I am finally realized as normal today.
I slept a full night's sleep in my bed last night. No floors, short nights, couch with kitten jumping on my face, or going to bed after drinking whiskey. A normal, nice, dreamy, refreshing sleep.

And that's what I needed, as I was exhausted last night. So today I have continued that laze. I've done laundry, made a nice breakfast (potato dumplins with local tomato sauce), read a New Yorker article about Governor's Island. And listened to some more new music, which cannot be underrated. I've decided that there's some stuff I need to get on vinyl- like Van Morrison's "Tupelo Honey" album....
Anyways, taking care of business these days.



Action packed. Never a break. That's my life this week.

Spent a couple days earlier this week getting ready for a trip up to my friend Kyle's family cabin on Orcas Island, which kicked butt.
I drove up early with Kenji and we caught the ferry. Got to the place about noon, and enjoyed the beautiful day by swimming, drinking beer, playing apple baseball, cooking, hot tubbing, and general, all-around shenanigans. Fell asleep after s'mores around the campfire on the lawn. Deer came and ate the apples while I slept.
Woke up early, made biscuits with stewed peaches for breakfast, then had to hop back on the ferry to make it to work Friday. Which sucked. I wasn't right until about 6pm, when I ate my polenta dumplings (made kinda like matzoh balls) with fresh cranberry bean and braised fennel ragout, with wild arugula and pecorino shavings. Hearty food, described by the Mexican dishwasher as "comida que curado crudo." Anti-Hangover food. Definitely.

And after work tonight, I have a party to go to- another risky wager whiskey rager. Auch Aye.


Wani no King of Pro.

I rallied the Dart down to Oly yesterday, with Kenji riding shotgun, to see Aki one last time before he left for Syracuse for the year. Many funny things happened; in some ways it reverted to a highschool summer.
We hit golf balls. 1st time I've done that in a long while. The blackberries next to the golf course interested me slightly more....
Dinner with the Ulmers. Sushi. Fresh sushi. Albacore. Tamago. Cucumber. Squid. All hand rolled, home-style. Awesome.
King of Pro Baseball. The best baseball video game ever, played on Nintendo 64, from '96. Yes, of course epic games can be played on the moon!
VHS randomness. Highlights: Aki's Bambi vs King Kong. Lupin the III from 7 years ago.

And I came back this morning, and today I'm cooking in preparation for an overnight trip to Orcas Island Thursday night. Probably more BBQ something rather....


Psycho a Go-Go!

Had the day off yesterday; payday. I took it to the bank.

But the funny part of the day for me was running into 2 former roomates, from 2 different houses.
Ben, who I ran into at the bike shop he works at (and also lives in the short bus behind the shop, really) and he gave me massive amounts of info on bikes. He also said in a quiet voice, "I can just build you a custom bike." I may take him up on the offer, as I've already realized my bike is fine, but not good by any means. It needs better components, and so I should get something more serious. But that'll take some dinero.... (I imagine a bike in matte green, with white accents. As an Alligator, of course)
And then later in the day, I ran into Sarah at Whole Foods, who I lived with at my last place, and the entire house is moving out. She was pretty bummed that they had realized that they needed to clean the whole place out, which hasn't happened for years, so it'll be lots of dump runs. Suck for them.

I also obtained a 150gb+ music library on my external hard drive, which contained some great rarities, like The Sonics, Seattle's (Tacoma's) Original Rock Band.

Other than that, I'm hanging pictures before going to work today. Fun.


Once Upon A Time In Seattle.

I had plans today. Big, productive plans. And then a man named Gregor from Scotland ruined them when I noticed his facebook status basically said, "I am in Seattle, lost like a babe in the woods."

So I said, I didn't really want to do said big, productive things anyways, and I headed downtown where I met him and did some touristy things. Then we drank whiskey. And then beer. And then ate Chinese food. And enjoyment was had by all!

The end.



I forgot to mention this rather important/interesting news:

I finally got a letter from his Honorable Dr. Jonathan Coleman, MP for Northcote, Minister of Immigration, Minister of Broadcasting, Associate Minister of Tourism, and finally, Associate Minister of Health. What does this dude not do? But I only care for one position, really.

In his letter, he basically re-confirms my status to me, but apologizes that, "It is unfortunate, in particular, that your assessment was not completed by the Wellington branch of INZ before you returned to the US." He then went on to say that the people of the London office, "Are terrible-as, bro." Ok, maybe not.

I still have my extension, indefinite, which he covers, and concludes with this:
"I take on board your complaints about New Zealand Immigration's service. As Minister of Immigration, I am committed to ensuring we have the world-class immigration service New Zealand needs, and steps are all ready being taken in this direction."

So what ever that means. I am still really on my own schedule, I suppose. Slowly.


Up late. I have my reasons.

But the big news is food related: tot-dogs 2nd go-around yesterday. Bacon with mac n cheeze sauce with (upgraded) grated dill pickle. I thought it was pretty yummy, there are some issues for sure, like cooking time, that may put an end to this, but I am continuing to think on this one.

