Monday, December 17, 2012

Merry Christmas

The person making my drinks tonight (me) needs to calm the fuck down and not make them so strong. Just because it is the end of the bottle does NOT mean you have to just finish it off. That is the opposite of what that means. It means make two weak drinks, not one really, really strong one. That was sort of just a letter to self. Possibly a warning to all of you.

So...the holidays. The holidays are always weird for me. I don't like them. I love Thanksgiving because my dad's whole side of the family comes in town and it is just this great weekend of catching up. Not so much this year. Which I understand. I so understand. There are babies and new wives and new families and I get it. But I was still sad. I missed that family time. 

Christmas is always about me going to St Louis before and hanging out with the family. All of my aunts come into town and we spend the weekend fighting and talking over each other and just generally being a room full of strong women who can't figure out whose turn it is to talk. Not this year. Which I don't understand as much...but still get. It's hard to travel from Texas to Missouri. It's a long trip. 

I am trying very hard to be forgiving of the total absence of family this year. Because, honestly, I am not mad at them. Not even a little. I am just sad that I don't get to see all of them. I am sad that the one time of the year that is supposed to be all about family isn't this year. I am still going home to St Louis and I will still get to see my sister and grandmother and mother and stepfather (and Bradshaw and her new boy!) 

I have to close the restaurant on Christmas Eve. Christmas morning I am making breakfast casseroles for a homeless shelter and going there to serve them Christmas brunch. Christmas night we are doing a traditional dinner at my dad and stepmom's house. Our tradition for years has been going out to dinner Christmas Eve, doing Christmas day at my house and then going to our favorite bar for bingo and friends. 

Everyone should spend Christmas Day at a bar. Playing bingo. It sounds kind of sad, but it is awesome.

It's not that I don't like change. I actually really like change. I like to mix it up a little. I just miss the family this year. I miss seeing the twins and my cousins and my aunts and my uncles and everyone. 

But! BUT! I get to go to St Louis and take FIVE WHOLE DAYS OFF OF WORK. And I get to relax and spend some time with the family that is there. And I get to spend Christmas Day doing something fulfilling and then having a lovely evening with my dad and stepmom. 

I need to un-bah humbug myself and just get the fuck over it. I know. But, I am pouty and stompy about the whole thing. I will get over it. 

I hope all of you have a great holiday, whatever it is you are celebrating. I may be MIA until after Christmas unless I randomly cell phone post from home. Be safe. I love you all.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Remove Head from Ass and Proceed

I have gone back and forth about writing about the tragedy that happened on Friday. I never shy away from a conflict, I suppose, so here goes.

Everyone can agree on one thing; this was a senseless tragedy that could have been prevented. The reason that it could have been prevented is where everyone seems to disagree, including me and the boy. 

I think that this country has reached a point of sensitivity to a fault. Am I proposing that we all go back to being racist, sexist ass holes? No. No I am not. But, I think that we have become so sensitive that we are scared of rocking the boat. We are scared to say, hey, there is something the fuck wrong with that kid and someone needs to address it. Because that is bullying. That is picking on that kid. That is mean. And then that kid kills 27 people. 

As a country, we have become so politically correct we are not addressing major issues in our society. We are instead avoiding them. We absolutely need to love our fellow man. I truly believe that. And part of that is calling our fellow man out on their shit. I don't know if this kid exhibited any kind of mental illness prior to shooting up the school. But I can guarantee you that there is someone out there who sensed something was off. Somebody knew.

So, yes, lets address mental illness. Let's stop being scared to talk about it and just talk about it. Because it is real and it happens and sometimes it ends in the death of a lot of innocent people. Sometimes it ends in suicide. Regardless, it never ends in a pile of rainbows and unicorns. Let's start talking about it in a very real way. 

On the flip side of that, there is the media. Absolutely there were not people shooting up schools when my parents were kids. I was a senior in high school when Columbine happened and our school was locked the fuck down. Metal detectors were installed. You couldn't blink without somebody looking at you funny. It was a terrifying time. You know what else it was? A media sensation. Those boys were all over every single form of media all over the world. They were famous. To an extent, it was glamorized. I have no idea who the victims were in that shooting. But I sure as shit remember the names of the two kids who shot up that school.

