I woke up in Newark, which is close to the city that doesn't sleep....

YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSS. Thanksgiving weekend was a blast! Thanks to gerg for showing me a great time in NYC and thanks to Brian and Suzy for their hospitality.

I hit 4 new states this past holiday: New Jersey, New York, Massachusetts, and Vermont.

We took off from the Minneapolis airport at about 6:30am on Wednesday, which meant an EARLY morning for us, we left the house around 4am-ish. Landed in Newark, New Jersey at the International Airport at about 10:30 and boarded the AirTrain to Penn Station. Penn Station was pretty cool, but we needed to head to Grand Central Station where we were going to leave our backpacks during the day while we toured. MISTAKE! Since 9/11, you can't leave bags anywhere in NYC, so we ended up toting our backpacks around the city as we toured. A little pain in the shoulders at first, but nothing a few Tylenol couldn't cure. Grand Central Station is gorgeous. I loved it, and could have spent more time investigating its nooks and crannies.

We departed Grand Central station and hopped a cab to the Empire State Building, which was gerg's pick for the day. The line was about 45 minutes long (time-wise). I spied on the couple in front of us with LV bags and ridiculous mink coats. They looked surprisingly unhappy, despite their lavish lifestyle. Continuing, we finally reached the observation deck, and oh how we observed, despite the wind. NYC is great from below (I love the subways (yes it was my FIRST subway experience - in MPLS we have a lightrail)), but it's also spectacular from above. As you can see, I got to see my favorite lady sculpture from afar. A cool chic snapped a photo of gerg and I from the observation deck. If you look closely, you can see the Chrysler building between us. NICE. It was insanely windy up there, and our hair took a beating. Mine got all whirled into a frenzy. gerg's got poofy-feathered, like 80s hair.

Headed out for lunch after the Empire State Building tour, and selected NY style pizza. It was my first piece of NY style pizza ever and I loved it! The joint we hit was called Pizza Pete's. Nothing fancy about this joint, but it was close and seemed like the real deal. Gerg had pepperoni and sausage, I enjoyed spinach, mushroom, and garlic.

Pizza Pete's
314 Fifth Avenue

Grabbed a coffee at one of the 8 million Starbuck's in NYC, and headed out to find a subway station. Along the way, we passed Macy's, and the hub-bub was pretty brilliant. Macy's Day Parade preparation was underway and we even caught a glimpse of Snoopy!

Caught the subway to down to Battery Park, where we caught great views and photos of me with the girl of my dreams, the Staten Island Ferry, and the salvaged Sphere sculpture from the World Trade Centers. Apparently, this sculpture was salvaged during recovery operations and placed in the park as a memorial. A never-ending flame burns at the base.

It started to drizzle, so we hot-footed it to the nearest local establishment, The Blarney Stone. Helped ourselves to a Stella Artois and a Guinness for gerg. Of course, shots of Jameson were imminent. Feeling rested and noting the rain stoppage, we headed out again to take the subway to Grand Central Station. Exited the train to catch our next train and stumbled upon Ground Zero.

The Ground Zero memorial currently in place is well done, IMO. No politics there, no talk of terrorists, fear, hate, revenge...Spectacular photos and a timeline commemorate the tragedy without sentimentalizing it. A polite sign reminded visitors to not cheapen the area by buying crap from people. I thought that was a good point, and really, we were only approached by one man selling photographs. We declined. We took a few photos through the fence of the area.

Realizing the urgent need to use the bathroom, and the lack of public bathrooms in NYC, we found another pizza joint, nibbled some breadsticks, and used the facilities. Buon Appetito! This joint was just up the street from St. Paul's Chapel. The cemetery of the Chapel seemed in shocking disrepair until I realized how OLD the place is....Washington visited the chapel after his inauguration in 1789!!

We had hoped to meet up with some friends for dinner at Grand Central Station, so we headed back in that direction via the subway. Grabbed a glass of Pitron at Tequilaville and accidentally left the earrings I bought at Grand Central on the bar. BOO!!! That was the only souvenir we purchased, so I brought nothing home except photos, which are rad. The restaurant kind of reminded me of a Mexican style TGI Fridays, but we had a nice spot at the bar and a great view of a fire on Vanderbilt (not that we saw flames or anything...just fire trucks and NYFD!).

