Left-Over Posts? Snippets Not Quite Meaty Enough On Their Own To Make A Satisfying Post?
This Is The Place To Come To Use Them Up.

Sunday, 28 February 2010

More on Shoes and Cows

Shoes, a cow and an umbrella!

In case you can't see the sign it says "Coastal food hunted and gathered for you"

They're humourous in Normanville.

Maybe it's because of this.........

The horizon is rather crooked in Normanville too, must be the coffee! Apologies for the rather long post, guessed it was my turn.
Have a productive, enjoyable and fun week.

Saturday, 27 February 2010

Shoes for Sunday

Come on now fess up, do you?? What you're not seeing in this photo is a life-size brightly painted cow next to the sign.Crazy in this part of the world at present!

Friday, 26 February 2010

Make your own lethal weapon

Step one: Realise that all your kitchen knives are disgracefully blunt and neglected, squelching tomatoes, bouncing off butternut squash. Feeble sharpening device too ancient to make a difference. Go shopping.

Step two: Choose between old-fashioned sharpening steel (requiring technique) and whizzy new device in John Lewis (requiring basic ability to saw back and forth). Buy latter, as easier than learning proper technique with steel.

Step three: Have fun restoring every knife in the house to razor sharpness. Feel satisfied, even smug.

Step four: Enjoy newly-restored cutting/slicing/paring power of kitchen knives. Make gallons of soups and stews. Become more self-satisfied, more smug. Consider (briefly) making roses from vegetables.

Step five: Relax. Discover inability of razor-sharp knife to distinguish between carrots and fingers.

Step six: Recognise that a little blood goes a long, long way.

Step seven: Include Elastoplast as an essential element of one's batterie de cuisine.

Thursday, 25 February 2010

Vignettes of French Life (No. 2 in a series)





It would be wrong to assume the French don’t know how to park. 

They just don’t like to follow the rules. 

First Olympic Summer/Winter Crossover Event


Just waiting for Juan Antonio to give it the thumbs up!


Tuesday, 23 February 2010

Pet peeve, self indused

Can't blame it on anyone but myself and it peeves me every time it happens. Every time I sort out laundry to do, I go through every single garment that has a pocket, looking for Kleenex. If there are any Kleenex in the pockets, it is mine since HH does not put them in his pocket. He throws them away. A good idea. Now, even though I go through all the pockets that I know about, many times I open the washer to find bits of tattered Kleenex clinging to the clothes. It is especially bad when that load of clothes were dark pants and shirts. Oh no. I must just learn to throw the Kleenex into the trash can. But being human that I am, I will probably continue to put the Kleenex in my pocket and get peeved when I find it in the washer.

Monday, 22 February 2010

Offroad Quadracycling: Pedal-Powered Donuts! (Video) : TreeHugger

Offroad Quadracycling: Pedal-Powered Donuts! (Video) : TreeHugger

A powered Billie cart and donuts as well...what more fun could you want?

A fragrant thought

This morning  I was opening a new bag of dried cat food ('For Indoor Cats' - i.e. cats like mine, with more sense than to venture out in this weather) and spotted this claim on it:

Not only does it show a rather odd-shaped cat squatting tidily in a litter tray, but indicates by means of a helpful red arrow the  connection between the product and the resulting source of odour. This is for those of us who may never have understood the connection between food in/poop out.

So thoughtful of those cat food manufacturers to let us know. We worry about odours.

Now I know from experience that persuading (they'd call it brutally forcing) cats onto a dry diet makes a huge and positive difference in the horror that can be litter-scooping, but 60% is a very precise sort of a claim. 

How did they measure that reduction? Is there a Faecal Odour Assessor in the organisation? What were the Essential Requirements in the job description? Is he/she allowed a margin of error? Would customers complain if, say, they thought the odour had reduced by only 54%? Were any cats consulted?

I'm not complaining, of course. Any reduction in pong is fine by me. But I am wondering.

Lambs at last

Lambs on our field at last; 4 ewes which haven't yet got used to the notion of motherhood yet and their 8 lambs which have not yet grown into their skins. Their ears are crumpled too.

They seem far too fragile to be out in such bitter weather.


Originally uploaded by eagoodlife
Do these things happen where you live too?

Sunday, 21 February 2010

Why I am avoiding mirrors and wondering about Botox ...

