Sunday, May 31, 2009

I've Been Tagged!

Hi, it's good to see you again. I'm back from New York - we all had a great time and arrived home loaded down with Playmobil toys and, well, beads (guess what belongs to whom). I had the opportunity to sit down over coffee with the wonderful Andrew Thornton while there. These lovely pendants are from him - the one on the right contains a piece of sea glass from Hawaii and is stamped with the words "the river says swim". Beautiful, eh? And I've actually been wanting a bronze owl pendant (which always reminds me of the goddess Athena), so I'm very excited about that - thanks again, Andrew!

Anyway, while I was away, Andrew tagged me on his blog (go here to read his entry) - I thought I'd go ahead and play today:

What is your current obsession?
Motherhood - it doesn't come easily to me, so I tend to think about it (and the object of my motherhood, the Short One) a lot. Hopefully, the SO benefits rather than suffers from all this. I guess he'll let me know one way or the other, eh?

What is your weirdest obsession?
Well, related to the above, we're finishing up potty training right now, so, yeah, I'm quite focused on the two "P's"...

What are you wearing today?
A linen skirt that my mother found for me on sale through the J. Peterman catalog (the best clothing catalog ever - I will just sit down and read it like a book, I find the descriptions so amusing) and a cotton tee. I have a bunch of these linen skirts in different colors (it was a great sale) that I've been waiting to wear since April. I finally gave in and started wearing them a few days before Memorial Day. No one really pays attention to those seasonal rules anymore, do they? Do they?

What's for dinner?
Tofu jigae (tofu in spicy sauce with green onions, pork and pork broth, the way we make it here) for the adults and the SO's version of mac and cheese - plain noodles with a little butter and lots of parma reggiano (he won't eat anything "wet" looking except ice cream right now) for the SO.

What would you eat for your last meal?
Beijing style seitan, pickled shredded papaya, coconut rice and a very berry blast smoothie from Gobo, my favorite restaurant (the dish is on the lunch menu, if anyone is interested).

What's the last thing you bought?
The Playmobil ice cream store super set. (The last thing I bought for myself was a beautiful strand of Baltic "sea" amber.)

What are you listening to right now?
"Fall at Your Feet" by Crowded House, "Buildings and Bridges" by Ani DiFranco and "Solsbury Hill" by Peter Gabriel.

What is your favorite ice-cream flavour?
Red bean mochi ice cream (the kind that actually comes served as a little Japanese mochi cake filled with ice cream). Yum.

What do you think of the person who tagged you?
Andrew Thornton is a supremely talented designer with a wonderful "eye" - I love viewing the world as he sees it, which is one of the reasons I visit his blog daily. He is also the perfect person with whom to sit down for a nice cup of coffee and a chat.

If you could have a house totally paid for, fully furnished anywhere in the world, where would you like it to be?
England. Some of the happiest years of my life were spent there working on my M.Phil. in Renaissance lit.

If you could go anywhere in the world for the next hour, where would you go?
Hmm, I'm with Andrew on this one - Hawaii, although I'd like to spend more than an hour there, too!

Which language do you want to learn?
Japanese. I'm a bit of an otaku - I like Japanese manga, fiction and pop culture. I would like to be able to read a lot of this stuff in the original language.

What's your favorite quote (for now)?
Insist on yourself; never imitate - Ralph Waldo Emerson

What's your favorite colour?
Garnet, ruby, cranberry - really, any warm, rich shade of red.

What is your favorite piece of clothing in your own wardrobe?
An embroidered silk kimono I purchased in Hawaii while on my honeymoon.

What is your dream job?
Well, a job involving writing and design...

What's your favorite magazine?
It's too tough for me to pick a particular beading magazine, because I pretty much read them all, including but not limited to BeadStyle, Stringing, Step by Step Beads, Art Jewelry etc., etc.. Of the general magazines relating to adornment that may include jewelry and beads, I enjoy reading Ornament and Belle Armoire.

If you had £100 now, what would you spend it on?
Books. Making Connections: A Handbook of Cold Joins for Jewelers and Mixed-Media Artists by Susan Lenart Kazmer has been on my list for a while now. I'm also interested in Barbara Becker Simon's Metal Clay Beads: Techniques, Projects, Inspiration (A Lark Jewelry Book). And let's not forget Cynthia Thornton's Enchanted Adornments: Creating Mixed-Media Jewelry with Metal, Clay, Wire, Resin & More coming out this fall!

