Saturday, September 26, 2009

Roasted Vegetables

Once in a while I like to post recipes that I think are winners. Here is one that I got from Rachel Ray and I love it! Mine is not an exact recipe because I didn't write down what she was doing and added onion, cause who doesn't love roasted onions? (seriously, just try it. Roasted onions are awesome)

Tomatoes (quartered if normal tomatoes, left whole if cherry tomatoes)
Green beans (I use frozen because they're available year-round)
Red onion (quartered or eighth-ed - is that even a word?)
herbs de provence
olive oil

Toss vegetables carefully with olive oil and layer in a baking dish
Sprinkle salt, pepper and herbs de provence to taste
Bake at 450F for 45 minutes or until cherry tomatoes burst

*Culinary note: some herb mixes also add salt! Read the ingredients list or taste test before adding more salt to the dish

Address labels

Ok, so I know that some of the places that have my mailing address sell it to other organizations. I'm not a huge fan of junk mail, but since I moved to DC I've filed for changes of address. Why? I can't resist those adorable address labels they send!

I just got my first set and they're cute fall labels with pumpkins and everything...I'm actually looking forward to my next credit card bill so I can use them.

I also got some free greeting cards with matching stickers. So watch out! If you send me something, you might get a kitschy thank you card in return.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Emergency Response

Last week, right as I was settling down to do some graduate work and my roommate was comfy on the couch watching football, we hear a "cressshh" outside...and the power goes out. Being the experienced Californians we are (fires, floods, storms, earthquakes, rolling blackouts and economic crises), we responded with amazing speed.

I pulled out my handy dandy mini maglite and we went around unplugging all the electronics and shutting all the windows. It was totally fine until my roommate looked out the window and said, "Oh my god, there's someone standing right outside our window!!!"

All of a sudden, giggling and half hysterical, her and I start getting paranoid that people are going to use the outage to ransack our apartment. All of a sudden we're grabbing our purses, tucking expensive-looking things away and getting ready to spend the duration of the outage out at a restaurant or bar where there is electricity and other people.

Situations like that always highlight how our real actions differ so much from our theoretical actions. In reality, it is smart to leave the apartment in a citywide outage when looting is more likely but probably unnecessary for a power outage that affected only one block for a few hours. I like to believe that I'm a rational and calm person who can respond quickly and safely to a sudden crisis but apparently the smallest trigger - like a neighbor out trying to figure out why the power went out - can send me into a semi-panic.

Panic is situations like this are a natural part of animal instincts and will in actual crises save your life. Hopefully realizing my inclination towards panic will allow me to recognize when I'm just being silly and when the panic is legitimate and necessary to my survival. By admitting its existence and learning to recognize the actual rather than perceived severity of a situation will allow me to respond more effectively and successfully in the future.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Life Rolemodel

Growing up, Jane Goodall was always a role model for me. She was a pioneer in science, she was a pioneer for women and now she's an activist who travels 350 days a year speaking about her work. Although I never actively followed her career, she was someone I tried to emulate in aspirations, actions and determination. So when I heard she was coming to campus, I had to go.

Words cannot explain. As another girl in my program put it: "I'll consider myself successful when I'm 75 and can stand on stage, tell off the director of a college program, hoot like an ape and stand in front of a ridiculous puppet while a whole room full of people applauds."

She also did a Q&A where some of the kids she's worked with came up to the microphone with questions. The kids' questions were much more insightful, but isn't that always the case? Honestly, why ask about "what specific piece of legislation would you enact" if you could ask "if you could have one wish, what would it be?"

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

public transportation

Yesterday while I was taking the bus home from school, we got stuck in traffic while turning onto the bridge.

All of a sudden the bus driver puts on the brakes, unbuckles his seat, opens the door and leaves the bus, running down the hill. No one else in the bus even seems to notice what is going on.

I watch the driver run to the bottom of the hill, open a recycling bin and throw a plastic bottle in. Then he turns around and runs back onto the bus.

Only in DC.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Review: Dinner and a Play

Yesterday we decided to go to the Shakespeare Company's Free for All performances of the Taming of the Shrew. They start giving tickets out two hours before a performance until they run out, but people had been lining up four hours before already! They had their dinners and lawn chairs and blankets, like people who line up for UCLA basketball the night before.

We got there at 5pm and waited until 6:15 to get our tickets. Since we then had two hours to kill, we went to a Thai restaurant nearby that is by far the best Thai place we've tried in DC (and we've tried quite a few). It's called Kandalay and both the pad thai and the tom kha (the units of measurement I've chosen for Thai restaurants) are phenomenal.

The Taming of the Shrew was outstanding! If anyone reading this is in DC, you need to go. They are running through the end of the month and out of the three times I've seen this play, this was hands down the best interpretation. As many of you know, I'm a feminist, so there are fundamental issues with the ending monologue that drive me crazy every time I see it, but that's Shakespeare and no fault of the players. I guarantee this will be one of the funniest and most entertaining presentations of a Shakespeare play you'll ever see.

I highly recommend the dinner and a play combination, since the Thai place is literally a block away from the theater and you will have two hours to kill after getting your FREE tickets. Here's the website for more info about performance dates and times:

Wednesday, September 2, 2009


Sorry I haven't updated!! I just had a load of stuff happen all at once. My brother came, then my friend came unexpectedly, then orientation started and advising started and all of a sudden I have my first day of class.

My brother came for 2 full days and 2 half days and with very high aspirations. We saw the Natural History museums, the American Hist museum, the Native American museum, the National Art Gallery East and West, the Botanic Gardens, the Library of Congress Jefferson Building, Georgetown campus, Georgetown downtown, the Modern Art Museum, the Portrait Gallery, Chinatown, the National Monument and the Lincoln Monument.

Do understand the magnitude? One day we did six different things. ONE DAY. My legs were about to fall off.

My program at Georgetown is fantastic. We have the smallest program with 40 people, which means my class is only 20 people. All of our faculty have offices around the Eurolounge, which is an awesome place where we get to sit around, surf the internet or watch soccer games on our huge tv. There's also a little library, in case we want to study.

My cohort is full of awesome people and we've been doing all sorts of social events during the past week. I got free breakfast and lunch during Thursday and Friday orientation, free dinner Saturday and Monday and free lunch on Tuesday. I may be paying for my program, but at least they feed me!!

I'll update more on interesting events in more detail later hopefully. I had to breeze through this entry because I'm so darn behind. Bis spater!