Friday, January 30, 2009

Holy Moly

Last night we put the Veggiesveggiesveggies to good use! Leslie, her friend Charlotte and I made a feast:
  • mizuna salad with pomegranate seeds and roasted purple cauliflower
  • roasted tiny potatoes and sweet potatoes with rosemary
  • sauteed kale with leeks and tarragon
  • roasted asparagus with balsamic vinegar and jarlsberg
  • mango- and ginger-glazed tempeh and rice
It was damned delicious.

Thursday, January 29, 2009


Tuesday was Veggielivery Day, a twice-monthly day of joy. But this Veggielivery Day was overshadowed by yesterday, which became VeggieScavenging Day. Several suppliers had come to woo the cafe in my building, and they left behind their produce, which we descended on like flies on cowpies.

That may not sound appropriately appetizing, but holy crap the selection. I came home with piles of the expected (asparagus, kale, oranges, lemons, beets) and the unexpected (fresh garbanzo beans, tokyo turnips, crazy lettuce and braising greens...) I was definitely the only girl on the shuttle riding next to a heaping box of fragrant fruitage.

Behold, my bounty:
Back row, left to right: beets, tokyo turnips, fennel, yellow carrots, asparagus, a leek, kale, teeny cauliflower, purple cauliflower, chayote squash, big ole radish, and sweet potatoes.
Second row, left to right: some kind of red (endive-esque) lettuce, fresh ginger, kumquats, quince, blood orange, and chayote squash.
Front row, i.e. heaped in piles: snap peas, brussel sprouts, fresh garbanzos, tiny potatoes, and herbs (mostly off-screen: rosemary, lavender, tarragon, dill).


My President is a Tech Geek

Yesterday I went to a talk by a member Obama's technology transition team. It was totally fascinating for a number of reasons, many of which are discussed in this video.

The Campaign
Apparently, in Silicon Valley, Hilary had the support of almost all the telecom companies, while Obama had the internet companies. What this means is that, while the two might not have really differed on the issues, their advisors did. Now that Obama is in the White House, the internet companies have a bit of a leg up (though the telecoms did throw their support to him after the primaries), and, as such, his technology initiatives are more forward-looking (so says I, Silicon Valley-ite that I now am). At the very least, you'll likely hear more about the intertubes than the telecomwires.

The Message
The Obama administration is really into cloud-based computing, which presents exciting possibilities - though I'm not sure how it will square with security concerns. Obama plans to name both a CIO and a CTO. The CIO will be in charge of internal IT systems for the government, while the CTO sounds like it will be more like the surgeon general - an evangelist for his or her area of expertise. The CTO will develop pilot projects and push the public technology agenda. This sounds like a freaking awesome job.

The Intended Result
The goals of moving into the cloud: to get citizens more involved in decision making, to get info out onto the web proactively (i.e. before a citizen has to file to make a report public), to be more efficient, and to promote cross-agency work. The efficiency issue alone would be a huge task - right now the federal government spends 70 billion dollars a year on IT, and it buys us outdated software and inadequate computing power. It's absolutely ridiculous.

On the proactive provision of public information: this was one of the first items that Obama tackled - on the 21st, no less.

To get more people involved in government decisions, the Obama administration plans to use technology to facilitate policy discussions. Por ejemplo: The Citizen's Briefing Book. Apparently the pro-pot lobby got super involved in this, causing the results to show that marijuana legalization is America's #1 priority. Not exactly representative, and item #2 in my case against direct democracy (item #1 being California and its knee-jerk propositions). 

All in all, pretty damn impressive.

Oh happy day!

Mark your calendars and lock up your chardonnay, folks: Betty (aka Grilled Cheese) Brennan is visiting March 12-16. She wants to shop, eat, drink, and "do girly things". Mike, luckily, is out of town.

You probably think this photo is cute, right? But a little pose-y? We are actually drunk, and holding each other up because we are no longer capable of remaining upright unassisted.

So there you have it. I am really excited about her visit. Anyone else want to partake of the Betty festivities?

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Hell yeah

Three Wellesley Alumnae Tapped for Obama Administration
Though I do wish they had chosen a different verb than "tapped".

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Things that make you say Hmmm

So yesterday was, obviously, Inauguration Day. And that was amazing, of course. But the best part was that at about 2 p.m., Mike and I took a coffee break at Mojo. We sat in the sunny backyard, sipped our beverages, and split a mozzarella sandwich. Then we popped down to Hayes Valley (where we never go, because it is just too precious for Mike) because I had heard that Paulette Macarons was opening that very day.

I realize there are many places that sell macarons, and that macarons are on the verge of being trendy; the next cupcake, if you will (and Teppi will). But they are still adorable, and they are still delicious. And Paulette Macarons sells nothing but.

We got home just in time for me to remember that I had a personal training session. Rad. It turned out to be a fitness assessment - largely measurements and stretching - so I didn't puke up my macarons. I did, however, learn that I am made up of way too much fat for my taste, and that I am less flexible than the vast majority of humanity. Sad, but good motivation for a workout. Right? Right.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Working from home is awesome

Especially when Mike works from home too. I'm on a call, he's grabbing his head like something's wrong, I put myself on mute, he's just sent an email to more than 300,000 people. And it went just fine. But I can understand why that would be stressful.

And then! I get the email in my inbox. It's really pretty satisfying.

