Category Archives: Entertained

I’m Hangry. Please Don’t Jack Around

WARNING:  I’m a big fan of foul language. The following post includes a pinch of spicy and green leafy cuss words. Please avoid this article if you have delicate sensibilities.recipes1

 

Dear Foodie Blogger,

For the love of God, please choose  – preferably in the advanced planning stages before launching your wonderful new blog, whether you are a storyteller, photographer, or, and this is a big one…a fucking cook.  Because here’s the thing:  YOUR BLOG CAN’T BE ALL THREE.  At least not very well.  And definitely not if you want me to subscribe and tell all my friends about it.

I get it.  I know what you are trying to do.  I’ve seen it done well but not often, and not unless you can legitimately add graphic artist to your resume and know how to skillfully design a page with photos of sumptuous food logically arranged around the ACTUAL RECIPE IN A READABLE FORMAT. That’s a lot of work for the average Foodie blogger.  Try not to get too fancy about it.  If you don’t pay a large staff to do everything except the cooking, just post the recipe with a few photos of the finished product. Really. That’s all you need. If you absolutely must write a 17-paragraph narrative about the recipe, maybe do it after you’ve posted the ingredients and cooking directions.  A couple of people will be interested.  Not me but maybe some others.

I love and enjoy each of these specific blog genres  – storytelling, photography and cooking –  but when combing them, if they each carry equal weight, what you end up with is a blog that is, at first glance, big and beautiful and envy-inducing, “Oh my God I wish my hot dogs looked this pretty!”  On further inspection, however,  when I’m trying to find the actual recipe, if the blog becomes complicated and confusing because I’m spending way too many of my expensive minutes searching and scrolling and clicking and pressing arrows to find the F&(*ing  ingredients or oven temp, you’ve lost me in a mad fury.

 

Yum

Bologna sandwich with huge tomato slice. Easy.

The photos may be stunning, the narrative captivating and the actual recipe may be to die for – but I’ll never know. And just so you know, right before I slam my cursor on the X at the top right side of your page, I’ve uttered several violent missives directly at you. Personally. Likely something uncouth about your waste management apparatus. I’m hateful like that.

If your blog is a slice-of-life narrative about how you’ve gotten healthy and trim following a certain eating plan, I’ll follow along because I love stories of success and personal victory.  I love seeing the before and after photos and I’m inspired to try your plan  with you and encourage you along the way.  But that’s different. I only read those blogs when I’m already too full and disgusted with my piggish self. When I’m hungry I don’t care how fat I am.  That’s the point.

If I’m looking for a recipe, bets are, I’m hungry, I’m in a hurry, I have a slab of thawed meat I don’t know what to do with, and likely several people standing around asking me what we (translate: me) are doing about dinner.  If all of these elements happen to be in place at the same time, which they so often are, I may also be approaching homicidal. Now is not the time for me to read about your personal relationship with lean, non-GMO, organic, grass-feed, free-range pork steak. Your farm-to-table adventures hold no sway with me. I especially don’t give any effs about how you filched the recipe from your husband’s mother after she accidentally ate a magic brownie in the backseat of a yellow Volkswagen in 1973.  I swear I don’t. That story is only interesting to you and your siblings.  And maybe your children if they’re old enough to be told about the ‘70s.

If I have to click more than once to get to the actual directions on how to make the recipe—I’m gone. Tempted to do a slideshow style recipe?  Lose my number. I’ll never be back.

Seriously?

Seriously?

Generally speaking, and I’m guessing I’m in the majority here, when I’m looking for a specific kind of food or recipe, I Google it.  I need directions for an interesting way to make something to eat. Something different for a change.  I’m looking for an easy-to-read list of ingredients and directly below/beside that list- the actual directions to mix it all up and cook it.  I don’t want editorial comments after each ingredient. I know cumin is spicy.  I’ll cut it back if I’m feeding kids or sissies. I know cilantro is pungent. You don’t need to warn me that if I don’t like it I should use less.  Let’s assume here that I have at least an iota of cooking experience.  I know where the kitchen is. I know how to turn on the stove. Trust me.  Also, if you must tell me in the list of supplies needed section that I should use a clean cutting board (as opposed to…. what?  A dirty one?), you’ve misunderestimated me. I can’t like you at all and maybe forever if you say something like that. If I’m smart enough to find your blog, you must trust me as a reader.  I know about Hepatitis.  I was in the army.

