Wasabi Peas

I love these bright and crunchy little marbles of sweet and spicy. These are so addictive; I eat them like popcorn.

Our chain lock
I’m not really one for locking the front door. Actually, I’m not really one for locking anything. I lose every key I have and I’m the type of woman who tapes my computer password to my monitor. When I first got email I even had a friend check it for me so that I wouldn’t have to deal with the “hassle” of logging in.

The new 10 Things is up

While I value my emotional privacy, I’m not one for locking people out of (or, for that matter, into) my world. As a matter of fact if a friend walked through my front door right now, without knocking, I’d be thrilled and I’d make them some tea (only because I’m out of vodka; if I had vodka they’d get that).

Liam looks at locks differently. Without going into too much detail, and deconstructing his psyche, it would suffice to say that my pet name for him isn’t “Poopsie” or “Muffin.” It’s “Captain Safety.” Before Liam and I lived together he never used this chain but after I moved in he was sure to chain our front door every night; sometimes he’ll even get out of bed to chain it if he forgot.

I don’t love this lock for what it keeps out or keeps in. I love it because, even though Liam could totally take down a Maine Black Bear if he wanted to, it’s his way of keeping all he holds dear safe from harm. It’s a sweet and precious thing.


Something about that galloping strum of a banjo just makes everything sound better to my… Italian-American, life-long New Englander ears. Oh, whatever. Bring on the Appalachia, I say.


There is something so special about reading a book at the very spot it was written. This book was written over 120 years ago by Mason Walton, a naturalist who lived in Ravenswood Park in Gloucester, Mass. for 33 years. Liam gave this to me for Valentine’s Day this year and, as an added bonus, presented it to me as we ate lunch on the rock placed where Walton’s cabin once stood.

My big blue glasses
Steph has these, too.

We both bought them way back when we worked together at the Glass Sailboat, the tiny hippie café/homegoods store where we met. These heavy, blue, Mexican glass glasses were a favorite of the store’s employees and I think most have at least one in their permanent collection. Not only do I love the deep blue color and the solid feel of the heavy glass, I love remembering that they came from a pretty wonderful time in my life.

I miss that little café: it was the hub of Gloucester’s creative community and it connected me with some of the most favorite people in my life, Stephanie and Amy, as well as a handful of others that aren’t familiar to the 10 Things group.

The weight of these glasses are filled with memories of friends and I smile every time I sip from them.

Lake Alaska
Have you ever heard a song so perfect and so beautiful it completely changed the way you listened to music?

“Lake Alaska, 4 a.m.,” a song by Liam’s good friend Andy Stochansky, is a song so beautiful it prompted Liam and I to coin a term just to describe it: Songs to Stare at the Ceiling To. It’s the type of song that incapacitates you. Its perfection pushes the air out of your lungs and its beauty leaves you with nothing left to do but lay on your back, stare at the ceiling, and let the splendor wash over you.

While other songs have since been given the “Stare at the Ceiling To” label, none have quite reached the same level. This is a song so gorgeous it almost drowns you in its lush melodies and hypnotic rhythms that pound like a doleful heartbeat (no one on the planet writes a rhythm like Andy).

So, readers, here for you is our very first download and your very first Song to Stare at the Ceiling To. This isn’t a song to multi-task to; I suggest that when you download this you clear off your bed, take in a deep breath and let your ears, mind and heart know they’ll never be the same. If you find yourself weeping, don’t say I didn’t warn you.

I heard about the luxury of cashmere but until I found this markdown it didn’t seem worth the dime or the hassle. I’m ashamed that I’ve gone so long without indulging in at least one piece of this incredible fabric.

Remember when you were little and you had that super-soft corner of your favorite blanket that, just by slipping it between your thumb and forefinger, would instantly soothe you, keeping all the trauma of the world at bay? That’s this sweater.

Thankfully, I am able to wear it during present-day traumatic experiences, like 8 a.m., Monday-morning editorial meetings.


The beach my brother and I grew up going to is bordered by woods; as kids we used to bushwack into the thicket to pick these when we wanted a sweet snack. Childhood doesn’t get much more perfect than that.

Blackberries mean summer to me, and you know how I love summer.

3 p.m. Cup O’ Joe

It’s my little late-day treat. Extra strong, with cream and sugar, it’s more of a buzz-shake than your typical coffee and it’s the only thing that gets me past my 3 p.m. hump. Sometimes, when I’m feeling spent, by say 2 p.m., I’ll make a little promise to myself that if I can hold off until 3 o’clock I’ll allow myself a cookie.

My co-worker Adam reads this, so I’d be remiss if I didn’t add that he typically brews a whole late-day pot for everyone in our company, and does a helluva good job at it too.

48 Hour Film Project

It’s fast. It’s furious. It’s torturous. It’s a fight against time, circumstance and the human body’s basic need for sleep, but for some reason we keep doing it.

This was our second year participating in the 48 Hour Film Project. We didn’t win this year — we didn’t even make it in on time — but Team Bait & Tackle did get to spend 48 hours straight working, collaborating and brainstorming with a group of friends that we love and admire.

Sleep is for sissies; for such a fun project we can’t wait to be deprived of it again. Here is a link to the end result of a sleep-deprived weekend. It’s called Eliot in Orbit.

Other entries by Janelle
Janelle’s 10 Things: April 12
Janelle’s 10 Things: March 15
Janelle’s 10 Things: November 13