los angeles

hello from the air! i am en route from los angeles to maui with alana, who is asleep already, lily, who is crying about hunger games, and stephanie, who is dusted with a pleasant coating of furikake due to a minor snacksplosion upon boarding. i can’t blame her, we were up before the sun to catch our flight after a very wild night of meat, gossip, and backstreet boys sing-alongs in koreatown. my stop in los angeles was entirely too short but i managed to squeeze in time with loved ones and some very meaningful firsts—some more overdue than others:

  1. my first bite of spam. wow! spam musubi packs a deceptive amount of satisfaction into one compact delight. it’s, like, fried baloney sandwich satisfying and upon first bite it shot straight to the top of my list of things i’m most excited to experience in hawaii. 
  2. my first time subbing out the bagel in my bagel and lox with *wait for it* a freshly baked popover, c/o karen. it was a textural revelation since lox and popovers require a very similar amount of energy to be exerted in order to bite through them. i would do this again, absolutely.
  3. my first visit to canter’s!!! you didn’t tell me they had beaver mustard! what a jolly condiment. ordering a pastrami sandwich and an egg cream so far from new york made me a little uneasy, but from the comfort of a big squishy booth and over talk of paparazzi and time travel, i slowly settled in for a proper first canter’s experience. 
  4. my first shaved ice. which also jumped right to the top of my hawaii list. so fluffy, so sweet, so perfect with black sesame mochi bits hidden throughout. 
  5. my first time going directly from an 85-course korean barbecue carnivorgy to an alta california taco obligation where no menu item was left unordered and no hyperbolic shouts of joy were spared during the passing of the chorizo vampiros. 
  6. my first spork tattoo sighting. should i reconsider my decision not to get a tattoo in hawaii?
  7. my first dollar taco. small but extraordinarily mighty. 
  8. my first gjusta, my first olive & june, my first boozy push-up pop (!!!).
  9. my first time meeting adrianna, karen, lynn, and kelly, who are all every bit as wonderful as their internet presences suggest.
  10. my first zankou chicken garlic sauce, which looks like nothing but tastes too good to be true.

phew! i am off to go have some seconds now. seconds of water, because getting dehydrated on a plane is a fear that i have. thank you, los angeles and all of your lovely people, for a perfect pre-hawaii weekend <3 <3 <3