“You can’t possibly meet someone right now. When I met Nick, I was already totally notorious”—note: Nora was the only person who could make that word sound neither braggy nor sinister—“and he understood exactly what he was getting into. You can’t meet someone until you’ve become what you’re becoming.”—SEEING NORA EVERYWHERE
Because: I find it disappointing a number of commenters are accusing Lena of opportunism with this. Take it for what it is: a heartfelt, meaningful tribute from a young writer to her mentor, a relationship that assuredly would have been richer and more full, if only for more time.
She explained that you cannot wait around for someone to give you permission to tell your stories.
Because: I have a fond relationship with the powers and personalities behind Casa Mun, us having first encountered each other at the start of some phase of both our careers. I was working on my first big freelance travel writing assignment, which was about international cuisine in closed door restaurants in Buenos Aires, while Casa Mun had recently started hosting dinners. Since that initial meeting more than a year ago at this point, we both have grown in our careers, albeit in different industries.
I devoured the author’s writing style and narrative, too. I think this piece is a bite-sized example of food/travel writing that gets it right, in that it is more than “I went here and ate this and it was good” in that it tells personal stories within a cultural context.
“Poor Mexico,” its former president Porfirio Díaz is said to have remarked. “So far from God and so close to the United States.”—Cocaine Incorporated
Because: I’ve been around my dad, who was born in raised in Mexico, where the majority of his family still lives, a few times when the conversation has turned to the drug war. He’s always said, “It’s a U.S. problem being fought on Mexican soil.” This article validates and brings that point home. It’s an interesting way to research and report the problem, as well. I think the amount of bloodshed associated with the trade was a bit downplayed, but at the same time I do think it’s too heavy a point of focus in much of the mainstream media, painting Mexico as some entirely anarchic, hopeless land.
Because: The gym I frequented when I lived in the Palermo Soho neighborhood was a hoot. It was such a scene in this warehouse-like space, and I wrote about over on Tara and Karina Go Out. It also had a lot, a lot of attractive members. When my roommates and I first started going when we moved to Buenos Aires and knew no one save for a few souls, we would brainstorm aloud about how to meet people. Back then in 2010 we decided our gym needed to throw a party. Despite being a seemingly social place with crowd of people looping through machines which if weren’t already broken always seemed on the brink of collapse, and packed classes that turned into rave-like workouts, there really was no organic or non-creepy way (no, I do not need help stretching) for people to meet at the gym. As far as we know that Always Club party never happened, but something similar it seems did. I’m now in a new hood and no longer belong to that other gym, but I would not be averse to attending a shindig it sponsored.
Because:To begin, who considers New Jersey, specifically the Lambertville area, “the country”? I supposed most places when compared with New York City could be. That’s not the point, though. The point is that this piece is chock full of food-related love and respect for my home state of New Jersey: “The Garden State” and I beam with pride. (Maybe this article makes that moniker seem more sensible.) One of my closest friends lives in Lambertville and could very well be neighbors with Jim Nelson in “the country.” The Bent Spoon in Princeton is one of our favorite spots, and the next time I am home I will check out the others, where if chance has it I’ll run into Mr. Nelson.
Because: It has been 14 years since SATC premiered, and this article perfectly encapsulates some ways things have changed since then in a snappy listicle. Also, there was no mention of Girls and I commend them for that, because I think most people would have been tempted to slide it in, somewhere.
One difference, though. I’d like to think it would have been somewhere in South America Carrie would have followed Aleksander Petrovsky to. Buenos Aires is just sooo European, you know.
Because: This article! This video! I die. Simple, sweet, fun, culturally informative, delectable. And no matter how great we think we are in the U.S. and how cool everything is that we’ve got and create, Parisians will always be the coolest. Who wouldn’t want a Parisian’s approval? And there really is no mental (and then caught-on-video) image better than the stereotypical snobby, perfectly coiffed Parisian type attempting to bite into an over-sized, juicy, messy burger purchased right from a truck.
“If this all sounds like scientific justification for afternoon naps, long showers, and Russian literature, you’re right. “We always assume that you get more done when you’re consciously paying attention to a problem,” Schooler told me. “That’s what it means, after all, to be ‘working on something.’ But this is often a mistake. If you’re trying to solve a complex problem, then you need to give yourself a real break, to let the mind incubate the problem all by itself. We shouldn’t be so afraid to actually take some time off.”—THE VIRTUES OF DAYDREAMING
Because: Can or is multitasking lumped in here? (Case in point: this post.) I thought this was common knowledge by now, like the “shower moment” referenced in 30 Rock, but a reminder, especially from The New Yorker, can’t hurt. I always think of how once, a thesis paper I was struggling with wrote itself right out in my head when I was on a long run.