02 December 2007

baking extravaganza

The day before Thanksgiving I baked four-dozen vegan cupcakes. Here are those photos I was talking about.

First, I got all my ingredients out on the counter.
Everything else I need on the table.

A'mixin' and a'stirrin'...

First batch into the oven.

Ding! First batch is done!

Next batch (mmmmmmmm, chocolate)

Three dozen down, one to go.

And finally, the full four-dozen waiting for frosting.

The photos I shot at home of the frosted cupcakes came out so poorly I chucked them away. But here's a nice shot, I took at work, of the very last two cupcakes from the entire four-dozen.

They turned out to be a big hit, so I'll definitely be baking these again.

A special shout-out MUST go to Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero, who wrote Vegan Cupcakes Take Over The World. Without their amazing, little book these cupcakes could NOT have been made. And also special thanks to Stephanie, my baking inspiration.

29 November 2007

go see this exhibit

If you're in NYC and you have a few minutes to swing by the NY Public Library on 5th Avenue, please go check out this exhibit called "Line Up" by Marshall Reese & Nora Ligorano. It's causing quite a stir and is supposed to be hilarious if you have a sense of humour.

17 November 2007

given the gravity of my previous post, i think we sometimes need to be reminded there is still beauty in this world. two weekends ago on 3 november there was a massive swell that came to our new jersey beaches.

this is one of the better shots i managed to get off in the fading light of the day. it's hard to tell, but that wave is about ten feet. it was an amazing day to witness.

14 November 2007

It was just Veteran's Day...

As I was driving home Tuesday night from the bus and listening to the news on my local CBS AM radio station, I caught the tail-end of a story they were simulcasting from the CBS Evening (TV) News. It was about the suicide rate among Iraq "War" Veterans and the information CBS News uncovered is astounding.

("CBS News did an investigation - asking all 50 states for their suicide data, based on death records, for veterans and non-veterans, dating back to 1995. Forty-five states sent what turned out to be a mountain of information. And what it revealed was stunning. In 2005, for example, in just those 45 states, there were at least 6,256 suicides among those who served in the armed forces. That’s 120 each and every week, in just one year.)

I know this subject is kind of a bummer; However it gives me pause to think about the soldiers and Marines who managed to make it out of Iraq alive only to come home and kill themselves because of the inadequate support offered by the Veterans Administration, our government and the current administration who SWEARS they "Support the Troops"

It is clearly NOT okay that our returning troops don't get the care and support they so desprerately need and the information gets swept under the rug. This should be headline news!! EVERYONE should know about this!

That's why I'd like you (all three of my readers) to PLEASE go (I'm seriously begging here) read this story from CBS News and tell as many people as you know who will listen about this awful, awful thing. Ideally, the more people that know, the less the government can cover up what they're NOT doing for our armed forces.

And, if you happen to be a vet reading this, please check out Vets 4 Vets. It was started in 2005 "by a Marine Corps combat veteran of Vietnam" FOR other Veterans as a means of support. Who better to talk about your experiences in Iraq or Afghanistan with than your fellow troops?

If you claim to support the troops, this is something you CANNOT turn your back on.


05 October 2007

i heart cupcakes

I got to eat this today. Liz bought it for me because she's my friend and she loves me. It came from The Little Pie Company on 14th Street.
I loved it so much I took a photo of it at work.
I haven't finished the whole thing.... yet.

UPDATE: I never did eat the whole cupcake. I can't believe I'm saying this, but it was just too much.

03 October 2007

these people are crazy!!!

And not in a "had-one-too-many-margaritas" fun way kind of crazy. But actually a dangerous and sociopathic sort of crazy!

Seymour Hersh, the Pulitzer Prize winning journalist, wrote a recent article in the New Yorker titled "Shifting Targets - The Administration’s plan for Iran"

In Hersh's lead he says... "In a series of public statements in recent months, President Bush and members of his Administration have redefined the war in Iraq, to an increasing degree, as a strategic battle between the United States and Iran."

This is scary stuff going on here! Instead of our government taking responsibility for our role in creating this "war" in Iraq, they are now trying to blame Iran for what ails us in this quagmire of all quagmires. In fact, our government recently voted to classify a branch of Iran's military as a terrorist group (I refer to the Lieberman-Kyl Amendment).

