Fives is a zine about random shit, but I picked one thing for each of the five senses. Includes my recipe for hummus, my grandma’s CSA, thoughts on Zayn, Australian football, and why sunscreen is important.

5senses.pdf

The sun came up on us faster than I expected. I went for a hike one cloudy morning early this spring and came home with a sunburn.

I’m 33, but I also have persistently acne-prone skin, so I’ve never been a fan of more stuff on my face. During the summer, of course, I usually remember to sunscreen the parts not covered with sleeves and pants. I’m a burner, not a tanner, and I’ve had enough painful days that I should be better at this.

I’m trying to be better at a lot of things these days. I asked a friend for recommendations, and at the drugstore, I found that exact brand on sale: Aveeno Protect + Hydrate SPF 30. It’s lovely and light, not greasy at all. No crazy fragrances–no flowers, no coconut.

I’m liking the feel of it, on my fingers and my face. After a month of daily use, I think I can say it hasn’t disrupted my skin. My skin, which can be so unpredictable that I never know just what sparked a breakout, seems happy with a new addition to the morning routine. Cleanser, toner, treatment, and now sunscreen.

It’s a new habit, and some days I forget. But I’m trying to be better.

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My favourite thing to eat right now is hummus, smeared on toast, topped with bread and butter pickles. I can’t tell if that sounds weird or not. It’s fucking delicious.

Chickpeas are amazing. You can make anything. Buy them in a can, if you like. It’s convenient, and who cares? (Just remember to rinse them before you eat them.) But they’re also cheaper dried and pretty easy to cook. Soak overnight, then simmer about an hour in a pot with some flavour. (I like bay leaves, peppercorns, and garlic.)

To make hummus, add tahini (or peanut butter, whatever you have on hand), more garlic, more pepper, salt, and just enough olive oil to make everything creamy. Mix it in a food processor or use an immersion blender. It keeps in the fridge for a week.

It tastes good with pickles.

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My grandmother is running a CSA out of her backyard, except she doesn’t know it. When I was a kid, we couldn’t play out there. In the winter, it was dangerous; in the spring, a mudhole. Then they cleaned it up, pulled out the dead tree stumps, and my brothers and I lobbied hard to put in a pool.

My grandma got a garden instead.

Every year, she claims she’s doing less. Every year, she fills the fridge, the freezers, and the cupboards with so much produce. We can’t eat it all, even years later.

My most recent delivery was a pot of chives to go with the five basil plants, the parsley, and the bed of lettuce growing on my windowsill. For the fridge, she brought me kale, spinach, and swiss chard, as well as a bag of assorted herbs.

My apartment smells like a spicy green garden, I can’t pick the lettuce fast enough; it just keeps growing back. Chopped basil tastes good on top of everything. Did you know this?

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It’s spring here, which means it’s autumn in Australia, which means football season has begun. I discovered the sport a few years ago, one very late night, because TSN airs games in the dark hours when they finally run out of That’s Hockey reruns. Now I have a team. Now I’m invested. Now I’m waiting every weekend to see if my team’s game made the listings.

They only play once a week, and there are only 18 teams, which means it’s just nine games. Even running three hours, it must be no problem fitting them into the Australian TV schedule. Here in Canada, since we only get two or three every weekend, it’s been weeks since I’ve seen my Fremantle Dockers play. Since the season began back in April, I’ve seen them twice.

Seven games in, and they’re undefeated! Now I’m getting nervous. I never feel good when my team is at the top of the ladder. The next time the Dockers show up on my TV, if they ever do, I’m afraid they’re going to lose.

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I’m still obsessed with One Direction’s last album. I haven’t stopped listening to it. I haven’t really been listening to anything else.

I came into this band just before the last last album, which means we were all still listening to the last last last album. But FOUR is my favourite. The last one.

Being a One Direction fan is the most frustrating thing. Why did they only release two singles? Why did they pick the most banal songs? Why are they still ending their live show with “What makes you beautiful”, now four years old? (OK, they can keep doing that if Liam keeps pulling Harry’s trousers down when he sings the last line.)

Of course, we know now why the promotion of FOUR stalled out after two singles. Back in November, when the album came out, it looked like it might be the start of the long-awaited rebrand of this band of twentysomethings, still marketed to tweens.

Then they lost Zayn. If there was a plan, it was pushed to the side so everyone could deal with that blow. If something is going to change with One Direction, it’ll have to wait for album number five.

For now, I’m still listening to FOUR.

Today I went back to a place I remember as a kid and discovered it’s been abandoned and left to return to the wild.