I love a good story.  I’m a huge fan of photography blogs.  I’m always searching for good recipes.  I never combine these activities. I don’t have time.  Here’s a news flash: NOBODY HAS TIME.

I block out daily reading times and (too) often, I allow myself some (precious) online minutes to admire the interesting collections of art and photos on various blogs, including food blogs. But not when I’m hungry.  When it’s dinner time, I’m looking for food ideas.   I want the deets, the 411, the goddamned ingredients. I don’t want the history of Turmeric and beet juice in America. I also don’t’ want to do an additional search to find out how many shrimps make up eight ounces or what size package of meat makes up “28 ounces of pork roast” (1.75#s, FYI).  For God’s sake.  That’s just cruel. Please. Be merciful. One more thing here while we’re discussing mercy: any recipe that calls for “X amount of cups plus 1/2 teaspoon” is just showing off. Just trying to make the author look like some kind of fancy chef. I mean really.  That extra 1/2 teaspoon is more or less a few pinches. Everybody knows that. Don’t be fancy. You lose credibility.

 

The big payoff in being a considerate Foodie Blogger is that if I like the recipes I’ll be back for more.  I’ll subscribe.  I’ll re-blog.  I’ll spread the word like a cupful of softened butter. I’ll tolerate the annoying ads because I get how that works and I appreciate what you are doing.  I’ll even click the ads if they interest me because again, I get it. I do draw the line though with auto-play video ads.  I’ll only stick around long enough to damn you to hell before I click the X and be gone from your site. Forever. Have some respect. Or, lose me. Either way. Plenty of Sushi in the sea. I don’t need a science lesson or a fun story on how you learned to properly boil water.  I need dinner.

Meh... not bad.

So-so Mexican food from a local place. For when Google is down.

My one and only Foodie Post:

Best Black Bean Soup

I’ve never done a foodie post and I may not do another one. This one, half-assed at best, I only thought of while I was making my favorite black bean soup. So, bear with me while I try something completely new. The post, that is. The soup I make fairly often.  Read Article

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TBT: Swimming With The Fishes

I haven’t written anything I can publish for public consumption lately but I came across a photo I promised to share with Sir Ozzy a long time ago.

It’s a photo of me fishing with my Uncle Joe a thousand years ago in the Florida Keys.  Joe was my dad’s brother, the two of them formidable members of the Fighting Bell Boys and along with the third member of this obscure but infamous trio, is retired to the great beyond. At least two of the Fighting Bell Boys are remembered with some measure of fondness.  My father isn’t one of those.

The boat was rumored to be owned by Jimmy Hoffa (uncle Joe had connections, he told me).  I ate a  raw shrimp on a dare that day.  All sailors eat raw shrimp, the fishermen told me. Looking back I realize it was just another cruel joke I fell for in my youth – never one to pass up a challenge of my grit and determination to fit in… somewhere.

I don’t have bad memories of this particular trip – it’s all part of the strange texture of my life.

fishing1

Be sure to check out Sir Ozzy’s blog for fun stories about his travels.

**I forgot to add that I caught several of those fish on the table there.  My stomach was black and blue the  next day from the fishing pole.**

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Nursing. It’s for Other People

shotI wrote this short piece for my blogroll blog and I don’t have many followers over there so I thought I’d drop a link here to share a quick story.  Also there is a link to one of my favorite bloggers (nutsrok).

 

 

I encouraged and consoled and used my best confidence-building pep talks during these calls but I worried.  I was out of my league. I could no more be a nurse than fly to the moon.  I lack empathy.  Continue…

 

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“Other” Lane Discovered in Leavenworth County

 

screamerLeavenworth County, Kan. –Reports early Saturday afternoon indicate unusual behavior for drivers headed south on Kan. Highway 7, just outside of Lansing, Kansas.  Several witnesses called the station with similar reports of Leavenworth County (LvCo) drivers operating vehicles while in the right-hand lane as they traveled south on the highway.

One witness said she saw several southbound LvCo drivers gripping the steering wheel, “…(they were) white-knuckled, with expressions of abject terror on their faces.  A passenger in one car had her eyes covered with her hands and appeared to be screaming,” the witness said.  “I’ve never in my life seen a driver from Leavenworth County driving in the right-hand lane.  It was terrifying.”