People were angry that traumatized kids were being interviewed and I agree with that too. The media definitely needs to cover it. But, people with mental illness to this degree want the fame. They want to be plastered all over every newspaper and TV show. We have to figure out a way to make this about the victims, not their killers.

Lastly, and most controversial, I believe that gun control is a big part of the problem. Nobody, and I mean nobody, should be allowed an automatic weapon in their home. I even take issue with semi-automatic. I am not going to fight with anybody about this because I understand that everybody has their own rights to their own beliefs, just like I do. But, if you feel the need to have an automatic weapon in your home for your own protection, you are fooling yourself. Those guns are meant to kill. And I take issue with anybody owning anything for the sole purpose of using it to kill another human being. 

As a country, let's hug our kids and be grateful for what we have. But, let's also get our heads out of our self important asses and make sure shit like this doesn't happen again. 

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Can Challenge

The boy and I were watching The Next Iron Chef: Redemption and it was the episode with the can challenge...every contestant got a can they had to elevate into a great dish. Through all cooking shows, I am yelling at the TV about the mistakes they are making, bad dish choices, etc. In this particular challenge, I was telling the boy what I would make with each can of food. So, he challenged me to put my money where my mouth was. He went to the grocery store and bought a can of food, took off the label, and tonight I cooked dinner with it. 

The rules were:

  1. Once I looked at the label, I had an hour and a half to go to the grocery store and cook the meal.
  2. I couldn't spend more than $25.
  3. I would be "graded" on a 100 point scale, 25 for time, 25 for cost, 45 for taste, and 5 for the use of cheese. Clearly I did not make the scale.
This was our trial run. We plan on inviting people over for future ones and maybe collaborating with other people. It doesn't always have to be a can, just a secret ingredient challenge. And honestly, it was a lot of fun doing it just by myself.

The boy documented the process in photos:

Can you figure out what it is?

Corned Beef Hash! 

So, I made a corned beef hash cake with onion, garlic and mustard and I served it with pan seared pork, cider braised cabbage, and a roasted apple bourbon sauce. was one of the best meals I have made in a long time. The boy gave it a 95 (due to lack of cheese) and said it was excellent. Now, most of you probably hear things like, oh, honey, this dinner is great from your significant others. The most I ever get is "it's allright." So, an excellent is a pretty big compliment around here.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Another Christmas first

Not sure why I am obsessively iPhone posting tonight, but couldn't resist a picture of the cat's first Christmas tree. I love how he looks like he is in awe. In reality, I caught the one second he wasn't chewing on the tree.

First Christmas

First Christmas tree in the new house! I am feeling less and less bah humbug by the day.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Looking in a mirror.

Two things you need to know in order for this story to make sense:

Monday nights I always work a double since it is our mid shift guys day off,  therefore allowing me to leave work late enough that the happy hour patrons are tipsy.

Our restaurant is right next to a gay bar.

So, I am walking out of work tonight, enjoying the lovely 70 degree weather (what the what????) and I see a guy kind of half stumble half walk out of the bar. This is an extremely normal thing and if there is one universal truth in this world it is that the gays LOVE me. I have over 10 facebook friends that are random gay people I have met once and become instant best friends with. I am not worried about this guy at all. We are standing at the cross walk and I hear him mutter something about the crosswalk and can he jay walk and is sort of having an entire conversation about the crosswalk with me?

Only he wasn't talking to me because I am not sure he even knew I was there. I was standing a good three feet behind him and at an angle where he would have to turn around to see me. There certainly wasn't any eye contact. 

The little walk guy comes on and he starts crossing the street and says aha! I could have gone or something along those lines. Only this time he isn't muttering. He sort of shouted it. He gets into the first car and I am at the back of the lot. He shuts his door and I say, out loud, "Crazy Mother Fucker. Who was he talking to." I did not see the bartender and kind of friend of mine across the parking lot who then replies. "Who are YOU talking to?"

Well, shit. I start laughing and we shoot the shit for a while and I get in my car and say, out loud again, "Is that how the rest of the world sees me? It is isn't it. Oh God. I look like a crazy person."

I then tweeted about it and apologized to the world on my behalf. Because holy shit, I am a crazy person.

Not as crazy as the homeless lady that stands in the middle of the street and screams at cars not to hit her. Yet.