The Squeaky Robot

A Meddling Robot in a Human's World

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Waves of Change

Posted on January 31, 2011

  Check out my new set of dishes on the left! They’re stackable. I bought them for $4 a piece to use as dish ware for my upcoming food photography endeavors. I think they’re modern, simple, and hell, they’re just great. In fact, my entire kitchen shelf is pretty sophisticated for a college student’s meager budget. I believe that an uncluttered home leads to an uncluttered mind. So yesterday my roommate and I started an impromptu revamping of our small space. On the list: make the trek to Michael’s and frame my favorite watermelon poster, decorate one of our walls completely with the shiny side of CD’s for a retro feel, maybe throw in a cool chair or two. There’s a long way to…

How to Tackle Procrastination

Posted on January 31, 2011

Procrastination is my biggest demon. The abominable habit has haunted me for years, and as I sit here in the library with mountains of work that just isn’t getting done, I’m thinking there has to be solution. Maybe soon enough I’ll come up with a quick list of Squeaky Robot Tips. You know what, I think I will right now. (This doesn’t count as procrastinating because it might help me later! Stop your eye rolling.) 1. Believe you can do it: After years of therapy, I discovered that one possible reason I was putting assignments off was because I didn’t think I was smart enough to do a good job. I was trying to avoid the magnitude of effort that it would require to…

Best Pho in Town

Posted on January 30, 2011

Behold: When life gets me down and my joints are squeaking lots and lots, I always turn to comfort food, and I recommend others do the same – in moderation of course. While homemade mac and cheese and food of that sort are beyond amazing, my escape – no – sanctuary has become a local vietnamese dive in Dupont Circle. I always get #48 – a large bowl of pho with a combination of rare beef and stringy brisket. Then I pile on sriracha and hoisin sauce and, quite literally, dive in. I learned the hard way that it’s a terrible date food, but I don’t care. If he is put off by the messy slurp-inducing soup and fails to see how exciting and…

Only a Reverie

Posted on January 29, 2011

I remember a lot of running. You’d think the way they run towards each other, desperately, madly in love would be stale, but that image made my heart beat faster so it couldn’t have been hackneyed. The grounds are mostly gravel. The sky overhead is sometimes bright and irrelevant, sometimes as dark as charcoal. It’s a stunning contrast against the house’s white walls with the rose bushes and vines and hyacinths growing against them. Transparent silks seem to be in every corner of my mind; that’s his daily uniform – white flowing shirt over white pants, but it’s also hanging from outdoor canopies, from arches covered in roses, and wooden lattice frameworks crafted out of thick unfinished lumber, contrasting the etherealness of the house.…

The Heart of the Matter

Posted on January 27, 2011

Just look at it. Thousands flock to DC’s Eastern Market every weekend. Need I explain why? Along with my bi-monthly cheese shopping spree, I normally get a serving of fried green tomatoes at the local dive. They’re even more delicious with the tartar sauce. Salty, bitter, crispy, and soft but not mushy inside. That’s the key to a great fried green. Moving to DC has motivated a new obsession with soul food. Many people move here from the south and bring they’re grandmothers’ recipes with them. And I am so grateful. One of my next targets is Horace and Dickie’s Seafood, and I’ve great expectations.

Tumblr vs. WordPress

Posted on January 27, 2011

I used Tumblr to launch my very first blog. I’d been a huge fan of Collegehumor at the time, and all my favorite actors and comedians on the site raved about Tumblr. They even posted a video about an “intervention” – one staff member didn’t have a Tumblr, so they all met in a large room, told him they cared for him, and that it was time to sign up and join the revolution. I thought this hilarious, and after considering starting a blog of my own, the natural choice seemed to be Tumblr. It was advertised as ridiculously easy to use and most importantly, fun. I’m very new to WordPress and I must admit, at first glance, site navigation takes some getting used…

Greeks Do It the Best

Posted on January 26, 2011

The seafood and meats found in Mediterranean countries is arguably some of the best. Because they’re difficult to replicate (I’m in college! Do you know the price of veal??), I have to resort to looking at my photographs and hoping that will satisfy me enough to stop craving this Greek fare. It never works, so I’ll just have to wait for my return. The best thing about this food is that it looks overly complicated to make, but it’s remarkably simple. Veal cooked in tomato stew covered in feta, seasonings, and herbs, all roasted in a clay pot. The picture below is self-explanatory, even though I consider any sardines served without lemon nothing short of an abomination.  

5 Ways to Better Your Day

Posted on January 26, 2011

Despite the colossally bad weather that has plagued the DC conglomerate, my day has started well. This got me thinking – how can I keep it going? 1. Rebuild bridges: Contact a friend you haven’t spoken to in a while. It’ll be fun to reminisce and the lucky person will appreciate the effort. 2. Keep your To-Do List short and sweet: List your two most important/urgent tasks of the day and only two. Work to accomplish those and then save the rest for another day. Why run around like a headless chicken when you don’t have to? 3. For God’s sake, listen to this song. 4. Eat a green, leafy vegetable as a meal: Your digestion and conscious will thank you. 5. Don’t take…

Coffee Breaks are Underrated

Posted on January 25, 2011

If I took anything away from Argentina, it would be the value of sitting and drinking coffee. Frequenting cafes is a way of life there, just like in Europe, and I just wish it were a custom in the US that I could partake in daily. The chaos, the rush, the go-go-go attitude here can be very off-putting and stressful, and I believe everyone would benefit from adopting this custom. It’s about enjoying the moment and not taking life too seriously. If I had any complaint about the students at my university, it would be that they’re too future oriented and not at all present oriented. Some kids can’t wait to graduate the moment they’re accepted in college. Who ever said these were supposed…

Grain of the Gods

Posted on January 25, 2011

I surprise myself sometimes. With the creation of this quinoa salad came the apex of my efforts to be healthy, and healthy it was. Literally every ingredient in the dish was green, with the exception of South America’s power grain. It’s just quinoa, cucumber, avocado, thyme, lime, salt , and pepper. I ate this in the late morning, and the salad left me chock full of energy until dinnertime. Who knew a salad could have such capabilities? I’d call this lunch a clear victory. Quinoa is extremely versatile. Use it as a side or make it the main attraction. Mix in vegetables, meats, cheese, and even fruit would work. This grain even serves as a great leftover food, even though there will never be any…