Archive for the ‘BR generated’ Category
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Untitled

Lizzie

The sound of a truck backfiring woke me like a gunshot. Taking in my surroundings, I sleepily remembered that I was at Grandma and Grandpa’s for the weekend. The guest bedroom window faced Sherman Way, a busier street than the quiet residential one where I lived with my parents, and I often woke with a start to the sounds of an unfamiliar neighborhood. I turned over in bed, saw that it was 6:50, and felt my stomach rumble with hunger.

In the gray morning light, I got out of bed and traversed the short hallway to the master bedroom where my grandparents slept peacefully. I made my way to the right side of the bed and studied my grandmother’s sleeping face, freckled like my own. After a moment, I lightly touched her arm and whispered, “Matzo meal pancakes. Grandma, matzo meal pancakes.” She stirred and opened her eyes, reaching with one ever-shaky hand for the glasses on her nightstand.  Glancing at my grandfather, she slowly got out of bed and put on her familiar house robe, took my hand and led me quietly out of the room.

As my grandma prepared my favorite breakfast in her small townhouse kitchen, we chatted about school, about what I would do that day with my grandpa, and about books. A sometimes-harsh and always-stubborn woman who could be the sweetest you’ve ever encountered or take you down a peg with her pursed lips, Grandma had a soft spot for me as her youngest grandchild and didn’t bother to hide it from the rest of the family. Those mornings with my grandmother are some of the fondest memories of my childhood, and her constant affirmation that I was the smartest and prettiest little girl in the world certainly made me feel that, if nothing else, I was the most-loved. (more…)

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Brindisi

Lizzie

“Okay, well then,” our tour guide began. “Brindisi now is known for being a port to the Greek Islands, a modest fisherman’s village, a military base, and for its ancient Roman columns which mark the end of the Appian Way.” As our little tram putted its way around the quaint town marked here and there by significant historical landmarks, I wondered why Brindisi isn’t more well known. Its natural harbor has been in use since before the Roman expansion. After being conquered by the Romans in 267 BCE, it became a Naval base and huge center of maritime trade. Throughout a series of takeovers, wars, and natural disasters, Brindisi has remained true to its roots as a port and military stronghold. To a Los Angelino who thought Boston Common was old, Brindisi practically bled history.

Towards the end of the tour our guide, a pretty young woman obviously proud of each landmark and story of Brindisi’s long and meaningful history, took on a somber note. As we worked our way down a quiet and not-exactly-luxurious part of town, she sighed, “You have seen the Godfather, you think of Italy and you think of the glamorous Mafia. The Mafia is not glamorous and it is not good. The Mafia is a cancer on our society.” Her forlorn tone as she spoke of the plague of the Mafia on Italian society revealed the answer to my earlier musing: the Mafia clearly has a stronghold on Brindisi, and it’s prevented a historically significant town from becoming the cultural mecca it should be.

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Hvar

Lizzie

After bidding a rainy farewell to Venezia to board the Seabourn Spirit for a week of unfathomable luxury and adventure, our first stop was Hvar, Croatia. During the months of eager anticipation leading up to the trip, Hvar was the place most shrouded in mystery for me. No matter how much I read about the opulent marina, fresh seafood, and astonishing natural beauty there, I just could not imagine a place so different from everything I’ve ever known, and so far away from any place I’d ever been.

On the ten minute tender ride from the ship to the marina in Hvar, fear of boats and oceans newly forgotten and full of anticipatory electricity, I thanked every lucky star for the opportunity to be here, seeing this. The intense cerulean water, unlike any I had ever seen, eased my worries and calmed me in a way I never imagined an ocean could. As we pulled up to the marina, I was first in line to leap from the tender to land and breathe in Hvar.

The first thing I noticed, which I didn’t expect because I had no expectations, was the smooth, spicy smell of grilled meats. The restaurants on the marina were touristy (and almost assuredly overpriced), but a short walk to the center of the village revealed undeniable Middle-Eastern influence complete with a fast food stand featuring fresh kebab. It was abundantly clear we were no longer in Italy.
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cassette icons : free stuff!

Sean

cassettes-lineup

Seems like everyone is making their own application icons, and there isn’t a better time to do so since iTunes v10 is here. I am not a fan at all of it—it reminds me of the old icons that were around when Apple switched to their aqua interface ages ago. So I made my own so I don’t have to look at it anymore, and I’m sharing them with you. You can download the zip here. I used Candybar to switch out the icon. Enjoy.

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one man’s garbage

Sean

desk

desk

I found this on the street last week and decided to bring it back to life—thought I’d post about it. I fixed one leg, filled some holes, sanded it and painted it black. I painted the drawers teal and gave it some knew knobs “drawer pulls,” from Anthropology (thanks Mk). I’ll eventually give it a new top but for now that’ll do. Check out the before pic after the jump.
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Cranberry-Pomegranate Iced Tea

Mk

ice tea

I’ve never been a huge fan of iced tea. I love hot tea in the winter, could drink it all the time. But iced tea? Not so much. So I don’t know what compelled me to make my own pitcher of iced tea (possibly influenced by being in the South last week and seeing all those “sweet tea” ads) but I’m glad that I did. This is good stuff. I found it on About.com where they called it Boston iced tea (something about the bogs?)

Cranberry-Pomegranate Iced Tea
2 quarts water
1/2 cup sugar
8 tea bags – I used 1/2 English Breakfast and 1/2 Lipton tea bags
20 frozen ice cubes of cranberry (or cranberry+random other fruit juice)
1 lemon cut into slices

Freeze your cranberry juice into cubes (it takes a stupid amount of time to freeze juice FYI). Boil the water and when it starts to roll dump in the sugar and stir until dissolved. Steep the tea bags for 4 – 5 minutes and then remove from heat and throw away the tea bags. Put the tea in a container/pitcher/vessel of some sort. Then cut the lemon and throw them in. Let it cool down to room temperature and then toss in your crazy cranberry ice cubes to start to chill/flavor it. If you want it colder add regular cubes for a delicious and refreshing summer beverage.