Wednesday, April 1, 2015 April

FEELING:  Confused beyond words!  I'm so uncertain of what my future should be like.  It's almost completely crippling!  But I'm really upbeat about it!

WATCHING:  I've been eagerly awaiting each new RuPaul's Drag Race and devouring the entire Broad City!

LISTENING TO:  Lots of bouncy new wave, especially Morissey!

READING:  I started Love in the Time of Cholera again and I'm totally loving it!  Also, my friend turned me onto the new run of Wonder Woman which I absolutely adored.

WORKING ON:  Nothing major just figuring out what to do with the rest of my life and all that, no big deal.

THINKING ABOUT:  taking risks.

EATING:  Trader Joe's Hummus Medley rules my life right now.  I've continued making pickles and recently perfected homemade YUZU ice cream!

LOOKING FORWARD TO:  Summer?  Summer vacation?  I'm really excited to get back into giving ghost tours again.

MAKING ME HAPPY:  Weekends in Brooklyn, warmer temps and Spring Break woo-hoo!

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Trader Joe's Tuesday: Organic Polenta

Trader Joe's Organic Polenta

Tastes Like:
  Corn sausage.  Cornmeal patties?  Polenta is kind of a world unto itself.

Great With:  Tomato sauce, salsa, cheese, curry powder - corn is a great blank-slate to sauce it up on!

Perfect For:  Gluten-free "pizza bites" - we did this with tomato sauce and black garlic on slices of seared polenta and it was divine.  If you don't gluten, and miss pizza bites, you have to try this!

Must Know:  Gluten-free, right on the label!

Costs:  $1.99 for a big amount - I ate this for breakfast, lunch, and dinner one day!  If'n you're looking for something indulgent and unique that won't break the bank, it's strongly recommended.  From what I hear, polenta is usually on the pricey side and rather difficult, so having this the easy was is a joy!  Go forth and polenta!!!

Monday, March 30, 2015

Girls With Slingshots

Curse me now, thank me later:  Danielle Corsetto's engaging webcomic Girls With Slingshots just wrapped up after ten years.  Ten years!  Over a thousand strips for your obsessive pleasure.  Once you get comfortable clicking your way through the archives, you'll be addicted to your screen.  Curse me now, thank me later.

It would be impossible to capture a decade of serialized comics, I will say that sex-positive genderqueer feminist comic lovers will rejoice at being able to flip through these stories where loveable characters face issues of love, depression, commitment, and overcoming barriers at work, with family, with society, and with each other.  It sounds pretty heavy, huh?  Throw in a talking Scottish cactus, add a dash of bitters and you've got a recipe for a cocktail of fun.

Thank you, Danielle Corsetto, for ten years of Girls with Slingshots!  Everyone else, enjoy these archives as much as I did, starting right at the start.  Curse me now, thank me later.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Sunday Stealing: The Dirty Dozen

1. This weather is really..... 
truly, deeply...depressing.  Call it "Fifty Days of Grey." 

2. You think you've seen it all, you should see me.... 
give a ghost tour.  That's my jam.

 3. I'm sure you would still love me even if... 
you watched me dance.  I'm not saying I'm a bad dancer...

 4. I think I have finally realized...
  that hating yourself doesn't make other people like you more.

 5. Since the last time we linked up... 
I got a lead on a job for next year!  You'd never believe it, I scarcely do, but I don't want to jinx it so SHHH!!!

 6. I get super embarrassed... 
when people pay me compliments.  I don't know what to do. 

 7. I really thought by now... 
I'd have stability.  Income enough to support myself, safe and clean apartment, the trappings of "adulthood".  Who knows anymore?

8. If I thought no one would read it, I would write about... 
WRONG QUESTION!  If I thought everyone would read it, I would write about sex positivity, atheism, and my funny personal memories.  Would anyone read that?

9. I knew I was in the wrong place... 
when I worked a single shift at a vet's office.  Quit that day.  Can't put animals to sleep.  Nor see them in pain.  Nope.  Just can't do it.

10. I am so not above... 
taking selfies in public.  I hate that they're called that.  Before they were easy, they were "self-portraits".  Now it's vain and self-centered to want to take pictures of yourself.  So what, dude?  Who's getting hurt by other people's selfies?  I take one in the park by my school like almost every day.  If the weather is nice.  You don't know me, you don't know my life, I'm going to step to the side so I'm not in the way, angle the camera and smile.  Get over it.

