fun a day! pies! cats! wishes!

so maybe people already know about fun-a-day. it’s been going on for a while now. the legends i have heard indicate that it was started like ten years ago by punk kids in philly who were concerned about getting bummed out & losing their motivation to do cool, creative projects during the wintertime. so they challenged themselves to do one fun, creative thing a day & document it somehow (or maybe it would be a document in itself if it was a photograph or comic or song or something), & then they’d have a big weird art show where people could present the artifacts of how they entertained themselves & staved off the winter blahs.

jared lived in philadelphia when the fun-a-day thing started, so i think he has a certain youthful nostalgia for the concept. a few years ago, he tried to do “pun-a-day”. we both thought it was going to be a breeze because he makes so many puns anyway. but making puns on a deadline proved to be rather difficult & pun-a-day was abandoned on the third day, following an especially labored effort involving the word “annapolis”.

this year jared decided to do “pie-a-day,” inspired in part by his new year’s resolution to spend one day in 2012 eating nothing but food in pie form (ie, quiche, chicken pot pie, vegetable pie, tomato pie, etc). he made a pumpkin pie, several apple pies, a lemon meringue pie, & a boston cream pie might happen later tonight (we can eat while we watch the season premiere of “portlandia” & shift about awkwardly, unsure of exactly what the punchlines are). he experimented with a gluten-free crust when we invited some friends over for dinner, one of whom has gluten sensitivity issues. jared came up with a gluten-free oat crust using oat flour he ground himself. (he also made homemade gnocchi & pesto from scratch that night.)

but it is starting to become clear that pie-a-day is a better project for either a professional baker or a member of the 1%. it’s nearly impossible to stay stocked up on things like flour, eggs, & butter when jared is making a pie every day! also complicating issues is the fact that i am very choosy about pie. there are certain kinds of pie i love, like pecan & pumpkin. but i don’t really like fruit or berry pies. apple pie is really not my thing, & he made three of them. prior to two days ago, i had never eaten lemon meringue pie in my life. it was delicious (particularly because jared included just a hint of lemon zest in the crust), but because it can be hard to predict how an enormous mound of potato goo is going to cook down into enough homemade gnocchi to feed four people, we were kind of filling up on pie that night & i over-did it. acidic foods (orange juice, tomato sauce, lemon custard) have been making me feel really queasy lately anyway…eating four slices of pie probably didn’t help matters.

so jared has decided to call pie-a-day off early & maybe try it some other time, perhaps after preparing in advance by opening a separate savings account to pay for butter rations. i foresaw this particular wrinkle, so i decided to make my fun-a-day something that was free & required almost no effort. maybe i am perverting the underlying precepts of fun-a-day by not using it as an activity to hone a new skill. i’ve been wanting to learn how to knit & i probably could have turned that into some kind of fun-a-day. or i could try my hand at pattern-drafting or sculpting miniatures out of clay or making origami out of losing bingo cards or experimenting with new vegetable dishes or something. instead, i decided to take a photo of jared & charlotte hanging out together every day. if nothing else, it will document their relationship. & they are both so photogenic.

i have been posting the photos on facebook, but why not post them here too? jared & charlotte, week one:

january 1

january 2

january 3

january 4

january 5

january 6

january 7

if i accomplish nothing else with these photos, i hope that at least that goofy person who commented on my blog last year & said, “you call yourself a feminist, but all you ever talk about is your boyfriend!” will come back & get all huffy & pissed off again. possible avenues for criticism: “you’re reinforcing negative stereotypes about feminists being obsessed with their cats!” “you say you’re a feminist, but all you ever do is take photos of your boyfriend! & your cat!” “would it be so difficult for you to get either your boyfriend or your cat to look at the camera? what an amateur!” “you say you grew up working-class but look at all the books in that one photo! we all know working-class people don’t read!” & maybe, “you must be a stereotypical ugly feminist if you would rather post photos of some stupid cat as opposed to photos of yourself in cute outfits.”

the weather in lawrence has been ridiculously beautiful lately (please note above photo of jared & charlotte sitting beside an open door) & jared finally lowered the seat on my bike (“you must be a really shitty feminist if you can’t even lower your own bicycle seat!”) so i have been going for bike rides. i rode to the wishing bench the other day. it’s a bench sitting by the side of the road where delaware & 9th st. end, in a kind of industrial hellscape area near the railroad tracks. it’s just a few blocks away from my house, actually; it’s not like a terrifying oil abandoned oil refinery on the edge of town or anything. i sat down & made a wish. it better come true! the sign said, “you will not be disappointed.”

apparently "disappointed"/"disgusted" is my default facial expression. i also never realized until now how very ruffly this sweater is.

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