coffee break

I often make the Starbucks runs at work. Not necessarily because I need the caffeine (though that is a secondary impetus), but more often because I need the break from the office, where I rarely take the time to breathe. I usually even work straight through my lunch.

Going for coffee means heading west into the foothills to the Starr Pass Marriott. The desert surrounds the resort, all picturesque saguaros and blooming palo verdes this time of year.

My car door is opened by a valet who knows and calls me by my last name, and the marble underfoot is perpetually shiny and cool. The view out the two-story wall of windows is partially desert, partially the city so dimmed by distance as to be only a curiosity. Twenty-foot-high sheer curtains whisper slightly in the breeze made by the opening and shutting of the massive glass front doors.

I pretend for about five minutes that I am someone whose life moves slowly enough that I could waste several hours doing nothing beyond laying in a deck chair by an impossibly blue pool on a weekday in April.

And by then the coffee is made and I make my way back to the car, down the winding road and back into my job's perpetual crises, breathing slightly easier for the next few hours.


weekend inspiration

Every weekend, Garance Doré posts an inspirational picture. It's along the lines of a shoe, or a piece of art, or jewelry.

My perpetual weekend inspiration is our calico, whose luxurious naps are a constant source of envy.


things I like this week, vol. 41

From the selby's Nina Pohl shoot, which was lovely and mid-century modern - though I preferred the flowers. 

. . .

Einstein's desk, which I saw two pictures of in a week, one accompanied by this quote: "If a cluttered desk is a sign of a cluttered mind, of what, then, is an empty desk a sign?" And even though I spent two and a half days cleaning up my office over spring break, at least I felt somewhat validated about it having been very much like Albert's in the first place. 

. . .

Bookshelves in the bathroom . . . 

 . . . bookshelves in the kitchen . . .

. . . bookshelves in the bedroom. These make me conclude that we need more bookshelves in our apartment, preferably built-ins. Hardwood floors wouldn't hurt, either.

. . .

Neil Gaiman did a collaboration with BlackBerry called A Calendar of Tales. He twitter-sourced ideas by asking questions about each month ("What would you burn in November, if you could?"), picking a tweet that inspired him ("My medical records, but only if that would make it all go away.") and then wrote a story for each month. And then they posted all the stories, and asked people to create art based on those stories, and they're going to pick an art piece for each month and turn the whole damn thing into a calendar. 

The stories are quite good, and the art that people submitted is incredible. You can see/read/watch the whole thing here. What it all has to do with BlackBerry I don't know, but it's beautiful despite that.

. . . 


Dimitry Tsykalov, whose works make me think of these lines from Eliot's Wasteland:

And I will show you something different from either
Your shadow at morning striding behind you
Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you;
I will show you fear in a handful of dust.

. . . 

This is from a photoshoot done with disposable cameras, by two models who are dating, as an ad for Gucci Guilty Black. I am fascinated by the contrast of the apparent intimacy of the photos and the obviously advertorial nature of the whole enterprise. 

. . .

This house is downtown, just behind the Stillwell house, and is quite gorgeous. And for sale for an absurd $1.5mil, because apparently it was the home to some Senator I've never heard of.

. . .

Morocco is quickly climbing the list of "places I need to visit soon."

. . .

'Come, my friends,
'Tis not too late to seek a newer world.
Push off, and sitting well in order smite
The sounding furrows; for my purpose holds
To sail beyond the sunset, and the baths
Of all the western stars, until I die.
It may be that the gulfs will wash us down;
It may be we shall touch the Happy Isles,
And see the great Achilles, whom we knew.
Though much is taken, much abides; and though
We are not now that strength which in old days
Moved earth and heaven, that which we are, we are,
One equal temper of heroic hearts,
Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will
To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.
- Alfred, Lord Tennyson, from Ulysses

. . . 

The irony of Courtney Love discussing makeup amuses me. She seems surprisingly coherent. 

. . .

It was in my head for a week or two before I actually listened to the lyrics and fell in love with itfor that reason, too.