Week 3 of 6 of bed-rest. I have not written about conflict, or development, or my projects, or life outside four walls because I am still not partaking in any of that in any significant manner. It kills me. But life goes on, and so does learning, even from one's bedside. Here are the ways in which the world continues to make me think and laugh these days (cue "brown paper packages tied up with strings, these are a few of my favorite things." When I start quoting The Sound of Music, you know it is time for this bed-rest nonsense to end.):
- Nicholas Kristof's, The D.I.Y. Foreign Revolution. For the cynics: Yes, I am aware that someone writes some version of this article every month or two. I am also aware that there is a pattern to Kristof's articles: Write about (a) women, (b) the importance of salt in African diets, (c) some obscure mosquito or worm and the ailments it causes, (d) Pakistan, (e) Greg Mortenson, (f) his son's blog in China, (g) rinse and repeat. I do, however, and appreciate that he uses a forum as powerful as the NYT editorial page to shed light on issues that are otherwise not glamorous enough to garner the attention of the readership. I also appreciate Kristof's way of encouraging young people to transform their ideas into actionable community service. And I very much recommend Half the Sky, which he co-authored with his wife Sheryl WuDunn (and became the first couple to be joint Pulitzer prize winners... no pressure on the rest of the marriages on this planet.) Update: Foreign Policy has published a critique of the article here.
- Anything Sloane Crosley writes. In January 2007, Chris Hitchens penned a Vanity Fair article with the title "Why Women Aren't Funny." Sloane Crosley exists to prove him wrong. She reads like a female Sedaris and manages to be both insightful and funny, both sweet and biting -- all without once dipping into the 'chick lit' genre of which some female essayists are wary. Her second collection of essays was published this summer and they chronicle tales of being a 20-something in New York City, traveling woes, apartment stories and the requisite heartbreak. Follow her on Twitter as well for extra laughs.
- Freedom, Jonathan Franzen. I just finished his How to be Alone, the collection of essays critics seemed to hate. And now I want to read the book that critics seem to love to the point of outrage.
- A Bed for the Night, David Rieff. Anything that makes the ICRC write this review, I want to read.
- Women Travelers, Mary Morris. Recommended by a dear friend, and on the wish list for obvious reasons.
- If A Place Can Make you Cry, Daniel Gordis. From Publisher's Weekly: "In 1998, Gordis, his wife and three children left their home in Los Angeles, where he was vice president of the University of Judaism, to spend a one-year sabbatical in Jerusalem. While in Israel, though, Gordis began to feel that it was not only his home, but "an experiment of cosmic significance," that he wished to be a permanent part of. This volume gathers e-mails-some excerpted previously in the New York Times Magazine-and private musings that record Gordis's impressions of his new home up through the current turmoil."
- Ellery: It is no secret that I love female singers and songwriters. I started out with Neko Case and Norah Jones, continued with Regina Spektor and Rachael Yamagata, and fell uninhibitedly in love with Cat Power, whose Good Woman still gives me the chills. Now I am adding Ellery to the list. Listen here for free. (Thank you, P, for the fantastic suggestion).
- Rodrigo y Gabriela: The first notes on the guitar make me want to peel myself off the bed and dance. They instantly transport me back to my Latin America of dance and happiness.
On the Watching Wish List
Baking (and burning)
[Yes, I have become the Woman Who Bakes For Her Loved One And Waits For Him To Come Home and Taste The Banana Bread, but please do not judge. Six weeks of bed-rest, people. I promise I will go back to not being able to boil an egg as soon as the doctor lets me out of the house.]
- Pear Bread. A word of warning: Do not use your new oven to bake something you have never baked before. This one ended in charcoal. Pure blackness. Epic Bake Fail. It also resulted in laughter and the scraping of the burnt layers so as to eat the rest with some peach jam. Cheers to yummy, gooey, still-not-charred cake interiors and oven baptisms by fire.
- Banana Bread. Because who said a bad beginning will discourage you from using the rest of the 24 eggs that are sitting in your fridge? This was a delicious success. Also, there is nothing about the Smitten Kitchen food blog that I do not love.
- Nutella Pound-Cake. The writer titled it "Nutella Pound Cake - Need I Say More?" Amen.
|Love - the Be'er Shevah, Israel edition.|
Photographed on my first adventure out of the house.