Wrinkles I can cope with.  The lines around my mouth are laughter lines, I tell myself.  Increasing eye bags I can cope with.  I work hard, I tell myself.  On retirement, these will fade (ever the optimist).

But, this morning, I noticed that I now have a vertical line leading up from between my eyes up my forehead.  It is dead straight, and divides my forehead in half.  I'm presuming that if I frown it becomes even more pronounced, like a furrow in a farmer's field, and am avoiding mirrors for the moment.

The even bigger problem is that the line divides my face so well into two that it accentuates the fact that I am not symmetrical.  One eye is bigger than the other.  My nose is slightly to the left of centre.  There is more lip on the right than on the left.

I am wonky.  And now I have a line to prove it.

What makes it even worse is that I wasn't even looking in a mirror when I spotted the line this morning.  I was  at the bus stop (this won't surprise some of you), peering at the timetable, when suddenly I caught my reflection in the glass.  Aaarrrggghhh!  The people driving past would have been most intrigued as to why I kept backing off from the timetable, then cautiously moving forward again, then pulling at my forehead with both hands, then standing well clear of the bus stop until the bus came.


Saturday, 20 February 2010

Everything is going wrong

there's been more snow,

the dog has arthritis,

and the dragon is upside down.

Dragon, n.
A leading attraction in the menagerie of the antique imagination.
It seems to have escaped.

Ambrose Bierce

A random thought on language and dialect: "Moving house"

To "move house" is not an American language expression. 
Say it to most Americans I know and they think you're moving a residential structure on a flatbed truck from one lot to another.
When I was little we "moved house" from the farm to the village. We spoke in some vaguely old British ways, apparently leftover from my ancestors. The area where I lived then, at the farm, was in northern New York, where people have a dialect all their own anyway. Cows are "caowz," for example. Not quite two syllables, but slightly more than one. 

There are other examples, but this particular expression strikes me every now and then. To my ear, after all these years among people who don't instantly understand, it sounds archaic, charming.

Thursday, 18 February 2010

Don't Put Off Till Tomorrow ...

On a quick trip to a nearby town yesterday , I was unpleasantly surprised by this

Which belongs to this

which looked much better before a recent fire . Luckily the rest is intact and it will undoubtedly be tidied up soon .

I'd always meant to take a better photo of the facade .. but it just proves that one shouldn't put things off . Something might intervene .

Tuesday, 16 February 2010


Is it just me?  I have spent the evening tending my woodburning stove, as usual.  I am beginning to have rough patches on my knees from kneeling on the rug.  The room is warm in that way that only comes from a fire and the stove is burning so well I am resisting going to bed (the electric blanket is on but the room is cool, lovely to sleep in but here it is so cosy).
I really love fires.

Local Colour Plus

Sonata :
Moving to Holland was one thing . Moving to Friesland was a step further than I'd reckoned on . Most of the time this northernmost province is much the same as the rest of the country .... a bit leary of strangers , but so is Vermont or Cornwall or Galicia . But they say once a Friesian for a friend he's your friend for ever ....it just takes a while .

But occasionally I'm suddenly a tourist again ....

It's been a brutal winter , snowing every three days with black ice far too often in the early mornings as I go to work . But not enough ice to skate on , except on the specially flooded fields in every village . A Friesian is virtually born on skates and considers it his birthright to skate from village to village on his doorlopers ( very low wooden skates that strap onto your shoes ) , stopping to warm up with hot chocolate at little stalls set up on the ice .

Which explains why , yesterday , a young man stood in the middle of the river , round the corner from my house , hacking a hole with a screwdriver to measure the thickness of the ice . "It's 5 cm." he bellowed , whereupon his girlfriend hotfooted back to the bank ... while he started to jump up and down . "No , it needs another day " . 12-15 cm. is the recommended minimum .

We were given a C.D. made by a new acquaintance the other day . So I dutifully listened to "It Meallen Fan Dyn Brein " , "Tee Foar Twa " and " Do Bist Nimmen Oant Ien Fan Dy Haldt " .... ( The Windmills of Your Mind , Tea For Two and You're Nobody Till Somebody Loves You )

But I drew the line at "Myn Wei ".

