If someone says to you, “Pumpkin Snickerdoodles with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting” and you DON’T immediately try to kiss that person and/or steal the plate of cookies they are offering, you are dead inside. Or you’re really polite. But seriously:

Snickerdoodles are good.

Pumpkin is good.

Frosting is the absolute tits.

Let’s get these kids together.

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What’s sexier than an IKEA bag?

Not much.

So strap on your meatballs and get to IKEA. Here’s what you need:

One IKEA bag
Blue tights
White T-shirt
Iron-on fabric transfer paper
Iron
Scissors
Tape
Optional: Empty IKEA meatball bags, IKEA measuring tape

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You know who does breakfast right?

The Germans.

Because here is what they serve:
Bread that was probably baked that morning in an adorable bakery by a lovely woman in an apron
Butter
Jam
Cheese
Cold cuts
Eggs
Fresh fruit
Yogurt
Coffee

And if you are lucky, Bircher Muesli. Bircher muesli is a kind of oatmeal, only it’s better than traditional gummy, hot, bland oatmeal. In order to make normal oatmeal delicious, you have to add heaps of sugar and fruit and cinnamon and milk. Not this stuff. Oats are soaked overnight and then flavored with nuts and yogurt and fruit. And it’s stupid easy to make. (Traditional Bircher Muesli recipes call for a much higher concentration of chopped fruit to grains, but hey. It’s my blog.)

Here’s what you need:

2/3 cup rolled oats (you want rolled, or old fashioned. Not steel cut.)
1 cup milk (or soy milk, or almond milk, depending on how hippie you want to get with this)
2 tablespoons chia seeds (Yeah. I go there.)
Grated apple (optional)

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Have you ever been so busy you forgot to eat? If yes, please explain to me how this is possible.

I love meals. I look forward to eating breakfast in the morning. Lunch is the happiest part of the middle of the day. Snacks are little gifts from the Food God. And dinner is your chance to celebrate the wonderful day you had. With food.

Yes, I understand skipping a meal. I also realize that a human can physically be too busy to eat. But I do not comprehend a person who can go about their day for hours and hours without food and not be constantly annoyed and hungry the entire time.

There’s a store strange, magical place in Berkeley called Urban Ore. Basically, you donate your old…anything…and Urban Ore will sell it. It’s like Goodwill, but on a larger, wilder scale. You can find treasure there, but because it is in Berkeley and because it is an “Ecopark,” you can also find rat shit and old batteries. If you love scavenging and maybe finding rad old things, or if you need a new toilet tank lid, you should definitely go.

I found this chair there:

And I loved it. But I wanted to use it, and I wanted to use it without needing to get a tetanus shot. So then I did this:

Keep reading for how I did it. Please don’t ask how long and how many trips to the hardware store it took me, because the answer is embarrassing.

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The South Yuba River in Northern California is magical; it’s accessible and beautiful and full of things that are totally awesome. A mine shaft. Naked people. Swimming holes. Stacks of rocks.

Some are more awesome than others.

Hikers can take Hoyt’s Trail to Hoyt’s Crossing to access swimming holes, a natural granite slide, and waterfalls. Badass people can take a side trail down to the river early on and rock-hop upriver. Lazy people can park, then clamber down 50 feet to the swimming hole under the bridge. Hike to Hoyt’s Crossing on Hoyt’s Trail along the South Yuba River, and this is what you will see:

Cairns

Because hippies love cairns.

They’re all over. On the riverbanks, balanced on giant boulders, and…other places. You can make your own or you can use others’ as target practice. Either way, they’re pretty fun.

Naked People

The South Yuba is frequented by nudists. Not the first swimming hole by the parking lot…but pretty much every one after that. There is a healthy mix of older people and the young, fitter ones you might actually want to see naked. Everyone at the river is friendly, but using the granite slide at Hoyt’s Crossing after the nudes is up to you.

A family trip to the Yuba might also mean you have to explain to your aunt what a Prince Albert is. Learning.

A Mineshaft

There’s an old mineshaft on river left, right below the larger of the swimming holes at Hoyt’s Crossing. When the Yuba is high, water flows through the mineshaft but probably not deeper than a few feet. At the drier end of summer, there will be some stagnant water at the entrance and the tunnel will be relatively high. The tunnel goes all the way through, but pack a headlamp if you really want to explore.

A Natural Granite Slide

If your boyfriend wears the ass of his boardshorts out on this slide, you know you’re doing something right.

Have you ever wanted to go ass sliding? Because now you can. The first question in that sentence should really be, “Have you ever seen the movie ‘Rad!‘?” So go do that and then read this post again.

Also when we were there, we made best friends with a goose. He ate en entire pumpkin bagel. And then shat on the rock we were using as a step to get out of the water.

It’s easy to find things to love and hate about living in the Bay Area. Shit. It’s easy to find things to love and hate about living anywhere. I think Northern Californians have a special struggle in this regard. Probably because I live here, but also because I’m smart. And discerning. Those are definitely different things.

So if you’re here, visit the Marin Headlands. Go to Pt. Bonita, hit up the frigid beaches, explore an old army bunker. It’s great.

But parts of the trip are not fantastic. You’ll have to battle tourists on the bridge and wait for them to take pictures in every scenic location along the trails. There will be trash too, because someone couldn’t be bothered to carry their empties back down the hill.

But maybe you’ll get to watch a turkey vulture from above, and perhaps we can all agree that makes it worthwhile.

The Bay Area has best of many worlds (like going from beach to mountains in just a few hours, good coffee, In-N-Out)…and the traffic to prove it. We have tourists and their dumb segway tours, but also we make money off them. We deal with hippies and pseudo-intellectuals and burners and hipsters on a daily basis, but we also get to complain about them. And that is some rich goddamn fodder.

Also we have fog.

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