As you may know, it's Chefography week on Food TV. We've watched Emeril, Rachael Ray, Ina, Nigella, and even the second half of Sandra Lee this week. It is inevitable that whenever I watch a biography or an interview with someone, I can't help but like them more, which, I suppose, is how it should be. (Mark Ruffalo, one of my favorite actors was on Inside the Actor's Studio this week, too, though I don't know how I could've liked him more than I already did. If you've never seen You Can Count on Me, stop reading here and go directly to the video store.)
But I am eager to know the backstory, almost every time. There is context for everything, and I am usually keen to understand how and why and what people have done with their lives. Felicia, who is a great fellow-fan of Ina and Nigella, sent me a link to this article about Ina in the New York Times on Monday and I found it fascinating. Feleesh and I agreed that we both loved how Ina seemed to resist pressure to expand her offerings (a magazine, more TV shows, a line of food shops) in ways that would compromise her life. "There is a balance between having a life and having a business," Ina said, and we nod vigorously at that — yup, we knew it [wink]! Just enough is quite enough. Even in lives and with businesses that are just lived and run by us regular little peeps.
I can also watch E! True Hollywood Story, Biography, Intimate Portrait (remember that show?), or almost any interview and become interested in almost anyone, even if I thought I didn't "like" them. I missed the first twenty minutes of Sandra Lee's chefography, for instance, but they kept alluding to her difficult childhood throughout the show, and as I watched her explain her concept I found myself growing more and more understanding, even sympathetic, though we snobby Paulsons avidly harass the television when we watch her show (the ever-rotating kitchen decor makes me want to rip it all down and stomp on it hysterically, but after she explained it [the kitchen thing] I understood it). And I loved how she said she felt sorry for the make-up artist on her show because she (Sandra) cried so much and so regularly when first doing it, frustrated by the feeling that she just couldn't communicate it all accurately, as passionately as she felt it (so then I felt bad that I am always smacking my forehead every time she uses a singular verb with a plural subject, but not that bad). Hers is not the kind of cooking I aspire to do, but I understand where she's coming from. I'm glad there's room — I hope there's room — for all of it.
So all that should hopefully make you quite sympathetic to me as I point you toward an interview I gave yesterday at Create a Connection. Tara asked some really unique questions that I really enjoyed answering. That whole making vs. designing thing got me all in a tizzy, and I thought about it for the rest of the day. I don't think about the distinction that much, but now I kind of think it's all designing. Isn't it? There is a subjectivity that is inherent in making anything, which seems to qualify it, technically, but, you know, I say — however you gotta get there, just make something.
And also, Terry just wrote and said the finalists have been posted for the Softie Awards, and voting will start soon. The amazing array of work over there blows my mind. If you entered and didn't get chosen, you should not feel bad for one millisecond — it was seriously subjective and impossible to choose. Everything was so cool.
And also, about the blocking — thanks for all the discussion yesterday (see the comments on that post for lots of hints and tips). As mentioned, my 'ghan is made of mostly Baby Cashmerino on a D hook, and if you have questions about other fibers or techniques, I know that the posts over at the Granny Along will be very helpful —there is a ton of great advice and experience (as well as "before" and "after" photos of blocked pieces — I haven't taken any of mine, but I'll try) over there. I don't have enough experience outside of my own very regularly used yarns and ways to feel comfortable answering a lot of what was asked, I must say.
OH — and I almost forgot about that crostini. Forget what show I was watching on PBS, but they made something like this on Sunday. Just grill some day-old bread and rub it with the clove of raw garlic, sliced longways. Then spread it with a mixture made from 2 c. ricotta cheese, 1/2 c. grated Parmesan, and a handful of torn fresh basil. Then top it with some frothy curls of prosciutto and — manga. Yummo (as Rache would say).
'Kay. That's all. Have a good day, the first whole one of spring. More flowers here for you tomorrow, just wait.