It’s COLD here. Like in the teens. How do you people suffer this for months and months?
We were running Starkvegas errands the other day. It was mid-January. The temperature was 65-70. What a dilemma!
65-70. Flip flops.
Mid-January. Winter boots.
My unscientific analysis of my observations put it at about 50/50 flip flops to boots.
But this. My God. You can’t walk across the street without seven layers of long johns and a scarf and gloves inside mittens and woolen hat covered up with a hood.
Started the day in Memphis. Get me back to Memphis.
Which is something I never thought I’d say.
Went out with a flashlight. Bonnie is still squacking, and she and Clyde are on their way to the shed. Jack is tagging along behind.
On a related Spring note– I thought I heard a faint peep the other evening and this evening there’s no denying it. The peepers are out!
There is no lamb yet.
What do you think? She will not shut up. She’s got what looks like an utter to me. And her rear is seriously swollen.
Good grief. I have no idea how to turn that around. Please twist your head. Thanks!
Via Ace of Spades HQ Saturday Morning Coffee Break
This post is part of the Bookshelves series in which I pick a a few random
crappy old books from one of the not as many as I need bookshelves here at the Farm and thumb through it.
The Art of Dining: A History of Cooking and Eating. Sara Paston-Williams. The National Trust. Harry N. Abrams, Inc., Publishers, London. 1993.
The title is a bit misleading. It’s a history of cooking and eating in England from medieval and early Tudor times through the Victorian and Edwardian eras. The last chapter, titled “The Well-Ordered Table,” chapter has a lot of beautiful photographs of dining rooms and tables laid out as they would have been but taken contemporarily at various manors and grand houses. It’s aways fun to see a beautifully laid table. But there are also tidbits illustrations I found interesting.
The illustration above is “A State Party” by Richard Dolye from a
crappy old book, Birds Eye View of Society (1864). Apparently at such a party there would be at least one servant per guest. Food is all on the table and guests helped themselves to what was nearby, “but had to rely on footmen to bring other dishes and wine.” Life is hard.
Each historical period treated in the book is separated into three sections. The first addresses food and food availability. The second on the kitchens of the times, and the third on the eating areas. A few recipes are included. I drew from only the Victorian/Edwardian period.
In the 19th century shops began to assume a form that the modern customer would recognise.
This I know something about. I proofread a portion of the
crappy old book, Treatise on the Adulteration of Food and Culinary Poisons by Frederick Accum (1820). Seems there were a lot of (cough) additions to foods and drinks, including wine which for the poor and middle classes was seldom wine at all.
The book’s author asserts that the Victorian era was a time of unprecedented prosperity (for some). The rising middle class was anxious to emulate the landed aristocracy and increasing number of wealthy industrialists and so forth, particularly with regard to dining customs and accouterment. Thus, we have the introduction of
crappy old books which instruct them how to eat and dine like their “social superiors.” (That right there is so freakin’ unAmerican. No wonder we revolted.)
Puddings from one such crappy old book, Mrs. Beeton’s The Book of Household Management (1861). Recipes included.
I have a question. Apparently this rising middle class had household servants. Says so right there in the book. What’s the likelihood these servants could read?Continue reading
Mr. Big Food and I have a paper forthcoming in a book. Yadaya. Publishers want some AutoBio stuff.
Here you go.
“One of us asked the other if she remembered when she first realized she was a libertarian. She did not. After some reflection, though, she did recall when she began to understand what it meant to be free. It was early July 1976.
“Bernstein had the good fortune to have been raised in a community whose school system was classically liberal. For example, at the end of 7th grade, a student could choose to test into Algebra I and Latin I class(es) for 8th grade. If she did, and followed course, this meant Calculus II in her senior year. Students who fulfilled credit requirements could graduate in January of their senior year. Standard required courses were offered at four levels of difficulty, and only parents’ permissions were needed to opt for any given level, though once classes began there was a grace period to change. Elective courses were many and interesting (Mythology, Sociobiology), as were clubs (Latin, chess), and offerings in art, music (cello/orchestra), and sport. Early in Bernstein’s junior year her father was transferred to another state, and she and her family relocated to a community whose school system was—to put it charitably—not of the same caliber. She graduated from high school five months later.
