So not many of you know but I’ve been trying my hand at Instagram cooking videos for the past couple of months. I’m no fabulous cook but I get a kick out of trying. My wonderful friend who works for The Hindu decided to feature me and a few other Instagram cooks as her first story for the MetroPlus. I am such a huge fan of The Hindu and it has always been my dream to be in it. So check me out in todays MetroPlus and here’s the link to the online version. You can also follow me on Instagram @zarinem.
PSA: This is a public service announcement requesting for smartass comebacks.
Have you guys ever been in a situation where someone says something mean to you and your mouth is open but your brain doesn’t act fast enough to come up with a smart retort but you still open your mouth and its just… air.
I’ve been in this situation far too many times than I’d like to admit. Growing up with an older brother we’d always have a battle of words and I would have the worst comebacks.
Brother: “God Zarine, you’re so fat! You’re like the Playstation game – Little Fat Princess!!”
Me: “Shut up! You’re a little fat princess!!”
Seriously, thats the best I can do. Call me a name and I will call you the SAME name, Say something meant to me and I will just say, ” You…”
Another scenario is where I think of a comeback two days after the insult has been thrown at me. So its like the usual routine – wake up, brush teeth, have breakfast, take a shower and then KABOOM! I got it! I have a comeback now, 48 hours later, and it doesn’t even matter anymore.
I’d really like to change this aspect in my life, guys. I don’t want to get burned anymore. I’ve been burnt so much that I’m blackened toast (Haha! Sorry, had to that, please don’t go).
So please, share your best comebacks, people!
Girl 1: “Oh, sorry. Excuse me.”
Girl 2: “Hey! I know you!!”
Girl 1: “I’m sorry. I don’t kn…”
Girl 2: “Yeah, we stalked you last night!”
“To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all.”
– Oscar Wilde
Steamed Shanghai vegetarian bun, Mama Ji’s, San Francisco
Shrimp stuffed mushrooms, Mama Ji’s, San Francisco
Fish with chillies and Sichuan Pepper, Mama Ji’s, San Francisco
Oh Americans and your funny foods!
I’ve seen and heard a lot about this popular ice cream place called CREAM. Since my sweet tooth is in no condition to give up I just HAD to try it. Soon enough they opened a store close to where I live and they gave free ice cream sandwiches the opening night. I couldn’t go ’cause the crowds were insane but I did go the next Friday. Considering the hugeness of the ice cream sandwich I decided to have dessert first before dinner because of this rule that I follow.
So we walked to CREAM (cardio, you know) and I chose two chocolate chip cookies with a huge scoop of pecan ice cream in-between. The cookies were warm and chewy and the ice cream was okay. But talk about getting a sugar high, this thing had me buzzing! Of course my speech wasn’t slurring from the sugar high like it did that time I ate a huge bag of gummy worms. But it was evident that the sugar had got to me.
These kinds of food amuses me. I’d rather have just cookie on its own or a scoop of ice cream.
Kids, stay away from ice cream sandwiches.
You guys, I’ve just discovered something. Remember how I had self diagnosed cynophobia? Well, I think I THINK its safe to say that I may have overcome that just a teeny tiny bit.
I’ve seen too many cute dogs here. Okay, Indian street dogs are cute too, my friend who is a savior for all animals. Just yesterday I saw the tiniest, cutest little Yorkie and he/she was walking slowly like a little old man and my heart just exploded! I really wanted to go and pet the dog! ME! If you know me then you’d know how hard it is to even have that thought enter my head.
The huge, bear like dogs still terrify me but I’m okay with Yorkies and Hush Puppies. When I say I’m okay I mean I don’t recoil in fear when a dog is walking on the opposite side and I don’t push people in front of me for protection.
Still have the irrefutable fear that I would get bit in the butt by the dog behind me.
I don’t think I will get over this fear anytime soon though.
I never thought I’d ever say this but domesticity is starting to suit me. Sure, there are days when I just want to veg out on the couch watching Netflix and eating from a never ending bag of Cheetos but, there are days when cleaning and cooking feels comforting.
One of my favorite things to do is vacuuming the floor and laundry (not folding the laundry but just dumping clothes in to the washer). I love the luxury of not thinking that these menial tasks offer. I do dishes to the sound of Netflix. I’m watching Parenthood right now. Not as good as Gossip Girl reruns but it will do. I enjoy fresh bed spreads a little too much. What I do not enjoy as much is cleaning the bathroom. I think I have every kind of toilet cleaning liquid manufactured. Cleaning products are my crack. I miss throwing water around bathrooms like we could in India.
