List Lust and Settling for Pho

list of lists
Back in January, I made a list of restaurants I’d like to try. I had this insane idea that I’d revisit the list from time to time to make appropriate changes as dictated by the ever-microdermabrazing complexion that is LA LA Land’s restaurant scene, as well as my own silly experiences. Ha! I didn’t even look at the list until today, and realized that I needed to make quite a few additions, deletions, and modifications. Here it is again, just to serve as a painful reminder to myself that until I actually land a job, I am resigned to listful, lustful longing while eating halfway decent tofu pho.

Since I have been out of the dining loop for a few weeks, please feel free to make recommendations, comment about places you’ve tried, or suggest any restaurants for which I should just go ahead and sell my soul so I can go now.

This list resides permanently in the sidebar over there on the left <– as “Sarah’s To Dine List.”

From the Archive:
Back when I was in school, semi-normal people recounted the mundane details of their daily lives or poured out their heart’s emotions and feelings by writing a simple expository letter every night to some invisible friend named “Diary.” Presumably, “Diary” did not mind at all reading about every single inconsequential, boring detail of your pathetically uneventful life or yet again, *rolleyes* about how that fu–king a$$wipe ex-boyfriend totally wronged you into never trusting men or yourself again, just-finally-get-over-it-it’s-been-six-years, okay? (Huh? Blog, what?) That’s semi-normal people who write to their invisible “Diary” friends. Normal people, of course, pay $175 an hour for a live friend named “Therapist.”

I, on the other hand, never had a diary. The therapist is another story, but don’t worry, I’m totally over that lying, cheating son-of-a…Instead, I had a book of lists. I had one of those annoyingly adorable notebooks from Artbox or some other Korean stationery/gift store that had a generic pudgy cute cartoon animal character that looked like Hello Kitty but wasn’t Hello Kitty, and what sounded like an English translation of a Korean haiku that made no sense whatsoever: “flower love make you pretty in my heart.” This notebook, with the pages in each section a different shade of the pastel rainbow from pink to peach to lavender, was my book of lists. On each new page, I would select some topic that captured my fancy and made an associated list. I even wrote the lists in full-blown technicolor with my eek!girlie! gel pens. Most of the time, it was some form of a To-do List or a ridiculous Top 10 Favorites list. Top 10 Songs I Love This Week. Top 10 Places I’d Go for My Honeymoon – was I stupid? Top 10 Characteristics in a Guy – omy, I was stupid! And yes, there were even many lists that were related to food. Top 10 Favorite Snacks. Top 10 Favorite Baked Potato Toppings. If ever I got really crazy, it would be a mad combination like Top 10 Favorite Things to Do with a Baked Potato. Whoa. I was so weird.

I was a weird, freaky freak about lists.

Was? I still am.

It doesn’t come out much on the final output to The Delicious Life, but I have an Excel workbook with more than a dozen worksheets filled with lists. Some of the lists are stand-alone, like an alphabetical list of every vegetable I can think of and a column to check off whether I have eaten it or not. Some of the lists cross-reference lists on other worksheets. Some of the lists are just so embarassingly nerdy to be lists that I will never disclose them. Didn’t I just mention the Lifetime Vegetable List? Crap.

One of the lists that I used to have in that pastel prissy pink princess book was a list of restaurants I wanted to try. The exact contents of that particular list, of course, have long since been outdated, but I still maintain a list of restaurants that I want to try. It’s my To-Dine List. Since one of my New Year’s resolutions was to make a few dents in my To-Dine List, putting the list here on The Delicious Life is a way to remind myself.

This is actually just a subset of highlights from the complete list (which is much longer and extends far beyond LA), and to be quite honest, I have no idea how some of the naughty restaurants even found their ways on to my list. I mean, come on, Bella is Geisha House’s Italian step-sister. But they are there, so I will try them, and I suppose come back here every once in a while to update the list with dates (mm/dd/yy, not guys’ names – LOL!). It would be pretty ambitious and very expensive to try all of these this year, but…who knows? It’s only January, and yes, I have sent my resumé out a couple of times, too.

Lists. I love lists. See? I’ve never been into writing long expository pieces every day about myself and my experiences in a stupid diary. ;)

** a year ago today, i balked at conde nasty’s 3 hottest tables in la and dduk bokki is not a rice cake, dammit! **

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  • Anonymous

    IIRC, Lincoln Steakhouse has closed down.

  • KT

    Soulmate! I’m a total list geek too. I have “To Dine” lists for multiple cities, with corresponding “To Drink” bar lists on a separate worksheet.

    I have lists for just about everything I own or want to buy, to-do lists, random lists that I will never need or use but think I will, like maybe if I win the lottery.

    The nerdiest I think, is a list of work-acceptable outfits to wear for when it’s too hard to think of what to wear in the morning. It’s weird, I know, but sometimes I really need this. So don’t feel too bad, there are even geekier people out here. Like me.

    PS You need to eat at Angeli right away. It’s like my crack. And they have the best waiter. If you ever are desperate for company I will totally take you. It’s that good–OMG the gnocchi.

  • Neil

    You have a lot of eating to catch up on.

  • Anonymous

    have you heard of R23? i heard it’s very good sushi. i think you go to the OC once in a while, my bf lives there and we just went to hole-in the wall sushi wasabi and had some pretty good sushi omakase style at the sushi bar. but chowhound reviews said that r23 in LA was better…
    and wait, you’ve done father’s office, right?

  • Alice Q. Foodie

    This is so funny – I just did the exact same thing on my blog – but I don’t have as many choices to make as you do! So many places, so little time!

  • Anonymous

    Oh, why would you put places like Bella and The Social on your list? Makes you look like you wanna be a scenester. Tsk Tsk.

  • sarah

    anonymous #1: you are right! i forgot to make that mod — it is now holly’s west…which i saw the other day when i went to casa escobar. :)

    kt: you out-listgeek me? you do. wow, we must meet and compare spreadsheets. haha! and i will try angeli caffe soon — are you talking about the ricotta gnocchi? yeah, i tried those at an event and loved them.

    neil: well? so, when are you, sophia and i going to knock one of these off my list in a threesome?!

    anonymous #2: i think i am still trying to get over the trauma of having to go downtown every day during jury duty. but once i’m over that, i will have to try r23, which i hear about all the time.

    and yes, i have most certainly done father’s office, though i didn’t love it as much as other people do.

    alice q: another listgeek. i love it.

    anonymous #3: ah, but maybe i AM a scenester. *raises eyebrows* ok, i’m not. bella has a personal tie (you don’t wanna know), and the social – well i just want to see what makes chodorow such a damn don juan of restaurants.

  • Rachael

    You MUST try Absolutly Pho-bulous if you want good tofu pho!

  • KT

    Actually, at Angeli they have revolving gnocchi specials. You never know what it’s going to be until you get there. So it’s a surprise! Like Christmas!

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