Favorite designer?
I don't think I've ever discussed this on the blog (but I should - soon, soon), but there are many Native American jewelry designers, especially Navajo, that I admire. I particularly follow the work of Lee Yazzie, Victor Beck and Marco Begaye.

Do you admire any one's style?
Well, I don't really follow a single person's style. I really like the style promoted by clothing designer Eileen Fisher - simple lines, vaguely Asian in flavor, extremely comfortable (this last is quite important to me).

Describe your personal style?

What are you going to do after this?
Go shopping for a new DVD player. Ours finally bit the dust yesterday and the SO has been wanting to watch "Bolt". I wouldn't mind watching "Bolt" either, actually.

What are your favorite movies?
"Spirited Away", "Howl's Moving Castle", "Amelie", "Beckett", "A Man for All Seasons" and "The Lion in Winter".

What are you reading now?
I'm re-reading Barry Hughart's Bridge of Birds: A Novel of an Ancient China That Never Was - a beautiful fantasy novel about Number Ten Ox, Li Kao, who has a "slight flaw" in his character, and Jade Pearl, a woman with a smile so wonderful it could fell an ox at ten paces. I'm also reading Conspirator: (Foreigner #10) by C.J. Cherryh, part of my all-time favorite science fiction series.

What's your favorite fruit?
Cactus fruit (not be be confused with cactus pear). I only ever found this in England in the tonier Waitrose grocers and at Fortnums. It's spiky and bright yellow on the outside and has white flesh with black seeds on the inside. It is very sweet. I don't know if it goes by any other name.

What inspires you?
My son, always. What I read, especially Shakespeare and Donne. The view from my window. Really, what doesn't inspire me?

What's your favorite work of art?
Renoir's "Luncheon of the Boating Party". Well, perhaps not my favorite, but it's definitely the most pivotal for me. I had virtually no interest in art as a child (apart from scribbling with my own crayons, if you know what I mean) until I saw the original when it was touring the United States with the Phillips Collection.

The rules:
1. Respond and rework; answer the question on your blog, replace one question that you dislike with a question of your own invention.
2. Tag eight other people.

Hmm, yes, well, here are my eight victims:

Jean Yates
Erin Prais-Hintz
Sue of Sue Beads
Cindy Gimbrone
Barbe Saint John
Carter Seibels
Mary Harding
Tammy Powley

Thank you for visiting and reading this!


Andrew Thornton said...

Thanks so much for all your kind words! It was a treat sitting down with you for a cup of coffee! I could have chit-chatted forever. Next time you come to New York, you should reserve a day for Brooklyn! It's like a strange sub-continent of Manhattan and is filled with its own activities and adventures. It'd also be fun to squeeze in some studio time.

P.S. You totally made my mouth water when I read your last meal request and I'm thinking that I might need to make a trip to the West Village in the near future!

Melissa J. Lee said...

That sounds great! I haven't spent much time in Brooklyn - I seem to recall my legal ethics exam was held there (on the way back, I took the A train back to Harlem and couldn't resist humming the tune). Studio time sounds fun, too!

Oh, do try out Gobo! The restaurant was started by the sons of the owners of Zen Palate. The menu is different, of course, but the devotion to fresh ingredients served in tasty ways remains the same. We stumbled across the place quite by accident right after they opened - I think we were actually heading to the Pink Teacup (another favorite of ours for soul food) and ended up getting diverted.

Cyndi L said...

I'm so jealous that you two got to meet! I wanna come too next time :-)

Melissa J. Lee said...

Hi Cyndi - we should really have a big get together, right??

Cindy Gimbrone said...

ohohoh! Good think I wandered over to you blog - I'm tagged! Whee!

This is a great post - I learned so much about you. A very interesting read! Thanks for sharing and tagging me!


Jean Katherine Baldridge said...

Oh Melissa! I am tagged! I was so HOPING you would tag me!!! Thank you! This one seems like fun!
PS: sometime, when I am talking to my etiquette expert aunt, I will ask her if there are any fashion rules left concerning when you can start wearing certain fabrics. hee hee! :) I wonder what she will say?

thank you again, I shall answer this now! check my blog in a few minutes!