Sunday, January 10, 2010

Ridin' the Flavor Train to Tastytown

My favorite winter sport is eating. Not in a competitive way, just generally. Now that the holidays are over I've put the brakes on the crazy rich foods (the cookies, oh god, the cookies) and have been making more sensible yums (the banana waffles I made for brunch yesterday don't exactly count as sensible - but hey, I used whole grain flour and there were bananas involved so shut up - I should have snapped a photo of them because they were gorgeous.). This weekend I've been particularly productive in the kitchen and thought I would share with you some photos of the tasty treats I've concocted:

The hummus (MDH and I dipped into it a smidge before I snapped the photo):

The cucumber chips:

What remains of my whole grain pasta with spicy Thai peanut sauce with onions and sweet red peppers (chopped raw scallions on top for garnish and a little kick). I wish there were more left over cause it's one of those dishes I like better cold:

A little something I like to call "Grape Salad", but is really just green and red (or black) seedless grapes removed from the vine and stem and rinsed like mad. If you get the right mix of grapes they should be sweet and tart. They look so pretty don't they? Another one of my alternative snacking ideas as they are good to reach for instead of popcorn or chips:

What the hell else am I going to write about on a lazy Sunday, eh? I'm having so much fun sharing the food pictures, I'm going to throw in some other photos I've taken recently:

Look! My amaryllis finally bloomed. It's freaking huge too, like more than 3 feet tall. Now that it's actually flowered it's no longer creepy. In the background of this photo you can see the shopping bags filled with Christmas tree ornaments because I was in the process of taking down our tree:

Traditionally I shop for Christmas decorations the week after Christmas when everything is 75% off. It's pretty dumb to pay full price for this crap. I leave the new ornaments wrapped up and forget all about them until the next year and then it's like having a bunch of little surprises when I'm decorating the tree. Next year I'm sure I'll be delighted when I unwrap this goofy toadstool ornament. (That's my friend Jogger's wedding invitation on the table in the background - February 2nd is the big day!):

Below is what might be one of the worst Christmas presents I've ever gotten. It's safety orange nylon. NY-LON. It's even more revolting in person. No gift receipt either. To make matters worse I felt bad because I knew my mother was unable to go out Christmas shopping this year (she broke her pelvis this past fall and is still recovering) and bought everything on QVC, so I told her it was cute. I am a big fat liar-head.

On a bright note, this is one of my oldest and most favorite and most miraculous Christmas ornaments. It's a hand blown (I assume) glass snowman and it's very delicate. It feels like a feather. The thing that is miraculous about it is - look at it's nose - that it's nose is still intact. All these years (about 8) and I haven't managed to smash it or break the tip of that snowman's nose. See you next year little snowman...

Happy Sunday.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Because I'm Better Than You, That's Why

Sometimes, sometimes I don't wash my hands in public restrooms. Now you know. Don't hate me though. Keep reading. I have my reasons and alternative solutions. I feel a little bit funny about it when I don't, but then I think it's probably OK because typically I don't have to touch my lady junk directly, so to speak, and I don't pee on my hands when I'm using a public toilet (or anywhere else for that matter, at least not on purpose - I felt I must clarify for those of you smarty pant-ses out there) and since it's not physically (it's really a mental block) possible* for me to poop in a public restroom the difficulties that might sometimes arise in cleaning up after that simply don't come up.

Now that I've gotten that important announcement out of the way I'd like to say that what I worry about more than sometimes leaving the ladies room without washing my hands is that sometimes other public women's room patrons (see bullet points of previous post below mentioning my friend Dan's extensive, habitual use of women's restrooms - we don't want to be politically incorrect and assume that all women's room patrons are necessarily women now do we?) seem to notice that I haven't washed my hands and when they do they give me the hairy eyeball, or at least I perceive that they do and this post is my way of giving an explanation. You see most times I do wash my hands in public restrooms provided that the circumstances are such that:

A. There is an option for warm water to be dispensed from the tap. When you live in colder climes having the water blast from the tap at minus ice balls degrees is both a blessing and a curse. A blessing when you'd like a nice cold glass of water to drink and a curse when you would like to wash your hands after using a public toilet and discover the water is not only coming out of the tap freezing cold enough to stop your fucking heart, but also that there is really no option to warm that shit up. Oh sure the tap has an "H" on it indicating that hot water might be available if only you wait long enough, but some middle management penny pinching asshole has turned the hot water off and you are only kidding yourself that it will ever warm up. Not to make a pun, but hell will freeze over first before that water heats up. The hot water is a ruse. I'm not washing my hands here.