By Martin Gardner

A poem after my own heart, from a book of poems selected by Jack Prelutsky. This one is dedicated to gigglers everywhere, who will know how impossible it is to stop once started. I'm sure the potatoes mentioned in the verses were ones that ended in somebody's soup, if not ours.

The Giggles

A giggler gets the giggles
at every little thing -
a puppy dog that sneezes,
a cow that tries to sing.

She giggles at an elephant,
she giggles at a toad,
she giggles if a baby duck
waddles down a road.

She giggles if a teacher asks
if two and two make four.
At lunch she giggles if she spills
potatoes on the floor.

When Mother sat on Daddy's hat
she giggled till she cried.
I think she ate a feather that
is tickling her inside!

Monday, 15 February 2010

Young love

On May 23 the first  one of grandchildren is to be married in a magnificent ceremony at the Basilica in Bardstown. For Valentine;s day this year her fiancee took her into the city for a romantic candlelit dinner at one of the most exquisite restaurant in the city. When they got there he realized he had forgotten his wallet. He looked in the car and in all his pockets and told her they would just have to return back home. They had dressed to the nines. When they got back home, he had hired a professional chef and catering service and they were preparing dinner at her home. The catering service had moved all the furniture in the living room and transformed it into a candlelit dining room complete with fresh flowers and a  violinist. The trip into the city was a ploy to surprise her and give the chef time to prepare the meal in her own kitchen. He is a sweetheart.

Sunday, 14 February 2010

Love, probably

I saw a man and woman crossing the street one day this week. They were about sixty-five and walking hand in hand. He looked like the sort of man who had been a letter carrier until retirement. She looked like the sort of woman who worked in a care home or a nursery school. They looked so happy as they crossed the street, hands swinging together. He smiled down at her from his considerable height. She gazed up at him, head bent right back. They looked like newlyweds; a couple in the first, hot flush of infatuation, eyes only for one another. The two of them were dressed entirely in black leather. He wore a cowboy hat, Australian style, and black leather pants and jacket. She wore a black fisherman's cap, black pants and jacket. Both of them wore big, white, puffy running shoes. They looked quite goofy and were completely oblivious to the traffic that had stopped to let them cross.

I watched them for about a minute. Whoever they were, they were utterly in the moment.

It was beautiful.

Fridge Soup, Wedding . . .

  . .  soup!  BBCTV's popular chef, James Martin, accompanied by the one-and-only Ken Hom, showed us how to prepare "smoked pork" soup, also known as "Wedding Soup" . .  well, it sure sounds like a whole yummy, one-level-up-from-delicious awesome wedding breakfast in one bowl!  If you're trying to lose weight . . DO NOT CLICK . . and if you must click . . .


(Note:  James Martin referred throughout the broadcast to "Swiss" wedding soup, but nearly all Google hits suggest Italian origins.)

Animal, Vegetable or Mineral?

Animal (check the link) in this case and who'd have thought!!!! An intrusion of cockroaches, a business of ferrets and a skein of geese!

Protecting my hair from myself

Long, long ago, in The Days Of Twiggy . . . 

. . . I gave myself a haircut using an electric razor and a hand mirror reflecting the back of my head into the bathroom mirror. As I worked I kept liking my creation more and more . . . all layery, yet sleek.
Until I tried to even up my nape. Then it got worse and worser.
By the time my shaking hands wrapped the cord around the tool to put it away, the lower curve of the back of my skull was visible.  
I have been careful not to [often] repeat such a tonsorial exercise.

Three days ago I used my kitchen scissors to trim (chop, hack) off the "wings" that were growing at the sides of my face.  From the front my hair looks much better than before my inspiration. 
I look, in fact, pretty good!
I have a haircut appointment this morning at ten.  Yesterday I tried to change it, because I have other things I would rather do, but I can't get a Saturday appointment for another month. That's too long:  I have had a bite of that old apple. 
By Tuesday, if I didn't keep this morning's appointment, I would be Very Sorry.
This is the wrong time of year to have a cold neck.

Saturday, 13 February 2010


I love sweetpeas and grow two long rows of them, each about 10 ft.  For the first time I tried to get ahead of myself in the autumn and sowed some Sarah Raven seeds given to me by a friend.  All have been polished off by mice with expensive tastes.
Anyone any idea if I can sow some more now or would you wait until it is warmer?

Sorry, not a blog really!

Is There a Hobo in Your Fridge?

