Tuesday, January 29, 2013

On snow, firehole cocktails and why I'm SO over bacon

First we talk ski week and then we talk bacon, yes?


We did our annual ski trip last week and YAY!

Someone's excited. And colorblind.

For a brief moment, we behave.

What's that old saying about Wrangler butts? Yes, that. But for ski pants.

I guess learning to snowboard and then jumping drops is no biggie when you're used to riding bulls.

We don't use words so much as middle fingers.

Why wouldn't you learn to ski and then, in one hour, throw yourself off of mean drops?

Even if you're a chick.

I so enjoy being photobombed by friendly skiers.

If it's not going to snow, at least there is a great view beyond our fire pit.

Also slopeside partying and acting like asses.

And s'mores. There's always s'mores.

Bubba says YAY to s'mores. And yellow legs.

I say just TRY to out-Apres Ski me, people. I know this sport and it is MINE.

Also, nice job not snowing until Day 5, Steamboat Springs, Colorado - since I had a 3 of 4 day lift pass.

Photo taken from our condo's window SINCE I WASN'T ON THE SLOPES DAMN IT ALL TO HELL.

That is no nice.

But even with no new snow until Day 5, we still skied and rode our faces off and that is the important part.

Also cocktails. Cocktails are always the important part regardless of whatever it is we're saying we're doing. And Vacation Cocktails are always fancier than regular At Home On A Tuesday Night Cocktails - just FYI.

You don't get a lot of this on a random Tuesday night.

In this case, Vacation Cocktails are more firehole-y than At Home On A Tuesday Night Cocktails, too, even though I promised you a recipe for habanero margaritas that won't give you the condition known as firehole, as I so sorely discovered on Day 5 when I was trying to soothe my OH SURE NOW IT SNOWS sadness with extra tequila.

I should have known that this was not the way to soothe anything. Particularly holes.

But so as not to segue into a delicious recipe on the cusp of flaming butthole talk, I will say that IN MODERATION (something I'll have to become more acquainted with), these cocktails are absolutely yum. Spicy, tangy, sweet, salty and spicy again. Which is why you keep sipping. Because of the spicy. And then it runs the gamut again until you end up at spicy and have to take another sip to cool it down and enjoy it some more and much like anything in life that is both pleasure and pain, you forget the pain when you experience the pleasure and then sometimes you overdo it.

Try not to overdo it on these cocktails because of the aforementioned condition known as firehole.


Habanero Margaritas
Maybe only have one or two but definitely not three or five.

(Makes 2-3)
4 shots of premium tequila - not the shitty stuff.
1 1/2 cups All natural margarita mix that doesn't have anything nasty or fake in it.
Juice from 1 fresh lime
1 habanero seeded and thinly sliced
2 lime wedges
Crushed sea salt

To make
In a cocktail shaker add: tequila, lime juice, 1/3 of the sliced habanero and enough ice to fill the shaker to just below the brim. Put on the two piece lid and shake.

Rub the rims of two martini or margarita glasses with the lime wedge, press the rims into a plate of sea salt and coat it how you like it. For me, I like A LOT of salt because I'm a heathen, but you do what you like.

Remove the lid cap and pour the strained cocktail into the glasses, dividing evenly so that you don't hog it all for yourself JERK and add a few rings of habanero (DO NOT TOUCH WITH YOUR FINGERS OR ELSE YOU'LL BE SAD LATER WHEN YOU RUB YOUR EYES OH MY GOD) and the lime wedge.


But only twice at most. I'm telling you that the third one is a bad idea. After two, I felt great and had an amazing day the next day riding the mountain. After three, I had a migraine (oh hooray) and wanted to die and take people down with me.


And now that I've filled your eyes with snow and cocktail based goodness, let me fill it with disbelief:

I am SO over bacon on everything.

Yes, you read that correctly. I am taking a bacon break. Because it's fucking everywhere and on everything and every restaurant and soul on the planet thinks that the way to improve all foods and drinks and sexual experiences is to put bacon on it or infuse bacon in it or wrap bacon around it and, people, NO.

Just no.

It's not the Make Everything Better Machine.

It's not the magic ingredient in The Perfect Food.

It's not how you rescue a horrific meal crime from the grips of catastrophic failure.

It's also not how you "improve" already amazing things, for example a brownie sundae.

Brownie sundaes are amazing tasting things. They're horrible for you, yes, and not a culinary creation requiring masterful skill and French training, but they taste like heaven. Gooey rich brownie hiding under cool vanilla bean ice cream melting beneath warm velvety fudge sauce and maybe some crushed walnuts. THAT is amazing.

It's perfect. Even when judged by my Roman friend who is at once a talented chef, experienced and discerning fine diner and certified sommelier.

It doesn't need anything else other than maybe a bigger spoon and a dark room in which I may sit and quietly activate the conveyor belt in order to get it into my naked waiting body as fast as mechanically possible.

Maybe that. But nothing else. And certainly not crumbled bits of meat.

Bacon needs to be put back on the shelf because, in addition to the potential complications it may cause during naked brownie sundae ingestion, it's just not a necessary enhancement for ice cream, hot fudge and brownies.

