Moving In With Spicy Chicken Tacos

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Putting the kitchen together in my new Saint Paul apartment is a unique look back on...me. I unpack the black and white speckled ceramic mug and remember all the handcrafted dishes my Mom has given me over the years. I unpack my dying, miniature hand beater that was a desperate Goodwill purchase in college and remember how I didn't even try to feel "at home" all three of those years. Each dish or lack thereof is a memory and a piece of me. As I ...

First Bites of the Twin Cities

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A few nights ago I was lying in bed reading Mpls St. Paul Magazine when I realized what I was actually reading was the restaurant directory in the back, soaking up the 6-point sized font descriptions of every restaurant in the Twin Cities like they were water from the Fountain of Youth. But this time, in this city, I succumbed to the fact that this is not a problem, this is a passion. The kitchen in my new apartment in still in disarray, and I've barely even ...

24 NYC Moments: May 2014

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A "moment" from each month I spent in NYC. Sometimes tasty, always tRuthful. Bonus! Month 25: May 2014 It's an odd feeling to close the door for the last time on an apartment you know you'll never live in again. It's stranger when it's likely your last day living in that city. It's a half-metaphor--the inevitable click of a door closing, saying no to future opportunities here, and ending an era--all without the immediacy of more doors opening on the other side. It's a moment of reflection ...

24 NYC Moments: April 2014

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A "moment" from each month I spent in NYC. Sometimes tasty, always tRuthful. Month 24: April 2014 "Nice shades," a middle-aged man says to me casually as I pass him walking south on Broadway in the Upper West Side. "Are you wearing them because the Mets are playing a big game today?" It seemed like such an offhand thing to say, but I guess I should be used to that by now. After two years of living in New York City if there's one thing I know ...

24 NYC Moments: March 2014

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A "moment" from each month I spent in NYC. Sometimes tasty, always tRuthful. Month 23: March 2014 "Lamb over rice with extra hot sauce," I beg of the Middle Eastern man inside the halal cart. I was swept up in March Madness--you know, that annual college basketball tournament--earlier tonight. But my team (Wisconsin) got disqualified, and though I'm only mildly deflated as I walk out of the sports bar, I realize I'm incredibly hungry. I walk to the corner of Houston and Bowery, where I've agreed to ...

24 NYC Moments: February 2014

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A "moment" from each month I spent in NYC. Sometimes tasty, always tRuthful. Month 22: February 2014 Sometimes being a Midwesterner in New York City can be dangerous. It's February 13, and it's snowing the hardest it's snowed all year. My boss texted me this morning asking if I'd work tomorrow instead of today--it would be dead at the store despite it being a big holiday prep day. What does a Wisconsinite do when they find themselves with an unexpected day off? Trudge right into a blizzard ...

24 NYC Moments: January 2014

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A "moment" from each month I spent in NYC. Sometimes tasty, always truthful. Month 21: January 2014 She's gathered all of her friends at one table for her birthday celebration here at the Golden Unicorn, a popular Chinatown destination for dim sum. In all my twenty-four years, this is my first time having dim sum, that Chinese food experience where waiters wheel carts of hot food past you and you take what you want to eat right off the cart. We're sitting in the middle of a ...