Fondue Memories

OK, this one is a bit out of sequence. It first ran in 2003, immediately following the strip I showed you two posts back. I like this particular strip, however, and I’m returning to it regardless. The original of this A&J hangs in the home of a friend, who experienced his own share of hallucinations back in the day. It hangs in his bathroom, actually. I have noticed that often is where my originals end up.

Buy the new book, "Beaucoup Arlo & Janis!"Today's "Arlo & Janis!"

228 responses to “Fondue Memories”

  1. Yes, ENB, I agree that many of the artists are victims of excess and in some cases, it is a wonder that they make it to their 60’s or 70’s. 36 years ago John Lennon was shot to death, but many of the other artists that died too soon were either a result of drugs/booze or a few died in airplane crashes, which they were more apt to take private planes in order to get to the next gig. Of course I have no statistics to back this up, but it seems more smaller planes crash than commercial airlines.

  2. Ah, Swedish meatballs. My late husband continued to like those served as an entree but I seldom cooked them, can’t remember last I made. He also liked one called porcupine meatballs I may have made occasionally.

    Remember the sweet and sour meatballs on a toothpick? I have a pound of ground round I need to use up. I think I will make some meatballs. Thanks Jimmy.

    You are going in kitchen in a row. You’d like my kitchen. I saw one of your strips in a restaurant I like, a small charming one the kids would like to own.

  3. Lutefisk is interesting, and I eat it 3x / yr., but it’s the Swedish meatballs I take seconds on. Also, of course love the rutabaga and lefse, especially if there’s cranberry sauce for the lefse.

    As to hate, I expect the rioting would have been similar or worse if the other candidate had won, so that at least cancels out. Who spewed the most hate, and was backed by which sects spew the most hate? Peace, one would hope.

  4. Mindy, you and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. I’m so sorry for your uncle’s passing. As Ghost noted above, this has truly been a year with more shadows than light.

    TruckerRon, thank you for that link to Eleanor Roosevelt’s radio address on December 7 of ’41. I had never heard it, either, and found it moving in it’s message of acceptance and strength.

  5. Lady Mindy, my deepest condolences to you also for your loss. I was out of pocket yesterday, and I missed your post on my first quick catch-up pass through the comments on a tiny phone screen.

  6. Since Ghost is back, I will inject some holiday cheer here.

    My ongoing pet peeve about lingerie, Victoria Secret and now Heidi Krum bra lines do not have a single bra I can wear. I get sale promotions, go to website and no joy. Nothing in my size.

    Good news is I have found two women’s lingerie lines that have in store and online shopping that fit. Both lines go only to 40DDD or 42DDD usually but that works.

    And exactly why would anyone requiring that size want a bra that guarantees you will be two sizes bigger? And why would they add padding to said lingerie items?

    Hope this brightened your lunch hour Ghost.

  7. emb, perhaps we can get peace if the disaffected will quit stirring the pot and publishing inflammatory material based on feelings rather than facts.

  8. Jackie, if you book that face lift you were apparently considering awhile back, perhaps you could look into a breast reduction procedure as well. Of course, I realize that may be an extreme solution for the problem of finding bras that fit you.

    One of my lady friends had that done a few years back, and she was very pleased with the results. And I couldn’t complain about them, either. 😉

  9. My lunch hour could certainly use some cheering up. Just got off phone with my cousin who is one of my guardians. He says Allstate has screwed up on my truck, have done nothing. What they are telling him isn’t what they told me.

    Yet to even get a form letter from Allstate. I have to call them and try to get it in shop.

  10. Saddened to hear about Greg Lake’s passing but even more shocked to discover that Keith Everson died by his own hand this past March. 2016 certainly had not been a goo year for the giants of Rock.

  11. Blinky, what makes Emerson’s passing even more tragic is that, according to his girlfriend, he did it out of despair because his skills had declined to the point that people were trolling him about it on the internet. He had gotten nerve damage through his playing style and was having trouble playing up to his previous levels and some people were starting to complain that he didn’t sound like his old self.

  12. At risk of censure:

    TruckerRon, I laud and applaud your efforts at reality. The problem I continuously fail to resolve is the response received. Pointing out hypocrisy tends to blind the subject further, entrenching them deeper in their position; enlightenment, if it ever comes, comes too late for the current interaction.

    Yet the solution I’ve been told to implement, just let them vent, they want to be heard, does nothing to counter beliefs that are actually destructive to the community that includes the vent-or.

    There must be a balance point. It continues to elude me. It is a pattern observed in childhood (receiving instruction), dating, employment that becomes unemployment, parenting (giving the instruction), marriage that becomes divorce, medical interactions, end-of-life concerns. Really, all facets of life experience.

    Experiencing it is often confusing and painful. Observing it remotely does not lessen the feeling.

  13. further on, read after above:

    emb feels the need to claim,” well, yeah, but.. but.. YOUR SIDE WOULD HAVE BEEN WORSE!” I realize the fallacy of putting words into someone’s mouth. But that really is how it appears.

    Mark, you found better words than I, also, well done.

    To our other theme, I will not miss 2016. Sincerely looking forward to new experiences next year. The fact that a sheet of paper turning over allows us the construct of ‘last year’ can be wonderfully freeing.

  14. huh, ‘to read’ the imperative
    and, ‘had read’ the explanation of past behavior

    read exactly the same when in a hurry.

    I meant I posted before reading further. I’ll try to be more careful.

  15. Morphy, I saw a funny tee shirt. “You are entitled to your opinion. I can’t force you to be right.”

    Think a lot of us could wear that tee.

  16. On balance, I’ve found my sense of humor doesn’t match ‘That is Priceless’. Rediscovering art is great, but the comic interpretations can be offensive.

    Not calling for censorship or worse, just stopped looking at what I don’t appreciate

    Jackie, I like it. Especially because it comes in sizes to fit both emb and I!

  17. Today’s TIP BlogSpot is titled “Anatomy of the heart.” The woman is a corpse/cadaver, so the anatomist is not a surgeon removing what he took to be tonsils. Another skilled painter, also worth reading up on. Peace,

    About putting words in my mouth: My position is supported by the president elect’s baseless contention that the election was rigged against him, by what seemed to be only slightly veiled calls for ‘true Americans’ to rise up against the conspirators, and by many isolated but nasty incidents since the election towards members of the groups he vilified. My question remains, “Who spewed the most hate, and was backed by which sects spew the most hate?”


  18. Ten pound dog is snuggled into a pile of clothes waiting to go on hangers. He thinks they are there for him to sleep in.

    Organizing clothes is a pain but it sure makes dressing a lot easier. Especially if I’d get out of pajamas. I am exhausted and need a nap.

    I have a new method I experimented with traveling this year. I completely coordinate an entire outfit, jacket, sweater, Ruana, pants, shirt, all the stuff I layer with all together attached and put in closet. Just pull out and I can dress in minutes with no searching, hunting for stuff. The searching is annoying.

    Told you I was Janis.

  19. Ghost beat me to it. Two hands up for an American Hero. Living to 95 with two trips to space, albeit in different carriers, John certainly got his money’s worth. I thought of him just last week and how lucky we were that he was still with us.

    John Glenn, Arnold Palmer and Gordie Howe. Three men who showed determination and class. Sometimes the good don’t die young.

  20. Funny, I do not find TIP funny. I love art, own it, tour it. Going to Gilcrease Museum on Saturday to see art exhibits and hear the Tulsa Symphony do small group music in galleries.

    I enjoy private galleries, public museums, art shows, all levels of art talent.

    Just can’t fathom how TIP gets paid for what he does.

  21. President elect is not using a proxy to not abide the constitutional will of the electorate.

    Further comment withheld in interest of PEACE.

    Standing by what I’ve written is why I chose to never change my possibly inappropriate handle.

    Mundi pax.

  22. emb, Morphy, my feeling follows a saying I read somewhere I can’t remember. “Everybody has a right to their own opinion. But we have a right not to have to listen to it”. Life would be quieter and more peaceful if more people would think about that before talking.