12-14 Vanderbilt Avenue bet. 42nd & 43rd St.
New York, NY
Phone: (212)681-8441

Ran out to check out the NYFD, who were heroic and handsome as usual. Walked around to look for a dinner spot. Our friends never made it for dinner, but we still enjoyed a fabulous dinner a Ammos, a Mediterranean restaurant. We enjoyed veggies in a dazzling vinaigrette and some snappy snapper with capers. Also a broccoli dish with garlic and feta was delish. We were very happy with this joint just around the corner from Grand Central Station.

52 Vanderbilt Ave
New York, NY 10017
(212) 922-9999

Our hope was to meet up with Dave and Dre at Grand Central Station to take the train to Massachusetts. They were delayed and missed the train, so we departed without them. Grabbed some Holla bread from Zaro's Bread Basket at Grand Central, and a couple Amstel Lights, and boarded our train. A two-hour ride took us to a parking lot in Wassaic, where Brian and Suzy left their Volvo wagon for us. We hopped in, put on our disguises (left in the car for us by Suzy), and took our 2 hour drive to North Adams, where friends and beer awaited us. Finally crashed at about 4am, so a 24 day started in MPLS and ended in North Adams by way of NYC.


Thanksgiving in North Adams!

Thursday was a whirlwind of people cooking and preparing tasty bits. Eric, Brian, and Tim worked on the turkey. Tiffany made rolls and a tofurkey, Ashley made a cornbread dressing, Katie made another type of bread n' onion dressing and cranberry sauce, IIII made smashed sweet potatoes, Eric made smashed potatoes with garlic and sharp cheddar cheese, gerg and Dre made apple crisp, Tim and Brian made turkey gravy, I made green bean casserole and brought the holla bread, and Ferris made a mess with sweet potatoes in his hair.

Dinner was consumed, dishes were scrubbed, and the drink began to flow. Not surprisingly a dance party followed. Also, a fuzzy game of Celebrity. I sukked at this game, honestly.

On Friday, gerg and I took a walk around North Adams and checked out some of the local architecture. New England knows how to build gigantic homes!! We really did love the buildings there. Stopped at the Cup and Saucer for sammiches and soda pops. The food was really tasty...lots of locally grown stuff and organic stuff. Definitely veggie friendly. The bagels looked dreamy. Walked over to the local bakery at the Big Y for some fresh bagels (the Cup and Saucer looked low on bagels), and headed back to Brian and Suzy's house.

Friday night was all about candlepin bowling and Coors Light at Valley Park Lanes! Such fun! There are only about a dozen candlepin bowling joints in the US, mostly in MA, truth be told. I even won the second round with a 94. Big ups to me. The Arcade was fun too! Brian and gerg played an amusing round of Dance Dance Revolution. With the tickets we won at the arcade, I got a sweet jelly bracelet and a temporary tattoo of a Archaeopteryx. SWEET.

The rest of the guests departed on Saturday after breakfast, so Brian, Suzy, Ferris, gerg and I spent time lounging and watching movies. Suzy and I took Ferris to the park for fun slide action, and gerg and Brian formed new band with Ferris. Suzy made pumpkin pie for dinner! What a great idea! So we ate pumpkin pie and watched LA Story. A great wrapup to a great trip.

Headed back EARLY Sunday morning to catch the 6:23 train from Wassaic to Grand Central Station. Took a cabride from Grand Central to Newark and flew home to MPLS. Landed around 2pm.

For a more comprehensive set of our photos, click here.

Once again, a BIG UP YOURSELF goes out to Sarah and Reed, Brad, and Paula for taking care of kota-dog while we travelled. *smooches*

November Nights

I started my weekend off on the wrong foot! Too bad for me because, to put it bluntly, I was the MONSTER of my own destiny this weekend. That's not to say I didn't have fun times, cuz I did, and I'm about to review the haps. The bottom line this weekend was the two-way street of trust and honesty. I'd rather know the truth than assume. Honesty is a bigger expectation than I realized. I give a lot of people credit for trying to be as honest as they can be. I know this much: I love my friends and I love gerg.

Enough introspection and onto the events! Friday night gerg and I met up with Sarah and Reed at the Bulldog to discuss arrangements for dog-sitting over the Thanksgiving holiday. Big ups to Brad, Reed and Sarah, and Paula and John for helping us out. We certainly appreciate it. I skipped food and opted for 2 glasses of Stella Artois. The Bulldog has big burgers and tater tots by the basket. Check this place out for drinks and good bar chow. Reed munched a Reuben, Sarah a cheeseburger, and gerg opted for a Caesar salad (with tots, of course).