11. Let's pretend... 
the past is in the past, and what matters is how you live this moment.  And this one.  And the next.  And the one after that.

12. Just you wait... 
until summer.  I'm just trying to hold on until summer.  31 is going to kick so much ass!

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Macy's Flower Show 2015: Art in Bloom

On yet another grey Saturday in March, I woke up and declared to my still-uncaffeinated boyfriend, "I need to see some flowers."

Behold, the Macy's 2015 Flower Show.  The perfect antidote for chilly, drizzly days!  Fight the crowds to feast your pupils on bright colours and awesome installations! 

This year's theme was "Art in Bloom".  The exhibits of flowers were each influenced by a different famous artist!  The first one on display right inside the door was a giant Michaelangelo's David, with colourful projections changing all over his body!

I think my favourite was the Picasso arrangement, which was hard to photograph with the escalator behind it. 

This show just made me really want houseplants.  I'm obsessed with this Aechmea fasciata!  Even though I'm terrible with plants.  I have the exact opposite of my mother's green thumb!

Keeping with the theme of Art in Bloom, this guy was getting painted all over his body in the makeup department!  He looks kind of amused here, but leading up to this shot, he was downright sulking.  I don't know whether it's because the brushes tickled, the tourists snapping photos was getting to him, or maybe he just wasn't thrilled with that shade of cyan.

Macy's Flower Show happens yearly, for only two weeks, when we need it most - these dreary early-spring days.  April showers bring May flowers, so hopefully we'll see lots more in the coming months!  But for now, here's some of my favourite close-ups from the visit:

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Street Harassment Selfie

To everyone who actually buys that myth that looking "too hot" and walking alone late at night on the street is the reason women get harassed:  below is a picture I snapped of mysself less than 50 feet from where, on Sunday, March 22nd at 5:57pm, a strange man brushed himself against my arm as he passed and whispered "Hey baby...beautiful eyes" :

What really, is the proper response to street harassment?  Have we figured this out yet?

The way I see it, there are three options:

1: Succumb.  Smile and say "Thank You" and risk being made late by unwanted conversation at best, followed home and continually harassed at worst.

2:  Fight Back.  Which puts you in danger of worse harassment or even violence.  Remember!  Rebuffing an unwanted advance will get you killed.  Do a quick Google search on women killed by the men they rejected the advances of and enjoy scrubbing that off for the rest of the evening you're welcome.

3:  Ignore It.  Let it sit on the top of your belly all greasy and sickening like oil on top of water, making you silently furious because you can't do anything. 

Ignore it, and marvel at the possible motivation behind it.  Was it intended as a kindness?  Or was the harasser aware of the fright it illicits and maliciously lashed out with the sole intent of making me feel pathetic, boxed-in, hunted, and worthless?  Are all the "well-intentioned men" who "just want to let you know you look good" out there playing dumb, and purposely exercising their power over women to make us feel afraid because they know they can, and they can claim good intentions, and they can get away with it?

Ignore it, and wonder what I could possibly be doing to send the signal that I want this sort of thing.  Is it because I dared walk unescorted by a male to the laundromat?  I never get this sort of thing when my boyfriend is walking by my side.  I know he's sympathetic to it, but he can't understand it because he never sees it happening.  Sorry to all the #NotAllMen out there, but until you've been hissed at by someone double your size alone on your own street, let alone every time you set foot outside, you can't really know what it's like to feel like a mouse in a cat's claws. 

Wonder, wonder, wonder the reason.  Because I'm certainly not getting harassed because I look "too hot."

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Trader Joe's Tuesday: Whipped Cream Cheese

Trader Joe's Whipped Cream Cheese

Tastes Like:
  Not-sweet Cream Cheese frosting.  Or, whipped cream cheese.  There really is no mystery here.  Sometimes it's nice to get just what you expect.

Great With:  Bagels and blackberry jam.  Oh you've never combined cream cheese and blackberry jam?  I'm so sorry about that LIFE YOU'VE NEVER LIVED SERIOUSLY TRY IT WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU *pant pant*  I'm okay...I'm okay...

Perfect For:  Fancying up your breakfasts.  And I'm not just talking about bagels here!  Cut a muffin in half, toast lightly, and spread a generous dollop of this heavenly stuff on the insides.

