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For all the folks out there stuck in the real world of cubicles and water coolers, Pim Techamuanvivit lives in a dream world where food reigns. "Food has always been my thing," says Pim, who quit her research job at Cisco Systems five years ago when the blog she had started in 2001 to keep in touch with her friends and family around the world opened up opportunities in the culinary world. Occasionally she would put up recipes or write about restaurants she visited and meals she ate. "I noticed that the more I wrote about food, the more readers came to my blog," she explains. "Then it became this odd thing where I was like, 'Who are you people? Why are you reading my blog?' I was mildly freaked out by that."

The popularity of her blog, Chez Pim, has led her to a book deal and articles in national newspapers and culinary magazines. This isn't to say she's any Ruth Reichl or Frank Bruni. "It's not a critique. I tell stories about my experience. I might make some valued judgment about whether it's good or not, but it's coming from my own perspective. I think it's all subjective anyways."

Right now she's looking forward to Jazz Fest in New Orleans, both for the music and, of course, the food. "They say in New Orleans, 'If you're still dancing, you haven't eaten enough,'" she laughs. So she'll be eating, and we'll be reading.