Saturday, December 18, 2010

I'm dreaming of a new ......

Not that a career in health insurance isn't glamorous and wildly exciting, but here are my dream jobs (not necessarily in order):

1.) Doowop girl (think "Dreamgirls") -- this requires sequined costumes, big hair teased up with a can of aqua net, singing and dancing. It's always been at the top of my list. Must be located in Vegas to achieve full effect.

2.) A hip hop dancer, like one of The Fly Girls from the old show "In Living Color." Since my "running man" looks more like a siezure (and I've been told: "Never do that again"), I think this career is highly unlikely.

3.) Own a lunch truck -- I haven't tossed this one aside. Would have to keep it relatively simple, but gourmet and delicious. I'm quite confident this could be achieved. This would satisfy my strong desire to be a chef, yet I wouldn't have to work nights, weekends and holidays. I could also drive my truck anywhere and open up shop. Travelling, cooking, making money ... all rolled into one!!!

(From "The Great Food Truck Race" on The Food Network a few months ago)

4.) Boyd Matson's job -- I want his job narrating all of the National Geographic specials all over the world. Can you imagine how awesome that would be?

5.) Have a TV show similar to the old one "On the Road with Charles Kuralt" -- Loved him and the idea of roaming the country in an RV meeting unsung heroes and spending time in towns that no one has heard of. I could finally see the world's largest ball of twine AND get to be on TV to talk about it ... ahhhhhh!!! Maybe I could combine this with #3?

6.) Own a beach bar & grill ... the kind locals like to frequent. A simple lifestyle surrounded people who just want to relax and enjoy life. One of my favorites is "The Beach Road Bar and Grill" in the Outer Banks .... the sisters that own it are inspiring.

Ahhhhhhh ...

Monday, October 25, 2010

Things I Can't Get Into No Matter How Hard I Try

1.) Films - I like movies, not films. Now I'm not saying I've never liked a foreign language film or something that won an Oscar, but for the most part you won't see me at the Ritz. Ritz Carlton maybe, but the Ritz 5 in Philly? No way! Stuff I thought sucked horribly: Michael Clayton, There Will be Blood (or should I say, Snoring?), The English Patient, Rachel Getting Married, Glengarry Glen Ross. Zzzzzzzzzzzz

2.) Sneakers -- They're for exercising, and that's it. Why would anyone want to wear sneakers when there are so many better options available? Comfort doesn't count.

3.) Carrots - Raw or cooked, yuk. They look so good and they're so good for you, but something about them just doesn't gel. I keep trying them in hopes this one will change, but so far no go.

4.) NPR - Where is this on the dial? Is it a number that's below 88 or on AM? I don't know, but it's somewhere that my radio can't find. I have indeed listened to it before, but basically this one kinda falls into the same category as #1 (Films) for me.

5.) Donating Blood -- I'm ashamed to admit to this one because it's such an important thing to do, but it's true. The needle makes me hyperventilate and want to throw up. Sorry, but it's just not happening.

6.) Easter -- I just don't like it. I know it's the holiest of holy days and my parents would be so disappointed to know how much I loathe Easter, but I do. It's on a Sunday, the decorations and colors suck, it's not a work holiday and all of the rabbits, eggs and fake grass in baskets? Nope. Perhaps my love of Christmas will make up for this one.

7.) Small hair -- True evidence that this girl is a child of the 80s. Stepping away from the can of Aqua Net seems to be working out nicely, but still ... I like it long and big. Nuff said.

8.) Starbucks -- Their overpriced and bitter coffee sucks. Perhaps this shouldn't be on this list because I'm not trying very hard to get into it. At all.

9.) Going barefoot -- Having anything touch the bottom of my foot other than my sock or shoe is just not appealing. I don't want to feel grass or sand between my toes, and I don't want tiny crumbs or pebbles sticking to the bottom of my feet. Barefoot on the beach is a little different only because wearing shoes is totally fruitless -- the sand gets in your shoe anyway, so you may as well take it off. Foot hangups, you think? This is just the tip of the iceberg. Don't even get me started on "mandals."

10.) Reading the newspaper -- This is weird and maybe slightly OCDish, but I find the whole experience of reading a newspaper to be completely annoying. Here's why: the paper is dirty and gets all over your hands, it's too humongous (about 3 feet wide and 2 feet tall with the whole thing opened up), tiny print, um .... kinda boring (not too many pictures), and it makes a ton of dirty trash that I get fined for if I forget and throw in the wrong trash can. If someone points out an article, I'll clip and read, Other than that, I get the Sunday paper for Coupons and Travel section only.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Puled Pork Recipe ... sort of

Lora, you requested my pulled pork recipe, so here's the closest thing I can find to resemble what I do. The following recipe is from Good Housekeeping and my mother makes it all the time. As is, it's quite delicious. Unfortunately, I'm not a measurer or recipe follower -- I read a bunch of them, then kinda make up my own. Here are some of my notes and tweaks to the recipe ... followed by the recipe:
  • Esposito's has THE BEST pork loin anywhere. It's worth the trip.
  • Swap the sweet paprika for smoked
  • More onion ... cut small
  • Swap ketchup for a bottled BBQ sauce (I hate ketchup and think it should be outlawed!)
  • A few splashes of hot sauce
  • Put the onions on the bottom when you start cooking ... it helps to keep the meat from scorching and the sauce from sticking
  • At the end if the sauce isn't thick enough, I stir in a mixture of cornstarch and water to thicken it up .... maybe 1/3 of a cup-ish

