Wednesday, August 23, 2006



I just saw A Touch of Spice. It was singularly sensuous: a collection of images of beautiful people; people whose hearts touch; people mired in attachment and addiction to those oils and spices that fixed a place called home in their skin - so deeply, it would never be forgotten.

I have started to unlearn some of my deep love for the many textures of meat - tendon and cartilage and marrow and kidney. It's still there, but poisoned with the idea that meat is a sirloin or a rib-eye or New York strip steak; a sanitized and standardized and very oversized and overnourishing slab of loot.

Caribbean Restaurant
A few days ago I was starving, so I found myself at this new nearby restaurant. Actually, it's more than two years old, and I've been there maybe three times. On previous visits, I noted that I like the decor, that the passionfruit juice is mind-blowingly good, and that I doubt any true Carribean people eat such bland food as they serve there. My complaint? They don't know their sauces.

Well, if the food was tasteless a year ago, why was I back there last week?

A charming man (not the owner, who's also charming despite being a perhaps overeager businessman) made me order some juice, brought me a loaf, which I devoured, followed by a very very good and simple salad. I quickly annihilated the rice and beans; only when it was just the meat left was I calm enough to actually taste the food. The meat reminded me of suya. I have never had meat in this country that reminded me of suya before.

I bought some suya on the street near the embassy in Victoria Island last time I was in Lagos. Took some home to my brother. It's so hard to take suya home - hard to stay honest - but I love the boy. He loved the suya. I hope that means he loves me too.

The restaurant owner told me the carne asada I just enjoyed was a filet mignon, butterflied, all that crap. I don't care. I had butterflied whatever before, and it didn't taste like this. I had expensive steak before. In undergrad, a Microsoft recruiter took a bunch of us kids to dinner. I was going to stay in school to study for tests, but gave in to the pressure to be interested in a wealthier future at Microsoft. I recall that dinner for maybe ten people cost as much as a semester's meal plan at Howard. No, I don't remember the food, but it was one of those dinners at which people made a big to-do about things being butterflied.

I saw a honey-coloured insect today on my way back from the movie. Outstretched wings, elegant craned neck...I came closer and it was a cockroach. Then I thought it had too many feelers...oh! that's another one next to it. The grate they live on is labelled as covering a drain that feeds into the sea. Oh there were many cockroaches on the draincover. The first placid family of cockroaches I've seen.

O happy day!
Before the Greek Spice movie, I ate ẹba at home, with leftover ọgbonọ from a trip to Veronica's Kitchen. Before that I saw Trust the Man - my kind of film.

Today was so right. And warm. I was so happy. I hope I die on a day like today.

Sunday, August 20, 2006



On desire:
The sheer desire of these young people!
The link is to a set of eight pictures, see them all.

On nesting:
This jibjab animation shows how people use the Big Box Mart to satisfy so many needs.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Luc Leestemaker


It was my first time at The Grove in Los Angeles. December 2002: I had just learned to drive, got a car and a license three months earlier, and was desperate to escape worrying about my qualifying exams for a few minutes or hours.

The Grove was magical at Christmas.

That evening, I had a thought-provoking conversation with a Dutch, almost American, artist while waiting to see The Hours. I see on his webpage that he recently founded The Art Fund Corporation to help build artists' careers. (I'm jus' sayin' you know...if this is your thing...)

Although I don't remember the story, I'll never forget the images from and the thoughts evoked by The Hours, a movie I watched more than once - drove friends to LA to see it days later.