Sunday, May 9, 2010

16 Days in India

In February 2009, I took a two-and-a-half week vacation from work to travel India. My first stop was Mumbai, where I stayed with my aunt’s brother, Shaffat, for a few days. Shaffat lived in Canada and was spending one year abroad in Mumbai for work. In the evenings we went to dinner together and met some of his friends, and during the day I was on my own, though often serviced by Shaffat’s personal driver, Sheker. Afterwards, I continued my trip on my own. Throughout those first few days and the solo ones that followed, I took to writing notes about my trip in a pocket-sized notebook. It hadn't been my intention to keep any kind of journal or to write anything down; rather, the desire sprang spontaneously and I enjoyed the occasional reflection.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

"Snickers is almost a perfect food"

A blog post I wrote for C&EN about food texture, here.

Breaths of chocolate, no sweat research

Now, you can indulge in one of the world’s finest flavors without gaining weight. How so, you ask? It has become possible to, say, sit at a chic café and inhale chocolate to your heart’s content without the threat of accumulating cellulite. All you have to do is online-order a pack of Le Whifs: lipstick-sized tubes filled with chocolate particles that you puff into your mouth for a cocoa sensation. Calorie count? Less than one.

Continue reading on C&EN, here.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Work-and-play fabric, translucent concrete

Say it's raining on the day of a board meeting, but you still want to bike to work—and afterward ride to that new restaurant that opened downtown—without changing your clothes. Now you can.

Continue reading on C&EN, here.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Blurb: Guy on Metro

On the metro I sat next to a guy in a dark suit and a top hat. He had a black briefcase on his lap that looked like it came out of the early 1900s or something. Out of the corner of my eye I could see that really the whole outfit looked like he’d just walked off the boat at Ellis Island, back in the day when many people walked off boats there. Something smelled strongly of flowers and it came from him I think. The smell was very strong, like he’d just taken a shower in his mother’s perfume, or his girlfriend’s perfume. He started looking for something in his briefcase, and I was wondering if maybe the whole thing was filled with rose petals. I thought of him opening his bag and the rose petals pouring out of it, onto the seat and my thighs and the floor and my feet. I felt good next to this guy, like I was in a very sweet time warp. Like I was on a ship coming from Eastern Europe at the beginning of the 20th century, but instead of the air smelling like seawater and piss, it smelled like this guy who showered in rose petals.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Narrative for the Soul of a City: Interpreting the Artwork of Nick Haas

Event Horizon

South Loop and Urban Artery

Haas’ collages present a unique interplay between urban structures, as he creates decorative patterns inspired by the urban environment without completely abstracting its individual elements. Things radiate from all sides, giving the sense that the city’s lifeless objects play as equal a part in the life of the city as its inhabitants. Lights move purposefully toward a goal (Event Horizon), a building protects a passing train from the heat of the sun (South Loop), and train tracks pump energy into the streets they intersect (Urban Artery). We get a vision of a city that breathes with life independently of the living. It’s as if each element has its own personality, a unique character that adds a new angle to the piece as a whole. In turn, each piece acts out its own drama, and together they form a collection that provides a narrative for the soul of the city.