Around the Horn: The High Cost of Food

Vintage Cave, Hawaii

Vintage Cave, Hawaii

How much is too much for a meal? How much would you pay for food? In Hawaii, Vintage Cave has a set menu price of $295 and Sushi Ginza Onodera has a omakase set menu price of $250. Would you pay this much for just one dinner (drinks not included)? How much do you value what you eat, and the way it is prepared and presented? What’s the most you’ve paid for a meal?

ALFREDO: For the meal itself, I have no idea what I would be willing to pay. I like good food, don’t get me wrong, but I’m not really a “foodie,” so it comes down to the overall experience for me – yes, what I’m putting in my belly, but more importantly, who I am with, my state of mind, the million and one particulars of that moment. For a great food “experience,” I don’t mind opening my wallet. I have one dear friend who always makes me laugh no matter what kind of day or week or year I’m having: with him, ridiculously overpriced sushi or cold pizza out of the fridge are pretty much the same to me.

AROUND THE HORN – Yo best Kiddie Joke

Jokes of youth.

What’s that one joke you told as a young child that made you and your friends laugh so hard that your tummy muscles burned, you could hardly breathe, and you accidentally farted in blissful delight?

As a dad of three very young girls, I’ve have the good fortune of observing developing youth and all the innocence and discovery that comes with it.  My oldest, who is now 5 ½ years of age, has started coming home from school armed with jokes.  What’s ironic is that many of her jokes are the exact same jokes I was telling at her age.  So it’s fascinating to watch as she saunters up to me with a mischievous grin and a giggle and blurts, “Hey dad, wanna hear a joke?”  And then she lays it on me.  I laugh.  I mainly find her jokes funny because I find it cute that she’s trying to make me laugh.  But for her…wow.  She just busts up laughing like she’s on drugs.  And what’s even funnier is how her 3 ½ and 1 ½ year old sisters end up rolling on the floor, cracking up like they are on drugs too.  I don’t think the younger two really understand the jokes.  They’re just being infected by the uncontrollable laughter of big sis.  And though I don’t personally find my kids’ jokes funny from a purely humorous perspective, I can’t help but enjoy and laugh along with the sounds of childhood delight.  OK, it’s more like high-pitched cackling mixed with struggled breathing.

Which brings me to this – What’s that one childhood joke that you found insanely funny when a youth?  Here’s mine…

My Joke:  

A bunny and a bear are sitting next to each other on a log taking a dump.  After a few pushes and grunts, the bear looks over at the bunny and says…

BEAR – “Bunny, do you ever have problems with poo sticking to your fur?”

BUNNY – “Why no Bear.  Why do you ask?”

And with that, Bear grabbed Bunny and wipes his butt with Bunny.

Bear_bf89b8_2976944

I know, perhaps not so funny as an adult.  But this joke delivered hours upon hours of gut-aching laughter as a kid.

What’s your awesome kid joke?

* * * * * * * *

PHILIP: Definitely wouldn’t be considered PC, but as kids, we thought Helen Keller jokes were the funniest things. Here are a few:

Why is Helen Keller’s legs wet?

Her dog is blind too.

Around the Horn: Planetary Edition

saturn

If you have to pick a planet to visit, which would it be? I’ve always been fascinated by Saturn because it has rings. Unfortunately, it’s mostly a gas planet so I don’t even think you can land on Saturn. But it’s absolutely beautiful and fascinating. Which planet fascinates you other than Earth?

DHH: Since this question assumes technological advances far beyond those currently available, I would want to visit one of those planets theoretically capable of sustaining human-like life. Gliese 667Cc is only 22 light years away, so that seems reasonable, right? Of course, if I did end up finding myself an immigrant alien, the inhabitants of Gliese 667Cc would probably kill me or dissect me or put me in a zoo or something, but it’d be interesting.

Around the Horn: Summer Music Edition

JAMWe’re in the full swing of summer. I’ve always loved summer because as a kid, it’s always meant no school, fun movies and, most importantly, music. There’s nothing like that perfect summer song or album that evokes good times and memories. I’ve already blogged about one of the best summers I had back in 1990 when I was just a kid enjoying everything that Santa Cruz had to offer.

SUMMER-JAMZ

That summer was filled with a lot of music but what I remember as dominating the airwaves that year was the B-52’s “Cosmic Thing” album. The album had actually dropped in 1989 and the big hit was “Love Shack” which is a great summer jam. But it got even more popular in 1990 with other hits like “Roam” which was huge that summer. When I think back to the summers I spent in Santa Cruz during school, the first things that come to mind are the beach/boardwalk, working at a record store and the B-52s.

What’s your quintessential summer jam (song or album)? And add a link to the video if there is one.

Around the Horn: The YOMYOMF Fifth Anniversary Edition

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July 9 marks the fifth anniversary of our YOMYOMF blog. It’s hard to believe it’s already been that long but we’ve come a long way since then. What started as a casual dinner conversation among friends evolved into a community of unique, fun and thoughtful discourse. As we enter our fifth year, I’m excited to incorporate a lot of what we learned as we prepare to launch YOMYOMF 2.0 taking us to the next level. I can’t wait to see where things go in the next five years so wanted to ask everyone where you think we’ll be in five years? What would you like to see us do? Where do you see us going?

