— Stephen Grosz in The Examined Life. AKA: the focus of all my attention on a flight from JFK to LAX last night. If you yearn for a book that will keep you thinking long after you turn the last page, this is it.
- Me: I've started oil pulling. You swish coconut oil around in your mouth for 20 minutes every day, and it pulls away all the bacteria and makes your skin glow.
- Friend: Wow. You've really embraced LA, haven't you?
I just read British documentary-maker Louis Theroux’s BBC article about living in Los Angeles. My eyes lit up at the following quote:
I adopted the LA practice of cycling simply for pleasure - “going biking”. (In the same way as Angelenos don’t walk anywhere but love to “hike”.)
"Hiking", yes! I myself engage in this favored Los Angeles activity every week or so. But as someone who grew up next door to the Rocky Mountains, I’ve had a confusing time wrapping my head around the SoCal version. For me, hiking = climbing a mountain. It usually takes several hours, involves significant elevation gain, and delivers stunning views. Bear spray is optional, but encouraged. In LA, "hiking" = a long-ish walk in a place surrounded by trees or desert, not urban infrastructure. When hiking here, I often find myself secretly thinking, "I wonder when the real hike will begin?"
Speaking of New York City to Los Angeles food transplants…while walking down Abbot Kinney Friday night I spotted the pastel yellow vision that is the Van Leeuwen ice cream truck. I had no idea that my favorite NY ice cream purveyor (pistachio for the win!) was in LA. As it turns out, it was only their 6th night in the city. I’m liking this trend.
While browsing my seemingly endless piles of books recently I came across Cheryl Strayed’s anthology of letters from her much adored Dear Sugar column. I (re) devoured the nearly 400 page book in less than 24 hours. I forgot just how goose-bumpy her writing makes me feel. I love the piece titled "Tiny Beautiful Things" most of all - a letter from fortysomething Cheryl to her twentysomething self. It contains perfectly contained gems such as:
“Don’t lament so much about how your career is going to turn out. You don’t have a career. You have a life. Do the work. Keep the faith.”
"The useless days will add up to something. The shitty waitressing jobs. The hours writing in your journal. The long meandering walks. The hours reading poetry and story collections and novels and dead people’s diaries and wondering about sex and God and whether you should shave under your arms or not. These things are your becoming."
And my personal favorite that has become my personal mantra as of late: "Your life will be a great continous unfolding."