Another witness reported that at least one driver in the left lane was gesturing wildly to the drivers in the right lane to get back over to the “normal” driving lane. The driver was screaming, “What are you doing over there?” the witness said.

The station sent teams of reporters to the surrounding area to investigate the unusual event and eventually revealed that a possible rumor originating at the IHOP in Leavenworth, Kan. may have caused the chaos on K-7 Highway. Diners at the restaurant apparently overheard an out-of-towner describe K-7 as a “four-lane highway,” suggesting an additional lane going in both directions on the south and northbound highway.

Several LvCo residents left their partially eaten lunches behind in the booths as they rushed out to the parking lot to get to their vehicles, according to John Smith, the restaurant manager. “They were all very curious to see if there really is another lane on the right side of K-7. I personally can’t imagine believing in that ‘other’ lane,” Smith said.  “I wonder if they also believe in Santa Claus. They must feel like big stupid fools.”

“Those dummies are in for a shock.  I hope they at least come back later and pay for their damn lunches,” an IHOP waitress remarked.

One diner in the restaurant, a resident of Wyandotte County, expressed disbelief about the event. “It’s like they don’t realize that there is a left lane to be used for passing and turning while the right lane is used for cruising.  I mean, highways are designed like that  all over the country and these people have never noticed that there is another lane on the highway. I’ve never seen anything like it,” he said.

A few of the right-lane drivers returned to the restaurant later in the day to finish lunch and pay for their meals.  By some accounts the drivers appeared to be in something of a daze and at least two drivers were admitted to St. John’s emergency room where they were treated for extreme anxiety.

Reporters asked the LvCo police officer stationed at the entrance to the Wildwoods Mobile Home Park in Lansing, Kan., to shed some light on the brief and apparently horrifying phenomenon.  “I’m not sure what just happened,” officer Speedick said.  “I had almost met my afternoon quota of 49 speeding tickets when all of a sudden I noticed several drivers in another lane–over to the right of the left lane. Like, I mean, they were just driving along in that ‘other’ lane. I haven’t had any training on LvCo drivers who don’t use the left lane for regular driving. My mind is kind of blown here.  I’ll be glad when my shift is over.”

Two reporters remained on the scene for several hours to see if any other Leavenworth County drivers had heard the rumor about the “other” lane but there is no evidence that the rumor spread any further.  All indications are that highway traffic is back to normal on K-7 southbound. The “other” lane is being investigated by local FBI agents.  Check back here for updates to the story.

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Local News on Social Media: Big Fail

I watched a local news program this morning.  The news actors reminded viewers to ‘like and follow’ them on social media sites because watching them on television is not painful enough.   Plus, following them on Facebook and Twitter guarantees viewers won’t miss a single glimpse into the clever personalities they have worked so hard to create for us.

To make the news feeds even more fun, social media news managers occasionally add yummy recipes and tidbits on how to properly raise kids or how to stay warm when it’s cold outside. I mean these people are just downright essential to fans all over the metro area. I’m not sure how I even function without them.  Local news is not just the news anymore.

About the time I posted this piece last year is when I stopped following my local news stations on social media. I don’t have the self-control to avoid making snarky comments for which I am violently thrashed and beaten nearly to death by fans of the station.  It’s not that I care much what the rocket scientists news fans think of me personally but it is a nuisance to wake up in the morning with 57 notifications–52 of which are hate-filled comments about my remark.  Several of the comments come from the news actors themselves demanding to know my qualifications for not liking them.   As my friends in Texas say, the juice just ain’t worth the squeeze anymore.

BREAKING NEWS:

KCTV666: Grab a tissue readers because this next story is relly, relly sad. A real tragedy. Okay, so a guy was walking down a street in the metro and he did something relly mean to another guy walking on the same street. Cops were called and we are waiting for more details. I’ve been crying all day!! Should people be allowed to be relly mean to others on the same street? Keep the comments nice please!

42,000 likes 18,000 shares

Continue reading

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Nursing: A free Pass to Heaven

20150518_194319To honor Beth for her words of wisdom and her funny stories, I’m posting a recent text I received.  It may only be funny  to nurses.   Continue

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Me, Me, Me. A Verbal Selfie

Writers, from all accounts that I’ve found, are often stumped about what to write on their blogs. There’s no shortage of blogging going on in the universe, that’s for sure, but writers generally have a specific kind of writing they want to do.