I need to get some cleaning wipes to wipe down my leather couch. Suggestions are welcome.
I need to load some dishes in to the dish washer. Can you do it for me?
While you’re at it, can you clean the kitchen?
I need to put the clothes inside the dryer. But I don’t want to get off my couch.
Also, need to buy dish washing liquid. The tangerine flavored liquid is awesome.
I was struck with writers block for the past few days. I felt like I hit a mental dead end. I couldn’t think anymore and nothing seemed to inspire me. I’m not claustrophobic but at the time it sure as hell did feel like it. I needed sights, sounds and open spaces. So in the search for some air and much needed inspiration I took myself out to the city. Public transport has finally become my friend so taking a train to San Francisco and back wasn’t that bad.
It started raining the moment I reached the city but I didn’t let that deter me. I walked around Union Square. The main reason I love going to this touristy place is for the tourists – people watching, which is my favorite activity. Another thing I love about Union Square are the luxury stores, not that I can afford anything from there, yet, but the window displays are beautiful. I then walked in to Zara where cheerful yellow is the new Spring color. Feeling a uplifted and a little enthusiastic I took an armload of clothes to the dressing room. I then realized that I under estimated how much weight I had put on and I left feeling depressed.
After a spot of lunch and frolicking in the rain a little more I decided to call it a day. I took the train back and an hour later I was exactly where I had started – uninspired and claustrophobic.
In order to get rid of this awful mental state I was in, I dragged Jay to the beach a few days later. We drove to Carmel, a tiny seaside village. North California beaches can NOT hold up to Chennai beaches. It was a pleasant day but the sea was grey and dreary with just a tiny bit of sunlight. The vacation homes that dotted the shore were adorable, right out of an Enid Blyton novel. Tiny cafes, Parisian themed bakeries, beautiful spring time flowers but no sundal or roasted corn in sight. Nonsense.
I felt like yelling to these people, “You think this is beach??? Come to Chennai and see the original beach.” Okay you cannot wear a bikini and lay on the sand (why would you when the sad could go places it is not supposed to) in Chennai but you can totally get wet in the warm water without worrying about “Aiyo I will feel cold because the wind, water, sand is all cold.”
Anyways we had coffee, one yummy quiche and okay tasting coffee cake and drove back home. I miss tasting the sea on my lips and carrying back the sand in my slippers. I have so many good memories of rolling in the beach with my friends. Like literally rolling. That is how a trip to the beach is supposed to be.
But I did have a nice time looking at all the perfect little houses and the perfect little white people who lived in them with their perfect golden haired kids and their perfect friendly dogs.
Claustrophobia – 1
Zarine – 0
“I hate people who are not serious about meals. It is so shallow of them.”
– Oscar Wilde
Jerk Chicken, Suya African Grill, Oakland
I still haven’t typically mastered to ‘dress for the weather’. Today I wore my brown combat boots, leggings and a flannel shirt with a pashmina scarf thinking it would be perfect for a chilly evening. I didn’t leave the house before this so my knowledge on the current meteorology was exactly nada. I stepped out of my house and three minutes later, as I was walking down the street I realized I was dressed wrong. It was warm and people were wearing flip flops and tank tops. My feet were sweating in my boots and I couldn’t walk back home because I was almost at the bus stop. I felt like I would never master this art. Its stupid, if you ask me. In Madras I never had to ‘dress for the weather’. I’d just wear what I liked and would inevitably end up sweating in it. I don’t understand winter, spring and all that jazz. I only know summer. And summer is hot. And summer is sweaty.
I was thinking about this on the bus when one girl got on. I noticed she was wearing a T-shirt and white patialas. That’s what I wear to sleep but this girl made it work. Then I saw she was wearing a fluffy winter hat and I felt better about my boots. If people think wearing a scarf on the head is hot (like sweaty hot, not ooh thats hot!, hot) then wearing a woolen hat is worse. So she passed me to go sit at the back and I noticed that her white patialas were transparent, as most white patialas and pants are, and she was wearing a HOT PINK CHADDI. I wanted to yell at her, “WE CAN ALL SEE YOUR CHADDI!”, but I had to get off.
I may still be sweating inside my boots, but thank God my pants are not see through.