Pulled Pork BBQ for the Slow Cooker
1 medium onion, chopped
1/2 cup(s) ketchup
1/3 cup(s) cider vinegar
1/4 cup(s) packed brown sugar
1/4 cup(s) tomato paste
2 tablespoon(s) sweet paprika
2 tablespoon(s) Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoon(s) yellow mustard
1 1/2 teaspoon(s) salt
1 1/4 teaspoon(s) ground black pepper
4 pound(s) boneless pork shoulder blade roast (fresh pork butt), cut into 4 pieces

In 4 1/2- to 6-quart slow-cooker pot, stir onion, ketchup, vinegar, brown sugar, tomato paste, paprika, Worcestershire, mustard, salt, and pepper until combined. Add pork to sauce mixture and turn to coat well with sauce.
Cover slow cooker with lid and cook pork mixture on low setting as manufacturer directs, 8 to 10 hours or until pork is very tender.
With tongs, transfer pork to large bowl. Turn setting on slow cooker to high; cover and heat sauce to boiling to thicken and reduce slightly.
While sauce boils, with 2 forks, pull pork into shreds. Return shredded pork to slow cooker and toss with sauce to combine. Cover slow cooker and heat through on high setting if necessary.
Spoon pork mixture onto bottom of sandwich buns; replace tops of buns. Serve sandwiches with pickles, potato chips, and hot sauce if you like.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Random thoughts from a random blogger

Some random thoughts for my blogging re-debut:

Despite having zero athletic ability, I am totally addicted to watching sports. This includes but is not limited to: football (pro and college), Phillies baseball, any Olympic competition, bull riding, those timber-cutting contests with big axe-weilding burly guys, NASCAR, winter sports (especially downhill and snowboarding), college basketball, the Tour de France, and one of the most notoriously boring sports of all .... golf.

The best mascara ever invented is Loreal Beauty Tubes. This is why I no longer walk around looking like Alice Cooper, with big black smudges around my eyes.

Nobody, no matter how perfect their body is, should wear bubble dresses. They are unflattering and ugly. Ever see a woman with her skirt inadvertently tucked up in her underwear? Yep, that's the look of a bubble dress.

And the kitchen MVP award goes to ...... the crock pot. Or should I say crock potS. Three of them, in fact. One round, one oval, and one small. Some people only haul them out in the fall and winter, but my crock pots get a year-round workout. (Below: Pulled pork ... a fave)

My DVR is already set to record Oprah's show on October 29 which is a reunion of the original cast of The Sound of Music. Julie Andrews, Christopher Plummer, all 7 kids, other cast members and some members of the Von Trapp family are going to be on the show. AND .... they're going to sing. Too bad Oprah's gonna be on the show too.

The Wii fit is worthless. It's a total pipe-dream to think you're going to get fit standing in front of your TV pretending to hula hoop. Sorry. I tried it and it doesn't work. Sure it's better than sitting on the couch watching people pretend to hula hoop, but it's not really exercise.

And speaking of the couch ..... I am in a battle with the store that sold me my sofa. It has fitted slipcovers, and they shorted me one. The middle back cushion is missing a cover (note: in picture below blanket is not just there for decoration keeping feet warm). Damn it. And they don't want to send me the cover ..... they thing I should spend $300 for a brand new set. I have 2 words for that: Fuck you.

Fantasy football rocks; however, my teams suck this year. My friend Schue and I own Team Caca, and every year we're in the playoffs but this year I think we're pretty firmly in last place in our division. And in the Pigskin Estrogen league that my friend Truff started, Team Disco Bubbles started out mahvelously, but is quickly sliding to the bottom of the heap. Oh well, it's still fun and I love plotting and strategizing. It also makes watching the games fun.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

No Wiggle

What is it that has brought me out of a 2-month blogging hiatus? Not insomnia and not a burst of creativity, but it was the purchase of a new toilet seat.

So as I was cleaning the bathroom with that toilet duck stuff, I squirted it all over the place by accident and it ate the enamel off my toilet seat. It was left looking really weird and dirty, so of course, I headed to Lowe's for a replacement seat.

Pondering the selection of toilet seats, I quickly ruled out the cushiony one and the clear blue one with an aquarium motif. Finally, I selected a standard seat with one feature that I'd never seen before: "no wiggle."

Funny, huh? But it made sense to me. How gross is it to sit down on the seat and have it slide around, forcing your naked bum to touch some gross part of the bowl that should never be touched by bare skin? Seemed like a smart purchase, but come to find out it has a flaw.

Not a flaw for us girls, but apparently the "no wiggles" toilet seat doesn't stay up when men try to put the seat up. Personally, I consider this a "feature" rather than a "bug", but I can understand why it may be shocking to be a man in midstream and experience a big toilet seat collapse.

