Monthly Archives: March 2013

Ode to Goat Videos: Black Sheep

March 22, 2013



Do you have a black sheep in your family, circle of friends, workplace?  Are you the black sheep?

I have a theory that black sheep are extremely sensitive people.  No matter how extroverted they may seem, they are truly introverts.  Look up the precise definitions of these terms here.  I imagine that many famous entertainers are “black sheep.”  My challenge has always been: how to keep the black sheep in my life and not lose them forever.  You know how cats always want your attention when you’re knee deep in work?  Well, this is a black sheep quality.

Tips for Black Sheep Retention:

1. Focusing LOTS of attention on this person will set them running into eternal hiding.  Dash any hope of receiving a mere smoke signal from this person.

2. Be cool.  When they decide it’s safe to share some time/information with you, downplay your inner Mexican-Jumping-Bean-For-Joy.

3.  Accept that your fantasy of daily hand-holding walks in the park, and sharing spaghetti Lady and the Tramp style is not really going to happen.  Ever.

Ponder the idea of abandonment or lack of acceptance this person may deal with.  It may help to identify with them.

How else do you keep a Black Sheep in the fold?

In case you missed the phenomenon, go here: Goat VIDEO

(Photo by Alice Popkorn, Via Flikr)


Sweet Illusions

March 21, 2013



There is power in illusion.  Last year, Chris and I were gifted a two-night stay at a very fancy chateau/inn north of Seattle.  One of the amenities was “a breakfast of on-site, freshly made French pastries such as pain au chocolate and croissants with homemade jam,” to be served in our room daily.  I am a baked goods FANATIC and this was my most anticipated portion of our stay.

The room was spacious, charming and cozy with its own fireplace.  The furniture was French vintage.  The curtains were flowery.  The bathroom en suite had a huge jacuzzi tub, separate shower and private water closet.  The grounds were picturesque.  Poplar leaves as big as my head were falling around us on our walk.  After a luxurious night’s sleep we woke to our Inn Keeper’s rap on the door.  Hooray:  pastry wake up call!  We sat in bed and I peeled back the white cloth napkin corners to reveal a trove of treats.  MMMM. Each slow bite with lots of enjoyment noises from the two of us-speechless.  More jam.  More butter.  Trading bites of each of the six varieties.

Later while we were out, the Inn Keeper called to ask us about our plans for that night’s included cooking class and I launched into a 5 minute soliloquy I had mentally written about her pastries.  “Oh,” she says.  “Well about that,” she says.  Apparently the pastry dough that she sets out nightly for the following morning had failed to rise this particular morning.  She had dashed out to SAFEWAY and purchased the baked goods we enjoyed.  Bahahahaha.

I love the irony but I would have been perfectly happy living the pastry dream I had that morning.  Have you ever served something to guests that you unbeknownst to them purchased?  Have you ever realized what/who you loved what not what he/she/it seemed?  Do you prefer illusion or facts?

I vote for the illusion as long as there is no way of ever finding out/harm in knowing the facts!

(photo by Suzi Pratt “Ba Bar Pastries” via Flickr)

Altitude and Attitude

March 20, 2013

MONEY / Uncategorized


Do you ever wonder how they come up with the exorbitant prices for art?  I just read an article that suggested setting a price per square inch based on costs and “an amount that’s appropriate for your reputation.”  Well that’s neat but I connect to a different kind of story.

A friend of mine was an artist.  She did very large, colorful, spiritual, impressionistic pieces of which she had many in her picturesque condo by the beach in the San Diego beach town of Encinitas.  Years before, in a different economy, paintings like these were selling for around $17,000 plus a piece in art galleries.  I LOVE learning behind-the-scenes information and asked her to share with me her experiences in the art world.

She pointed to a smaller piece on the wall and told me how she had initially priced a similar piece around $7000 (I estimate the prices from memory but you will get the idea) and it didn’t sell for ages.  Then one of her spiritual teachers told her of “alititude and attitude.”  It is the idea that a higher price (altitude) holds a higher status (attitude) and that is what collectors identify with.  She tripled the price tag on her piece and it sold within weeks.

Are you influenced by higher prices in this way?  What is an example?

