I Want To Be Mick Jones & A Dog Who Loves Pancakes


I had a hard time winding down last night. Yesterday was Mick Jones's birthday and I was in a very celebratory-of-Mick-Jones kind of headspace, which included allowing myself an indulgently long session of looking at Mick Jones pictures on the internet after waking up yesterday morning. I really hit the jackpot with this photo of Mick looking annoyed in front of a roller coaster:

After all that I got up and did my normal Sunday things, like going running and then eating some eggs and a cinnamon raisin bagel while reading the New York Times in the big chair in the living room, sitting sideways with my feet dangling over the edge (my fave Sunday-paper-reading posish). In the evening I went to Hotel Cafe for Tongue & Groove, where my friend Sarah Tomlinson read a really killer short story called "Andy Godmother" that I'm psyched to plug the hell out of once it's published. Another cool thing about Hotel Cafe was the bartender was the dude who turned me on to spam fried rice at Button Mash. I tried to think of a chill way to tell him "Hey I wrote a blog post where I called you a prince and one of the two Great Dans of My Life" - but I couldn't think of anything. Next time, maybe.

After Hotel Cafe, because I'm myself, I went to visit David Bowie's star and the Beatles' stars on the Walk of Fame. The Beatles' stars are all in a little row outside Capitol Records; the order goes: John, George, Paul, Ringo. Right now I'm in a place of loving the Beatles so much but in a low-pressure-y way where I don't feel compelled to make myself intricately themed Beatles playlists and then force the songs into coloring my world so that I can have all these grand revelations about the universe and life and love. I just really like the Beatles! The Beatles are just really cool. On Saturday night my friends and I went to El Chavo where there's this new dumb mural that I love, despite the fact that it's a ripoff of LJ's idea for us to open a Beatles-themed Mexican restaurant called "The Burreatles":

Anyway, many hours after the Walk of Fame, I retired to the bedroom and watched a lot of Clash things on my laptop - mostly the part in The Future Is Unwritten where Mick Jones dances goofily in a hallway in 1981 or something, and in a voiceover someone says how Mick's an idealist who's incapable of living in the real world. I watched that part like 500 times. It made me happy and hyper and I didn't feel like sleeping, though the hour had grown quite late. So I watched more Clash stuff and listened to the Clash and checked Instagram and even hit the goddamn explore button, of all things. Which turned out to be a brilliant move, 'cause that's how I found the best Instagram in the world. The account name is ortensia10 and it's about an apricot toy poodle who lives in Japan. I'm pretty sure the poodle's name is Mina, but I can't be entirely sure since everything's in Japanese. A major theme of Mina's Instagram is "Mina sitting at the head of table with a magnificent meal/dish/dessert laid out before her":


Thing of the Week: Walking To &/Or From Work, A Song + A Dress + Anthony's Shirt

LJ'S THING OF THE WEEK: Walking To &/Or From Work

It’s a few minutes past twelve on Wednesday night, and I don’t mean Thursday morning, even though Thursday morning is what I actually mean. But I just don’t buy that, that a new day starts when the clock turns to midnight. The new day starts when you wake up tomorrow morning. As far as I’m concerned, it’s still June 15th.
        I’m drunk on Verdejo, which, I’ve decided, is the best kind of drunk for me to be. Not on Verdejo, necessarily, but on a Spanish white for sure, made from some obscure varietal like Treixadura or Macabeo or Xarel-lo that nobody has ever heard of except for me, like twenty-five Spanish wine producers, and a handful of other weird nerds.
        I drank Verdejo in Islington tonight, at the Draper’s Arms, which is my favourite pub in London, I guess, or more likely isn’t, but sometimes is. Pubs in London are like Beatles songs— they all fulfil their specific function when you need them to. At the Draper’s Arms, I ate a piece of gold fish for no reason, I wasn’t hungry, but I saw someone else eat the gold fish and then I wanted it, it seemed stupid not to eat it, so I did. I shook Monica’s hand and told her I was going to move to Barcelona in January, because Monica told me to, and the last time I took Monica’s advice it turned out to be the best piece of advice anyone’s ever given me, which was to move the fuck out of the apartment I was living in with my ex-boyfriend, like, tomorrow. I did that, and that’s why my life ended up being what it became: a life I can’t deal with leaving. The life which I just shook hands on agreeing to leave.
        I was drunk and walked to Canonbury, the Overground station I used to walk to every morning, which wasn’t the morning then, it was the afternoon, because those were the hours I kept. The train came fast, and I took it to New Cross, which is not so close to where I live, but it’s close to where I work. I was happy to inconvenience myself, since I couldn’t bear the thought of making it through an entire day without getting to walk that walk.
        That walk is the number one thing that’s making me want to keep on living in London, and if Monica had never told me to move the fuck out of my old apartment I never would’ve gotten to know it. I wondered about what the Barcelona equivalent of that walk would be, and then I thought back to Toronto, about the walk from Palmerston Boulevard to Bloor Street station, and then I stopped thinking about any of it, because I was walking to New Cross to Brockley, and I was just so fucking stoked to be walking from New Cross to Brockley, drunk on Verdejo and listening to all my favourite rock & roll songs; I didn’t have to think about anything. I just was