    Goodbye John Glenn. I remember watching those Mercury flights as a kid. Even had the GI Joe with spacesuit and Mercury capsule to play with.

  23. Mark you do do well.

    Is the advice best used before beginning the conversation?
    In responding to a conversation in progress?
    Or both?

    At hazard of continuing what may be better dropped:
    I opine: Beginning

    Once started, some things demand response. Silence is acquiescence. We should not submit to the coming administration. Either administration.

    More fake Latin wishes for peace.

    Sincere wishes for a future less encumbered with loss.

  24. There’s a lot of this sort of thing going around:
    “Satire is a sort of glass, wherein beholders do generally discover everybody’s face but their own.” ~Swift
    Found that on today’s Comic Strip of the Day blog. Not everyone will agree with Mike’s politics but he does provoke some thought fairly frequently. Here’s the rest –

  25. …And now for something completely different:

    I was gazing at the Shark Cam site, thanks to info posted here a couple of years ago. It tells me that a camera is off-line to protect it from the forthcoming hurricane, and to watch taped views until it gets back on line. Are we really expecting an Atlantic hurricane 1/4 the way through December?

  26. Hey, let’s be positive here. It’s Symply’s birthday but I refuse to discuss rest, he can. Wish him happy birthday and how much fun he has contributed here.

    Can’t try to be positive and amusing all by myself here. I can’t get a comment with lingerie even. How about snow? Cold? Let’s talk about the weather!

    The sun has come out here today. Just really cold. I invited the cats inside but no one seems interested. They have cat beds and a couple cat houses, he Ted dog house if they like dogs.

  27. [Even more different:] There is a site run by upon which one may check out an email address as existing or not. Good for those addresses you think you know, but of which you are not certain. I tried it and it seemed to work.
    Of course, there can be no guarantee the searched email address is for the person you are seeking as opposed to someone else with, say, a similar name.

  28. c e-p: Frying Pan Tower recently posted on Facebook that they’re waiting on a part and hope to have the shark cam back up sometime this month.

    Nature webcams – highly recommended as escape from this lousy month!

  29. c e-p, the always-on internet is rarely always updated. Is that message even from this past season, or one or two before?

    pet peeve of customer support: ‘all your questions are answered in our FAQ’s’

    You mean the FAQ page you wrote when you established the page, five major versions ago? Yeah, I know it’s that old because I’ve already read it.

    I don’t mind things being out of date. I don’t like pretending it is not.

  30. Not only are my friends and others I know losing family members but many have pets dying. As far as I am concerned, pets ARE family so I offer similar condolences as I know they are grieving. It has been several horses, enumerable cats and dogs.

    Is it just our own ages doing this? The death of John Glen made me start thinking of all the astronauts I had known personally since I lived in Nassau Bay and League City for 15 years, went to church with them, kids at school, they were my floral customers. Started googling and everyone seems to be deceased. That did not cheer me up.

  31. Positive post here. This is Charlie Bolden, Major General and current administrator of NASA. Charlie is a hero in many, many ways and his biography sounds like John Glenn’s for his service to our country.

    But Charlie is ALIVE!!

    My daughters went to school with his kids at St. Thomas. Charlie and his wife Jackie belonged to my church where he was deacon. The nicest people you’d want to know. He is two years younger than me and still serving our country.

    Thank you, Charlie.

  32. Tying back to Jimmy’s story arc this week. Sen. Glenn was one of the earliest people with the opportunity to see those twinkling objects without their twinkle. His viewing angle didn’t change much on the big scale, so all those constellation shapes would be familiar. But I like to imagine that the steady gaze of innumerable, unblinking stars, which might be intimidating at first, might become comforting in the way that knowing it really is the same. And will stay the same, no matter what you do, how you fail, and all your accomplishments, it will still be the same. For far longer than our foreseeable progeny will know, the universe will be. I find comfort, not insignificance, in that.

  33. Ah, Jackie, you did get a response to your”rant” about bras. I know because it was from me at 12:14 PM.

    And as far as weather is concerned, it’s going to be much too cold tonight for this Southern boy. Oh, did I ever mention the time I walked outside (not here, of course) and found it was minus 64 degrees F? Can anyone here in the Village best that?

  34. My apologies Mr. Ghost, I was so upset about Trigger I did not see your remarks.

    Yes, I talked to the plastic surgeon about breasts and stomach. He said it was painful surgery and mine were fine for my age (well he said mine were better than 90% of female population in Oklahoma of any age) and to wear a bra as I was doing. He said at my age he wouldn’t bother with worrying about looking like a 20 year old again.

    No one but me ever sees them anyway nowadays. But funny thing is back in my 30s when things were rocky in my life I went to see a friend, plastic surgeon in Houston, and he said same thing. Except he said I was too young for a face lift too.

    So, I found a couple of brands that are bearable and I am back on diet except for wine I am having to cheer me up and finish bottle. Back exercising too, so things will be back to normal except gravity.

    Were you in Antarctica or Artic, Santa Claus?

  35. I was in an undisclosed location.

    Sounds as though you’re a subscriber to my theory that one should, whenever possible, do the best one can with what one has.

  36. GR6, yeah I’m curious too! My personal best, lowest, is -18°F actual. I’ve had bad windchill before, but I doubt even that got to 50 below. What godforsaken stretch of our blue marble did you enjoy a fast cup of chicory that day? Don’t tell me, if you have to kill me. Or was it in service to Papa Noël, like Jackie suspects?

  37. Regarding the idea that if the winning side had lost then they’d be rioting… that’s counter to reality given the total lack of riots by that side when they lost in ’08 and ’12. Those on that side weren’t happy with the results, but they also didn’t need safe spaces with hot chocolate and coloring books provided by their college administrators. They accepted the results (no frantic cries for recounts!) and moved on with their lives. Had they lost this time, they would have repeated their prior behavior and moved on.

  38. Ron, well posted. Just the facts, ma’am. Avoids my conflicts.

    Snacking on a splurge of chewy-style store bought cookies, reading habit shows the ingredient Interesterified Soybean Oil. Don’t know about terrified, but definitely lost interest. Remembering the Olestra fiasco, and jokes of unwanted ‘discharge’.

    I think if I deserve a treat I’ll bake it myself.

  39. Lil Ghost is in kitchen learning to be a house cat. He got some chicken for dinner and is being petted and spoiled. He is so adorable and chubby. He has white whiskers and a white mustache and Bible. He is purring and chirping.

    Dickens is dubious that he wants an adorable competitor for affection.

  40. I thought we were done. It was obviously a mistake to post Rheta’s column. It won’t happen again.

    The post, two above, if nobody sneaks in, ignores an obvious major difference between McCain and Romney on the one hand and the ’16 nominee on the other. The former two did not have the proper mentality or whatever it takes to ‘poison the well’ in case they lost []. The one who won the Electoral College vote [and I accept that, as it’s in the Constitution] seemed to want an uprising to occur if he didn’t win. The nominees’ behavior in ’08 and ’12 was almost totally unlike the ’16 nominee’s behavior.

    As to ‘Which side has assaulted people on the other side?’, some on the winning side have done so since the election, either physically as in ripping off a hijab, or verbally, both orally and in graffiti. Bye.

  41. I don’t believe Jackie ‘sneaks’ at all. Though she may be temporarily incognito as anon, from time to time.

    For the rest, I believe it has been adequately answered.

  42. GR6, my personal experienced low temp was -40° below. Occurred during a refueling, we had to exit plane without any arctic clothing. Highest temp I am aware of was 121° F.

  43. My kitchen is place of honor. Jimmy is going up with a George Rodrigue original, good company. I haven’t decided on who or what else qualifies as favored art. I spend more time there than in bed.

    Llee our Villager made it to my bedroom walls. I look at her work every time I wake up.

  44. Lynn,
    I can’t speak for others, our A&J originals are framed and hung in places for viewing by all who visit. They blend beautifully with our other original and limited addition works.

