Did You Know You Did

I’m reading a basic college art history textbook. It’s full of interesting words that don’t make good sentences. A typical paragraph is one I only re-read a couple of times, but I’ve re-read a few whole pages like I have a new hobby.

Get glasses, Alice.

Either Christmas light season is under way or Pete needs his eyes checked. I’m betting on the lights.

Example: “[Some guy] was the architect on the [blah blah] temple, first to use [some damn thing] to [I give up, what?]. Never before had [architectural features] done [some remarkable crap we thought was invented in 1850, because we are slow children.]

It has crossed my mind that maybe I’m reading badly filled out Madlibs with gorgeous pictures.



The Docks Are All Swarming

Unabashed eavesdropping! Unabashed!

Siobhan’s laid up in the local hospital. Pete had errands to run and hates hospitals, so he dropped me off, barely slowing the car enough for me to make a heroic leap. I brought her coffee and flirted with the occupational therapist. Afterward, Pete and I got to have lunch together like two people who do that. At the next table, a man I couldn’t see told his companions about the time his house was burglarized. “It was a long time ago,” he said.

They're talking about me. I just know it.


He and his wife were upstairs when someone broke in and they caught him. The burglar got away.

“Did you ever get your property back?” a voice asked.

“No, he didn’t get much. A computer, part of my wallet, some credit cards. I didn’t get that back.”

But the story took a remarkable turn: the burglar came back the next night. The man’s wife was folding laundry and saw the burglar trying to get break in, right in front of her. They called the police and the burglar was arrested. He did five years.

I dig the fringe.

Come here often, sailor?


I’m thinking the burglar could’ve benefitted from some vocational training. Obviously, he was really bad at crime. And locksmithing. Perhaps he could have become a fine plumber.



Surely You’re Not Saying We

Jacqui the organic farmer gave me a sourdough starter as a pet. As you know, I adore a new pet! But I knew less about taking care of sourdough starter than I did about feeding giant pandas. Did you know you can learn anything on YouTube?

Jar full of yeast is yeasty.

It is…ALIVE!

The procedure is this: you dump out about half your sourdough starter, feed it with a water and flour mix. I had some trouble with this. The mix ratio is 1:1 water to flour by weight or 1:2 water to flour by volume. You can use almost any kind of flour you like. I’m using whole wheat.

There are variables. If you keep the starter on the kitchen counter, it bubbles and grows. You have to dump out and feed quite often. If you keep the starter in the fridge, it sleeps. You have to pick a feeding schedule, say once a week. When you get up in the morning, take the starter out of the fridge and let it come to room temperature, feed it in the afternoon, then put it back in the fridge before midnight. It sounds complicated, but that’s because it’s so easy.

It's not like the chickens can go out for McMuffins.

When life gives you sourdough goop, get yourself going on some pancakes.

Once I’d worked out how to care for my new pet, I was left with one more problem. Each time I fed my pet, I would be pouring out some otherwise useful goo, which I could not bring myself to do. I looked out in the backyard and realized I also had chickens to feed.

Discarded goo makes a good basis for pancake batter. Add it to your favorite pancake batter and feed pancakes to your chickens – or my chickens. My chickens are very nice people with an excellent sense of humor, but every morning, they’re going to want breakfast.