1. Home to Work 

Walking to work doesn’t start when I start walking to work, it starts when I wake up in the morning, when I lie in my bed and take a moment to remember whether or not I got drunk the night before. If I didn’t, I’m sad for a second, because it means my phone’s probably not popping off. I look at my phone and am usually proved right. My phone is boring and I’m bored of it. But if I did get drunk the night before, I get to have my cool moment of remembering all the cool things that happened, and then check out my phone to explore all the cool ramifications of all the cool text messages I sent, and all the cool Tweets I wrote. It’s amazingly exciting for me.
        I make my coffee and my peanut butter, and I plan out my outfit, and then I put it on. Sometimes my hair looks great, but usually it looks bad. I walk out my front door, and listen to a song. The song I love the most that morning dictates what my vibe will be for the rest of the day. I start Tweeting inanely, and then I put my phone on airplane mode, so I can be rewarded for having walked to work when I arrive at work and take my phone off airplane mode and watch all the favs roll in. There are two bursts of favs every morning, one from all the London people at 9:30, and then again at 1:00, when all the Toronto and New York people wake up.
       The best song to listen to on my walk to work is My Generation by the Who It’s easy, it’s simple; it makes its point fast, and hard, and loud. It gets me hype really fast; I like to peak early, when I’m walking past the graveyard, past the KFC ad in the bus stop that I always want to Tweet is the best skinny mirror in all of London, but I never do, because it’s too niche. I don’t relate to any of the words in My Generation, I only like the parts when he stammers at the front of the sentences. Some information I know is that that sound is meant to mimic the delivery of a person high on amphetamines, who is so high on amphetamines that his or her teeth are chattering. That is very cool information to me.
        The Seeker by the Who is also a good morning song, and A Quick One by the Who can also be effective, though only when I do this thing where I bookend the first leg of my home-to-work walk and the last leg of my work-to-home walk with it, so I can think about who I was that morning when I listened to it, and then reflect on all the ways I’ve grown as a person over the course of the day.
        Mostly, the mornings are for Bob Dylan, because Bob Dylan songs always sound very fresh to me, just like the morning air. Subterranean Homesick Blues is always a safe bet, as are any of the Bob Dylan songs I designate as being “party" Bob Dylan. Blonde on Blonde’s a really “party” Bob Dylan album: Obviously Five Believers, Most Likely You’ll Go Your Way, Absolutely Sweet Marie. The one where he sings that he'd like to give Brother Bill his great thrill. The morning's when I make all my favourite “Bob Dylan inside jokes” to myself; the one I’m most amused by is when Bob Dylan sings “When you’re lost in the rain, in Juarez, and it’s Eastertime too,” and I say, “Really, Bob? And it’s Eastertime? On top of everything?”— it’s not a very funny joke.
        The past couple days, though, the Rolling Stones have been speaking to the morning. Yesterday, I got caught in a thunderstorm while wearing skin-tight trousers and a leopard-print button-up. I was wearing Beatle boots after a month of wearing flats, and I felt uneasy in them, tentative, like a baby giraffe wobbling on its twigs of legs. But then Stray Cat Blues came on, and I settled into my strut. This morning I was morose, listened to Ruby Tuesday twice and felt it but was too stupid to figure out that my today vibe was “Don’t question why she needs to be so free”/”When you change with every new day”/”Dying all the time” all along, a missed opportunity for which I have no one to blame but myself. And then I listened to She Smiled Sweetly, and walked past the gas station and thought about the time I came to Brockley to hang out with Livia last summer, on that one really hot day last summer, and it was the first day I’d ever worn my glasses and they felt foreign on my face. I walked past that Esso station and had no idea where I was, had no idea that a year later that Esso station would become as big a part of me as my glasses would too.
        She Smiled Sweetly had never sounded so beautiful; it was the colour blue, a greyish-blue that you could see through. Mick Jagger sang “And feeling good, most all of the time”— he sings the word time in a lower register than is naturally comfortable for him, and pronounces the vowel very strangely.
        I pretended that that word was the ocean, and drowned myself inside of it. In a positive way.