Or coffee.

Or cocktails.

Or shrimp, poutine, hot dogs or TV shows.

Why in the ever-loving fuck do we have a show about some poor soon-to-be-flat lining dude going around our ever-swelling country eating his ever-swelling weight in bacon?


Because we're sick fucks, is why. But that's beside the point. I'm not going to go on a rant about all that. You can look around at your fellow Americans and think about the implications of the ever-swellingness on your own time.

All I'm saying is that I am taking a break from bacon until such time that it, once again, feels and tastes like the uniquely sensational and otherworldly experience that I remember from the Pre-Bacon On Everything times before it jumped the shark more dramatically than the saying's namesake and became the "Uh, I dunno - put bacon on it. Everyone seems to like it so much. We'll sell a million of last year's ski parkas if they just have bacon on them somewhere." answer to all of life's questions.

And I say this with a chest freezer full of bacon, more than a few posts involving bacon and a history of buying into a bacon of the month club, friends. That bacon is just going to have to sit out in the freezer until such time that it's special and new again and I'll thank the restaurants and people of the world to find themselves another menu darling until such time that bacon isn't the default ingredient in every dish, drink and home remedy.

OK, I'm done now.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Soon: Snow, skiing cowboys and habanero margaritas

You know how we ditch the world for a week every winter to fill our souls with snow?

Well, that's what we're doing right now and I just wanted to say that I'll be back shortly with stories of some snow, ski-mounted chaps-wearing cowboys and a recipe for habanero margaritas that won't give you the condition known here as firehole.

See - I do love you.

Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Before and After photos. (Because I know that's all you need to want to read this post.)

Donate old shoes. Done.

Make and can soup stock. Done.
Replace plastic Tupperware with food storage that won't give us brain cancer. Done.

Organize the closet. Done.
With all the organizing, To Do list checking off and cleaning out of all things even mildly offensive, you'd think I was a very aggro New Year's Resolutioner, but I'm not.

I hate that shit.

BUT - I do love organizing and my life's dream is to cross everything off my To Do list and then just sit naked on top of the completely completed list and get pencil marks transferred onto my bare ass while I do nothing.

For, like, days.

Much like that movie that I'm sure you'll immediately recall when I say this, I have a dream of doing nothing.

I fantasize about it. I create To Do lists in an effort to move toward this Doing of Nothingness. When someone asks me what I want to do during a certain span of time, like say, any weekend - my first thought is, "Nothing. Nothing at all. So please don't plague me with your invitations to do Things because it will make me sad for the Nothing that I could have been doing otherwise."

And that is all complete bullshit because, during the few moments in my life when I've found myself between projects or responsibilities or obligations or the horrific combination of the three, I've clawed around maniacally like Jane's sink-bound mouse to find SOMETHING to do.

People - I'm here to say that no matter what fantasies of Doing Nothing I may cherish, I am happiest when I'm active and productive.

I haven't done any research into what that says about me as a person, but I hardly care. It's just the way it goes, I guess. So, while I like to hold on to the fantasy that one day, after I've crossed off everything on my To Do list, I'll be able to sit down and do absolutely nothing - I know that if that moment were to come, I'd immediately find something new that needed to be done.

Maybe then I'd clip the dog's nails.

God I hate clipping the dog's nails.

Anyway, all of that random early morning introspection to tell you that I called in the professionals to organize my closet.

I thought you'd want to see photos and then hear about, while I was being all fair-sies with Bubba by splitting the closet 50/50 instead of 20/80 like it was before, my 50% of the closet got cut short by two shelves by the California Closets people thanks to some dirty computer magic that deleted my precious folded clothes shelves when the design was sent to the installer.


So, now I have the items bound for this folded clothes area stacked up on the floor in there awaiting the shelves that will be installed next week during the second coming of California Closets, an occasion to which I'm considering dedicating a holiday.

But rather than continue to blaspheme and therefore further horrify .5% of you, I'll just show you the befores and afters because I know that's what you're really here for.

Fucking transparent, you guys. REAL MATURE.

Kidding - enjoy:

Before - though Bubba had already cleaned out his side of the closet. Kill joy.

My job was to get rid of all the old organizing shelves. Mission almost accomplished.
Looking at all of our shit piled up on the bed was a somewhat depressing experience.
I LOVE ALL OF YOU, SHOES. OK, maybe there's one pair of too high sandals that's on the bubble, BUT THAT'S IT.

During. I nearly peed when this truck parked in front of MY house.

I was too overwhelmed by the awesome to notice that my shelves were missing. You understand.

After. I had a girl boner the whole time I organized this closet.

Yes. We have a window in our closet. I have no idea why, but look at the fun sunshine shadows. Fun.
Bubba's on a business trip right now with his A-list ties. Lest you think he only has the three.
Though not sure what's going to happen to his belts when he comes home. Also, that purple one is mine. SEE I SHARE.
My secret nook. I shall hide in here when I'm sad and be immediately cheered by the tiers of organization.
My shame corner of off-season shoes that don't fit in the fancy new shoe shelf. DON'T TELL DAMN YOU.
The fancy new shoe shelf is none the wiser.