The passing of the "Sense of Senate" makes me ashamed. And!!! I am wholly aware the implications this kind of vote will have toward starting a "war" with Iran.

Seymour Hersh is one of the Administration’s more outspoken critics and has been waaaay ahead of the curve when it comes to calling out their warmongering.

Please take some time to read this very important article. I don't think you'll regret the time.

P.S. You can also watch Seymour Hersh on Countdown with Keith Olbermann here.

30 September 2007

wall of death

Work has been so insanely busy that I have hardly felt the urge to sit for further minutes/hours in front of the computer. In fact, I have such an aversion to extra time at the computer that I haven't edited any of my work since August. Here is ONE photo from my (not so) recent trip to Sturgis. Once things quiet down I'll be posting more images and writing, so until then, I hope you enjoy this one photo.

23 July 2007

be offensive by going on the offensive

There's a great read over at Fire Dog Lake (one of my favorite blogs, I might add) where a person with the moniker Ghostman wrote the following comment responding to a post by Christy Hardin Smith:
"What hangs in the balance is the fate of the nation — and it is time that we all started to tip the scales. And I’d like to talk about some ways that we can do just that…"

1. For many months now, I have advocated a hard, aggressive, indeed, a nasty approach. I've called it, from times of old, "getting down in the weeds". Finally, about a week ago, a fella...?Welsh?...wrote at fdl a lengthy article which essentially set forth in long, flowery language what I have advocated for quite some time. If you missed the article, I strongly encourage you to find it, and read it. If you did read the article, I strongly encourage you to go back and read it. The ONLY way to deal with these R teamers is to...get down in the weeds.

2. Let me educate all on another benefit of taking the offensive. It's called: Pressure. Whenever you attack, and carry the attack forward, you put the other side Under Pressure. (Indeed, there's even a R&R song, I'm terrible at song names and band names, but the refrain, the chorus goes "Under Pressure")

And when you put the enemy on their heels, they start to make mistakes. They REact, instead of taking the initiative. You put them, cue the music: Under Pressure. When you attack, and carry the attack forward, the enemy is confused. A mild but growing panic sets in. In the political context, the enemy now says and does things it otherwise wouldn't have. You've put the R team, cue the music: Under Pressure.

The R team will then say silly things which only further weakens their cause and their stance and their defenses. They are now: Under Pressure.

"Stunts" such as Harry closing the Senate months ago, or our recent Senate all-nighter, are NOT stunts at all. They are the purest form of surprise, deadly, and hard-hitting aggressive ATTACK. And "down in the weeds" as well. Each time, the R teamers gurgled in indignation, whined in a hissy fit, and did and said things they otherwise wouldn't have. The R teamers were: Under Pressure.

These are the tactics that must be used. Get used to being called names; get used to alot of whining, get used to MSM for a time, siding with the R teamers; get used to a roar of indignation. But pay them no attention.

Their volume of complaint only documents what they feel: Under Pressure. Keep up the attack. Do not let up, do not show mercy. Always keep these lizards where they deserve to be: Under Pressure. This is how you WIN."


Please click the links to take a look at the well-written, thoroughly linked piece. We DO need to go on the offense. The Repubs have, for far too long, commandeered a position of "superiority" when it comes to framing the arguments and making points and we've allowed this to happen. We need to remember that we too can frame the arguments and turn their tactics back on them, particularly by asking the right questions and using the facts and the truth. We're not playing "dirty" when honesty is our weapon. The truth hurts and we need to get these people where it hurts with THE TRUTH! We should remember this from our reading of Crashing the Gates, How Would A Patriot Act and 50 Simple Things You Can Do To Fight the Right.

11 July 2007

cherry picking history

In one of the last pieces veteran reporter David Halberstam wrote for Vanity Fair before his untimely death in April of 2007, he examines how "Bush's "history," like his war, is based on wishful thinking, arrogance, and a total disdain for the facts."

