea what kind of nightmares their souls had been through.

I urge you to read Eve Ensler's article in Glamour. you can find it here. Seriously. Take 10 minutes. Read it.

The atrocities committed against women in the Congo defy language. These women are the battlefield upon which the Congo's civil war is being played out. In the Congo, like in Darfur, these women are not only raped, but raped in front of their children and their husbands. They're raped by multiple men simultaneously, their insides mutilated by being gang raped and raped with guns or sticks, or having a rifle stuck up into their vaginas and discharged. Pregnant women who try to escape while in labor will run for days with a dead baby in their womb. The trauma is catastrophic. Those who survive don't know how to go on with their lives. All this before the question of AIDS enters the picture. Ensler called it "femicide". And it's been going on since 1996. 1996!

I trembled with rage and sadness and rage again as I read this article. It is hard to understand the kinds of devilish things human beings are able to do -- how they turn off their conscience, our sort of "on-star" guide to what is right and what is wrong, and not only choose to do something wrong, but choose to do something so horrifically and unmistakably wrong. I believe in God, a just and compassionate God, and yet, reading things like this make my soul whisper, "why?". The doctor in the article said something I love about how when he sees someone who is hungry or in pain, he can't just quote a Bible verse and tell them to run along -- he has to pair that with an ACTION. But since I am here, in my living room, unable to do much in the way of action, I did find myself turning to the Bible, flipping it open and letting it rest where it may... and this is what it said:
2 Corinthians 4:18
"...we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal."

Not sure that would bring much comfort to those women, although who knows. And I don't include that verse as a reason to let your conscience off the hook, like, "well that stuff doesn't matter, because only eternity matters". It matters. We have to do whatever we can to stop things like this happening when we hear about it; I mean, that's common sense. I don't know. I'm rambling. I'm troubled. I can't get these stories out of my head, or my heart or my tummy. It's hard to come to terms with the fact that these things happen, ARE happening even as I write and as you read. It's hard not to resort to platitudes. It's hard not to get angry and just give up on the world. I've said it before and I'll say it again: PEOPLE SUCK! But I know that doctor is right -- action is the best answer. I'm going to try to find out which NGOs are best-committed to the Congo problem, and I'll post them when I find them. I think you can donate directly to the hospital in the Congo, through Ensler's vday project. I hope you forgive my grandiose tone. I'm just utterly flabbergasted by what I read and I'm attempting to understand it.

Until then, I'll leave you on a lighter note. A cat appeared on the fence today. She looked like she too had been through hell -- her fur was mangled and thin, her frame tiny and protective, her eyes darting and suspicious, but the most beautiful jade green. She didn't run when she saw me, and even allowed me to put a small tub of water in front of her. But with one sniff, she was offended, and darted away. I guess I should have served filtered water. Maybe some Fiji. I considered opening a can of tuna for her, but I didn't know if that was just one of those things that only cartoon cats (Tom and Jerry!) like to eat. I hope she comes back! I was able to snap a pic of her before she ran.

I'll be in a better mood tomorrow.


Monday, September 24, 2007

music and friends

y'all, i have been very bad about not writing in the past few weeks. but i have a lot of great excuses.

first we went to austin, for the austin city limits festival, a yearly tradition for the past four years. the festival always falls around our anniversary (in fact, the first year, it actually fell on our very first wedding anniversary!), so it's a bit of a celebration for us too.

then, on the way to the austin airport, cnn called and asked me to go vegas the next day, to help them cover the OJ Simpson arraignment. which i had to say yes to of course!

so the next day, i jumped in a cab, went back to the LA airport (where i had been not 12 hours prior), and flew to vegas. went to bed around 9p, woke up at 1a the next day, produced liveshots at the OJ circus until about 10am, had some lunch and then jumped back on a plane to LA.

however, on the way to the vegas airport, sweet cnn called again, and asked whether i wanted to produce a guest liveshot in claremont, ca (about an hour to two hours away depending on traffic), the next morning at 3am. i was kinda delirious at that point, said yes, got on the plane, got home, had some dinner and went to bed. woke up at 1am and hit the road.

so yeah - busy! blessedly so, but busy nonetheless.

i'll post about OJ tomorrow. For today, a little taste of Austin. We saw more than 10 bands, including:
- Bjork (excellent light show and wins the "what the heck does that gizmo do?" award. Also, her speaker CAUGHT ON FIRE. Oh, and of course, best stage makeup. We forgot our camera that day though, ugh!)

- MIA (my favorite show I think, despite the fact that all the South Asians at ACL came to watch this show. Ugh, I HATE being a stereotype. That aside, MIA tore it up! At the end, she asked the audience to rush the stage, much to the security guard's chagrin. She seemed especially aggro because she had appeared on David Letterman the previous night, and the show had asked her to take the gunshot sound effects out of her song. Galangalangalang!)

- Arcade Fire (energetic, seemed to be having fun themselves, encouraged an entire crowd of thousands to wail at the top of their voices)

- My Morning Jacket (my vote for "best show" although to understand why you'll have to see photos)

- Heartless Bastards, Andrew Bird, Common, Bloc Party, Ghostland Observatory, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, St. Vincent, Blonde Redhead, Spoon, and of course Bob Dylan who sounded like he'sd taking a page from Tom Waits' book these days; so gravelly. I also think it's interesting that there were no close-ups on his face on the jumbotron. Hmmm, methinks someone's face has seen a knife recently.

