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Beef Stew, and Pollster’s Too …

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073114_1555_Roughingupt1.jpgA bright humid sunshine this morning and a comfortable 74°. And the election is done and over, for good or for evil, and I can take my voter card down from the cork board. My side lost the House, the people spoke, and I can turn my thoughts and energy toward more noble things. I’ll not try turn the oppositions political aspirations into gravel, but rather regard them with thinly veiled contempt. And I’ll continue to lie to the pollsters. In fact, it may even be more entertaining now that it was before. I am at my best when I am only marginally engaged. Touch the world lightly …

Still got winter stew on my mind and started assembling the ingredients. Fatty stew meat. No lean here. And ‘taters. Red McClure’s for me. Don’t want mushy spuds in stew, so I cook them separately and add them before serving. Some peas, but not many. Beef broth. The expensive kind. Carrots cut round. White onions. Sliced celery … don’t know why it goes in, it is so tasteless and gets cooked into slurping softness. But it’s traditional. Sometimes one turnip, quartered and sliced, but I don’t feel cheated if the turnip is missing.

It was nice this morning to let my mind run with passages from the holy writs. There is something whole about having a thought, finding the passage that supports it, then leaning back in the chair to see if it gets illuminated. A benefit of an old mind is that the illumination more often comes than not. But at this stage in life, not much changes. We just marvel a lot.

So one day follows another until the day that they don’t. Until that day comes, I am blessed with the gift of coffee and the time to muse while sipping it.

Good morning!



Yetzir Hara ~ יֵצֶר הַרַע

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“While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease.”


And so it is the first day of the week again. Waffle day, as we say in this household. And maybe beef sausages. I think I have some canned pears in the larder, and maybe they should be used up. But I can’t start until the last sip of coffee. I just realized I have another half hour of grace to prepare breakfast, being that daylight savings time is rescinded today.

Thoughts of man’s evil inclination, yetzir hara in the Hebrew, follow me today, along with a myriad of other passages of exhortation. It is a difficult struggle, and I don’t believe man has the individual capacity to rise very far above it. It is like discouraging a rattlesnake from biting.

Yet there seems to be a kernel in mankind that separates good from evil that is unlike the soul of an animal. An animal neither chooses good nor evil but is rather the penultimate existentialist. From time to time mankind hears an inner voice that commands them to choose. The key phrase seems to be from time to time. Certainly, there are directions from the holy writs in proper living and choosing good over evil, but for each of us, there is a point when where we stand before God, and it is there where we choose.


OK … that reverie is now busted.

I have many ambitions for this day … it will be a good day if I accomplish just one of them.

Good morning!

Shabbat Morning

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Shabbat dawns softly with the weakened Autumn sun, but the landscape is still green here, and the lemon-yellow sunlight mixes with the greenery in a lush texture that makes us forget that winter is at the stoop. But it is too cool to wander out on the porch with my coffee unless I bundled up, so I’ll just appreciate it from the warmth of the studio.

Sacred music is playing on the puck, but the bird doesn’t seem to mind the change, and burbles and chirps with happy glee. Shared my morning cookies with the mooches, but sneakily added one more than usual just for them. We don’t just spoil our mutts, we ruin them for anyone else.

Kosher eggs benedict for breakfast again today. I had to try out the turkey Canadian bacon that was in the bacon section of the store. It wasn’t bad at all. Some of the other ham/bacon/sausage substitutes had been disappointing over the years, but this one might be a keeper for those special brunches. I think this may be my first attempt at egg poaching in a pan. I really like creamy poached eggs but resorted to using an egg cooker to make them.

So goes this peaceful moment of coffee sippin’ and music.

Good morning!



Who do you write for?

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blizzardHe wanted to tell you
Of false accusations and shame and parting unpaid
To walk across Kansas in a howling blizzard at Yuletide
Alone, frozen in body and mind while his soul flamed with rage
He wanted to talk of a time when even Death jeered him on
To trudge to a place that was not home and knew him not
And how he hid himself in raggedness and sleaze
But eons passed, the old world changed
The words to tell you still aren’t there
For Rusty Armor is who you see

Gloom, Doom, Chutzpah and Clogged Toilets.