401 E. Hennepin Avenue
Minneapolis, MN 55414
(612) 378-2855

Late night activity included a lightrail ride downtown to check out the Terry Mullan event at Foundation. I lifted this photo from IIII cuz unfortunately, our camera died, so no photos from us. The event was a blast. Some highlights for me included the girl we affectionately referred to as "hooker dancer" who was all over the dancefloor, pinkpanther's rainbow striped sweater, the VIP area scored by jana, somebody's crunk cup, the striped sisters (one in a tube top), the green lasers, and naturally THE MUSIC. Terry Mullan!!! At one point the fire alarms were sounding, prolly due to too much fog. Gerg pointed it out to me, and at first I assumed they were just strobe lights since the alarm sound was practically identical to the track that was playing.

Saturday morning, gerg and I discussed the camera situation and decided we needed a new one after discovering ours would run about $200 to repair. We headed to National Camera and were pleased with the service and deal we received. We chose the Nikon Coolpix L5. It's small enough to fit in the pocket, but has a 5x zoom. Also, it uses double As rather than lithium, which works for us, since our previous camera used double As. So far, so good. A cool feature of this camera is the vibration reduction, which makes a huge difference in low light.

Our sexy, new camera.

Saturday night, Dave and Dre, pinkpanther and Deedot, and gerg and I settled down at our house for a night of "not spending money". All brought booze and made some food to share, and ended up with feast! I was especially fond of gerg's blueberry and peach crisp. Then played some Beyond Balderdash ,sipped cocktails, and played with our cameras and pinkpanther's new Mac. A brief appearance was made by seville, brandi, and cBass. I was little tipsy by this point, but it seemed they were only at the party for a minute! (Friends! Next time, stay longer! Party harder! We love having guests!)

Sunday was punctuated by a disappointing Packer loss. Managed to catch a rerun of the BET Hip Hop awards, and didn't see any of the performances I was hoping to catch: Snoop, Stevie Wonder, etc. I guess they cut out the stuff I wanted to see for the shortened rerun? Who knows. I did, however, get to see Delicious's mermaid dress! Pretty disappointed by the lack of female representation on the awards. Missy Elliot should never be ignored. Believe dat!

Looking forward to a short work week, and then we board our plane at 6am on Wednesday! I'm gonna wake up in the city that doesn't sleep!!!

Drat. I missed Hip Hop for a New Shower Head!

Wednesday night I stopped to pick up red and yellow bell peppers for surprise fajitas; gerg had chicken fajitas, I had shrimp. I used our red Kitchenaid divided skillet to separate our fajitas fixins. Chicken on one side, shrimp on the other! fantastic pan!

As I walked back to my car with peppers in hand, I distinctly heard "Ho Ho Ho! Merry Christmas!" in a Santa voice. I whipped around to see if Santa was hanging in the Lake Street Rainbow parking lot, or sumpin. I looked all around. No sign of Santa anywhere! Not at Wendy's, not at that Chinese Restaurant, not at Denney's, not at the Schooner (well, it might have been someone INSIDE the the Schooner). Help! I'm hearing Santa voices!

After fajitas, gerg and I headed to Home Depot to search for a new shower surround and fixtures. We had intended to buy tiles, but the price wasn't right for nice tiles, and the surrounds were cooler than we thought they'd be. I love our new shower head! Then we used that closet design program to determine the layout for the bedroom closets. I fell asleep on his shoulder while he worked on the design. Shower should be complete by the time we head to NYC next week.

In a land of indie rokkers, techno freaks, and granola music lovers, I am a rhymes, rap, Hip Hop Countdown girl. Now, that's not to say that there aren't a lot of legitimate hip hop/rap lovers here, cuz there are, but I don't know many of them. I'm the girl who loves the bling, fashion, talk, walk, hair, grillz, and everything that goes along with hip pop culture, even MTV2 style. I'm even interested in Flav's love life. Some "legitimate" rap lovers would call me a fool. Screw them! Anywho, every year I look forward to the variety of hip hop awards shows. I just caught some of the Hip Hop Honors on VH1 on Tuesday. They honored Eazy-E. Bumming cuz I missed the Hip Hop Awards on BET Wednesday night, which kind of bummed me out. I'll catch a rerun, I'm sure cuz I just gotta see the Prince/Stevie Wonder/India.Arie/Yolanda Adams/Chaka Khan, Snoop, and Luda performances.

