Posts Tagged ‘love’
July 3, 2013 | by Sadie Stein
“It seems to me that our three basic needs, for food and security and love, are so mixed and mingled and entwined that we cannot straightly think of one without the others. So it happens that when I write of hunger, I am really writing about love and the hunger for it, and warmth and the love of it and the hunger for it … and then the warmth and richness and fine reality of hunger satisfied … and it is all one.” —M. F. K. Fisher, The Art of Eating
June 19, 2013 | by Sadie Stein
June 10, 2013 | by Andrew Hudgins
I first saw my future wife drinking a beer on the porch at Yaddo, the artists’ colony in Saratoga Springs. A common friend had told me Erin would be there and had gently nudged us toward each other, though she’d warned me Erin was a California-style Catholic handwringer, one who anguished over the plight of the downtrodden. Sometimes she had a good sense of humor, the friend said, and sometimes she was earnest and touchy, so I should watch my mouth until I figured out whether my, uh, particular sense of humor meshed with hers. What I saw, looking at the woman I would marry, was a tall, attractive woman with an open face and a jolt of curly hair off her forehead. Unlike the folktale Erin, she looked eager to laugh. In fact, hers was the face of someone who gravitated to laughter the way other people gravitate toward good looks or the palpably powerful. I decided to go with my instinct, rather than our friend’s warnings, which I’ll admit were more catnip to me than a red flag.
She had a name. Erin McGraw—a name so Irish it might as well be Ireland McIrish, and when she told me who she was, I immediately asked if she’d heard about the Irishman who drowned in the vat at the brewery.
“No,” she said.
“They knew he was Irish because, before he died, he crawled out twice to take a leak.” Read More »
March 19, 2013 | by Robin Hemley
She of the Karaoke Tribe, from the Archipelago of the Interminable Love Song, where Karen Carpenter never goes out of style, has not asked me to prove my love, but when she says she wants to go with her Filipina émigré friends to Diamond Jo Casino in Dubuque, Iowa, to see Air Supply Live! in concert, I seize this as an opportunity, after twelve years of marriage, akin to a renewal of vows, and as close to sacrificing my life for her as I’m going to get. It’s a card I will hold in reserve. “Yes, I cheated on you with your best friend, but don’t forget, I went to see Air Supply Live! with you at Diamond Jo Casino in Dubuque.”
Hard work, marriage.
You remember Air Supply and what they sang. Of course you do. That song. And the one that sounded just like it, and that other one, too. Yeah. Those.
If I seem as enthusiastic about the concert as a zombie at a baby shower, then that’s twice as enthusiastic as I mean to seem. I embarrass easily. I’m overly self-conscious, and when someone does something really stupid around me, such as wearing a fake deer head to get attention, as I saw recently on a commuter flight, I feel that it’s me wearing that deer head. The same holds true at an Air Supply concert. I feel as though it’s me belting out stale lyrics along with the audience. Read More »
February 27, 2013 | by Tallis Eng
To the hundreds of thousands in Asia who start each morning with a bowl of congee—and who, every evening, set their rice cooker to a low boil so that more congee is ready by the next day—it would probably seem strange that I’m about to spend so much time talking about the dish. It’s like someone rambling about corn flakes here. But in Manhattan, congee’s hard enough to find north of Houston Street, let alone beyond city limits. My tiny corner of the world feels like it’s in the perpetual midst of a congee shortage, and sometimes congee’s all I want to eat.
Topped with some mix of scallions, ginger, peanuts, and cilantro, the savory white-rice gruel (or more flatteringly, porridge) is often served in cast iron bowls, sometimes ladled into smaller portions and shared among a group. Read More »
February 14, 2013 | by Ross Kenneth Urken
Three Fourth of July weekends ago, on a crowded Hampton Jitney, beach bag strategically placed so no one could take the seat next to me, I watched a flustered blonde board and sit down directly across the aisle. Think Marilyn Monroe gone boho in the East End swelter. The LIRR had broken down, and she had spent several frustrating hours in the humidity of Westhampton waiting for a train that wouldn’t be fixed.
By contrast, I was cool and composed, having spent the day at a painter friend’s vernissage. At the time, I was a lowly twenty-three-year-old magazine intern and had met the artist while covering an event. Now I was craving some solitude. Slouched and brooding, knees tucked up into the seat before me, I closed myself off. Coupled with my tote-bag force field, I hoped my general vibe said, “No conversation please.”
As she threw down the bag slung over her shoulder, I saw she was clutching a faded pink hardcover, a book of collected poems by Edna St. Vincent Millay. I caught her looking at me—a glance I interpreted as one of contempt. People who take up two seats... But when she had settled in and we began to furtively study each other through the half-light, I realized my misappraisal: she was more curious than anything. We tested the limits of our peripheral vision like elementary school pupils.
The captivity of a bus—coupled with the urgency of a short trip—blends with the spontaneity of bus reservations (compared, say, to planes booked in advance) to make chance encounters inevitable and last minute shifts in fate possible. Millay’s poem “Travel,” in retrospect, seems freakily appropriate for the cancelled LIRR and the day’s noisy disruption: “The railroad track is miles away, / And the day is loud with voices speaking, / Yet there isn’t a train goes by all day / But I hear its whistle shrieking.”
She would later tell me she was struck by how relaxed I appeared when she, by contrast, had undergone such an ordeal. How composed my body language, how casual my unbuttoned shirt (truth be told, what she interpreted as Zen was really just exhaustion).
I decided to say hello first, and we started to talk; the memory of the exact exchange is hazy, imbued as the moment was with the fluttering nerves and saccharine rush of a first encounter your subconscious recognizes as significant before you truly do.
She was an actress who nannied in the Hamptons between roles. Judging by my madras shorts and boat shoes, she assumed I was some kind of pool boy. Not quite, but I was probably one of the few on our bus without a family home somewhere between Quogue and Montauk. We playfully guessed each other’s names.
“Vanessa?” I said. (What, does he think I’m some kind of bitch?)
“Joshua?” she tried. (Is it that obvious I’m Jewish?) Read More »