Monthly Archives: March 2010

Go Well Go Shell

Love the rainbow arrows creating movement all over these vintage Shell Oil posters dating back to 1964. The series was created by Australian designer Frank Eidlitz.

via Grain Edit via The Silver Lining via Re:collection.

Starring in a Movie of His Own Life

I just loved this photo and Sartorialist’s description:

I love how Milanese gentlemen move like they are the star of their own film.

Such swagger. Such intrigue.

This isn’t about fashion or even style but about creating an impact on the viewer.

A visual seduction.

I’m pretty sure that’s how we should decide to dress each day – with swagger, intrigue and seduction.

Scallops n’ Pasta

As Spring has finally pushed out the Winter blues, I’ve been turning to the gym and a lighter fare for eating. This scallops and pasta recipe is delightfully simple, and having made it a few times now, I’m discovering how easy it is to cook scallops! I chose frozen scallops because they were cheaper than fresh – takes a bit to defrost them, but worth it for the wallet!

Scallops n’ Pasta
Adapted from Tasty Kitchen Blog.

  • 1 pkg Linguine
  • 10 whole Giant Fresh or Frozen Sea Scallops
  • 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
  • 1 Tablespoon Butter
  • 1 clove Garlic, Finely Diced
  • 1/2 pkg of Grape or Cherry Tomatoes, Sliced in Half
  • 1 cup White Wine
  • 1 sprig Parsley, Finely Minced
  • Just A Bit Of Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice
  • Salt And Pepper

Preparation Instructions

1. Cook the pasta in salted water per the instructions on the box. Drain and set aside.

2. In the meantime, prep all the ingredients and have them at the ready nearby. If you’re using frozen scallops, de-frost for a few hours in the refrigerator beforehand, or run under warm water. Then, use a couple of layers of paper towels and pat very dry. Move the scallops to a clean sheet of paper towel and pat dry once more. Season with salt and pepper on both sides.

3. Heat a large frying pan or saute pan over high heat. When hot, swirl in the olive oil. Add the scallops to the pan, not touching. Give each scallop ample room so that they can sear properly. Cook for 2 minutes without touching (don’t touch!) then flip and cook for another 2 minutes until cooked through. Remove to a plate.

4. Turn the heat to low. Add the butter and the garlic. Saute for just 10 seconds and then add the tomatoes.

5. Turn the heat to high and add in the white wine. Let it bubble a bit for 30 seconds and use your spatula to scrape up the bits in the pan. Season with salt and pepper (go light on the salt … remember your pasta is lightly salted now), throw in the parsley and then add in your cooked pasta. Stir well to let the sauce coat the pasta. Serve with the scallops and additional parsley on top.

Old (Vintage) Stuff, Gorgeous

I’ve just spent a good amount of time browsing through Factory 20‘s selections. I’ve learned they are particularly adept at styling old (vintage) stuff, and making me want it desperately.

From top: Heavy Patina’d Steel Mutli-Drawer Cabinet, $920; Old Shamrock Vintage Industrial Elevated Laundry Bin, $345; Neo-Bauhaus Wall Mounted Wooden Coat Rack, $1070; Regent Balboa Portrait Wall Mirror, $480; Bus Station Waiting Room Clock, $465; Vintage Industrial Steel Laboratory Single Drawer Table/Desk, $885; Mammoth Green School Chalkboards, SOLD; High Victorian Articulate Accordion Beveled Oval Portrait Mirror, $535.

Lest you missed it…

This is an official White House photo of President Obama working on a speech, with all his edits up close and personal. Awesome, eh?

via Bobulate.

Re-Thinking Workaholism

“Work is the only thing which makes life endurable to me,” Charles Darwin wrote, later remarking that work was his “sole enjoyment in life.” Darwin’s work allowed him to withdraw from the world to concentrate entirely on his genius.

