Monday, September 30, 2019

OMG! McDonald's Banned in Six Countries!

For some reason a site called has decided that I need to receive their bon mots and today's tidbit (and about 60 more) concerned itself with six countries that have BANNED our beloved old Mickey D's or, as it is referred to in France - calm down France loves it's Macdoughnalds (phonetic pronunciation.)  

Bermuda used to have one - sited on the US Naval Air Station, but when it closed, there went the only McD store in Bermuda.

Iran kicked everything international out of their country following the Islamic Revolution in 1979.

La Paz, Bolivia did have McDs until 2002.  Reason given?  International corporations don't care about healthy eating. To which I might have retorted, "You don't have to eat them!  Just have a French fry or two Prissy.

North Korea - NONE.  Zero McDonald's.  South Korea, however, has 850 locations.  Cross the border and get your McDs fix?

Iceland - now this is only speculation on my part, but perhaps McDs balked at the idea of  Reindeer Quarter Pounders?

The PR people for Montenegro issued this bulletin - "No country is forbidden to do business here."

Sunday, September 29, 2019

Andrew Johnson, 17th President of the United States

He was born in 1808 and died of a series of heart attacks at age 66 in 1875.  Not yesterday afternoon.

Why did he get the axe?  He was impeached by the Radical Republican (a Republican was radical?  Who knew?)  element in Congress because he tried to implement Lincoln's plan for post-Civil War Reconstruction and opposed the Radical's more punitive bill.

Thank you Indiana's own Anderson Doug.

Saturday, September 28, 2019

What Actually Happens re This "Impeachment" Fuforal?

Beside posturing by opposing factions.

1.  Congress investigates the wrongdoer and his/her deeds.

2.  House must pass by a simple majority of those present voting for or against Articles of       Impeachment which is a formal allegation of wrong doing.

3.  The Senate tries the accused.

There have been just two former Presidents impeached.  Andrew Johnson escaped eviction of office by one vote.  Bill Clinton just went on with business as usual.

Therefore, (to me) impeachment is nothing more than a slap on the backs of the incumbent's hands. A kind of a grown-up way of saying "We don't like you. so there!"  

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Miscellaneous Politics

"Faux News Today:  Walter Reed Hospital is working to get a new wing up and running by November.  It will be dedicated to Democrats who shoot themselves in the foot." 9/26/19

Where the hell are Child Protection Services?  Every one of the kids pictured cutting classes to  roil around with a bunch of idiot parents for a cause they neither understand nor need to know about is borderline criminal.  The science regarding climate change is … nebulous.. at best.  Mommie says we're all going to die!  There's a new monster under my bed - I don't know what it is, but it's there and I'm scared!  

Here in our neighborhood in Southern California, a rally is being announced with the sole goal of impeaching Governor Gavin Newsome who is a nutcase of the highest order.  No more justifiable executions.  OMG!  that's a plastic straw!  Meanwhile up North, San Francisco is offering tourists Poop Maps highlighting where you may see or smell or step in human feces.

H.L. Mencken had it right (and it wasn't yesterday afternoon either) when he said:

"The whole aim of practical politics today is they keep the populace alarmed (and thence clamoring to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins all of them imaginary."  

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

The Korean Shirt

I was bein inundated with photos of a shirt for sale and when I blew it up, I was in love.

It's supposed to make a star shape across your chest.  It doesn't do justice to the ad that made me desire it.  However, by pulling and tugging, I got it to look very nearly like the ad.

What was disconcerting to me was that when it arrived, the big envelope had all kinds of Customs stamps and clearances from THE REPUBLIC OF KOREA.  Not South Korea (somewhat acceptable) or North Korea which is NOT acceptable at all.  I do not want  one red cent of my money doing anything nice for Kim Jung Ugh.  

However, the shirt was on sale for $19 so what the hell.  North or South it's good design and very well tailored.  And I loved the cut of it pictured. . Several of you reading this may well be thinking, "Vell, I vas chust followink orders..."

 But when you see the frequent ads for Luvyle .com , be damned sure you've got the patience to wait for it.   I ordered it 9/7/19 and it didn't arrive until 9/18/19.  "5 to 7 working days, indeed."  The only thing that kept me going was visualizing how great I would look in it. (Hey, I can hope, can't I?) It is tailored and I am not a frou frou type.  