Also, today I made something I never made before: scrapple. It was made with pork belly bits diced up, onions, thyme, garlic, polenta and my crazy rich chicken stock. I put it in the loaf pan, cooled and sliced it, and then fried it. I consumed it happily with chimichurri I had, and then went on a rant as to why it's not on breakfast menus everywhere around here!

I say, "maketh ye and yer peoples scrapple today!"


I've been settling in to my new place over the last couple days. Last night after work I went for a run in my new hood, and I kinda got lost. But mostly because the tried and true grid nature of this neighborhood ended when I crossed into Wedgewood. Dang Wedgies! Damn your curvy streets! (Or was I in Mathew Beach?!?)

Gotta go get some morning coffee before work, so this is short. Enjoy the next though:

I woke up this morning and read this. I really like the idea for my 40th birthday.


Movin' & Strokin'

What the hell happened? I haven't blogged in days! Well, you may or may not know, I have been moving to my new place.
A house up in Ravenna, the neighborhood I lived at before NZ2, with two housemates is where I now call home. NE 75th and 18th for those in the know/google map crowd.

And when one is moving, one is driving back and forth between Oly and Sea-town. And thus I did, multiple times, exhaustingly so.

But really, I have few things, so it could've been far worse, or I would have had to rent a truck. But now I am here, and off today, so I can un-pack my things. I also need a few noticeable things like a bed. But I'm happy to be here. I have a place to hang my hats.

And last night: karaoke deep into the night. Highlight: Me singing that fine song Strokin'. (Best Worst video ever.)



World Premier of Tot-Dogs. Imagine a tasty treat like a hot dog, but with taters!
Breaded croquettes, with different flavors inside, lightly fried, and topped with unique things. Hot dogs are jealous.
Flavors in the brainstorming session with Kenji, aka, Special K, included:
-Ham n cheddar, topped with egg salad
-Curry, topped with palak paneer
-A ruenben variant.
-One that's a sweet soy and green onion, topped with chopped kabli pork and kim chee.
-The loaded, loaded baked potato
-The white cheddar and cilantro, topped with vegetarian chili
-The Aloha. Spam tot-dog with spicy pineapple chutney, fried egg
-The Baron von Glutton. Topped with a hot dog and sauerkraut. Ok, this one might not make the cut....
-Bacon. Topped with macaroni and cheese.

We are currently in testing mode; we found some things we'd change already.

In other news, I bought, as Malcom would say, "a jaunty new BBQ hat!" I love the Bernie Utz hat store, which has been open since 1939. It's a nice summer hat...



Payday for me; when it's something to blog about, you know it's been a long while since income came your way.

Something was not right this morning: I woke up around 8:30, but decided I'd lay in bed listening to a podcast for a bit. And then the next thing I know, I wake up and it's noon. I went to bed at midnight, so what happened? I never sleep so long. I think I was drugged. By myself, is the only answer.
The only interesting part of my day was that I got to make gnocchi in brodo for dinner. It came out like this: rich chicken broth, cabbage, fennel and shiitake mushrooms with chicken meatballs (fennel and red pepper flake aromatics) and parmesan-herb gnocchi. With chopped fresh rocket/arugula. So nice. Fall-ish for sure, but then again, today was the 1st day in weeks I wore pants (as opposed to shorts, get your mind out of the gutter).
And! Tomorrow will be the exciting debut of tot-dogs/tater-dogs, the brand new idea from the Wani-san Food Concern! Blogging/pictures soon!



It's Tuesday; my weekend. I have lists of things to obtain for my new place to write.
I need a bed, a work table (I may make it/commission it from my dad), and some other odds and ends. And clothes. For some reason I need to buy some clothes. And shoes. Lots and lots of shoes.

Ok. One pair.

What else do I need?

But my weekend is my food refuge, the place I go to when I need to find comfort in life. It's cuisine time now. Yesterday, I enjoyed my 1st of the season Washington-grown outside tomato. With salt and pepper. Perfect. And local corn, and local sweet peppers. And great small farm beef. And cold rosé vinho verde.
This morning: Grated tomatoes on toast, jalapeño-cheddar venison summer sausage and strong coffee for 1st breakfast. Secondsies was a top pot doughnut (best vegan doughnut anywhere!), with more coffee looking at a brand new Honda Ruckus.
And lunch? Hong Kong style Wonton City noodle soup. With brisket. And for dinner? Farmers market in a bit.

And where I am not going? Any of these places.


Goals. Check.

It's August!

I have a place; formally not yet as I haven't payed anything. But in wordy agreements, I have found a place.
So that's exciting.
Another goal, check.
I have reached another level of the overall goal: Operation Bring Wani back to NZ.

Realistically, it's looking like that will be about a year away, sigh, but I anticipate it being a great year on my culinary zodiac. So it could be worse. Far worse.

So onwards and upwards kiddies.