Summer Lovin’

Hey there, fellow conquerors! Here are some things that will surely spice up your summer. They’re already doing a number on mine.

TO EAT:

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BLACKSEED BAGELS

170 ELIZABETH STREET

TO DRINK:

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DEL’S SHANDY / ALLAGASH GINGER

GET THE SHANDY AT PROFESSOR THOM’S AND THE GINGER AT HARLEM PUBLIC

TO READ:

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LUCKY PEACH MAGAZINE

TO SEE:

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“CHEF” THE FILM

TO WATCH:

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“SILICON VALLEY” ON HBO

TO WEAR:

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DRESS AVAILABLE AT ANN TAYLOR LOFT

TO LISTEN:

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THE BLACK KEYS “TURN BLUE” / YOUNG THE GIANT “MIND OVER MATTER”

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Let Them Eat (GOOD) Cake

I didn’t have any cake on my birthday. I had a celebratory pinkberry, which was quite delicious, however not the same thing. Now before you congratulate me on committing to my diet hardcore enough to skip one of the bestest birthday traditions, you should know that cake did happen. It happened the day after. And it was good.

I’m at a new phase in my weight loss. In this phase, it’s no longer about completely restricting and just saying “no.” It’s now about letting myself indulge in things, while still maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Unfortunately, once I pop, I can’t stop, and I’m always one chip away from finishing the whole bag. So I’ve worked out a little system.

If I want something bad enough, I go out and get the best version of it. A one time isolated event of junk food eating that can’t carry into any other moment but the present. Pizza means a trip to Artichoke or Bleecker Street, ice cream cravings– Emack and Bolio’s, and on the odd chance I want a burger, I’m going to Shake Shack. Also, there’s a waiting process involved. The same way I force myself to wait 20 minutes to figure out if I’m still hungry after a meal, I try hold out to see if I can first mentally get over my appetite for diet destruction. This could be a week, a month, a few hours, a fortnight but in the case of my birthday, I only had to wait a day.

I was out with co-workers and kept getting texts from my roommate Staci about when I was coming home. This isn’t normal, but it’s not totally crazy either, so I didn’t think anything of it. When I finally did get back to the apartment, Staci and Marlo were waiting for me with this:

A birthday cake. And not just any birthday cake. THE birthday cake birthday cake from Momofuku Milk Bar. I’ve wanted this cake for two years and over the course of that time, during any trip to Milk Bar, one could hear me pointedly gushing to anyone who would listen that “that cake is all I ever want for my birthday.” Now, while a bunch of strangers never came through, my roommates did. And let me tell you, the cake was worth the weight. Pun definitely intended.

Decadent and sweet, it tasted like Katy Perry’s video for “California Girls.” The frosting on top was a little cream-cheesy and was covered in crushed cake truffles, encasing layer after layer of vanilla cake, sprinkles, and more of the amazing icing on the inside. If I had to hold out to eat my birthday treat, I held out for the best. And sharing it with some of my favorite people made it taste that much better.

So in the words of Janet Jackson, when it comes to treats, “let’s wait awhile.” Cause indulging isn’t entirely about eating the forbidden fruit, it’s the experience that makes it special.