Friday, March 31, 2017

Riding High in April, Shot Down in May
Spaghetti Squash Pepperoni Pizza Boat
Taking that spaghetti squash and marinara sauce dish to eleven!  Mushrooms, sausage, pepperoni, olives and mozzarella?  Yes.  See, we can have nice things....occasionally.
I remember this was a cold-ish dreary rainy day.  I had to take the shuttle bus to the subway after work. One of those days when you know winter is over but she's trying her hardest to spit in your face as you're shuffling her out the door.  And you're like 'I said Good Day winter!'
I was starting to see the promise of spring and that was enough for me.  You forget what the scenery truly does to your disposition.  Seeing grey for months and the absence of the sun is a blessing and a curse.  I need those seasons though.  I'm one of those freaks that believes we need to earn spring.  I love braving the weather in those dark bitter cold nights and mornings.  Getting on my bike with all the gear or bundling up to walk to see a show or to tuck into some cozy restaurant with a pal. I enjoy how we have to grit our teeth through weeks of those dirty snowy brutally windy or blah days that seem void of God.  But that doesn't mean I don't dissolve into an empty hollowed out shell by March.  To think that those same gothic-like haunting barren limbs will be fully green and breathing life into this city soon.  That is what gets me through that last final dark tunnel.
Winter just piles all the muck on at once.  You're cold, you're wet, you're kind of lonely, you're feeling the bleakness in everything.  The end of the year marks all your failure.  You look grey, people look grey, no one is smiling big.  Your body starts actin' up.  Sometimes my knees just decide to stop working mid jaunt.  Then the flu and colds, germs all around.  The snotty tissues and gross bike gear.  What's to love about it?
But there really is so much beauty in the quiet and the stillness of winter. When you can stop and only hear and see your own breath in the middle of the night. Those right there are super cool moments to remember that no matter what, even through all the joy and the loathing, all the unique thoughts we're so proud of, we are still just one of the filthy animals roaming this planet.  Different sure, but really just another type of beast.  And lots of us are dumb as rocks.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

And Nothing to Get Hung About

Birthday leftovers.  This sauce was so rich and thick and hazy glazey.  That salad with those cute little mini heirloom tomatoes with the bread soaking up the citrus dressing and all of this on a cold day.  It just warms the heart don't it?
Came home on a humpday, nothing to fuss with except reheating.  Only true foodies will feel me on this one but it almost puts a tear to my eye just how gratifying this residual meal could be.  As life becomes more difficult your really appreciate easy.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

