Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Bedtime Stories with Condoleezza Rice

So, there are a couple of things to write about but they don't really go together. Lets give it a try anyway.

1) Leila turned 8. EIGHT!! I can't believe it. By the time I get used to it, she'll be turning 9. You would think that in 2010, along with the hover crafts and space living we were supposed to have, that they would have figured out a way to bottle kids at certain ages, or make holograms of them, or figure out some way that we can have them back the way they were for just a little while. I would love to experience L again as a toddler, and a baby, just until she shits herself and then she can be 8 again. Someone get on this, ok?

2) My big, fat, miserable black cat got a chunk taken out of her busheek by some animal and she has a raw, bald, weepy wound. My moms all, "Just put her to sleep." Yeah, mom, and the next time you need a mole removed, we'll put you to sleep. I can't imagine trying to get her in the cat carrier (the cat, not my mom) so I haven't taken her to the vet yet. I really have to get on this. Also in the wide world of animals, I hit a squirrel with my car. I didn't feel a thing, but Rob yelped in the passenger seat and when I looked in the rearview mirror there was furry thing flopping around on the ground. It wasn't there the next time I drove past that spot, so maybe it just has a massive head injury. Sorry, squirrel. But, honestly, I think you hit me, not the other way around.

3) I've decided that I am A) broke, and B) enormous. I still have red and green m&ms all over this house, and persimmon pudding, and we have been eating things like fondu and it must stop. So in an effort to save some money and ease off the cheese and cream and chocolate, I decided that 1) we are not eating out or getting take out until valentine's day, 2) I will use all the meat and food that I have collected in the freezer before I buy any more, and 3) I will try to cook healthy, nourishing, things that make us feel light and airy and regular.

I started yesterday with a $75 trip to the grocery store. I decided to make a chicken chile recipe that I've never tried before. I defrosted the chicken, I bought the peppers and the beans etc. and here's what happened. I'm not a Great Chef, but I can follow a recipe as well as any Food Network-trained home cook. I cut up three poblano chiles, three anaheim chiles and 2 onions, sauteed the chicken, added the spices, etc. etc. and, frankly, it looks nasty. I'm afraid to taste it. I planned to serve it for dinner tomorrow night since chile is always better the second day, but I'm going to make Rob try it first and if he likes it, I'll try some. Its just so green and soupy! Anyway, I've never worked with peppers like these before so it wasn't long before my eyes were burning from sticking my pepper-fingers in them. I washed my hands over and over again, but it was no use.

Later, I picked my mom up to go see Condi Rice talk (more on this later) and she says, "You smell like Chinese food. Gawd! I have to roll down the window!" and I'm thinking, I didn't eat anything! I didn't even taste the nasty looking chile! But it turns out that when you are standing around a kitchen while onions and peppers are swimming in chicken broth and steaming up the whole house for two hours, the smell gets in your clothes and your skin and you stink. Awesome.

Now we're sitting in a dark auditorium and I decide, for reasons I can't fathom, that I'm not going to play with the fringe on my purse like I usually do. (My current purse has seven inch-long fringe on it and I usually spend my listening time rolling it up, then down, then rolling it up the other way, then down again, and it helps me concentrate. For someone who naps so much, I sometimes have a hard time sitting still.) So I put my purse on the floor, and without a cigarette or a pen to click or anything at all to do with my hands, I start picking at and chewing my fingers, a la Leila, which I haven't done in decades. Its winter, so the skin around my nails is kind of hard and dry, and I went to town. Of course, every time I put my finger in my mouth to chew off a snaggy piece, my tongue started to burn from the peppers, and then I went too far on my thumb and its all raw.

What is wrong with me? Did I just turn eight? I got home and tried to clean my hands again and nothing helped. I got up this morning and took a shower to get the Chinese food smell off me, and I googled how to get pepper essence off one's fingers, and the google machine tells me to pour rubbing alcohol on my fingers and let it sit there for a few minutes before I rinse it off. So I go to do this and I realized that my fingers are chewed raw and the thought of pouring alcohol on them is too much. So I just lived with pepper fingers all day. I just stuck my finger in my eye to see if my fingers are still peppery an they are. Why oh why am I such a loser?

4) Condi Rice: I know that she is a controversial figure and my fellow lefties probably have all kinds of policy disputes with her and all kinds of mean things to say about her meeting-of-the-souls with W, but let me tell you this: I understand why our former president, who dare not be named, liked her. She speaks like she's telling you a bedtime story. She can be saying very scary, serious things about terrorism and biological weapons, but she makes you feel so calm and loved while she's doing it. She was wonderful to listen to, and she does not like that Dick Cheney at all, that was clear. Also, you can't tell me that these boots aren't fierce.

***Addendum: I was frightened of the weird green soupy chile, but it doesn't suck! Its actually pretty good. I wont make it again because of the pepper fingers, but its good enough to freeze and eat again in a few weeks. Thought you'd want to know.


lama said...

Even Bruce appreciated Condi's boots. Nice to know she is not a Cheney fan either...

s said...

great boots!

I have an easy recipe that can be good for you depending on how you choose to make it/serve it..... do you crockpot? let me know!


Jewcy Bits said...

Did you say red and green M&Ms? YUM!:)

Lara Starr said...

Call my shallow, but when I saw Condi in those boots, I knew she couldn't be all bad. I felt the same way when Tony Blair told me why we needed to invade Iraq - somehow when it's said with a charming accent, it all makes perfect sense.

Bored Housewife said...

Shelley, I don't have a slow cooker, but I have one hell of a dutch oven. Send the recipe!!