San Francisco agrees with me

From Flickr:


Friday, January 16, 2009

Right now

There is a man in my apartment, steam cleaning my carpets. 99% of the stains are from red wine. The other 1% is from one time when I didn't take off my boots after hiking. Woops.

Anyway, how much of a grownup am I? All paying someone to do something that I could conceivably do myself. What's next, a maid?

Also, Ezzie is very stealthily freaking out. And you thought the vacuum was bad, furball.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Overshare from a publisher

"It is so cold here in Cincinnati, I'm menopausal, and I'm not even liking it."

Ah, good memories of my mom taking off her shirt at dinner and standing in front of an oscillating fan.

Uh Oh

US Airways Jet Crashes Into Hudson River. "A US Airways plane is half-submerged in the Hudson River, after the pilot reported engine trouble. All 146 passengers and 5 crew members were reported to have survived."

Is it weird that I am a little jealous they got to use the slides?

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Overheard in Walgreen's...

"You are a sexual tyrannosaurus."

Monday, January 12, 2009

And a happy Monday to you too

Friday night we went out for scorpion bowls. Scorpion bowling is like skydiving - you know there is serious danger involved, but you hope that you'll have enough fun to make it worth it. And that you won't die.

Well, Mike almost did. Ok, not really, but his burgeoning cold was not helped by an evening of fruity bowls of hard liquor. So Saturday we were lazy. But! But! We finished the last season of The Wire. It was a sad day. We miss Wallace and Stringer Bell and Bodie and Carver and Bunk and Snoop and Gus and Cutty and Omar, especially Omar. That show is freaking awesome.

So we are taking suggestions for what else to Netflix.  

Yesterday we did some Wiretap stuff, then went to Ocean Beach. It was 65 and sunny, and I was a happy happy lady. We stayed for the sunset, which would have been very romantic if I hadn't been nervous that I had sat in fresh seagull crap.

I hadn't.

Identity theft!

Someone charged $59.99 to my credit card back in December - my card company picked up on it right away as fraudulent. I called the number listed on my statement, and they told me that my name and address had been used, and the kindly thief had even listed me as a Doctor.

And what was the charge for? Online Booty 


Sunday, January 11, 2009


This website uses Google Maps to pinpoint the homes of Prop 8 supporters. It's public information, and I have no love for those who worked to bring down gay marriage, but this makes me uneasy. What's the purpose? Education or intimidation?

Saturday, January 10, 2009

By the Transbay Bus Terminal

Right after college, Cait had a grant to study public art. She started pointing out sculpture gardens, painted overpasses, etc. So now I notice things like this:
I appreciate the attempt to prettify a bus station.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Not really my style

But I know this will get some of you meat eaters salivating. From one of the chefs at work:

"Hello there foodies. Please join us next week for a Head to Tail menu. We have acquired an entire cow from the fine folks at Humbolt County Grass Fed Beef. All week we will showcase a different cut of beef. Other cafes will be offering some of the beef on their menus next week as well. We will be brining, curing, smoking, and "molecularizing" some cuts for your future enjoyment. Save a carrot and eat some locally raised grass fed and finished beef!"

No sir, they do not mess around. 

Have I told you lately... much I love San Francisco?


But I really really do. Validation via the NY Times here.


I'm working out of the San Francisco office today. I was going to work from home, but I have a meeting to videoconference into. So here I am! 

Also on this VC are three offices around the world. A beautiful aspect of the Goog: right now I am having snarky chats with colleagues in two other locations about the current speaker. I can see them trying not to laugh on the VC. 

I grabbed a little office right on the Bay Bridge side of the building - the views are amazing. I'll upload some photos later. 

Huzzah for working from a "remote" location 3 miles from my house!

UPDATE: Mike visited for lunch, and boy did we avail ourselves of the spread. They even have a warmer for the chocolate chip cookies! We both got to go down the slide between floors, which made my day.

As promised, here's the view from the Embarcadero side of the building. I am pleased.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Hello, Brain

We relaxed in Houston, to a certain extent - I really like Mike's family, but you can only chill out so much when you are trying to buff your rough edges for your boyfriend's loved ones. Being a guest is a fabulous chance to get onto other people's schedules, though, and we were lucky that Mike's family is laid back. When we got back to SF, Caitlin was already in town and so became our roomie for the rest of our break.

I managed to get violently ill on the 31st, and had to forgo all New Year's celebrations. Mike joined me on the couch to watch movies, instead of, you know, partying with the majority of humanity.

Despite its rather shitty (if you only knew) beginning, 2009 is shaping up a-ok. We spent the last week sleeping in, walking and bike riding around the Bay Area, and catching up with peoples. 

On Friday Caitlin and I wanted to cook, and we wound up having 10 people over for an impromptu dinner party. Here are the raw materials of excellence.

Right? And we had a fabulous time, without even playing Celebrity! Miraculous. Now I am back at work, trying to get my head back in the game. And planning all the trips I have to take for the next year. At least one a month, it looks like. Boston, Chicago, here's looking at you!

The last few weeks in pictures

Monday, January 5, 2009

Cheese Cupid

Yessssssssssssssssss. A website that matches your adult beverage with the proper cheese. Limited selection of both booze and cheese, but still - great idea.

Back to work

Good break, but crazy. I need a real vacation now - 13 vacay days accrued, not one day used since I started at the Goog.

Steamboat, here I come.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Aw yeah

Thank you, New York Times: it doesn't get much better than this article.

I love it!