Monday, January 22, 2007

Our daily bread?

Over the years I’ve gone through various bouts of baking bread. “Wouldn’t it be nice if there were a simple recipe that became so commonplace for me it would fit into the weekly routine and yield scrumptious, freshly-baked perfection?”

Last week we saw an article in the New York Times that promised just that. Flour, salt, yeast and water. Stir it up and let it rest 18 hours. Pour it into a searing hot covered ceramic dish and bake it at a high temperature, and voila! Crusty, yeasty, moist and chewy. Mmmmm.

Guess what: it works. Sort of. We’ve tried it three times now. The second time was the best. Half of the first loaf and all of the third have so far been flung into the woods for the wildlife to enjoy. These things are an art. They take practice. If we get it right, this could be our daily bread.


Thursday, January 18, 2007

Egg ’em on

MR. LEHRER: Is there a little bit of a broken egg problem here, Mr. President, that there is instability and there is violence in Iraq...

PRESIDENT BUSH: Yeah, you know, that's an interesting question. I don't quite view it as the broken egg; I view it as the cracked egg --

MR. LEHRER: Cracked egg?

PRESIDENT BUSH: -- that - where we still have a chance to move beyond the broken egg.


Friday, January 12, 2007


“Operation Iraqi Freedom”

“Mission Accomplished”

“Stay the Course”

“Adapt to Win”

“Plan for Victory”

“New Way Forward”

Pointed out by a favored columnist in the Philadelphia Inquirer, Dick Polman.


Thursday, January 11, 2007

War weariness and wariness

The decider has spoken. Going against the wishes of his generals—not to mention the people he purports to “lead”—he’s escalating his folly and threatening to extend it to Iran and Syria. Oh. My. God.

Talk about a sense of futility. Our new Congress can only twiddle its thumbs it seems. Somebody wake me up from this madness.


Wednesday, January 10, 2007

The red king arrives

Not sure why, but for a long while we’ve wanted to get a new puppy. For years we’d been saying we wanted a Chocolate Lab. So look what we got instead: a “Labradoodle.” That’s a cross between a labrador and a poodle. We found this little guy on the internet, at a place called Rainbow Farm in Missouri. The lady there rescues dogs and cats. This fine fellow came from a puppy mill. They were going to put him down because he came out red, rather than the chocolate color most buyers prefer. Fortunately, he was saved.

Now he’s here with us, safe and sound. We decided to call him Rory, which means “red king” in Gaelic.


Monday, January 01, 2007

Boomers’ chance for redemption

I’m an avid trends watcher. Maybe it’s my undergraduate training in Sociology, but I’m fascinated by the way new ideas and ways of living develop and manifest. An article about the trends of 2007 caught my eye in today’s edition of our local paper, the Southern Illinoisan, and I love what it said: Authenticity is back. Baby boomers are returning to their old values.

Says a trends expert from Hallmark Cards, “We boomers did a lot of singing and talking about ideals. Then we moved into big houses and turned our backs on our beliefs. Now we have a chance to implement our ideals.” Gerald Celente, who has followed trends for 25 years adds, “People are facing hypocrisy at every level. The war, Congress, Wall Street. They feel they’ve been sold a bill of goods. History hates a hypocrite. Boomers have got a shot at redemption."

Well, I must say I’ve awaited this return to integrity for quite awhile. All through the ‘80s and ‘90s my wife and I expressed disbelief to each other as we watched once-cherished values of our generation evaporate in a fury of selfishness and conspicuous consumption. We asked ourselves whether there could be a return to those core beliefs of our youth.

A new authenticity? Bring it on.