Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Giving Thanks

It's a couple of days early, but today, I'd like to give thanks that no-one in my family would ever send out a letter like this:
From: Marney

As you all know a fabulous Thanksgiving Dinner does not make itself. I need to ask each of you to help by bringing something to complete the meal. I truly appreciate your offers to assist with the meal preparation.

Now, while I do have quite a sense of humor and joke around all the time, I COULD NOT BE MORE SERIOUS when I am providing you with your Thanksgiving instructions and orders. I am very particular, so please perform your task EXACTLY as I have requested and read your portion very carefully. If I ask you to bring your offering in a container that has a lid, bring your offering in a container WITH A LID, NOT ALUMINUM FOIL! If I ask you to bring a serving spoon for your dish, BRING A SERVING SPOON, NOT A SOUP SPOON! And please do not forget anything.

All food that is to be cooked should already be prepared, bring it hot and ready to serve, warm or room temp. These are your ONLY THREE options. Anything meant to be served cold should, of course, already be cold.

HJB—Dinner wine

The Mike Byron Family
1. Turnips in a casserole with a lid and a serving spoon. Please do not fill the casserole all the way up to the top, it gets too messy. I know this may come as a bit of a surprise to you, but most of us hate turnips so don't feel like you a have to feed an army.
2. Two half gallons of ice cream, one must be VANILLA, I don't care what the other one is. No store brands please. I did see an ad this morning for Hagan Daz Peppermint Bark Ice Cream, yum!! (no pressure here, though).
3. Toppings for the ice cream.
4. A case of bottled water, NOT gallons, any brand is ok.

The Bob Byron Family
1. Green beans or asparagus (not both) in a casserole with a lid and a serving spoon. If you are making the green beans, please prepare FOUR pounds, if you are making asparagus please prepare FIVE pounds. It is up to you how you wish to prepare them, no soupy sauces, no cheese (you know how Mike is), a light sprinkling of toasted nuts, or pancetta, or some EVOO would be a nice way to jazz them up.
2. A case of beer of your choice (I have Coors Light and Corona) or a bottle of clos du bois chardonnay (you will have to let me know which you will bring prior to 11/22).

The Lisa Byron Chesterford Family
1. Lisa as a married woman you are now required to contribute at the adult level. You can bring an hors d’ouvres. A few helpful hints/suggestions. Keep it very light, and non-filling, NO COCKTAIL SAUCE, no beans of any kind. I think your best bet would be a platter of fresh veggies and dip. Not a huge platter mind you (i.e., not the plastic platter from the supermarket).

The Michelle Bobble Family
1. Stuffing in a casserole with a serving spoon. Please make the stuffing sans meat.
2. 2.5-3 qts. of mashed squash in a casserole with a lid and serving spoon
3. Proscuitto pin wheel - please stick to the recipe, no need to bring a plate.
4. A pie knife

The June Davis Family
1. 15 LBS of mashed potatoes in a casserole with a serving spoon. Please do not use the over-size blue serving dish you used last year. Because you are making such a large batch you can do one of two things: put half the mash in a regulation size casserole with lid and put the other half in a plastic container and we can just replenish with that or use two regulation size casserole dishes with lids. Only one serving spoon is needed.
2. A bottle of clos du bois chardonnay

The Amy Misto Family (why do I even bother she will never read this)
1. A pumpkin pie in a pie dish (please use my silver palate recipe) no knife needed.
2. An apple pie in a pie dish, you can use your own recipe, no knife needed.

Looking forward to the 28th!!

Apparently it's a real letter.  I first saw it here (on Awkward Family Photos), which is also where I saw this photo of Anne Shirley's dream wedding gown.  (That is the upper limit on sleeve puffiness.  Any puffier than that and the weight of the fabric causes catastrophic puff failure and eventual collapse.  Ok, not really.  I know nothing about wedding dress construction, and I imagine it is in fact possible to create puffier sleeves... but why would you ever want to?)

