Some really tedious stuff this year. This is why I have no attention span for movies anymore. And I saw Batman for the first time!

  • Tim And Eric’s Billion Dollar Movie (2012)
  • The Master (2012)
  • Sleepwalk With Me (2012)
  • The Campaign (2012) my first drive-in movie. We saw the end of some action rom-com that was terrible.
  • The Comedy (2012)
  • Prometheus (2012)
  • The Dictator (2012)
  • Read more…

These are all library books with one or two exceptions. are books I would recommend, generally. are things I read electronically! Turns out it pretty much evened out between print and e-consumption — but I read way more than in past years just in general.

Food and cooking were the two biggest subjects I read, clearly. There was just so much good stuff! But still kind of obsessive. I got into reading about wheat and sugar as part of my journey to lose 20 pounds and you can also see that in the “diet” books section. I read those as kind of a guilty pleasure but am not above sharing them here. And as far as reading cookbooks goes, it’s more like I “process” them. I look through and save anything I want to make in Evernote.

It turns out I only read four works of fiction. I’ll try to work on that this year!








Many of the things I put in my mouth this year, from midtown on down. Starred ones are the best or notable for some reason.

  • Amorina
  • Ample Hills Creamery
  • Arby’s: horsey sauce > donkey sauce
  • The Archive
  • The Atlantic Co.
  • Aureole
  • Read more…

This is a public service announcement! I have been getting queries about our library’s website that I am kind of tired of… tactics used by SEO trolls to get links.

Usually you can smell a V1a9ra-style spam email from a mile away, and taken as an aggregate I realize that the techniques below do look pretty obviously spammy.

The problem is they are rather isolated. And we are too nice! Librarians approach online reference interactions trying to be helpful and positive, so it doesn’t always occur to us to be suspicious if it looks on the surface like someone is just trying to help us out by sharing information. Even if we don’t understand everyone’s motivations for contacting us, we try to take them at their word. But look a little further… at the about page and the domain and the sites they link to, Google the phrases they use, and their whole house of cards crumbles. Also, what is their motivation, why in the world did someone take the time to develop a Thomas Hardy information page? Just for fun, to be referency?

Who are these people? I am guessing they are low paid freelancers working for giant Internet marketing firms with connections to the for-profit distance learning industry. (If this is all tl;dr, just scroll down to the last link on this post.)

For me, this whole biz is creating some urgency for me to do something about our old-school link directory. Just be aware if you get a request like this: ignore it, mark as spam, and do not link to them. Read more…

Todd and I have been living together for four years this summer. For a long time our method of settling up joint expenses was a magnetic notepad on the fridge with a pencil in a clippy magnet right underneath. We’d come home from dinner or the store and whoever paid (Did you pay? Did you give me cash? I forget! Is there a receipt?!) would write it down on the pad.

It was not ideal… mostly because I would always forget to write stuff down. And then I would get yelled at (gently of course) about that and feel guilt and hatred for bookkeeping. There is also the issue of recurring monthly expenses (cable, phone, newspaper, Netflix, YMCA) and forgetting to write those down. We would then tally everything up at the end of each month or, more likely, every two and a half months. This went on for three and a half years and I have the stack of cryptically-acronymed notepad pages to prove it.

We’ve reached a point in our relationship where we both now have smartphones with always-on 3G connections; this was not always the case, and up ’til now that made a technological solution more trouble than it was worth.

But now I bring you:

(Click to use this template)

Read more…

This might be the first in a series of posts. I’m not sure if it’s one of those things that is only interesting to me and my nineties teen nostalgia. Even so it might be of some anthropological use? Some day. These tapes are also a memory aid for recalling hilarious and awkward stories of the time.

This is a mixtape I made in preparation for my first big trip… a tour of France starting in Nice and ending in Paris. Two weeks, two school groups, two good friends. No parents. The summer between junior and senior year; the summer France hosted and won the World Cup. Read more…

Some of the things I cooked in 2011. I try to keep track but towards the end of the year I think I fell off a bit. Stars are things I made multiple times because they are my jam.

Some of these are links to the Christopher Kimball recipe empire (); if we are friends feel free to ask me for the recipe and I will send it to your e-mail inbox! If there is no link it’s probably because I forget the source or I just made something up ad-hoc Lauren show style.

As you can probably tell I am a fan of (and subscriber to) the CK recipe empire as well as the Martha. And the Bittman, though looking through these I really miss his blog on the Times website! I told you before about how I am doing recipes now and though that is still the main way, I have recently taken to snapping pics of recipes in library books and adding them to Evernote. Maybe a post on that soon? Most of these seem to be vegetarian, unless obviously not by the title.


  • Louis CK: Live at the Beacon Theatre (2011)
  • When Strangers Click (2011)
  • The Trip (2010) I think this was the only time I went to a movie theater this year!! Ahahahaha. Yes. Read more…

Starred ones are the best or notable for some reason.

  • 67 Burger
  • American Flatbread: who knew there was pizza in Vermont?
  • Amorina
  • Artisanal Read more…

At the end of sushi dinner, with Todd:

“You’re a bit hoarder. You have all this music, and all these games you’ve never played.”

“I can’t help it! It’s how I GREW UP.”

My name is Lauren and I’m a bit hoarder. I hoard digital music. (Also, apps and games that go on sale, but that might be the subject for another post.) The way I justified my behavior to Todd this evening is that when I was finishing sophomore year in college, I had a university-issued PC full of Audiogalaxy– and Epitonic-obtained mp3s and nowhere to transfer them. This was before CD burning drives, kids! There was some website I signed up for, I forget what it was called. It gave me a few mb of storage for free, something pitiful, and I selected the choicest and rarest of low-quality files to upload and then download to my next machine. I also might have put some on a zip drive. Olde-tyme rock and roll.

iTunes stars

I probably still have these files. I still have everything I have ever downloaded and ripped! I’ll be honest: some of the digital stuff I have accumulated over the years has never been listened to. It exists so that I could send my physical media into permanent storage. It exists to make me feel complete, like a serious music collector, an historian of obscure random ’60s, early ’80s, late ’90s rarities. Also that eMusic subscription that I had to justify every month with fresh downloads, or lose my ten bucks. So maybe if some of these weird cuts ever came up on shuffle I would “next song” repeatedly. WHAT OF IT. They are not taking over my living room floor or anything. Why throw away perfectly good music files?

Enough about digital hoarding — that’s not what this post is about! This post is about everyday uses of technology to make our lives better and more manageable. And what I want to tell you about is stars, baby. iTunes STARS. Read more…