Perfect toast with a side of pride

February 25, 2018

I love to cook. For me, cooking is meditation in motion. I get lost in the rhythm of chopping, slicing, stirring, tossing. It offers me the chance to slow down and decompress after a day of juggling faculty requests, visitors popping in and out of the office for various business and non-business needs. (I am a provider of chocolate and a listening ear when folks are having a rough day.) It’s my respite before I dive into my evening filled with homework and writing, or relaxing.

Cooking is also my way of showing love for the people that I care about. I want to feed you, my darlings! I want to fill you up with delicious and nourishing food stuffs! And I’m getting pretty good at it. I’m no culinary wonder, but I can put on a mouth-watering spread.

All of this has led to an unexpected development; rarely do I enjoy eating out anymore. For me, eating out is an experience, not a need to be fed. When I go out to eat, I want to taste something unusual, something that I can’t or would be hard-pressed to create at home. As my culinary strengths grow, this task is getting more expensive and harder to find. Steak? I have never had a steak in a restaurant that compares to the steak I can make with my sous-vide setup and my cast iron skillet. Pizza? Oh come on, everyone knows homemade pizza dough and fresh mozzarella beat anything that comes from your local pizza place. The list goes on. I often finish a meal and think, that was good, but I would have done this differently, or that was overdone, or whatever.

Think about it this way, the last time you got breakfast at a restaurant, how was the toast? Now, think about a piece of toast you made at home, toasted to the exact browness you like and slathered with as much or as little butter as you want. Perfect. In my desire to live more simply I am finding more comfort and satisfaction in the things I do with my own hands.

I still love to go out to eat, and I still have nights where ordering in is just more convenient. For the most part, I am learning that when I want a complete meal, as in one that comes with a side of satisfaction and pride, there’s no place like home.


Are you a writer?

February 21, 2018

What does it take to be a writer?

I have asked this question of myself time and time again. I have searched for the answer in books and blog posts and questions put to professors. I have scoured the internet for the answer and spent countless hours chasing down rabbit holes finding the perfect answer.

The funny thing is it’s always the same answer. Every time.

What does it take to be a writer?

Well, you have to write. It’s as simple as that.

Okay, I personally feel that it also takes gallons of tea, but that’s just me.

Put your butt in the chair and write. Don’t stop. No, puttering around on the internet when you should be writing is not writing. Keep writing. Tired? Great, make some tea. Now write some more.

What does it take to write well?

I think this is a tad trickier. I don’t think this is something you can teach. I think you either get it or you don’t. And if you get it you can improve it. Always.

If you don’t get it, if you don’t have the knack, but writing makes you happy, then keep writing. No one said you had to be any good at it to do it. I do lots of things that I am bad at because they make me happy.

Do you write? Great. Then you are a writer. Good, bad, or indifferent. Now get back to writing.


temporal blotting

February 5, 2018

Today I am reminded of the awesome power of pure energy

I am sitting on a rug basking in the warm glow of the sun

A giant star, burning brightly, burning, burning

billions of miles away from me and yet I can still enjoy its warmth on my face

and then

a cloud passes in front of the sun and the change in temperature is immediate

The warmth on my face is gone

A cloud, a patch of tiny water droplets, insubstantial

At the point it gathers too much mass it will fall apart

Raining

So temporal

and yet it is enough

to steal my warmth

Even if only for a moment

The sun is constant, the burning, the energy

radiate

the clouds are temporary

wisps