Thursday, May 26, 2011

Something different......

Tonight.....I went outside and walked back and forth in front of my house....watching the sky.

There were no clouds.....and the stars were out.

The stars were out!

I wanted to plant a kiss on each and every one of those little lights.

It seems like months since the sky was clear.....and months since my head was free of nagging thoughts......Is it time to check my weather app?? or turn on the TV to check which storms were heading into our many hours did I have before it hit? bad would it be?

Siege after day of wondering when you would need to dive in closet or seek shelter from massive storms....

And the storms have been brutal.....the south is known for throwing lightening and thunder around that could knock a person over.......but these storms have been vicious....holding something raw and dangerous in them.....which made your heart beat faster and the hair stand up on the back of your neck.

Couple this personal experience with stories....our local news stations have inundated us with storm stories....children sucked out of their mothers' arms during a twister.....decapitations.....people left in trees.

I've handled all of them pretty well....except for one story I heard the other day....which keeps tugging on me....the sheer horror and serendipity of the universe in full display.

It's a tornado story from Joplin.....I read about it in one of the national papers....they were reporting on missing missing person is a teenager who just celebrated his graduation across town....while driving back from the event....the twister hit his car....and the boy was sucked out of the sun roof of the car and has not been seen......a young man....sucked out a sun roof....his father in the car but spared.

It is tragic sad unbelievable weird.....and sticky story. It has stuck with me....I catch myself visualizing a young adult.....being pulled up into the sky. In a very weird reminds me of the rapture stories from the previous week....when some people believed The Chosen would be elevated and taken up into the sky....unto God.

I hope this is where this young man went....unto God.... into the universe....very quickly....without pain and fear. And for his father.....who was left behind....who sees this image every minute now too.....I can only mentally send my deepest sympathy...and hope that someday he will be able to live without seeing this image every time he breathes.

I think I'll hit
publish post and go outside again....check on the stars...make sure they are there....

How strange to think of sleeping through the night without the worry..... to sleep and not to think about some radar.....some radar with green and red and pink.....heading for your many times I have talked to my home and said silently to strong....hold on....let the fury flow over you.

What strange strange times these have been.......

Friday, May 20, 2011

The End of the World

I stocked up on my favorite champagnes and wines cause True Believers are supposed to be raptured tomorrow.... Saturday, May 21st at 6pm....and I wasn't sure if the employees of my favorite liquor store might vanish along with all their stock. ( I really didn't think the liquor would get raptured....but figured all the folks left behind would loot the store before I could get there.)

I, of course, won't be
rapturing since I'm not Christian and those of us left behind...are destined for a terrible 5 months of chaos before the world officially ends in October....double bad news for me.....because it means surviving a typical southern summer of intense heat and humidity (probably without electricity) coupled with chaos before relief arrives....hence the need for adequate supplies of wine and champagne.

I only bought red wine which could be served room temperature even in chaos and figured I could store the champagne in the crawl space under the house where it's cool although not frosty cold.

But heck....I'll probably have more to worry about than the ideal serving temperature for champagne.

I also bought an extra bag of cat food.....because if there is anything that would surely fray my nerves is cats howling preceding the End of Times.

Finally, I stopped at
Krispy Kreme and splurged on a few doughnuts....then I realized.....after I ate one....that only the raptured should be eating greasy food and sugary treats since their figure won't matter after tomorrow....where as I.....need to be in tip top shape to face chaos.

My bad.

I do have a small horde of vitamins so maybe I can make up for my transgression.

I seriously tried to make a list of what I would do if the world was really coming to an end tomorrow.....I thought even the non-
raptured.....could benefit from this type of exercise... probing your deepest desires in the short time you have left....unfortunately....I scheduled several meetings for next week and had so many things on my "to do" list for this weekend....I couldn't truly scare myself into thinking the end was near and so my revelatory list began to look more like my grocery list.

Truly....that's a shame....because sometimes you should stop and think about your demise and see what sort of things rise to the top of your do-this-right-now- list.

Tell someone you love them? Tell someone you are sorry for hurting them? Make peace with someone who annoyed you.....reach out in friendship to someone you didn't have time for?

Krispy Kreme donut....has made me feel bloated and somnolent....and the only think I can think of is the little sign in the donut shop that said the donuts were kosher.


What a revelation!

Bye Bye .......

Monday, May 16, 2011

The Kugel Queen Reigns for One More Year.

Yours truly, the Kugel Queen, reigned supremely over the Kugel and Blintz Booth yesterday at the Jewish Food Festival.

I wish I had pictures....but your royal highness here....was so busy....from 6am till 5pm……I never could get my phone out of my apron pocket!

This is truly a labor of love…..because the week before the festival is quite stressful for a queen who doesn’t cook.

First of all….I have to help make 25 huge pans/tubs of noodle kugel. By “help” I mean….I’m the kitchen slave to my hub and the director of the festival who mix and blend and bake this Eastern European delight in a commercial kitchen.

The two baking sessions are followed by “jamming”….the art of scooping strawberry jam into little ¼ cup portion cups. The jam is not for the kugel but my booth also sells blintzes….and we give out a sour cream cup plus a jam cup with the blintzes. Fortunately, other folks do the sour cream….I’m just responsible for the jam.