So Dave tells me that after 3 weeks, the toilet seat is still not staying up and he thinks it's defective. I shared that the only reason I could think to cause it would be this "no wiggle" thing.

Now, he is convinced that "no wiggle" really means the toilet seat is made for women, not men. That the toilet seat manufacturer found a humorous way of saying "this toilet seat is meant to flop down, so keep your wiggle out of the way!" He REALLY believes this!!

Seriously, I crack up every time I think of it.

Thursday, January 28, 2010


Time to do some mattress shopping. I keep hearing good things about "memory foam", but just the name of it has me a little perplexed. What confuses me is the term "memory." If I leave a big ass dent in the bed, why would I want my mattress to remember that? Seems like "amnesia foam" would be better, so every time you get in bed it's just like new.

"The Devil Went Down to Georgia" came on the radio one night this week during my drive home from work. I'm a rather scary person when that song is on. Why? I know all the words and even singalong to the fiddle competition parts? Weird.

I really like Lady Gaga, but kinda think "she" might be a "he." Anybody else (aside from all the tabloids) with me on this one?

Sorry, but enough of Susan Boyle. So an aesthetically challenged woman can sing ... she may have a CD out, but I've only ever heard her sing the same song over and over again. And it's not even her song.

For years of my life, I always wanted to wear glasses. Over the last month, I've come to the realization that the day when I'll actually need them is fast-approaching.

At long last, I'm finally naming my official fake BFF. And the award goes to (drum roll please) ...... Chelsea Handler. I watch her show all the time and just love her down to earth, smart sense of humor. Yeah yeah, rumor has it she slept around and has/had a drinking problem. I don't care, I think she's funny. She's written a couple of books which I'm sure are hilarious. I'll be picking up this one to read on my trip to Kentucky this week.

And speaking of books, sitting in the car dealership this week waiting for my car inspection to be done, David Sedaris had me cracking up. Better than cracking up -- big, uncontrollable belly laughs. If I'd judged this book by the cover, I would've totally missed out of this piece of hilariousness!!! I'm not an NPR kind of gal, so I never listened to him there, but I'll certainly be reading all the rest of his stuff. He's a good candidate for my club of fake BFFs.

I've been watching "The United States of Tara" on Showtime OnDemand. Toni Collette is a very talented actress, and have thought so since I first saw her in "Muriel's Wedding" years ago. She's been good in everything I've seen her in, including this show. She plays a woman with multiple personalities, and John Corbett (Aidan from "Sex and the City") plays her husband. They've got 2 kooky kids, and the multiple personalities are just hilarious. Check it out if you haven't already.

My favorite car was a Toyota Tercel wagon that my parents gave me to drive in college -- aka "The Bus." I had 3 Toyotas after that and never had a day's worth of trouble with any of them. Am sorry that Toyota's having this gas pedal problem, but am confident they'll fix it and weather the storm. Anybody remember "The Bus?"

Two words I loathe: Democrats and Republicans. Where's the word for "think-for-yourself-ers?" I'll leave my soapbox in the corner, but it seems common sense and flexibility fly right out the window when a political label is too firmly affixed.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

In the Kitchen With Me

Recently, I ran across a recipe in a magazine for "Buffalo Chicken Meatballs" which caught my eye. No messy fryers, skip the fattening skin, but yet you still get that delicious buffalo-y bleu cheese and celery taste. The name of the magazine and the recipe have eluded me, but it really didn't seem that diffcult to make something on my own, so this afternoon I gave it a whirl. These things turned out to be quite tasty, and will most certainly be added to my appetizer repertoire.

Unfortunately, I never measure anything so these amounts are approximate -- proceed with caution if you're a measurement freak.

Buffalo Chicken Meatballs

1 package (~1 lb) ground chicken
1 egg
1/4 c bleu cheese crumbles
1/4 small onion, finely minced
1/2 rib celery, minced (I made fine slices with the mandoline, then ran the knife through to make it even smaller ... looking for flavor without the texture)
pinch of kosher salt
fresh cracker pepper, a generous dousing

2 heaping spoonfuls of Maries Bleu Cheese Dressing
2 heaping spoonfuls of sour cream
2 tbls butter
1/3 c Frank's Red Hot sauce

Preheat oven to 350. (I baked the meatballs to avoid the calories and mess of frying, but you could do it either way.) In a mixing bowl, combine the first 8 ingredients , but only a pinch of the celery. Reserve the rest for later to add to the dipping sauce. I also added a few splashes of hot sauce to the meatball mixture, but the 1/3 c is really for the sauce which comes later. Mush it all together, then form into appetizer sized meatballs.

Bake for 30-40 minutes.

While the meatballs are cooking, make the dipping sauce in a small bowl for dip (duh, what else would you put dip in?) Add: bleu cheese dressing, sour cream, the rest of the celery, and more fresh cracked pepper. Stir and refrigerate.

When the meatballs are done, melt butter and hot sauce in a small saucepan. Pour sauce over meatballs, toss until well-coated, then serve with diping sauce.

Makes 18 meatballs.