Each week, Journal Star staffers will share what we’re listening to, reading, eating, watching, wearing or otherwise generally loving right now. These are real, actual ravings, not paid content.
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Going walletless. Thanks to a few too many of those chain restaurant loyalty cards, a Target gift card that still contains at least 60 cents on it, a credit card, an emergency credit card for when I max out the aforementioned credit card, a decoy credit card in the event of an armed robbery and never enough O’Rourke’s pitcher cards, I was veering too close to Costanza wallet country. But after every wallet purge, the mass of coffee receipts returns with more venom (and bagel purchases). Not this time. I purchased a Speck case (about $25 online) for my phone, and it contains a sliver of a pocket that allows for one credit card, one driver’s license, and that’s about it. I’m writing this on Day One of the quest to quit my wallet. Phantom pains persist. The panicky scramble for my missing billfold count is at two. But posture is markedly improved.
-- Cory Matteson
Watermelon (of the most unusual kind). After an ode to the watermelon column, I, too, pined for the pink flesh of summer’s best fruit. The next day, I was shopping at Hy-Vee and found a yellow-fleshed watermelon that I’ve never seen before. So I got it. It tastes great, similar to your standard pink watermelon, but comes with a certain amount of cognitive dissonance.
-- Jordan Pascale
Ojo Caliente Mineral Springs. About an hour north of Santa Fe, this welcoming spa offers geothermal mineral waters for soaking and relaxation. The hot pools of iron, soda and arsenic are said to relieve irritations of the immune and digestive systems plus aid in arthritis relief. The mud pool -- you don't actually immerse yourself -- offers goo to slather from head to toe before you retire to lounge chairs to bake dry with a tingling, skin-tightening sensation. The $18 weekday admission includes use of sauna and steam baths as well. And a whisper-only policy creates a heavenly ambience.
-- Patty Beutler
Oriole Park at Camden Yards. I recently returned to Lincoln from a three-day series at what has become my favorite park in the Majors, which is celebrating its 20th season. From the bronze markers that show where each feared slugger (and Kevin Reimer!) drilled home runs that reached Eutaw Street, to the Natty Boh on tap, there’s plenty to keep you entertained if the game goes in the tank. And, oh, the concessions. As far as I’m aware, it is the only MLB ballpark that offers a hot dog adorned with macaroni and cheese and crab. Exquisite. The cherry on top of the trip: Saturday’s gate giveaway of a replica of the newly unveiled statue of Jim Palmer, whose full-extension leg kick makes for a perfect key holder.
-- Cory Matteson