Abra Goes

on theatre, running, writing, and looking up

Archive for the ‘looking up’ Category

Happy Father’s Day – from Elvis

leave a comment »

Happy Father’s Day!

Last Father’s Day I found these German chocolate bars that I knew my dad would love. So I went to the post office and packaged three of the giant sized bars into a padded envelope with my card and sent it off to far away NJ.

It must have been a hot day because I remember stopping in the grocery store, Barnes & Noble, and the Tea Lounge on the way home just to stand in the air conditioning. When my dad called three days later to thank me for the envelope full of melted chocolate, I understood the post office lady’s smirk, especially after RC handed her his package of chocolate bars … addressed to India.

This story has a happy ending though. Chocolate may melt in the summer, but it also re-hardens in the freezer and I’m fairly certain it didn’t go to waste. Even if a few pieces tasted gluey and he mistook bits of envelope for marshmallow.

I do like to think that if I were a postal worker and some friendly, albeit absent-minded lady handed me an envelope of chocolate bars I would say, “Hmmmm, maybe movies tickets or a gift card would travel better.” or “Is this the kind of chocolate that doesn’t melt in the heat?” I don’t know.

It probably didn’t help that the return address was to Elvis.

How will I top last year? Not only should my surprise be either edible or breathing, it will definitely be belated, and perhaps life-size. And of course, it will arrive in a big mushy envelope by regular mail addressed to “Dad”.


Written by abragoes

June 15, 2008 at 5:13 pm

Posted in looking up

Tagged with

Baby girl on her way, guard all wallets

leave a comment »

I am bound for baby town tonight, a.k.a. Baby’s R’Us. In about a month and a half I will be the much idolized favorite aunt of a baby girl named Dylan Grace.

It’s not that I’m scared of babies. It’s that they’re weird. In my adult life, I’ve spent zero time around them, unless you count the babies I back away from on the subway. Still, I want to be the Dylan’s favorite aunt and step one is to buy it something.

Fortunately, my sister did a registry to eliminate the guessing. Somehow the little thing is already burning a hole in my wallet. For instance: car seats. There’s a perfectly functional car seat for $40. And then there’s an awesome, stylish car seat for $140,000,000. And I feel guilty not emptying my bank account for the better seat.

Thanks, Dylan.

To make up for it, I’m going to buy her baby running shoes and take her running. Just as soon as she gets born.

Written by abragoes

May 29, 2008 at 6:05 pm

Posted in looking up

Tagged with

He can see you, but can you

leave a comment »

spot the savage beast in this picture?


Written by abragoes

May 22, 2008 at 2:03 am

Posted in looking up

Grandma says: Get outside

leave a comment »

It’s a beautiful day. Warm, bright, and 9-10 weeks from launching Mission Freelance.

In honor of Earth Day and my Grandma’s birthday, my goal today was to not use plastic. Not once.

Let’s see the many ways I’ve failed to save the planet today:

-plastic lid on my coffee to-go cup

*could have brought my own travel mug (though the lid and lining are plastic, they’re not immediately thrown away)

-plastic bags our lunch was delivered in

*could have picked up my own lunch and put it in a reusable bag or even better – brought my own lunch

-magazine purchased not printed on recycled paper

*could have not purchased the mag. could have read some content online..I’m trying to figure out if pubs printed on special tree farmed paper really are more green because they use less energy than recycling.

That’s it. What did I do that was positive? I carried my library books instead of taking a plastic bag…happy birthday, Grandma.

Written by abragoes

April 22, 2008 at 9:11 pm

Posted in looking up

Tagged with ,

For all the lawns of Dandelion weed seeds

with one comment

I wish this story in the Christian Science Monitor by Miriam C. Daum existed when I was a kid, getting yelled at for blowing dandelion weed seeds over my dad’s lawn. I could have used it to explain what I could not articulate to him then: Dandelions belong everywhere; to be eaten, smeared, plucked into bouquets, roasted as coffee (who knew?), extracted for honey, and spread with giant gusts of late summer breath.

A perfect example of taking something so everyday as your appreciation for dandelions and stringing a personal essay full of research, insights and plenty of arguments on behalf of this beautiful yellow flower; striking a careful balance between nostalgia, opinion and fact.

My fondest memories of playing on sports teams include

1) picking dandelions in the outfield and storing them in my softball mitt

2) smearing the year petals across my cheeks and forehead, to intimidate opposing soccer teams, of course.

My favorite excerpts:

But maybe in their happiest task of all – dandelions are a children’s flower. Unburdened by adult “do-not-touch” admonitions like those for thorny roses, dainty delphiniums, or elegant orchids, dandelions seem to welcome the embrace of small, sweaty hands.


There, “dandelion children” is a term describing those who, although neglected by their parents and left to fend for themselves, somehow keep their faces “turned toward the sun” and, in spite of all, survive and bloom and grow.

Read the whole essay here.

Written by abragoes

April 10, 2008 at 7:24 pm

Posted in looking up, writers

Tagged with

Saturn’s Rings Narrow April 14-15

leave a comment »

Nasa Science News reports that Saturn’s rings will appear to narrow April 14-15.

This is an opportunity to witness the same phenomenon the dumbfounded Galileo. Why he didn’t realize that Saturn’s rings “were a disk-shaped swarm of orbiting moonlets ranging in size from microscopic dust to tumbling houses” and that “ As Saturn goes around the sun, it periodically turns its rings edge-on to Earth—once every 14-to-15 years. Because the rings are so thin, they can actually disappear when viewed through a small telescope.” … is beyond me.

So mark your calendars or you’ll forget. I don’t know if the rings are visible by the naked eye, but Saturn is.

Written by abragoes

April 4, 2008 at 2:24 pm

Posted in looking up

Tagged with

Gotta go outside – STAT

leave a comment »

You’re at a place you’ve never been before. Under a vast sky with no buildings in sight. Still out of breath, you only wish you could open your eyes wider. There’s no place in the world you’d rather be, and there’s noone who could make you leave before you’re ready.

As no two days in the outdoors could ever be exactly the same, the photos we take capture how we experience a place- its texture, pace, sound, the taste of the air.

Though most of us can’t take the next flight out to the Grand Canyon, the beauty of the Great Outdoors is that, in some form, you are always only a train ride away. For instance, this summer, I discovered that a 45 minute train ride North out of Grand Central will put me on the Appalachian Trail, and lead the unsuspecting hiker through a field of bulls no less.

It may still be cold, but suck it up. National Geographic Travel is giving us until March 15th to submit the greatest outdoor photo ever.

Intelligent Travel wants to know if you can beat the competition…

ABRA MILES – 10 / 42 for March

Written by abragoes

March 12, 2008 at 2:05 pm