Friday, October 31, 2008

weird wet night

I showed up  to do phone banking and the campaign worker informed me that due to a recent push of donations they had been able to hire people to do that, which is great.  She said my other option was to go to 16th and J and hold a sign.  I really question the efficacy of that, but she's a pro and she said that's what the campaign is currently focussing on, so I did it.  I walked from 5th and J in the rain, stopping by the Crest briefly to kvetch and check out the haps as far as the Creature Feature doc that Midmo blogged about.  I noted that the Cosmopolitan restaurant is now open.

It was pouring down rain, and I picked up my plastic sign and started waving it around.  There was a small group on each corner.  We got about 20 to 1 positive reaction with tons of honking and waving.  There was some kind of Christian convention going on at the convention center yesterday so we got a lot of flack from folks in nametags.  As soon as I arrived this teenager came up to me and asked why he should vote no on 8.  I stammered, "because..." and he quickly said, "just because?".  Then I recovered and said I felt my gay friends should be allowed to marry their partners and he interrupted with, "even if it's against Biblical principles?".  Well he had me stumped there, and he quickly turned and walked off anyways.  Others took great delight in yelling "yes on 8" or flipping us off or yelling "faggots".  But like I said, the majority were positive.  One women gave us her giant Monarchs umbrella to stay dry, and then she went and bought a bunch of rain ponchos.  It was very touching.  It was crazy to see how many people were talking on the phone in the rain and dark and rush hour traffic at downtowns busiest intersection.

Then I headed back towards my car and decided to get a drink at the Cosmopolitan.  Even though I was in sneakers and soaked and musty smelling they were quite nice to me at the bar as I drank my ten dollar cocktail.  Holy shit is this place filled to the gills with white-haired richies, recession be damned.  It's because the first show next door is "Forever In Plaid" and it was starting in an hour.  The menu is boring as hell, the beer and wine list are terrible, but the food I saw looked damn good.  I want to try the roasted chicken with pomegranite seeds, which is quite lovely, and they have corned beef and savoy cabbage, also.

Then it was on to the movie "Watch horror movies, keep America strong".  This was the slogan of "Creature Features", which ran on late night TV in Sac and the Bay Area.  It was one of the first places that "Hardware Wars" was shown.  Even I remember that.  I was very stoked on this movie as soon as it started.  All of this was just a scoche (is that  real word?) before my time, as Bob Wilkins retired as the host in 1975, but Bob Wilkins is a complete badass.  There aren't many clips online, and the one below doesn't demonstrate how fucking funny he is.  Look at him, though!  So rad.  He smoked the cigar the whole time the show ran.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

cockamamie plan

How do Republicans sleep at night knowing that their party is trying to get 200,000 new voters thrown off the rolls in Ohio over typos?  Have you been following this story?  The Supreme Court already ruled that this is a no-go but now the Bush administration is getting the DOJ involved.  Scary.  Voter fraud is not a real problem!  It hardly ever happens.  Getting these people off could swing the state.

I have a question about a cockamamie plan I am hatching.  I am thinking about going to Guadalajara over the Christmas break.  For those of you that have been, what do you think of this plan?  I would meet my mom there possibly (for those of you who know my mom, I know, I know, this will probably turn out badly).  I guess my questions are regarding safety, and it's probably as safe as any American city for a female on her own, so I'm probably worrying unecessarily, and just sort of wondering how much the city will be shut down between Christmas and New Years.  I've only traveled a few places in Mexico, and not around the Christmas Holiday so I don't know if people are out partying or at home with family.  I wouldn't be there ON Christmas, just right after.  My Spanish is limited.  I can get by, but barely.  Thoughts?

Wednesday, October 29, 2008


Soo.....I thought that I was dead set on seeing the Ganglians this friday at Javalounge, only cuz they haven't played a show in so damn long, but last friday I ran into friends who had just been out to West Sac to Movies On A Big Screen to see Nosferatu, and they told me that they were screening Suspiria this friday.  I love this movie sooooo much!  Even seeing these stills from it is giving me chills, as much from the fashion and decor as for the gore. And thinking about the soundtrack! I think maybe I will have to try to do both, especially since Suspiria screens at seven.  Wow, the week after that they are screening a documentary called "Orgasmic Birth".  Hmm....

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

no on prop 8!

The cheap digital camera that I bought to replace my expensive digital camera has already broken.  Ha! Ha! Ha....Ha.

Until two days ago I had just ASS-umed the prop 8 would not pass because we are in California and California is the best.  But apparently not everyone in Cali is the best, because I guess it is close.  That is unbelievably sad.  I donated a little bit yesterday because I figure Obama has enough and although it's hard to believe, some idiots make up their minds how to vote according to commercials.  The prop 8 foes need more airtime to counteract that stupid commercial that if prop 8 fails teachers will be required to teach children how to be gay.  Even though I reallyreallyreally don't want to, because I hate talking on the phone even to my friends, I'm going to their headquarters at 7th and K on thursday after work (now that I've written this I'll be forced to keep my word) to do phone banking.  Here's the website where you can go to donate or volunteer.  They called me right away when I entered my info and one of the things they want is for people to volunteer time on election day to make sure no one gets confused about what a "yes" and "no" vote mean.  They said that some people are getting calls saying a "yes" vote protects gay marriage.