2. Work To Home

Either I am walking home from work or I am walking home drunk from whatever I ended up doing after work. But I'm not going to write about the drunk times, because it’s June 16th now, and on June 16th terrible things happened to the world, and it no longer feels relevant to write about the time I drunk-listened to the Who sing Cello cello cello cello cello cello cello cello etc etc etc You are forgiven you are forgiven you are forgiven you are forgiven etc and jumped up into the air and punched it when the guitars got bigger. That act was performed as a tribute to the world being a beautiful place. I feel stupid, now, for feeling like that ever.
        So I’m not drunk, I’m never drunk. I’m tired. I am acutely aware of the way the muscles inside my legs are moving. They remind me of the inside of a clock.
       All the streets look different when I’m walking from instead of to. There are certain street corners from morning and night that it took me weeks of walking to realize were the same one. In the night my feet feel damp in my shoes because water splashes on my shoes all day. I feel dirty, I need to wash myself. There is always a little container of food in my bag that I have taped up with masking tape. I’m worried that the food is going to spill inside my bag and mix up with the pre-existing mess of tobacco flakes, gum wrappers, and 75,000 quarter-full bottles of Highland Springs sparkling water. When I get home I’m going to eat the food and then exercise for twenty minutes and then it will be the actual night.
        The sound of songs sounding so good. The Rolling Stones have been speaking to the evening, too. Psychedelic Rolling Stones, mostly; that’s the vibe. Child of the Moon & Dandelion, 2000 Man, Citadel, She’s A Rainbow. I recently re-read a thing I wrote about She’s A Rainbow three years ago in which I trash-talked a thing I’d written about She’s A Rainbow four years before that. Seven years ago, I walked down College Street in the summertime and bought myself a waffle cone of one scoop raspberry and one scoop white chocolate gelato, walked down the street eating it and listening to She’s A Rainbow at the same time, and I felt like if 1967 Mick Jagger had seen me doing it, he would’ve written She’s A Rainbow about me, which bothered me. I felt demeaned by Mick Jagger, unimpressed by his having nothing better to say about the woman he loves than that that she wears clothes which are different colours and combs her hair. Three years later, I decided that I actually loved the line about the girl combing her hair. I thought it represented a very pure and true style of love: when you love somebody so hard and so much that even the dullest, simplest, most mundane things they do seem spectacular. When you’re so taken with someone that you can sit around watching them check their Weather app or scratch their elbow, and it’s the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen.
        I’ve never felt like that about a person in my life. Boring shit is boring, whether you love a person or not. Today I think the lyrics to She’s A Rainbow are fine, not really worth reading into, a series of mostly vacant sentences that do a great job of communicating a thing, which is exuberance, or joy, the zeitgeist of a time. It’s not a song about a girl, it’s a song about what songs sounded like in 1967. It sounds like being trapped inside a music box. It traps me inside myself, away from the world, and inside my head it’s always 1967. I wish it really was. I want to put a flower in a gun. 
       On the day we found out about Orlando, there was a leak at my work and we had to close down one side of the restaurant. It smelled really bad in the restaurant. Everyone was crying, I was crying. I went outside and told everybody “Fifty people died” and my boss said “I thought it was twenty” and I said “It’s fifty now.” I locked myself in the bathroom and cried hard. I wanted what happened not to have happened and felt selfish and babyish about the way in which I wanted it. I stopped crying, because you can’t cry forever. I sat on a bench with my boss’s three-year-old daughter and we watched a cartoon music video for the song B-I-N-G-O & his Bingo was his name-o together and I sang along to Bingo. The little girl put her hand in mine and it reminded me of a tooth, it was so tiny and light. I picked her up and ran around holding her and spun her around in circles. I was exploiting her, nourishing myself with her exuberant vibes.
        At the end of the day I had dirt all over my hands from cleaning out the extractor fans or whatever they’re called, and she sprayed the cleaning spray on my hands to wash them off. The cook asked me why I was letting her spray that spray on my hands, it’s bad for your skin, she said, and I said I didn’t care, because I didn’t. I hugged everyone and helped with the leak as much as I could and felt less like shit about things. It feels good to do nice things for people you care about. I thought, “Maybe this is enough, maybe I am doing enough, maybe I can’t do any more than this, maybe this— perceiving every moment of my life as an opportunity to give a gift to the world— is actually something.”
        It isn't. I don’t know how to say any eloquent or moving things about how fucked up the world is. All I can ever think to say is There’s nothing easier to do than LOVE but it comes off so naïve, which checks out, because I am naïve. I’m an idiot, like Ringo, who still always tweets about peace and love. I’m stuck inside the year 1967 in my head. I was born in 1967, and I’ll die in 1967.
        That night I walked home listening to She’s A Rainbow and it worked: just like hanging out with a three-year-old, or drinking a glass of Verdejo. Like kissing, like eating, like the summer, like the sun. Some people know how to write words that mean something real and other people know how to write words that mean something else. The entire world is crashing down in front of me, but if there is beauty to be found, I will find it.

LIZ'S THING OF THE WEEK: A Song, My Dress, Anthony's Shirt

Here are my three things of the week:


I accidentally downloaded this song very late on Saturday night - I’d gone to see Lloyd Cole at Largo, and he opened with a very sweet cover of “Sometimes It Snows In April,” and after the show I wanted to hear every jangly and heartbreaking song that was ever written. So I got myself a bunch of Posies songs, and their version of “What the World Needs Now Is Love” sneaked in there, which was a nice surprise. Then on Sunday I woke up to the news and decided to ignore whatever I’d planned on doing that day and just go to the beach. In the car I listened to “What the World Needs Now Is Love” lots of times and then I listened to it on the beach and then I listened to it on the pier. I talked to Emily Richmond on the phone and read the New York Times at Patrick’s Roadhouse, where I had a veggie omelet and a Diet Coke and toast with strawberry jam. Mostly I just felt like walking around forever, which is generally how I always feel, so when I got back to Echo Park that night I walked around more and listened to the Posies + Burt Bacharach and ate a Cherry Garcia pop. And then at home I watched the last 54 seconds of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Best Score acceptance speech like 50 times and listened to “What the World Needs Now Is Love” once or twice more, on my earbuds in my room.

My favorite is the last minute and a half, where the song turns into a snappy little party full of flowers and fireworks and then gets all dreamy again, and then Burt Bacharach brings the house down with that last line. It's such a cool thing to be totally sappy but also unequivocally true in whatever you're saying. Let's have everything be sappy and cornball and beautifully mushy forever.


