Sunday, March 30, 2008

Best Big Party

Sunday night I threw a party in honor of Ace, but Saturday afternoon (not the whole afternoon, just, like, 23 minutes of it) was spent preparing a little art in his honor.

(Image generated by using this webapp)

The Man of the Hour upon his throne:

Andy had given Ace a totally nice present, CDs of the Church Hymns, here Ace thanks Mr. Lam via speakerphone.

Once the clock tocked past 8 o'clock the revelry was underway, I suppose we should have known there would be Guitar Heroing:

If someone thought my bottom was worth photographing then you know what? I'm posting it.

If you choose to Guitar battle Mike just prepare yourself to be terminally humiliated.

New batteries didn't solve all of my white guitar's problems, it just sort of stinks.

Collin spent the pre-church hours of Sunday baking Ace an Ace of Ace Ace Cakes.

Suddenly and unexpectedly for some, the guitars fell silent for the time of the caking had come.

What you didn't know was that Ace and Brad know each other from back in the day. Way, way back in the day (likesay, 11 years back?)

Twins, wouldn't you say? No, not the tiniest bit? I sort of think they are.

The thing about the cake was that it was an Oreo.

Here you have a pair of formidable home teachers engaged in a conversation where, unusually, the topic is not remembering who is in charge of the lesson this month (that would be me, by the way).

Kristian is one of the fellows we home teach and, as you can see, we've yet to drive the devilish out of him.

It was a totally great birthday party, too bad you didn't come. Happy Birthday, Ace!

In the future I hope YouTube stops being a jerk and I'll post some videos from the party that will really add to the quality of the narrative.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Best Vietnam is SO AWESOME!!

I guess this is my weekend of cheap ethnic sandwiches because a little visit here...

Resulted in this beauty, the house special banh we see the cilantro, carrot, and cucumber portion of the sandwich on full display:

A few bites later, the meat began to reveal itself. I believe it was supposed to be pork, something else, and "Vietnamese Salami" which was probably a euphemism for head cheese to keep me from chickening out of ordering it (good job, it worked).

Also, the bread was magnificent. I was licking my fingers when I finished this baby off. I ordered it "extra spicy" and I think next time I'll have to ask for "extra, extra spicy."

Best Mexico is SO AWESOME! II

Do you know about torta cubanas?

It's a torta with absolutely everything imaginable on it. In the case of the taco truck on 116th Street, everything seemed to include milanesa, ham, egg, hot dog, another layer of milanesa?, cheese, lettuce, mayonnaise, onion, tomato, avocado, jalepeƱos, and probably lots more. Oh man. Can't even stand how great these are, even if this was my first since 1997.

But you know what sandwiches really tick me off? These cuban sandwiches that are pork, ham, pickle, and mustard. I bought a few of those when I first came to New York thinking I was going to get a Mexican Cuban. Nope. Totally different. Not nearly enough pig.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Best Mexico is SO AWESOME!

Oh man. I just found out about this and I'm completely losing my mind over it. A rash of riots and turf wars have broken out across Mexico (and apparently have begun to spread to other parts of Latin America) between Mexican emo kids and the other Mexican rock fans (such as the Punqueros and Rockabillies).

From what I've read and put together and assumed, it all began with this anti-emo rant by an Mexican VJ (I like when he says "deathmetal" and uses English swears):

Which inspired planning and scheming on message boards and blogs and finally a group of Punks and other emo-despisers descended upon a group of emos that hang out in a plaza in Queretaro (here I resist writing a paragraph about how I served some of my mission in Queretaro and how it's a ways off from Mexico City, blah blah blah, etc etc.) in order to reclaim the plaza as their own:

And this has resulted in further anti-emo violence (and emo self-defense) throughout the country:

Me, I just think it's so awesome that there's a whole thriving emo Mexican subculture. On my mission I got a kick out of how Mexican youngsters would latch onto what they made of popular American trends and transformed them into something of their own...back then it was still grunge, Guns n Roses, and the Doors, what I wouldn't do to have unpleasant interactions with emo Mexicans in my short-sleeved white shirt right now.

Agh! Mexico! You're so awesome, I can't even stand it!

A good place to begin your search for much better coverage and explanation of the situation is at this blog, which I really didn't read that closely because I was too busy losing my mind over the YouTubes. I really hope you can speak Spanish and know a little Mexican slang. Really badly I do hope that for you.

IMMEDIATE UPDATE Just posted this post, already discovered a zillion more articles about the emo riots all over the internet. This one from Wired seems pretty good (again, too excited to have found it to actually read it).

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Best New Year's Resolution

As far as I can remember, I didn't make any New Year's resolutions this year. But now I've got a resolution and I mean it: I will NEVER buy another jar of red pasta sauce because yesterday I discovered how to make the most delicious pasta sauce I've ever had and there will be no turning back for me.

This is how you make the best pasta sauce: crush a can's worth of stewed tomatoes, mix them up with some onions and garlic you've been frying for a bit. Done. And it's beyond magnificent, your pound of spaghetti doesn't stand a chance.

And if you want to, adding some Italian sausage sure doesn't hurt. And maybe some nice bagged salad to finish it off?

Even Anonymous people that can't stand food posts can't deny this spaghetti was numero uno.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Best I Was There, Too II

Like Jeff and Dave, I went to 2 Gold for Easter Dinner on Sunday and, like Jeff and Dave, I'm going to post pictures of pretty much the same stuff. Because we're shooting for thoroughness here, right?

Arriving at the apartment, I was stunned by the setting of the table that Amber had performed and the little place cards she had prepared for all of us.

Chairs had to be brought in from far and wide to accommodate all the bottoms that would be needing a place to sit that evening.

My responsibility for the day was appetizers, ladies and gentlemen, I present to you appetizers

The appetizers were: cheeses and spicy nuts, spicy nuts that I made myself.

Look how good my nuts were! I made a set of Asian spicy nuts roasted in chili powder, cayenne pepper, and fish sauce and a set of Costa Rican spicy nuts roasted in cumin, generic Cajun seasoning, and Lizano salsa.

For the cheeses I had a variety of crackers including these incredibly delicious little guys, Keebler Flip Sides pretzel crackers. Holy moley! These are the crackers of my dreams, I don't dare try the cheddar variety for fear of never eating anything else again in my life.

Pamela was in charge of the crudites. There was a whole email chain where people were trying to figure out what crudites were. Philistines. Sometimes I wonder how I manage to even party with these people.

Back in the kitchen, oh man, look at that ham!

The Easter Bunny appeared, bearing Harlem sodas and egg treats for everyone.

Look at the joy he spread all over the place! Everyone was absolutely delighted with their little personalized Easter eggs.

But take a close look here at Jeff's egg and, I mean, how could one not be delighted?

Finally, it was time to get down to business and have ourselves our Easter dinner.

This is my plate before I got my green beans and collard greens.

Hooray for Easter!