Thursday night was a hoot and the King & I thai joint on LaSalle. They have tasty food, and a great bar menu. Even mock duck egg rolls for the veggies out there! Liz and I had arranged a date to meet there. Turned out to be a small gathering, as each of us invited others to join without having consulted one another. Needless to say, niether of us were disappointed with the AWXUM turnout of D+D, Deedot and pinkpanther (photo swiped from the Hermans), and Liz and her entourage. DJ Croix (?) laid some smoov beats, jazzy/FUNKy stuff perfect for sipping cocktails and reminiscing about the "old days" when rave parties lasted 4 days, and sleep was a waste of time. Remember when Daft Punk played at Even Furthur in 1996? Nuts!

Go talk about the good times!
King and I Thai
1346 LaSalle Ave
Mpls, MN

PS - Actually, sometimes I still resent having to sleep.

Looking forward to a replay of the Hip Hop Awards and Terry Mullan at Foundation Friday night and another PACKER VICTORY this weekend!

Here's the scoop on the Foundation event.


It's not often that I post links completely unrelated to my life, but this pool is so cool, I just had to share it.

Comfort Food and Whoopee Cushions

This past week was full of crockpot madness! And a ton of laughter! Did you know they made self-inflating Whoopee Cushions?!?! Constant guffawing on Saturday night.

Friday night, we took the first step in the bedroom redo. After much contemplation, we've decided on "a look" and headed downtown to buy new bedding and a rug. Window treatments are in the works, and my dad will be in town soon to help paint and max out our closets. Can't wait to have killer closets!! After shopping, we grabbed some chow at the Minneapolis Chatterbox with cBass and Aimee. My service was crappier than it usually is there. I think they screwed up my order 3 times, along with the bill. Guess the gang didn't have it all together for me. I'll let it slide, cuz they're usually on top of it. Watched some chick play SuperMario Bros for awhile. The joint was 4/5 packed with hipsters playing games and slamming beers, as usual. Check out the Chatterbox for nights filled with sitting in your living room in a public place.

MPLS Chatterbox
2229 E 35th St
Minneapolis, MN 55407
(612) 728-9871

Beat it, and headed to Psycho Suzi's to visit Brad and the gang. Ran into this chic I knew from high school named Molly. Discovered she works at one of our fav hangouts, the Town Talk Diner! Enjoyed some Tiki drinks, along with shots of my fav Tequila, Corralejo, Anejo. They have the Anejo, which I haven't seen in the Twin Cities so far. I'll be back for more, believe dat! Psycho Suzi's has a kickbutt set of tiki drinks which will drive you to drunkenness. They've also got decent chow. I must be from Wisconsin, cuz the first thing that comes to mind is the fried cheese. Yummy!

Psycho Suzi's
2922 Lyndale Ave S
Minneapolis, MN 55408
(612) 821-0101

On Saturday, while we finished battening down the hatches outside to prepare for winter, we made crockpot baked mac n' cheese for a "comfort food party" hosted by one of gerg's colleagues, Jessica. The party was in Northville, maybe 20 miles from here. We did our yard work in the brisk autumn air, cleaned out gutters, raked, burned stuff, covered the AC unit, etc. Showered, grabbed the crock, and headed to the party! Northville was covered by almost 8" of snow!! Who knew the seasons could change in 20 miles?!?! Anywho, the party was fun, and my highlight was receiving a hand-drawn turkey from Jessica's daughter, Bella - she named the turkey Wiga. That's right. Wiga. LOVED IT! She was also a huge fan of one of my favorite toys. The Whoopee Cushion! She set up this great obstacle course where she'd do a front roll, jump on an ottoman, and then land on the chair (which had a Whoopee Cushion on the seat). We laughed at how gross the chair was.

Sunday, we hit the Packer party at the Herkimer. What a blast! We were all about Donald Driver's 191 yards receiving on Sunday! Our server spilled a little beer on gerg and gifted him with a leather cuff bracelet. Very very!! gerg couldn't see keeping it, so he returned it as he paid our tab. Other highlights included Deanna Favre quaffing a huge glass of beer on National TV, the red-haired chick who cheered for the Packers by imitating Gonzo's' long lost sister, and the JELLO SHOTS!! Woo hoo! Thank you, Brett, for not throwing a single fuggin TURNOVER!! gerg was all about you, Brett!