This is my new dress. I got it at Hutch, which is next to the Scoops in East Hollywood and maybe ties with Gotta Have It for my favorite vintage store in L.A. Everything’s under $30 and feels like it belonged to some groovy librarian from 1978. I had the upstairs all to myself and when I tried on my dress “Nothin in This World Can Stop Me Worryin ‘bout That Girl” came on the radio, and I knew I had to buy it: all new dresses should be about 
“Nothin in This World Can Stop Me Worryin ‘bout That Girl” in one way or another. I also got a beach bag that says “Victoria, B.C.” in beautiful grandmotherly cursive, because Wolf Parade are from British Columbia. And as I was paying the song on the radio changed to “Vincent” by Car Seat Headrest, and then later on I bought that too. Now I listen to it all the time, when I’m not listening to the Posies + Burt Bacharach or to Divine Fits’ hot cover of “You Got Lucky” by Tom Petty. My favorite "Vincent" lyric is “They got a portrait by Van Gogh on the Wikipedia page for clinical depression," which I'd bet is most people's favorite "Vincent" lyric. Whenever anyone sings intensely and dramatically about stupid things like Wikipedia, it cracks the world wide-open for me.


I love the shirt that Anthony wore for Carpool Karaoke. It’s got a flamingo and a tiger and a palm tree and says “TIME TO SUBMERGE”; it looks like it was made by a weirdo fifth-grader who’s blithely ignoring today’s art-class project in favor of working on her cool flamingo art. The new Chili Peppers album The Getaway came out last night and I’m so happy, I love my guys so much, my buddies and my brothers. One fun thing about there being a new Chili Peppers album is all the bores on the internet get to make a huge deal about how horribly the Red Hot Chili Peppers offend their incomparably refined sensibilities, and I get to scroll past their draggy bullshit and feel wildly superior in my chill joie de vivre. Another fun thing is that the Red Hot Chili Peppers are my favorite band in the world, and each new album always fortifies that joie de vivre and makes me feel like a 12-year-old goof again but also super-reflective and wistful and very chorus-to-“My Back Pages”-y. So in celebration of all that, I’m taking today as a half-holiday and going to eat an egg sandwich at a country store in the woods where they give you free cookies on your first visit. I'm going to wear my new dress and listen to The Getaway and probably "What the World Needs Now Is Love" and "Vincent" and lots of other songs that make everything feel as beautifully mushy and stupid and magic as the world truly is.


All the Songs We Loved in May


Fairfield Parlour, “Aries” (LJ)

The first morning I ever heard Aries, a bunch of cool things happened: 

1) The Universe stopped doing whatever else it was doing. It stood up, and walked to the archive it keeps about everything that ever happened, which it keeps because, sweetly, it's proud of itself. It located the notebook it keeps to document all the moments from all history when all the different creatures from all the different galaxies fell in love with songs the hardest, and then it wrote my Aries story down. I’ve probably been featured pretty heavily in that notebook, and I’d like to think that the Universe is proud of me for that, that it makes the Universe feel happier than usual about inventing the 1960s and electric guitars and Charlie Watts and so on.

2) I synaesthetically heard it as being the colour pink. There is some other music I hear as being pink but not a ton of it. I hear the entire album I’m Going Away by the Fiery Furnaces as being the really dense and pure glossy bubblegum pink and pastel purple combo that I found out about from its being featured on the plastic Babs Bunny purse I had when I was a kid, & then there's a trio of early Pink Floyd singles— Apples & OrangesCandy & A Currant BunArnold Layne— that I hear as being a very dark hot pink and also they are Christmas songs.
        Aries by Fairfield Parlour vacillates between being the palest seashell pink that could possibly count as being pink and the dusty rose of a velvet fainting couch in a black-walled room. All the lights are turned off in the room, except for one fey little lamp whose prissy aesthetic I would not be attracted to in an antique shop, which is shining directly onto the person sitting on the couch, who is either me or the guy singing the song, depending on my mood.

3) I didn’t believe it actually existed, or that anything in the world existed, except myself, which is narcissistic of me, but like... yeah. It was impossible for me to believe that a song so perfectly-suited to my own sensibilities was a real thing that a person who wasn’t me had conceptualized, written and recorded; the only logical conclusions I could draw were 1) that I was asleep and dreaming and the song is a song I made up in a dream. In the world where the song didn’t exist I would wake up in the morning and feel so sad that it didn’t exist &/or 2) that nothing in the entire world existed except myself and that everything I’d ever known to be real had only been a projection of my own mind. I’d made up London and Montreal and Los Angeles, and Paul McCartney, dogs, and wine. Every man who had ever broken my heart had broken my heart because I’d wanted my heart to be broken.

There are a lot of beautiful sentences in Aries. Here are some of them.

1) I used to collect cigarette cards.

2) Pilot Boat Park was our paradise.
3) Oh the summers with the girls, if you want I’ll show you the scars.
4) I really don’t know why & just now I can’t think back that far.
5) We smoked a million cigarettes.
6) I love the Beatles.