“As a graduation gift her parents treated her to a trip to Germany, accompanied by her mom. Much of her mother’s family lived in Germany, so the itinerary included many pleasant stays with relatives, including a cousin who had a daughter of middle school age. One evening the daughter and her mother were visibly upset. Bernstein’s mother translated that the little girl’s test results had been received and that the little girl did not qualify to attend Gymnasium but would instead be placed in a vocational school. What the little girl wanted to be when she grew up required she attend Gymnasium. But she had no choice. The state had spoken. This offended Bernstein’s sensibilities. So while her own country was celebrating the bicentennial of its independence, in July 1976 Bernstein was abroad and beginning to understand what it meant to be free. “
This is monumentally stupid. And pardon the rant.
As I mentioned elsewhere, there’s a county lake near here. We’ve had a lot of rain. The the levee has structural problems. The levee runs N-S and has a two lane road on it. (By my measurement on google earth, the levee is about 1/10th of a mile wide.) On the advise of the county engineer et al., the NWS declared a flash flood warning for areas to the east (broadly construed) of the levee.
They are working to pump water out of the lake, and there was no rain to speak of yesterday. So they’ve lifted the warning.
The quote is from a newspaper interview with an old guy and his adult son who’ve lived right there their entire lives. He says he doesn’t know what all of the fuss is about. Floods there all the time, no big deal. Shoulda been worried last weekend when it flooded.
JFC. Do you not look at the paper? Watch TV? The problem is not that it’s going to flood. Not that the lake is going to rise and top over the levee. The problem is that the bottom of the f-ing levee is being pushed/washed out. They are on the look out for “dirty water” at the bottom on the side opposite the lake. You can see the mud slides.
I swear. Who remembers the old Foxworthy joke about why do they always interview the lady in rollers and a mumu?
Old dude just turned 70– had to relocate his birthday party on account of the flooding last weekend. In 70 years in Mississippi have you not seen anything wash out? Not worried one bit.
I am not an engineer but I have a common sense appreciation for the force of 500+ acres of water. Scratch that. With the rain it’s now 900 acres. So you’re going to get on your roof, huh? Now just how are you going to accomplish this feat? Have you thought this through? And once on your roof, is your house going to withstand the force of that flooding water? Really? And you’re going to “get” someone to save you? How are you going to do that? Oh. Shit. your phone fell out of your pocket while you were climbing on your roof.
FYI. 1 ft3 (one cubic foot) of water weighs 62.4 lbs. 1 acre is 43,560 ft2. Assuming a depth of only 1 foot (and I’d bet the lake is at least 20′ in some places), that would be ~2,718,000 pounds. Sure, the water can back up to the west (that’s why the size of the lake is greater than it was) but that’s what a 0.1 mile wide and not even a mile long stretch of dirt is holding back.
But the worst is by far is “someone to save me.” Dude. As far as I know there is no Oktibbeha County Navy. FFS dude. Take some responsibility for yourself! You’re assuming that other people will put their own lives at risk to save your sorry ass b/c it ain’t never happened yet? But you got your picture in the paper!! They’ve been talking about the problems for five freaking years. And it ain’t getting any better. I get that you may not want or be able to live anywhere else. Fine. I get that “they’ve” been wrong before. But for crying out loud.
/rant and thank you for your patience if you’ve gotten this far.
The Art of Dining: A History of Cooking and Eating. Sara Paston-Williams. The National Trust. Harry N. Abrams, Inc., Publishers, London. 1993.
I mean seriously. I need a linen press.
[consults the world-wide-web]
I see this contraption is more accurately called a screw or napkin press.
The warning box encompasses areas to the east of Oktibbeha County Lake Dam. The dam is in imminent risk of failure. County officials are working to relieve pressure on the dam. Forecast to rain again this afternoon.
The Complete Book of Ballroom Dancing. Richard M. Stephenson & Joseph Iaccarino. Doubleday & Company, Inc., Garden City, New York. 1980. Discarded from the Oktibbeha County Library System.
In 1980, “one of the most interesting social changes in recent years [had] been the ‘return to the ballroom’ by students at colleges and universities throughout the United States” (Preface).
This interesting social change did not capture my attention. You?
This is one of those books which reminds me there are whole universes out there about which I know nothing, but many know a lot. The history of dance? A distinction between social and other forms? Round dancing was a sin?!? Do tell.