Monday, September 23, 2019

Making the British Royals Your Own Cottage Industry

Which is actually "a thing" with writer and editor of Royalty magazine, Ingrid Seward.  Her newest of at least a dozen books on various members of the Royal Family is "My Husband and I, the Inside Story of the Royal Marriage."  Which purports to cover the 70 years Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip  have  been married.  The marriage took place in November, 1947 with 2,000 invited guests and another 200 million world-wide listening to the radio broadcast of it.  Think of the presents!

In the department labeled "Truth is stranger than fiction" Seward married Ross Benson, a fellow journalist,  in 1987.  She was his third wife which should have been some kind of warning to her, but after he died in 2005 of a sudden and massive heart attack,in going through his things including the deadly informative cell phone, she discovered to her dismay that he was "a serial adulterer."  

After 21 years of marriage.  As astute as she may well be, she really blew it on that.

Which, to be cattier than not, reflects her writing style as well which could best be described as "vanilla."  She is very definitely a booster because she never says anything nasty about any of them (and God knows there's the material, staring her in the face)  which goes far to explain her popularity with the Royals.  They apparently appreciate this and respond accordingly.

Anyhow, "My Husband And I" is pretty much one sunny day after another.  She does report repeatedly that Philip has a hair trigger temper, can be extremely difficult with whom to deal; still has a restless physical nature - always rushing off to this charity or another; clearly unable to just sit down with a book, but, no!  Up and off!  The Queen is a great deal more deliberate in her actions.  When she is upset about something, she will herd up the Corgies (universally hated by the staff) and go for a lengthy walk or have a horse saddled and go off for a solitary ride.  

She is said to be relaxed  and funny with intimates, but in big events such as State dinners she is shy.  She is most definitely not good at "small talk" at the table which is why she often lets her dogs join them - as a source of conversation.  Ask her about any promising horses in her various racing stables and then she will rattle along on breeding, etc. with enthusiasm  or so it is said.

"My Husband and I" by Ingrid Seward, 305 pages,  $12  paperback  

Saturday, September 21, 2019

A Contrast in Styles

It's great and it's what makes us Americans … diversity.

Menu for White House State Dinner honoring the Prime Minister of Australia

   Sunchoke Ravioli with Reggiana Cream and shaved summer vegetables.  (I had no idea what a sunchoke is, but it is a Jerusalem artichoke.  An artichoke by any other name?)
    Roast Dover sole with parsley crisps and fennel mousseline
    Squash blossoms with a baby garlic rouille which is a tamer version of the sauce used for bouillabaisse in Marseilles
     Lady Apple Tart with Calvados-flavored ice cream.  Calvados comes from Normandy, France and it is apple based.  It is also nicknamed the "trou Normande" or Norman hole a reference to the fact that you can eat a seven or eight course dinner; get through dessert and start all over again!

The Last O.G. Cookbook by Tracy Morgan who plays said Original Gangster.  Never having watched it, but trying to get  plot line, research indicated that apparently the main character got out prison (crime unspecified) and started his own prison-style food truck?    Whatever.  We're here to eat!  Book is $27, 223 pages

Prison Cheesecake
1 6 oz. package Graham crackers
5 T margarine
6 mini Babybel snack cheeses 1/4 cup lemon juice
4 vanilla pudding cups

Crush the Graham crackers and add the margarine pressing this mix into a flat pie pan
Bake 6 to 8 minutes at 350.
Ehisk the cheese and lemon juice until it's a paste, beat in the vanilla puddings put it in the pie shell and let chill for at least 4 hours.

Various other recipes include

Parole Board Bacon Burger
Snitches Get Ceviches
Bulletproof String Beans and Minced Pork


Friday, September 20, 2019

Various - Happy 85th Sophia Loren! Self Protection in an Active Shooter Event Must Read

Sophia Loren - you don't look a day over 55!  Well done despite being a widow for the past 12 years.  Or … thought - maybe that's the reason you still look so carefree!?  I am referring to the long relationship between Sophia and Carlo Ponti.  "Long" is not misused here.  They met when she was 16 and he was 37.  He died in 2007 of pulmonary disease.