Must Know:  Definitely not for vegans - this is a whole lotta dairy - from cows not treated with rBST!  Whatever that means.

Costs:  $1.99 for cream cheese in New York City is A STEAL!  Because of the whipped texture, it does feel like it's mostly air, so it goes away quickly but it's delicious when it's around!

Monday, March 23, 2015

TTFN, Hipster Batgirl

Is there any better feeling than being right?

Around the last issue of Batgirl of Burnside, I developed a theory as to who the villain was aaaaaaaaand... SPOILER ALERT

I was totally right!  It's Batgirl/Oracle herself!  In my theory, the whole Burnside blushy-hearts escapade was a fugue state and the REAL Batgirl had to rouse herself out of it through the computer program she invented.  And she would reclaim her body and all would be well!


Oh, okay, she's the villain now?  And BG of BS is the REAL one?  Um, okay.

Awkward fight scene in 3...2...1...

Ugh isn't it just the worst when your boobs hit you in the face during a fight sequence? 

Wocka wocka wocka.

But with a little help from her friends, Batgirl wins the day the old-fashioned confusing an evil artificial intelligence into self-destructing. 

Hooray we're not dead!  Let's PARTY!

Sexy dancing ensues.

And the real hero is, as always, the costume direction. 


See you in June,
Black Canary and Batgirl of Burnside!

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Sunday Stealing: The " I " Meme

This Sunday Stealing
is all about ME!!  So here's a picture of me, in case I forget what I look like:

Nice.  Anyway!  On with the stealing!

I am...

I want...
chocolate pretty much all the time.

I have...
coffee in the morning and tea at night.

I wish... 
I knew the ending of the story.

I hate...

I fear...
not having time enough to squeeze out of life everything that I want.

I hear...
a man singing opera out the window sometimes. 

I search...
Google when I want to know random things and spend far too long thereafter learning more things and isn't it wonderful that we have all this knowledge out there, so easy to find, that the only limits are the ones in our own minds? 

I wonder...
what I'll think about myself in 10 years. 

I regret...
not being as outgoing when I was young.  I forgive myself, but I wish I could go back and give a shy little girl the reassurance she needed.  I think, though, it forced me to learn to develop genuine friendships.  So maybe it was all for the best.

I love...
sunrises, sunsets, baths by candlelight, wine - all wine! - the smell of dirt in spring, incense and darkly lit rooms, jowly dog smiles, soft things, smelly things, and that tingly clean feeling after washing my face. 

I never...
remember everything when I leave the house.  I'll forget to put on perfume, or bring that extra banana, or leave my wallet at home (which is not as big a catastrophe as you'd think).  A good day is a day when the thing I've forgotten is not missed. 

I ache...
to relive good memories...even if it was just hours ago. 

I always...
brush my teeth before school because my morning routine is finely honed and scheduled to the minute.  I'm really proud that I remember.  That's sad. 

I usually...
fall asleep without a problem.  It's the waking up in the middle of the night - or just an hour too early - that bothers me.  It's so hard to get back to sleep!  But the first time around?  No problem. 

I am not...
a picky eater, I SWEAR.  I avoid the gluten because it distresses my insides.  And I don't eat most meats because I don't like it.  So I don't eat chicken, beef, or pork.  Or fowl, or hooved animals.  But I eat the crap out of seafood and will demolish escargot if you put cheese on it (CHEESE I tell ya!)

I dance...
poorly and often. 

I sing...
aloud when someone on the train is rapping to their headphones.  Yes, people do this.  Yes, singing Billy Joel and West Side Story makes me just as big an asshole as they are being.  But hopefully they see ME belting out The Beatles and realize how ridiculous they look and learn. 

I sometimes...
slip and use demeaning language toward other women.  As much as I try my best, I sometimes catch myself thinking "Ugh, that bitch!" which is so horrible.  Of course, I'm just as mean towards men who, say, take up the entire bench with their leg-spread but the negative language used to demean women is more common and easily tossed around, I think. 

I cry...
at those Sarah MacLaughlin animal ads on television.  Which is proof of my humanity.

I am not always...
happy with the way I look.  And I let it affect me too much.  I would like to be rid of this problem, one way or another. 

I lose...
my temper when I'm not "in control" of a situation.  I'm getting a lot better at this, as in, it's less of a struggle and letting go comes more naturally.  Rarely now do I feel triggered, but that may come from more careful planning.

