so i took a day off from work and recruited my dad to go to ikea with me so that i could pick up a new dresser. i told him i needed his help and van to get the boxes back to my place. i didn't implicitly state that i would also like for him to put it together, but he's been a dad a long time and he just knew. eighty thousand nuts and bolts and three hours later, and my dresser was born. it's a beaut, thanks to this guy.
i found a recipe online for a dessert shooter that i wanted to make for doug's 50th birthday party, but it used an ingredient called mango puree. this is not something i typically see at byerly's and, indeed, cub didn't have it, either. but quickly i thought about the fine folks of india who share a love for mangoes with me, and i knew a stop at the indian grocery down the street would do the trick. indeed, about one foot inside the door as the smell of curry filled my nose, there was a giant display of sweet mango pulp that would do the trick. thank u, india.
exhausted from a long week of work and preparing for doug's birthday party, friday night doug suggested dinner at zen box izakaya and i jumped at the chance. i love this place and the owners are super nice and the food is fresh and light. three asahi beers and several small plates later, including these dishes of squid and octopus, and the weight of the week lifted from my shoulders.
doug turned 50 today. a half century, and nary a single gray or thinning hair. he's quite fortunate and handsome. i've been waiting for months to give him his gift. during our visit to japan last year, we were lucky enough to stay at the gorgeous grand hyatt tokyo, where we fell in love with just about every aspect of the hotel. top on his list (next to the amazing soaking tub and japanese toilet!) was the in-room robe, a kimono style that fit him perfectly. we discussed that we should buy one before going back to hong kong but forgot before we left. luckily, my friend lisa, who we were visiting in asia, stays at the grand hyatt tokyo relatively frequently so last summer i asked her if she could pick one up for me during one of her business trips and bring it home to minnesota with her during a visit. she did so in august and i've been waiting ever since to give it to him, along with the matching slippers! doesn't he look cute?
this is the worst advertising campaign ever and it seems to get worse every day. three times now i've seen this person standing on the corner of lowry and central in front of the bowling supply store, wearing a cheap statue of liberty costume. the first time i saw her (or him, i'm not sure), she was waving a hand-painted sign that said "instant refunds." the second time, in the same costume in front of the same store, was another vague sign about tax refunds but still without the name or location of the business. today she simply stood on the corner in our sub-zero temperatures, which really made me feel bad for her, kind of swaying in a quasi-dance and she held no sign at all. doug and i surmised that she's trying to convince folks to come on down to liberty tax, about three quarters of the block down on central, but who knows? there's also a jackson hewitt tax shop on the block. i'm no marketing genius, but i just want to stop her and mention that perhaps the name of the tax preparation shop somewhere on her person wouldn't be a bad idea.