ilona the pest

insecurity + narcissism = awesome!

Friday, December 29, 2006

happy new year

happy holidays, everybody. sorry i've been so out of touch, but i figured not many people are spending a lot of time on the internet this week anyway. i was out of town last weekend hanging out with my fam for xmas, and this weekend i'm going to vegas for new years. see you next year...

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

pumpkin pie

i made a pumpkin pie this weekend! i was pretty proud, 'cause i haven't baked anything in, i don't know, several years, at least.

unfortunately (or fortunately?), it turns out my sister doesn't care for pumpkin, and we don't get a whole lot of visitors, so i'm basically in charge of eating this entire pie myself before it goes bad. it's a formidable challenge, but i love pumpkin pie, so i think i can do it.

Monday, December 18, 2006

bacon-of-the-month club

in case anyone is still trying to figure out what to get me for christmas: this.

(thanks to agr for the tip-off!)


just fyi: as i think i've said before, i moderate the comments on this here blog. i am not likely to publish a comment that uses cringe-worthy, made-up, sexist slang terms (e.g. "beta manlet"), or that calls me by a weird nickname that you made up.

however, weird nicknames made up by my actual friends are fine.

Sunday, December 17, 2006


there's a great article in The New York Times Magazine by the philosopher peter singer about the moral duty to give to charity, specifically to alleviate poverty. the unavoidable conclusion is that it's immoral to spend money on luxuries when that money could be used to save lives. of course, most people in this country who can afford to (including me) do engage in that kind of immorality, all the time. but just because everyone does it doesn't mean it isn't wrong.

my friend james is on the right track with his "10 over 100" pledge - sign up here! - trying to persuade people to commit to giving away at least 10% of their annual income in excess of $100,000. if everyone did that, it would be a huge improvement over the amounts most people currently give - but it also seems like a rather low bar. the rich can afford to give way more than 10%. and even people who earn under $100,000, like me, should be able to stretch to give away 10%.

in sum: we didn't do anything to deserve all this wealth and comfort. and other people do deserve (and don't have) basics like food, clean water, and health care. is that disparity okay with you, or are you going to do something to help fix it?

Friday, December 15, 2006

the new yorker

i just bought my first ever issue of The New Yorker. i was at the drugstore, and i wanted to pick up some light reading (as in, physically light) for the subway rides. i had planned to get a new celebrity gossip magazine, but i didn't see any that particularly appealed to me.

The New Yorker has always seemed sort of sexy and nerdy and fascinating, but also intimidating and possibly boring. i always thought of it as something that grown-ups - like, other people's parents - read. but a few of my law school friends read it regularly, and even subscribed. and they can't be that much more intelligent or sophisticated than i. (can they?)

as i stood scanning the magazine racks at the drugstore today, looking hopelessly at the pathetic offerings, the dec. 18 issue was staring me in the face, haranguing me silently (don't i want to improve my meager knowledge about the proposal from the iraq study group? don't i want to understand the anthropology of jihad?). so i finally decided to cross that intimidating threshold. and it was easy! i read about five pages on the subway ride home from work, and they weren't boring at all. yet.

so, basically, i'm a real grown-up now. a sophisticate. an intellectual. soon i'll be throwing dinner parties and sharing my views on foreign policy with diplomats and historians, debating the merits of contemporary american fiction with book editors and poets. but i promise i'll never forget my humble origins as a reality-tv-obsessed street urchin.

Thursday, December 14, 2006


but after all these days of being a shut-in, my ranking on the internet scrabble club just went up to 709 - an all-time high for me, and the first time i've made it above 700. so i do feel pretty pleased about that.

happy things

wt told me to write about something happy. is my blog a downer? okay, here are the happy things going on this week:

- i was super-sick at the beginning of the week (in bed and sleeping 18 hours a day, plus a lot of other more unpleasant symptoms) but i'm pretty much better now, which is great.
- i've been playing a lot of scrabble, and i keep getting bingos (i.e. using all your tiles on one move), which is rare for me 'cause i'm generally not great at making long words. the last two: EXCITES, GIRTING. that last word i thought i was making up but it turned out to be valid. yes!
-i bought a cute tank top for work at ann taylor
-the weather in NY has been unseasonably warm this week

ok, that list is pretty pathetic. in truth, it's been a pretty crummy week, and i've mostly slept through it. i watched the two-hour special of "britain's next top model" last night, and i even thought that was terrible. (and you know what a fan i am.) and tonight's OC episode was probably the worst, dumbest episode EVER.

i admit it! i'm a downer. i love to complain. AAARGGGGHHH. whew. now i feel so much more free. :)

Sunday, December 10, 2006

the kite runner

this weekend i read The Kite Runner. someone gave it to me for christmas a couple of years ago but it looked potentially boring so i never got around to reading it til now. it's not boring, and it's a really good book, but it has parts that are so traumatic and upsetting that it was really difficult to read straight through. i had to put the book down and look out the train window and try to remind myself that the world isn't all evil and sadness. fortunately i finished it this afternoon when i was at home, alone in my room, so i could cry freely and get it all out.

the book does offer an inspiring lesson of redemption, courage and love. i suppose it's hard to appreciate those noble possibilities of human existence unless you first witness the cruelty and cowardice that brings them into relief.

you should read it only if you have a strong stomach for tragedy.

Friday, December 08, 2006

the coldest day

this was by far the coldest day i've experienced in - what, nine years? the extra-warm, puffy winter coat that i bought a couple of months ago made its debut, but even so my face, ears and toes were frozen solid by the time i walked the five blocks from my house to the subway this morning.

frozen body parts aside, the whole thing is kind of exciting, too, as any new (or familiar-but-long-forgotten) experience can be. and anyway the cold air is invigorating! yeah!

here's a picture of me bundled up against the cold:

just kidding! that picture was taken last winter, in SF. but i did wear that same scarf today.

my sister is out of town, and i don't have any social plans this evening, so i intend to celebrate the advent of winter and my alone-time as follows:
- drinking a mug of hot cider with rum (does that make me an alcoholic? it's just so delicious, and delightfully naughty.)
- making some bacon (i've been thinking about bacon all day)
- playing scrabble online
- finishing my book

i'm so decadent! life is good.

p.s. did anyone catch taylor's reference to her blog on The OC last night? so awesome. we are clearly soul-sisters in uber-geekdom.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

i love caridee. eom.

season finale of the evil show that doesn't let its writers unionize

i am very excited. it will look so lovely on my big new cable-enhanced television set. and i'm even going to entertain a friend or two in my newly liveable living room, recently furnished with a couch and ottoman, and cleaned (mostly) of the boxes that cluttered it up for the past two months.

but the show is anti-union - and thus un-democratic and un-american - so you shouldn't watch it. (especially if melrose wins. ew!)

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

out of it

sorry it's been a while. i was in mexico for four days, attending the most blown-out (fancy, decadent, over-the-top) wedding ever. while it was an interesting experience, i spent most of the weekend feeling stressed out and depressed, due to a combo of legitimate personal drama and my own inexplicable idiosyncratic weirdness.

now i'm back and still feeling a little depressed and unloved and antisocial. all i want to do is read the book i started over the weekend - The Name of the Rose, by umberto eco. it's kind of a thinking man's Da Vinci Code. it's both a page-turning mystery and a fascinating history of the early and medieval catholic church.