Monday, December 25, 2006

No reindeer in Austin, but they've got goats. And notes on the continuing decline of my standards.

I was staying in a cabin outside Austin with my friend Nic and his family for Christmas. While walking through the woods, we saw a bunch of goats on their way to a Christmas party of some sort. Check it out:

And here's me with Nic and his mom and dad. If me and Nic's family were in a band, this is probably what one of our band photos would look like:

His family not only opened their home to me for the holidays, but got me some cool presents too. Amongst the goodies were gift cards for Chinese restaurant, P.F. Chang's, and Banana Republic. That's kind of funny because when I first moved here, these two chain establishments brought to mind how Los Angeles had kind of lowered my standards. On my first week at work in LA, one of my co-workers invited me out for Chinese food. I accepted, but changed my mind when I heard it was P.F. Chang's. As a New Yorker, I didn't consider P.F. Chang's real Chinese food any more than I considered Pizza Hut to be Italian food. After being called a snob, I broke down and went:

Week 1 in LA: P.F. Chang's is not Chinese food.
Week 2 in LA: P.F. Chang's is alright I guess if there's nothing else around.
Week 3 in LA: Wow, I could go for some P.F. Chang's.

And in NYC, I would never go to Banana Republic. There were too many cool thrift stores in the East Village to even bother. But out here, it's all too spread out and sunny to be bothered hunting for clothes. Banana Republic is easy. LA is all about easy. Little by little, my standards get lowered in exchange for easy. And my gift cards will make it all even more Los Angeles-ier, I mean easier. Wise-ass rants aside, I really will enjoy the gifts.
Banana Republic does have cool socks, which I really need since all the ones I own have holes in them. And I've already become addicted to the Chicken Lettuce Cups at Chang's. Thanks Briseno family! (especially for the fancy kaleidescope Eddie and Harriett). Merry Christmas!

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