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Woe to you who long for the day of the LORD! Why do you long for the day of the LORD? That day will be darkness, not light.

101914_1729_Somedays1.jpgGloom and damp is upon us today as a huge wave of rain passes over most of Texas and loops into the Great Lakes area. We are reasonably protected in our humble house in the vast pampas in the central part of the state, sitting on a gentle mound in the crook of two rivers.

The puck is playing Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing on Pandora Radio’s Bluegrass Instrumentals station, and the budgie sings along with the plaintive notes of a country fiddle. Super Hubby unclogs a stoppered ceramic biffy with masterful strokes on the billows plunger and returns to his morning musings and coffee sippin. Such is the life of a domestic superhero.

The synagogue shooting has me in a very sour mood. Not so much the senseless shooting, that is pretty much a given in this divided land. But the soppy vigils and tributes surrounding it. Not to mention some [EXPLETIVE DELETED] local preacherette having the chutzpah to make a political statement with Trumps visit to the congregation. Not to mention any names, Reverend Susan Rothenberg of the Unglued Church Project. Sounds more like the Unhinged Church Project. Rev Suze she bills herself. Enough said.

I have a few indoor projects that I am going to attack today, rehang a decorative mirror that leapt off the mantle and miraculously didn’t shatter into a thousand shards on the hearth, and do a little rearranging in the studio. But first I need to charge the drill batteries, and root through the misc. hardware drawer for picture hangers.

And so goes the morning.




Oh Lord, it is ONLY Tuesday?

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101014_2008_Alittleexpe1.jpgWell. Tuesday already. Or as my still employed friends put it, Oh Lord, it’s only Tuesday.

I didn’t get anything done yesterday, though I had good intentions. I decided to mow, and discovered that the tire was flat on the tractor and the bead was off the rim. So I jacked the tractor up and re-inflated the tire, released the jack, grabbed the gas can. The empty gas can. Went back into the house.

So here it is Tuesday. The grass is as high as, well, high … as in unmowed. So I fidget about as I write this morning missive. Yeah … gotta get dressed and go get gas. Then air up the tire again. Then mow.

It usually takes me four hours to mow everything down to civilized living, but that is when I have kept up with the mowing. It is so high now that I can only mow half swaths to keep the mower from clogging up with green goo.

But for the moment, I have a nearly empty cup, but there is a full pot in the kitchen, and four fudge macaroons in the cookie jar. The day isn’t a total loss.

Good morning!


Going to town again

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102214_1546_TimeandSpac1.jpgA cool, but bright sunrise this morning. Chocolate macaroons with coffee on the table. Some ker plunk plunk banjo playing on the puck. Another go-to-town day for me. Hopefully this will be the last trip for a while. Eyeglasses for me, gas for the mower. Drop off a couple of old computer cases at a computer shop that rebuilds them into student grade PC’s …

The inner turmoil has eased today after the horrors of a synagogue bombing only to be replaced with bitter cynicism. One of the elderly victims survived the holocaust only to be taken out by a Jew hating loon. She was very old and a real threat to him, apparently. Five will get you ten that the loon thought he would be a hero and be lauded by legions of oppressed people. It makes me want to be there when it dawns on him that the world thinks of him as a tragic flake that needs to be put down like a sick animal.

And all my friends whom I have not returned calls to … I will return them! Honestly. I just didn’t know that so many things were going to crop up all at once. After my trip to town, I’ll mow the jungle that has sprung up around my house after the long fall rains. Then my week will return to its normal idle reverie.

Got all the fixings for an eggs benedict brunch this week. Kosher style, of course. Maybe mid-week. I am about three meals behind with my cooking duties and thought maybe I would catch up with some morning brunches. Snooks doesn’t care, as long as she doesn’t have to meal plan.

And so the day unfolds.

Perfect coffee, perfect cookies, and glorious noise for the bird.

Good morning!