Monday, November 3, 2014

Things I (Surprisingly) Like

There are a lot of things I am not terribly keen on: black licorice, Jägermeister (incidentally because it tastes like black licorice), crop tops, books that are cultural phenomenons (minus Harry Potter, of course), Nicki Minaj songs, most top-forty songs (minus Tswift, of course), people who use poor grammar, people who always correct other people's grammar, other people in general at Trader Joe's...I could keep going but we would literally be here for the rest of your life (because clearly, I plan on outliving you).  And that's another one: people who misuse the word literally.  Anyways, whenever my immediate, knee jerk reaction to something is not "this is the worst," it's always good, if not a little unexpected, especially when it is something that falls squarely outside the traditional range of the Wendy-likey spectrum.  Gross. Control X.  Cut from memory.

Okay, we can begin now.

1. This cover of "Once Upon a Dream" by Lana Del Rey

I am not normally a fan of Lana Del Rey, or the original version of this song for that matter but this cover randomly snuck into my auditory system via Pandora on the train ride home from work one day (and no, I totally wasn't listening to my "Colors of the Wind" radio station) and I gotta say...I didn't hate it.  I know, I was surprised too.  I even listened to it again later that evening. Crazier still.  I find the haunting, dream-like quality of it to be quite pleasant and the vocals--though a little sleepy (maybe that was a conscious choice given the subject matter?)--to be fairly decent. Will I add to my list of all-time favorite jams? Um, no.  That is reserved solely for Queen and Tswift.

Good lord, off to an inauspicious start. Like always.

2. House Hunters

I doubt it will come as a shock that I like this show--I mean, have you met me? Reality TV and I are soulmates--BUT, it may come as surprise that I had actually never seen an episode of this show until October of this year, when they uploaded a whole collection of them on netflix and now...I'm officially obsessed. I even managed to work in some house hunter vernacular--crown molding and built-in--into a conversation about someone's apartment recently and felt really impressed with myself.

3. Weyerbacher Imperial Pumpkin Ale

Call off the search, I've finally found the ultimate heavy weight pumpkin ale champion.  It's a little difficult to find (not in the two liquor stores near my apartment=difficult to find) but it was totally worth the two week wait of having my sister buy it for me and hold on to it until our car was fixed so that I could go and pick it up from her so I wouldn't have to awkwardly lug it around on the T.

It tops nearly everyone's best pumpkin ale list, which is no surprise because it essentially tastes like pumpkin pie flavored beer, which is precisely everything I always wanted.

4. Fleece-lined Tights

Living in Los Angeles for the past seven years has turned me into a dress-wearing all year round type of gal, so you can imagine my level of disgruntlement at the prospect of abandoning this upon moving back to the East Coast, since winter and wind chills makes this type of lifestyle seem, how shall I put this?...less sustainable.  I remember my sister and I would sometimes wear wool tights back in our elementary school days but my initial googling for such a product yielded less than compelling results. thanks.

It seems that within the past 20 years or so there has been a trending away from wool tights toward fleecier pastures and reader, I could not be happier about this.  I found these at urban outfitters for $16 and they are a-mazing.  The quality to price ratio here is in stark contrast to much of their clothing, which is a whopping $60+ for what looks like a garment sewn by rhesus monkeys. And we all know what terrible sewers they are [actual evidence to support this pending.] 

5. Ponchos

From Forever 21 (although I am edging in on Forever 30...)

Sure they are a little Clint Eastwood from The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly, but to be fair, I base most of my fashion choices on him.  That's where I got my crotchety old man uniform I now wear daily.

Actual picture of me from this past Sunday. Complete with scowl.

6. This cartoon

I am not typically a fan of this sort of thing.  But the "recently became friends with Bird" got me.

7. Instagram

What is this? 2010?  Yeah, yeah, yeah.  I'm a little tardy to this party but, after a period of some serious ambivalence, I've finally decided that I do in fact like this whole instagram thing. Although you won't see me posting selfies of myself on the T like my 20-something counterparts (my artistic dream is to take an inappropriate selfie with someone taking an inappropriate selfie in the background), I've managed to find the enjoyment in selecting a picture from my camera roll, slapping a vintagey looking filter on it, and basking in the validation I get when people admire my heavily edited, photogenic life (where my cowlick is only marginally visible).

Go see for yourself at wkozak1.   Yes, my originality for screen names knows no bounds.  I'll give you one guess as to what it is for pinterest and literally every other online account that I have...

I'll give you a hint: it's not zzzzzzzzzzz84, but for the level of effort I put into it, it probably should be.

8. Spiced Apple Pie

My Polish grandmother used to make the best apple pie, but like most of her recipes, she didn't write it down because written recipes are for noobs.  Newbs?  Nubes? Whatever the cool kids are calling it these days. 

Probably for this reason, I have never been able to find an apple pie recipe that I like.  They are either too buttery or too plain or too fill in the blank.  After our grand apple picking adventure at Lookout Farms a couple of weekends ago (side note: this place is one of the longest running farms in New England, which you would think bodes well for it, but what doesn't is the four dollar sign expense rating it has on yelp.  I originally assumed that this was a mistake because, to put this in perspective, Top Chef head judge Tom Colicchio's restaurant Craft in LA has four dollar signs.  What kind of u-pick farm would have four dollar signs? Am I right?  Wrong. So. wrong.  We had to pay an entrance fee and a u-pick fee and as I don't particularly enjoy tyranny I will likely not be returning), when our volume of apples ballooned to an overwhelming figure, Moses and I decided it was high time to do some much needed apple-related baking, so we googled around and found this recipe, which ended up being shockingly good. (No pictures for this one, we eated it all of it.)

Hmm...that's pretty much all I got.  But Wendy, you ask, why are your lists never normal numbers? Can't you think of two other things you like to round this off?  Nope.  Sorry.  Not happening. And don't expect another blog post any time soon, either.  I can only manage unconventionally numbered lists and bi-monthly entries.  It's just who I is.

And if you can't tell by the level of sass, I am starting to feel a little more and more like myself each day.

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