It has now been five whole months since we last ate any meat. That is quite the success story. In that time, I have created a variety of meatless dinners that we actually enjoy. Fettuccine Alfredo with artichoke hearts and spinach is my current favorite. I keep the recipes of the successes on this blog – see above under the Recipes tab.
After considerable research, today we tried tempeh – a patty-like food made primarily from “fermented” soybeans – for the very first time.
I thinly sliced the brick of organic tempeh I bought at the supermarket today and next boiled the slices in water for 10 minutes to “remove bitterness,” I then browned each slice on both sides (about 5 minutes per side). Then I added about 1/4 cup of water (maybe less) to the pan, a little soy sauce, some maple syrup and some freshly minced garlic. I continued cooking and browning for another couple of minutes.
I piled up the marinated tempeh slices onto a platter and offered the fixin’s to the cat first. He sniffed briefly and backed away – far away! That didn’t seem to be a good sign, but then he is a cat, not a dog. However, I suspect a dog would have backed away too. Then I offered the newly prepared tempeh to Sir Braver who wanted to back away, but didn’t dare. He took the tiniest nibble. “Not that bad,” he said with surprise and actually went for another piece. So I got bold and daring and placed the tiniest morsel in my mouth. “Not that bad,” I repeated. Actually, it is quite good! I think we’ll have the marinated tempeh over a bed of brown rice with perhaps a side of brussels sprouts for dinner. I am looking forward to it.
I am a vegetarian!
It is Friday. It is so nice to end the week with a man in our window, and the sweet smell of noxious fumes.
Sir Braver is at the courthouse today; he has been called to jury duty. He checked in with me periodically via text. At about 2 o’clock I was able to report the news of the day. There was a man in our window!
That’s my bedroom window behind that section of fire escape. The man is under the blue plastic sheeting one floor above. He is directly in front of someone else’s window.
As a reminder, gentle reader, we live on the 4th floor of a 6-story building. I do not expect to see a man in my window – at any time. Nevertheless, I had that surprise about a week or so ago (see blog post There’s a Man in My Window).
Today’s man suddenly appeared in a different window. This time I observed him climbing up the fire escape right past my bedroom window. I was actually dressed this time in something other than my little nightie.
So I reported the event to Sir Braver when he checked in via text. His advice?
Words With Friends is not the Scrabble-like word game you thought it was. In fact, it turns out that it is a dating app! I have been playing Words With Friends for years now, but I only recently learned about its other side.
A few weeks ago I received a new challenge from someone I did not know. It was a young man and his accompanying avatar suggested he was married and they have a young child. It looked innocent, so I accepted the challenge. As soon as the game began, the chat box became active. “Hi sexy babe” he began. I ignored him and played my word. He chatted again with some very salacious words. This time, I ignored the chat and my turn. So he sent another message telling me that he is in it for the sex talk. He demanded to know if I was in or not. “Yes or no?” he demanded. For all I know, he is still demanding.
Yesterday I received a challenge from another guy, a gentleman who from his picture looked to be about my age (more or less) He was immediately chatty too, but moved much more slowly, kind of like a first date (from back in the ’60’s). Where are you from, what kind of work do you do, are you married, with kids – those types of questions. Soon enough, he was telling me how lonely he is. He began calling me honey and telling me how great I am. And then this morning, he sent me a sensuous, poetic message. Yes, he swept me off my feet!
The heck with words and tile-touching! I threw my now-famous nightie, my makeup kit, and some hair product into a brown paper bag. I’m off to the bus station. Here I come, you miserably deficient slimeball!
by Sophie Hannah
Alice Fancourt leaves her 2-week-old baby at home with her husband (the doting father of the child) for the first time. When she returns home, there is a baby in her home, but it is not her baby Florence. The baby has similar characteristics and is dressed just the way Alice had left her a few hours before, but this is not her baby. Her baby was switched while her husband napped.
How does Alice convince her husband, her mother-in-law, and the police that Florence is not Florence, that Florence has been switched with another baby? This baby does not cry like Florence, doesn’t respond like Florence. It is not Florence. It’s not!
Is it postpartum depression that explains this new mother’s confusion? Or is it confusion at all? It is a new mother’s worst fear!
As the plot unfolds, we get to know David Fancourt and we see a side of him quite different from the loving husband and father we first met. His behavior becomes maniacal, explained by an overbearing mother throughout his life, and the traumatic history of having been married before to a woman who had been murdered, a murder that remains unsolved.
It is David’s increasingly horrific behavior that becomes difficult to understand. Although the reader gets a glimpse into his sadistic nature through early descriptions of his work as a writer, his acts of unkindness and then cruelty are extreme, and for what purpose? I relived all-to-vivid memories of chapters of the memoir of an abused boy by Dave Pelzer in A Child Called It. Is David Fancourt responsible for Florence’s disappearance? Is he responsible for the death of his first wife?
The story takes some twists and turns, none completely unpredictable. All in all, it is an absorbing psychological thriller. It is the first in a series, although I have been told it is not necessary to read the series in any order. Recommended to me, now recommended to you.
Blue Bloods. They are filming the CBS crime drama here today – right outside my window!
Trucks and equipment and crew flooded our street this morning. Oh, the commotion! Set up was slow at first as they waited for the city garbage collectors to remove mountains of curbside trash on this trash collection day. I am watching through my kitchen window. When this episode airs, you just might spot me in my window, dressed (of course) in my little nightie.
I wonder when Tom Selleck will get here.
Shower time. I was in the bedroom just about to lift my nightie up and over my head so that I would be dressed appropriately in my birthday suit. With my hands on the hem, a split second away from lifting the nightie up and over my head, I happened to glimpse from my peripheral vision a man just on the other side of my bedroom window. Our apartment is on the fourth floor of our building. The last thing I expect to see is a person close up and just outside my window. There we were, eyeball to eyeball.
I let the hem of my nightgown drop as I quickly exited the room to inform Sir Braver there is a man in our window. Naturally he had to see for himself. Who would believe such a thing! Upon confirmation, he telephoned the super.
Pointing. Brick work. A water problem was detected in the apartment below ours and the source was determined to be the exterior brick wall, our exterior brick wall. So repairs are being made. No need to inform us (or anyone). That is just not the way things are done.
Minutes later, our doorbell rang. The super and another man were standing there asking to come in. There I was, dripping wet from the shower, my hair wrapped in a towel, my body barely covered by a housecoat I only rarely have use for. The men entered and proceeded to the bedroom. They opened wide the bedroom window and the second guy stepped outside – right through the window opening.
So the brick work will continue all day today, right outside our windows. Our windows are now closed and locked, the blinds are drawn. The noise and the dust are not deterred. Life in the big city.
That’s the Super inside our bedroom while 2 men are suspended in mid air – right there.