If all Italian women were Sophia Tough, they will soon run the world.  Go get'em, Sophia!

As there seems to be (thankfully) a current disinclination for nut cases to shoot up many of the population, let me caution you - this lull is sure to be short-lived.  Be prepared.  Toward your safety, I heartily recommend this Website -  It covers a lot of practical advice that might just help you out in a bad situation.  Since I am a practical person with an ever-active  amygdala or "snake brain" I am at more or less at defcon 2 at anytime I am out in a likely (and some unlikely) places.   Restaurants, supermarkets, outdoor concerts and you can think of a lot more.  If you always take or to try to take the Mafia Seat at the rear of a restaurant, in a corner, you know what I'm talking about and, moreover, you are already on the way to active shooter evasion.

Unlikely as it may seem, we are all at risk.  Be prepared.

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Wait For It

The punch line in such gags as Justin Trudeau once dressed up as an Arabian for a costume ball designated as Arabian Knights and he did a thorough job - brown-face and hands, similar to his black turn as Harry Belafonte and for additional public shaming, sang, "Day-0" Belafonte's signature song!  I was surprised that there is such a fuss over a Canadian's didoes!  As far as I know we have always been on good terms with our neighbors up north.

They are so polite - you step on their foot and they apologize.  These are not warlike people.  Not by a long shot.

And speaking of hypocrisy, what about the time Al Gore, self-described High Priest of global warming, peed on a tree?  And the tree promptly died!  Go, High Priest!  Just not on trees.  They aren't biodegradable toilets.  And you DO want to save the trees...

Don't you think that should be mentioned in the ever-growing list of imagined bad behavior?  And endless whines for an apology?

 Justin suck it up and be rude to reporters.  "I was 29 - how smart were you when you were 29?"  I know that coming from Canada this won't be easy for you, but I urge you to send a different message for  dealing with trouble-making Racial Defenders of Our Great Nation - tell them to eff off.  Do it for Canada if not for your own satisfaction.

You can do this Justin.  A bunch of us are on your side.  And we're not even Canadians!  Sorry!  And if you ever find another themed costume ball (in Canada?!) attend it.  I can't imagine they happen often in Canada - too much attention-seeking - O  horrors!  so make the most of it.  You deserve some fun, too.  And following the hosts directive, go ahead and dress up as whatever is being mandated by the host.  Be polite.

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Happy Hour Menus, Leftovers, Barbecued, Pulled Chicken

Monday night was the monthly Gathering of the Faithful Dodgers Fans (-1) and it was my turn to choose where this gala celebration would take place.  I chose Slater's 50/50, 11 Pier Avenue directly across from The Strand overlooking the sand and the ocean,  which is the new site of the Old Mermaid Tavern, the only place I ever was a waitress.  Big fanfare about how it had been up-dated, fluffed up and changed - no more dive bar - in the local newspapers.  Naturally I was curious.

Best of all is that Slater's bought the old Mermaid parking lot, too..  Beach parking is a real bitch.
The interior is considerably changed; from duct tape-mended red fake leather booths to a sleek, "hip" interior predominately black/white and grey.  The double doors facing the Strand let in a steady, cool direct-off-of-the ocean breeze.

So much for that.  We deliberately got there at 4:15 p.m. to take advantage of the bar's happy hour which runs from 3 p.m. to 6.  You can read the menu at slaters50/

There is this though.  Eating dinner at 4:30 p.m. is quite a bit too early for dinner.  How to get past it ...and then I got The Idea.  order a drink, order an app to go with them (don't ever drink on an empty stomach) and then order what you would eat for dinner.  When it arrives by possibly 4:30 p.m.  eat a respectable amount so that you can then legally ask for a doggy bag.  Pay the bill, lug your dinner home in a carry-out bag and eat dinner at 6:15 or a similarly reasonable time!

I had three fat macaroni and cheese bacon balls left even after all three of them had one "to taste" I had two left for me.  I did better on the bacon-wrapped mini-hotdogs which were quite tasty and served on a split and grilled Parker House roll.  Most of one came home with me.  All of the bar foods are $5 each so my tab was $20 - two dishes, two glasses of rose at $5 each.

