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Drinking: Topo Chico twist of lime.
Just Tried: Middle Child Clubhouse. It’s fascinating, the grip a sandwich shop can have on the ethos of a city. In such a short time, Matthew Cahn’s deli-diner baby has become the defining Philadelphia eating experience, no cheesesteak in sight. Punky, eclectic, and down-to-earth, Middle Child is the restaurant equivalent of a skater who tends bar at the local dive through his art history masters program. He is real and he is full of surprises! Middle Child Clubhouse, their expansive second location, just opened in Fishtown. I was wowed by the thoughtful design. The full bar, the green tiling, the old school booths, it was like stepping into a scene from a John Hughes film. They even somehow snagged my favorite barista from K’far (hi Rel!). I’m looking forward to cushy fall lunches splitting our usual duo: a So Long Sal and a Surfer.
Feeling: Genuinely refreshed. Let me tell you about the coziest weekend I’ve had in a longggggg time. It was kind of perfect how it worked out, that no one in my circle was doing anything for Halloween. I got to not party and my body rewarded me with an afterglow I’m still savoring.
On Friday, Rachel and I had a 5 PM dinner at Parc. Do I need to launch into full defense of the early dinner? Because I can, but that’s not why we’re here. We ordered the French onion soup, the mac & cheese, the warm shrimp salad, and the steak frites, and everything was amazing because Parc is rien if not consistent. My girlfriend is a manager there and she sent some gold flecked dessert that I paired with a cappuccino to end on a sweet note.
Saturday morning, I was up early to go on a podcast. Then Andrew and I hit Middle Child Clubhouse for lunch, and Weckerly’s for ice cream after. The thing about Fishtown is if you go there for one thing, you have to do another, simply because there is so much quirky, tasty heaven in your general vicinity that to not indulge is tragically offensive. Saturday evening I was all over the place on whether I wanted to go out or stay in. We almost went to Warehouse on Watts for some house DJ, but a stroke of brilliance led us to The Velvet Underground documentary at the Ritz. We got buttery popcorn and cherry Coke and m&ms and paired with all that art and music, it was perfect nostalgia. We were both in full sweats to boot. Then I needed real food. I remembered an old favorite spot was down the street where they serve gorgeous half portions of pasta. I ordered spaghetti al limone. Half portions of pasta are a somewhat rare and incredibly slept-on offering. I’d tell you the name of the restaurant, but if you know, you know.
We slept until 10 AM Sunday morning. (If you didn’t read the words “Sunday Morning” to the tune of The Velvet Underground song, you have homework.) I can’t even explain how badly I needed that sleep, for whatever reason. I was revitalized. And with that revitalization, I proclaimed, “If I don’t watch It Takes Two, the 1995 film starring Mary-Kate & Ashley Olsen, I will simply perish.” When I tell you that movie hit better today than it did 25 years ago? It was like a warm hug for my brain. I also read my book, ate a bagel, got a coffee and pastry out, took a walk in the rain to Whole Foods, etc. Later that night, we watched Dune. Science fiction puts me in this fizzy state of curiosity and speculation. I loved it so much I’m already plotting my second go around.
And so concludes my cozy weekend. I love the way being restful and indulgent shows up on your face, like you just got an expensive facial despite all the sugar and sodium. Sometimes your soul thanks you like that.
Excited for: I pre-ordered EmRata’s book, My Body which comes out next Tuesday. I’m looking forward to hearing the model and influencer’s personal reckonings with image as commodity, navigating modern womanhood with nuance and humility. We’re clearly fans of hers here at BBM, despite the false claims that we resemble her.
Thinking: Andrew and I had a great talk before bed about the way friendships change in adulthood, and how the concept of a single best friend blurs. It was my best friend’s birthday yesterday. She would have been 31. I was crying thinking about how the one person I held in special distinction is dead. We met in 1st grade and had stuck together since, even living together as roommates in college, and again in adulthood in Philly. Though our relationship changed over the years, we still had that deep knowing that we were each other’s person. Now I have many people I call “best friends.” And for as beautiful as that is and as fortunate as I feel, there’s a lack of exclusivity that makes me feel replaceable. I feel sensitive to little things, like not being invited somewhere, or people’s closeness separate from me. It makes me question myself and my position in their lives. I’m trying to ground myself in the knowledge that I am loved… that a friendship shared doesn’t make it less valuable or supportive… that I have everything I need in myself, and it’s not my friends’ jobs to cater to my sensitivity (lol). I also think because I value female friendships so much, I take for granted the built-in bestie that is my boyfriend. Shout out to partners for being both sexy and a great hang.
Wanting: Since seeing The Velvet Underground documentary, I’ve been thinking a lot about Andy Warhol’s factory and the multimedia events he’d facilitate (see: Exploding Plastic Inevitable). I’m dying to design an event with music, film, spoken word, etc. to channel that collaborative, immersive spirit of the 60s. If this is something that interests you from an exhibition perspective, do reach out. I think it could be a great retreat from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), which brings me to…
Working on: A tangible plan to combat SAD. Today I was contemplating the singular week of the month when I have peace from PMS and my period. Compounded with cold weather and little sunlight, trying not to shrivel up is arduous. I’ll report back when I have something actionable in place that hopefully you, too, could find useful.
Recent Stuff: “The Jig is Up” is a short confessional piece about not paying rent for 7 months. Read it with a grain of flaky Maldon salt.