  45. All that talk of meat balls, I can’t decide whether to make stuffed colored peppers tomorrow or meatballs to use that pound of ground round. It’s one or t’uther. And zucchini.

    The zucchini are taking up too much room in fridge.

    Have run out of velvet hangers again. I bought a new pack of 25 and can’t find where I put them! Time to stop clothes sorting and shifting.

  46. Jackie, the zucchini would probably be okay out of the refrigerator for a few days; that’s my experience. The larger ones anyway; if teensy, better off in fridge, but take up small space.

  47. Dear emb, maybe I’m sneaking in — I wrote Jackie about zucchini but I don’t know where it is now. I had not read Rheta Johnson’s column you sent a link to earlier, so I just went back and found it after you alluded to it. Wow! I agree with her completely but lots of people don’t — no wonder it drew some comments (that I didn’t quite understand).

    We had really better make a resolution not to get on the subject of politics and related stuff here. The Village can be a calm and friendly place to go when we need solace. Many of us need to get away from the outside world for a bit.

  48. I will have only part time gardener wearing Ann Klein and Chico. I am trying to get her to learn to dress well and leave the grunge look behind. I hated grunge back in the 80s. She is nice kid, loves snow boarding. Not much chance for that in Oklahoma.

    She’s going with me to museum Saturday.

    I figure my kids may hold garage sales or not.

  49. Steve fRO
    John Glenn, Arnold Palmer and Gordie Howe. Three men who showed determination and class. Sometimes the good don’t die young.

    People with determination and class – even at 95 is too young.

  50. My original, which is a bedroom one, is nicely framed and prominent in my bedroom. And now I have my Kickstarter reward next to it, bathrooms are for weird things that don’t fit anywhere else. ………. I’m happy to leave all my Trump loving on my facebook

  51. My kitchen bath has my decoy and duck art, I bought a lovely new piece when I visited Lee and where she shows. My back apartment bath is nautical. I’d describe mine as floral more or less with a huge contemporary floral over toilet.

    We spend too much time in bathrooms to blow them off.

  52. Jackie
    A balances Diet is a glass of wine in each hand.

    GM Debbe

    Coldest actual was minus 56* actual. 12 years later–
    Coldest wind chill was minus 75* reported but that was
    closer to metro area.
    We had to feed cows and pick eggs (it was a toasty +48* in with the

  53. Charlotte, at this time in particular, I agree. No more political discussions. This round has left too many people with a bad taste in their mouths on both sides. It’s over for the next 4 years, so no matter which person you dislike most, let it go and ride it out.

  54. Waited for a lull. Drafted off-line for convenience.

    Apologies to the village at large, for my terse addendum earlier. I was rushed by local needs.

    More completely, I can say that Rheta Grimsley Johnson is a professional writer, whom I have never had the pleasure to meet, nor would I profess to speak for her. If I may humbly share my understanding, and be so bold as to use the familiar as is done in the village, Rheta is an opinion columnist. Or rather the modern hybrid, regional lifestyle, travelogue, opinion author that permits her a wider readership than the simple editorial. But I would defer to her own job description if I knew it better.

    I may or may not agree with Rheta on any given subject. I doubt it would be 100% in either direction. But she didn’t post here.

    You, emb, have opinions, good ones too. Dearly held. But you choose to post articles you did not write, ‘without comment’. Purposefully oblivious to the fact that posting such IS offering an opinion. But in someone else’s voice.

    When called out on it -apologies, responded to- you claim pious innocence. Or, here, hide behind the idea that posting a link was the only point of contention.

    Claim your opinions as your own. Present facts to support. To the extent you’ve done that, I thank you. And respectfully disagree on several points of opinion.

    Rheta does not require my support or defense. It was your words, emb, that caused me to bristle.

    Happy Holidays, and the Merriest of Christmases.

  55. I am going to post a link here about good and positive actions we all should read. It came from a friend of mine, a male cowboy trail ride chuck wagon cook, not who you’d think would send it. It’s a letter of apology to Dolly Parton.

    I owe Dolly an apology too, I was poking fun tonight

    Read about her fight for literacy, getting a million books into children’s hands. Read about what she has done for her home state and victims of the fires. We should all apologize to this lady.

  56. I don’t know Dolly either, but what I remember of John Carson’s show and other appearances, she was well aware of the comedy provided by her physique. Kept a sense of humor appropriate for the times as we evolved. A talented woman who proved herself AFTER her body had caught your attention, who continues to do good works.

  57. New items for the toss-up round-

    From Wikipedia:
    Douglas Englebart’s ‘Mother of All Demos’ as it was later called, happened on this date in 1968. His oN-Line System (NLS) did not have a global population to connect to, but it was the functional predecessor of what we are now using as the village.

    Don’t know if Al Gore was there, but it was a good nine years (10?) before my TRS-80 BASIC education. Thank you Gates and Allen, and your tiny company Micro-Soft. With due credit to their many predecessors and coworkers from earlier organizations and institutions. Because they didn’t really build it themselves. But it was that early exposure that had me locked into the MS world of Redmond for nearly forty years.

    P. B. S. Pinchback, had the honor today as the first African-American Governor of a U.S. State, Louisiana, all the way back in anno domini 1878. He was Republican of course. A free man from birth in Macon, GA way back in 1837. I thought that wasn’t possible. That’s what school led me to believe.

    And for people bucking the trend of 2016, Kirk Douglas turns 100 today. Also born a free man in this great country. But that is not usually considered as remarkable. His publication discussing his reawakening in a religious sense, continues to slip on my reading list. I think I just made a new goal, in honor of his centennial.

    The things that are available to learn, from a site that is only as good as gossip heard over a fence, and for free. Truly amazing. Check your sources.

    Remember the reason for the season. And glad tidings to those of other faiths. Stay toasty, my friend.

  58. Jimmy, I display one of my modest collection of original comic strips in the bathroom also. It’s a “Mother Goose and Grimm” where the joke is about Grimm accidentally eating “tootsie rolls” out of the cat’s litter box. We have a dog and a cat, and I hung the strip right above the litter box, so you can guess why it’s there.

  59. Ghost I beat you to Apology to Dolly and posted it last night here at 11.48 with my personal apology to her.

    Great minds and all that. You had already gone to bed but I was still awake.

    Good morning.

  60. Dicken is licking my ankles and lower leg, has reached left knee, the one needing replacement. It is his way of “doctoring” me and healing pain. I am sure you have seen dogs do that if they have pain or wound.

    He is collapsed on comforter pile and asleep again.

  61. Happy birthday, Symply Fargone! I hope your year ahead is full of wonders.

    Charlotte, bless you, sweetie! I second your resolution. Mark, bless you, too!

    Jimmy, I love the way you soar in a storyline then bring us back to earth. How appropriate that your star-gazing strips ran this week when we are discussing John Glenn and all he means to us.

    Looks pretty cold in Indiana. Stay warm, Mindy and Debbe. My coldest experienced low temps are probably somewhere in the -20s F, Ghost; nowhere near yours or sand’s experiences.

  62. Sorry, Jackie; I don’t how I overlooked your post about the Dolly article. And yes, the fact that it was discovered by both a cowboy chuck wagon cook and a Ghost probably says something, I’m just not sure exactly what.

  63. That’s what I thought. Great minds. You’d like my friend Leon, he’s a complex man. He has “we are the people our parents warned us about” on his pickups back window.

    Unfortunately he is seriously married, just a boating friend.
    Like Ghost he uses a name cover and you cannot show his face in photos online. Like that line in Dukes of Hazard song, you can show his hands or back in photos.

  64. good afternoon villagers….

    …..I love this village and I need to go off the radar for a few days due to personal reasons. No one here has made this decision for me, it my decision. In the words of the “terminator”, I will be back. I just can’t keep up here, not like I use to. And until I return to the point of being Debbe who loves to bring smiles and laughters, I need to collect, recollect, resurrect…them

    My posts have been short and no depth to them…so, I will return, and until then….love to all.


