Friday, December 31, 2010

2010, You Will Surely Not Be Missed

2010 was an awful year for me, and I had the distinct feeling it would be. My New Year's Eve last year, was less than welcoming and what followed was worse. It was a year of unwanted change that forced me to take a better look at myself--something which terrified me. I won't go into all the gruesome details, but I will say it felt as though absolutely everything that I had been storing away somewhere very far, grew too large and busted the doors it was hiding behind open. The clean up was tremendous to say the least. Looking back on the pile of filth I rummaged through, I am shocked that I am still breathing and sane. 2010 was terrible, but it was necessary. Gazing at the beginnings of 2011 I am so happy and grateful for everything that ended in 2010, because my future looks a lot brighter than I ever thought it would, and it wouldn't be this way if I continued to hoard the past. So here's to 2011, a year with fresh starts, balanced productivity, happiness, and most importantly my bright future minus the past following behind it like a homeless dog with its tail between its legs.

And to my friends and family, you are the greatest gift anyone could have ever dreamed of. I am truly blessed to have each and every one of you in my life.

I know this post has nothing to do with food or culture, but it has something to do with me and the way I view things. I also felt the unexplainable need to share this with whoever is out there reading the stories and rants of a young woman in Los Angeles.

Happy New Year! I wish you all love, happiness, and health!

Narcissistically yours,

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Jewish Christmas 2010: A Definite Victory

There are certain times of year where, as a Jew (and please forgive me for speaking on behalf of the entire Jewish community) we feel more like outsiders than other times, and Christmas just happens to be the pinnacle of this frustration. Over the years, as Christmas developed into a commercial success, Jews have found different ways to cope with this cultural isolation. For instance, we wrote Christmas songs, which topped the charts such as, "White Christmas" by Irving Berlin, who was originally Izzy Baline, and "Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow" by Sammy Cahn and Jule Styne. Once those catching jingles didn't seem to quite console us like we intended them to, we searched to create our very own festive winter celebration. Conveniently, Hanukkah, the festival of lights, just so happened to take place close to Christmas. Hanukkah was never a holiday of significance, in fact it's not even in the Torah, but luckily for us there was enough gimmicky traits to turn it into what we hoped would be the Jewish answer to Christmas. Alas, Hanukkah, despite all our exploited attempts fell short of the euphoric joy Christmas brings the gentiles. So what was a modern Jew to do? Well, Jewish Christmas of course!

The concept of Jewish Christmas is simple: Chinese delivery and a movie, either at the theaters or at home. Why? Because Chinese restaurants are the only places that will deliver on Christmas, and the movies are a great make-believe consolidation. We can pretend it's not Christmas, rather some other mundane day, which we all, regardless of our religious heritage can enjoy.

This year King Fu in West Los Angeles catered to our (me and my two other wandering Jewish friends) fickle Yiddish needs. When one orders Chinese food not much is expected, except the promise of greasy mysterious food, which will surely add to our high cholesterol and make our doctors "oy" and "vey" in protest. King Fu is speedy, fairly cheap, and surprisingly good in more than just a "I can feel the MSG pumping through my arteries" kind of way. We ordered, with the intention to share: the assorted appetizers, moo shu pork, due to the fact that we were feeling slightly more blasphemous than usual, eggplant with szechuan, which was a disappointment and not my choice, and finally moo goo gai pan, because we didn't know what it was.

Once our gastronomical desires were met, a few others joined us for the second portion of the evening: beer and watching Scott Pilgrim vs. The World. Out of the six of us two were not Jews--a huge victory on behalf of Jewish Christmas. We had achieved, what we believed was impossible, the non-Jews actually wanting to attend our Jewish Christmas celebration, instead of the traditional one--it was truly a Christmas miracle. I think I can safely say that we as Jews are finally on to something a bit more fulfilling (pun intended) than kitschy tunes and spinning dreidels.

Happy Holidays!

Narcissistically yours,

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Hey, Are You Gonna Finish That?

Blogging has been something I have avoided for sometime now, which seems strange for an aspiring journalist. I cannot call it laziness, but rather a fear: "What if I have nothing to say? What if "they" hate me? What if I am boring?" Enough with the what ifs--the New Year is approaching quickly and with it I have promised myself to find a new fear; a fear that is less impractical to my aspirations and find one that is a bit more logical, like heights. Well, here it is, a blog dedicated to what I know best: food, culture, and me.

As a little girl I went through a series of careers I wanted to pursue as an adult; an event which seemed mythical and impossible. One of the more memorable occupations was when at the age of 5 I decided I wanted to be a dentist. Dentistry was perfect for several reasons, one of which was because I didn't want to be like all the other girls in my class who dreamed of being an actress, singer, or gymnast; rather I wanted something uniquely me and flavored toothpaste, bad jokes, and the treasure chest was where it was at. Another reason was because I was naive--I had never had a cavity or any other dental problems until my late teens, and looking back on it now I would have made a much better rock-star. Once I realized that being a dentist meant being bitten daily I decided to explore other options, and one that continuously lingered in my mind was becoming a food critic. I may or may not have went through a chubby phase during my elementary school days and I knew officially announcing that I would like to eat for a living would only welcome harsh teasing. Now that I can confidently say that I can whoop all their miniature butts in hand-ball, writing about food (partially) doesn't feel so scornful.

Food is essential, and in my humble opinion (which really isn't so humble) having a developed palate is as important as having good taste in music or some sort of coherent fashion sense. Though this blog won't solely be about food, but rather my life and the world as I see it now, it will be something I refer back to often. So here I am, on top of my soapbox, doing what I do best: critiquing and judging.

Narcissistically yours,