Practically skipped back to the car after the victory over the Vikings. Got home and set up the crockpot for yet another outing. This time, we fixed up some chili cheese dip for Bobbi's birthday party.

While it did its thing, we took a nap to recover from the PACK attack while watching DIY programming; I've been battling a doozie of a headache on and off for a couple of weeks - I think it's related to a pain in my neck/shoulder. It means a little more resting than usual, which isn't bad, but has contributed to me acting like a total baby at times.

Smith's party was a good reunion. Nice to see all the folks out and about on a Sunday night. With Lotus and the Lodahl twins in the house, and a pregnant mom, lots of childtalk ensued. Also, something bad happened to gerg's camera at the party. The flash made a cracking sound, like something shattered, and I repeatedly received an E18 error. BUMMER! We need the camera for our trip to NYC next week!!

Monday night, after walking kota dog, gerg and I headed to St. Paul to the Mann Highland I & II to check out Borat the Movie. Before the movie, we grabbed sups at the St. Paul Chatterbox Pub nearby. It's got a similar menu, with the addition of a breakfast menu, and the same nostalgic vibe as the Minneapolis Chatterbox, except everything was newer and cleaner. Fewer hipsters and more grups (a term I lifted from NYmag) in the crowd. I ordered the fondue from the appetizer menu, but was somewhat disappointed by the more like con queso dip that I received. It's not that it tasted bad, but I expected something more similar to fondue and less like con queso dip. gerg had the chicken quesadilla, which was tasty, as ususal, according to him. Service was great.

St Paul Chatterbox
800 Cleveland Ave S
St Paul, MN 55116
(651) 699-1149

Borat the Movie was hilarious. The whole crowd at the Highland wasn't just laughing, but roaring at Borat. I've been a fan of Sacha Cohen since I first saw a video of Ali G, Innit back in 1999. Borat the Movie is goofy and takes necessary satirical stabs at America's sometimes hypcritical and often ridiculous cultures while being totally offensive.

Highland I&II
760 Cleveland Ave S
St Paul, MN 55116
(651) 698-3085

Iron Fork Review and Other Bits

Okay, I'm not posting my latest in chronological order. I really want to address Iron Fork first (held on Nov. 9, 2006 in Minneapolis). IT WAS FUN! The bad news is that I forgot my camera!!

The Highlights!

Sarah and Reed and I met up at O'Donnovan's for a cocktail before heading to the event at the Grave's Hotel. O'Donnovan's has a great selection of Irish whiskey, I helped myself to a glass of Bushmill's neat. Then Sarah and I headed over to the hotel. They had advance tix, but I couldn't get one. The line was LONG to purchase tickets, but it gave me a chance to check out the lobby of the Graves, which is contemporary and clean. Jeers to the line-butters! What happened to "Minnesota friendly?" (Hey, if you're a line-butter, and you know if you are, you SUKK.) Good news is that I got a ticket. The event was sold out, so I heard from other guests. Tickets at the door were $30, with proceeds going to Second Harvest.

So we all piled in an elevator (couldn't find the stairs), and headed to the 5th floor ballroom. Checked our coats, and walked through the cash bar area to the ball room, where 8 cooking stations were set up in a oval around a table piled with an assortment of fruits, veggies, broths, Amstel light, and meats. "Amstel light?" you ask; they were a major sponsor of the event.

Around the perimeter of the room, guest vendors set up their stations, and handed out gobs of free samples. Some highlights: the Legacy Chocolates samples (99% chocolate truffles!), the folks from the Birchwood with a cheese and cherry chutney appetizer, Ichiban brought 1000s of sushi rolls and enough wasabi to launch a rocket, the Melting Pot people brought a refreshing salad with greens and currants, and Lunds made mini-grilled ham and cheese sammiches with tomato soup. Bottom line: If you left hungry, you were lazy. All the vendors I approached were so friendly and generous with their goodies!