The guys each went for the hamburger (and my macaroni and cheese balls with bacon)

Meanwhile, back to normal life (such as it is here.)  Richie likes chicken; I'm not real fond of it but if fancied up enough (Chicken Cordon Bleu) I will eat it.

On the other hand, I do like barbecue.  And I had brought home a 19.2 oz. $2.69 bottle of Trader Joe's Ghost Pepper Barbecue sauce to try.  You never know what old Joe(not Biden)  is up to.  In this case, it was about the hottest sauce I'd ever tasted.   Sweet should overrule some of the heat, I thought.  So I bought a chicken breast at the butcher's counter because the pre-wrapped are 4 or 5 breasts and I want no part of that.  I roasted it to fork apart and doused it with a 2/3rds cup honey, 1/3
cup Ghost Peppers.  The honey did kick butt on the peppers and Richie liked it very much.  Enough leftover to make him a sandwich the next day.  

Misc.  Read this in a book and promptly jotted it down for future reference:  About as convincing as a warthog in a top hat. "

Monday, September 16, 2019

"Saudi attacks threaten US gas price hikes, particularly in California."

And so it begins.  The annual upping of gas prices in the summer because "gas requires 'summer blend' (and everyone who can get out on the road then pays through the nose for it.)  I would bet that well before the ashes of the drone attack on Saudi refineries had even started to cool, the corporate honchos were figuring out to the penny how much they can stick it to the gas-buying public.  That's bidness.

I am all in favor of "business."  Stockholders and oil producers are profiting even as we the people are bitching and moaning about gas prices.

However here are some statistics.

Oil shortages?  The United States exports crude to Mexico, Canada and 180 other markets.

Meanwhile, we import 40% of our oil from Canada, Saudi Arabia is good for 11%  Venezuela between dictator wars is good for a measly 9%.

Our reserved crude is kept in a federally-owned swath of salt caves on the Texas and Louisiana Gulf coast.

We have crude to make gas, so much so that it's no hardship to export some of it.

Look it up yourselves - oh, and fill up your tank!  You know.  Before the prices go up too far.

Sunday, September 15, 2019

Gin-soaked Raisins for Arthritis Pain: Placebo or Actually Usefull?

I can only speak for myself here, but I will say that I have had many pleasant experiences with gin-soaked olives!  To fire up the blood - all that's necessary is a gin martini.  Slights perceived through the bottom of a glass are immediately treated.  Some have said that gin works like paint remover on a wall with me as far as manners are concerned.

But alas, this is not about me, fascinating though I may, be gin-soaked or not.

The People's Pharmacy (which sounds vaguely Communistic to me) is a column in the Daily Breeze Sunday edition, under the aegis of Joe Graedon, pharmacist, and Teresa Graedon, doctorate in medical anthropology and nutritionist, which seems focused on "cures" to be found in a health foods/supplements store.

A reader wrote in that he/she? and her five siblings, are all prone to arthritis. The writer goes on, "Raisins, even with gin, are much less expensive than the drugs my sibs have taken over these many years."  (All of them are in their 80s.)  

The Graedon's response is that they first heard about this arthritis pain relief treatment 25 years ago.  They add that since then, "hundreds of people have told us that this home remedy is surprisingly effective against joint pain."

The Graedons have a Website - with a video of how to soak raisins in gin which is total overkill in my mind.  Designed for people too stupid to pour piss out of a boot with the instructions on the sole?  If you need help figuring out how to soak raisins in gin perhaps you should turn to regular arthritis-specific pain medications.  Leave the gin alone until you're mature and wise enough to figure it out.

When you do, do not tell the nice police officers that you were not drinking, but treating arthritis pain.  Tell about him this cure - he may have arthritis, too.  

For myself, should I get arthritis, I will soak my raisins in my stomach after a healthy slug of gin  "Up, please."  

Friday, September 13, 2019

When Local Politics Get Too Close to Home ...

Omnia Gallia in tres partes divisa est    All Gaul is divided in three parts is the opening line of  Homer's The Iliad.

Oops!  Redondo Beach, pop. roughly 65,000, is not Gaul.  And, we have five districts, not just three with a council person for each one of them.

