Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Best of the best 2009: Joint blog project

Happy New Year, everyone! I wish everyone only the best in 2010. Here is my very random "Best of" list for 2009. Hope you like it.

Best experience:
Happily relinquishing my illusion of control and contented self-sufficiency, because I want this man to always be on my team.

Best home project finally realized:
Building the back deck I've wanted since I bought my house, and then finally having a deck party with dear friends and visiting parrots.

Best trip:
Going to Florida to see my dad get married, even when I was driving back to the airport after three hours of sleep and every time I stopped for gas I kept finding more magic-markered wedding wishes the kids wrote all over my rental car.

Best creative activity:
Haiku postcard exchange, which meant I received not just bills and junk mail in my mailbox, but lovely words such as these from my friend Shawn M.:
your song, a current
strangers walking parallel
sad note sunshine air

Best songs to sing along to at the top of your lungs in the car:
"I Never Had Nobody Like You," M. Ward
"Carbon Monoxide," Regina Spektor (Couldn't find a link to this one, sorry!)
"Twist the Knife," Neko Case (Couldn't find a link to this one either...)

Best musical rediscovery:
The Smiths, all of 'em, but especially live versions of "What Difference Does It Make" and "London" almost make me long for teenage angst again (almost!) so I can do it properly and with a better soundtrack.

Best cheesy pop songs to dance around your house to:
"Umbrella," Rihanna (Thanks for reminding me of the joys of commercial pop, Aimee G.!)
"Heartbeats," The Knife (Synthesizer yumminess.)
"St. Petersburg," Brazilian Girls (I defy you not to dance to this one, sniffle-ushka.)

Best fragrance discovery:
Timbuktu, L'Artisan Parfumeur
How can incense be both smoky and green and speak like a living thing? I have no idea how Bertrand Duchaufour did it, but this one has just the most intriguing things to tell you. Robin at NowSmellThis did a review of Timbuktu that is so similar to my experience that I'm gonna be lazy and just link to that rather than bother with my own at the moment.

Best full-bottle purchases:
Muscs de Koublai Khan, Serge Lutens, from the lovely Nazrin at the -- I've repeatedly contemplated traveling to Paris for the sole purpose of getting this skanky wonder, and it finally went export. So when you think about it, I just saved the cash for an entire trip to Paris by buying this bottle. Man, I'm so thrifty!

Woman, Ormonde Jayne, at when they had their fall sale -- I've wanted this one for a while, too, and now that I can indulge in spraying it rather than dabbing it from a little vial, it has revealed even more hidden depths and twisty hemlock notes up front. This stuff makes me feel all mysterious, even when I'm just in my pj's sick in bed with a cold.

Best website discovery:
thehypemachine grabs and compiles music tracks people post on the web for free. It's a total win for those of us who hate assessing a new iTunes purchase with a 20-sec-or-whatever clip, and I couldn't have linked up this post without it, either.

There are many other participants in this "Best of the best 2009" project--go read their blogs, too!

First of all, many thanks to Elena at Perfume Shrine for initiating and organizing this joint blog project.