Saturday, July 13, 2013

Whoaaa, we’re halfway there!

Colonel Meow2Go on, finish know you want to!

I don’t have a picture for you, so here is a picture of Colonel Meow. After a long day on the road, it’s a wonder that I don’t look like that!

Things went fairly smoothly until we hit Nashville. I don’t know if traffic is always like that going into the weekend, but it seemed like there was an exodus of biblical proportions going on both north and south of town. This is the second time we’ve run into crazy traffic in Nashville, so we’re thinking of taking a different route next time. Ain’t nobody got time for that!

After we finally got out of that bottleneck, we were rollin’ along pretty well, then managed to just hit the 8 pm closure of part of I-24 through Chattanooga. Dang it! It was looking kind of bad for a while there, and we were thinking we might not make our destination of Kennesaw...but then the detour was minor, we were right back on I-24, and we were MOTORIN’!

Go on, finish know you want to!

Then it was smooth sailing, and we managed to hit Kennesaw at about 10. Apparently, there is some sort of baseball tournament going on, so our Springhill Suites was all booked up, but she said that Comfort Suites had some kings left. We booked it on over to Comfort Suites, and as Ken was inside getting a room, I was waiting in the car and looking at my phone. All of a sudden....*CRUNCH* and the car moved.

I looked up and the guy in front of us had backed into our Mustang! AGHHHHH! I’m like, “Holy shit!” and I get out of the car. He started driving off, and I was going, “Hey! HEY, MAN! You HIT OUR CAR!” and I was jumping up and down and yelling. was probably pretty funny, now that I think about it, but I was PISSED. I’m not sure if he was really driving off, or if he just didn’t realize what he had done, and I finally got his attention by yelling at him. He stopped and got out, and I said, “You hit our CAR, man!” He was very apologetic, said that he just did not see us behind him. Weird, because I saw him walk out of the hotel, and there’s no way you would not see us parked there unless you were completely oblivious.

Anyway, I look at the bumper, and everything seems intact. A little scraped, but I think a lot of it will buff out, and none of the lights were broken. I said, “It looks okay, but you need to wait for my husband...I want him to look at it.” Ken thought everything seemed okay, too, but we had the guy write down his address and phone number, and Ken gave him his business card. We’ll have it checked out when we get back, and just in case there is any unseen problem, we thought it would be better to have his info. Turned out that he is from Illinois, and they’re on their way back from Florida. We actually had a bit of a laugh about that, when we said, “We’re from Indiana, and we’re on our way TO Florida!”

Can you imagine what a disaster that could have been?! Thank goodness it happened at a very low speed. Pay attention, people! How do you not see a car parked behind you, especially when you just walked out of a building, and the car was RIGHT THERE?

So then we went and had pizza and calzones and beer, and put the road behind us for the day. Now we’re at the hotel, it’s a comfy room, and I have my phone set for a 6 AM alarm. Gahhh! So I am going to end this and get it posted and then try to quiet down my brain enough to get some sleep. Till tomorrow!

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Florida, we’re coming!

Jul 11, '13bProbably more information than Florida wanted to have, but oh well! Ha!

Crazy, productive day today! I was crossing things off of my list at a rapid pace, and got most of it done in the morning so that I was able to enjoy some time on the deck in the afternoon, just relaxing and reading. After a few days of very hot and humid weather, today was absolutely gorgeous. Mostly sunny, high 70s, lower humidity. I was happy to get done with the majority of my vacation preparations, so I felt good about spending some time on the deck!

Laundry is all caught up, the hummingbird feeders are clean and filled, and I’ll run the dishwasher tonight. I’m sure I’m not the only one who likes having stuff like that all caught up before going on vacation. We’re taking a box with a few food items, stuff that we are well-stocked on here, so that we don’t have to buy them there. We’ll do several lunches and dinners out, but we also try to cook a few nights in the condo to save a little money. Besides, we can get fresh fish there, and Ken has gotten really good at grilling fish! We’re taking a couple of bottles of wine, too. We have plenty downstairs, so no reason not to, since we’re driving instead of flying!
Jul 11, '13
Sheeba always senses when we’re going on vacation. He sees the packing activity, and he was all riled up this morning, running around like a little crazy man. It should be cool enough tonight that he’ll come in and curl up with us. I’ll miss our small furry black child, but I know Uncle Shane and Uncle Matt will take good care of him!

I’ll also miss Nutwood, because it really is beautiful right now. But we’ll have a great time in our home away from home, and we’ll be back before too long! There will be more summer and more good times when we get back! I took a couple of pictures out back today so that I won’t feel homesick or anything like that. We’ll both be taking our laptops, and of course, we’ll have our phones, so you can expect frequent updates. Florida will be relaxing, but you can expect to see me in Rabid Fangirl mode when we stop in Senoia! Lots of pictures of “Woodbury!”