Those sentences were not written by me, which is weird. They were written by a man named Peter Daltrey who looks like a wizard. In 1967 he was in a band called Kaleidoscope, who sang a song called Black Fjord that I was really obsessed with four summers ago. In 1969, Peter Daltrey gave up on the dream of Kaleidoscope and changed its name to Fairfield Parlour, which was a good call. Peter Daltrey is an Aries, a March one, so when I listen to Aries I usually devote a chunk of my listening-to-Aries time to thinking about how cool it is that Peter Daltrey wrote a song named after his own Zodiac sign, which is totally something I would do, except that if I wrote a song named Cancer it wouldn’t have the same amount of impact as Aries because people would probably think it was about the disease or a metaphor about the disease. I wonder if Aries is about a girl Peter Daltrey met who is also an Aries, or about the idea of a girl who is an Aries, or if it’s about a girl at all. I hope it is. The vaguely-incestuous experience of falling in love with a person who has the same Zodiac sign as you is an extremely valid topic to write a song about.

There was a time in my life when I cared about shitty campy psychedelic rock singles written by unpopular bands who made no impression on the world more than anything. In my heart I loved the Beatles but I thought it was lame to like popular shit so I rarely let on that it was true. I was a dipshit with a DJ night. My DJ night was amazing, but also very lame, so lame it took place on a Tuesday, not even cool enough for a Sunday or Thursday. The Tuesdayness of it provided me with the only effective pick-up line I've ever known: “What are you doing Tuesday night?” (The answer was always “Nothing,” because nobody ever has Tuesday night plans, which gave me the opportunity to force them to come watch me bop around to Idle Race B-sides while drinking blueberry Stoli & tonics.)
        I remember, back then, feeling scared that at some point in my life the thrill of it would reach its finite conclusion: there are only so many shitty campy 60s psych singles that exist, and one day, yes, it’s true, I will have heard them all. I’ve been terrified that I might’ve finally hit that point since the summer I fell in love with Black Fjord, and it’s reassuring to find out that I still haven’t. But if Aries by Fairfield Parlour really is the last shitty campy 60s psych song ever to steal my heart, I would consider it a fucking honour.

"No Problem" by Chance the Rapper + "No Feelings" by Handsome Furs (Liz)


These songs are next to each other on my phone; I like to go back and forth and live in their different vibes and colors. "No Problem" is Day-Glo and fruit-punchy and all the happy colors of the world, "No Feelings" is black and white and silvery-gray, all fuzzed up together like the snow of some broken TV channel. So they're way different moods but they both give me energy and make me run a little faster, if I happen to be running at the time. The most energy-giving is the last minute of "No Feelings," when Dan sings it like a cheerleader. I wish lots more rock songs would sound like cheerleading.

Wolf Parade, "What Did My Lover Say? (It Always Had to Go This Way)" (Liz)

I like putting on my makeup to this song. My last morning in New York, the day I went to Veselka and thought about magnificence, I did my eyeliner and mascara and lipstick listening to it on my phone. I'd gone to see Wolf Parade the night before and bought a t-shirt of Godzilla putting on lipstick, then slept in that shirt and kept it on the whole day. That thing of putting on makeup without having taken a shower + wearing the shirt I slept in made me feel 26, grubby and careless in a way that used to seem glamorous to me and still kind of does. 

And I was going to type something about how I wish my 26-year-old self had gotten to hear "What Did My Lover Say?" by Wolf Parade, but then I realized I don't actually agree with that. I'm no longer concerned with the wellbeing of my 26-year-old self, I'm over it, who cares how you wasted your time or didn't waste your time when you were younger? Or how you fucked up or didn't fuck up. It's so much better to hear songs now, especially this song, with that cool verse about beaches turning into earrings, and all the other good lyrics about the ocean and the sun. My favorite is: "I got a sandcastle heart, made out of fine black sand/Sometimes it turns into glass when shit gets hot." I hope all the ocean/sun metaphors keep getting more slapdash and grand as we get older and older.


Thing of the Week: The Day Karl & LJ Didn't Drink Black Velvets or Eat CoYo, A Theoretical Peach Schnapps Wine Cooler

LJ'S THING OF THE WEEK: The Day Karl & I Didn't Drink Black Velvets or Eat CoYo

I met my soulmate Karl T. Lyons about a month ago, but we also know each other from the great many past lives we have previously lived through as a duo. This was extremely obvious from the very first moment we met.
        Karl and I are co-workers, and the first week I worked at my new job my boss kept telling me that Karl and I were going to love each other, but I had my doubts, since I’m not the hugest fan of most people. I was sort of dreading working with him for the first time since my boss had obviously been telling him that he was going to love me too, and it would have been really uncomfortable if we’d ended up hating each other. Worse even than hating each other would have been complete indifference. At least if we hated each other we could have been like, “Well, love and hate are two sides of the same coin!” and then participated in a workplace feud that I’m sure would have been very entertaining for all parties involved.
        But, as I’ve already made explicitly clear, Karl & I are soulmates, and upon our initial meeting, experienced the phenomenon commonly known as love at first sight. We’re both Cancerians, obviously, and within, like, ten minutes of knowing each other, began planning our joint birthday party. At our birthday party we will be co-performing a conceptual art piece simulating all the different stages of sub/dom sexual intercourse in increasing intensity wherein all our party guests will be free to leave at whichever stage makes them feel uncomfortable— this also relates to the pro-positivity movement we founded that day, since we wouldn’t want anyone to feel uncomfortable and therefore negative about the experience of watching us have fake sex at our joint birthday party.

