Turning a Leaf With a Turned Leaves

Doesn’t happen every year, but sometimes around now I find a keeper leaf — not perfect, but perfectly imperfect.

I put it in the old Random House Unabridged Dictionary my folks bought for me as a kid. I remember how it sat on a stand in my bedroom and the afternoon light would make it fun to look up words.

Always take a second to admire my full name on the title page, written in my Mother’s beautiful cursive.

Homage To Nature

Sometimes the ocean in which we are the merest of ripples can deliver tiny joys. Today on our walk through the park, after seeing the rather yucky slug on the walkway, I mentioned that it seemed like years and years since we had seen any Woolly Bear caterpillars and how I remained fascinated (in fun) with their ability to predict the upcoming winter.

We then proceeded to see six of them, all very small, four edging along and two squished. Still have a little tingle from my words made fuzzy flesh.

Where To Eat in Harvard Square This Summer

(Before the students mob the place and make it impossible to get in.)

Hokkaido Ramen Santouka

The “small” sized combo plates will be plenty for most folks. Be sure to put your soft-boiled egg into the ramen (delicious enrichment!). The crispy, deep-fried chicken will sate all your memories of what this should taste like. [Edit] Lightest, least-gooey gyoza wraps ever — also, stuffing not mush, has meat texture. [Edit Edit] Website reference to families is spot-on. We saw lots of children enjoying the food as much as their parents and relatives.

Act before the first moving van arrives.

A Slice on Apples

For my money, the Roxbury Russet can be one of the most delicious, complex heirloom apples — and it comes with a natural conversation starter in that it was the first North American apple and etc. etc. But the ones I’ve found around here haven’t had much character this year. All changed this weekend.

Here’s the scoop for locals: go out to Allendale Farm and grab a passel of their own Roxbury Russets. Good as any I can remember tasting.

Three Biggest Music Mysteries …

… that I also consider counterproductive for the music they concern.

  1. This weird, pious atmosphere that keeps attaching itself to pre-electric country blues. This is sacred stuff, man, esp. treasured because “non-commercial.” Reminds me of the worst aspects of the early-’60s folk revival. Didn’t Bob Dylan point out that that sort of reverence was a dead end?
  2. A closely related effect applies internationally. That the purest, noncommercial folk forms from the most isolated corners of the land are the true music of the place. Genius innovations from city performers are just tainted junk.
  3. The only time anybody wants to play, listen to, or write about reggae and offshoots is during the hottest weeks of the summer.