Learn all about this U.S delicacy at HOBO SOUP.

A can canned in 1953 was recently auctioned on eBay, and judged "delicious"!  There's loads of wonderful stuff about this wonderful stuff out there on t'Net.  Just Google "Hobo Soup"  No sous chef or soup chef should be without a tin or two. And isn't that an awesome label? (Pass the can opener!)

Thursday, 11 February 2010

Outside the bunker: surveying the ruins

Any resemblance to any person, living or dead, is entirely intentional.....

My son received this photo taken by a friend, who had spotted this strangely-familiar looking cat in Brixton, and sent it to me. He added:.

"Perhaps surveying the ruins of Berlin, frail, confused
and alone, his empire reduced to rubble, the Allies on his doorstep,
his generals defected or dead, the true scale of his gargantuan folly
weighing unbearably down upon him. What course is left, then, but that
of suicide. Berlin, May 2nd, 1945, transposed to Brixton, The Other
Day, 2010."

Yes,yes I know you’re sick of these…




This IS the Cote d’Azur and THAT is an olive tree. 

I’m on the phone with Vancouver right now. 

Wednesday, 10 February 2010

Snow, snow. No snow?

As much snow as we have shoveled and it is still snowing here, it is so ironic to see Canada have to bring snow in. In such a huge endeavor as the  Olympic Games, I guess one has to expect an little manifestation of Murphy's Law.

The Strangest Duet Ever?

Jinsky eMailed this virtuoso piece to me.  I tracked it down to YouTube
The Fridge Soup posts column isn't quite wide enough to show the clip properly, so follow the link above. Wonderful stuff! And quite funny.
(NOTE! The pic is a still from the video. To PLAY the clip, use the YouTube link)

This Must Have Been Written For Fridge Soup!

Deep in Our Refrigerator

by Jack Prelutsky

Deep in our refrigerator,
there's a special place
for food that's been around awhile . . .
we keep it, just in case.
“It's probably too old to eat,”
my mother likes to say.
“But I don't think it's old enough
for me to throw away.”

It stays there for a month or more
to ripen in the cold,
and soon we notice fuzzy clumps
of multicolored mold.
The clumps are larger every day,
we notice this as well,
but mostly what we notice
is a certain special smell.

When finally it all becomes
a nasty mass of slime,
my mother takes it out, and says,
“Apparently, it's time.”
She dumps it in the garbage can,
though not without regret,
then fills the space with other food
that's not so ancient yet


Like most small children, the powers of invention have not passed our three year old granddaughter by. She loves nothing more than writing the script ‘on the hoof’ and roping in all innocent by-standers, regardless of their acting ability.

She makes no distinction between dolls, relatives and imaginary beings. They are all constituent parts of a great cast in an epic production.

A couple of days ago, the scene was set for scaring the life out of a hapless doll called Tinkerbell. I wasn’t quite sure what my role was, so I asked the director for guidance. She waved a hand, which I took as an instruction to improvise. So I placed a tea towel over another doll’s head and moved towards Tinkerbell, making whoooohh, whooohing noises.

“What are you doing Grandad?”

“I’ve made a ghost, and it’s after Tinkerbell. Whooohhh.”

“Don’t be silly Grandad, we can’t have a ghost. We’re not in the jungle!”

Of course we weren’t. How silly of me. Back to drama class then.

Hey honey, did you just fa……?

A new  supermarket opened in Bozeman, Montana. It has an automatic water mister to keep the produce fresh. Just before it goes on, you hear the distant sound of thunder and the smell of fresh rain.

When you pass the milk cases, you hear cows mooing and you experience  the scent of fresh cut hay. In the meat department there is the aroma of charcoal grilled steaks and brats. In the liquor department, the aroma of  fine wine. When you approach the egg case, you hear hens cluck and cackle and the air is filled with the pleasing aroma of bacon and eggs frying. The bread department features the tantalizing smell of fresh baked bread & cookies.

I don't buy toilet paper there anymore.


email author unknown

Tuesday, 9 February 2010

Garden To Let


'Established is a good word, much used in garden books,
'The plant, when established'. . . . 
Oh, become established quickly, quickly, garden!
For I am fugitive. I am very fugitive -

Those that come after me will gather these roses,
And watch, as I do now, the white wistaria
Burst, in the sunshine, from its pale green sheath.
Planted. Planted. Established. Then neglected,
Till at last the loiterer by the gate will wonder
At the old, old cottage, the old wooden cottage.