I am confused...
by high-strung people.  Why can't they just chill the fuck out?  If I stand behind one more lady at the bank who pointedly and sarcastically snaps "Ex-cuse me!" at someone who mistakenly cuts in line.  And always at the bank!  News flash: Nobody likes standing in line at the bank.  You know what doesn't help?  Waging a duel with the person in front of you over manners.  Right? 

I need...
more money.  If I got paid hourly, and not salaried, I'd be making $5 an hour for a 55-hour week.  I need my wage to reflect my effort and energy. 

I should...
wrap up this post and work in something else.  Seriously!

Friday, March 20, 2015

5 Fandom Friday: Comfort Films

I am so excited for this week because as soon as I saw the prompt, I knew exactly which films I was going to write about.  So does this mean "comfort films" are a thing?  Because I definitely have some movies I've watched over and over again to the point of madness:

1.  Earth Girls Are Easy  was my go-to movie on Netflix - ah! - back when I still had the Netflix.  Why didn't Julie Brown's career take off after that film?  Why did Geena Davis, Jim Carrey, and Jeff Goldblum's careers take off?  Huh.  'Tis for pondering, verily.  This movie is - get ready for it - a science fiction musical.  A SCIENCE FICTION MUSICAL.  About aliens and valley girls.  GO WATCH IT RIGHT NOW if you have Netflix.

2.  How to Marry A Millionaire  another favourite of the Instant Streaming days of yore.  Gentlemen prefer blondes, some like it hot, but to me, this is my favourite Marilyn Monroe movie.  Really helps scratch that seven-year itch!  Oh my god I'll stop.  So the premise, you'd imagine, is three models trying to marry rich men.  Doesn't sound like a lot?  But oh just you wait.  If you love Old Hollywood glamour and love stories THEN YOU HAVE A PULSE whoopsie I mean then you'll love this movie!

3.  Grease 2  I own this on DVD.  Yes, me and three other people own this on DVD.  Michelle Pfeiffer had a copy but she burned it in a spiritual ceremony.  LOLJK but can we talk about how cheesy this movie is compared to the orig-Grease?  It's like 30% of the quality with 300% more sexual innuendo.  With songs like "Score Tonight," "Let's Do It For Our Country" (yes, that kind of "do it") and the even less subtle "Reproduction" - I am not even kidding here folks.  Seeing is believing.

4.  The Trip  yet another movie I've Instantly Streamed so many times that Netflix is trying to find the words to ask me, "Don't you wanna watch anything else?"  The answer is no.  This movie is chock-full of dry, British humour, exotic foods, desolate vistas, ABBA sing-alongs, James Bond impersonations, and feels.  So many feels. 

5.  Gone With The Wind
  once upon a time, before Netflix, having a sick day meant pulling out the DVD box and deciding which disc I wanted:  did I want spoiled, young Scarlet O'Hara who learns the hard lesson of life when war (and Sherman!) descend upon her beloved Atlanta?  Or did I want struggling, scrappy Scarlet O'Hara who works to save Tara, marries Rhett and finally realizes she loves him only after it's too late?  The decision really boils down to these favourite scenes:

Disc One:  The scene at the auction in Atlanta just after Charles dies and Scarlett is in mourning but Rhett bids to dance with her (The Virginia Reel!) and she agrees to dance with him - "For the cause!", of course.  But Rhett wants more - "I want you to say those words to me that you said to Ashley Wilkes that day of the barbecue at Twelve Oaks: 'I love you'." 


The scene when Rhett leaves Scarlett on the road with the Melanie, Prissy, the baby, and the horse (The last horse in Atlanta!).  That kiss goodbye:  "You're sending a soldier into battle with a happy memory..." "Kiss me, Scarlett.  Kiss me...once..."  Oh my Flying Spaghetti Monster.  They don't make love scenes like that anymore.  They just don't.  They can't.


Disc Two:  After Frank Kennedy's funeral when Rhett proposes marriage to Scarlett and she rebuffs him, then chases him down the street saying "I want a diamond!  A big one!"  Oh yeah you do.


Yes, the ever-so controversial scene when Rhett discovers Scarlett drinking ("I know when you drink, and I know how much.  Never drink alone, Scarlett.")  and threatens her and then carries her off to - well, kind of rape her, I guess?  It's pretty clear that she's fighting him a bit and then goes limp.  Did she consent?  I don't know.  I suppose the controversy might be part of why that scene is so intriguing.

