i went back to belmont today to see some potential furnitures for sale that i saw on craig's list. by a stroke of coincidence, the house was just a block from my parents' place. my father came with me. there was a "new moss green sofa" for $300, but it wasn't what i wanted, it had big honeyjar legs, the fabric was a thick weave, and the cushions were l-shaped, cantilevered to the sofa body.

i returned to my parents' house briefly, where my sister was babysitting two dogs. the bigger dog seemed kind of mean, and even growled a bit, but she was pretty docile, and went back underneath the dining room table to hide. for some reason i'm kind of afraid of dogs now. maybe not exactly fearful, but definitely very careful around them. i think it stems from my own experience with my own dog mozart, who was a biter. the worst thing you can do is to just pet a strange dog on the head. i know if anyone ever did that with mozart, they'd get bit. but being around dogs again, i kind of wish i had a dog of my own. i know that's not possible because if i can hardly take care of myself, no way could i also care for a dog. maybe i could have a smaller pet, like a tank full of fish or maybe a cage with a gerbil or two. i rather have the fish. if a fish dies, i wouldn't feel sad about it.

compared to cambridge, belmont is like a wildlife sanctuary. from the opened dining room window i was able to pick off a few quick bird photos. they were circling the birdfeeder, which i was surprised to see was still full of sunflower seeds.

my father drove me back to cambridge, where i had cereal for lunch. the remaining daylight quickly dwindled away, and by nightfall i went back to bed to take a little early evening nap before dinner. i drifted in and out of sleep, watching a documentary on the history of gangs in america. feeling too hungry for slumber, i got up and made dinner.

tonight's meal: linguine with spicy parsley-clam sauce. it actually turned out okay, there was no major disasters. maybe next time i might try to use less chicken broth (the recipe's for 4 servings, i was trying to adapt it to just one). maybe not so much parsley (i had already thrown away half of the parsley that i'd chopped), and not so much onion. it wasn't spicy enough, even after i sprinkled some more hot pepper flakes. i think the spice got drowned out in the cup of broth. after the addition of flour and some minutes of simmering, the sauce thickened up. combined with the linguine, it wasn't bad.

an analogy for cooking
last night, unable to sleep, i came up with an analogy for cooking. cooking is a language. the letters of this language are the ingredients. words represent the different steps. a sentence is a recipe, a paragraph a multi-dished meal. at this stage in the game, i have a pretty good knowledge of the letters, but not all of them. a few letters i still don't know what they do or how to use them. as for words, i know some of the basic, like i can say "hello" or "good morning" in cookinese. using this rudimentary vocabulary of words, i'm able to parse sentences. most of the time the sentences are still broken, i'm not totally clear on the cooking grammar. every night i try to form a new sentence, using old words, sometimes new ones. occasionally i get adventurous and i try my hand at stringing together a bunch of sentences to form a paragraph. my dream is to one day form perfect coherent sentences using sophisticated and elegant words, and then put them together into a sweet paragraph. the language of cooking, it's a constant work in progress. to think, prior to moving to cambridge, i could hardly speak the language!

boys from brazil confusion finally, this is what's on the history channel tonight, according to tv guide (the one with the new charmed sisters on the cover):

boys from brazil - documentary 3:00
(british; 1992) study of transvestism in rio de janeiro. directed by john-paul davidson.

surely they must mean the 1978 movie of the same name starring gregory peck and laurence olivier about an international nazi conspiracy to clone adolf hitler? although the topic of transvestism is fascinating, and a supposed three hour documentary to boot, i don't quite think the history channel is the proper venue with the correct demographics for such a film. imagine grandpa's surprise when he catches an eyeful of tropical shemales! how this mix-up could've happen is kind of weird, there really is a brazilian transvestism documentary called "boys from brazil" (only an hour long), but it's so obscure, an internet search hardly reveals any information about it. so how come such an obscure documentary would get mixed up with a more widely known movie after nazi cloning? only the editors at tv guide would know the answer. could the fact that steve guttenberg (of can't stop the music fame, 1980) has a minor role as a freelancing nazi war criminal investigator have anything to do with it?