Oh I totally didn’t do a 2006 best-of list! I like lists. This is for my own posterity, not because I think anyone cares about my bloggerly critical greatness. Best album: I got really lax with the new music this year, so my opinion doesn’t count for much, but The Body, The Blood, The Machine by The Thermals is my favourite new album in like, forever

Best Books I read (for fun): Oh, this is so hard! Turn, Magic Wheel by Dawn Powell, Heat by Bill, Catch-22 by Joseph Heller, and Atonement by Ian MacEwan all made huge impressions; I also really liked White Teeth, in the compulsive-reading way, but it didn’t blow my mind

Best movies: Again, there’s lots of stuff I haven’t seen that counts for 2006. Stranger Than Fiction, Little Miss Sunshine, and Tristram Shandy would almost definitely be on the list, as would Brick, The Devil and Daniel Johnston, and maybe Shortbus but I still have high hopes for Children of Men

Best TV: Easy. Veronica Mars, Battlestar Galactica, Project Runway, the end of Arrested Development, The Office. No special order.

I don’t really hold with New Year’s Resolutions as an idea, because you know, if you want to do something you will do it, and if you kind of like the idea of doing something, you will resolve to do it on New Year’s Day and then do it really regularly for a couple of months before you slowly peter out and then give up, because it turned out to be hard and/or not that fun.

In our travels this Christmas, Alex and I ate a lot of terrible food. The result is: Alex and I feel kind of terrible now. I’m pretty sure I’ve put on weight and I just generally am revolted by the idea of heavy meals involving meat and cake, which are both normally things that I like very much. Between the insane essay-writing of early December, and the eating orgy of later December, I’ve decided I need a break. I was already planning on trying out one new recipe a week (because of the bounty of cookbooks I received for Christmas), but I have now further decided that for the next little while (by which I mean like, two weeks or something), that new recipe will be meat-free. As will all my eating. I went veggie for a month in second year, and by the end I was desperately craving chicken, but I was living in res and relying on the meal hall’s definition of “meat-free alternatives” for like, half my meals. I already don’t eat much meat, so I am re-trying the experiment now that I cook for myself.

Actually, I am already ahead on my one-recipe-a-week deal: tonight we made Aloo Gobhi from New Indian Home Cooking by Madhu Gadia, which is a low-fat Indian cookbook I picked up at BMV like, years ago. We used purple cauliflower, which was pretty. All the potatoes didn’t quite cook as well as I’d have liked — smaller chunks next time, maybe? — , but the flavour was amazing and it was a really pretty dish. We also made the Lentil Curry from the Vij’s cookbook, which Alex got me. It was pretty much your standard dal, using half split mung dal (the little yellow ones) and half masur dal (the little orange ones), but with a simple onion-tomato masala and some cilantro mixed in at the end. It wound up being delicous, but it took way longer to cook than the recipe indicated, and we wound up having to take off the lid and let the excess water boil off at the end. That happened last time I tried to make lentils, too — maybe I’m not letting it boil hard enough before I let it cook? Anyway, I’ll know to allow longer for it next time. So that’s two recipes! And I’m totally planning minestrone or something for Tuesday.

I also want to start baking more: maybe twice a month? Also, and this depresses me: exercising. I should take up jogging or something: Vancouver’s one advantage is that it’s pretty and usually not deadly cold. Also, it requires virtually no investment, as I own running shoes and a supportive tank top from LuluLemon (SHUT UP IT WAS ON SALE).