UGH! Blogger won't let me post photos at the mo' so i'll post them tomorrow. Glad to be back my friends!


Friday, September 14, 2007


we're in austin for the austin city limits festival, so i won't be writing for a few days. but i'll post more when we get back on monday. i'm sad that three of the acts that i wanted to see cancelled: the white stripes, amy winehouse and rodrigo y gabriella. but i'm sure it'll be fun.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Stressed Out Morning

I am having a difficult morning.

First, I am jolted from my freshly-snooz-button'd slumber by a rapping on the door at 8am, and it's a guy, who has been sent over by the landlord, to fix the water damage in our bathroom. It's nice (and of course, required) that she take care of it, but, at the time, I was appalled at the guy showing up unannounced... I later checked my voicemail and saw that she had left me a message, so... whatever.

Then, I walk into the bathroom and shriek because there's a cockroach in there (we NEVER have cockroaches) and it's being eaten alive by a swarm of those damned ants. It's still there. I am so disgusted by it I don't want to deal with it.

We head out the door to get a quick breakfast and drop Bren off at work. As I am about to return, my neighbour calls and says the exterminator, whose arrival I was even more keen on given this morning's adventure, had come and gone, and since I had left food out in the apartment, couldn't really spray the place. Which leaves me back at my apartment with a bathroom in disarray, a dead cockroach (and also now, dead ants since he sprayed the bathtub), other ants that may still roam freely in unpoisoned bliss, and Bren's as yet unpacked Burning Man stuff everywhere. Oh and technically, I'm not even supposed to be in the house because the spray is a bit toxic, but I have to wait here for the bathroom guys to return (who left because they didn't want to get similarly poisoned by the ant spray) so I can let them in to finish the job.

I think it's time for a latte.


Thursday, September 6, 2007

Celebrate Yourself!

There's a website where you can find out what else the country should be celebrating on your birthday in addition to the anniversary of your leaving the womb.

Here's what I found out:
Me: Potato Day
Bren: Rubber Eraser Day (WHAT?!)

Who knew that the lowly potato and I were cosmically aligned? Next time someone calls me a couch potato, I will glow with pride and say, YES I AM! I will eat fries like a champion, bathe in mashed potatoes, sleep on a bed of tater tots! Does that make me a cannibal?

And who knew how compatible a potato and a rubber eraser are?

Go find out what your day is and tell me what it is!!


Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Labour Day Weekend

Thanks for the sweet emails and comments regarding Patte. As my mum said, "she is a tough cookie!" and I think she's planning on going back to the clinic some time this week.

Anyway, this weekend, Kuv and her boyfriend Rich came to visit. I haven't seen Kuv since Thanksgiving last year, so it was right about time for a reconnection. In fact, I had originally planned on going to Phoenix this weekend since Bren was away, and he's allergic to animals (Kuv has two)... only to have Kuv email me and say that she was going to be in LA this weekend!

It was also my first opportunity to meet Kuv's boyfriend Rich. I was charged with representing the rest of the family in analyzing his suitability as a mate for the middle sister... and he passed! Poor guy probably had no idea how I was sizing him up. Heehee. But since we have no older brothers to do that gig, it falls to me. The first night, we had Indian food at a restaurant, which was fine, but definitely not as good as I can make it (cue snooty nose in the air).

Then they came over the next day, and I made dinner. They were both pretty pooped from doing so much during the day, the polar opposite of my day, so unfortunately we didn't get to hang out as long as I'd have liked. Ah well, I suppose that means I have to get my arse to Phoenix. (Um, I haven't visited her in Phoenix ONCE! Bad me!) It was a good visit though, always good to see her and talk about the weird Sequeira characteristics; when they came over to the house, I was on my hands and knees scrubbing the floor with a scrubby pad. Yup. Swiffers aren't good enough!!!

What else. OH! Bren's back! He has been up since 3am Monday... and he got home today (Tuesday) at about 4p. Yup. He's been up more than 36 hours. Oooh and it took all my strength not to say anything about how bad he smelled, because poor thing, it's been so hot, and it was such a tiring drive back... but ooh lord, he smelled bad!! Like, down on the farm bad. His eyes were glazed over, and he only spoke in monosyllables. I think I've been that tired once in my life, and it is horrible. Thankfully, he is showered and in bed now. Earlier, I went out to drop one of his friends off, and when I returned I found him passed out on the couch in just a towel, with some steak heating up in the toaster oven. I don't know how long the steak had been in there, but he had thought he would be able to keep his eyes open for the 5 minutes it would have taken... how wrong he was! Luckily, nothing was on fire. He is dead to the world now, so I haven't heard anything about Burning Man yet, except that it was awesome. I'm sure I will have my ear chewed off tomorrow.

Ain't he cute?

all text and photographs on aartilla the fun © 2005-2009 Aarti Sequeira unless otherwise indicated. All rights reserved.