"We are a long way from the glory days of Mission Accomplished, when the Iraq war was over before it was over—indeed before it really began—and the president could dress up like a fighter pilot and land on an aircraft carrier, and the nation, led by a pliable media, would applaud. Now, late in this sad, terribly diminished presidency, mired in an unwinnable war of their own making, and increasingly on the defensive about events which, to their surprise, they do not control, the president and his men have turned, with some degree of desperation, to history. In their view Iraq under Saddam was like Europe dominated by Hitler, and the Democrats and critics in the media are likened to the appeasers of the 1930s. The Iraqi people, shorn of their immensely complicated history, become either the people of Europe eager to be liberated from the Germans, or a little nation that great powerful nations ought to protect. Most recently in this history rummage sale—and perhaps most surprisingly—Bush has become Harry Truman."
Read the rest by clicking this sentence...

10 July 2007

dems, git off yer butts!

I am linking to a short yet great post by John Aravosis @ America Blog about why the country is so unhappy with our Democratically lead legislative branch. Click this sentence to go read it. And please do go read it, you won't be sorry.

givin' it to wolf

Click this link to watch a great video of Michael Moore blasting CNN's Wolf Blitzer...

07 July 2007

staten island ferry

shot on 22 June 2007 from the Temptress during the Weakerthans Rocks-Off boat cruise.

27 June 2007


i shot this photo two years ago of my work-friend alex. i like the photo.

10 June 2007


ironically, coincidentally, fatefully someone had already carved this into the seat we happen to ride on the ferris wheel.

lobster fest 2007

This weekend was Lobster Fest with the Palaitises, the Martins and the Ottingers in Ocean City, NJ. Stephanie, Peter, Dave, Karen, Deville, Maria, Miles,(we were missing Fred) Matty and me. We ate a TON of food and had a great time. Stephanie is going to blog more about the food on Yum Yum Kid Cupcake really soon... I'm just going to post a few images now and maybe a few later on.

Overall it was a fantastic time well-spent with friends we don't get to see enough of, hanging out, talking, laughing, drinking, and eating.
A LOT of eating...
There was Mack & Manco's pizza
There were doughnuts, .
We steamed our own clams

and lobsters.

Saturday night we went to the boardwalk where we also went on the ferris wheel

03 May 2007

27 April 2007

tell us the mission


10 April 2007

19 March 2007

open letter to speaker pelosi

One of the contributors to one of my favorite 'blogs (FireDogLake) wrote a fantastic open letter to Speaker Pelosi about her comments that "impeachment is off the table.”
Please take a gander here.

Given the horrendous executive power grab of our current administration, nothing should be off the table.

Please check out the great post and pass it around.

15 March 2007


speed chief


13 March 2007

a lovely new blog

My friend Stephanie has joined us in the 'blog world with one of her own! She's only just begun, so check back often and see what she's got cookin'.
Pun completely intended.


20 February 2007


17 February 2007

16 February 2007

ice storm redux

a tree encased in ice after the storm the other day.
the sky was really that blue.

15 February 2007

bah humbug on valentine's day...

I hate Valentine's day. I think it's crap.

Don't think me bitter, it's just.......

It's a day that puts an undue amount of stress on lovers and mates in a forced expression of love and devotion. They should not be beholden to one particular day, where expectations are high and disappointment is bound to happen.
Even though it is meant as a day of romance, because of the high level of presumptions, it's all but killed.

A person should be able to express their love on any day of their choosing and do so in a manner of their own choosing. It should not be dictated by Hallmark and over-priced roses. Why is it that flowers cost so much more on the 14th of February than any other day of the year?

And then, there are those not in a couple who are made to feel like less of a person because they don't have a valentine. They're made to feel small, slight, inferior. It's just wrong.

Profess love on a random day and surprise your partner. For the better part of the past sixteen years I've preferred to be wowed when I'm least expecting it rather than have it be forced and hold less meaning. I like the spontaneity, it's more exciting that way.

p.s. i didn't take this photo. it was found on the google.

05 February 2007

love is a mix tape

I literally just finished the book, "Love is a Mix Tape" this morning on the bus.

The book hooked me right away and had me laughing and then crying all in the first short chapter.

For those of us that remember mix tapes, actual TAPES, and LOVE music, this is a book you MUST read! And even if you don't remember mix tapes, this is a good book that describes exactly what a mix tape is and what it means.