  65. Charlotte: Thank you. As to obvious attacks on my character, followed by a ‘pious’ holiday greeting [itself a clearly religious assertion]: no comment, except to assert that I do not believe I am as devious as some think, and intend not to correspond with those who consider me falsely ‘pious’. Few, if any, in BUMC would characterize me as pious, falsely or otherwise. Openly opinionated, yes. Devout, yes. Orthodox, no. Involved, open, and generous, yes. James 2:18.
    The season:
    1. At 87, I suspect I consciously have experienced over 80 Christmases. Some have been better than others, but overwhelmingly they seem to have brought out the worst in many people and families, and in most institutions involved: private, public, educational, religious, military, domestic, and foreign [least egregiously in Prague, Czech.] I graciously attend some events and cheerfully greet friends and such, but generally lay low. I believe, without denying his real significance as I see it, that we know diddly about the birth and early life of Jesus of Nazareth, and actually little about the details of his death and what followed. I do not pretend to be a Trinitarian, just a heterodox [and heterosexual, in case anyone cares] Methodist.
    2. In 16-28 Dec. ’10, a period of some two weeks, I lost my beloved companion of over 60 years. December is, for me, mostly a month of mourning. I published two copyrighted essays, March and May ’11 in The Bemidji Pioneer about that, and have combined them in one document on this laptop. Some might find them self-serving and perhaps offensive, so I will not attempt to publish them here [unless I’ve already done so and forgotten that]. I might attach them to replies to emails.

  66. At 87 we can all be as opinionated as we like. Most people are not conversant at that age, much less articulate. I do not know how old Miss Charlotte is, 80s I think, so you are included in this comment, along with any other octogenarian readers out there.

    Carry on my friends. I can be friends without agreeing on things but it might surprise you what I agree on.

  67. emb, I am disappointed that refuting your words, by me or any other (you chose not to name), is an ‘obvious attack on [your] character’.

    I do not know how you have missed that I am fervently religious in my personal life. And I take the book of Matthew seriously. I have hinted at the cautions of his chapter 6, attempting to avoid falling jeopardy of chapter 7. I am curious if all Christians must agree with you personally in order to claim their grace? Otherwise they must not have religious feelings?

    There are over 250 million opinions available to vote in this national experiment of over 230 years. Most will not agree with me nor you. But we do it together anyway. It has been and remains, the bestest, greatest, all superlatives you may name, failure in the history of human government.

    Your curriculum vitae is impressive. But we do not have to wait until we pass sixty-five to have an opinion, or to question yours.

    I respect you. And disagree with you. Both are possible within the same brain-case, heart, and soul.

  68. Debbe, I know you are having a change in your local schedule, and hope you enjoy your new experience.

    If my civil dispute has added grief to your world, I sincerely, personally apologize.

    Merry Christmas

  69. While eating some lunch it occurred to me Ghost that you and Leon may read many things in common. He was a biker until accident stopped him. He flew small planes as well I believe and is a devout outdoorsman and Hunter and definitely guns.

    Not unusual you’d read same thing probably.

  70. Morphy you are indeed one of most articulate posters here, I enjoy what you say and often agree. I can tolerate disagreement and people unlike myself. I can even laugh at myself.

    Sort of like with Dolly, there is a brain and a heart under the boobs, hair and nails. We just use that for a disguise.

  71. Thank you for the compliment, Jackie. And I do not mistake it for blanket agreement. But simply the respect you intend.

    I often feel misunderstood. Which leads me to trying to find the perfect word. Which leads to too many words. I admire the brevity in other peoples writing. And feel like they are understood plainly. The resulting confusion feels unfair, and I deal with envy because of it. But must stick by what I feel as true. Communicate how I can. Knowing others have a different sense of truth.

    I like that you recognize messages cross paths in unpredictable ways. Subject to the server of this page, and posted as received. Without the sender knowing who they may have ‘stepped on’. Conversations overheard at a crowded party, or lonely echos in an empty room. Both happen here.

  72. Debbe: We will keep you in our thoughts and prayers. No explanations necessary. Come back when you can . Even if you can’t, try though. An occasional post out of character will not concern those of us who know you. I have found forcing myself to say or right something positive or funny when I don’t feel like it, helps me get through the tough periods of my life and bring me back to “normal” quicker. Of course my normal is pretty strange at times!

    A time for every season….a time to be quiet and a time to be verbose. I’ve been told that some of the best conversations that I have ever had were when I have not said a word. Listening is a quality that I’m afraid we do not use enough of. So when you are ready, we’ll be hear to listen.

    emb: I would to be like you when (or if) I grow up!

  73. My father had a habit of speech, when leaving on an errand he had to announce, “I shall return.” I do not know, he never said, if the reference was intended or accidental. When I learned Pacific Rim history, I started responding “See ya, MacArthur.” I’m not sure he ever laughed, well at that any rate.

    Unrelated, and for as long as I remember, his phone protocol at work was a sharp, Jones 4367, inserting real name and extension number. But any where else, at home, or someone else’s home, it didn’t matter, a drawl that started loud-fell-and rose again, “Nnnnnyellow?” I never learned if that was his own or borrowed from someone famous. It was such a personal identifier, he would cause confusion on the other end when answering someone else’s phone. “Oh, sorry I meant to call Harry. CLICK.” Moments later, when the phone rang again, and Harry was standing there by then, he’d let Harry answer. If I were calling, I answered with increasingly obscure colors. Red, blue became ecru, fuchsia, puce, or heliotrope over the years. When he refused to wear hearing aids, I had to go back to the Crayola 8 pk to continue the joke. Eventually returning to the polite, ‘Hi dad, it’s [Morphy], your son.’ Remembering isn’t always mourning.

    Thank you Debbe, for calling that memory to mind.

  74. Dear Debbe, you have used up so much of your strength in the last few weeks and months, no wonder you have none left over. You will rest and find some other directions for your great talent. Yes, you have an awful lot of talent in writing, in finding the ridiculous in even the bad things that keep happening to you — in finding the important things in life. I wish I could do that but I can’t, so I admire your writings and laugh along with you. Love you and want to see you back in the Village when you can return.

    Jackie, you are pretty smart to figure out my age. Maybe you have seen the baby pictures all over Facebook, my first great-grandchild. Little Max sure is cute! Yes, I am 83 and in February will be 84. I feel most fortunate to be in such good shape!

    Dear emb, you have my sympathy for your sadness at this time of year. It’s so terribly hard to lose a dearly loved companion of many years. Melancholy thoughts prevail — but we carry on. Take care, and keep posting your interesting science messages. I like reading about the orbits of the planets and about mammals and birds. I want to send you something really great, about whales. Do your interests extend to whales?

  75. Charlotte: Yes, I do. A favorite site, which I’ve posted here before, is a whale-watching site:


    This is one of several sites, which will not post here unless break it. I’ve chosen to put a space after the 4th letter in the word explore. What you do is copy the URL above into your browser, but close up the space before clicking on the URL. Right now it’s dark that far N [Hanson I., in the strait N of Vancouver I.], even though PST is 2 hr. [3 hr. for you] behind us, so they are running highlights, mostly of orcas [‘killer whales’] and humpback whales, and associated sea birds. Both whale spp. migrate out of these waters in winter, so there is less to see in real time, and there’s also a lot of bad weather, but not awfully cold, / the maritime effect.

    I’ve another interest in whales: their ancestry. Have to go back and see if I’ve posted on that here before.

    Sure beats politics, as did a retirement party I went to today. Peace,

  76. Tonight there was also the option of watching the northern lights over Churchill, Manitoba – (use the same technique to get there) http://expl Of course, those of you in the northern reaches of the Village may have the opportunity to see this in your own backyard.

  77. It appears we may have lurched our way to an accord that there should be a voluntary embargo on comments, posts, discussions, arguments, flame wars, etc. regarding political topics. If that is indeed the case, I believe the vast majority of us will consider that A Good Thing.

    Nothing that we as individuals say here is likely to have the slightest effect on the public events of the next few years, so we might as well confine our discussions to happier or at least less divisive matters. Food and sex come to mind as examples…but I jest. Or do I?