District 1 starts in the south and heads northward.  We live in District 4, bordering Hermosa Beach and District 5 is at the northernmost end bordering Manhattan Beach.  So that you have a feel for what I'm talking about.

Ours is Councilman John Gran of the 4th District and imagine my surprise to read "Group seeks to recall councilman" this bright sunny morning.

Why outraged citizens are moving forward on this is unimportant to non-residents, so I don't bother to report it. .

This is where close to home comes in for me.  I know John Gran.  We were both featured in "South Bay Stories Show" back in March.  During rehearsals and performances we chatted as did all of the cast members.  The recallers (if that's the proper word) are getting out or have gotten, a referendum that requires 25 per cent of registered voters - approximately 2,500 signatures - to pass.  This 2,500 names - if arranged alphabetically - would tell Gran exactly who his friends aren't.  It seems a little hypocritical of me to be pleasant back in March and vote his ass out in September. Dear Miss Manners...

Thursday, September 12, 2019

Neighborhood Irony

Today's Daily Breeze brought hot news this morning - with the headline, "Chick-fil-A on Artesia Boulevard Will Open Today."  (No exclamation mark apparently needed.)

As it happens, due to the terrain here near the major intersection of Artesia and Aviation it is easily visible from our east-facing balcony.

We've watched construction from tear--down of something else to yesterday seeing a really big parking lot and a 2-story building.  What they need with two stories is unknown to me - food storage - is the whole upstairs one giant refrigerator?  Or a secluded dining room for insiders only?  A secret chapel for the pius?  Both?

"A company spokesperson" did some bragging.  It is the 37th Chick-fil-A within 25 miles of Los Angeles and employs 70 'crew members, double ordering drive-thru lanes that merge into a single payment lane, two walk-up ordering windows and a 24 seat patio but no indoor dining area.

Richie who loves ceremonies (they lead to parties) was curious about any ceremony that might ensue from this momentous event.  He asked, "I wonder if they're going to have a drawing to see who beheads the first chicken?"

You were wondering about the irony mentioned in the title.  This new Chick-fil-A is four or five blocks down the hill from the former Dolphin/now The Bar which is the oldest gay bar in Redondo Beach.

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

September 11, 2001 NEVER FORGET. And In My Case, Never Forgive

Some 60 years later, I still consider Germans "Nazis."  

From some past columns:

My thoughts today go to the survivors.  The dead are gone, there is nothing we can do about that.

It's the living that should be in our thoughts.  The mother of a child who never came home again.  The wives of firefighters and policemen who vanished.  Literally.  The father whose pretty little daughter was working her first job after college.  

Everyday people thrust irrevocably into a holocaust of tumbling pieces of massive buildings, blinding smoke, destruction and death.  I cannot imagine what the remembrances done on this day are doing to them.  They will never forget, ; neither should we nor history either. 

We were visiting Long Island, NY, for a family wedding.  It was a doozy and afterwards, we and Richie's brother and his wife went out to Montauk for a couple of days to recover.  Tuesday morning, at breakfast I noticed a group of guests gathered around the big TV staring intently at it.  I wandered over to see what was so interesting. 

I returned to our table and answered the question in their eyes by reporting, "Some idiot flew a small plane into the World Trade Center."    

Vignettes:  At the pool, an older woman laughed  to me, "My son is a cop and he got assigned moving the cars in the underground parking garage.   His back is going to kill him!"  Another remarked confidently that her husband is a nurse, but because today is their 15th wedding anniversary, "He can just call in tomorrow." 

By mid-afternoon, flags fluttered from the balcony railings in front of nearly every room.  Michael's craft store was sold out.

The empty sky was a clear, brilliant blue despite the fact that Montauk is on the flight path for JFK.  Silence and stillness ruled the air. 

St. Patrick's Catholic church's front door had a list of known dead parishioner - 12 - and the next day that number was 18.

At breakfast at a diner, the man in the next booth; back to us, was recounting his escape from one of the towers to two women facing us.  He was speaking as if he was in a trance; their faces were horrified.  I  looked down at the table top.