It had me reminiscing, waxing nostalgic for that mix tape Matty made for my birthday the second year we knew each other. The actual tape has ceased to exist; it snapped from over-playing, but I still have the cover he hand-made and drew a photo of a bicycle on and wrote sweet things on the inside. It doesn't even have a song list, but I remember some of the gems, that no matter where I am when I hear those certain songs, they will forever remind me of him.

It's a quick read that you're kind of sad to have end. It elicited a whole range of emotions and had me actually laughing out and reading passages to Matty so he could laugh too. I started reading it Friday evening and by Friday night when I was out, I already had to tell anyone that would listen to read this book.

It's a non-fiction work by the Rolling Stone writer Rob Sheffield. You can purchase the book from here or here. I won't shop at amazon.com any longer, so the links are to Powells Books in Portland, OR and to Barnes & Noble dot com respectively.

As an aside... Amazon likes to contribute a lot of money to Republicans so I don't give them business any longer. Plus, Powells is an independent book seller and a really rad place. If you ever get to Portland, OR go check it out. It takes up an entire city block.

So go buy the book and then tell everyone YOU know to read it too.
It's that good.

04 February 2007

uptown A-train

12 January 2007

meatloaf muffins with barbecue sauce

Yesterday I was sent a link for something called a "meat cake"... Click here to see for yourself.

I was repulsed and facinated at the same time. Then I had a craving for meatloaf and mashed potatoes.

Weeks ago I would have been bummed about this, with our oven being on the fritz and out of order, but it was just fixed last week and I was ready to bake!

Now, meatloaf takes FOREVER to cook. The prep time is negligible, but the cooking... Ugh! You could starve before the damn thing comes out of the oven!

Thanks to the internets, I found a recipe on foodtv.com by Rachel Ray of the 30-minute meal fame. The wonderful thing about her 30-minute meals is, obviously, they're ready in 30 minutes! Now maybe you're wondering how you'd prepare and bake a meatloaf in 30 minutes? Well, I'll tell you how! MEATLOAF MUFFINS!!!


Like I said, the prep time was pretty painless... For the meat part, you pretty much just dump all the ingredients in the bowl and then mix everything with your hands. The sauce is super simple and should be made in a separate bowl and mixed with a spoon, which you'll use again. So don't throw it in the sink like I did and then smack yourself on the head after, muttering, "Why did I do that? I could have used that spoon again!"

The recipe called for use of an ice cream scooper to get the meat mass into the muffin tin, which is what I did but if you don't happen to have a scooper, I'm sure many other things will work. ...
Fill all the muffin cups and use the remaining sauce (plus that spoon you didn't chuck in the sink) and slip the pan into a pre-heated oven and let them bake at 450 degrees for 20 minutes.

Once they're done, you let them cool a bit and then pop them out and serve!

Now I left out a bunch of steps, which will make sense once you check out the recipe in-full. So if you click here you can check it out at your leisure.

It's also here...

1 2/3 to 1 3/4 pounds ground sirloin
1 medium onion, cut into chunks
2 ribs celery from the heart of the stalk, cut into 2-inch pieces
1 green bell pepper
1 large egg plus a splash of milk, beaten
1 cup plain bread crumbs
2 tablespoons grill seasoning (recommended: Montreal Steak Seasoning by McCormick)
1 cup smoky barbecue sauce
1/2 cup tomato salsa
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
Vegetable oil or extra-virgin olive oil
(or oily cooking spray, which I found to be easier)

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.

Put ground beef into a big bowl. Put onion and celery into a food processor. Cut the bell pepper in half, rip out the seeds and throw them into your garbage bowl. Cut the pepper into a few pieces and add to the food processor. Pulse the processor blades to finely chop the vegetables into very small pieces then add them to the meat bowl. Add egg, beaten with milk, bread crumbs and grill seasoning to the bowl. Next, mix together the smoky barbecue sauce, the salsa and the Worcestershire sauce. Pour half the sauce mixture into the bowl with the meatloaf mix. Mix the meatloaf together with your hands. Wash up. Brush a 12-muffin tin (1/2-cup each) with vegetable oil or extra-virgin olive oil. Use an ice cream scoop to help you fill meat into a each tin. Top each meat loaf with a spoonful of extra sauce. Bake about 20 minutes. Cut open 1 muffin to test that the middle is cooked through.

08 January 2007

images from oz