  78. Not that it is at all surprising, but as we approach the holiday season, I find my thoughts returning more and more to memories of my immediate family. One such comes from my father, who grew up on a farm with nine siblings. On Christmas morning, with my grandmother and her older daughters preparing for their celebratory noon meal, they would have fresh fruit (in itself a rare winter treat) along with cheese and crackers, rather than their normal hearty farm breakfast.

    My dad continued that tradition for as long as he lived, as did those of us who survived him. So a few days before Christmas this year, I will be purchasing an orange, an apple, a block of Cheddar cheese, and a box of saltine crackers. A small gesture, I know, but one that seems to grow in importance as each year passes.

  79. Ghost, I ate in my favorite bar-b-que restaurant tonight, a family owned one that I have eaten in since week he opened called Runt’s in Muskogee, Oklahoma. I thought of you because guns are welcomed there along with all police and assorted peace officers who do not pay. The safest place in town to eat.

    Ate looking at a wall with Dirty Harry and a bullet from his gun, Annie Oakley and hers, Dillenger and Teddy Roosevelt and the Rough Riders, a huge wall display of framed ammo. Tons of photos of hunts and stuffed critters. Runt does a great chicken fried. If you ever come I will the you there.

    Put photos on Facebook and will try to post link here. I ate a salad.

  80. Dearest Ghost, I like the Christmas custom in your family. It’s good that you are carrying on the tradition, which is one that I am learning for the first time. Maybe it was unique to your family. It’s a sensible thing to do. I’m trying to picture your father and his brothers and sisters, in the farmhouse, slicing the fruit and sharing it, and passing around the crackers and cheese. Would they have had a Christmas tree? Would this have been in the 1930’s?

  81. Emb I may have said before but I spent two weeks on boat where you are watching whales from near Vancouver. It is a beautiful area, like a fairy tale, snow and glaciers that were pouring waterfalls from everywhere you looked. I could have stayed forever.

    The water was so warm you could swim off boat even with snow around you on rocks above and waterfalls pouring. Only touched land twice in two weeks and that
    on islands. We did not see whales, they had passed the week before but saw lots of marine life like seals

  82. Here’s the photos from Runt’s tonight from Facebook with the guns welcome sign. And bullets. I thought of Bullet.

    By the way, my helper Tony hung my big metal cowhead on shop wall and right below it the big metal star framed by two guns that says “We don’t call 911” We are going to hang all the big metal stars and compass roses again. If they get stolen I may stake out my ysrd.

  83. Have not been lucky / live whale sightings. In June ’52, some porpoises or dolphins from a troopship having just left my bride of 5 weeks for 13 mo. in Germany [short], Fr. [almost as short] and GB, over 8 mo. Saw a dead, probably not fully grown black whale from the Exxon Valdez oil spill on Kodiak I., where we were visiting former BSU students. Then took a one day trip from Anchorage to Juneau, no whales, but interesting.

    Despite the weather [expect] double digits below 0 F], had a good day today, actually bittersweet. Here’s an email I wrote my kids with names except for Elaine changed.
    ‘As of about 1500, I’m up 5 photos of Elaine + 2 hugs. Judy King retired today. [Older son, BUMC pastor 2+ hr. S of Bji.] knows her; you others may not. She was switchboard operator at the old hospital [downtown; new one is just N of these townhomes], after having been a candy-striper, when she was still in high school: 45 years or more.

    Handled all incoming phone calls [some of you have heard this before]. I called Elaine once, and got this spritely little voice, who connected me w/ 3rd floor. Said to Elaine, “You have a pixie answering the phone.” “Oh, that’s Judy [maiden name].” Didn’t get to know her well until I began as Family Waiting Volunteer maybe 12 yr. ago, but we have become good friends. Actually, we = a Mutual Admiration Society, telling each other we don’t look our age. At 63, Diane no longer looks young enough to card.

    She had scads of surplus photos from the files, and gave me 5 that Elaine is in. One [b&w] = 9 women in uniform for some sort of skit/play/whatever. Military, Red Cross, this or that Armed Force, possibly Salvation Army. Only 3 of the 9, incl. Elaine, have no head covering. At least 3 in varied standard nurse’s caps, others military + Red C. The only one in color = Elaine alone, spiffy gray suit jacket w/ silver buttons, white turtleneck, white gloves, possibly captain’s bars, wh. purse w/ shoulder strap. Other 3 b&w: alone, w/ Sarah Palmer [ward clerk?], and some w/ tall guy, I think an MD, in civvies, Elaine in a trim white suit. Classy gal.

    Think I put away at least 30 fat grams from the spread. Light supper ahead: steamed veggies and a ‘small can of tuna,’ as Garrison and Jeannie Redpath sang in the one radio show of Prairie Home Companion that was televised 15+ yr. ago: “Tuna Casserole,” to the tune of “Whispering Hope.” Elaine and many [you could hear them realizing it in the audience] were busting a gut. I had maybe heard the tune once, but didn’t realize the gag until Elaine told me.

    Am guessing we’ll have a white yuletide. Unusually warm Nov., all snow completely melted 2x, but last week, lots of heavy snow, mid 20s-low 30s, and now single digits, maybe to –11 F at night, wind, drifts. [Our pastor] due back from vacation today, but won’t have to preach Sunday: annual children’s program, theme ‘the animals.’ Copy edited BUMC bulletin yesterday, made a decision or two for [pastor] in his absence. Nelly Borden, our new [and very good] sec’y / accountant, had trouble w/ a committee announcement, said to herself Evan will fix it, and I did. Told her she had a great future as a copy editor.
    I am surrounded by good people and grateful for that, esp. now.


  84. Charlotte/NH: Here I was, trying not to give away your age these past few years! When we made contact some time back, and being of genealogical bent, I looked you up on the ‘net. Thanks to google maps, I even had a nice view of your abode. You’ve got a few years on me, as I’m halfway between 76 & 77.

    Someone mentioned coldest temperatures experienced, a topic I believe we went through a few years ago. My coldest was -30F with a 30mph “zephyr” to drive it home. Traditional copper/zinc primates would not have been happy.

  85. GR6

    Keep up the traditions – it is what makes us a PEOPLE.

    Our tradition at holidays is a place set at table for all those that cannot be with us,
    whether because they stepped on the rainbow and gone before
    or because miles and commitments keep them from being able
    to sit with us.

    We also set a place for close family on their birthday, they are always with us in spirit.

  86. Bear, I’ve also followed that practice of setting an extra place at the table for holiday meals since my father passed away.

    Sweet Charlotte, 1930’s would have indeed been the time frame for my dad’s early years at home. And yes, they always had a decorated tree.

    The minus 64 degree temperature I experienced was at a location north of the Arctic Circle. Fortunately, when the ambient temp is that low, there is seldom any wind.

  87. Interesting tradition I had when my girls were small and when I taught Sunday school. Don’t be shocked! I celebrated the baby Jesus’ birthday with a cake, ribbons, presents and other things the very young could relate to. We’d talk about the Manger, angels, the Wise Men, their gifts, the shepherds gifts. And each child could choose a gift to give the child Jesus. It was at their comprehension level. We’d have the same celebration at our dining table for the girls and for Jesus on birthdays.

    We also did Advent calendars and Advent wreathed and candles, prayers, because we are Episcopalian. Daily until 12th Night. I hope they are doing that with Jack as they are Catholic.

  88. Just got my bed made at long last. I began this morning. I am ready to get in it. Left this afternoon to go get my hair done and pickup my prescription at Walmart I needed. Ended up in Muskogee buying all the toys for Jack my grandson in Quincy, IL for Christmas.

    Still have some of his school and dress clothes I bought earlier so I am thinking I will drive up there to drop them off. The pile is too big to ship. Santa will have to go in person after she wraps them. I really love him and miss him.

  89. eMb: Copper/zinc primates = brass monkeys [which presumably suffer from the cold].

