Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Forbidden fruit

I brought a pomegranate home. I couldn't remember what it tasted like.

Using a knife, I cut the hard shell into pieces and sucked out the plump, sweet seeds. It reminded me of eating lobster, but even messier.

Like a gruesome scene from Dexter, the cut fruit lies in a pool of its own...juice.

I totally gorged out on this treat. Only the carcass and my stained cutting board remain.

Monday, November 22, 2010


Rocked by a feeling (fresh-off-the-boat)
she clings to the side
blue eyes closed to inhale the
heavy air in this ancient port
strange smells and noises
weaving into the night
for reasons tingling and exotic

Here, there
at cafés on busy streets
wine and words flow
like electric currents
joining together
puzzle pieces of a place
She jumps in with a smile
as wide as the Red Sea
Je voudrais des escargots, s’il vous plait
trying on the foreign
playing with playing
la femme fatale or maybe
the sensitive come-from-away

Until a fisherman with almond eyes
shines the light of history
worn smooth and beige as an oyster’s pearl:
We don’t speak French here anymore
just a few words with the tourists

Tres drôle, she muses
plucking snails from their shells with a fork
how did she get here?
is the fog to blame
or did she shipwreck herself
in the roar of the conch
clutched too closely to her ear

Monday, November 15, 2010

Martinis are from Mars

I read an article today on how to make chocolate martinis using a bottle of vodka, Mars chocolate bars and a freezer. Forget that 3-day bartending class you snoozed through during that summer in university; martini mixing is now as easy as combining over-the-counter chocolate bars with cheap vodka, and marinating the mixture in your freezer. Hallelujah!

Well, sort of. Here's the thing: while the DIY method sounds perfect for lazy, fun-loving people like us, it does require something special. And that special something is patience. Read on for the saucy details:

1. First, make room in the bottle by dumping out some of the contents.

Did I catch you emptying the bottle by drinking its contents in the style of teenager-meets-milk-carton? Oh no you didn't! Dude, it's only Monday, find yourself a hobby. But before you waste your time with other hobbies, find a spare container and pour about 1/5 of the vodka into it. For this 750 ml bottle, that means 150 ml in an unused coffee jar. From alcomahol to caffeine. Yeah, it's all peaks and valleys around here at RTTK.

2. Use your gravitational pull to draw in all available Mars bars (about 5-6 bars).

I used 5.

3. Chop chop.

Find a knife and chop up the bars. The pieces need to be small enough to slip through the bottle neck, so mince away. Then try - just try - to refrain from gobbling the pieces. (You can do it. I believe in you.) Question: is the end of a chocolate bar called the heel?

4. Feed the bear.

Mmmm, appetizing!

That's right, you're going to feed the teensy pieces of chocolate through the bottle neck. You may feel like you're working in Frankenstein's laboratory, stuffing minced body parts into test tubes of formaldehyde, especially if you're doing this at night after watching a Romero zombie flick the night before, but worry not, you're in the comfort of your own home, so try to persevere.

Tightly cap the bottle, give it a good shake, then find a home for it in your freezer. Let the mixture marinate for 2 weeks, giving the booze ample time to break down the chocolate and caramel. Check the bottle every day, shake it and turn it over if it's lying on its side. At about the two week mark, invite a friend over for a taste test. If it's delicious, call over a few more friends. Better yet, call me!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

White stripes

Pinotte's award-winning owl impression.

Note his white & ginger striped tail. He was a creamsicle in a previous life.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Hogs and hot nog

I've been wrapped up in life details like a pig in a feed blanket, and haven't been running or cooking. I haven't even ingested anything unusual, save for an eggnog latte on Sunday, which wouldn't score highly on a list of weird foods.

"Turn up the sizzle on that heat lamp, Chuck."

The latte was my first foray into the hot nog realm. I enjoyed the adventure, but I do prefer egg nog cold with cinnamon and a liberal shot of rum. Could be accompanied by a plate of waffles, cheesy christmas music in the air, and a full table of satisfied eaters.

Friday, November 5, 2010


My first outdoor run after getting sick and existing on pause was very fun. I ran along sidewalks and tried to avoid soggy leaves and puddles for 45 minutes. I listened to a collection of punk tunes downloaded from a colleague's collection. I didn't know that punk songs are always short and sometimes intertextual, as in they parody or pay homage to other songs, sometimes in different genres. They are also very funny: I heard a cover of Dolly Parton's "Jolene" sang by a male ("Jolene / Jolene / Please don't take him just because you can") without any hint of gay signals (not that I'd recognize them, I guess). Not many bands would be brave enough in their subversivity (I just made that up) to do the same. I played the frenetic songs at an ear-blistering volume level and resisted urges to play chicken with cars in the rainy darkness. Me First and the Gimme Gimmes would surely rage on such restraint.

Adventures with pintos
Chillaxing in the bath with onion & bay leaves

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Future fibre

As a young child, my sister often recited a Shel Silverstein poem that began, "I remembered to put on my shirt / I remembered to put on my shoes." Thereafter followed a list of clothing items he had remembered, luckily. By the end of the poem, you'd believe a b&w an image of his pants could be seen on future CIBC envelopes like beloved children gone missing. For tonite's spin class, I remembered my shirt and pants but not the vitally-important towel for sweat soak ups; knowing how necessary the towel is, I considered leaving. I stayed, and chose a spin bike that happened to sit beside a side door that just happened to be flung open by a warm participant after the class started. The cool breezes that flowed in whisked away most of my socially-undesireable persp and left my face dry (I could make a fortune on salt remnants, though).

~ Just what will happen to these soaked pintos? ~

Check back later!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

They don't love you (like I love you)

Knead foreign bodies
Blood stains thin veins and lifelines
Let sleeping thorns lie.

American cheese on Bavarian rye & a French kiss of Asian hot sauce

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

We all scream

It's November, and now that Betsy has retired her bike seat for the winter, I'll be occasionally walking to work and seeing the neighborhood at a more leisurely pace. We had frost last night so I dug out a pair of mitts and followed the sidewalk to work, the grass on both sides flattened and white. The air was cold and still. The sun was golden, and the wide sky, high above the snarling traffic, pastel crayons released from their box and spread across the horizon; a smear of baby blues, pinks and peaches; light and surreal and unattainable.