Sunday, April 15, 2012

A picture is worth a few words now and then

You know, I'm not the biggest fan of Danielle Smith. But someone out there, someone who works for the Calgary Herald, really really must dislike her. Because this is the picture that ran on the front page today: 

It takes some doing to make the ultra-intelligent, telegenic Ms Smith look like a moronic demon. But someone sorted through about 10,000 pictures for THIS ONE and then put it in a newspaper. I think there's a story there; there's always a story there. If this were an editorial piece, in which there were words that said something to the effect that "Daniele Smith is an evil troglodyte who wants to eat Brian Mason for breakfast," we would demand to know what the writer was talking about, why on earth he or she would say such things, and we would get to the bottom of it: the prejudice, the gender bias, the personal dislike, newsroom tit-for-tat, the giddy bad-child glee of doing something mean--whatever it is that's behind this photo.

I don't even think I read the article beneath that photo. I was just stopped in my tracks by the weird ugly creepiness of the image, and I'm willing to bet a lot of other people were too.

They updated with this one:
This photo accompanied a story about Smith's stance that a certain homophobic candidate's personal views about gay people don't reflect her party's position (and let's hope not). The photographer caught her lowing. That's the only word for it. She looks like one of the vacant-eyed cattle that you see in the golden fields at the foot of the eastern slopes of the Rockies, conveniently portrayed by the background behind her.

You can laugh about it--or snicker, whatever--but it's not fair. Maybe I'm just a little sensitive to the way women are imaged right now after being forced to read all about poor Ashley Judd's "puffiness"(wish I had her problems, facially speaking, let me tell you). I do know that elections are won and lost by images--remember Dukakis in that tank!

If I had my way, Danielle Smith would lose this election, but because of her ideas, not because of being photographed vengefully. I think it's beneath the dignity of the Herald to keep up much longer with this tack.

And thus ends the political commentary portion of this afternoon's show. Back to regular programming tomorrow.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

All figured out

I don't know what just happened.

All I know is that, one moment I was having a quiet cup of tea in my study, diligently writing away whilst reading sporadically from a text book on ancient greek constructions of masculinity, happy in the knowledge that Kid was in the hands of another capable parent (okay, so A capable parent), and the next,  the doorbell rang, there was a tumult and a howling hound dog and balloons and pumpkin seeds that I'm supposed to plant and photograph so Kid can be in a contest in OCTOBER?  and I had agreed to a sleepover involving more than one on-bad-acid-jumping-up-and-down, chocolate-besmirched, sweaty little boy, here in my basement.

All I know is that I heard Kid One say to Kid Two: "Hey, she's nice." To which Kid replied: "Yeah, I've got her all figured out."

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Cauliflower witch

Hold tight, mates, this is something you won't ever see again: a recipe. On WornRagged.

I am not a good cook. I can make toast and tea, usually know the difference, and with the help of Mark Bittman, can even make falafel. But it's heavy seas and lots of churning stomachs and generally, it's best if the first mate handles the situation in the mess.  Which he is genuinely pleased to do. Considering.

BUT: I have a superpower. And it's one that you want to know about because it involves the world's third-least loved vegetable: cauliflower.

Tonight, and I tell you this without a world of a lie, Kid begged for THIRDS. Of cauliflower. I know, you want to touch me.

I'm not that big on touching, so instead, I'll pass along a very easy (like, duh easy) recipe for making cauliflower that even children will eat.

Take one head of cauliflower and break it into little trees. I know there's a tech term for that that ends in
-let but I've had some Riesling. Moving forward.

Boil the little trees for about two minutes in salted water, then let them drain.

Meanwhile, heat olive oil and as much garlic as you think you can stand plus two more cloves, chopped, for 30 seconds over medium heat.

Turn the heat to medium high, add the little trees, and make the whole thing brown. Wreck the garlic, even. Just brown it all.

Then squeeze one lemon over top it all, add some salt and: you will not believe it. Your children will eat cauliflower.

I know. I'm a witch. A witch with one trick. A one-trick witch (YOU try saying that after a little of the golden grape).

 I mean it, though: ONE trick. Don't ask me for help with your tea and toast because I will be of no use to you whatsoever.

Go forth and devour the cruciform vegetables like joyful harlots.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Soul mate

I sat next to an older lady (yes! older even than me!) at Kid's tennis lesson this afternoon.

Her: That one's yours? The tall blond?
Me: That's mine, all right.
Her: He's beautiful.
Me: God made him that way so we'd let him stay in the house.
Her: Ah. He's one of those gorgeous savage boys. It's easier if one drinks.
Me: Hello, soul mate. I thought you'd be a he, but whatevs.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

That Woman

So today, I became That Woman. You've seen her, so don't pretend you haven't. Next time, give her a hug and whisper some sweet words of reassurance. Better yet, take her by the elbow and steer her to the nearest bar.

I was a middle-aged blonde who couldn't remember where she parked her station wagon.

Today, of course, because this is MY life, I was also the middle-aged blonde who couldn't remember where she parked her station wagon WHILE WEARING FAKE EYELASHES.

You want to be a middle-aged blonde wearing fake eyelashes if you're in a rocking gay bar in WeHo. If you've just hooked up with some decades-younger friends and you're showing them How It's Done. You do not ever--EVER--want to be the middle-aged blonde in fake eyelashes wandering the West Hills parking lot somewhere between SuperStore and Winners in search of a blue Subaru with a Thule on top. While carrying a shopping bag full of Cadbury Creme Eggs.

Christian tradition holds that today, Easter Saturday, was a Very Bad Day for Jesus, what with the going down to hell thing and being dead and all. Dude: I can totally sympathize.

Maybe this Riesling will put out the flames I imagine are being warmed up for me right this very instant.