And say, 'One might have build here, the view is glorious,
This must have been a pretty garden once.'

Mary Ursula Bethell

Monday, 8 February 2010

Saturday Night , Sunday Morning

Sonata : Someone cycled past , singing a last rousing chorus of "Lang zal hij leven " at three in the morning . Half awake , I remembered I hadn't wound the alarm up . Hand out , blindly groping for the clock . Crank , crank , crank . and I fell back on the pillow , out like the proverbial light once more .

Which is why I sat in the kitchen at seven yesterday morning , grumpily drinking tea , while everyone else in town enjoyed their Sunday morning lie-in .

Sunday, 7 February 2010

Vignettes of French Life (No. 1 in a series)

Went for a nice long walk this morning in the Provencal countryside, with lovely views of the snowy far-off Alps, the glittering Mediterranean, and this. 
Torched cars are a dime a dozen on the back roads of Provence.  They are rarely removed, and presumably the cold case file for stolen cars just gets thicker and thicker.  
But what I want to know is:  isn’t just stealing the damn things enough fun?

Go Figure!

Even in the idyllic countryside hereabouts, there lurks a neighbour who is on a mission. In a nearby side-road, parking can be a problem for those with no drive or garage. So, the owners park in a responsible way (not blocking access and facing with the flow of the traffic) on the road itself.

Our aforementioned neighbour has taken exception to this practice, even though he has a garage and parking spaces for two cars on his own property. To thwart the efforts of those desperate for a parking space on the road outside his house, he leaves his driveway empty and parks his two cars on the road.

I suppose there must be a name for the logical process that seeks to stop cars from parking in front of one's house, by parking cars in front of one's house?

Saturday, 6 February 2010

Think About It...

"Sarcasm is the lowest form of wit" she said, sarcastically.

Things I want to know

How come 'abbreviation' is such a long word?

How come chocolate is addictive, but cabbage isn't?  Where is the justice?

How come, most of the time, my printer refuses to print just one sheet without being cajoled to behave itself, but when I ask it to print sixty, it won't stop when I realise I only meant six?

How come I forget what I wanted when I get to the top of the stairs, and then remember at the EXACT moment my foot hits the bottom stair?  Why do I never remember on the middle stair?

How come teenagers can't hear the words 'pick up the towel' but can hear the words 'oh, that's more money in my pay packet than I was expecting'?

Alliteration Sunday

Friko founds The Fridge,
Fame and fortune follow?
Fortunately fantasy!

Here's looking at you Kids!
 We will return with  our snippets, left-overs and juicy morsels, thanks for the opportunity Friko!

Cats 1, humans nil

First there was this and now there's this:


Took a while...

Fed up with forever finding debris from cats' feet in the dog's water bowl, I bought two of these clever self-topping-up water dispensers.

Not being overly bright, it took me some time, and a lot of spilled water, before I worked out how to fill them. We didn't do much science in my school..

Let's see how long it takes the cats to try paddling in these mini-ponds.

Friday, 5 February 2010

Birds ?

I can do Birds, Mark

Is my lunch ready yet??

Twice a week my favourite Belgian corners me to discuss the menus for the next few days; who's going to cook what for lunch and dinner. This is fine, eliminating both waste and standing in front of the fridge at 6PM wondering what the hell to cobble together for supper. But cooked lunches???
Even after all the time we've been doing this, I am still bugged by the expectation, as mutual as it may be, that I have to interrupt my day right in the middle to cook and SIT DOWN to eat.

Today was leftovers. Easy. Quick.

But for some reason I've been doing most of the cooking this week, and apparently still haven't learned how to do it for two.

The Long And The Short Of It

Short and sweet
can be a treat
but too long can get boring;
It may send readers all to sleep
with much stentorian snoring!

Too long

What the fridge (euphemism)! I thought they were supposed to be short! The posts are mostly longer than many of the posts on my original blog and then there are all the comments. I'll be spending so much time eating soup that I won't be able to read anybody else's blog or write on my own! Oh, but what an audience I'd get here! Now I have to come up with something funny or I might get voted out. My son tells me I have to learn to multi-task but alas I'm afraid I'll always be a serial tasker although I often interrupt one task to start another...