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ANDERSON: I can’t believe it’s been 5 years already. Our first blog entry was published in July 2009! It seems so distant, yet feels like it just happened yesterday too. I feel the first year or so, we were very punk rock about it — just blogging whatever we wanted to, as if it was our very own BBS, for us to stay in touch with each other. Then, people started noticing and jumping onboard.

AROUND THE HORN: Set Phases to Temporary!

Sifting through the basement the other day, I had the pleasure of making the acquaintance of an old friend: me at age eleven. Drawings. Short stories. Collected little trinkets that together shaped a young boy, a young boy that once was me. Oddly, he seemed unrecognizable, fixated on topics or themes I’m no longer interested in. I could trace a path from that person to the one sitting here typing this now, but there felt like no direct connection. clones He was very much into science – obsessed with the notion of cloning. Special powers. Magick. It was, by and large, a phase. It was not the only phase in my life, but most certainly, this was one of them. These days, I tend to be more interested in things that are slightly more grounded.

Around the Horn: Father’s Day Edition

My father was always one of the most difficult people to shop for.  He was never sentimental, so any kind of handmade item would not pass muster.  Our number one criterion was whether the gift was returnable.  We got him various items of clothing that were never worn, music that was never listened to, electronics that were never used… Once, we got him an electric toothbrush because his old one had bristles that were misshapen and getting gross.  That was returned because “the speed was wrong”.

grosstoothbrush

Often, we’d just find whatever gift we got him untouched and still in its original box, and so they’d either go back to the store or be confiscated for our own use, like the stereo set (back in the days when we had stereo sets), which I got good use out of.

Around the Horn: Questions

They say that asking better questions leads to better answers and subsequently, better results.

Sometimes when I miss a deadline, I ask myself, “Why am I so bad with discipline?”  I might answer with, “Because I overanalyze everything and then everything takes too long,” or “I don’t really like doing the difficult work, so I do the easy work first,” etc.  And I continue with the same habits.

changing-habits

Recently I’ve been listening to business podcasts and books that are helping me to think more constructively.  One suggestion that comes up often is this:  Decide what you want, set a goal and timeline, specify what needs to happen within that timeline, and then break it down into smaller pieces (I know it’s super obvious, but sometimes I get into the “can’t see the forest for the trees” mode).

Which Favorite Restaurants Do You Fear Will Become Extinct?

 

moca.org

www.moca.org

I heard a few weeks ago that Beverly Hills’ institution – Kate Mantilini’s will close on June 14th due to increased rent.  I’m quite sad as I frequented this special location of Kate’s many times over the years that was perfectly situated near the Academy, WGA screening room, and Wilshire theater.  I patronized this spot for business lunches, meals with friends after or before screenings, had my first meal with my husband there, and many delicious brunches on Sundays where I’d get their Sunday-only Dutch apple pancake or french toast.

www.soundonsight.org

www.soundonsight.org

Around the Horn: Dream Destinations

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Istanbul

Istanbul

If we’re lucky enough to have careers in creative fields, we may find ourselves without much time for real vacations, though work can take us to some interesting places. Though I’ve been fortunate to have seen lots of the world, there’re also many places I have yet to visit. When I fantasize about a genuine vacation, two dream destinations often come to mind: Istanbul and Iceland. I’m fascinated by the former as a historical crossroads where several ancient empires met, and the latter just seems uniquely weird and cool. Ironically, I’ve had invitations to go to both places for work in the past and had to pass, which perhaps just increases their present allure for me.

How about you guys? What are your top dream bucket list destinations?

Around the Horn: Chance Encounters

6290270129_74eef94d8f-3Ever had a chance encounter with someone or something that changed your life? I’m sure you have. But I’m looking for the one that grazed you just short of missing it.

In the fall of ’96, I was jobless and desperately looking for a work. I never buy the Sunday papers because I was too cheap. But my roommate bought one for the want ads, but I never really thought there were any REAL jobs from those ads, but I looked anyway… I was desperate.

“Telemarketing”… naw.
“Clerical”… boring.
“Pole dancing”… hmmmmm.
“Graphic artist”… ok.

I’ll make this fast… my art led to video editing, editing led to wedding videography (blah), videography to visual effects work, mutual filmmaker friend shows my to Justin Lin, Justin Lin asks me to work on films. It only took like 10 years for all this to happen!

I always wondered if my roommate hadn’t bought that paper, where could I have been.

What is one rare chance encounter you had that changed your life?

Around the Horn… If luck was a number…

I love listening to NPR’s Radiolab and this week they had an interesting 20 minute short called For The Love Of Numbers. In it, they discuss how people have favorite numbers and we justify it very strongly. Even numbers are ‘solid’ and ‘dependable’: odd numbers are ‘edgy’ and ‘mystical’. And people have favorite numbers throughout the world despite cultural differences, and yet cite the same characteristics for numbers “it’s a feminine number” or “it feels strong”. But apparently everyone has an affinity for a number.

Come on number 9!!!!!

Come on number 9!!!!!

My favorite number flips between 3 and 9, simply because they are round and I like that. And 3 is the power number for me: the holy trinity for example. And more personal for me, I was raised an only child so it makes me think of me and my mom and dad… Like a little island of three unto ourselves.

Do you have a favorite number and why?