Through a lot of the history discussion– lots of dances come from peasant folk– I had in mind the scene from the wedding reception in Fiddler on the Roof.
All quite interesting. And then we get to Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers whose musical comedies really promoted dancing among the riffraff in the days before WWII.
If it’s been a while since you’ve watched one of their movies, do not delay. Watch one. They are beyond wonderful. Truly. I’m fond of Top Hat, but any will do.
And if watching Fred and Ginger puts you in the mood to learn The American Waltz, The Cha-Cha, or The Ballroom Polka, you can order The Complete Book of Ballroom Dancing from Amazon.
Mr. Big Food was in substitution legal mode for our Football Food menu!
We had had a roast a few days back. And no one sells those little party rye breads in town so we used crackers. And he just warmed the meat up in a saucepan. Good nevertheless.
HOT STEAK CANAPES
Beef strip sirloin steak or whole tenderloin, sliced 1 ½ -2 inches thick
Steak seasoning (whatever you like)
Salty rye bread, slices cut canapé sized
Preheat broiler. Broil meat 2-4 inches from heat to desired doneness. Season meat. Slice thin and serve hot on rye bread slices.
Seriously good. Mr. Big Food made about half of the recipe.
TEXAS CHICKEN WINGS
Makes about 32 appetizers
½ C flour
1 envelope (1/3 C) taco seasoning mix
3 lbs chicken wings, wing tips removed, remainder cut at joint (about 32 pieces)
6 Tbsp butter
1 C tortilla chips, crushed fine
Preheat oven to 350o. Combine flour and taco seasoning mix in plastic bag, add 2 to 3 chicken pieces at a time, and shake to coat well with mixture. Repeat with remaining chicken pieces. Melt butter in a 15x10x1 inch baking pan, place chicken pieces in pan, turn each piece once to coat all surfaces, then roll pieces in crushed tortilla chips and return to baking pan. Bake about 45 minutes.
A Big Food Favorite. Mr. Big Food substituted cut up sausage for the franks.
“Bite-size pieces of frankfurters, coated in a tomato soup mixture of peppery seasonings go well with cold fruit punch.”—The Creative Cook (1978)
APPETIZER PARTY FRANKS
Makes about 4 cups
½ C onion, chopped fine
1/3 C bell pepper, chopped fine
2 Tbsp butter
10¾-oz can condensed tomato soup
1 Tbsp vinegar
1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 Tbsp prepared mustard (preferably homemade—see recipes in Basics section)
Dash hot pepper sauce
1½ frankfurters, cut into 1-inch pieces
In a 1½-quart glass casserole, combine onion, bell pepper, and butter, and cook in microwave oven 4 minutes on High or until vegetables are tender, stirring 1 time. Add soup, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, hot pepper sauce, and frankfurters pieces, cover dish with waxed paper, and cook 10 minutes on High until hot, stirring 3 times. Let stand 5 minutes. Stir before serving.
football food remains! It was tremendous. Nothing fancy but very tasty. Perfect for game watching– provided you have a good supply of napkins.
Recipes coming up.
Long time readers may recall the
Crappy Old Books of the Months series. Though I often fell down on the job because of real life, I enjoyed those. I thought some posts were quite good. Naturally, a few books became tiresome toward the end– you may have eventually tired of the Bacon jokes– but it was a fun series.
This year, let us put a new spin on
Crappy Old Books of the Months and frame the series in terms of Crappy Old Book Shelves. Each month we’ll look at the crappy old books on a single bookshelf (broadly construed) until I run out of bookshelves, which should keep us in business for quite some time.
I will not be too terribly ambitious to start. The bookshelf in the front bedroom that The J-Man loving crafted has relatively few books. I chose them because of their potential appeal to guests who enjoy crafts, gardens, home decorating, food preparation, photography, and ballroom dancing.
Stay tuned. I think we’ll start with ballroom dancing.
Doesn’t happen too often.
Jack and the Dummies stayed in the shack until about noon today waiting for the storm to pass. Started raining again just a bit ago and I saw them trundling through the Pond Pasture headed to the shack in the Overgrown Pasture. Why Clyde is still standing outside is beyond me. Dummy.
Man it looks desolate out there.