Over the course of the next few weeks, a bunch of other beautiful and important Karl & I things happened, the most significant being that we both watched the live-action 2016 adaptation of The Jungle Book. At this point, I find it nearly impossible to relate to people who haven’t seen it, and probably never will. If you can’t comprehend the fundamental truth of the pack being the strength of the wolf and the wolf bring the strength of the pack, I don’t really want to know you. Other cool things we did:

1) figured out what Harry Potter houses all our co-workers would be sorted into, and obviously we’re both Slytherins
2) decided that I’m an arctic fox and he’s a snow leopard
3) staged a fake fight at work where I was like “Your cologne is irritating the fuck out of my eyes” but then we kind of lost interest in it because it’s way easier to just love each other
4) started a Keeping Up With The Kardashians book club
5) decided to learn Krav Maga
6) decided to leave work in the middle of work one Sunday afternoon so we could go get CoYo (coconut yoghurt) parfaits at Whole Foods and then spend the rest of our lives at Whole Foods (we didn’t do that)
7) And then we decided to get married, and also become wedding planners, and have four weddings, one for each season.

Last Sunday— the Sunday after the Sunday we didn’t abandon work in the middle of it to go eat CoYo parfaits at Whole Foods—we decided to turn our dream of eating CoYo parfaits at Whole Foods into a reality. That day was pretty much the greatest fucking day of my life.
         We met up for pre-CoYo parfait iced BAMs (black Americanos) at Browns of Brockley, where we also shared a brownie, since a big part of Karl and I’s relationship is loving RS (refined sugar) togeths. At Browns of Brockley, we made friends with a stranger named Bob something-that-wasn’t-Callahan-but-sounded-like-Callahan, who asked us if we’d be his guardian angels and watch his bag, which obvio we were down to do, since we’re both major angels anyway, and it was nice to finally be appreciated for it. We hung out with Bob non-Callahan for a bit, and then we went to a little shop by Brockley station that I forget the name of, where we bought lollipops and took a selfie with the owner of the shop. Karl’s lollipop had a pineapple on it, and mine had a rose.
        We took the train to Green Park, and then stopped into a Japanese bakery that was at once spartan and twee. It sold shit like red bean paste wrapped in an oak leaf. We eventually ranked the employees of that shop (“Japanese ladies who thought we were WILD”) as #7 on the list we made called People Who Loved Us Most Today. Karl bought me a maraschino cherry embedded in a block of clear gelatin shaped like a gemstone which was wrapped in a little parcel of lovely Japanese paper that we became very weirded out by. It felt warm and damp in my hand. We made several disgusting jokes about it that I am too shy to write down and then a man on the street told me that I should make Karl shave off his beard and I was really appalled that anyone would ever speak ill of my beautiful snow leopard and shouted about it for a while but then moved on with my life.

Next we went to Whole Foods, but they didn’t have any CoYo parfaits, which was fucking ridiculous, so I punished them by shoplifting two raw vegan banoffee pies. I just walked out, carrying them in my bare hands, and nobody even noticed, because we are just too huge of angels for it to ever occur to any human that we might also be immoral. So that was a nice little thrill for me! I felt cool and badass and like every single person in the world was in love with me.
         Post-Whole Foods, we devoted about an hour of our lives to popping into a million different bakeries and bougie health food places called things like Detox Kitchen and asking them if they had any CoYo— nobody had any CoYo! It was fucking embarrassing for them, and disgusting to us. I got really into playing the role of “delicate little flower who has every dietary restriction, and all my fragile digestive system is capable of handling is CoYo”— I was a dairy-free soy-free gluten-free vegan. We stormed out of so many places in a huff. Another thing that happened during this phase of our day was we followed an shady-looking cardboard sign with the world “MODELS” plus an arrow written on it in Sharpie up a decrepit staircase to see what would happen, but then we decided that the answer was probably death and turned around. And then we met our cool new enemy the garbagey dog-owner who replied to Karl’s asking her what breed her dog was with “Don’t ask me things,” which was an admittedly inspiring take on being a human, but at the same time, maybe save your garbage attitude for people who aren’t angels.

