Saturday, September 11

At Half Mast

Friday, September 10

Thoreauly Marvelous

Who would have thought I'd find a kindred spirit in a tree-hugging transcendentalist like Henry David Thoreau.

Here are some of my favorite quotes:

Love is the profoundest of secrets. Divulged, even to the beloved, it is no longer Love. As if it were merely I that loved you. When love ceases, then it is divulged.

Most of the luxuries, and many of the so-called comforts of life, are not only not indispensable, but positive hindrances to the elevation of mankind.

Things do not change; we change.

We do not live our life out and full... We live but a fraction of our life. Why do we not let on the flood, raise the gates, and set all our wheels in motion?

The law will never make men free; it is men who have got to make the law free.

Only he is successful in his business who makes that pursuit which affords him the highest pleasure sustain him.

There is no remedy for love but to love more.

To a philosopher all news, as it is called, is gossip, and they who edit and read it are old women over their tea... News which I seriously think a ready wit might write a twelvemonth or twelve years beforehand with sufficient accuracy.

Our houses are such unwieldy property that we are often imprisoned rather than housed by them.

Read the best books first, or you may not have a chance to read them at all.

I once had a sparrow alight upon my shoulder for a moment while I was hoeing in a village garden, and I felt that I was more distinguished by that circumstance than I should have been by any epaulet I could have worn.

My life is like a stroll upon the beach, As near the ocean's edge as I can go.

If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.

That man is rich whose pleasures are the cheapest.

There is no more fatal blunderer than he who consumes the greater part of his life getting his living.

Goodness is the only investment that never fails.

Do not be too moral. You may cheat yourself out of much life so. Aim above morality. Be not simply good; be good for something.

The cost of a thing is the amount of what I will call life which is required to be exchanged for it, immediately or in the long run.

The perception of beauty is a moral test.

Nothing makes the earth seem so spacious as to have friends at a distance: they make the latitudes and longitudes.

Heaven is under our feet as well as over our heads.

The man who goes alone can start today, but he who travels with another must wait till that other is ready.

Men have become the tools of their tools.

I am sorry to think that you do not get a man's most effective criticism until you provoke him. Severe truth is expressed with some bitterness.

If misery loves company, misery has company enough.

It is usually the imagination that is wounded first, rather than the heart; it being much more sensitive.

It's not what you look at that matters, it's what you see.

Make the most of your regrets; never smother your sorrow, but tend and cherish it till it comes to have a separate and integral interest. To regret deeply is to live afresh.

It is the greatest of all advantages to enjoy no advantage at all.

I love you not as something private and personal, which is my own, but as something universal and worthy of love which I have found.

The heart is forever inexperienced.

When it is time to die, let us not discover that we never lived.

What you get by achieving your goals is to as important as what you become by achieving your goals.

Rather than love, than money, than fame, give me truth.

Thursday, September 9

The Essentials

Wednesday, September 8

Picture Books

Speaking of favorite childhood reading
what was YOUR favorite picture book?

Tuesday, September 7

India Raga

Went to see Vanity Fair yesterday, and it reminded me (not that I ever forget) of how much I love all things Indian... Eastern Indian, that is. Although I've never traveled physically to India, my imagination has wandered there often.

It started as a child, when I chose my first chapter book - A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett. Its pink cover so enticing, the story of a girl, not unlike myself, who coped with life's cruelty by transporting her thoughts to a better place.

Sara Crewe's tales of her earlier life in India... The delicious smell of spices in the air, the fantastic mythology, yards of brightly-colored flowing silk... They made my Miss Minchin (aka Mom) seem more bearable, too - helping me retain hope for a better future.

And today I find the seeds planted in my heart then have flowered into a real love of Indian culture. Everything from Mehandi to Ravi Shankar. I enjoy the music, the artwork, even the proliferation of really bad movies.

As for this movie, it wasn't bad... But it's tough to buy Reese Witherspoon as anything other than Elle Woods ...Even though she was legally auburn this time.

Monday, September 6


Video provided by Lenny Kravitz
i was converted to the other side
from the day i'd gotten there
i met a girl who took me on a ride
i was young i had no cares

when i moved to california

she played me records i had never heard
while we toked on purple hairs
who, zeppelin, beatles,
kiss, the rolling stones
while we played guitars in air

when i moved to california
california... california
california love!

venice beach and p.o.p.
station twenty-six was free

jeff ho and horizons west
dogtown skates they were the best

hang ten, o.p. were the brands
don't forget the two-tone vans

i miss the apple and my schoolyard boys
nothing ever will compare
but now i skateboard
with my surfer girl
and we really are a pair

when i moved to california
california... california
california love!

Sunday, September 5

Bikini con Carne

I have discovered a way to accurately predict heat waves. When folks put in a request for my chili, I know the weather is about to change. For some strange reason, seconds before the heat turns unbearable, people crave my chili. Al Roker should add me to his contact list.

So on Friday afternoon, although it was a perfect seventy-five degrees out, when my brother told me how much he wants some of my chili, I knew we were on the threshold of a scorching Labor Day weekend... And I was right.

Why people want to eat something fire hot when the weather is fire hot is beyond me, but they do. Therefore, it has officially become tradition for me to cook chili while wearing a bikini. Now there's an idea for Hefner, Bikini-clad chili cook-offs!

If you promise to keep the tradition alive, I will share my chili recipe with you (since no two cooks make it the same). A good pot of chili has a heck of a lot in common with DNA... It's easy to get the idea, but complex to decipher, and when done right, uniquely your own.



3# ground beef, 15% fat
1# ground pork, lean

1 large can crushed tomatoes, garlic flavor
1 large can diced tomatoes, italian style

Herbs and Spices:

2 cloves garlic, minced
hot red pepper flakes
chili pepper powder
dried garlic powder
dried onion powder
dried cumin powder
ground oregano
ground paprika
rooster paste
masa flour


While browning all the ground meats in a large skillet, warm the tomato in a large crock pot set to high heat. Add seasoned salt to the browning meat as it cooks. Stir herbs and spices in with the tomato, measuring according to your preference - see tips below. Finally, add meat to crock pot on low heat, and simmer for up to six hours.

Seasoning Tips:

If you're gonna cook up some chili, make it hot and spicy - or don't bother making it at all. If it doesn't burn your mouth out it's called spaghetti sauce, not chili. To test for proper seasoning, find an old man and give him a taste. If he chokes and falls on the floor, it's almost spicy enough.

What about the beans, you say? Save them for your next burrito.