What is it about piles? I have one for bills and one for clippings people send me, one for books to read, one for recipes to try, one for cookbooks to leaf through, one for New Yorkers, and this one, for mostly cooking or Seattle-related magazines I haven’t gotten to yet. Then there’s the pile of various notebooks, for recipe testing, calendering, writing, planning, and actual note-taking, which are themselves really just huge piles, simmered and reduced into a smaller, more legible format. You might call the piles on the inside of my notebooks lists.

So why does list connote organization while pile implies impending disaster? I’d argue that the latter is just an expanded, more physically impressive version of the former. A grocery list does represent organization, and the pile of groceries that sits on the counter for 20 minutes while I check my email is simply the list’s physical manifestation.

My piles are probably a good representation of what’s going on in my brain, and even though I’m always trying to figure out how to get rid of them, I think deep down I might even love them.

This must be the Way of the Universe: everything is piles, all the atoms and particles and whatevers that make up our physical world. I guess I’ll have to bring that up the next time my physicist husband starts bugging me about the state of our office.

Anyway, I’ve been meaning to point you to a few of the things I’ve written recently, just to add to your piles: check out Seattle Weekly’s dining guide for a slew of informative and often funny capsules on Seattle dining. (It’s organized according to the “22 most statisticially significant human-restaurant interactions,” which makes it quite entertaining.) I also have pieces in the April and May issues of Seattle Homes and Lifestyles. And in a cruel twist of fate, I’ll be part of a feature on KCTS‘s “About the Money” show tonight at 7:30 and I don’t actually have a television to watch it on.

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