Wow, I sure talked my post off today.  I'm really curious to see everyone else's answers too!

Thursday, March 19, 2015

The Person I Am Not

I'm not a "dainty jewelry" person...

I'm a big, sparkly, four-rings-at-a-time, wear a pewter vertebrae around my neck person.  I see people wearing thin silver bands and dainty diamond necklaces and think, "That's so pretty, feminine, and subtle," I immediately realize that much as I would like to pull off a thin chain around my neck, I'm just not a dainty jewelry person.  If I'm going to drown in jewelry, it should be big enough to sink me to the bottom.  Love your gold bangle, really, and your studs make you look so polished.  But I'm not a dainty jewelry person, and I really never was.

I'm not a "neutral colours" person...

Unless I'm wearing them all at once!  I know what I like - purple, black, and olive green - and would rather match pink + red than brown + blue.  If we're not counting shoes, I own ONE piece of brown clothing...because it reminds me of Obi-Wan.  It's my Jedi shirt.  I don't think I ever figured "earth tones" out.  Is "denim" a neutral colour?  Or just in Canada?  Maybe Breton stripes will count as a neutral one day, but I have too much floral print in my closet.  Isn't the point of "neutral colours" to avoid drawing focus?  What's the point in wearing clothes, then?  A student asked me, "Why do you always dress so weird?" and I placated him by insisting "Because I can."  If that means I'm not a neutral colours person, then, colour me proud to be what I am!

I'm not a "ballet flats" person...

I blame it on a malfunction of my toes.  Ballet flats and "cute shoes" just cut my "pointer toe" to shreds!  And they're completely impractical for climbing stairs, they keep popping off!  But I feel like less of an "adult" for not being able to wear "adult" shoes.  What if Cinderella hadn't been wearing slip-ons, but lace-up boots?  High-top Chucks?  Would she have missed her destiny?  Am I missing mine?  Should I just keep trying?  Wrap my feet in Band-Aids and give it another go with ballet flats?  Is it a lack of determination, the only thing standing between me and being able to stand comfortably in a pair of what the world insists are "comfortable shoes"?  I think I must be broken, in my toes or in my soul.

I'm not a "fresh face" person...

Does this mean I don't believe in "natural beauty?" People ask if I'm "sick" when I don't wear makeup.  It's not just to hide flaws, it's my daily dose of creative expression!  Makeup is my grown-ass colouring book.  I love my skin - big nose, tattoos, "ugly misshapen body" and all.  But I feel sexy and creative putting on lots of makeup, too.  My freshest face is fresh off the printer's.  Take it or leave it.

There's a certain comfort in knowing who I am, and who I am not. 
But I won't hold it against me if I prove me wrong.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Trader Joe's Tuesday: Salsa Verde

Trader Jose's Salsa Verde

Tastes Like:  Lime, actually!  It's not so much spicy as it is tangy.

Great With:  Soy Chorizo - offset the heat nicely!  And everything else - eggs, nachos, polenta, anything you put salsa on.

Perfect For:  Sufferers of salsa ennui.

Must Know:  Texture is a little thin - not as chunky as a salsa dip so it's more of a sauce, less of a dip, catch my drift?

Costs:  $1.99 for a jar that will last you A WHILE!

Monday, March 16, 2015

Orphans of the Sky

At 128 pages, you may have a hard time believing this is a Heinlein novel.  But it is!  And a doozy at that!  First, let's grok the title page:

You're probably wondering, "What does this book smell like?"  I'll let those dates suffice to tell you it smells like Heaven, pure heaven.

It also has almost everything you'd expect out of a Heinlein book: minus the sex.  So if you're hoping for a delightful romp of orgies, cats, and flirty banter, stick to the Lazarus Long novels.  If you like your Heinlein preachy (a la Stranger in a Strange Land), this book is going to be a sweet little bonbon of sacrilege for you!

Welcome aboard a ship that offers everything you could need in long as you don't ask too many questions.  For what more could there be to life than waking, working, eating, sleeping, and eventually, dying?  Dare to find out?  The answer might be more than you can handle.

