In 2000, Dave Eggers published a book called Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius. And it was. He was. He IS. I remember the scenes of flick-fights with his little brother Toph. He was raising the kid; their parents had died. Domestic tragedy and wild moody humor punctuate the book, feeling exactly like the ride of grief. I love that book.
For his first book tour – as a pretty much not-known guy – Eggers did a reading tour across country that featured regular folk in the place of Lena Dunham’s fabulous friends who will join her in a kind of stand up comedy/performance/discussion/ticket-price-includes-hardcover book event.
Eggers didn’t have fabulous friends. Or if he did, he wasn’t inviting them on his book tour. Instead, he invited local firefighters to do a demonstration of stop, drop and roll. Were there Shriners on mini-bikes blowing through the bookstore as well? I can’t remember the details, but they were all regular folk and it was funny and hip and it worked. He even put his editor’s phone number in the book and recommended every reader call it. We loved that.
Eggers came out of the gate a fully-formed, naturally great writer. His subjects are intimate and global at the same time. I loved his circus tour and think about it still.
Lena Dunham’s arc as a writer is yet to be seen. I know her circus tour will sell tons of books and be way fun, but will it forward Lena’s life as a writer? Doubtful. That happens one on one, with the reader.
You are never going to get anywhere is you don’t get any sleep: Life is simply not a Facebook start-up. Most of us have to run a long game and, if you have one brain cell in your body at 25 (believe me, I DIDN’T), I would have taken a lot better care of my insides. The outsides were fine. For the most part, I’ve just needed shampoo.
Today, I am a former underwear model turned disco queen turned publicist turned book publisher. What a horrific list. But, I have learned a little something about playing the long game: YOU HAVE TO SLEEP. No, you can’t do it when you’re dead. And it turns out it is cumulative so you can catch up on the weekend. But eventually, YOU HAVE TO SLEEP.
Your brain regenerates at night, working hard to establish new electrical pathways based on your newest experiences and learning. You have NEUROPLASTICITY (oh, everyone’s talking about it!), which means your brain is always forming, informing and reforming pathways. For this, YOU MUST SLEEP.
You can use Ambien or you can drink one of these http://amzn.to/1sLWNVU filled with beet greens, kiwi, unsweetened almond milk, raw honey, green tea, bananas, dark cacao power, cinnamon, lavender or chamomile teas and infusions, spinach, kale or fresh herbs, whatever pleases you, all chosen from a long list of hyper-relaxing foods.
Quit being so off calendar. Show up and be alert. Get sleep the night before. Let your brain work.
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If you drink large amounts of alcohol on any one given day – or just enough so that you feel happy and the next day, well, sad – you need The Hangover #Smoothie.
I wrote it after I wrote this http://amzn.to/1u5bkuv but that book is full of hangover cures as well. This recipe is just a little more “targeted.”
Hangovers are comprised of the following: dehydration, headache, inflamed stomach and digestive tract, and you’ve peed out a bunch of nutrients your body wants. (It’s not just brain cells that die in the name of good fun…) Your body needs to rebuild in a hurry if you are not going to lose this whole day to your merry-making from the day before.
You’ll need spinach and parsley to power-load nutrition, green tea, coconut water or nut milks for quick rehydration, Vitamin C to help your body metabolize alcohol, and bananas, honey and milk to coat your inflamed digestive tract. Good luck.
The Hangover Smoothie
Banana, honey and milk coat the digestive linings and lower inflammation. The lemon, spinach and parsley power-load some of the vitamins and minerals you released into the universe last night. Vitamin C from the lemon and greens will help your body metabolize the alcohol faster. Drink up.
1 ripe banana
1- 2 tablespoons raw honey
Juice of 1 lemon
1 cup spinach
1/2 cup parsley with stems
Cow, almond or cashew milk to cover
1-2 baby aspirins, crushed (optional)
2 teaspoons cinnamon
Put the banana, honey and lemon in the blender. Pulse. Add the spinach, parsley and milk to cover. Add the aspirin (if using) and the cinnamon. Turn the blender on and whirl, dropping ice through the top to make the drink cold and thick. Serve.
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This sandwich is whole wheat, peanut butter and sliced banana, three foods that have tryptophan (that calming amino acid found in turkey.) It is also in other foods; they’re just foods I prefer to drink.
When writing this http://amzn.to/1t5yxbC I learned that peanut and almond butter – any nut butter for that matter – relaxes, calms and stabilizes, so now I put 1/2 cup in my green smoothies. I just don’t want all the whole wheat bread, so I put the other things in my green smoothies.
That’s the beauty of the things: You can get a lot of HUGE nutrition in one single glass. Nut milks jack up the relaxing nature of your smoothie as well.
I can finally drink my healthy eating and that’s a good thing.
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Turns out that red grapes turn on three of your longevity genes. That’s right, the DNA that helps you live longer.
Grapes get your FoxOs, SirTis and PBEFs revving, those 3 genes that say so much about how long you will live. Sure everybody has heard of “the French paradox” – the red wine drinking that also magically keeps arteries clear – and resveratrol, a plant compound that is put in all kinds of products and sold everywhere from Sephora to GNC.
But it is the FoxOs…and SirTis….and the PBEFs you want to rev up….IF, that is, you’ve really invested well in your 401K. You’ll live forever!
I learned about grapes writing this thing http://amzn.to/1szhjZG Now I keep a sealed baggy of frozen red seedless grapes in my freezer and throw by the handful into my green smoothies every day.
I’m not Bridgette Bardot, but I ain’t bad.
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Turns out that, when it comes to fruit, some have more calming effects than others. I went googling around and found a study from Duke. They study food there a great deal and have a renowned weightloss center.
