It all started with an innocent little trip to the Redmond Half Price Books. We weren’t even intending to go there, and were just dropping by briefly during a trip to the French Bakery to pick up a baguette and to World Market to pick up elderflower soda.
I found two fantastic Phaidon food books – a recipes from Noma cookbook by Rene Redzepi
– part of a set of 3, but the most important part
$45.58 for the whole set on amzn.
and a Ferran Adria
that was completely in Italian but with very instructive pictures. They were both $24.95, so I decided to only pick one, and was all set to go with the Ferran Adria, having more normal recipes using everyday ingredients that made easy meals. Z managed to convince me to go with the Noma one, which had much flashier pictures and amazing plating, but recipes that I would likely never make, rendering it a mere coffee table book. But it’s so beautiful inside! It’s good for plating ideas I guess!
Even if all the ingredients are impossible to find.
I also found yet another Singapore/Malaysian cookbook to add to my growing stash – I’ve already got two Meat Men cookbooks, Christopher Tan’s Singapore Cooking by Tuttle, and Christina Arokiasamy’s The Malaysian Kitchen. This one seemed interesting because it had a lot more “street” recipes and not just the famous ones.
Case in point:
This person did pretty good research despite having no affiliation with Singapore. It one was $10 in HPB and basically brand new. ($15 on amzn)
Anyway they did some advertising for their warehouse sale, which made us head down to the HPB warehouse in Greenwood – they were having a fill a bag for $20 sale. The books there were way less interesting than what is in the eastside stores, definitely no Phaidon or even the likes of it, things were organized very broadly by genre and not by specifics, so we couldn’t find anything really amazing. I looked through their entire fiction section and did not see a single Persephone book. We did however decide to fill a bag, largely with comics :P
$10.95 on amzn
$12.95 on amzn
$10.95 on amzn
$16.95 on amzn
$8.64 on amzn
$10.95 on amzn
I’ve had a soft spot for Dilbert and Foxtrot from my adolescence
$17.95 on amzn
$10.66 on amzn.
My New Yorker addiction is more recent
We also put in a bunch of CDs but this is the only one we kept – Ryoji Ikeda’s Supercodex ($19.98 on Amzn) – the jacket is so weird and funny and each track sounds like something that would be playing in a film installation in a museum.
Some random fiction:
$14.58 on amzn
$9.56 on amzn
$21.95 on amzn
$11.75 on amzn. zomg the amzn picture is so bad.
A cute kid’s book with great illustrations that I might braille one day – $11.95 on amzn
And this huge photobook of Maui to scout for photo locations on our upcoming trip. The photo quality is not that great (compared to most modern photo books), I may decide to not keep it, but for now it’s a decent guide – $22.83 on amzn.
Total: $212.60 (amzn). Not bad for a $20 haul! And everything was basically new. Unfortunately at the warehouse sale we picked up two more HPB coupons, one for 50% off everything in their Olympia branch. Z and I have never been to Olympia (only passing through on the way up and down from Portland) and we had an insane number of fuel points so decided to make a trip south. I drove the 1.5 hours there and Z took care of the journey back. I wasn’t expecting too much since it was a HPB outlet, not a regular HPB, but we ended up getting a bunch of stuff!
McSweeney’s vol. 15 – $1.50 (HPB)/$14.82 (amzn) – some water damage on the fabric on the top part of the cover
McSweeney’s vol. 20 – $1.50 (HPB)/$4.95 (amzn)
McSweeney’s covers are so delicious. Vol. 20 is completely embossed!
To add to my almost complete Alan Bennett collection – although this is a volume I might actually already have, but bought so long ago in Singapore to not remember :P. I wasn’t expecting to see any British literature here. 25c (HPB)/$9.97 (amzn)
50c (HPB)/$11.95 (amzn)
50c (HPB)/$13.50 (amzn)
More books to prep for our trip to Maui. This is the first time we have ever purchased this much literature in advance of a trip. I feel like I may return/discard them after the trip, but I guess the pocket guide will make for easier ID-ing if we see anything strange there. If I find the birding book truly useful/instructive then I will probably repaper the awful cover. I recently papered over our guide to birds in Seattle with some navy seikaiha paper from a random nautical stack from Michael’s and it looks 100x better. The Hawaiian haikus are rather strangely tropical compared to regular japanese haiku but the book is filled with cute little woodblock prints similar to that on the cover that I may want to carve in rubber.
The amazing Japanese haul
A Taschen icons book! I love their icons series and have ogled them in Kinokuniya since young!
$1 (HPB)/$4 (amzn)
A strange episodic book I picked up from the fiction section and wanted to put back but Z wanted in the end.
$1.50 (HPB)/$15.87 (amzn)
The arts were – the art of tea ceremony, ikebana, kabuki, and calligraphy/brush painting. The only one we’re not interested in is the kabuki section.
$1.50 (HPB)/$5.99 (amzn). Not one of those questions that inevitably pops into my mind :P
A really old book on Chinese brush painting – In the way of the Master, published by the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston.
$1 (HPB)/$10.94 (amzn)
$1.50 (HPB)/$30 (amzn)
Cute pocket FLW book that had much better pictures than what we saw in the various FLR houses’ gift shops. It’s a really tiny volume though.
$1 (HPB)/$8.51 (amzn)
50c (HPB)/$14.75 (amzn) – first saw in an airport drugstore. I have all his other fiction.
$1 (HPB)/$13.45 (amzn)
$1 (HPB)/$9.99 (amzn)
$1.50 (HPB)/$14.53 (amzn) – another relic from my youth. The entire thing is handwritten and drawn :o This one is in preparation for our Yosemite road trip in October.
$1.50 (HPB)/$11.96 (amzn)
$1.50 (HPB)/$8.27 (amzn)
$1.50 (HPB)/$12.99 (amzn)
Cute Japanese accordion notebook that’s printed on the inside pages as well
Labels that I had actually bought on Amzn before for $16.95! $1.50 (HPB)
Total: $26.25 (HPB)/$233.39 (amzn)
Worth the trip down I guess! Olympia also has a lot of big stores like Jo Anns/Michael’s/T.J. Maxx/Target etc. that somehow you can’t find very near to Seattle. Our nearest Michael’s is 25 minutes away or something, as are all other stores that require a large amount of space. Or maybe we just live in the middle of nowhere :P We also finally tried a Buffalo Wild Wings for the first time, meh, can’t say it was particularly impressive. Duffy’s in Buffalo is so much better. The BWW fries are really intriguing though – they are presalted all the way through, but also cut directly from the potato (all the skin was showing) so we had a long discussion on how they could have salted the potato so that the salt permeated the entire thing before cutting. My conclusion was a wet brine, especially since potatoes contain a lot of water it would be easy to replace their water content with salt water. The texture also ended up being a lot better than Mcdonald’s fries I think because of the brine – they didn’t get stale as quickly and even the stale fries were still edible, not hard and card boardy. We spend a lot of time thinking about food :P