It took us three years to be able to visit The Hole.  Despite cranes and other bright yellow mechanical things crawling around far below, there was a deep sadness still permeating the site.

And now some probably well-meaning idiot got up a group to create the 911 Memorial and Museum to be located on the site.  It did open and it does offend me that anyone would pay money to visit burned up firetrucks, personal items of the doomed passengers and charred twisted steel.  

I understand that it may well be of great interest to foreign visitors.  But I think that for us, American citizens, who actually lived this event it would be a case of paying through the nose for deja vu. 

Now, 17 years later, memorials continue to be made, the latest being the bell tower in Pennsylvania which is worthy of positive mention.  The dead were individuals and they deserve their mention as such.

.2019     God bless the first responders who continue to die even now.

From Cape Coral, FL - I have not visited the area as of yet.  I would not go to the Museum.  I agree with Word of Mouth on that.

Sunday, September 8, 2019

The Sunday Papers - + Comments

Same paper - two different articles of interest that caught my eye.

Of late there has a great deal of politically driven garbage about The Apocalypse Now!  We'll all be dead in 20 minutes because of what used to be called "global warning" but has been gentled down to "climate change."  Kiss your assets goodbye, in short.  We're all gonna die!  (Much flapping of feathers; alarmed clucks of dismay.)

Thus, as a non-believer in the immediacy of my demise, I noted this on the front page of the Daily Breeze Opinion section.  Common sense vs. hysteria on climate change by Joel Kotkin.

Post Katerina (2005) which was predicted to be only the start of more and more tropic storms (pause to wring hands) when in fact, there have been nearly 10 years of what Kotkin called "hurricane drought."

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration statistics show that at most the only global warming at all has been minimal.   

There has been a 25 peer cent drop in fires, globally since 2003.  How so?  We have been planting more trees than harvesting them for over 30 years.

Bringing it home, Calif. Gov. Jerry Brown likened  the drought of that time as due to climate change.
It ended in a lot of rain - just as it has for the past 150 years.  Or "as usual" (ed.)

Given the hysteria of the above (Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez confided to reporters that the apocalypse so scares her that she often wakes up at 3 a.m. worrying)  the following is appropriate.

Dear Abby
On the knotty problem of too many casseroles after a funeral, she responded by asking her readers for suggestions.

A big basket of pre-made sandwiches put out for eat-when-you're-hungry mourners.
Take the casseroles to a homeless shelter  or to seniors who aren't able to cook or a food bank or a convalescent home - but I'd ask their policy first especially re cakes, pies, cookies for dietary reasons.
borrow space in a neighbor's or friend's refrigerator/freezer assuring them that if they want to, dive in!
Take them to the firehouse and/or police station.  I know personally that firehouses love food.  Forget the army traveling on it's stomach - so do firefighters.  My friend Lucille was a frequent flyer in the Station 2 ambulance so when she was back home, she sent them a big bag of shelled pecans from her home town in Oklahoma and they were thrilled.

Off track on food for a moment, "frequent flyer" reminded me of what we did when my father-in-law died.  Instead of "In lieu of flowers (please do this or that) " in the obituary, his read, "In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to the Halesite Fire Department."  Since all firemen on Long Island are volunteers this was very much appreciated and I, for one, hope this idea lived on.

But one of the best was to bring a generous supply of paper plates, napkins,  plastic tableware, paper towels, toilet paper - and the trash bags to haul it all away.

I read your blog and, considering Obama's dire warning about rising sea levels, it awakened my concern about the wisdom of buying a $15 million beach front estate in Martha's Vineyard.
Jay S(not Z)

I have never been a believer in the theory that humans cause a significant climate change that causes global warming.  Historically, since the Earth was roamed by animals without humans among them, global warming and cooling has been cyclical.  I do not doubt that it happening at an infinitesimal level, but the belief that it will kill us in nine years seems to me to be more of a moronic scare tactic than a scientifically-based hypothesis.  Indiana Doug

Saturday, September 7, 2019

This'n That - Comments

Disquieting News
The President of the South Bay New Orleans Jazz Club sent out the news that tomorrow (Sunday) is our last session at the Knights of Columbus, 214 Avenue I, Redondo Beach.  He headed it "Farewell to the Knights."  Which begs the question, "Where to next?"  