One typical Heinlein feature that this book employs heavily is The Dean of Science Fiction's ability to describe a concept foreign to a character in vivid, astonishing detail.  For example, we might be awed when we see the stars.  But imagine going your whole life never seeing stars, and seeing them for the first time as an adult?  Heinlein masterfully laces himself into the shoes of characters experiencing things we have long taken for granted for the very first time.  The result is my favourite aspect of this book.

Heresy and politics intertwine as unlikely allies join forces to uncover the meaning of life.  A short but satisfying read, suitable for all ages because the only objectionable content is violence but isn't violence like required now?  Strongly recommend, I believe you will enjoy it.

I cannot promise your copy will smell as good, though.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Sunday Stealing: That One Thing...

That one thing...

That makes you smile:

Puppies falling down.  I'm sorry.  It's the truth.

That makes you cry:

I cry at reality television.  I am that pathetic.  Extreme Makeover:  Home Edition always got me in the feels.

That you love to do on the weekends:

It's my only chance to sleep.  I love staying up "late" and sleeping - yesterday I didn't get out of bed until 1:30!!  That's fifth period, guys!

That you do only for yourself:

Candlelit baths after dark, but it's been a while so I think I'm due for one...

That you have in your underwear drawer that's NOT underwear:


That you do before going to sleep:

I usually chug a mug of Sleepytime tea to help me sleep and hey, can't argue with results.

That you do within 15 minutes of waking:

Imbibe the coffees.  It is of most importance.

That's in your purse:

My wallet is an heirloom from my grandmother.  It's leather embossed with roses and it's the coolest.

That you actually LIKE to clean: 

I don't LIKE to clean anything, but there is a certain satisfaction in cleaning the bathroom vanity.  At least the place where I primp APPEARS to be clean, you know?

That you detest cleaning:

Bathtubs and showers.  If I wanted a workout, I would join a gym.  But I don't, so I won't, and you won't catch me leaning over a tub anytime soon.

That other people would find odd about you:

I actually don't mind waking up early.  I'm the first person at work every day.  It's not bad, guys, it really isn't.

That you would buy if I handed you a $100 bill:

I would save it for rent.  Seriously!  Or spend it on a bunch of new dresses.

That you feel you have to do before you die:

To quote The Carpenters: "we've only just begun to live..."  I haven't scratched the surface yet, I don't want to count everything, that would make me depressed.

Friday, March 13, 2015

5 Fandom Friday: FBFF's

Like, if these people actually existed, we'd totally be best friends in real life because how could we not?

1. & 2.  Willow & Xander from Buffy the Vampire Slayer  are the coolest people in the whole of the world forever and ever amen.  If you don't get along with these two, you're probably deficient in some horrific way.  Or you're The Master.  Either way, I'd stay away from you...and pal around with the Scoobies.  Sunnydale Razorbacks!!

3.  Ragdoll from Secret Six  is totally weird but I like that in a human being.  Slightly perverted, kind of evil, but really fun.  Love him.

4.  Frenchie from Grease and
Grease 2  is a doll!  She's the best girl friend everyone wants!  What a sweetheart!  Just don't let her pierce your ears.

5.  The Fourth Doctor from Doctor Who as portrayed by Tom Baker  looooook, everyone has a favourite Doctor.  He's mine.  What a joyful nut.  We could jump rope, climb buildings, escape capture, get caught, escape again, get caught again...all while slightly tipsy.  Hey!  I'd love to go to that place in Paris with the lovely Bouillabaisse...

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Here Comes The Sun

I am a July baby, that's for sure.  I think I actually hibernate during the winters, until my true self can come out at the first sign of Light Jacket Weather.  Which is exactly what we're starting to have up here in the frozen tundra New York City.


After the winter we've had, it's unspeakably marvelous to slip into a light jacket, slide on my favourite pair of sunglasses and just start walking out the front door, which is just what I've been doing at every opportunity! 

Even my lovely city seems to be peeking out from under the layers of drab it puts on every winter to keep warm, and showing more of its lovely self.

The air smells like damp dirt, the sun has taken on that too-bright glare and all too soon, we'll be choking on humidity and begging for respite once more.  But for the early spring, when a light sweater is still mandatory and leggings forgive us for going the odd day without shaving, we can dream of lying in the sunshine under a tree in Central Park, propping up a parasol for shade and laughing with a friend, sharing a romantic picnic or even just a good book to ourselves.  The prospects seem brighter when the sun stays out an hour later.

And here comes the sun.

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