End of Year Musings Week 1

Every year, I try to do one of these daily wrap-up memes, though I have to admit that I have some trouble keeping up. I’m more of a brewer than a spewer, so let’s see if I can catch up here to the people working with thinkit.com.

Week 1

Thursday, Dec 1: Favorite Photo
Have a snapshot that encapsulates your year? Or one that represents a great moment? Maybe it just looks dang cool. Show ‘n tell time — let’s see those pics!

We did a lot of family traveling this year, and just generally had a good time together. In this photo, I am at Universal Studios, Florida drinking Frozen Butterbeer in Hogsmeade Village. This is also the year that I discovered the pleasures of Harry Potter, both in a literary and cinematic sense, and I have Edison to thank for that. Drinking Butterbeer – that was a great moment.

Butterbeer may just be the most delicious thing I have ever imbibed. If you go there, think not of calories, but experience.

Friday, Dec 2: Favorite Music
You know SmallBox likes the rock. We can’t resist asking about your album of the year. Why did it grab you?

Hmm. Hate to say it, but my musical taste pretty much died with Kurt Cobain. This year, I listened to a lot of Green Day (the last two albums) and Weezer, but I still like my Elvis Costello and Aretha Franklin.

Saturday, Dec 3: Favorite Read
What did you read this year that inspired you? Share your favorite book or article.

Wow. That’s hard to say because I read some good books this year. I loved State of Wonder by Anne Patchett, Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann and The Marriage Plot by Jeffrey Eugenides. As far as inspiration goes, I know that while I was listening to The Marriage Plot, I felt my own voice more strongly then. I don’t know if it was the rhythm of Eugenides’ prose or what, but it really pushed me in a positive way.

Sunday, Dec 4: Favorite Meal
Did you eat something this year that knocked your socks off? Maybe you tried something new that’s now a fave. Describe those tasty morsels.

Another good question that’s hard to answer. My favorite restaurant is in Margate, NJ, which is south of Atlantic City (in fact, if you look at your Monopoly board, and you see Marvin Gardens — that’s actually in Margate.) Anyway, my favorite restaurant is Tomatoes. They have a crab pasta that’s awesome. It’s more crab than pasta, just chunks and chunks of sauteed-in-garlic-and-olive-oil white crab meat. Good stuff.

Also, anything my father makes, is just to die for as well. He also makes a kind of crab pasta that’s really good, and sometimes he does the same thing with shrimp that makes me wish I were more like a cow — you know, like I had four stomachs

Lucy is a building shaped like an elephant built in 1881. She's right off the beach in Margate.

to put the stuff in. It’s heavenly. He will spend an unbelievable amount of time preparing meals for us as well. He preps his food so lovingly. In fact, I have seen him wash a piece of lettuce and then carefully dry it with a paper towel like it’s a newborn baby.

Anyway, this scampi he makes has little bits of carrot that he slices into small, paper-thin squares. He puts a little clam juice in there too. It’s just the best stuff on the planet.

Monday, Dec 5: Events
What event stood out for you this year? Where was it? Who was there? What did it look like?

I didn’t actually attend any notable events that I can think of right away. In terms of current events, we spent a lot of time in our house talking about natural disasters. Clooney was obsessed with news from the tsunami in Japan, and was thrilled (as well as freaked out) to be in the path of Hurricane Irene, which forced us to cut short our week at the beach.

Tuesday, Dec 6: Community
Where do you go where everyone knows your name?

Everywhere I go.

Wednesday, Dec 7: Neighborhood
Tell a neighborhood story. Did you meet someone new? Run into an old friend? Find a hidden spot you love?

I have made a few new friends in the neighborhood this year, which is cool. Clooney’s got a new bus stop and I really like the ladies who gather there to drop off/pick up their offspring. I have quite a few stories, I guess, and we have had some laughs there in all kinds of weather. I wrote about one of the days here: Random Notes.

Recently I made one of the ladies laugh, and that laughter still rings in my ears for some reason. I don’t know, maybe she didn’t expect me to say what I said, but her laugh just burst out of her in a really delightful way.

It started out with a compliment about her boots. They were really cool knee-high numbers, and she had calves that were just right for the fit. “Yeah,” I said, “I just don’t have the calves for knee-high boots. If I wore boots like that, my head would turn blue.”

I don’t know, that just tickled her funny bone for some reason. And it was a beautiful thing.


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