On to the competition! I grabbed a spot early. I parked myself directly in front of the Fugaise cooking area. I hogged that front row position for the entire competition. Throughout the event, I spoke briefly with chef Don Saunders. Such a baby face! Fortunately, Sarah brought me samples to keep my energy flowing during the battle! Directly to the right of the Fugaise prep area was executive chef, Steven Brown, from Restaurant Levain. So, I was in a pretty good position to catch some crucial cooking, along with stellar views of City Pages food critic Dara Moskowitz's sexiness *meow*. (The closest thing I could find to a photo of Dara was an undownloadable pic on The Voice website here). Seth Bixby Daugherty, Executive Chef at Cosmos, briefly introduced the competitors and welcomed the guests, then the revealed the secret ingredient. Lobster!

Don from Fugaise went to town with a parsnip/cream/vanilla puree, which they served with seared lobster tails and a cabbage roll stuffed with sauteed mushrooms, fois gras and lobster knuckle meat. The claws were boiled and served on the top on the cabbage roll with a spicy paprika sauce.

The Winner!!!

Chef Steve from Restaurant Levain prepared a lobster/chorizo/truffle oil dish with shashimi-style beef (couldn't determine the cut), which smelled heavenly, and must have tasted heavenly as well, because he was the big winner of Iron Fork. His look was goofy and fun, tossled salt and pepper hair, tight-rolled chef pants, and chartreuse Crocs. His style was fun to watch. Very methodical and meticulous, but relaxed and cheery. He's the kind of guy you wish would invite you to his house for Thanksgiving, just so you could sip champagne and watch him cook.

The Lowlights: 1) More advance tickets would have been nice. 2) Each cooking station should be labeled with the represented restaurant name and chefs; it was difficult to remember who was at what station. 3) A better sound system for annoucements and on-the-spot interviews; we could barely hear Dara!! 4) Stairs; the jampacked elevators were frightening. 5) The tarragon provided for the chefs was crappy.

Lowlights aside, the event was awesome to watch and attend. I'll definitely be attending next year!


I came home after the Iron Fork event to a basement set up with gerg's drums. Dallas Orbiter was recording him in the basement, as they were all about the reverb from the staircase. I love to watch him play; it was a nice treat. gerg, you are so HAWT.

Also, I came home to a new compound mitre saw in the basement. It has a laser and a florescent light and a very cool transport stand! It was not purchased at that bad manners hardware store; it was purchased at Home Depot. gerg saved the first cut of wood for me and wrote "MARIE" on the block. It's fuggin adorable.

Other highlights from the week:

After voting on Tuesday night, gerg at I hit El Norteno. He had the steak fajitas. I had shrimp rancheros. Apparently, their Horchatas are fanstastic, but we had limonade. The beans and rice were a little bland, but the entrees were tasty. They offer a variety of traditional dishes, like, 8-10 versions of tacos. Definitely family friendly. Definitely not fancy. Atmosphere is bland, so bring interesting company. Come and eat a taco, and then buy a blessed virgin Mary devotional candle from their little shop.

4000 E Lake St
Minneapolis, MN 55406
(612) 722-6888

Wednesday night, I prepared a new crockpot recipe. Check out the recipe and comments here! We visited our friend Brad with the recipe, and then headed down to the Town Talk Diner with my brother, MarkMartin, and our former roomie cBass. MarkMartin (visiting from Oshkosh, Wisconsin) tried out the Kitchen Sink burger, cBass had the grilled cheese. gerg and I shared some fried cheese curds and drank booze. I tried an adult malt concocted with pumpkin pie flavored ice cream, honey, and brandy. gerg stuck to the Jameson, as usual.

Looking forward to heading to a Comfort Food party tomorrow and another sort of party on Sunday. Also, raking leaves and cleaning gutters are in our future.

One more bit: today I received the first proof for my forthcoming poetry book, called Fresh Breath. We should be able to send the complete design to the publisher by December! Woohoo!!!

Weekend highlights that bleed into Monday


Saturday was the big moving day for former roomie, cBass. Kind of sad to see him go, but his new apartment in South Minneapolis is great. Plus, he's got a killer organ there - an old Hammond in mint condition. cBass was a nice roomie. Doesn't he look nice? Anywho, after walking to the Birchwood Cafe for coffees and gigantic early morning treats (I had an apple/date bar that set my head spinnin'), Dan, seville, gerg, cBass, and I moved all of cBass's stuff from our place in one trip. Not bad! (I don't think I need to mention how AWXUM the Birchwood is, what with all the good press they've received. Still, in case you haven't noticed, the Seward Neighborhood is LOVING this little cafe.)