Anyway, would you believe plantains topped the list of fruit with serotonin? Not the green ones you fry and cover with hot sauce? The gushy black ones are best.The ones you can’t brush up against or they change shape. I find myself both drawn and repelled by them.
Here’s the list of the fruits that have the most calming effects:
1. Plantain, ripe
I didn’t know that when I wrote this http://amzn.to/1vkzaSm so I’m giving you a recipe now:
CALM-A-THON GREEN SMOOTHIE
1 plantain, black, ultra-ripe, peeled and chunked
2 cups pineapple chunks or frozen, unsweetened
Coconut water to taste
3 kiwi, peeled and chunked
1 cup tender spinach leaves
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 tablespoon raw honey
Put the plantain, pineapple and a cup of coconut water in the blender. Combine. Add the kiwi, spinach, cinnamon, honey and more coconut water to cover. Whirl. With the motor running, drop ice cubes through the top of the blender.
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Recently, we all saw Ebola survivors donating their recently toughened blood to save the lives of those in the throes of this horrific thing. The antibodies created in the blood of survivors is injected into the sick. The sick then become well.
While there is no science to support this next theory (nobody but beekeepers can get rich), there is plenty of other evidence: Eating raw honey eases seasonal allergies. Just ask Grandma.
Why? Well, bees flit from flower to flower. The pollen sticks to their wee heads and legs and things. They fly home and work it into honey. Ingested raw (that’s always the kind of honey you want to buy: RAW), these bits of pollen and bee help your body build up resistance to the inflamed tubing some people call “Fall.”
I learned about all this while writing this: http://amzn.to/1t0kh3X It pretty much made the whole thing worth it because I eat raw honey now. I don’t lose 3 months a year to a horrific “cold” known as seasonal allergies.
RAW HONEY, dummy. Einstein KNEW.
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Fall is an interesting time to lose weight. I say switch one meal out for a all-liquid meal – find an example in here http://amzn.to/1upNJpC You may get hungry before the next meal. Who cares. Have another one of these. http://amzn.to/1upNJpC The nutrition is so big, you’ll feel full. Drink a lot of water. That’s what you’re made of, mostly. So you need a lot of it and it to keeps you from feeling hungry.
Fall also makes me think of spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg and pumpkin. Cinnamon and apples. Turns out that a teaspoon and a half actually slows the rate your stomach digests food, making you feel full longer. Use it. Scientists are to find the next wave of treatments for the chronically obese, a huge problem in American. (And yes, I saw that with a straight face.)
Fall Cinnamon Banana Green Smoothie
To make this really sing, all the ingredients should begin cold and the ice omitted. However, many use ice.
1/2 banana, chunked
1/4 avocado, peeled, pitted and sliced
Unsweetened Almond Milk to taste
2 – 3 teaspoons cinnamon
1 cup young spinach leaves
2 tablespoons ground flax
Ice to taste
Whirl the banana and avocado with a little almond milk. Add the cinnamon, spinach and flax. Process, dropping ice through the top with the motor running.
Here goes the idiotic “publishing thing” again. A marketing demographic – in this case, young people from the ages of 18 – 22 – is being hijacked as a “genre” for fiction. They call it “new Adult.” If that doesn’t make you, presumably an adult, run and woof into a trash can, I don’t know what will.
Publisher’s Weekly even had a podcast, or something. Young editors, not conversant in how the internet works or in fact their own competition – crowed about this new genre that would step in where chick lit failed.
Here are the words I have for “new Adult” aficionados and the editors and writers who fall for this malarky. You have some shoes to fill:
1. Jane Austen
2. Mark Twain (remember Huck Finn? You read it? In school, maybe?)
3. F Scott Fitzgerald (lyrics by Jay-Z)
4. Charlotte Bronte
5. William Faulkner (Quentin wasn’t very old, kids)
6. Dostoyevsky (You best get off that toilet and write, Lena!)
7. Carson McCullers
“New adult” is a selling term that I should never have heard of. It’s a term that tells you what website to promote a book on.
Do NOT turn your talented authors into writers churning out text for a marketing term. You put them in a ghetto where those who define themselves as “adult” will never find them. For shame.
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Every Friday from 12 noon – 1pm live chat Friday, September 26 DISCOVERABILITY is the topic.
I don’t mean to boast; but I finally figured how not to be fat. I eat the food I didn’t want to eat in one form ( a vegetable, a fruit ) in a form I do love: a drink that resembles a milkshake.
One green smoothie (don’t use processed sugar – use raw honey for the active bee particles) ~ will provide an infusion of nutrition into your body and keep your blood level stable. You won’t have a craving or want to binge. Try to eat as healthy as you can and add a smoothie when you are hungry.
Smoothies, meals, smoothies, meals. It works.
I learned it all writing a cookbook. It was Paleo smoothies. Then I wrote this http://amzn.to/1mrjnAp because I’m a cook and wanted to add teas and tisanes and cook’s tricks. In the process, the weight melted away without my paying attention. My skin glowed. It was unconscious and fun.
In between meals or green smoothies, drink lots of water. Pure clean water. That’s what your body really wants anyway. It can just get boring once in awhile. Use the purest water you get get. Make your ice cubes out of the same clean water.
Here are some ideas for that water:
1. Add slices of cucumber and let the water sit at room temperature for at least an hour. (You want a green whisper of cucumber flavor in the water.) Add ice and serve.
2. Add thin slices of lemon or lime or oranges or any combination therein.
3. Make a tisane by pouring almost boiling water of an herb of flower such as lavender or chamomile. Serve warm or over ice.
4 Lemon and raw honey water: Juice of 2 lemons anad 1 teaspoon raw honey (Lemon dulls the appetite and raw honey is the perfect sweetness.)
%. Teas, the darker or the greener the better. Cool. Hot. Lots of tea.