Sunday, May 7, 2017

I Come From A Long Line of Mediocre Cooks

This morning I am thinking about my grandmother who was an indifferent cook, and my mother who was like her in that way, and now me.  So, I come by my aversion honestly.  But, the American Egoist in me wants to constantly improve, do better, is convinced that one day I'll get this cooking thing right.  Or die trying where you'll find me standing at the stove in my apron.  (Heh.)  Yes, the semester is coming to the end and I can imagine a life that's comprised of more than hoovering up black strokes on white paper trying to coerce my 63 year old working memory to hold on to this pleez for a few more weeks.  And so thoughts turn to food and gardening and quilting.

Last Sunday I thought it was Saturday, which is why I posted Saturday Poetry without irony, and without realizing the mistake until I was jumping up and down in my own kitchen arguing with Cuthbert and Kim that "No, it's not Sunday.  It's Saturday and I have another day!!!"  Alas, they were right and I was wrong, and it was good I found out when I did instead of not showering or showing up for work as is my habit on the weekend.

I like food.  I really do.  But I have not yet made an enduring bond between my like and appreciation and the production of such.  I've written before and I'll write again about looking at cookbooks, being inspired, knowing much of what there is to know about the connections between good nutrition and good health.  I'm old enough (and beat up enough) to know that my survival depends on what and how much I consume from here on out.  I am in awe of cooks; I love to watch people being fed well and with love.  I love the sound of infants eating because they eat with their body and soul and they make such wonderful noises as they feed.  I can organize a great dinner party.  I so much want to be one of those people, those let-me-whip-a-little-somthin-somthin-up-for-you-while-we're-waiting people when I grow up and yet.  And yet.  My aversion to cooking is so bad that I'd eat a spoonful of raw ground beef (not even shaped into beef tartare nor adorned with an egg) before I'd boil water for pasta.

Perhaps I should be counter-intuitive about this and take a class, let my competitive nature kick in  and actually cook because I want to be the best in show?  Maybe that would get me to cook.  Don't know; not sure.  Every August when Cuthbert goes home I have to fend for myself, and if ever I cook on a regular basis, it's then.  I'll wait to see if anything changes.  If it doesn't expect a post:  You're Not Going to Eat That, Are You?

School's almost over.  The garden beckons.  Ciao bella.

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Saturday Poetry: Is Your Husband Married?

I'm almost free.  I have one more class and one more final, and time enough to study for it.  This freedom has coincided with the advent of a Spring so long overdue I have a hard time even one day before May Day believing that it won't snow, and that I won't need to rescue my winter coat from the one-of-these-days-I'll-drop-this-stuff-off-at-the-drycleaners bag.  Perhaps this is my personal era of being slow to come around -- slow to realize the season's changed, slow to believe that that asshole is president, slow to ... you get my drift.

Anyway, here's another poem from the unpublished manuscript, Turn Left At The Dead Dog:


There was one man who called her Baby
He said he had been at the Yard since the War
Like all the old guys he was married
And proud of the way he made money
Down on the docks in Red Hook.
All this he told her while eating his lunch.

She’d turned him down three times as he ate lunch
She knows what it means when they call you Baby
They say there are no nice girls in Red Hook
That’s been gospel since before the war.
The only girls left need to make that money
They aren’t even thinking about getting married.

Hello darling, is your husband married?
That’s the first time he asked her to lunch.
Right then he almost offered her money
Just to be his noontime baby.
She was mad enough to go to war
Here in God’s asshole, Red Hook.

Back in the 60’s in Red Hook
When a couple got married
It’s because they believed in making love, not war.
You’d toast over lunch
And wish them a baby
Then slip them some money.

How you get money
Is all that matters in Red Hook.
Get enough so you can pay for the baby.
They say it’s a good thing to get married.
Too bad they only spring for a lunch.
That custom started during the war.

Now, it’s a different kind of war
Otherwise, why would the bait of fast money
Make a girl give it up during lunch?
I know that it’s not just in Red Hook
When girls pretend they are married

You’ll get caught with a baby.

A Member of the Next Generation of Libtards

My beautiful niece, Lilli, is down in DC this weekend marching on behalf of Mother Earth:



I'm so proud of her (and her mother) for standing up with those who believe we have a moral obligation to fellow human beings.  It's that simple.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

What Kind of Mother#)A$(*#?#?!!ckery is This?

To borrow from the inimitable Amy Winehouse.


It's 60 days and counting and I am still in a state of simmering apoplexy.  What kind of nation have we become that this ignorant, lying philistine with his concubine faux-wife represents our collective American selves?  What does that make us?

What kind of Democrats have we become that white liberals believe reading J. D. Vance's Hillbilly Elegy is revelatory?  (Or for that matter that the existence of a Barack Obama was chimerical.)  I and the rest of my siblings grew up among these north-of-the-Mason-Dixon-Line crackers and have listened aplenty to them, and as far as I'm concerned they are my fellow Americans worthy of civility and entitled to their dignity, but I sure don't owe them any apologies.  Now solid research shows that working class white folks are dying of despair and I'm supposed to have enough magnimony left in me to care?

It's always been abundantly clear to me that the USA cuts way too much slack (an informal way of saying "privilege," which has now become too weaponized a word) to white people.  Period.  That only when a phenomena significantly harms white people is it recognized as mass suffering as opposed to moral defect or criminality. (1980's crack epidemic vs. 2010's opioid epidemic, anyone?)  But frankly, judging from some of Congress' rationale for gutting the ACA I'm not sure the "significant harm to white people" bar is holding either.

And yes, when I'm not as inflamed as I am in the Age of Trump, I am well aware that class and other variables determine collective and individual fates.  But, I am tired and the harm in communities of color (and yes, it's another fashionably weaponized word, but sometimes you need shorthand) continues as a crisis and I am nowhere near the mediation stage.