I make a 1000 jam cups….neatly organizing them into plastic bags containing 50 cups a piece…. and then I stuff about 40 bags in my second fridge in the garage.

Of course, I worry too. Being in charge of a booth means scheduling volunteers…..making sure you have all your equipment….and keeping everything coordinated.

Of course, people are your biggest variable….some volunteers I plead sweetly with….to ensure they will be there…other folks…like some of the younger guys….I use guilt….telling them if they don’t show up…..people won’t get a break to eat, sit down or PEE. It works!

We usually have about 10,000 folks come through the festival….which means we serve a lot of kugel and blintzes. Yesterday was a beautiful day….so we could have had more folks...I haven't heard the official estimate yet.

Strange….for one brief moment… I saw pairs of policeman roam our festival…. I thought of this week’s arrest in NYC of folks who were making plans to bomb a synagogue ….and here we all were….working and dishing our food and friendship out at our festival….all clumped easy target.

But I shook my head….to get rid of my thoughts.....because you can’t think of those things or you could be paralyzed with fear.

So the blintzes…cooked brown in their butter…..the kugel came out of the warmer and hit hundreds of plates…..and a good time was had by all.

This morning…I required one muscle relaxant and a couple of aspirins .....but the Kugel Queen rose (although slowly)…..and quickly threw her greasy apron into the wash.

Next year….there will be a new Kugel Queen……

And all I ca say is.....Hail to the new Queen!!

While I will be a lowly volunteer in some other booth.....Yippeeee!

Saturday, May 07, 2011

My $8.99 Tomato

What can say?

It's my first year trying to grow a vegetable.....a tomato plant.

Since I have lots of shade around my house....I bought a large clay pot and planted a store bought tomato plant in it (8.99 for a foot high starter) and nestled the pot close to my driveway where sunshine is consistent in the afternoon.

The plant had a promising amount of green tomatoes till the bad weather and hail storm....which made big holes in fruits and tore several leaves off.

Today....I plucked off one of the lower tomatoes....which had turned red and only had a few scars.

As you can see.....I better not count on this plant to provide for our salads this summer
. I would estimate, when cut in half, perhaps two bites worth of food.

Still it is
my first tomato.....

although I think I'll be visiting the Farmer's Market next week.

Friday, May 06, 2011

Who's the Special Op Dog?

There's a lot of speculation about the Special Ops Dog which accompanied the Mission in Pakistan.

Was it a German Shepherd or another breed? (Most Special Op Dogs are either German Shepherds or Belgian

Did it have titanium fangs? (Yes....some of the Special Op Dogs have a titanium cover fitted over their front fangs so their bite can pierce personal armor. Can you imagine anything scarier than a big growling dog with shiny steel fangs? I'm thinking Stephen King Novel here)

Was he a bomb dog or a tracker? (Apparently, dogs don't multi-task anymore. They are specifically trained to be explosive sniffers or human trackers)

Did he carry equipment? ( Most dogs don't go fur-only anymore into a job. They have flack jackets to protect them from bullets or knives....they can have collars with an intercom and/or camera attached so their handler can talk to them as well as see what they see...and some have a short pole that sticks up from their flack jacket with a flashing light so their trainers can see them in dark/foggy conditions)

Was he a Euro Dog or an American Dog? ( Most of the military dogs have been bred in Europe where there is a strong tradition of breeding dogs for military use. In recent years, there's been talk that the US is starting to breed dogs here)

There's lots of possibilities......



MY DOG was not involved or would ever be considered
as his specialty is sleeping in t he sun.

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Sun's out/ Weather bitch is vanquished

After two weeks of wind, rain, hail, tornadoes, funnel clouds, flooding, downed trees and 5 million weather alerts....the sun is out.

I think a couple more days of those 3 loud weather alert beeps.....and I would have chopped my ears it was.....I felt some kinship to Pavlov's poor dogs.....yes...those bitches that were in his conditioned reflex experiment. Ring bell....salivate while waiting for food.

Me? 3 loud weather alert beeps.....and I was close to needing a Depends undergarment.

There's only so many weather beeps for tornado watches, warning, hail, and flooding one can take in a couple week period and I was at the top of my quota.

The only good thing is I made sure my pantry (the safest room in my house should a tornado come barreling through) was not only stocked with my good wine....but also a wine opener.

I realized this the first time I hit the closet....hmmmm....lots of wine stashed in here....nice amount of peanuts too...thanks to a giant Sam's club purchase....but it ain't gonna do me any good if I can't open the bottle while waiting to be rescued.

So now I've got wine, peanuts and a corkscrew in the pantry.... along with my flashlight and candles.

You make due...when you don't have a basement.

Well...I calculate in 5 minutes the sun will be hitting my front porch.....and I've got my trusty broom leaning against the wall here....time to go sweep up some debris. Guess I could get the leaf blower out...but that would bring my chore to an end too quickly....I want to sweep slowly in the SUN....and let me skin feel the warmth....and let my eyes relish the blue sky....and let my psyche relax.

Whooo hooo for the sun!