Thursday, 4 February 2010

Greetings from Florida

Why time flies for them. You know them, those old folks.

While listening to NPR recently, I heard discussed why time seems to pass quicker as one gets older than when we are young. Do you remember, that is if Elusive Lucy hasn't moved in with you, how summer seemed to last forever when you were young? It seemed to stretch on and on and on. But school seemed to just dray.
The research being done says that the first few times we experience something we really like, such as birthday parties, swims at the pool or river or in fact something we really like, it takes more brain cells to store that in our memory banks. As years go by and experiences are repeated, even though we enjoy them, it takes less cells to store that. Well just think what would happen to a mind into the 70's if no new or fun experiences  are having to be recorded. So we all need to have  new experiences, (I want to para-sail but my kids won't let me. They and they only are afraid I will get hurt.)
We need to learn new things. If you can learn something brand new, you do not have alzheimers.
I thought the soup needed some more salt and pepper.

Ashes to Ashes

"The government's last crackdown secured a 25% drop in the number of smokers. Now it wants to cut that number in half again. What a long way we've come since footballers sneaked a crafty fag at half-time, 
said The Guardian yesterday.

I am sitting in a Restaurant at lunchtime, over a bowl of pasta, minding my own business and reading my new book, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, when I become aware of a woman, seemingly well-dressed (I only see her back) loitering in front of the large window, apparently waiting for somebody. A few minutes later I look up and see that an ash-grey cloud has appeared around her head. She turns her head slightly, and I see her sucking on a cigarette. I use the word 'sucking' deliberately. The cloud is now billowing  without a break, these are no pretty little cumulus puffs, this is a storm cloud. There is a desperate need, a greed and a bit of embarrassment in this cloud.

Okay, frankly, I am now staring. The woman finishes her cigarette, drops it on the ground, and enters  the Restaurant, to re-join her lunch partner and continue her meal.

The first time Beloved wanted to give up the habit, many years ago, he saw an ad in the paper for an aid to stopping smoking. He duly sent off his coupon, cheque included, - in today's money about £20 -.
A small parcel arrived in due course, containing a kind of plastic hollow stick, cigarette shaped, tasteless, flavourless, free of any kind of visible value. He was so disgusted at his own stupidity, he threw the thing away, and gave up out of spite.

I haven't smoked for over 20 years.

Beauty. And the Beasts.

I've been reading about synesthesia. When I did a James Brown split and broke my ankle I could see/feel a dark gray-blue cloud billowing above me as I sat on the floor and rocked with the pain.
It seems to me that:
  • There is a certain bird call that is thin flat vertical silver bars.
  • The aroma of vanilla is egg shaped and is the color of browning butter.
  • Powdery soapy smells are varying shades of blue. Shalimar is cobalt. Baby powder is ice blue.
I found an online test and answered the questions.  The result is that I am not a synesthete, which I find disappointing.

The scene was a gathering of Husband's mother and aunts. And me. The conversation was about simple recipes. One was called Garbage Bread. Another was called Dump Cake. 
The aunt who was the dark horse, the outcast of the family, and not at all coincidentally, the one other non-blood relative in the group looked on, her upper lip raised, her eyebrows in a deep V above the bridge of her nose.
"Garbage bread! Dump cake! You people gotta get better names!"

Wednesday, 3 February 2010

10 Guaranteed Fail Tips for Telemarketers and other Unknown Callers

1. Let the first thing out of your mouth be an incomplete interrogative as to your call-ee's identity without having yourself provided this courtesy in advance. As in "'Allo? Madame Machinchouette....???"

2. Feign confusion when call-ee responds politely with 'You have reached the Machinchouette household, yes", and fail to recognize that the call-ee has confirmed you have the right number without giving away any further information, including the name she goes by.

3. Repeat original question with higher uptick.

4. Respond to call-ee's courteous request for your own identity by providing, in a superior tone, only your title and surname without further elaboration as to the reason for your call.

5. Rephrase original question now complete with object, subject, verb etc., delivering new version in a tone which suggests the call-ee has been put on the stand with a Bible in her right hand.

6. Fail to recognize that your call-ee's cooperation is most unlikely unless you change both your tone and approach.

7. Be so utterly ignorant of the dynamics of social intercourse as to expect a polite response to an unequivocal demand to speak directly to Madame M., since you now suspect the call-ee might only be the cleaning lady.