Next we went to Liberty, where I performed my “I have every dietary restriction in the world” shtick for an employee of the Liberty chocolate shop. Karl told her we were engaged and she congratulated us with such alarming sincerity that it ultimately earned her a #4 ranking on our list of People Who Loved Us (“lady who thought we were actually engaged (liberty, choc shop)”)
         I guess now’s as good of a time as any to mention that Karl is a gay man who is in a long-term committed relationship with another gay man. But, you know, it’s been a big year for me thinking about marrying like twenty-five straight dudes who aren’t in long-term committed relationships with anyone except sometimes me, and they’ve basically all been shit-shows, so fuck it, you know? I may as well just call a spade a spade and marry Karl.
        At Liberty I tried on a cute dress that looked good on me and then we explored the housewares department and made some plans for the future house we’re going to live in together. Karl has insisted that said house contain a “cat room,” which will be a shrine to cats featuring cat trinkets, cat paraphernalia, cat art, and also some actual cats. I am not the world’s hugest cat person but like cats well enough so I’m fine with that. We found a cat-shaped butter dish that would have been perfect for the cat room but it seemed like it might be too small for butter. We talked to a Liberty employee about it. Karl told her he worried that it might be too small for a stick of butter and the employee said “Well, just cut a smaller piece of butter”— I see her point, but at the same time, why don’t you just make us a bigger cat dish. We went downstairs to the men’s department and decided that Comme des Garcons PLAY shit with the logo of heart with eyes on it is gauche and I held a long-sleeved striped t-shirt of it up to myself to gross Karl out and then I decided that I want to own a ton of it, but like, for around the house, on hungover off days, to wear while eating cold Thai food leftovers and watching Kardashians.
        Then we left Liberty, and were entirely over CoYo at that point, and decided that what we actually wanted was to drink a Black Velvet. A Black Velvet is Guinness & champagne mixed together in equal proportions, ideally served out of a tin cup. I’ve never had one, but sometimes pretend like I have, since it’s so on-brand for me to be drinking tons of them constantly. Everybody knows I’m really into champagne, and that’s great, I’m classy as fuck and I’m not going to blame myself for that. But, let’s be honest, champagne is a bit basic. The addition of Guinness scraps it up.
        We spent the next, like, five fucking hours of the day doing the Black Velvet version of the same thing we’d already done during our CoYo search, only by this point we were better at it. We were more straightforward, all business, extremely confident in our ability to communicate faux-outrage using body language and minimal dialogue. I think we probably destroyed a lot of people’s lives that day.
        Even though Hix didn’t serve Black Velvets and therefore was worthless to us, it was there, and we were at it, and we needed to take a breather from traipsing around Central London, so we hung out there for a minute. I had a glass of champagne and then a Zombie and Karl had something I can’t remember and then a Zombie. We ate a plate of raw radishes and mayonnaise. It was the Scottish bartender’s last day at his job and a drunk woman who told me an anecdote about one of the actors from Game of Thrones that I found difficult to follow bought a bunch of Mars bars for the kitchen to deep-fry in his honor. He gave us a bite of one, in doing so earning himself a very respectable sixth-place position on our People Who Loved Us list.
        At that point we were deeply over Central London and needed to venture back Southeast, where we belong, but not before stopping into a hundred thousand more pubs and restaurants to inquire as to whether or not they served Black Velvets— they didn’t. “What is this city coming to?” we asked the Universe, raising our palms to the sky in theatrical defeat.
        On the Jubilee train to Canada Water we met a very drunk lad whose can of disgusting lager I took a sip of, followed by the #5 Person Who Loved Us Most, “Jack & Coke Girl.” Jack & Coke Girl had cute fucked up teeth, said something sassy to the drunk lad, and was drinking a can of Jack & Coke on public transit, the exact act of which is an integral component of my summer fashion concept, so obviously I had no choice but to love her.   

Once we made it back Southeast, we went to the Rose in New Cross, which is our thing. We got to chatting with one of the bartenders, who was Irish and vaguely cute but also the inspiration my recent genius Tweet “worst thing that cld possibly happen to a person happened to me last nite: was talking 2 a cute boy, then he said he's into PARKOUR.” Karl & I fucked up a bottle of Cava in about twenty-five minutes, and then fled the scene, since were both really over listening to Parkour-man tell us about Parkour/the boring backstory to his affected bisexuality/congratulate himself for having a “non-skinny” 6’2” Danish girlfriend who obviously doesn’t exist. We gave him a stolen raw vegan banoffee pie as his medal for having a non-skinny girlfriend and then went to a different pub and tried to convince the bartender to eat an Oreo that Karl had picked up off the street in SoHo but he wouldn’t, because he was gluten-free. We ordered a glass of Prosecco and a pint of Guinness and mixed them together in an empty glass. It was not delicious. We went to a chicken shop and ordered a thing of fries and a thing of potato wedges and ate them with ketchup and mayonnaisey sauce and then went back to the Rose for one more. The Irish bartender was still there, being a nuisance and having shitty energy, ordering shots and wearing a stupid skinny scarf and leaning drunkenly against a pole. Fuck that guy.
        We sat with our legs up on the table and Karl heckled him. “You’re a mess!” he yelled.  
       “Please stop!” I begged, “Please don’t bring him back into our lives!”
       That was when we wrote our list of People Who Loved Us Most Today. Even though the Irish bartender probably loved us, he didn’t make the cut. He was sectioned off into his own little category, People Who Don’t Count. It consisted only of him. The number 1 through 3 spots on our list all belonged to people from the last half-hour of our day, because that was where we were at that moment, and we were drunk, and our long-term memories were weak at that point. Number three was a cockapoo named Dexter we met, number two was the hot bartender with the great ass, and number one was “bouncer lady at The Rose.” I don’t remember much about “bouncer lady at The Rose,” but it’s nice to know that for a moment of my life I believed that she loved me.

A couple months ago I went to a bougie/hipstery art party chock-a-block with dilettantes who wanted to see and be seen with a cute boy, and after I’d taken a moment to process the vibe of my surroundings, I said, “This seems like the kind of fun other people are always having,” and as soon as I said it I could see from the way the boy looked at me that I’d impressed him, that he now saw me as sharp and tuned-in woman with a keen eye for “noticing what things are like,” and I liked the way it made me feel. Sometimes it’s alright, spending my time with beautiful useless straight men who probably identify as “sapiosexual” (EW) on their Okcupid profiles, but at the same time, attending some la-di-da art world shindig with a moron is never the kind of fun I would actually want to be having. It’s a kind of fun that I will acknowledge is fun but it is a kind of fun that I would prefer to hate on than participate in.
        The fun I had on Sunday is the only kind of fun I care about. I like zoning really hard into the presence of one person, I get kinda squirrely when it’s two or three. I like running around and wreaking havoc and having adventures, making messes. I like lying about dietary restrictions and irritating strangers and making lists of things that don’t matter. All I want is to eat stupid food and get very drunk and marry gay men. I want to be an arctic fox and grow my own garden in the tundra.

