so...we have a date set, i guess? whatever that means? after i faxed in the form, i kept assuring the dotytron that even if we break up or get cold feet, we're only out $100 and change for the wedding permit for the park so it's not a big deal. and it's NOT A BIG DEAL (he, on the other hand, was entering it into the google calendar even as i spoke - i guess nothing makes it more official than THAT, our own personal tablets from on high). it's really really really hard to have a conversation with people where you mention looking say, at wedding sites, before people get all glowy and giddy and zippy about it. you can't just say, "yeah, we checked out some potential sites for a wedding" to peeps when you're tallying up your weekend and have them treat it the same as if you'd said, "yeah, we just tried to rid our apartment of fleas." and i hate to generalize, but women especially go crazy for that s**t. but it's actually kind of sweet that people care so much and get so excited and amped up...i'm just most excited of all to have everyone we love around us and hanging with us and eating with us and laughing with us.
anyway, in other news...we also checked out this house that we both really really like but i think we're going to put all thoughts of home ownership out of our minds until i'm assured a job for the next 8 months at least.
did i tell you guys that a few weeks back when paul newman passed away, "entertainment weekly" published a tribute issue, and i was reading it on the subway and totally started CRYING? in public?!? i just became suddenly overcome with what a decent man he was (by all accounts) and how sad it is that they really don't make 'em like that anymore. like what kind of comparable actor do we have now who approaches that kind of gentle altruism? he seems to stand for a simpler, better, time...not the current decaying decadence and moral decrepitude in which we find ourselves.
so the dotytron and i decided we would undertake a "best of newman" retrospective. last night we watched "cool hand luke." talk about an anachronism! do they even MAKE anti-establishment movies anymore? and how bloody effin' fantastic is that movie poster??? "cool hand luke" has this awesome, jolty texture to it and a certain brick-fisted panache. the cuts are pointed and stylized at the same time...and the story is fantastic, but soul-crushing. it's like a prison "one flew over the cuckoo's nest." i wonder if the eventual crushing of the upstart protagonists in these films was a necessary device to enrage and inspire the anti-establishment in the populace, or whether it's a commentary on how truly entrenched the establishment is (a nihilistic philosophy.) i can't really decide. at least you HAD these kinds of movies being made. nowadays, the odd-duck, square-peg movies aren't exactly inspiring...they're either played for broad laughs or are hopelessly maudlin, relying on actors going (in the words of robert downey jr's character in "tropic thunder") "full r-tard" (forrest gump, etc.)
anyway, it was great and i think few people can approximate newman's clear-eyed, rakish charm. there's a lot being suggested in the film and it unfolds with long, grand conversations that have a certain stage-like delivery. there are hints as to the self-destructive psychological underpinnings for newman's seemingly carefree inability to toe the line...most evident in the exchange with his mother. you should all definitely check it out.
tonight i have an early(ish) dodgeball game and then i'm going home to make spicy beef kimchi with udon. dead easy and hella tasty. i got the idea from martha stewart living magazine. la martha's source recipe is for a "kimchi stew with chicken and tofu."
spicy beef and kimchi udon
makes 4 servings but you can easily tinker with it and up the quantities
prep time: 30 minutes MAX and that's if you're dragging your feet like a mofo
4 c. beef or chicken stock
2 16 oz. jars of kimchi (usually in the refrigerated section of chinese grocery stores)
1 T. minced ginger
1 T. minced garlic
however much beef you have/feel like putting in...cuts like flank are good, thinly sliced (tonight i'm using about 1 lb of leftover beef chuck from my freezer)
2 packs of enoki mushrooms (i cut off the last 1" or so so they break up easy)
1 block of soft tofu (chinese style silken is best), cut into cubes
salt and pepper to taste
4 packs of udon noodles (the plastic white square ones)
- throw everything up until the salt and pepper into a pot, heat and simmer until the beef is cooked through...season to taste with salt and pepper. make up the stock with enough water to give you enough soup for 4 servings.
- meanwhile, in a different pot of boiling water, cook the udon noodles until they separate and are cooked through. divide the noodles between the bowls, ladle the kimchi beef soup on top.
- slurp up with chopsticks and big spoons.