B. There is a paper towel option for drying my hands. Those air dryers are for suckers. It takes a year and a day to make any progress and I've got places to go and people to do. The air dryer fritters away my life and I haven't got time for that shit. Half the time when I do consent to using the air dryer the air blowing out is just as freezing cold as the tap water and/or I end up frustrated and drying my hands on my pants or desperately going back into a stall and dabbing at my hands with toilet tissue to dry them. Either way it ends in tears.

C. Please don't even get me started on the cloth diaper towel dispenser type of hand dryer that just spins and spins in filthy, germy circles. I have never in all my travels encountered one of those contraptions that wasn't brownish-yellow and dripping wet with ladies room cooties. No thank you. Even if I had whizzed all over myself why would I wash up and then dry off with that gross spinny diaper towel.

D. The absence of miscellaneous other minor gross outs and inconveniences including but not necessarily limited to:

No soap. No towels. Broken hand dryer. Bathroom filthy in general. Sink clogged with tissues or paper towels. Puddles of water (I hope it's water) on the counter and no place to lean without touching it. Not enough sinks and/or towel dispensers thus causing me to have to wait in line to wash my hands or stand dripping waiting to dry them afterwards. Unable to make the appropriate Ninja moves or otherwise psychically connect with the automatic laser tap/laser soap/laser towel in such a way that causes the laser dispenser to hook me up with the necessary hand washing supplies to make it happen (I'm performing freaking Tai-Chi in a mirror front of ten strangers who are waiting to use the facilities after me and nothing is happening).

So in closing the main reason I don't wash my hands in public restrooms is because I'm a germophobe. Would you like another helping of crazy?

If it makes you feel any better or at least less inclined to hit me with the stink eye, rest assured I usually carry disinfectant wipes in my purse that I employ just in case of such emergencies as not being fully satisfied with the cleanliness of the facilities at hand. I'm not going to pee, leave the rest room without washing my hands and then run off and make you or anyone else a sandwich. It's cool, don't worry about it.

*For those of you that may have been reading my blog for a long time you might remember** that I have previously mentioned being able to poop anywhere. That used to be true but is not anymore. At one point when I was living my life on the road (anyone seen the movie Up In the Air yet?) I adapted my body so that I could poop or sleep anywhere*** and under any conditions.

**It's kinda creepy that you remembered that Dude.

***Anywhere indoors. I have always and probably will always**** be unable to sleep or poop out of doors.

****OK. Like maybe if end of days came and everything was destroyed and I was left here with no running water (how will I make my tea?) and only pine needles for a bed, because I can guaran-fucking-tee you that I will not be called up to Jesus when the rapture comes. When that happens, that's when I'll poop outside.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Life's candy and the sun's a ball of butter

There isn't much to report but today I'm compelled to write a blog post anyway so what you're probably going to get is a rambler. I'm just going to keep typing and see what shakes out. I'm pretty sure that bullet points and blurting out whatever comes to your stupid mind are how Byron and Tennyson and did it.

Let's see... it's kind of late for all the happy new year well wishing stuff (consider yourselves well wished) and I wouldn't share with you my list of resolutions because I don't make new year's resolutions. I'm patently opposed to them, although for some reason I seem to come up with all of my brightest ideas to incorporate big changes and/or improvements to my life in early January. I keep these to myself until mid-February or so... just so they are not mistaken for new year's resolutions.