So there's a raw restaurant in Sac now?  I'll have to check this out.  Has anyone been?

Monday, October 27, 2008

oh yeah!

Before you read the wedding report, I have to tell you that there's a really good show tonight.  Press Club, DJ Mike C., Touchez, Friendly Creatures, and the Sanwitches?  I haven't heard them and I can't find a myspace.  It's only three bucks! Starts at nine?

oh what a night!

Can the word "wedding" really encompass the spectrum of vibes that occurred this weekend?  It's like we need a new word.  There were so many great moments, but some of the highlights included the best man sharing how his love of James Woods have bonded he and the groom together for life, the father of the bride praising the city of Sacramento and all our wonderful trees, that same dad losing his shit when "I wanna dance with somebody" by Whitney Houston came on, the song "december 1963, oh what a night" played twice in a row (I wish it had been thrice), "Porcupine Pie"making its long-awaited (by me) appearance, walking home barefoot (I should have known better as this happened to me the last time I went to a wedding at the Masonic Hall), and a million other things that I can't even put into woods.  Of course the best moment of all was when Janatalie were officially bonded into one celebrity supercouple.  
The funniest thing I heard about the afterwedding is that a certain trio of dudes stayed up until dawn drinking Kahlua on the tracks, went to the Zebra at 6, got kicked out, went to the Flame, got cut off (a quote according to Goodtimes: No, you can't have another drink. I shouldn't have served you the first one.), then tried to sneak back into the Zebra and got kicked out again. They really gave it their all.
I have three wishes: that I could print the text of the best man's speech (I heard the Armeniac had a copy and left it!), that the bachelor party Elvis movie gets posted to youtube, and the MH print her cupcake recipe.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Were you there?

While certain folks were watching the new Dead live at the pyramids DVD at my house, I checked out the play "First Person Shooter" at Capital Stage.  It has certain cringy things about it, but I enjoyed it and I cried at the end.  The actors were really pouring their hearts into it, despite the half empty house and the dude next to me sleeping.  It runs until November 2nd.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

roast chickens?

I know that people always complain when anything changes, but I really hate the Sacbee redesign.  I was just trying to see if there are any new restaurant reviews and I couldn't tell.  Now they have a "featured" one at the top that may or may not be new.  I wonder if you can pay to have your review featured?

Have you guys seen the new Edible Sacramento?  It looks really nice, and has some good articles.  It's quite an attractive publication.  I liked Hank Shaw's article on the bluefooted chickens.  I thought about ordering one but then thought better of it.  I got a chicken at the co-op and roasted it the other day and it was OK, but not very chickeny and some of the dark meat was stringy and tough.  This was a ten dollar chicken that was free range or something.  I expect more. What's your chicken roasting technique?  This was the first time I'd used a recipe from "roast chicken and other stories"-a British cookbook that everyone freaks out about, and the cooking times seemed to be completely off to me.

I finished this book, "The United States of Arugula" the other day.  I read it ravenously.  I recommend it.  It's the history of foodie-ness in the U.S. My eyes would sometimes glaze over when the author when the author went into who cooked under who at Le Pyramide or Le Cirque or whatever, but I love how, whenever you get down to it every big movement boils down to a few people, many of whom are fussy cranks.  OK, this is a crappy book review, but pick up a copy.  There are juicy stories about sex and drugs at Chez Panisse, of course, and Darrell Corti gets a brief mention, too.  It gave me a lot of ideas for other cookbooks and food books I want to pick up, like something from Craig Clairborne, who the auther posits as (did I just use that word right?) the first important food critic in the U.S.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

hot coupon tip

You guys ever read any Colette?  Pretty hot stuff.  How about Gary Snyder?  I never read poetry but there's an article in the New Yorker that makes him seem pretty awesome.  He's built this beautiful house in Nevada City.  So...that's what I've been up to.

Here's another exciting tidbit.  Hollywood Hardware (the one with the awesome sign on Freeport) has a coupon in the NandR that's out now for 20% off any kitchenware.  I guess they have a new kitchenware section.  That could be a sizeable amount if you went for something expensive, like a new knife.  I hate my knives.  They are so dull and I don't know what to do about it.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

the 90s never left

There's a What's Up/Standard Tribesman (oh yeah and Zach Hill) show in Davis tonight that will probably be even more fun than the show at Luigis, just cuz it's Davis and people get excited.  Sac is getting some crazy good shows coming up.  The three that come to mind are: Crystal Stilts/Cause Commotion/English Singles on November 5th, Dreamdate (an excellent 90s style pop band-keep an open mind!) on November 7th, and this one is nuts for real: Vivian Girls and Love is all on November 21st.  These shows are all at Luigis.

