Friday, May 25, 2012
Friday, May 18, 2012
Whenever my parents and I are in the same place, my mom will ask me to make a salad because mine always taste the best, she says. It's so gratifying to watch them enjoy something so thoroughly, and (always) marvel over the deliciousness of the dressing; I don't think my mom ever quite believes that it's usually just olive oil and vinegar/lemon juice/orange juice with salt and pepper (occasionally mustard) thrown in -- not really a dressing at all. My parents make their salad dressing the way they make curries (or, in fact, most things): they put in pinches and dashes and splashes and glugs of this and that and the other. The result always tastes very good, but is a study in intricacy, involution even. Of course, it is occasionally the case that the situation is reversed: I remember looking at my father with intense distrust when we went to the market in Paris so he could buy ingredients for soup, and all he picked up was one leek and one large potato. When it came time to prepare the meal, I would have hovered over him in the kitchen had the kitchen been large enough, but instead I sat in the living room shouting annoying queries as he calmly cooked: "Are you sure you don't want chicken broth? Should I get some carrots? There are vegetables in the fridge! Maybe some mussels?" And yet the soup -- practically just water -- ended up being one of the best I've ever eaten. (I still don't know how he managed that.)
Just some perfect olives, vivid green and
Tuesday, May 15, 2012
I feel guilty about the vegetables I just don't like, though. I mean, what have they ever done to be unlikeable? Nothing. There's no reason I don't like them except that I don't. And so I feel ungenerous towards them. Like I've done them wrong. Like my antipathy is simply a lack of understanding. If I just got to know them better, I would understand their charms.
Friday, May 11, 2012
Tuesday, May 8, 2012
He invited Jürgen Habermas to lecture in New York, he of the public sphere and theory of communicative action et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. If you are reading this and have no idea who Habermas is, not to worry -- I barely knew anything about what he had written at that point, though I knew, from way he was spoken of by people who knew better, that he was someone who had done game-changing work in political theory. Someone that I should have known, in any case.