See you on the road!

Give me give me danger

Green Day4I got my errands run this morning, and most of my clothes laid out today, so I’m in good shape to just take care of little, last minute things tomorrow! It’s supposed to be a nice and much less humid day, so I should be able to get a little last minute sunbathing in, too. Yay!

I got some CDs ready to go, and although I’ve got some stuff like Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers’ “Mojo,” and Springsteen’s “Wrecking Ball,” I’m going heavy on the Green Day and did you really think I’d go for long without posting a Green Day song?! Bahaha!

Silly people.

I don’t know what it is lately, but I am just in total punk mode. Not speed metal or anything…I’ve never gotten into that, and Green Day isn’t even close to that. They are very close to the punk that I listened to in high school and college, and for whatever reason, that is just what is speaking to me right now.

Hey, I’m not going to over-analyze it. The most important thing is that it is really rocking my world right now, and that is all that matters.

How about some “Sex, Drugs & Violence”?

All my life trouble follows me like a mystery, girl
I've been chasing down a memory like a mystery, girl
I've been getting lost searching my soul all around this town
I took a wrong turn at growing up and it's freaking me out

Back at school it never made much sense
Now I pay but I can't pay attention
Teaching me the hardest lessons of my life
Too dumb to die I guess, but that's the way it goes
Sometimes I must regress to

Sex, drugs & violence
English, math & science,
Safety in numbers
Give me, give me danger

Well I don't want to be an imbecile
But Jesus made me that way
All my life I've been running wild like a runaway
Wherever the night takes me like a stowaway

Back at home it never made much sense
Now I pay but I can't pay attention
Teaches me the hardest lessons of my life
Too dumb to die I guess, but that's the way it goes
Sometimes I must regress to

Sex, drugs & violence
English, math & science,
Safety in numbers
Give me, give me danger

As I was listening to this, I was trying to think of what it reminded me of. The closest I could come was Rockpile. The lines “Sex, drugs & violence/English, math & science” just really made me think of them. Kind of an innocent vibe and beat, except for the lyrics. I love the line “Give me, give me danger.” It makes me think about my bad decisions in the past, but also about how I got past those bad decisions and started making better ones. I still do dumb things sometimes, but I’m definitely on a better track!

I am still sometimes a bit of a Troublemaker so the “give me give me danger” line speaks to me.

And yeah, I just went meta and linked to a Green Day video in a post about a different Green Day video!

Next week, I may very well be “sunburned in a pink bathing suit.”


Tuesday, July 9, 2013

A political burnout

Election fatigue[click pic to embiggenate]

You may have noticed that I haven’t been posting much political stuff here lately.

I KNOW! Shocking, isn’t it? I still post the occasional thing on Facebook, and more rarely on Twitter (Twitter is more like my Fun Place™), but for a political junkie like me, it’s weird to not be posting as much about politics.

The truth is that I’m a little worn out from it all. I was so obsessive about involved in the ‘08 and ‘12 presidential elections, with ‘10 thrown in there for good measure, and I had a lot of fun with that. But as I’ve seen the obstructionist gridlock continue in Washington, I’ve become angry and jaded and tired of the whole damn mess. I avoid most political discussions on Facebook, because I’m just tired of it all.

As far as I’m concerned, Congress can go suck a bag of dicks. There are absolutely some great people who are fighting for the average folks and who are not beholden to corporations, lobbyists, and special interest groups, but they are few and far between. I don’t think I’ve ever been so disgusted as when Congress failed to pass stricter background checks on gun purchases. I wanted to give every single one of them who voted against it a great big punch in the face. A few bloodied knuckles would have been well worth it.

To use one of our President’s favorite phrases, let me make this perfectly clear. Although I am not happy with everything President Obama is doing or has done, at least he is TRYING to get shit done. The majority of the American people want immigration reform; we want more stringent background checks; we want to see Congress work to enact common sense measures to promote job growth and nudge our economy into a more robust recovery. We want them to GOVERN.

What do we get instead? Idiot teabaggers hijacking the Republican party and demanding further spending cuts, despite all evidence to the contrary that austerity measures hinder growth rather than promoting it, at least during recession recovery. We get these windowlicking dumbasses going back to the culture wars of the Reagan years and telling women that they have to have an invasive vaginal ultrasound before they can get an abortion, and we get religious rhetoric from the braindead godbotherers in Congress who think it is perfectly okay to legislate based on THEIR religious text...but only theirs, because theirs is the One True Religion™! Fuck that separation of church and state thing, right?