P.S. to my family:  As a married woman, I feel I ought to be contributing at the adult level.  Just tell me what to bring.  And how many pounds to make.  And what recipe I should use.   And what dish (lidded? not lidded? For Heaven's sake, TELL ME!!) to bring it in.  And how many serving spoons are needed.  Also: will a little EVOO be required to jazz up my dish?  If I bring green beans and asparagus, will you disown me, or just sentence me to a month of the silent treatment?  Please get back to me ASAP.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Just Don't Get It: Moustache Edition

Ok, admittedly, I'm not always usually ever the first to know about the latest fads.  However, often I can at least more or less "get" them and their appeal.  Cupcakes?  Owls?  Nyan Cat?  Sure, those are fine.  I can see how they might've become popular.  (I even like all three of those.)  This fake moustache craze that's been going on for years (?), though, I just don't get. 

How did this fake moustache thing even get started?  Does anyone know? All I know is that I've been seeing them with increasing regularity over the past year or so, and I think they're kind of gross.  Yeah, that's right, I said it. ;o)  Call me an old fuddy-duddy, but I'm not a fan.  (Some) real moustaches are ok, as long as they aren't hideous.  (If you aren't sure whether or not your moustache is hideous, please ask a trusted friend.  Either that or embrace the hideousness and try not to be offended when people look away with an ill-concealed expression of disgust... and possibly a little fear.) 

Again, to restate:
Real, non-hideous moustaches? Ok. 
Fake ones?  Popping up everywhere?  Next fad, please!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Ugh. Time for a News Blackout...

What with one thing and another-- such as what in the world is this ('Google Maps satellite spots bizarre structures in Chinese desert') all about??-- I'm thinking it may be time to take a brief timeout from the news.

Don't want to give myself an ulcer.  ;o)

Monday, November 14, 2011

Attack of the Online Acquaintance Body Snatchers

(I don't write much, here, anymore, though I'm still slightly more active on the reading, photography, and crochet blogs.  [Too many blogs.]  But that's ok.  This blog doesn't cost me anything to keep open, and I like having a place to post when the mood does strike me.)

I just had the weird and unpleasant-- but not unusual-- experience of realizing how different some people are from myself.  I mean, I know (surprisingly enough) that many people have vastly different opinions from my own, but (possibly because I don't interact face-to-face with a variety of them on a daily basis) I tend to... well, not forget it, exactly... but at least sometimes not devote a lot of thought to it.  Maybe it's more accurate to say that I begin to think that I can always immediately tell like-minded people from the rest. 

If I'm not always aware of where people in my "real life" stand on big issues, I'm even less familiar with my Internet acquaintances' stances.  Maybe it's just that with most people I interact with/"follow" (on social networking sites, blogs, etc.) online, I'm rarely confronted with their opinions on serious topics.  They chat about hobbies and pets.  I post photos of crochet projects and autumn leaves.  When we interact, it's usually about very light stuff, and it's always friendly.

And then I read a tweet or something that throws me for a loop.   

Oh.  I didn't know CraftyGal465 was one of them.  It's a shock when CrochetPumpkin23, that sweet-seeming person who makes doggy sweaters and donates preemie hats to the local hospital starts tossing around terms like "teabaggers".  When ArtsyFartsyL@dy refers to a relative as "god-loving" like it's a bad thing, I'm slightly stunned.

It's a little like finding out your casual friendly acquaintance has been body-snatched by the pod people.  Surprise!  These people think your beliefs are stupid!  Hey, look!  They're pointing and laughing at people like you!  If they knew what you believe in-- politically, spiritually-- they'd think you an imbecile!

Silly, I know, but there it is...

There's a certain illusion of familiarity in so many Internet-based relationships.  It's probably better that way, for most of them.  You know what they say about politics, religion, and money.   (Says the person who frequently expresses political opinions on this blog.)