    Jackie: Good ideas on that Sunday School material.
    Oh, you had asked earlier for comments on large bras. Cannot claim to be an expert, but I’d guess some padding in the large sizes is there to help maintain shape.

  90. Cep I was room mother for BOTH girls in different school classes at our Episcopalian private day school and Brownie Scout leader and taught Sunday school for young children. I have been on more field trips than one can imagine as each girl went there from pre-K through 9th grade. This takes more patience and character than one can imagine.

    One tradition we had was baking cut out sugar cookies and painting them with brushes and colored icing. Imagine five year Olds in a class of twenty cutting, baking and painting a fall leaf that was size of my hand to learn about how God created trees and leaves that miraculously changed colors each year.

    I usually managed to work some science, faith, conservation, tree planting and idea that colors in people could be equally different and beautiful. Oh and baking.

    Christmas was always about baking and sharing cookies and candies with others as well, giving away our baked goodies. I still try to do that.

  91. No traditions in our home growing up as both my Mom and Dad worked on Christmas and we grew up learning to catch Christmas when we could and more importantly, not complaining about it. We felt fortunate to receive whatever gifts that our parents could afford and all seven kids have grown old as responsible adults and a strong faith. I have seen family fireworks in other families and while we were not The Waltons, we all knew that we were loved by our family and our creator.

  92. Morphy, on writing: When I attempt to do serious writing, I try to be guided by the aphorism “Le mieux est l’ennemi du bien.” I just write it and then resist tinkering with it too much.

  93. Jackie, I actually have no problem believing you once taught a Sunday school class. However, I’m pretty sure I never had a Sunday school teacher like you. 🙂

  94. Sweet Charlotte, I forgot to mention that my grandparent’s Christmas trees were always cedars they harvested themselves from the “woods lot” back of their barn. My dad continued the tradition of cutting our trees until we moved out of state when I was fourteen. The four of us would go out on the afternoon of the first Sunday before Christmas to pick it out. Good times.

  95. I remember the cedars, pines and one year a giant holly tree from the woods on our farm.

    I need to get up and dressed. We are going to Tulsa and Gilcrease, hear Symphony players and go to Christmas parade.

  96. emb, thank you for the link to the tuna song. I had never heard that, though a fan of both Jean Redpath and Garrison Keillor. Keillor’s vocal range has always astounded me.

    Ghost, I’m happy to know it was the Arctic…that would have been my guess, perhaps involving the DEW line.

    Christmas traditions. Jackie’s mention of nativity sets brings to mind a small tradition of mine. Since childhood, putting up the manger set has been my responsibility. I have always put a sheep by baby Jesus’ feet, so that the sheep might breathe on Jesus’ toes and keep them warm.

  97. Nice touch, Li’l Smigz. Until a couple of years before her death, my mom would put up a rather elaborate ceramic “Christmas Village”, using buildings and accessories my sister and I had given her over the years.

  98. It had taken me a minute or two to realise that the reference to copper and zinc was not to blood chemistry, which was my first thought. Only when I thought of Google did I remember that copper and zinc alloys are called ‘brass.’

  99. The bankruptlicans have introduced a bill that will cut social security benefits by one third. I’m hoping that will be only for those that voted republican. Otherwise all of my investments will be in low income housing.

  100. My phenomenal lunch at Gilcrease Museum in Tulsa. They were out of the fried oysters with Ancho dressing.

    Had green tomato gazpacho, Johnny cakes with black beans and fresh salsa, frissee salad with grilled salmon. Window seats overlooking Osage hills. I am sitting in glass ballroom with panoramic views of more Osage Hills. Those oil barons knew how to buy a view, didn’t they?

    So peaceful, there is an enormous red haw covered in lush berries just below. I love coming here for Sunday brunch as well.

  101. GR6, solid advice. I phrased it differently for my son, “Aim for perfect, celebrate good enough.” Though it wasn’t writing in question, I’d hoped it was broad enough to carry over in life. Perhaps the emphasis is wrong.

    My writing skills have been a work in progress so long, they may be locked. But I keep trying. Thanks for the tip.

    On the Boise ATC, I guess bad paperwork isn’t the only standards falling. That’s just scary.

    I’ve known how FUBAR differs from SNAFU, and experienced a civilian version of BOHICA. You taught me a new-to-me version of BUFF, but fail at TOBSIH?

  102. Jackie, I wanted fried oysters recently, but the establishment’s bivalve mollusk locker was empty. So the next night, at another eatery, where I had planned to have a grilled tuna sandwich, I opted instead for an oyster po’ boy.

    Yeah, I know…if that’s the worst adversity I face this month, I’m golden.

  103. I noticed this afternoon that fireworks stands have popped up like winter mushrooms in this area the past week. ‘Cause nothing says “Happy Birthday, Baby Jesus” like loud splody noises, I guess.

  104. In my area fireworks are only permitted for a few days around Independence Day. NOLA has a reputation where I can see New Years celebrants wanting a bang.

    I wonder GR, will they sell all the way to Fat Tuesday?

  105. LoA2, yes on the Stratofortress. But until GR6 had used the reference here some time back, I only new buff as a color, or fit human, or nude. The Big Ugly FF was new to me then.

  106. Did you look at photos of what I ate instead of the oysters? They were on menu but out. I love oysters so long as cooked. Casimentos on Magazine is my personal favorite place.

    Out looking for Paw Patrol toys for Jack my grandson. I have been invited to go spend Christmas in Quincy with Jack, a precocious tiny Muppet who is four going on forty. He is a whiz at constructing complex creations from Legos and even more complex railroad lines with the trains grandmother has bought over years.

    Wish I had someone to ride along by way of St. Louis, a town I love with great restaurants and the most beautiful cathedral in America to attend services in with pipe organ and cantors. Jack lives in a three story home on historical registry and an entire sitting room full of Legos to build with.

  107. “…loud splody noises…”
    I like that one, Ghost. The Detroit Symphony Orchestra performs annually at an outdoor venue on July 4th; the concert ends with fireworks. I have fond memories of the year a man yelled during the pyrotechnics “More loud ones!yed

    Hi, Jerry!

  108. “Fire cracker stands” will be open from now through New Year’s Day and then disappear until the week before Independence Day. All the municipalities in the county ban their use, which slows but doesn’t stop it. They’re legal to sell and use in the county itself, although the Sheriff’s Department might have had something to say about that had the “burn ban” in effect for our drought conditions not been lifted last weekend.

    Some years ago, one of my all-female staff, a young single mom, had a stand she operated in the evenings after work. She said it was not hard work and there was a decent profit margin, at least at that time. Some of the present day “stands” are actually large tents, so that may still be the case.

    I don’t mind the fireworks, but I’m not crazy about the doofi in both cities and county that use their shootin’ irons as celebratory noisemakers and are apparently not aware that what goes up must come down.

    “Gravity…it’s not just a good idea, it’s the Law!”

  109. Jackie, your meal did look tasty. I enjoy gazpacho but have never had a green version of it. The Johnny cakes, like those made by my mom’s mom, reminded me of another of Nanny’s dishes…Hoppin’ John.

  110. The green version was better than red I think. First time I had it. Had a watermelon gazpacho a few years ago on cruise. I make red or yellow depending on tomato colors.

    I am wiped out from shopping for Paw Patrol toys, based on Nicklelodeon TV shows. A huge licensed character factory to produce expensive spinoff toys.

    Two years ago it was Chuggington ChooChoos which I bought every single train, track and village props. Then Thomas the Train and Aquanauts. He is madly into complex Lego construction, like a mad scientist.

    He is an only child and very smart. His gene pool was loaded for short, Petite and brains. He is a most fortunate child.

    Quincy, IL is a charming smallish town with four upscale groceries, lots of historic homes and buildings and some good places to eat. I have always enjoyed going there. Except Dickens keeps searching for my mom and Mike, who he expects to find upstairs. He breaks my heart.

  111. Going to see Scrooge in A Christmas Carol this afternoon. Eating brunch of corn chowder and mushroom, spinach, bacon and brie.