8. Decline to reveal the reason for your call as it is a personal matter.

9. Having said that, ask to speak to Monsieur M. thereby implying that despite the confidential nature of your call, you would be prepared to speak to anyone at all, provided their last name is Machinchouette.

10. Respond with thinly disguised sarcasm to the call-ee's suggestion that, should contact with Monsieur M. be absolutely necessary, you call back later. As in 'Madame, you are much too kind. I would be more than happy to do that.'

Tuesday, 2 February 2010

Recipe for fridge soup

Fridge Soup


One fridge
Herbs and spices
Salt and pepper
Fresh chicken stock
A very very big pan
A very very big spoon
Garlic croutons


Put pan on cooker.  (Phone osteopath for appointment.)  Fetch ladder.  Climb ladder with fridge.  Put fridge in pan.  (Phone osteopath back and bring appointment forward.)   Climb down.  Climb up again holding herbs, spices, salt and pepper.  Climb down again to pick up herbs, spices, salt and pepper from floor.  (Phone neighbour for assistance.)  With neighbour holding ladder, climb up again and add herbs, spices, salt and pepper to pan.  Climb down again.  (Phone doctor for vertigo check-up.)  Climb up again with jug of chicken stock.  Pour into pan.   Look at chicken stock to find it barely covers bottom of pan.  Fetch hosepipe from garden.  Fix to tap.  Climb ladder with hosepipe.  Add sixty-three pints of water to pan.  Climb down to fetch very very big spoon.  Climb back up ladder with spoon.  Climb back down.  Fix ladder extension to enable access to pan with spoon from higher up.  Climb back up.  Climb back down, wearing ceiling tile round neck.  Ask neighbour to help you extract ceiling tile from neck.  Climb up again to top of ladder.  Stir soup.  Climb down again.  Leave soup to simmer until fridge is cooked* to your liking, then garnish with parsley and garlic croutons before serving.

*Results may vary.

Rudyard Kipling

I keep six honest serving-men;
(They taught me all I knew)
Their names are What and Where and When
And How and Why and Who.
I send them over land and sea,
I send them east and west; 
But after they have worked for me,
I give them all a rest.

I let them rest from nine till five
For I am busy then,
As well as breakfast, lunch and tea,
For they are hungry men:
But different folk have different views:
I know a person small--
She keeps ten million serving men,
Who get no rest at all!
She sends 'em abroad on her own affairs,
From the second she opens her eyes--
One million Hows, two million Wheres,
And seven million Whys!

Sand, sea and...

... Salute to the Sun soup.

This is by way of a test post....

The teeny tent cowering beneath the giant luxury sensible tents on a Bahamas beach belongs to my friend L, who arrived two days ago for a month of intensive yoga training in the ashram there. Her blog posts are heartrending. Images of boot camp for bendy people come to mind. She has been reduced to miming the chanting that goes on for hours, and her tent is full of ants, leaving even less space for her.

If I could, I would take a posse and go and rescue her; as it is, I'm planning to send her a Red Cross-type parcel of chocolate, although I suspect that she won't be allowed to have it, because that would be too too pleasant. I can only hope for L's sake that Stockholm Syndrome kicks in quickly.


Calling all Cooks

If you have a fridge or freezer full of left-overs posts,  if you have ingredients for only half a post,  if you want to test the waters prior to running with a blogging post, if you have an idea,  a picture, or a collection of all of the above, then this is the place to off-load them.

This blog is meant to become a repository for  items which are usually filed under 'miscellaneous'.

Preferred ingredients are, in no particular order, and preferably more than one at a time:

prose and poetry, happy or sad or just quirky,
about anything that catches your attention,

interesting photos or artwork,

funnies, jokes, gags,





or anything that I can't think of right now, 
which you could remind me of, as the pot gets simmering.

What we don't want is anything that's 'off', nothing mouldy, rotten, long beyond its sell-by-date. Let's be nice to each other and the stockpot.

Would those who have said they'd like to get into the kitchen and whose email address is not on their blogs, please email me. For the time being I'd like to keep the site for members only. 

WARNING: I am an IT novice, there will probably be many things I get wrong, bear with me, please, and if you know better, actually know what you are doing, then teach me!