Burying yourself in work is so ingrained and glorified in our culture to survive, that nowhere is safe, even the previously safe haunts of creativity where the tradition of daydreaming and an idle nature were once protected rights. Such inefficiencies are now subject to intense bright-lights examination.

One ad agency describes the process they went through to obtain ISO 5000, a certification previously reserved only for factory lines and manufacturing. The process revealed some “surprising inefficiencies” but came at a price. “All the hyper-efficiency can be exhausting,” reported the Chief Creative Officer Jeff Gabel. “You’ve removed your slop factor.”

Exhaustion is now the modus operandi. As such, workaholism is not a reaction to passion, but the inefficiencies of the modern workplace.

“The fact is,” Dave Balter, founder and CEO of BzzAgent, says, “few white-collar employees work 9-5 at all anymore. We’re expected to address work issues on weeknights and often on weekends. We’re constantly reachable and it goes without saying that many are reviewed on the merits of their ‘always on’ capacity.” (via Max Kalehoff).

Most of us are working the usual 9 to 5, but also when inspiration strikes. Whereas in the industrial revolution, work was indeed done when you completed your widgets for the day, the knowledge society demands your energy when it’s seemingly most inconvenient. Right before bed and long into the night, for instance, or first thing upon opening your eyes in the morning.

There’s a credible explanation for these 9 to 5 outliers, which is that the productivity pockets are cushioned by breaks – a tweet, sleep, dinner, interaction with friends and family. Such idleness is great sustenance.

Alain de Botton, best known for his philosophies on everyday life, agrees. There’s a glorious stubbornness to human nature, he says. We need a break, we need a pause, we’re not made for continuous action. Looking out the window is a fundamental part of human nature, he argues.

“Periodic breaks relieve our conscious minds of the pressure to perform — pressure that can lock us into a single mode of thinking,” argue the authors of Creativity and the Mind, a landmark text in the psychology and neuroscience of creativity. Their research suggests that regular breaks enhance problem-solving skills significantly, Wired reports.

We’re working all the time, not because we need to, or even because it’s effective, but because our jobs require us to show up, be seen, and scrub through the afternoon slump. But the truth is, no one is working at 3 pm. That should be nap time, argues De Botton. (Interestingly, those who nap have a higher capacity to learn).

The culture of workaholism, worn with a badge of narcissistic and perfectionist pride, isn’t mixed with a lot of real work, he says. In our squeeze for uber-efficiency, we’re making a giant mess of inefficiencies.

A recent Wall Street Journal post profiled a young “superhero” who “rises at 3:30 a.m., works out before work, takes three of his four kids to school, works flat-out all day, gets home for dinner and bedtime with the family and then works until midnight.”

If you were counting, the young superhero gets a whopping three and a half hours of sleep. Disgusting.

Workaholism is sick and it’s wrenching to watch the pedestal we build for it.

We are not drones,  and we should not  indenture ourselves to workaholic servitude. Our rhythms, what truly brings about the bliss of efficiency, require not the constant ticking of the clock, but a restful mind, a glance in the other direction, a check mark in a box that doesn’t exist on any spreadsheet.

That is, sometimes work needs a little life.

Kanye on Creativity

There’s no such thing as fact anymore, only opinion. The closest thing we have to fact is “common opinion”. Everything is an opinion. The way you dress is an expression of your opinion. Your religious beliefs are your opinion. The music you turn up loud is your opinion. For most people it’s easier to just agree. For me the hardest thing is to ‘just’ agree and that is what sparks creativity, the feeling that something can be better, the feeling that something’s missing. The feeling that something’s needed.

– Kanye West (via Frank Chimero)

May 28th Watches

Elastic bands and yet totally mod. Loving these.

$39 each at May 28th Watches.

Alexander Wang / Spring

I’m particularly coveting the outfit in the middle.

Spring ’10 Collection from Alexander Wang.

Nightscape

By Nathan Ward.

Sublet

Fall ’10 Collection from Sublet via Wilkstenmade.

Modern Light / Jan Eleni

By Jan Eleni via Decor8.