After being set free from the jury box, I was inspired by the sunny weather to walk from Pioneer Square back to my office in the 'tween. On the way, I (re-)noticed Cafe Zumzum, which has always mildly fascinated me with their "Ebony and Ivory" theme of Indian-Pakistani fusion theme. I crossed the street and found a long line waiting to get inside, which made a quick lunch there all the more compelling. The food was pretty tasty, but with my main training in Indian food limited to Cedar's and TastyBite entrees from Trader Joe's I'm not really qualified to dissect the subtle differences inherent in the cross-border collaboration. The naan was definitely different, as it was clearly not from a tandoori oven, they had open-faced sandwiches on the menu, and also included a more tortilla-like bread product with my chickpea-potato rice entree.
Later, it was department happy hour at the Elysian. Our table in the back wasn't large enough to contain the masses that arrived to partake in the festivites. Although this seemed to overwhelm the waitress, we all got used to it and survived.
After the happy hour broke up Carolyn, Elanor, and I tried to meet some other people, but they'd already called it a night. We ended up at Barca for a drink, by way of a quick survey of the very-crowded Purr (which took over the space formerly occupied by the Bad Juju.). I think it's a gay-interest bar, but based on our short stay (there was nowhere to sit), and the general make-up of the Capitol Hill bar scene, it was hard to tell.
Saturday afternoon I got a haircut, thought about going to the 826 Seattle open house (but didn't feel up to the trek to greenwood -- call it something I ate. Or didn't. I eventually figured out that the reason that my stomach hurt was probably hunger. Stupid missed biological cues).
Later, I met up with carolyn and Betsy at Elliott Bay Books to hear George Saunders read. Knowing that he was going to have an evening event at the bookstore definitely contributed to my laziness w/r/t the Space Travel Supply Store. Although he was selling a new book, he read from a funny story about a melodrama based entirely on commercials written for Harper's [which seems to have destroyed/hidden their once vast online archives], and another piece about Dubai written for GQ. Although I brought some paperbacks along with me, I didn't feel like standing in the long line to get them signed.
Instead, we headed north to Brandon's party in Wallingford. On the way, we made a stop at my apartment for a costume change -- the party was possibly dress-up themed so the old thrift/vintage tuxedo once again came out of storage -- and to the grocery store to pick up some beer (v. excited about finding Honker's IPA in stores). I'm sure that lots of notable things happened, but not remembering them seems to be one consequence of all of this delayed updating. There was a really nice tribute arts and crafts project on display in memory of the recently dead creator of Stove Top Stuffing, which was the talk of the party.
On Sunday, I hiked over to Trader Joe's to stock up on foodstuffs. Later, I went to Victrola to work because it the heating system at my apartment building still hadn't caught on to the fact of the weather in Seattle being extra cold. Typing things using a blanket over my keyboard or wearing gloves just seemed far too impractical for my tastes.
Monday was typical. Work, techfee, swimming, pub quiz. If only our expert on celebrity photo identification had been around, we would have definitely won.
After work on Tuesday, Carolyn, Carole, Atri, and I met up for seven-dollar wine night at Chez Gaudy. It was a fun concept: fetch your own bottle of wine from the seven dollar rack (or cooler, for white wine drinkers) and serve yourself in a cozy atmosphere. They also had low-priced (color-coded) small bowls of food set out on a table and brought hot items around dim-sum style. The verdict was that the concept was good, the food was tasty, but that it it much more suitable as a happy hour type thing than a dining experience. Particularly because we were in one of the back caves, the warm food didn't make it out to us as often as we might have liked; so we ended up eating a lot of things on bread. Nevertheless, I'd definitely recommend it for an afterdinner snack or as an economical way to drink a fair amount of inexpensive wine outside of the home.
We had the idea of walking off the wine, to make the drivers in the crowd more suitable for safe driving. But given the icy turn that the weather has taken, hot chocolate at Bauhaus won out.
Yesterday our office had it's annual holiday party. We all carpooled over to Cafe Flora and took over the atrium. As usual, the highlight (aside from an interesting fake meatloaf sandwich) was the white elephant gift exchange. Somehow, I've become the arbiter of the rules. I worry about the fairness and conduct of the game in the event that I actually graduate.
This year, I wound up taking home a small stuffed animal Bison, complete with Cornell Lab of Ornithology approved Bison noises. Who knew that ornithologists also certified mammal calls?