You're a Nobody Girl

After work on a sunny afternoon I rode to see my friend at her new job.  Just wanted to say hi and see that she was doing okay and maybe check out the place, shop around a little.  Located in downtown Brooklyn which is not actually a real thing yet by the way.  It's more of an area. Downtown Brooklyn is kind of like that Brit Bit song, I'm not a girl, not yet a woman.  It's not fully formed and still like the wild west in so many ways. Even though its been up and coming for years, the Fulton Mall is somewhere trapped between the 1970's and Mars.  I don't think the streets behind the Fulton Mall exist in time at all.
I got off my bike and walked it up on the sidewalk, looked in the windows of her store and couldn't see her anywhere.  What seemed like a zillion kids just let out of school and lots of hustle and bustle from the nearby subway stop made it feel very chaotic all the sudden.  Some guys were harassing a high school aged girl, yelling out 'shorty with the black jacket, come here' over and over.  Her lack of response did nothing to deter their efforts. I decided to try a visit another day.  I got on my bike and crossed the street.  I was waiting for the light to change and all the sudden my back wheel slid as if on ice and as I struggled to get my balance I heard and felt a loud bang. It was my helmet being punched and yanked, someone else had kicked my back wheel, so my body spun around before falling.  Sounds so innocent and playful now to say, oh, it was just a bunch of school kids.  But that's exactly what it was. My neck is still sore days later though and it wasn't playful at all. The smallest one pulled my helmet off in the way that football players grab when they tackle, my neck twisting with it until it couldn't turn any more and the helmet popped off like a cork and rolled down the street as I fell. It happened so fast. I stood up and pulled my bike with me as I snatched up my helmet and looked up just in time to see the bunch walking away yelling and laughing crossing back over to the other side.  I scanned the crowd for any possible allie but only saw people staring in their cars and those walking moved along quickly.  Maybe they were nervous to get involved, maybe they didn't care.  I didn't want to know.  I just screamed, 'Mutherf*#@ers! but quickly realized they could easily run back and finish me off if they chose, so I rode off even though my adrenaline was through the roof.
By the time I got home I was in a rage.  I will be honest, I seriously wanted to hurt those young boys. Me, a supposed grown person! I felt so accosted. I closed the apartment door and screamed bloody murder until my cat was like 'Aww come 'ere girl, come and git you some. On second thought, why don't you pet me, yeah right there, little more, little more, now keep it going for like 20 minutes, k?'  I calmed down.  Then I texted my sister and friend to get some compassion.  My sister asked why I didn't call the police and I had to explain how ridiculous that would be in the city.  After a half hour I came to the conclusion that although it was a shitty thing to do, they were kids doing what some bored kids in the city do after school, harass bikers.  Whereas I've managed to recover from their nonsense before, this one went farther but I had no recourse.  I wasn't sure what I was but it wasn't fine and my neck has been whack for days. This is probably just another one of those situations where I need to wait until the pain passes but it will probably be okay after rest.   So that means for awhile my off time will be filled with grand scenes of what I 'could' have done and said.  I don't do well with getting over stuff.  This was random but felt so personal.  It felt so hateful but they didn't know me, I was just no one to them.  And maybe that's exactly why it felt so cruel.  To yourself, in your head all day, it's the you show, starring you!  Then out of the blue more than one person comes along and makes you realize you truly are nothing to most people.  You're a nobody girl.
This quickest chicken and rice also happened super fast that night by just browning up two chicken thighs and in the same pan threw in some garlic cloves, onion, broth and rice.  Stirred, brought to a boil and stuck in the oven for 40 minutes.  

Monday, March 27, 2017

Seeing You Or Seeing Anything As Much As I Do You

P's 54th Birthday. He's younger than me and so he's not feeling the whole 55 dread yet.  But just wait, he'll see the light next year, when his balls reach the floor, just how scary it is to hit one of them big markers.  I actually think about his birthday, consider what he'd enjoy, what would be special, not just actual gifts but the food and little excursions. I've been so broke for years that I can't make the big travel plans of yesteryore.  Yeah, I think about it all, and then wait until the last minute and get him something awkward.  Like this year, a piece of luggage??? and a couple of small insignificant items.  Seemed to make sense, he was traveling a lot and needed a good tight place for his camera.  But admittedly, not at all sexy.
Food-wise though, I try to hit it hard. This year it was slow cooked beef short ribs, Broccoli tater tots and a Panzanella Salad, Italian Bread Salad.
I did good on those slow cooked ribs and I threw in some potatoes and carrots due to my 'fear of never enough food' syndrome.
The salad with tiny heirloom tomatoes and toasted rustic bread chunks was right up my alley.

I got him Townes on green vinyl because how cool is that?
I made him Avocado brownies for dessert.  Was going to turn them into a brownie banana split but forgot.
Cajun breaded baked shrimp with homemade cocktail sauce

That morning I thought it would be fun to take a drive out to Coney Island and the Far Rockaways super early in the morning, feel the sea air and breathe in the future.
It was so incredibly cold it became comical.  We ran to the water and back to the car.  The wind wiped the smiles right off of us.

Such a creepy coolness to Coney Island still.  Thought we'd find it all developed because of the new theater but it looks as dreary as ever.

The night before we spent around our buds and great live music and conversation.  He has to be tricked into celebrating his birthday but really, any day to make a little party I'm all for because there is limited amounts of that big bold joy in your average week.  Having fun is something you never regret.