Some bloggers offer helpful hints and inspiration. Tons of bloggers, certainly some of my favorites, share recipes and cooking tips. Some tell funny stories. Some are funnier than others. Some can barely spell but they have something important to say and they manage to get it out there on that massive information highway. Wordes, wrds, words. It’s all good, as my kids used to say.

Lots and lots of bloggers reveal personal information about their lives, their romantic breakups, their pets. They write touching stories about their children or parents or fighting their way back from illness or some other kind of challenge. These aren’t all writers, necessarily, but they’re bloggers. They want to share something with the world. A piece of themselves.

Then there are bloggers who write about blogging. It’s a business for some folks. I haven’t figured out how they make money at it, at least not on WordPress but a few of them are hugely successful at it.

My favorite bloggers are those who are able to bring together elements from each category and draw me in with compelling ideas and fascinating perspectives about their lives—or about all life.

I recently started this networking blog, separate from my writing blog and I commented to a fellow blogger that I wasn’t sure what to write about on it. His answer resonated with me:

Write your world for us. No one sees it like you do 🙂

And, he’s right. I’m sure I’d be locked up for a long time if anybody knew what really goes on in my head. My kids have told me for years what a weirdo I am. I’m okay with that. I like my life. While I spend most of my time alone, I’m not a hermit or a recluse and I don’t have phobias and I’m not anti-people. Necessarily.

I love people. In fact, I don’t know anybody else who loves people like I do. I love deeply and usually forever, I’m just not needy about it. I even love people who don’t love me back. Sure, there are plenty of folks in my life that I don’t love and I even have strong feelings of dislike with regard to a few people. I’d still put them out if they were on fire.

Whaaaattt???

I am what I am ..

That’s not to say I am some kind of Pollyanna because I’m certainly not. One of my

husband’s cousins once called a me sailor and at first it so enraged me that I thought for a minute that I wouldn’t put him out if he were on fire. I calmed down and accepted that that’s just how he sees me and I supposed that there must be a reason he sees me that like that. Either way. It’s all good.

So, taking the advice of my blogger friend I’ve decided to share a kind of day in the life of story about myself. Me, me, me. It’s like a verbal selfie. It is, more accurately, only a few minutes in the life of story. My actual days go on and on sometimes. It might be best described as an expose of my boomer vanity. A split-second snapshot of my own private insanity. I should probably be embarrassed but I’m not. Maybe it will resonate with other readers and writers who mostly love people and definitely love life. If it’s not well-received, I’m okay with that too. This is my life. I like it a lot.

It might help to read my short introduction, Another Introduction to understand that I’m old but I’m not a grey-haired old granny. I don’t want to be young again but I miss certain parts of my youth. Looking younger would be nice. I only worry about it in short snippets though, because again, I’m vain, but I’m happy.

For a peek inside 30 minutes of my day, take a look.

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Another Introduction

I find it impossible to introduce myself in writing to strangers, telling them a little bit about me in a way that helps them understand who I am. I worry about the  image my self-description creates.

WTF?

I’m certainly not a gray-haired granny knitting booties from a rocker but I do have nine grandchildren. I don’t knit, though. I try it every couple of years. My fingers are too fat. The work is mindless. The instructions are the stuff of metaphysical science and I can’t understand them.

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Throwback Friday: Nothing Much has Changed

Just don't

Just don’t

I stumbled on this old blog post from a few years ago and it reminded me of when I first figured out what WP Award Memes are all about.  It marks the beginning and the end of my interest in them.

I decided to repost it because the memory made me smile.  Thinking back on my poor, frustrated husband, his constant confusion about what drives me and makes me tick has morphed into a kind of disgusted acceptance.  Continue reading

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Local News on Social Media: Big Fail

BREAKING NEWS:

KCTV666: Grab a tissue readers because this next story is relly, relly sad. A real tragedy. Okay, so a guy was walking down a street in the metro and he did something relly mean to another guy walking on the same street. Cops were called and we are waiting for more details. I’ve been crying all day!! Should people be allowed to be relly mean to others on the same street? Keep the comments nice please!

42,000 likes 18,000 shares
Continue reading

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