After the big move and a PBR, around 4, gerg and I headed to Chipotle, where I sampled my first burrito from there. I liked it better than Burrito Loco. Might have been the guacamole or maybe the corn salsa. Just something about it tasted better. Sorry seville, I know it's your fav! Saturday night we were homebodies, enjoying a full moon evening, playing in the yard with a leafblower and a firepit, moving furniture around, smooching! I SO should have taken photos of the firepit. It was like a tornado of fire and brimstone.

On Sunday, we headed to the Herkimer with most of the gang for the Packer game. The Packers were a total disappointment, but the veggie burger was tasty, except it didn't come with mustard! What gives? Check out the Herkimer if you're into the Packers. They have TVs all over the place, so you don't miss plays, even if you step outside. They have a scaled-down Packer menu, and lots of beers brewed on location, veggie burgers and baked pretzels for the veggies out there. Next Sunday, they're hosting an event for the Vikings/Packers battle. Sounds like it will be a lil' bit of tailgating at Lambeau in MPLS.

After the big disappointment, we were off to Kowalski's, where we sampled some of their Cilantro Dip. Try it. Love it. Seriously, even if you usually think cilatro is overbearing and nasty, try this dip. Also, the cranberry walnut cheese ball should not be overlooked, nor should the continued abundance of Honeycrisps!

Sorted through my old tapes on Sunday after letting them dry out from the Hold the Water Please flood. Found some classics: Paul Johnson (I Need Another Plan), James Christian, Boo Williams...oh man, I loved raving! Even some old garage band tapes: Dazy Skulz and HMMC. We listened to my "Hits from 1996" and danced.

After walking Kota Dog, on Monday night gerg and I headed to Memory Lanes! Punk Rock Bowling on Monday nights is totally FUN! $2 tallboys of PBR and $2.50 shots of Jameson will totally kill the Monday blues! Plus, 3-4 bands every week, and they set up right over the lanes so you knock roll while you ROKK OUT. We tried some grub at the attached Flashback Cafe. Gerg liked his burger, and the onion rings were HUGE! They serve sammiches, pizza, appetizers, gourment popcorn, and even a few "dinners" (walley, shrimp, pork chops). For veg-heads, there are veggie burgers, pizza, and grilled cheese. Vegans might struggle at this joint.

Memory Lanes
2520 26th Ave S
Minneapolis, MN 55406
(612) 721-6211

We bowled 2 games and gerg dominated. The round of Jameson was on me! - $5 for two shots! We left before the rokk started cuz I had a Flickr lesson scheduled with gerg and he wanted to catch Kill Bill 2, since he hadn't seen it.

Birthdays, anniversaries, and headphones! Oh my!

Three cheers for the gorgeous weather in Minneapolis this weekend. I'd like to thank Ma Nature for that! Big up yerself, ma!

gerg and I celebrated ourselves this weekend with a grand outing.

First, we headed into St. Paul, without a destination for food, but stopped at a joint called the Glockenspiel Restaurant. The Old World charm of this place was as welcoming as the bartender, who was pleased to host our lunchtime date. The menu was packed full of all kinds of pork and beef dishes that I couldn't pronounce. I noted one (of two) vegetarian items on the menu: Spargelbread. It was a hug hunk of toast topped with asparagus, and a Swiss-cheese sauce with tomatoes, red onions, and other veggies in a vinaigrette. Sounds peculiar, tastes spectacular. gerg ordered his FIRST EVER Reuben sandwich and he loved it! We each sampled an adorable lil' mug of Applekorn for dessert. Our server is a star in St. Paul's hit show, We Gotta Bingo at the Lowry Theatre. We enjoyed sitting in the sunny spot at the front of the restaurant, but were busted for smooching there by our server.

605 Seventh St W
St Paul, MN 55102-3043
(651) 292-9421

After lunch, we hit a Starbuck's that was conveniently located next to the neighborhood hardware store. gerg's been looking for a portable compound mitre saw. One of the gentlemen working the showroom showed me the bad side of his manners, so gerg didn't buy the saw he liked. We'll go back and buy it from someone polite.

