Author Archives: Helen

Action Pizza!

I went to Philadelphia last week and ate at approximately forty-seven restaurants in two days. (I exaggerate, but only a little.) One of the best moments was the Tartufo pizza at Pizzeria Stella: truffles! Egg yolk! And the adorable hipster waiter broke the yolk and spread it around for us, so mais oui I turned it into a gif:

Pig: A Restaurant

“The restaurant world is already so full of absurdity and self-parody that you wouldn’t think a comedy show about it could improve on reality. But oh my god, Pig: A Restaurant kills it. The sexually voracious be-hatted critic, the precisely-calculated bad-boy chef, the vacuously hostessing model-slash, the cooking show contestant nearing meat psychosis – everything about it is totally, completely based in reality, and that’s what makes it so ridiculously, spectacularly amazing.”

My dear friend Leila Cohan-Miccio wrote a one-woman comedy show called Pig: A Restaurant. No one paid me to say the above quote, it is just that good. You should go see it: make a reservation for your (five dollar!) ticket here »

This Week’s Theme

Listen. (Literally, har har.) But okay: if you came up to me and you were like Helen, what is the absolute pinnacle of hilarity? Please design any humorous scenario that you can think of and we will make it into a real thing that you can laugh at, there is a non-zero chance that I’d answer “Please make an entire episode of This American Life that’s about Ira Glass’s quest to have sex with Terry Gross.” And lo, the internet giveth:

As a liberal white person who listens to TAL podcasts while driving a Prius from NYC to Boston to visit college friends, this is maybe the greatest thing that could ever come into my life. Thank you, A.V. Club, for finding it for me.

Tiny Confessions

I love these so much. Everything about them. We can all explain our actions by admitting sorrowful truths.

The Creature from the Black Lagoon is available on Etsy. The luchador is only available on

Bringing the Monarchy into the 21st Century

Transvestite model Andrej Peijic was invited to meet the Queen, which is pretty awesome. But my primary takeaway is oh my god, how awesome is the Royal Household’s email domain name? So exceptionally old school.

(Related: does this mean we can retroengineer the personal email addresses of the royal family? I would basically die of doesn’t bounce back.)

It Has Potential

This quote from Ira Glass is one of the all-time best pieces of advice I’ve ever encountered. I have it printed out and tacked to the wall of my cubicle at work.

That said. I don’t want to be a hater, but the arbitrarily deployed 4+ typography styles, force-justified center alignment, and white-on-black text make me think that whoever made the above is still maybe waaaay down at the far end of the taste/talent gap.

Soho Stiletto

Stilettos in Soho by helenlikesyou
Stilettos in Soho, a photo by helenlikesyou on Flickr.

We can go with the stripper heels, or we can go with the skinnies so skinny that when the ankle unzips the gap goes ellipsoid, or we can go with the fact that girlfriend was straight up hobbling, and that that — more than the pants or the shoes — was what brought her to my attention. But whatever we go with, I think it deserves applause.

How I’ll Know I’ve Made It

(For some obnoxious, endlessly shifting definition of “made it.”)

1. I am blurbed, by name, on someone else’s book.


Additional Elsewhereness

It has been quite a week for Helen Having An Online Presence Besides Her Blog And Her Job (see also: here). Today, at the luxury-things-are-awesome website Pursuitist, the lovely and talented Erica Swallow interviewed me about my favorite cookbooks, restaurants, and other food-related matters »

The stuff I say over there about my changing attitude towards cookbooks and about why Momofuku is such an excellent and important contribution to the marketplace is all stuff that I really, really mean. I’m not going to tell you what it is here because honestly, would it kill you to click? Even if you don’t, I’m fairly confident that if we hang out in real life, and you give me a drink or two, and you are like Helen, what could cookbooks be doing better given the ever-shifting print vs. digital landscape? I would essentially reiterate the same ideas.

(Oh and that giant picture of me up at the top of the interview? Jim took it. Isn’t he talented?)

Find Me Elsewhere

Pancakes for dinner

If you’re sitting there being like, Helen, oh my god, I just wish I could read more about you and know more about your opinions about both pancakes and the online narrative of restaurant blogging, today is your lucky day.

With Gabriella Gershenson, I made pancakes and then wrote about them for the genius fashion website Of A Kind »

On The Atlantic Wire, I’m quoted alongside Michael Nagrant in a story about recently-ousted Sun-Times restaurant critic Pat Bruno, and why bloggers will still pay attention to him even though he actively courts their enmity »

(Spoiler: the reason is: because the crotchety-old-man character he plays is entertaining.)