    Except for noisy large parties celebrating happily it is nice.

    Good morning to all and to all a good night.

  112. Bake sale at BUMC* today, ergo generous lowfat Jarlsberg cheese [a Swiss type domestic], grilled on somebody’s ‘Pilgrim’ bread for lunch, plus a score of red seedless grapes.

    Have not read the article below yet, so this time honestly [= not tongue in cheek this time], posted w/o comment.

    *Also, ~ thousands of churches nationwide, annual Christmas program. Well done.


  113. Stuck in Tulsa downtown as a toys for children biker run goes through. Missing my stage production as thousands zoom past. 45 minutes of them so far

  114. We usually have at least one spell of -30F weather every winter. It has been as low as -40F (or lower) a few times in the past couple of decades. Those are quite below the average. It is nice to have the option of working from home when it happens.

  115. Smigz, I feel for you with the dead snowblower. I haven’t tried to fire up mine yet. I need to do that before the first, heavy snow fall. My kids are outside right now assembling a shed to house the snowblower. I have lost count of the number of covers I have lost over the years.

  116. Just caught a few minutes, on television, of Steve Maher and friends having fun on some Utah mountains. Very pretty when you don’t have to shovel it.

  117. Turns out Tulsa has a professional acting group that puts on excellent theatrical performances. It is over 40 years old, the only one in Oklahoma.

    A Christmas Carol was excellent, great sets and costumes. Acting and voices were amazing. Same actor has played Scrooge for 28 years I believe.

    The things I have learned about Tulsa are wonderful and surprising. It would have been better if I had known all this many years ago, of course.

  118. Smigz, Smigz,
    Eating pasties. Would think them both tasteless and rather difficult to chew, not to mention all the ladies left without cover for their nipples.

  119. Sand that is what the miners ate, meat pies like the ones in Louisiana that are meat versions of fried pies. They make them in Michigan where they were Welch men who mined. Have onions and potatoes in them.

    Looking at online catalog for large breasted women, they had one truth in naming called watermelon.

  120. Honi soit qui mal y pense.

    Pasties, pron. ‘paahssties’ = meat + veggies + potatoes , seasoned, in a turnover, made by Welsh womenfolk for their miner husbands’ lunches. They can be good or less so. Best wife and I ever had were made by a student who lived w/ us for a year, ’85-’86, and was staying in Walker where she had a summer job, I believe with MDNR, in a spidery hovel with a slanting floor. Good cook, and we and later I have learned several times since. Lives in Mpls. now.


  121. And I meant to say Minnesota too. They are sometimes called hand pies. As a tourist I have eaten some godawful ones and also some delectable ones. The best were like really meaty pot pies but all in one folded over pie shell

    I have made these myself in past, they are the famous meat pies from Natchitoches, LA, the ones in the movie Steel Magnolias with Dolly Parton, Sally Fields, Julia Robert’s, Shirley McClain. They were selling them at Christmas festival.

    The best I ever made were shredded pot roast, chopped onions, minced potatoes and a ton of fresh mushrooms. The pie dough started with a stick of butter.

  122. I have a dozen large rectangular baskets of Oklahoma grown apples to make big Christmas bows to tie on handles. I have delivered four this week, these twelve go to another dozen small businesses and services who take care of me and my pets.

    In past I baked a lot. This year I am taking mixes, icing, cupcake papers, Christmas sprinkles, decors and cookie cutters, rolling pins, baking sheets, cooling racks. Jack my grandson likes to bake.

  123. Cute kid story. My grandson was given some homemade play dough which he rolled and cut out endlessly. My daughter threw it away finally.

    Next day she made colored cookie dough but told Jack it was play dough so he wouldn’t eat it. They baked, iced and decorated the “play dough” to give to neighbors. Jack earnestly warned the neighbors not to eat, they weren’t really cookies but play dough. LOL

  124. I have yet to prepare a dish that was not tasty when its recipe included “1 Stick of butter”.

    I’d like one day to try my luck making Jamaican Meat Pies, not withstanding my usual practice of avoiding recipes with >20 ingredients.

  125. Hello Mr. Ghost, if you have no better offer for Christmas, how about driving me to Illinois? Beautiful historic home with two good cooks and intelligent conversation. Even the other ghosts in the house are friendly and the town historic and charming. Just north of St. Louis so only marginally northern.

    Mark Twain lived right across Mississippi in Hannibal and we consider him southern.

  126. Twain lived on the ‘SE’ corner of 9th St. and 5th Ave. for a while, a 3-story bldg., perhaps still standing. Has a plaque at the top of the front stoop. Boy who eventually became my Cornell U. roommate [+ his Mom] lived in the main floor apt. Later, Ph.D. and MD, renal physiologist, died recently of kidney failure.

    Bemidji Chorale Christmas concert [Calvary LC] this afternoon and evening, dedicated to memory of a BSU prof. emerita, German/French, died recently after fighting breast ca. for 26 years. Wonderful person. I ate way too many seasonal bars at the gathering afterward, cornmeal mush + red seedless for supper [0 fat g.]. Bedtime, annual physical tomorrow. Damned lab first.


  127. About today’s free range joke. It is true. I had a friend who raised free range fryers. He used to bring me some. They do taste better and more chicken-you.

    Why is that?

  128. We had about 10″ of snow, but it was a “convenient” snow as it started on Sunday morning and was pretty much done about 9:00 pm last night. I had a function at church at 7:00 and the roads were in much better shape than I thought. Snow was packed down so starting and stopping was not easy.

    This morning I got out early to shovel, but the snow had stopped. Heard on the the radio that there was an accident on I-696, so I drove around it. No red lights and then about 50-60 MPH to work. Of course the first three in the office, including me, live the furthest away. I am guess that a 35 minute drive will last at least an hour tonight, although nearly all of the schools are closed, so traffic might be lighter.

  129. Good morning. Dickens and I are awake. First order of morning is to find a Diet Coke. Or go back to sleep.

    I have those apple baskets to deliver and a lot of cleaning to do.

  130. Gary, what province do you live in?

    Steve, yep, as heavy snows go, this was one of the better behaved ones. And no biting wind while shoveling and no drifting! Yay! I’m not far from you…husband measured and came up with eleven. Friends of ours up north would laugh at eleven inches of snow, but it’s enough for me right now.

    Jackie, I’m glad you made it for the performance. I was worried you’d miss at least the first act due to the charity run.

    sand, during a Michigan winter, those ladies better be wearing flannels, sweats, or sweaters! 😉

    emb, I have a niece that recently moved to Columbia, MO, and I’m looking forward to visiting all the Missouri Twain sites some day.

    Ruth Anne and Charlotte, I’d say I started something by mentioning pasties, but we’re always talking food and cooking!

  131. Did miss most of first act. But I am thinking of skipping some other event and going back your that to see entire musical. It was written including music by two Tulsans and staged and created here. Very well done. I love live theater.

    Go to Hannibal, Missouri but drive across river to Quincy, IL which is the preserved town of period as river port, several thousand buildings in historic district, over 400 on historic registry. My daughters house on Maine Street is one of earliest designated homes on preservation registry and she works with Quincy Preserves and loves to conduct tours.

  132. Per Wikipedia: “The U.S. Department of Agriculture Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) requires that chickens raised for their meat have access to the outside in order to receive the free-range certification. There is no requirement for access to pasture, and there may be access to only dirt or gravel.”

    Note that “access to the outside” does not mean the birds have to be allowed outside for any minimum period of time per day or that they will even take advance of such assess where it exists.

    Sincere question: So does Arlo’s chicken merely being labeled “free-range” really justify its greater cost or insure it is of higher quality? (I’ve never purchased one nor, as far as I know, eaten one.) Or is this just another “foodie fad”?

    There seems to be even more misinformation than usual on TDS today.

  133. My free range chickens are living in garden with grass inside a large dog kennel fence. They have a chicken she’d being built for added protection. They have hay piles to burrow in and dog kennels to sleep in with hay.