The poverty meals continue.  The famer's market on sunday had some good, sweet end of season roma tomatoes for 50 cents a pound.  I used Marcella Hazans recipe to make a sauce.  Couldn't be simpler, really.  Blanch the tomatoes for a minute to skin them.  Chop roughly.  Put a little butter in the pan, throw in the tomatoes and an onion that you've halved, to take out later (that part is weird).  Simmer for 45 minutes.  Delicious.
I also used her recipe the same night to make pasta by hand (as opposed to machine).  Her instructions for this are stern and frightening.  They contain instructions such as: you must execute this complicated, five-step motion QUICKLY and SMOOTHLY and if you hesitate all is lost.  It helps to have started learning at your mothers elbow when you were five. Best of luck.  Nevertheless, it turned out OK.  Here is the dough, kneaded smooth as baby skin as Marcella commanded.  Letting it rest for at least 15 minutes is key.
Then you roll it to this diameter but under no circumstances can the rolling pin pass the edge of the dough!!!! I don't know why.
This is when it starts to not look so hot.  During this part you use your hands and the rolling pin to stretch without pushing down at all.  It's hard to not tear it, and it has to be done quickly cuz the dough starts to dry and look like elephant skin.
Then you fold and cut.  Your knife had better be pretty sharp or you will press the edges of the dought together and someone might cry. Not me, though.
Spoon out the sauce, garnish with fresh basil and parmesan, take a blurry picture.  Voila!

Monday, October 20, 2008

abstract apache

I'm back, obvs, and it's hard to know where to start.  I guess with this guy.  Smiller overheard him tell a lady that he's an "abstract Apache" which is a perfect Kiedis line if I've ever heard one!
We went to a lot of fun places in Ashland and Portland, but Kenny and Zukes Jewish deli in Portland was kind of like heaven on earth.  Do you peep that pickle plate? House made green tomato pickles?! That sandwich was as big as my head and contained: delicious lean and smoky pastrami, creamy and dreamy chopped liver, coleslaw, and Russian dressing.  I know that sounds over the top but it was very restrained.  
This is Cork on Alberta, it's my favorite wine store ever along with Appellation in New York.

We ran into Teddy from What's Up on Alberta, he just moved to Portland from Sac.  I mention it because What's Up is playing at Luigis with Zach Hill tonight.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

those mates of state sure know how to party

Let's play a game.  I'll tell you what I drank last night and you can tell me how I'm feeling right now.

1. Pale ale early in the evening with dinner
2. Sam Adams Oktoberfest (disgusting)
3. well gin martini (disgusting, not finished)
4. huge glass of the worst red wine imaginable
5. shot of tequila
6. bottle of water (this is why I'm still alive)
7. smaller shot of tequila

I'll consider any kind of answer, from the conceptual ("you feel like pond scum in a pond that has dried up") to the quotidian ("dog poo").  Prize to be determined.

I'll tell you what I'm NOT feeling like-going to see Dark Star Orchestra.  

Monday, October 06, 2008

poverty meals

Because of my crappy ugly pictures I can't show you a picture of my first fall supper.  It consisted of a wine-braised wiesswurst (say that three time fast) from Morants, Braised green cabbage, and mashed russets.  The wiesswurst was great.   It was pale and lean, and had a spongy consistency, but in a pleasant way.  Very German.  Weisswurst is the traditional sausage of the German second breakfast (Zweites Frühstück), which is eaten before noon along with pretzels, mustard, and wheat beer.  How do I know this?  Because I have the current Saveur, which is about breakfast and is super fun to read.  This was also my first try at my new Fall food philosophy: poverty cuisine.  Not because I am actually living in poverty but because food inflation has reached such insane levels that I am going to try to just stick to fun variations on cheap staples like beans, lentils, whole grains, cabbage, potatoes, etc.  I can include Morants in there because it's very affordable.  

I'm going to see Mates of State tonight!  Shortly smiller and I will be leaving to follow Dark Star Orchestra and I won't be posting for a week or so.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

to the bp peeps

To all my boulevard park bros, here's something you might find interesting:

Subject: 1926 Capitol Avenue Neighborhood Meeting

Dear Neighbors,

Some of you may have received an email from Heller pacific regarding their latest proposed development at 1926 Capitol Ave.  For those of you who did not receive the notice, please read on and see the attached to learn about the follow-up neighborhood meeting:

Heller Pacific invites you to follow-up presentation featuring its latest development project: 1926 Capitol Avenue (corner of 20th & Capitol Ave.). Our presentation will focus on the proposed building design. Additionally, the Thiebaud Family will be in attendance to unveil plans of the public art component to the project.

Date: Thursday, October 9th
Time: 5:30pm – 6:30pm
Place: 1050 20th Street, Suite 200 (HLA Office @ MARRS Project)
●Enter Lobby and go upstairs to the HLA Office
●Directional signs will be posted
●Refreshments will be provided

To RSVP and to have your questions answered, please contact Andy Ekstrom, Development Project Manager with Heller Pacific, Inc. at  (916) 638-2400 or by email at

Janine Martindale
Neighborhood Resources Coordinator
Serving Council District 3
Neighborhood Services Department
921 10th Street, 5th Floor
Sacramento, CA  95814
Office (916) 808-8193
Fax (916) 808-6534