Let me also make it perfectly clear that they have not driven me into apathy. I know many who are so disgusted by it that they swear off politics altogether. I have not done that and will not do that. I am taking a much needed break and tuning out all the talking head chatter—much of it is nothing less than ridiculous, anyway—but I’m still paying attention. And I’m angry. As we get closer to the midterm elections and then the presidential election of ‘16, you can expect me to get back to my normal feisty and involved self.

In the meantime, I’m going to enjoy the summer, enjoy music and movies, and have myself a good time. There will be plenty of time to dive back into it in a few months, as the midterm campaigns begin. Some people are probably permanently burnt out on it, though.

Political apathy? You built that, Congress. Great job. Now go DO your fucking jobs, why don’t you?

Monday, July 8, 2013

Chicken Lickin’

Split ChickenDid you miss me yesterday?!

It’s okay if you didn’t. You were probably relieved to not see another post about Green Day!

I’ve been trying to do better with frequent updating, and I was on quite a roll for a while there, so I felt okay about taking a day off from blogging yesterday. That’s my day off from workouts, too, so there you go. I was mostly glued to the TV anyway, watching the last day of the Walking Dead-A-Thon. It was great to see Season 3 again, and it made me even more excited for Season 4 in October! Not to mention our upcoming two-day visit to Senoia, Georgia! Oh boy!

This isn’t a post about music or my favorite TV show, though. It’s a food post! Wheeee! I haven’t done one of those in a while.

Last week, my local grocery store had a special on Split Chickens. Not spatchcocked (is that one of the best words ever, or what?), but just split in half. Of course, I thought of “Return of the Living Dead” and “Under the Dome,” with their Split Dog and Split Cow, respectively. Since I had this Split Chicken, I thought I’d try a different recipe, and went looking for the recipe for Nelson’s Golden Glow.

Nelson’s is a local company, and I was surprised to see that this seems to be a rather unique way of cooking chicken. There may be other places in the country that have this sort of flavor, but I know that I’ve never come across one. They mainly do fundraisers and catering, and it’s a common thing to see a Port-A-Pit trailer on a street corner during the summer, the delicious smell wafting through the air. The service sorority I was in with my sister did a Port-A-Pit fundraiser once, and my sister rented a chicken suit for it. LOL Nelson’s slogan is “If the Colonel had our recipe, he would have become a General.” Haha! This stuff really is amazing, with a smoky flavor and fall-off-the-bones meat. They don’t make their recipe available, but I found one that claimed to be pretty close, so I thought I’d try it. It does require frequent basting, so I asked Ken if he was okay with hanging out at the grill in order to baste often. He said sure, he’d take a couple of beers out with him! And that’s exactly what he did!

Here is the recipe:

1 lb butter
1 C water
1 C vinegar
4 T salt
1 T pepper
4 T Worcestershire salt

It also calls for an ounce of Accent, and a little research showed that all that stuff is is MSG, so I eliminated it. This amount would probably do a couple of chickens, and since I was only doing one, I cut it in half.

Split Chicken2Bring all this to a boil and pour over chicken to marinate. It calls for overnight, but since we eat so late, I was able to do this the day of, and it got a good 8 hours in the marinade. I basted it once while it was marinating. The butter solidifies, so when you’re ready to grill it, you scrape off as much butter as possible and put all the marinade and butter back into the saucepan. Bring it to a boil again. This is very important. You have been marinating raw chicken in this stuff, so you MUST boil it again to use it for basting! Give the chicken a good sear, then cook it low and slow until it’s done. (I think Ken gave it about 45 minutes, and he can correct me if I’m wrong. It could have used a tad bit longer than that.) Baste every five minutes or so with the re-boiled marinade...once it gets a good coating, you don’t need to marinate it as frequently.

Verdict: DELICIOUS! Not exactly the same flavor as Nelson’s (I think they use wood chips to grill), but fairly close and pretty damn tasty. I found it a little on the salty side, and I would cut the salt down a bit. We both agreed that we would make it again. I’ve got some leg quarters in the freezer, and I bet those would be great! It does use a lot of butter, but most of that cooks off, so no big deal. My niece was going to try replacing some of the butter with olive oil and will get back to me on that. I said that I’m not sure how well that would work, because you have to bring the marinade to a boil (twice), but it’s worth a try.

For anyone who remembers Nelson’s Golden Glow, but has moved away and can only get it when they come back here for a visit, this is worth a try. A little labor intensive, and you have to plan ahead, but it was worth the effort!