Thursday, November 15, 2012


The Moose
Yesterday was a pretty good day for finding out stuff.

Moose has an ear infection. M cleaned out his ear Friday night and we just kept an eye on it. But he's been shaking his head and it didn't seem to be going away. So we went to the trusty Yelp.

Yelp is everything that's great about the Internet. There are a few crowdsourced items on the Web that are not flawless, but about as great a resource as you could hope for. I put in this class Yelp, Wiki and craigslist.

Anyway, once a place has enough Yelp reviews, you get a pretty good idea that it's harder to game those results. So I found a vet in Somerville that had a five-star rating with more than 100 reviews. That was encouraging. Then I went to their Web site and found a note that said they were currently maxed and thus not taking any new patients.

Bummer. But, you never know. So we called and told them our story of being new to Boston, and having a sick pup. As we would find out, they hold open a few spots throughout the week for emergencies. This qualified; we had a 2:15 appointment.

The vet's offices are great, with a nice selection of food and toys and pet stuff, and a great crew. And then there was Dr. Ulrich of Huron Veterinary Hospital. He spent probably 10 minutes going over Moose's health history, and letting everyone get normal. His dogside manner is beyond awesome.

So now Moose and the kids have a new vet. They'll take all of us. M's sense of relief was palpable. Big win for me!


After that, M was back to work and I had some errands to run. I went to the Town Clerk's office, and they also were extremely helpful and nice. More progress.

Last night, we also found a restaurant that's very good: Il Casale. It's a little loud, but beautifully appointed and the staff is perfectly attentive. Rarely did we need for anything that wasn't addressed promptly.

The food was also really good, and available in half-portions. We tried the "sfizi" menu first, which provides small plates to sample. The bruschetta was very good; the calamari was exquisite. Perfectly cooked, not too greasy or gritty. Wonderful.

M had carbonara that was ridiculously great. I had the "broken lasagna" which was very good, with spicy chunks of pepper, spinach, fresh pasta and a light sauce. A little more cheese would have made it perfect. But M offered me a bite of her carbonara and next time I will order a tub of it. Delicious. We capped the meal with a pumpkin cheesecake (the restaurant has its own pastry chef) and it was tasty and creative, with a sweetened, crisped chip of basil that added a curiously unexpected and novel twist. Home Freaking Run.


Also driving around yesterday I tuned into WERS, 88.9. The first four songs captivated me with a blend of old and new. I later found out it was a student station from Emerson College, which made me think of my college DJ days.

We've also found a damned good sushi joint in Belmont called Gen Sushi. The place is tiny... No way could you cram more than 16 people in there at one time. But the sushi is sublime. Really good stuff. They've apparently been open only about nine months. They're going to outgrow that space.

We're still looking for the definitive pizza option after three tries. The first was too bland, the second too heavy, the third better but nothing extraordinary. The search continues. But discovery is fun.

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