One of my bright ideas for life style improvements that I will not be implementing officially until mid-February, and is most certainly not a new years resolution, is the need to incorporate more exercise into my daily routine. I have recently been toying with the idea of rejoining my old gym and I just can't bring myself to do it. Not in January. What is more pathetic than a middle aged fat chick joining a gym in January? I guess maybe a fat chick never joining a gym at all, but still. Or now that I think of it, more pathetic than that is the fat chick who joins the gym in January and then stops going in early February and yet continues to pay for that shit well into the next year. Especially more pathetic when said fat chick already owns enough gym equipment to train the US Olympic.... um what? I was going to say women's basketball team or something like that just to be silly, but after taking a quick mental inventory I've realized that I probably realistically could train the curling team right here in my very own home. Have you seen those guys? What could they possibly need that I don't have in my basement this very minute. I'm pretty sure I have all the necessary equipment, which is to say a treadmill, two stationary bikes, a set of 3 pound weights (pink ones) and an industrial size push broom. Something to think about...

But enough about my semi-real plans to coach Olympic curling...

What else is new? Did I ever tell you about my best friend Amy's stalker? It's her ex-boyfriend from forever ago, blah, blah, blah. It's kind of old news. He's deranged and he lives in Los Angeles and for some reason is still upset about the fact that she broke up with him well over 15 years ago. Now that's a grudge. Anyhoo... he's just your average psycho ex-boyfriend stalker sending threatening emails and such. Amy has a restraining order and followed all the proper channels. Yawns all round. But what is very interesting and exciting news is that Amy's stalker must have gotten bored of her ignoring him and has recently been stalking and making prank phone calls and sending threatening emails to her ex-husband Assface. Saying all kinds of lovely, obscene things about Amy to him. It's delicious and not just because it makes Assface so very angry, but also because Assface doesn't have the same amount of common sense that God gave to hamsters and refuses to hang up the phone or put the stalker on his block-senders list. He listens and reads and sets himself up for a right huge hissy fit every time. Funny.

I think there is no better way to end a shitty rambling post like this one than with bullet points detailing the highlights of our trip to Columbus to celebrate New Year's Eve:

  • Dinner at the swanky restaurant was a bust. It was a four course prix-fixe menu which at $45 per person seems very reasonable, but the food kind of sucked. We would have been better off to rent a room at Claddaugh and doused ourselves in beer and corned beef.

  • Alas before Frenchie had the chance to get drunk enough to pass out while sitting up she and Nature Boy got a call from the sitter that their son young Jimmy Neutron was sick and they had to leave the festivities early. Bummer.

  • The rest of us were able to rally until midnight and watch the ball drop with what remains of Dick Clark. Guilty laughter filled the room as Amy dared to say what we were all thinking - he looks a bit like Cha-ka from Land of the Lost. I'm not saying that he should be hidden away. Why should he? You go Dick! I admire his bravery and fuck it - he owns the goddamn show and he can host if he wants. More power to him. But how about some fucking subtitles? Nobody could understand a goddamn thing he was saying. I take that back. Seacrest and Clark were like psychic friends, simpatico, slurred speech and drowned out by a crowd of thousands cheering in the background, Seacrest seemed to understand every word:

    Clark: Aahhh mahh gah heeba Ryah!
    Seacrest: That's right Dick.

  • I might be a terrible person.

  • Fuck it. Dick Clark had a stroke and his face looks funny and it's hard to understand him. Big deal. Host the show my old friend, but maybe have someone smarter than Ryan Seacrest translate for us.

  • I spent New Year's Day with 2 of my very best friends in the world, Amy and Dan. We went to see Avatar, but not in 3D for fear that I would get motion sickness and throw up as I have been known to do when I get caught up too tightly in the action.

    In the middle of the movie I had a full on, nearly peed my pants, silent laughing jag when Dan came back from his second trip to the bathroom during the film and whispered to me, "I've been to the bathroom twice during this film and just now realized that both times I was in the women's bathroom."

    Apparently he just thought it was one of those really nice, all stall men's restrooms. Sure.

  • My new favorite breakfast food in the whole wide world is pho and my favorite place to get it is here. We stopped by on our way out of town where I quickly slurped it down and then grabbed a bahn-mi to go for my lunch later on. Who knew that the girl who never even tried canned tuna fish until she was 20 would love Vietnamese?

That's all I've got. You still there? Thanks for sticking with me.