So, yeah. That's about it with the closet organization. It's done. And I've checked it off the List of Shit To Do Between Semesters, which was a big moment.

A big moment in a sea of big list checking off moments.

Page 1 of 4

Wow I'm a nerd.

Thursday, January 03, 2013

Drunk with the power of proper shoes

Oh how I loathe wearing proper shoes.

Oh how I've always maintained that there's nothing that I really *need* proper shoes for.

Oh how I've gone all over this world in flip flops even when people are all, "Um, people don't really wear flip flops in Italy." and "You do realize it'll be snowing when we get off the plane in Austria, right?" and such.

To these proper shoe lovers I've always just been, like, "Dudes, whatever." and then I installed a fireplace insert in my house so that I could wear flip flops all winter without freezing my tiny alien toes off.

Warm aliens. That's what you want.

Because, yes, I have the coldest feet in womankind. Bubba can attest to this with much enthusiasm, I assure you. Because I like to get into bed and, when faced with his nightly chiding, poke the backs of his legs with my ice toes.

HA HA! Call me bizarre names and make tons of noise getting into bed, will you!

Trust me - he sorely deserves this treatment.

Also, it's very romantic in our house.

With my ice toes and his absurd jokes and the dog's nightly butt licking circus. ROMANCE! It's all around us.

Which is why Bubba got me the world's most romantic gift this holiday season...

Witness ye, Proper Shoes. Already fucked up from the Proper Usage.
I guess the man's Proper Shoes threshold was breached when I was going about my farm work in shiny red rubber boots. Not that those boots weren't proper footwear for the occasion - it was fucking muddy out there up to the knees - but those boots don't have steel toes, durable leather uppers, a green wear indicator stripe and the John Deere emblem stamped on the heel.

Because you can really feel assured of the workman quality of something when a logo most commonly associated with tractors is stamped on the thing.

At least that's the theory I'm working off of, here. Whether it's based in reality, I have no idea.

What I can tell you is that, when donning the Proper Shoes As Determined By Bubba, I am just shy of morphing into an actual super hero.

What? What is this dramatic turn of events? Where are the all-purpose flip flops in all of this footwear madness? What about the frozen alien toes?

Yeah. I'm a changed woman and I'll tell you why.


People, have I ever told you how many times I've bruised the arches of my feet? Particularly my right shoveling foot? No?

Many, many times.

I have bruised the arch of my right foot (and sometimes the left one, too, because I'm equal opportunity like that and also I injure the right one first and then have to fall back on the awkward left one) many, many times doing yardwork like shoveling in improper shoes.

There was a time when I had to take a break from running because I bruised my right foot so severely while shoveling in my old running shoes that I had a visible black and blue swath across the arch of my right foot.

I was only mildly ashamed of myself. Bubba was horrified and used that instance to gently suggest for the one thousandth time that perhaps I might consider GETTING SOME PROPER SHOES DAMN IT WOMAN.

No, he didn't say it like that. He's way too nice. But I got the hint. In the sense that I registered his dismay and went on with my life just as I had been living it before - in flip flops and improper footwear.

Have I told you that I can't learn? Yeah - it's evident here.

Anyway - again, the guy was right. He's been on a real streak lately with his righteousness, which would be annoying if it weren't so life-enriching. I mean, first he teaches me how to make the best iced tea ever and now this? Now I'm a shoveler possessing super human strength?

Allow me to provide evidence to support my claim.

Ratty Santolina bound for the yard waste bin BEFORE Proper Shoes
And AFTER approximately 15 minutes.

These boots should come with a damn cape, is what I'm saying.

That job of digging out three very established and overgrown Santolina bushes would have taken me at least twice as long if I were in my normal yardwork footwear and perhaps three times as long plus a trip to the ER if I were in my footwear of choice - the mighty flip flop.

But no, I put on my steel toe, arch supporting, durable leather with the green wear indicator stripe having John Deeres and got that shit done.

And if a single one of you puts Git 'er Dun in the comments, I will brutally murder you. Really now, do not test me on this.

ANYWAY - these boots filled me with so much shoveling confidence that, after easily tearing out the Santolina without even damaging a single lady hoof, I went on a mad digging spree all drunk with the power of the boots and TAH DAH the overgrown and dying lavender are OUT and sitting at the curb waiting for Pinchy to come haul them away to Greenwaste.

You're so dead right now.
The grapes say THANK YOU FINALLY.

So yeah, proper shoes are now a thing that I understand.

Now that I can approach a big shoveling/digging/getting the EFF rid of yard shit project without the foreboding that comes from knowing that walking will be a tiring challenge for at least one week afterward.

OK, so I'm not entirely free of the Challenge of Walking, thanks to my impromptu super hero weeding session that followed this Let's Dig Everything Out of the Yard session, but that had nothing to do with shoveling. Or boots. Or super heroes, really.

If only John Deere made boots for my hamstrings somehow because YEOWCH.

I don't think I'll ever be in such good shape that weeding the yard won't render my hamstrings asunder.