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Let's Panic: The Book!

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How to Endure and Possibly Triumph Over the Adorable Tyrant
who Will Ruin Your Body, Destroy Your Life, Liquefy Your Brain,
and Finally Turn You
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Written by Alice Bradley and Eden Kennedy

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At LET'S PANIC ABOUT BABIES, Eden Kennedy and I share our hard-won wisdom and tell you exactly what to think and feel and do, whether you're about to have a baby or already did and don't know what to do with it.

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« And here I thought the suburbs were boring. | Main | Yesterday--when all my troubles seemed right in my lap. »
Wednesday
Jun142006

Whining finally gets the respect it deserves.

So these guys decided that this post had some sort of merit (really?), and they’ve chosen it as a reading for their Blogsday 2006. Anyone who knows me knows that I love the James Joyce (my god, in my high school yearbook my senior quote was from Ulysses—how did everyone not punch me?) (Although at least it wasn’t from Finnegan’s Wake. "She has a gift of seek on site and she allcasually ansars helpers, the dreamydeary. Heed! Heed! Go Class of '87!"), so it’s a great honor to be included in this latter-day take on Bloomsday. Apparently an actor will read my words, adding some whimpering where appropriate. Maybe at the end she’ll burst into heaving sobs! Oh, I hope!

It will be airing on your local NPR affiliate, probably Thursday night. I know it’s on WNYC Thursday at 9, but the rest of you will just have to look it up. I’ll be sitting by my radio, cringing.

Meanwhile, since writing that post, I’ve found myself despite my best efforts actually liking it around here. This house is so pretty that I want to lick it. (I hold off, because of the lead paint.) I keep trying to avoid the neighbors but somehow they find me and then I end up liking them, damn it. I have an herb garden and so far everything is still alive. (Except my basil tastes like nothing. Readers, you’ve helped me with every other aspect of my life, so tell me: why would basil taste like, well, leaves? Instead of the explosive flavor sensation I have long known it to be?) And Henry starts camp in two weeks! Every-day-for-four-hours camp! Much-cheaper-than-the-babysitter camp!

Posts will be light around here for the next month, as I focus on other projects for a while and also try not to get fired. I’ll be posting more pictures on Flickr when I remember, including my new series, “Weed or Something Else?”

Reader Comments (65)

Alice--I'm glad that things are going better today. One day at a time.
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterStacie
Aaaah! I'm glad you're having a better day. I've got no clue about the basil.
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterMonica
They picked a fabulous post. It made me cry. I miss Brooklyn (and Manhattan) right down to my bones. And I've been in NJ for almost 3 years, and in spite of myself, I kind of like it here too. Aren't parking lots and left turn arrows the most wonderful inventions ever created?

Congrats on the NPR slot. I'll be listening.

As for the basil, I eat the stuff my Mom grows in her backyard in Brooklyn. :-)
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterNotorious M.I.L.F.
Jersey soil is good for tomatoes and corn - I'm thinking Basil might be a little much for its Sandy Soils.

And a house that's good enough to lick, sounds fabulous? Very Charlie in the Chocolate Factory meets Hansel and Gretel.
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterMotherhood Uncensored
did your basil get flowers on it before you used it? sometimes when that happens the basil leaves lose their flavor because they stop producing oils and concentrate on the flowers...I keep pinching the middle section of my basil out so that no flowers bloom...basil can be tough because it needs lots of sun and warmth...good luck with the garden!!
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterjenn
huge Joyce fan here also!
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterchristine
Yeah - once you let basil flower, it gets bland. Pinch off the buds before they flower to keep the zest in.

- M
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered Commentermarcheline
I LOVE the sound of the new series! Kind of like my series of, "how many seeds can I plant and then kill by neglect!"

At least I can collect. Collecting seeds is fun!
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered Commenteramy
No flowers yet on the basil! None! Maybe it's not mature enough? Or am I just expecting too much?
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered Commenteralice
Oooh, I hate to sound like the voice of well, not doom, but gloom at least. If your house really is old enough to have had lead paint (particularly on its exterior, and that's not so far back in time), have your soil tested.

I live in a lovely urban neighborhood in Pittsburgh, and I know neighbors grow veggies around here. But after we had our soil tested, we figured that we just didn't need to feed the kids lead pesto.

Unless of course you are gardening in containers with "clean" dirt. Then never mind, carry on, and may your basil be tastier. (Try lemon basil? It makes an amazing pesto.)
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterJen
Yeah, it's a rather large raised container in the backyard. No lead in there.
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered Commenteralice
I can't wait for your flickr stream on Weed or Something Else. I'm no master gardener, but I do enjoy flowers and perennials - maybe I can help!One thing, though - I don't really know how to access the flickr stream. Help!

June 14, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterelsimom
It's http://www.flickr.com/photos/finslippy/.

June 14, 2006 | Unregistered Commenteralice
There are loads of varieties of basil. Before you buy and plant it, surreptitiously pinch off a leaf. Crush it, smell it and then eat it. Look for a plant that has the full richness of flavor you're seeking.

Then grow it on the sly for me. A plant doesn't last 1/2 an hour in the outdoors out here. Ground squirrels rip it out just for sport.
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterLin
Four hours a day? Everyday? What are you doing to do with all of the silence?
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterAngela
the more you water herbs the less flavor they have.
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered Commentermalin
I am glad you're liking it more. Now that it's not raining 24/7, things should seem a bit brighter. I want to get down there and visit you (and bring Sway and fam) this summer. I can tour and pontificate about your garden as if I know what I'm talking about, and won't that be fun for everyone?

Basil needs a lot of sun. And pinch off the flower budlets as soon as they appear.
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterDebl
Hey, congratulations on catching Chris Lydon's eye! That's a wonderful program. Will be listening Thursday night.

I was on that show last year: I sat downstairs in the dark glued to my radio, listening to an actor read my words. I'm embarrassed to admit how thrilled I was.
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterBihari
Basil doesn't grow in little jars with twist-off lids??
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterMir
Dude! You're on NPR. It's my dream to be on NPR.

Reunion was cool. Except it was especially cool if you were invited to party down on twist cap wine with the class of 1976 at their disco ball where they blew the amps and sang the rest of the music underneath the smoke-wisps emitting from the speaker sets in their disco dresses, like my class was. I don't know what your class did. Maybe they grew basil, and played music to it to see the effects on the taste.
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterlis
Yay for you! That was a great post. So raw.

Especially without any paragraph breaks. Heh.
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterLena
About the basil, it could also be too much fertiliser - I always buy organic herbs because the un-organic taste of nothing (organic plants are grown more slowly with less (and natural)fertilisers). I don't know whether you add fertiliser when you water it but try leaving it out if you do. Otherwise, buy a new plant and like the other person says, taste it first :)
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered Commenteranja
Damn I wish there'd been a "Weed or Something Else" encyclopedia when we first moved into this house. I've seen gardener friends fight back tears when they heard my description of that "ratty plant" I just destroyed. So far, that I know of, I've gotten rid of phlox, bleeding heart, blue fescue (hey, it looks like GRASS) and god knows what else. I look forward to the new flicker photos....
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered Commentersusies
Oh rocks, Penelope. Tell us in plain words. What your Agenbite of Inwit is preventing you from saying is Henry's going away opens up space for a bloomin' Boylan. We'll never tell.
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterAnne in New Jersey
I haven't watered the herbs too much, but I did once use fertilizer--before I found out that was a Bad Thing to do. Although I did use gardening soil that contains fertilizer, so, crap. Maybe that's it?
June 14, 2006 | Unregistered Commenteralice

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