a heartwarming Thanksgiving post

I tend to be very skeptical of those mystery casserole-esque recipes of southern rural lore.
You know the type.
Can of this, can of that, packet of this, twelve sticks of butter and a tub of sour cream and voila!
Of course there is the obvious reason for cynicism toward them, that being my bourgeois hippie mental aversion to the injestion of toxic chemicals and vats of trans fats.
And then there is the more subtle reason, that being a genetic and conditioned predisposition toward culinary and other forms of snobbery instilled by my Nana.  According to my maternal grandmother: if it isn’t seasonal, if it came from a can, if it came from a box, if it contains processed cheese product, if it was made in a grocery store bakery, or if it  is served on anything other than china (oh the horrors), then it has absolutely no place at the Thanksgiving table.
Green bean casserole = heresy.
And Lord help the distant relative who shows up bearing broccoli rice casserole and must face her laser beam heart scorching stare of scorn and utter disgust.
I, too, have absorbed these staunch views into my psyche via osmosis and large amounts of brainwashing through the years.
HOLY MOLY did these suckers look delicious:
Of course I could (theoretically with no promise of execution) have made Martha’s homemade pate brisee with a tart apple filling, or creme brulee, or chocolate mousse, or something else fancy that would stroke my culinary ego.
But that seemed hard.
And also, likely to thrwart my plans for a Hico-pace-of-life-induced Thanksgiving break sleep coma (these associate attorney dark undereye circles aren’t going to erase themselves).  So I needed to tweak the input/ouput levels of my dessert contribution.
And that, my friends, is how I came to smuggle cans of Mountain Dew and Pillsbury Crescent Roll dough into Thanksgiving.
Happy Thanksgiving.
For the Pioneer Woman, for chemical-laden secret ingredients, for my beautiful (albeit slightly elitist) family, and for my friends, I am oh so thankful.

Weekend in numbers (irresponsible 20-something Austin edition):

10: Number of minutes (X 7)  spent on the Star Alliance website creating an around-the-world plane ticket itinerary.  Whoops.
9:  Estimated number of times I asked the DJ to play the song Conga by Miami Sound Machine on Friday night.  Hard to believe I was unsuccessful at this, really.
(why yes that is Gloria Estefan circa 1984, thanks for asking).
8:  Number of cities added to my (fantasy?) around-the-world plane ticket itinerary.  Tokyo? Phuket? Marrakech? Rio de Janeiro? Barcelona?  Anyone? Anyone?
7:  Number of pre-10 a.m. texts in a row without response received from Star Bar attendee whom I naively agreed to exchange numbers with after he told me he was a “screenwriter.”  Just as I am a “blogger.”
6:  Number of plans sketched out on and friends disappointed, seemingly.  I could blame my perpetual  flakiness on being soincrediblypopularandall, but it more likely stems more from my constant overcommitment and unrealistic belief in my own ability to teleport between social engagements.
5:  Number of pounds of bacon-laden macaroni and cheese I desired to consume in the suite at the UT game on Saturday.  Thank you LES.
4:  Number of times i thought about my [loud] yoga challenge proclamation on blog and shuddered at such an embarassingly public demonstration of a commitment handicap.
3:  Approx number of minutes of spastic bliss experienced while the Footloose song played at Molotov.
2:  Number of redbulls consumed at Star Bar.  Of all my bad habits, my penchance for consuming redbull at midnight must be one of the worst. #internalorganfail.
1:  Number of  times I experienced the pure unadulterated joy of incorporating discussions of Moby Dick whilst tailgating.
0:  Number of glow bracelets found in bed over weekend.  If you only knew what a rare occurence this was, you would be very proud of the marked progress toward maturity and overall adulthood that such an accomplishment represents for me.

things that are cool vol II

Are there words for this?  I think not.  So I will just say……whoa.




“Stuff your eyes with wonder, live as if you’d drop dead in ten seconds. See the world. It’s more fantastic than any dream made or paid for in factories.”

Ray Bradbury

random disturbing thoughts on fairytales

One ill-fated Christmas, my parents gifted me with what would become my favorite Disney movie.  In fact, I have the most acute memory of watching Beauty and the Beast as a young girl and actively hoping, wishing, and believing that Belle should end up with Gaston and not the Beast.  Even as a six year old, I remember thinking that Gaston was just…hot.  And what was Belle thinking giving up that studmuffin, anyway?

Should you have forgotten who Gaston was, a little reminder:

Gaston serves as the main antagonist of the original film. He is rude, conceited, small-minded, narcissistic, and spends his time fighting, drinking and hunting. He is considered by many townspeople to be the town hero. Gaston believes that Belle would best suit as his wife based purely on her beauty.  His desire to marry Belle leads him to evolve from a narcissistic but harmless and humorous buffoon to a menacing, murderous villain.

The fact that this guy was my ultimate dreamboat at age six is equal parts telling and disturbing.



Let the record reflect that I am not exactly known for my ability to be consistent, or for my ability to commit.

(The above is precisely why I feel the need to undertake the following challenge.)

Today, I had an idea.  Epiphany, rather.  It had something to do with an insuing quarter-life crisis moment, wherein it occurred to me that if I can’t complete a 30-day yoga challenge, what can I really hope to commit to or succeed at consistently in life?  [Don’t answer that.]

And so, the challenge-for-the-sake-of-a-challenge is this:  yoga every day for 30 days.

Because surely I can manage to at least squeeze in a few sun salutations once per day for thirty days.  Surely.  (This coming from the girl who still has euros floating around in the bottom of her purse from a trip two years ago.  This notion of regimented consistency may be easy for some, but it will not be easy for me.)

In order to fulfill the spirit of the challenge, I will have to do more than a couple of downward dogs a day.  Indeed, I will likely be required to attend at least a couple of 90-minute Bikram sessions per week.  If you have never been to a true Bikram class before, well then you haven’t lived through the torture chamber.

What do I really hope to get out of this challenge?  The satisfaction that comes with knowing I can commit to something for 30 days.

Anticipated fringe benefits include: clarity, focus, and tranquility.  I know I can likely anticipate this because having suffered through many a Bikram session before,  I can tell you that there is some odd peace derived from having survived ninety minutes in a sauna next to an old man in extremely tight spandex briefs heavy breathing and grunting while an instructor standing on a platform at the front yells to the class PUSH PUSH PUSH as you bend backward beyond what seems natural or healthy for the human body and wonder if your fat is bulging out over your yoga pants and then notice in the side mirror that you look like a seriously sunburned soaking wet jabba the hut.

Don’t question the yoga high, just go with it.

I feel if I only practiced yoga more consistently, I might derive some great mental benefit.  And maybe not lose my phone/keys/purse/wallet/mind every five minutes.

So, in conclusion, November 8 through December 8, 2011 ———-> you can find me in tree pose.  There, or writing about it here.

Sometimes I can hear my bones straining under the weight of all the lives I’m not living.

– Jonathan Safran Foer

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