The club officials have explored various venues but there have been no announcements.  This was a perfect spot for quite some time.  Free parking in the Wells Fargo parking lot just up the street, two blocks to the sand on the beach; plenty of choices for a drink and a bite afterward.. big room with a nice bar overlooking it all.  

Tomorrow there will four sets and then I guess we all exit and the door is locked behind us.  We shall see.  

Myabe it will be happy news though - a bigger, better place!  Hope springs eternal?  

Something New at Tin Roof Bistro
The menu now lists a Carbonara pizza - composed of prosciutto, wood-fired maitake mushrooms (they look like a brain, all wrinkledy,) ricotta, smoked mozzarella, pecorino and a sunny-side-up egg.  

Having seen the French version of a pizza with egg on it - a raw egg yolk in the half shell in the center of the pizza, I wanted no part of egg(s) and pizza.  I asked if it might come eggless? "No problem!"  I liked it, but wasn't raving about it egg or not.  In future I will stick to my Pig and Fig which is Neutche's bacon chunks, chunked fig, dotted with blue cheese and a balsamic vinegar reduction and the "bed" of the pizza is ricotta (I think.)   To my surprise, Richie tasted the Carbonara and liked it.  I doubt he'd ever order it because for sure he will not eat fig and pig.  "A pizza should have tomato sauce and cheese and maybe pepperoni!" according to him.  The first time I ordered a pineapple and pepperoni, I thought he'd faint.  "That's not pizza!" he snarled turning his back on it and me.

Though I mourned the lost of the bocce court along the front of the restaurant, when management replaced it with terrace seating and umbrellas, they did a good thing.  It was very pleasant yesterday afternoon - shade with a soft breeze.

Richie is correct; there should be a restraining order against pineapple getting within 100 yards of pizza.  Jay S (not Z)

I say Jay S (not Z) comment about Richie's remark regarding pizza with pineapple on it and I agree 100 per cent.  Pizza should never have citrus on it - never!  Indiana Doug

Thursday, September 5, 2019

Daytripping in St. Martin's

In a reverse, we took the ferry FROM Anguilla TO St. Martin's for a little change of pace which would be checking out the merch for bargains and curiosities rather than somnambulant in the sand .  Buying stuff is a change of pace, right?  St. Martin's didn't disappoint.

I positively glowed as I walked off of the ferry and looked around.  And it wasn't because we left the roof-covered Ferry, but at all we saw in front of us.    This is a city!  Horns honking, pedestrians scurrying, sidewalk restaurants and bars, duty-free shops galore.  There is an excellent shopping area very near the docks with rows and rows of tented vendors pushing native crafts - place mats shaped and painted like mangos, lemons, bananas - all in very sunny colors indeed. .  Wood carvings (birds and tropical fish) galore - t-shirts!  Three for $10! and more!  Almost everything offered was $10.

We poked around among the vendors offerings, Rosalind and I exclaiming cries of joy at beach cover-ups of excellent quality - $10 each.  The guys raided the t-shirt stands- "3 for $10"with some censorship from the wives.  They were both on the very edge of being too old (and teetering) to be wearing t-shirts with words on them.

Needing to hydrate (tropical sun) we stopped for a beer.  The other three ordered in English, "Gimme a Heineken" but when it was my turn, I said, "Je voudrais, s'il vous plait, une boire - avez vous les boires de pression?" and about the time I hit "s'il vous plait," the young waitress was giving me an enthusiastic thumbs up! ("I'd like a beer, please - do you have tap beers?")  Twice I was complimented on my usage (abuse many would say namely every French teacher I ever had) of the French language.  Clearly they speak as badly there as I do here or anywhere else!

We happened upon a chic-looking restaurant on the second floor which had to have a panoramic view of the street below us.  We enjoyed both a good lunch and a great view.  Then we wandered back to the ferry to Anguilla.  A very good day and what I liked best about it was seeing people!  Traffic - which one doesn't see much of on Anguilla - and further they were driving American-style, not being terrified of a wrong-way driver (in our minds) on a narrow, two-lane sort-of paved road.  Civilization, you can't beat it in my view.