I was slightly soured by the hardware store experience, and even got teary eyed, but gerg (in his typical fashion) cheered me right up by steering the truck towards the Cathedral of St. Paul. We walked in as the Minnesota Orchestra was wrapping up an afternoon rehearsal. We witnessed a quick tete-a-tete between Osmo Vanaska and a first chair violinist. Then, we were lucky enough to witness a lovely violin solo in the cathedral. Simply gorgeous. Check out the Cathedral. Tours are available, or you can just walk around if you show up at the right time. We found a video booth, where we took our official anniversary photo.

After that magical experience I was definitely more chipper, and we bopped over to the St. Paul Curling Club . A nice lady with a stressed out arch in her left foot gave me the skinny on curling. gerg filled in the gaps with what he knows from subbing last year. Seems like a fun past time. I'm gonna give it a go this year, if I get the chance, by acting as a sub for the team at gerg's office.

The curling club was fun, but Keegan's was even more fun! The crew assembled there to surprise Dre for her 28th birthday - happy b-day Dre-Dre! I sampled two jager bombs and some kind of tasty beer (not stout). I had fun photographing friends' excellent shoes. They had some great Happy Hour specials there, as far as beer and fried foods go. We didn't eat, but some others did. I heard Deedot say the fish was good. Plus, some babes were walking around with free Jameson (tainted with white soda pop). I forced myself to only taste the Jameson. By this point, gerg and I were truly enjoying our anniversary outing. Thanks to those who noted our anniversary!

16 University Ave NE
Minneapolis, MN 55413
(612) 252-0880

The icing on the cake! gerg and I headed to Origami for a romantic sushi dinner. Origami was the first place we visited for a date in Minneapolis. It is a romantic spot for us. We had some Yo Yo Maki rolls, a specialty of the sushi chef at origami. SO GOOD!! Of course, I had the Miso soup, and we tried the vegetable tempura (the squash was awxum). gerg sipped green tea (which was smart of him). I ordered a golden haze which was a combination of sake and Grand Marnier. Not as smart of a beverage choice as gerg's, but definitely TASTY. We love this place. I NEED to start taking gerg's libation recommendations seriously.

30 N 1st St
Minneapolis, MN 55401
(612) 333-8430

Unfortunately, the golden haze was enough for me, and I started acting "goofy", so I cut our evening short (at 11:30pm). We had an additional plan for more fun out with friends, but that fun can be had another time. It was a great day, and gerg was a great date.

This week:
Looking forward to attending Minneapolis' Iron Fork with Reed and Sarah on Thursday. 8 chefs, 3 judges, 1 secret ingredient!

Also looking forward to the Packer/Viking event at the Herkimer next Sunday.

Herkimer Pub & Brewery
2922 Lyndale Ave S
Minneapolis, MN 55408
Em: info@theherkimer.com
Ph: (612) 821-0101

Do you know what today is?

One year ago, I was sitting at my desk in Oshkosh when a bouquet arrived at my desk. The card read, "Will you be my girl friend? from gerg" Obviously, I said, "hell yeah!" Today I received another bouquet, and the card reads, "Happy anniversary! Will you be my girlfriend again? Love, gerg bot." Yes, gerg. I love being your girlfriend and living in your neck of the non-woods. Happy Anniversary, gerg! Let's stay together! *smooch*

Last night we performed our weekly hair removal ritual. It's not what you think. Lakota is a fuzz demon, and so, we must battle the hair that attacks our house. The process is layered. First, we sweep. Next, vacuum or mop. Next, use a canister vac to get the corners. Next, use the Dirt Devil on the furniture (even though he's not allowed on the furniture, his hair magically appears there). Finally, we dry AND wet Swiffer to collect the rest. Now, most of you know I'm goofy about cleaning (as in, I love a clean house). The tiered levels devoted to hair eradication were developed by gerg, and seem to do the trick.

After our weekly fuzz bust, we headed to Sweet Lorraine's. Greasy Spoon, good french fries, don't even think about trying to look for fancy stuff. Just come here for 2 eggs and toast for $2.95. Also, they have American-style Mexican food. And big plates of nachos.

Sweet Lorraine's
2403 E 38th St
Minneapolis, MN 55406
(612) 728-0426
I'm not surprised that I couldn't find an url or an online pic. I did find a couple of reviews though.

Liz bopped over to work with gerg and I on her film project. She needed robot noises, so we headed down to Love Field , and made some noise. cBass was solicited for a robot-like sound track, which he accomplished toute suite. We drank red wine during the process.