Monday, March 31, 2014

Quotes from The Catcher in the Rye

Currently, I'm reading The Catcher in the Rye. I haven't finished it yet, but I wanted to highlight some worthy quotes: 

"If you thought about him too much, you wondered what the heck he was still living for…But if you thought about him just enough and not too much, you could figure it out that he wasn't doing too bad for himself."

"I mean it. I'll be alright. Don't worry about me…I mean it. I'll be all right. I'm just going through a phase right now. Everybody goes through phases and all, don't they?" 

"If I were a piano player or an actor or something and all those dopes thought I was terrific, I'd hate it. I wouldn't even want them to clap for me. People always clap for the wrong things. If I were a piano player, I'd play it in the goddam closet." 

"Goddam money. It always ends up making you blue as hell." 

"He was singing that song, 'If a body catch a body coming through the rye.' He had a pretty little voice, too. He was just singing for the hell of it, you could tell. The cars zoomed by, brakes screeched all over the place, his parents paid no attention to him, and he kept on walking next to the curbing singing 'If a body catch a body coming through the rye." It made me feel better. It made me feel not so depressed any more."

"you kept wondering what the hell would happen to all of them. When they got out of school and college, I mean. You figured most of them would probably marry dopey guys. Guys that always talk about how many miles they get to a gallon in their goddam cars. Guys that get sore and childish as hell if you beat them at golf, or even just some stupid game of pingpong. Guys that are very mean. Guys that never read books. Guys that are very boring." 

"If a girl looks swell when she meets you, who gives a damn if she's late? Nobody." 

"If you do something too good, then, after a while, if you don't watch it, you start showing off. And then you're not as good any more." 

"Did you ever get fed up?…I mean did you ever get scared that everything was going to go lousy unless you did something? I mean, do you like school, and all that stuff?" 


Salinger, J.D. The Catcher in the Rye. New York, NY: The New American Library of World Literature, Inc., 1953. Print.  

Friday, March 28, 2014

Don't Lead, Run

The snow was everywhere, mixing with the brown slush as we ran around in circles, knowing we'd get back eventually, just not knowing exactly how…or when. Outside on those crunchy white roads, a burning, stiff feeling spread through my feet and hands, and even the pale yellow lights felt cold, contained in little glass balls on tall hallow lamp posts, polluting the air with static brightness. It hadn't been so dark before we left. Eventually we stopped running and debating whether to cut through the massive white field on our right or wait and find a road further down instead.


It's okay to get lost. Getting lost doesn't make us incompetent, we make ourselves feel incompetent. 

I once got lost for three hours in a really big city. It was raining and I had a whole bunch of luggage with me. I am an expert in the directionally challenged department. When I was younger, I asked my mom to drop me off five minutes from my house, I wanted to run home. I got lost...five minutes from my house.

It's okay to get lost. It's okay to screw things up, to be terrible at something, to fail miserably, to look stupid, and to blush uncontrollably.

I put a lot of unnecessary pressure on myself to constantly perform exceptionally. Here's the conclusion I've come to: I shouldn't want to be exceptional, to stand out, or to lead. It's better to blend in, accept an anonymous existence, and embrace the fact that I'm such a small part of everything else. Strength comes from weakness (getting lost), or so I'm told.

Like most things, I relate leading to running. It is better to be lost than to lead. I don't want to lead. If I am considered a leader on the cross country team, it's only because I love to run. I don't want to lead, but I can't tell you how much I love running. I don't mean to make running more than it is, running isn't spiritual, but we are. There's more to life than running, but I think running brings more to our lives...

I don't want to lead, but I can't tell you how much I love running.

Leading our team was never about me or my ability to lead us, it was and always has been about running. It's much more than that, but running is fundamentally our action, not an ideology; it's something we put into practice everyday. Years from now, even after I have stopped, our team will continue running season after season and become a group of ladies I'll never meet, practicing the same thing I did everyday.

We could say it's the team that's most important, and it is, but the team would not come together without our ability to run; it will outlive all of us. I love running, but there were days (even seasons) when I really dreaded it. I have come to believe it's only when I actually love to run, when I understand the goodness of even the monotonous, frustrating, impossible days of daily practice, that I should lead. I should lead only because I have loved the daily action. I am not really a leader, I only love to run, and by loving, I invite others to join in and do the same.

Running will teach a lot about living, too. 


Sunday, March 16, 2014

Good Things to Know About Loose Leaf Tea

Try it once and it's hard to go back to the bag. Since my first taste of the stuff in China, a whole world of exquisite natural flavor has been opened up to me, and the good news is I don't have to fly across the ocean to get ahold of this savory goodness, loose leaf tea is here in the States too.

I'll take the liberty to make a shameless plug for Teavana. There's other loose leaf teas out there, but Teavana's product is excellent (if not expensive). I'm not an expert, but I think their tea is worth the price tag.

Turns out there's perks to graduating from college. Along with a diploma, I received a graduation gift:

Teavana's Perfect Tea Maker

It's fascinating. Simply spoon in the tea, pour hot water into the top, let the tea steep 3-4 minutes, place it on the lip of a mug, and tea flows out the bottom. 

Along with the tea maker, I received the portable Teavana Contour Tumbler 

 Great for on-the-go. . .which I usually am.

After trying every tea brewed in the store, I decided on two flavors: Youthberry and Wild Orange Blossom. I loved the combination of the two, it is unlike any other tea I have ever tasted. 

 Teavana's German Rock Sugar enhances rather than overpowers the tea's flavor.
I think the added zing is especially great with ice. 

10 Teas to Try

These are the many perks of loose leaf tea. Teavana makes teas in most if not all of these categories. 

“When tea becomes ritual, it takes its place at the heart of our ability to see greatness in small things." ― Muriel BarberyThe Elegance of the Hedgehog

“Some people will tell you there is a great deal of poetry and fine sentiment in a chest of tea.” 
― Ralph Waldo EmersonLetters and Social Aims

“There are those who love to get dirty and fix things. They drink coffee at dawn, beer after work. And those who stay clean, just appreciate things. At breakfast they have milk and juice at night. There are those who do both, they drink tea.” 
― Gary Snyder


Thursday, March 13, 2014

Adventures with Cooking

It's spring break! Instead of retreating into the sunshine and warm weather of the southern hemisphere, I'm in subfreezing-degree Michigan experimenting in my mother's kitchen. I pin so many recipes on Pinterest, now I'm finally getting around to trying a few:

Thursday: Black Bean Burger with Salsa Fresca 
& Avocado Crema

Get the RECIPE

I'll be honest, it took me an hour and a half to make. Still, I had fun! I made the burgers, the avocado spread, and the salsa. I absolutely loved the taste of everything, even if the rest of the family wasn't totally sold. ;)

Friday: Pizza

Get the RECIPE

This is the picture from the website. I bought all the ingredients for this recipe and then realized Walmart doesn't carry eggplant, which was supposed to substitute the bread crust. So...I just copped out and bought a pizza crust...pre-made. Where does one buy eggplant?

Saturday: Pad Thai

Get the RECIPE 

Since coming home from Thailand, I can't get enough Thai food. I am so pumped to make this, it's one of my absolute favorites. I found all the ingredients in the Asian section at Walmart.

Dessert: Chocolate Pudding 

Get the RECIPE

With the extra avocados from the black bean burger meal, I'm hoping to try this pudding recipe. It looks so good...and easy to make. :)

And that's it! Maybe I'll post pictures of the final products of these recipes, unless they're Pintrocities, then maybe not.