LIZ'S THING OF THE WEEK: Peruvian Sangria, A Theoretical Peach Schnapps Wine Cooler, George Harrison of the Beatles

Here are three of my favorite things this week:

i. Last weekend my friends Renaldo and Sarah got married in a park near Santa Cruz and a bunch of us rented a house* in the redwoods, which had a baby grand piano and the weirdest hot tub and this amazing pantry and a copy of Where the Sidewalk Ends by the bed. The wedding was adorbs; there were bacon-wrapped hot dogs and a taco station and a super-cinnamony Peruvian sangria where all the fruit was strawberries and pineapples. On the drive back on Sunday we stopped for wine in Carmel and beer in Solvang and listened to lots of Moth episodes in the car, including the one with “Franny’s Last Ride” by Mike DeStefano. I don't think the Moth description really does it much justice ("Mike struggles with how to give support to his wife, who is dying in hospice"); it's about love and a motorcycle and being free, really it's just as much about not dying as it is about dying. It's 11 minutes long and you should listen to it at least once. Listen to it in a place where you feel good about crying.

*That photo is not our house, it's a house down the street from our house. I loved that staircase and really wanted to experience walking up it.

ii. I’m reading Blood, Bones & Butter, which is a memoir by Gabrielle Hamilton, who runs the restaurant Prune in New York City. The book is so fantastic, she's had this wild life and she's so tough and no-bullshit and seems so deliberate in everything she does, foodwise and otherwise. Twice this week I've watched the part in the Mind of a Chef episode where she peels the membrane off a huge lump of poached/shocked sweetbreads; I'll probably watch it several more times in the upcoming days. I regret not going to Prune while I was in New York and eating some soft ricotta with raspberries and figs and honey or a brown butter cake with salted yogurt and cold candied lemon, or at least just looking in the window. 
Here are some things from Blood, Bones & Butter that I want to eat:

-her first meal in Greece after traveling across Europe in the middle of the winter in her early 20s, when she’s run out of money and eaten only a raw onion and some pumpkin seeds in the last five days, that meal being: two dark-orange-yolked eggs fried in olive oil with coarse sea salt; a thick slice of crusty bread; and a blended drink of apple and honey and milk, which I imagine as so beautifully frothy and cold and golden

-retsina and lamb or anything from some restaurant on the Aegean Sea during that same Greece trip, where there’s no menu and you find out what they’re serving by walking back into the kitchen and lifting the lids off the pots and looking inside

-the prosciutto and arugula and olive oil sandwich her Italian husband makes for her on their first date, when he picks her up on his motorcycle and takes her to the beach in Queens in the freezing cold. She likes the sandwich but tells him he should add butter, for “the perfection of three fats together,” which is how I’d like my sandwich too

-ladyfinger biscuits flipped from the edge of the kitchen table so that they fly into the air and then splash into your champagne glass

-blackberry schnapps in white wine with a tablespoon of brandy, in a jelly jar with ice. (Her mom drinks this and Gabrielle Hamilton thinks it’s terrible and calls it “some sort of shitty wine cooler,” but I think it sounds exciting. Maybe add something sparkling too, like the passionfruit LaCroix? I’m curious about schnapps all of a sudden; I think peach schnapps could maybe be my thing of the summer.)

iii. Like everyone else, I love that New Yorker piece on the Frog & Toad books and Arnold Lobel (who made the illustration above, which is from a book from 1963 called The Secret Three by Mildred Myrick). There is something very soothing and wonderful about reading other people describe the plots to Frog & Toad stories. This was my fave:

"Take, for instance, the story 'Alone,' from 'Days with Frog and Toad,' in which Toad goes to Frog’s house to visit him but finds a note on the door that reads, 'Dear Toad, I am not at home. I went out. I want to be alone.' Toad begins to experience a little crisis: 'Frog has me for a friend. Why does he want to be alone?' Toad discovers that Frog is sitting and thinking on an island far from the shore, and he worries that Frog isn’t happy and doesn’t want to see him anymore. But, when they meet (after Toad falls headfirst into the water and soaks the sandwiches he’s made for lunch), Frog says, 'I am happy. I am very happy. This morning when I woke up I felt good because the sun was shining. I felt good because I was a frog. And I felt good because I have you for a friend. I wanted to be alone. I wanted to think about how fine everything is.'"

And then I went back and reread the Frog & Toad shoutout from one of the first things I ever wrote for Strawberry Fields Whatever (which turns four-years-old tomorrow!), this little thing about buddies and pathological optimism and the first time I met Evan Dando. I still agree with almost all of it, and "He resembles George Harrison of the Beatles, but he wears his hair tied in a small bow at the back" is still a very sweet lyric to me. "Frank Mills" is all-time sweetest on many different levels.