    So far no eggs but pretty chickens. They are pets and will not be eaten. Even if they don’t lay eggs.

    My freezer is full of fryers bought on last sale at grocery store, probably some Pilgrim ones from Beau.

    We are having chili and corn bread again for me and workmen. It is a chilly day.

    Do not ask my friends in North Carolina about keeping Kosher and paying $15 for a chicken to roast.

  134. Jackie, alpine sport and theatre season are two of the best things about winter. Well I guess you could throw in a bunch of indoor activities. I was just thinking the most thrilling. No, wait … [blush] never mind.

    As a child I thought chili was named for chilly days. Then I learned the awesome wonder of the chilé. Later came paprika. Tobacco and chocolate weren’t the only new world goodies. What Hungarians did with with the not so humble pepper is amazing.

  135. emb, “Because of Hal, apparentlou.”

    That was funny! And your next had me wondering if you found Groucho’s elephant in your pajamas?

    Enjoy the day.

  136. Old Bear, if I remember right, you work with small engine repair among your skills. I’ve heard several snow blower complaints in other places as well and wonder if you could say I’m off base?
    1-people keep a gas can on hand for their lawnmower
    2-it probably still has ‘summer gas’ in it
    3-putting ‘summer gas’ in a snow blower’s small engine works worse than summer gas in a car, in this cold weather.

    I’ve withheld advice to distant friends until I understood better.
    If I am confused with another villager, sorry.

  137. Better late than never – Happy, merry belated Symply!

    Skimmed past politics, saw a post about food, and just to make sure everyone gets distracted – where are our chili recipes?

    Debbe (and whoever else may need it) – Swing by when you can. If you need a (virtual) shoulder to lean on – we have your back. This time of year is rough on the emotions. Reach out if needed.

    On subject presented by our fearless leader: Never messed with fondue – melted wax and candles I’ll play with forever.

    Peace to all. More than ready for 2016 to be gone.

  138. Good evening all, I went in to take a bath and dress to go down town. Instead I lay down under comforters to finish drying off and just woke up! I confess to taking large amounts of Ghost’s evil drug benadryl but I have taken it all my life, thought I was immune to the affects.

    It is dark, town is closed. I am dressed and ready to deliver baskets in morning.

    I thought emb was funny about the evil Hal and his machinations.

  139. Turned on Pandora and Van Morrison came on playing Tupelo Honey. But because this is the Village my mind went to my favorite Carolina eatery named Tupelo Honey. Went to their website page and boy! Have they ever expanded! I ate in the one in Ashville which is apparently the mother ship.

    First time I had eaten a pimento and cheese sandwich grilled with sliced tomatoes. Their food is divine, local sources, often changing. I confess I knew they were there, had read about them in Southern Living magazine.

    If you are ever near make an effort to eat in one. Otherwise just read the menu.

  140. I skimmed backwards a way and found nothing political so, to correct that oversight-this morning’s headline-“Trump rejects intelligence”. There may be hope for newspapers after all.

  141. Sir Van Morrison, who was a handsome young stud at the height of his popularity is now a really ugly old man in current photos. He can still sing, as he is still recording and touring.

    That is as sad as me finding most of my old boy friends are old, over weight, balding and/or dead and buried. Why are people my age so much older than I?

  142. Jerry, any collapsing beach chair stories?

    Jackie, after following tales of your travels, maybe aging comes from sitting still?

    Come to think of it, Einstein’s relativity says time slows the faster you move. I had no idea results were possible right here on Earth.

  143. My cardiologist is a fan of mine or me. He says I get younger and better looking every time he sees me. In fact, most of my physicians say the same, that I am the patient who found the fountain. I am their exception.

    Right now am making an apple cobbler, peeling basket of apples. Tony and Truly finished cleaning freezer and found blackberries and peaches to make cobblers. I said I needed to make cobblers, they agreed. So I am.

  144. Jackie, I appreciate the invite to go to Quincy with you. Sounds like a great trip. Unfortunately, I have a commitment for Christmas. More (possibly) about that later.

    Some years ago, returning from a hotshot flight, I passed over Hannibal MO on the RFD-MEM leg. Since I was VFR, I dropped down to about 2000 feet and took an aerial sightseeing tour of the town.

    Your recent posts about Southern Living caused me to subscribe to the magazine again, for the recipes and food info. Perhaps appropriately, the first page I opened it up to had an advert featuring a mid-thigh-and-upward-length photo of Julia Roberts, who certainly looks good enough to eat. 😉

  145. Mindy from Indy, I totally understand your sentiment and I am sure that there are many who agree with you, but I remember saying something like that and a former friend told me “You don’t literally mean than, Life is too precious” As soon as he said that, the anxiety that I had was lifted and I realized that he was so very right.

    A lot of people here and across America have been saddened during 2016. For everything there is a season. But when we change our clocks back in the fall, I always tell people that I would rather turn them back to 1984, when my dear Mom was still alive. But I’m reminded of her sense of humor, zest for life and her love and protectiveness as a mother. And I realize that I can honor her legacy by trying to be more like her. That makes me feel just a bit better and Mom is with me.

    Time heals and it’s OK to feel sad.. May the Peace of Christ be with you and with all of you here at A&

  146. Jackie, I had been. I and mine missed Friday night movies, so we had recorded some Myrna Loy. TCM has her as Star of the Month. So we uncorked a bottle and watched The Prizefighter and the Lady, I think is right. I have always enjoyed her work opposite William Powell. The banter and natural timing was so unusual in the early 30’s film acting, I was never sure if it was all Myrna or relied on the pairing with Bill. This film showed me it is indeed Myrna’s talent that made it work so well.

    Do you serve your cobbler by itself, or with ice cream? Maybe just a coffee alongside.

  147. Hi, Jackie. I’ve just been catching up after several days away, and I need to head for bed soon, but I didn’t like you feeling lonely, cold, and empty. Not good. This has been a crazy week with all the usual stuff plus Saturday night was our annual church concert with chancel choir, orchestra, handbell choir, praise team, children’s choir, youth choir, and women’s ensemble. Yikes! I was subbing for handbells, and Jim and I both sing in the choir. Tuesday night was handbell rehearsal, Wed was choir practice, Thursday dress rehearsal, Saturday concert, and Sunday morning church with both handbells and choir again, different pieces. Lots of wonderful music, a wonderful gift to those of us who made it and, we trust, to those who heard it.

  148. Nancy, I am still awake, so thank you. You too Morphy. I feel very alone at times. Tonight is one of them. On a positive note I am caught up with laundry if not putting it away.

    On a somewhat humorous note, I made the observation that losing weight to point of being skinny doesn’t necessarily make you attractive, just skinny. Nor does it make you a nicer or more loveable person if you were not so before. I am not commenting on myself of course but someone else who has lost huge amount of weight in short time.

  149. Hi, Mindy! I’ve been imagining you cuddled up with the cats and some winter reading.

    Jerry, you’re starting my day with a laugh!

    sand, that was a fascinating article on emojis. I’m glad I’m not the only one for whom they hold some ambiguity.

    Sometimes when the Village Square is empty, I imagine looking around at the lighted windows of everyone’s homes. “There’s Jackie’s house. I bet Dickens is curled up by her feet.” “I wonder if sand and Loon are home or off somewhere.” “Is that a strain of Gilbert and Sullivan coming from emb’s house?” “Jimmy has one window lit…could that be his studio?”

    Morphy, have you seen the 1991 retrospective about Loy’s career, “So Nice to Come Home To”? TCM runs it from time to time, and it’s well worth watching. I see it’s also posted on YouTube.

  150. Good morning. Dickens is fiercely barking. I think at garbage truck.

    Just thought about fact Dickens came into my life at Christmas eve which is why his name. I loved Charles Dickens when I was a little girl.

    Lost my mother Christmas week and Mike on Christmas eve. Had not put finding Dickens on same day seven years ago together but he has been my love and comfort these last two years. A tiny bundle of love, heart, bravery and fur.

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