Tag Archive for Wicked Awesome

Will the Real Chocolate Tea Please Stand Up?

A hand holding a navy blue mug that reads I heart NPR and has dark brown cocoa tea inside it.

I have tried an assortment of chocolate-flavored teas over the years and trust me when I say they never came close to the real thing. Most reminded me of those sugar-free chocolates that have the consistency of chewing gum.

Now I’ve discovered the secret to low-calorie chocolate awesome–brewing cocoa nibs.

I don’t know how it never occurred to me to just brew the nibs straight. Humans have discovered all manner of tasty drinks by steeping plant pieces in hot water. It really should be no surprise that cocoa nibs make a smashing tea.

This chocolate tea is good, angels sing as hot water hits the nibs. Your tongue does the samba in anticipation of the glorious taste party that is about to happen. All the other chocolate teas in the world look on with jealousy and realize they have lost the battle of style vs. substance and even their fancy filigreed packaging can’t save them now.

It’s either nibs or go home. All other chocolate teasers are just fakers.

Okay. Done now. I promise.

I’m so glad one of my coworkers shared her nibs with me. Now I can squash my chocolate cravings with tea.

One side note: This is NOT a caffeine free tea. Steer clear of this tea if caffeine is a migraine trigger or otherwise makes living in your own body unpleasant…

No More Old Maids


I just turned thirty. I’m single, female, and have no kids.  A generation ago, folks would have slapped me with the “old maid” label and made tart comments about how empty my house must feel without a husband and children crammed into it.

But I live in a time when I can tell anyone who tries that bullshit to stuff it right back in the hole it came out of. The only “Old Maid” I intend to associate myself with is the card game.

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Spock: A Hero Without Emotion


Leonard Nimoy spent a good chunk of his acting career hating Spock. For an actor, I can see why being typecast as Spock would be frustrating. Why would any actor want to play a character with no emotions? From an actor’s point of view, Spock was a dry psychopath who had a few good quips. I can see how that would get boring.

Yet Spock broke boundaries. Here was this character who, despite his lack of emotional intelligence, wasn’t a mad scientist or a mass murderer or any of the other stereotypes Hollywood shoved introverts into back in the 1960s. He was a hero.

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Adventures in Asian Karaoke


Given my love for all things Asian and my tendency to belt out Broadway tunes mid-conversation, you’d be surprised I have never done Asian-style karaoke. I always had a vague idea what was involved: A group of friends crooning away in a kitschy private room whilst consuming copious amounts of overpriced booze. But I never knew how truly epic it is–until this weekend.

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Still Unpacking Asheville

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When I go on vacation, I tend to thoroughly clean my apartment before I leave. Because I know when I get home, vacation stuff will erupt from my suitcase and it will take me at least a week to get all the bits and pieces back to where they belong. As of this writing, my suitcase is still on the living room floor, reminding me there are some clean clothes in it I should consider wearing this week.

It has also reminded me there are many marvelous things about Asheville I have yet to convey on this blog. So here they are.

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The Best Snowpacalypse Ever

Bruce VilanchSnow is to North Carolina what oil is to water. You’re just minding your own business when this sticky crap comes out of nowhere and smothers you. You freak out for a bit. Then you realize there’s nothing you can do except endure it. Plus, it’s a bitch to clean off.

Things were pretty chaotic this past week. Cars were abandoned by the dozen. Buses got stuck going up hills. People endured epic 4-6 hour commutes. Raleigh even joined Atlanta in the Southern-snow-freakout meme category when some poor soul’s car caught on fire.

Keep all that in mind when I say that this snowtastrophe couldn’t have turned out any better.

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Come Laugh With Us

NCCAF-webLaughter is an under-appreciated medicine. Joining the DSI theater company has played a big role in helping restore my self-confidence. And now they’re throwing a ten-day comedy jam for the whole state!

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A Reason Why North Carolina is Wicked Awesome

The current state of our politics may be very dismal down here in North Carolina, but that hasn’t stopped North Carolinians from being Wicked Awesome in other ways. Take the dedicated volunteers at the Wake County SPCA. They put together an epic video set to my favorite ABBA song that encourages people to “take a chance” on adopting a shelter dog or cat.

Disco and Zura are both shelter animals (I got them at Paws4Ever), so I love that all these volunteers pooled their creativity to make this video happen for the stray dogs and cats of North Carolina. Watch the Wicked Awesome video below and consider positively reinforcing their work with a donation.

100 Days of Writing

This is a screenshot of my section of the Magic Spreadsheet, showing that I have written for 100 days.As of today, I have written every single day for 100 days straight. That’s a pretty damn good chain. One I hope to keep growing for a long time.

Now the secret sauce, the whispered spell, the talisman that led to this chain is not a fancy new iPad, a special app, or a handwoven notebook made from recycled sunflower leaves. It’s not a lucky pen, a spiffy hourglass, or a lollipop that was licked by Neil Gaiman. Nope. It’s a Google Doc.

Yet this is no ordinary Google Doc. It’s the collective calculator of literary calculus, the almighty slayer of perfectionist psyches, the engine of writers’ hopes and dreams, The Magic Spreadsheet.

::Cue choir of cheer-drunk angels::

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Did I just…? Oh, I DID! I Finished Writing A Novel!

This is a picture of my post-novel completion beer with me giving a thumb's up.Last night, I put the finishing touches on the first draft of my current novel project. Scrivener says the draft is around 120,000 words.

However, I never got around to telling Scrivener that it shouldn’t count any of the notes I wrote or those five chapters that I rewrote entirely.

So the draft isn’t as bloated as Scrivener tells me it is, but it’s still way too damn big.

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