For the past month and a half, I went through a phase of chasing nostalgia. I live streamed a lot on Twitch during my holiday break between Christmas and New Year’s Day, just like how I used to stream a lot during my winter breaks from undergraduate university over a decade ago. I also wanted to try daily blogging again, just like how I used to daily blog in 2011.
Needless to say, I failed. I made it January 1-9 of daily blogging before I realized it was unsustainable. My minimum acceptable quality bar of a blog post has increased substantially up to the point where it usually takes me an average of an hour or more to finish writing one… if I even have anything to write about to begin with. Over ten years go, this wasn’t the case—on some days, I would just publish a single random photograph and call it a day.
Earlier in the month, I was collecting sets of pictures that I thought I would turn into individual blog posts, but didn’t because the size of each set wasn’t satisfactory. I don’t have much from the final couple weeks of January because I let myself indulge in something personal I wanted to do that took up basically the entirety of all my free time and even some sleep time, but I think I still have enough to warrant a small photo dump from this month.
Here’s a small set of photos from a quick all-you-can-eat lunch from Tomomi Sushi in Alhambra, California. To open, I got tuna, salmon, yellowtail, albacore, and tilapia sashimi.
Next was a plate of baked green mussels.
My third dish was tako wasabi, which is raw octopus.
For my assortment of nigiri, I got salmon, yellowtail, Spanish mackerel, albacore, escolar, and squid.
My final dish was ika sansai, which is squid salad.
As many people already know by now, I used to live on the Las Vegas Strip in a residential high-rise condominium building. It obviously has its perks, like having great amenities and security, and being central to the Las Vegas Valley so I can pretty much get anywhere within 20 minutes, but another major thing I liked was the view.
One of my biggest regrets from the past year is moving out into the suburbs under the false assumption that I would appreciate the more peaceful lifestyle after having road tripped for two years non-stop while living out of hotel rooms. The first month was pleasant, but after that, it got boring—it was too quiet out near Summerlin South, and more than anything, I missed waking up to a stunning view and bright sunlight.
While in Los Angeles County in January, I visited a friend who has a nice view from her home, even though she doesn’t live in a high-rise. It’s definitely not the same as a high-rise view, but it reminded me of when our Tempo team house was up near the Hollywood Hills, and it gave me a little bit of nostalgia from my time living on the Strip.
Our very first attempt was Pan Am, which is apparently built around Pan American Airways, a now-defunct airline. We spent almost two hours unpackaging the game and learning how to play, actually played the game for around 20 minutes, and then proceeded to get distracted and quit before ever finishing a single round because it was almost 3 AM and I wanted to go to sleep.
Next was Monopoly. This went a lot better than Pan Am, though I accidentally made a catastrophically critical error which allowed Billie Rae to snowball out of control and make it absolutely hopeless for anyone else to have a chance at winning. Luckily, in exchange for my inadvertent generosity towards her cause, Billie Rae gave me a few breaks when I landed on her spots, which at least let me beat Doug and not get last place.
I also landed on the Free Parking space. I am going to save this photograph as evidence and use it the next time I go to the Monterey Bay Aquarium (which is what this version of Monopoly was themed after) so I can get free parking there.
I’m a fan of going to restaurants by myself with my laptop so I can enjoy a nice meal alone while getting some work done and not feeling pressured to uphold a conversation. However, I do still occasionally like dining out with friends, which I did earlier this month at No.1 Kazoku Japanese Yakitori and Sushi Bar in San Gabriel, California.
Our opening dish was tuna belly nigiri. The cuts of fish were extremely high quality and were overwhelmingly rich in flavor.
Next were chicken skin and beef tongue skewers. I found these to be pretty underwhelming—the chicken skin just tasted intensely strongly of gamey chicken flavor, and the beef tongue was overcooked and lacked the tenderness that you normally expect from tongue. However, my friend absolutely loved these, so much so that she texted me in the middle of the night, hours after dinner, telling me that she was still thinking about the chicken skin skewer.
Next up was tuna carpaccio. This wasn’t bad, but was vastly overshadowed by the tuna belly nigiri from earlier.
Finally, the closing dish of our dinner was a chirashi bowl. It’s very rare that chirashi bowls come with sea urchin, and I’m glad that this one did, considering that sea urchin is my favorite sushi. However, it also came with little chunks of a strange cold cooked fish, and I never really found out what it was.