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Expectations

“I’m headed down to South America for a couple of months, I think I’ll get up here in the Fall sometime.” It’s October now. I finally moved into a studio in a busy neighborhood of Buenos Aires. The rumble of the city never stops; construction, buses, honking cars, combusted air, the rambunctious children. In the beginning I could barely stand it. Some would even go as far as calling this place the NYC of Latin America: a melting pot of cultures, a mecca of artistic activity, liberal lifestyles, the metropolis in a 1000 miles. I have a corporate job I’d been running away from, and it’s helping me pay the rent, live my life, and limits the time I can...

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Parrilla on Sunday, Part II

Dry Rub is very common in American BBQ. It adds much flavor that slowly seeps into the meat in the smoking process that can take 12+ hours of patient cooking, but we don’t use that. The truth is that you only need one condiment, the oldest and purest of them all: salt. Preferably thick. Maybe a little pepper or Worcestershire for marinade, and some people like to get creative with it to add different juices. The important thing is to keep the picanha as cold as possible before you put it in a steady hot wood coal fire, after the initial flames have receded. You cover both sides with salt, sear the lean side to seal the juices, and once...

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Parrilla on Sunday, Part I

Sunday is one of the more contradictory days of the week. A day some use for rest and renewing their moral and physiological energy supply, others to max out their weekend leisure time. Christianity prescribes mass every Sunday for a well-lived life, as mandated by their God in Genesis. Growing up in Venezuela, we had our own way of spending this most excellent day of the week. The kids get thrown in a TV room where they wrestle control over the TV remote or the video game controllers. Back in my day, Mario Party was the game all the kids would play, and being the youngest of 5 cousins usually meant I’d have to wait till the next game to...

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The Call to Nature

Around 0035 of last Saturday the silver Ram pulled in outside of my house. I walked out with my backpack, guitar, hammock and cooler full of drinks and food, set them in the truck bed and we hit the road, headed south on I-35, to merge into 290, to eventually get on the No-Country-for-Old-Men famous I-10. It was dark and the night was lukewarm, and as we covered ground I started feeling the relief of disconnection. Music blasting in the pristine sound system of the truck, I dozed on and off, and before long, the west Texas sprawl began to glow with the first rays of sunlight. As we stopped in the last gas station before the desert, construction workers...

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Why We Do What We Do.

It's 0218 on an ex-Saturday Night, and I’m supposed to meet my dad at 9am for a morning walk. He’s come from home, flew all day to come see me, and shared an afternoon by the grill. “Gas?” “Yes, Bill gave me his old charcoal one when I moved into the house.” Gabe and Toni, the young Irish-Colombo American couple, told us of their lives and Bill and Pops discussed religion. Great ending to the allotted R&R of the weekend. Today is a day of revision and rehearsal.  Since the moment I figured I wasn’t going back home anytime soon I started fiddling with ideas of what life I could make for myself. Stopped playing guitar, thought of corporate environments...

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