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Trying Something

Since it's possible to add photos here, why not documents, too?  Am working on a travel piece just to see if I can still write one; putting it somewhere will come about later.

Moments later.  Nope, can't be done.  The little paperclip thingy didn't show up.  So I will have to write "free style" so to speak.  Pity because it is 800 words and this won't be, not by a longshot.  Meh.  That's life.

Anguilla - and what I wish I'd known then about things to do compared to what I know now.

Richie and I, his brother Charlie and wife Rosalind all spent three or four days in Anguilla. There was nothing to do except eat breakfast, get into the car and listen to Charlie and Rosalind argue about which beach would receive us today? Then drive to it and it would either be satisfactory or not, then beach found  lie on a beach all day, lunching on the beach at the various local's barbecue, hamburger, beer and rum punch purveyors, go back to the hotel, clean up for dinner, go to a restaurant and eat it, come back to the unit, visit and go to bed.

What there wasn't:  art museums, points of interest, things to do (except to lie on the beach which was, to be fair beautiful white sand with crystalline turquoise water.)    Cleverly, I'd brought a very thick paperback book.  It was so fat that I had leftover book for the flight home.  

Today, I wondered if it was still as boring as above?  Hot damn!  It isn't!  St. Maarten and Anguilla, working together, now have a variety of sailboat and catamaran tours.  It's a full 8 hour day.  (Be careful what you ask for?)

This is one of them:  touring Prickly Pear Island and Anguilla beaches from a catamaran.  Snorkeling is said to be brilliant there so that's where the boat goes for a lengthy stop so that the snorkelers can explore.  Landlubbers loll about on the deck enjoying snacks, and alcoholic beverages,  followed by a barbecue lunch on the beach, and then champagne going back to port as the sun sets.  All gratis.  Price?  $129 per person.   There is a day trip aka Party Boat cruise from St. Maarten to Anguilla (no Prickly Pear Island) beach lunch and all of the booze you can swill down included for $120 per person.

From personal experience, I can tell you that all you can drink for free is not the best idea ever hatched.  We were in Cabo and took the pirate's cruise.  They only offered free beer, on a two hour cruise with wrapped sandwiches a half-hour away from landing again.   Only a couple of casualties  (O'Doul's re-labeled?) and they may have been former frat boys on the stag night festivities.

.Just because the booze is free, doesn't mean you have to drink the bar dry.  But if you do, you can still do more things than yesterday when we were there.

Sunday, September 1, 2019

Labor Day For All!

Except for writers.  What?!  You thought Fred the cat writes this column?  And sheriffs, policemen, firemen, paramedics, nurses and presumably pick pockets and muggers who will be redistributing wealth all day long.  So many "banks" to choose from at the LA County Fair, Fleet Week, San Pedro;  Disneyland and Knott's Berry Farm.

All of the above can complain for all of the good it will do. Except writers.

Back in 1882 or 1887 depending on whom you believe, the Central Labor Union and the Knights of Labor held the first Labor Day parade in Manhattan.  In 1894 it was declared a federal holiday which 30  states accepted.  Amazingly enough, they were led by Oregon.  How many people could they have had in 1894?  It must be an Oregon State secret because Google though I might I couldn't find out.

But it wasn't until 9/3/1916 that Labor Day officially began with the ratification of the Adamson Act which, among other things, set forth the rules for 8 hour work days only.

The Lore of No White Worn After Labor Day
Several suppositions were put forth -

White gets dirty very quickly and one way to establish your wealth was to wear white a lot - Cleaning?  "My maid Essie does that!  Heavens above!"

Fashion magazines began touting Fall clothes in their publications immediately after Labor Day.

Crazy Labor Day sales which ironically made department store clerks work 10 to 16 hour days!

On a sad note, Labor Day marks the end of Hot Dog Season.  What?  You don't tailgate at a football game and grill hot dogs?  Insist on a Dodger Dog at the World Series?  Wolf a couple down just to stay warm at a hockey game?

Still sadder - this is the last three-day holiday until Thanksgiving.  Halloween is healthy snacks for little children.  No more candy fests.  Which is sad again!  Before we all start crying … Remember not to wear anything white to a barbecue - mustard will be a bitch to get out of your white outfit.