July 2010 Archives

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One of my friends recently posted a rant on the thoughtlessness of
those who show up to the party clutching only the alcohol they plan to
use themselves. I definitely agree with her message, but wasn't sure
about the circumstances surrounding said event: did the party involve
food, or a birthday? Was it simply an anonymous rooftop gathering
where everyone drinking out of black bodega bags must fend for
themselves? In Brooklyn and Queens, chances are you will be invited to
no less than 10 private parties on a given weekend with varying
degrees of etiquette expectations.

I personally hate to show up empty handed, but if I'm hosting a casual
gathering and specify that I'm supplying 2 boxes of wine, I'd
logically expect people to bring only whatever they want to consume
that isn't wine. On the other hand, my ex rarely if ever brought
anything, because he would carefully explain that "in my country, the
hosts of the party take care of you and do not expect anything in
return" (old habits die hard, and this meant I usually shouldered the
contribution for both of us). The objective of a party is to
facilitate frolic and debauchery, not hand-wringing. What to do? I
like to keep a stash of small presents that can be used for many
occasions.

For the past few months since I left my job, I've been trying to be creative about penny pinching. New York City, as pretty much everyone knows, is damned expensive. Even if you've managed to find "reasonable" rent in an outer borough, the cost of commuting and the undeniable lure of the nightlife here definitely takes it's toll on your finances.

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One of the ways I've been saving money on feed for my chickens is by pilfering dumpsters outside of local breweries here in Brooklyn. Sixpoint Craft Ales has been kindly about offering up spent grain to local chickeners, as they no doubt undertstand the woes of having 50lb bags of feed shipped in from the south for their own chooks. It's quite expensive and not completely in line with my philosophy of keeping it local.

suntea.jpg Can I get a heck yeah?

When it's so hot that I feel as though I'm living in someone's sweaty jock strap, the only thing that seems to quench my thirst is an iced tea. I do not have air conditioning in my apartment (Wanna pay my Con-Ed bill? Didn't think so.) so the last thing I want to do is brew in the conventional way. In an act of rebellion, I pulled out some of my larger (between 2 and 3 qt) canning jars, filled them with clear, cool water and dropped 4 tea bags in each. I use a combination of green and orange pekoe. Nothing fancy, just generic brands I get at Whole Foods. It makes for a light brew with a little bit of caffeinated punch to it. You can tailor make any sort of tea you like. Try mixing in Hibiscus flowers with mint tea bags or Earl Grey (which tastes AMAZING cold with a wedge of orange) Screw the caps on tight, drop em in a sunny spot, and in just a few hours you have a pretty nicely brewed stash of sun tea.

Once you remove the bags, you can sweeten to taste (I use honey, obviously) but you can add some sprigs of mint, thyme or anise hyssop before throwing them in the fridge, resulting in a brisk, refreshing herbal remedy to Hot-as-balls-itis.

Enjoy, friends!

<3M

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This page is an archive of entries from July 2010 listed from newest to oldest.

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