friday link love

So, the book BLADs are here. #thisishapppening

Happy Friday, friends. Last week I was in bucolic Vermont countryside, surrounded by trees, lakes, hills and a lot of sky. And now vacation feels so far away, so long ago, it seems surreal that it was just some days ago that we went to see a meteor shower and on our way, in the dark, saw an outline of an owl sitting on a nearby tree. Getting away from the city into the quiet countryside was, perhaps, one of the best things for my buzzing brain. We also got a lovely visit in with the generous folks from Vermont Creamery – who showed us how they make their cheese (I have pictures somewhere in my camera, and I will find them) and sent us home with so many treats, we felt like we struck the dairy lottery. It’s really great to see how a company you’ve loved for so many years, does their work; how thoughtful they are about their processes, quality, outreach, environment. It’s even more amazing when your vision of them really matches the reality.

Now, back in New York, 16-hour days have begun in earnest, and will likely continue until February 1. This week flew by so fast, I didn’t realize it was Friday until just now. I was planning (hoping, really) to find some time to tell you about my favorite scrambled eggs. I know they don’t sound like anything special, but they are remarkable. My father-in-law made them for us in Vermont and I nearly fell out of my chair – they were the best, most delicate scrambled eggs I’ve ever had. I hope to write about them soon.

The photo above is of a BLAD (book/basil layout and design) of the book I spent writing last year with Iron Chef Marc Forgione. It’s finally coming together and will be published on April 29, 2014. There’s still some work to be done on it, but for the most part, we’re getting closer and closer to being completely finished. It is a beautiful book (layout and design wise), and photographer Evan Sung did a stunning job with such a complex project. I’m still pinching myself that I got to work with Marc and his amazing team and that he trusted me with telling his story. If you live in New York and haven’t yet been to his namesake restaurant, I suggest you go. And if you are in town for work or vacation, you should definitely check it out. I realize this might sound like a cheesy plug since I wrote the book with the chef, but I was in awe of his food since he opened his restaurant, way before I ever met him in person.

I hope you like the links today and I hope you have a wonderful weekend ahead. I don’t foresee a lot of rest for me – such is life, and I really shouldn’t complain. I’m working and I have amazing projects on my plate; I just wish there were just a few more hours in the day or that I could give myself an extension by, say, one month on one of these projects.


Your lifestyle has already been designed.

What happens when you abolish tipping – an argument for doing away with tips and automatically including a service charge. Here’s another restaurant, the venerable Sushi Yasuda, that did away with tips and raised prices by 15%. I’d rather pay more in food costs knowing that the staff will be better paid, or have a service charge included with my meal, but I’m sure not everyone feels this way. Do you agree/disagree with this possible new trend?

Turning to your phone for a better night’s sleep.

The horrific plight of Hungary’s Roma.

23 signs you’re secretly an introvert. A resounding Yes on all of them, but particularly: 4, 8, 10 (friends have seen me do this), 13, 14, and 22.

Crushed by the cost of childcare. I think about this a lot, particularly as A and I talk about kids in the future. What I make now can help with childcare, but I can’t support the number of hours I work and have a baby. At the same time, cutting back on work will mean a lot less income and after taxes and all it might become a wash, so being able to afford childcare in this environment is something that will be financially very difficult for us.

Dear Fox News, perhaps we should consider increasing the minimum wage instead of suggesting (and not even subtly at that) that welfare recipients are lazy?

Zuckerberg’s goal of connecting 5 billion people to the internet could take 20 years.

Abandoned house in the woods taken over by wild animals. Magical and beautifully shot.

Reclaim your mind from technology; practice contemplative computing.


  • merry jennifer

    That 23 signs of being an introvert article was very relatable — and I’m with you on 4, 8, 10, 14, and 22. Also 3 (big time).

    And congrats on that beautiful book! I can’t wait to see it in person (and YOU, my dear).

  • Jennifer

    1. Having spent an early part of my adult life waiting tables and/or cocktailing, I loved it when we could include the tip. It was usually for large parties and it was always clearly indicated on the bill and/or discussed beforehand. Despite the notifications, 80% of the time the tables still left 20% on top of it.

    2. Ran into my fav cousin Andy last week, maybe seeing your VT pics on Instagram planted the seed, we started talking about Vt & we are going on a bonus trip in October. I haven’t been in the fall in over 20 years. So excited.

  • olga

    Jennifer – that’s awesome re: VT trip! Enjoy it. And take lots of pictures!

    MJ – cannot wait to see you! And yes to #3. Big time.

  • Sharmila

    Olga, I love that your Friday links are from all over and that each one is such a wonderful read. I look forward to them. I loved today’s list and all the thought-provocation they necessitated.
    Hope you find some time in your hectic days ahead to be able to have some time for yourself. In our busy worlds, it is difficult to make time for the most important resource one has, our self.
    Good luck with it all and congratulations on the beautiful book.

  • olga

    Sharmila – thanks so much for your sweet words. You’re right, it is hard to find time for ourselves. I’m not sure I’ve cracked the code on that one yet :)

  • Phillipp

    Wow that was unusual. I just wrote an very long comment but after I clicked submit my comment didn’t show up.
    Grrrr… well I’m not writing all that over again.
    Regardless, just wanted to say fantastic blog!

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