(Bats in Chinese Art, Wikimedia Commons)

Feminists and Wives

March 19, 2013

ROMANCE / Uncategorized


So, I was an officer in the U.S. Navy.  I kind of enjoyed being able to sternly raise my voice if I needed my division of all-male technicians to meet a weapons maintenance deadline.  I enjoyed the power to take away their liberty (free time) if I found them sleeping when they were supposed to be working.  I could always argue my lawyer-like point of view with the Captain or Admiral and get results.

The few times my “military side” has shown through in my relationship with Chris have not ended well for me.  I end up not getting what I want, I’m crying and he is upset with me.  The best way to assert my needs in this domain is with a gentle tone and a sense of trust/dependence on him to satisfy the needs.  Presto:  new piece of furniture or he starts scooping the yard on a regular basis.

Generally speaking (no pun intended), if you are a woman, want to be payed equally, have equal opportunity (except in the case of submarines but that may come as well) and literally fight for what you believe in:  Join the military.  I did.  If you want to have a husband who starts your car for you on cold mornings, accompanies you to medical appointments and buys you romantic gifts you could benifit from following a couple of simple guidelines.  Oh, and if you’re married AND in the military-leave work at work.  The home is no place for war games.  🙂

As a sidenote, I did get results when I used a more “feminine” (while still professional/no cleavage here) approach to getting what I wanted in the military.  Men are the same whether at home or work when it comes to how they tick.  They want to please a pleasant female who trusts they can get the job done.  Wait…I think that’s what everyone wants.

Agree or disagree?

If you disagree, I really want to hear why.  Also, if you disagree, but have interests in anthropology/psychology, would you ever consider trying the above suggestion to see what kinds of results you get?


March 18, 2013



For years during grad school, I subscribed to Sunset Magazine.  Each month it would come and I would spend a few minutes drooling over the cover story, recipes and destinations.  Then it would go on the bookshelf, saved for a post-school period where I would surely have tons of time to do all the things I had been reading about.  There was one issue in particular that caught my attention:  El Capitan Canyon Resort.  The cover photo was similar to the one above.  It was imaginative, cozy, nature-loving and comfortable looking.  It looked like a wonderful place to read a great book.  So, I joined their email list, insisting that I would keep it on my radar.  I have been getting the emails for years and every so often I visit the sight.  The attainability and feelings of whimsy I get each time I revisit the idea of being there are addictive.  We will surely go there one day.  For now, I enjoy the little dangling carrot.

What places are on YOUR list?  What kinds of methods do you have to keep them in your sights?

(photo from El Capitan Canyon)

Weekend Brunch @ Fiddlehead

March 16, 2013

Out and About / Uncategorized


Fiddlehead Fine Foods and Cafe

Fiddlehead Fine Foods and Cafe


4310 SW Oregon St
(between S 44th Ave & S California Ave)
Seattle, WA 98116



Cool Old Door with Glass Top @Fiddlehead



Classic Latte Art Heart & Lumberjack Arms


A Self Service Kinda Place


Pork Hash


Salmon Potato Cakes

Salmon Potato Cakes

Just when we thought we had our “IT” spot for weekend brunch, Anita’s Crepes in Ballard shut down!  We are looking for rich, medium portions of foodie comfort (think butter and sauces) in a charming atmosphere and we’re willing to pay for it!

So this weekend we tried out Fiddlehead Fine Foods and Cafe.

Chris had a vanilla latte and the Pork Hash.

I had Darjeeling tea and Salmon Potato Cakes.

Excellent meal.  Everything was perfectly moist, seasoned and presented impeccably.  I love when a poached egg’s only runniness is the yolk.  Chris’ pork hash had chunks of pulled pork and surely there was some pork fat cooked into the potatoes resting beneath.  mmmm.  My Salmon Potato Cakes were soft with chunks of smoked salmon and creme fraiche.  The greens perfectly complimented each dish-Chris had brussel sprouts and I had fresh baby spinach.

You order when you walk in, get a number, find a seat and set your own table with utensils and water.  The waitress will bring your orders to the table and you bus at the end.  The bill with tip came out to around $40.  A bit spendy for bussing our own table and smallish portions.  On the other hand, the quality was very high and the atmosphere was very cute/neighborhood feeling.  It is a small space but the tables move consistently so I don’t see there being much a wait.  It has a cafe feel but the food is restaurant caliber.  Very cute and fun!  It makes you feel like a local!  But alas…it is just not “it.”  The hunt continues!

What are the elements of your favorite brunch spot?  What dish? Where in the world is it?  I want to go!