Sunday, January 25, 2009


Dear Susans,

I never ended up making a New Year’s Resolution. Right now though, I resolve to stop doing things that will make me nauseous.

You see, I’ve been feeling off since eating brunch this morning. Jessica and I completed our Sunday ritual of going to the local diner to stuff ourselves with breakfast food and rehash what happened to us over the weekend. She always gets an omelet with peppers, onions, tomatoes, and cheddar, I always get an omelet with feta cheese and an English muffin on the side, and I always feel like crap for hours afterwards. This morning in particular I didn’t hesitate to undergo this masochistic ceremony, because just last night I had seen Notorious with some friends and my crush, Daniel. This was prime diner gossip material, despite the fact that I had made absolutely no new progress in this endeavor (and really, because of it).

Anyway, after my breakfast binge I nearly fell asleep in the middle of the afternoon while reading in bed, when I realized that I Cannot do this. I had just made a list of all the productive things I could do today and knew I would regret it if I let myself take a nap. So I finished my tea and took the subway to the garment district to buy fabric for a Zabuton (meditation sitting pad) I’ve been meaning to sew.

It was after I got home, around when I was hopelessly trying to cut in a straight line, that I first noticed the nausea. It felt exactly as if I had been spinning around in a swivel chair, or like that time we all rolled down the hill after swinging too long in Guilford (the infamous itchy sleepover). But I had done no spinning, swinging or rolling, and realized the queasiness had to be the result of the subway ride home, which did seem a little more jerky than usual, in combination of course with all I had put my stomach through earlier.

I tried to ignore it and worked on my sewing project while watching The Ice Storm. I had diner, then made some cookies, as the dough had already been opened for a couple days, it and would probably have gone bad soon (or so I rationalized). While talking to my mom on the phone, I thought nothing of eating all but one of the cookies that had just come out of the oven. Needless to say, this made everything worse and I laid down on my bed to do the only thing I felt capable of doing for the rest of the night: dicking around online. Now comes what did me and my poor stomach in: I found this optical illusion and proceeded to stare at it for at least five minutes, trying to determine why or how it was moving.

I never did find out, but I proceeded to get even more nauseous and felt even more useless than I had all day. But I was still fascinated with this illusion, and determined to post something on this blog before the end of this weekend. So I was originally just going to post this image with an apology and promise to write soon. But then I saw that there have been more entries (I thought for some reason that I would get an e-mail when a new post was made, so I haven’t read anything since that first one until tonight). Just reading your posts made me feel more human than I had all day and I realized that I could, and would, plow through my nausea and finally write an entry.

One last note about my New Year’s Resolution. I suppose I did have an informal one- simply to do what I know will make me feel better and avoid doing what I know will make me feel worse. And if I strip away all the nausea building activities from today, I can see that I have worked towards this resolution today (largely thanks to the inspiration you Susans have lent me in posting this last month). And just before writing this I tried out my Zabuton (with my Zafu). It feels like the nausea's already retreated from my body, the seat's so stable.



  1. Very existentialist...Sorry, nausea always puts me in mind of Sartre.

    Also, holy shit that optical illusion is freaky deaky.

  2. I once started reading that. As I was writing this I considered giving it another go, as it's sitting under my desk in a pile of "books I've been meaning to finish/start." Did you read/enjoy it?

  3. Yea, it always stuck with me because the idea of nausea is so visceral. (And apparently comes from the same root as "nautical," or so I'm told.) I'm reading Camus' "The Fall" now...

  4. Anything with feta in it makes me nauseous. I think you should consider cheddar.

  5. Just the word feta makes me nauseous.

  6. I am in general pro-cheddar, especially for my fried egg sandwiches. But for an omelet feta melts better. I mean, sometimes you get a cheddar omelet and it's like a hunk of cheddar just stuck in the middle of the omelet.

    I'd imagine you have access to very fine cheddar up there. Perhaps Vermontians are better at making cheddar omelets than Brooklynites.

  7. I think the thing is this: because feta is a crumbly cheese, people are more likely to put less of it into an omelette, and to distribute the cheese better-- this is in contrast to non-crumbly cheeses. If you grate cheddar and then let it sit until someone orders a cheddar omelette, it's going to clump back together. And then when your order comes up and some cook in a hurry grabs a handful of cheddar to put in your omelette, he's not going to bother separating the clump, whereas feta will separate on its own and be more evenly distributed within the omelette. The only other crumbly cheese I can think of offhand is blue cheese, and I don't think that would be good in an omelette. So maybe you should just order an egg sandwich?

    My boss just named a sandwich after me. It's called Liza's Dream, and it's falafel, yogurt/cucumber sauce and feta. It's not really my dream because I think it's odd to eat cheese with falafel, and I don't like feta, but I appreciate the gesture.