-scale=1.0,maximum-scale=1.0" : "width=1100"' name='viewport'/> Plum Street Chili

Friday, July 24, 2015


Fra Angelico
I am not entirely sure where I am. I know how I got here. I spent a lot of time singing. I like it here.

I spend a lot of time dancing. It may be Hell. If so, Hell is dancing to your own music. And the occasional Snake appears. Who knew.

I keep baker's hours. Snoring at nine and up at three ante meridian. My front step is on the pavement. What happens on the street happens twelve feet from my desk. Dawn happening. Peace.

I began to feel vibrations in the ether. Maria de los Dolores passing: earrings flashing, bracelets clashing, accompanying cherubs jiggy jigging. I am fond of Lola because she is the only woman I ever met who is louder and crazier than I am. I find that soothing. Everyone else runs.

Lola starts her circuit around ten o'clock most days. Big disturbance in the pattern means big news. It is the Cherubs. Little fuckers tell her everything. So I opened my door.

"What?" I said.
"Baby Dee is dead. You got a stamp? Give me fifty cents and I get my own stamp."

Baby Dee and I, we had a thing. Knees. I would hobble around to the bodega on my (I can still walk and get my own coffee) mission every morning 7 a.m. On bad days, Dee would hug me this hug that saved me every bad time. Dee ruined his knee being a running back. Baby Dee saw people. He would stop detailing some Cadillac and hug the fucking pain out of me. I am like a child. I thought it was forever. I can walk now and Baby Dee is gone to Jesus.

Lola jiggy jigged away, news delivered and a dollar richer. I went inside, dazed and amazed.

to be continued

Aesop's Fables

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

LOOSIES - Update

NEW YORK — The family of Eric Garner and civil rights advocate Al Sharpton on Tuesday urged that charges be brought in Garner's chokehold death, saying the $5.9 million settlement with the city did not provide justice in the case.
Friday will mark one year since Garner, 43, died in a confrontation with police officers on Staten Island. The city announced the settlement Monday. No one has been charged in the case.
- USA Today,
I hate it when I get anywhere near to agreeing with Rand Paul. Guy always looks like he has been sleeping off a three day drunk in his car. Bear with me, please.

It is true that cigarette taxes are bad law as Rand Paul asserts. We disagree about why these taxes are bad law.

Cigarette taxes are bad law for ordinary folks - never mind "dangerous" for the police. Fuck the police. 

Eric Garner was a small business owner. A old school capitalist. He sold single cigarettes, called loosies in the Hood, for profit.

A pack of cigarettes is so expensive due to taxes. Your basic working person and everyday street person cannot afford a whole pack at one time or has to make one pack last a week. Sometimes you just have to have a cigarette. And there on the corner stood Eric Garner ready, willing and not all that able. 

Taxes run government. The Suits decided to tax the shit out of cigarettes and thereby tax the shit out of addicts and working folks rather than tax the pusher Corpos and Wall Street. Naturally the nanny Progressives cheered. All that second hand smoke irritated their eyes, no doubt.

The working classes as a whole who smoke are being farmed for money to run government services just like Ferguson was being farmed for tax money to run government. Every man a profit center. 

I think there is plenty of blame to go around for the death of Eric Garner, right and left.

Selling loosies is not a capital offense. It is an interracial occupation in Philly. Whole damn murder was a matter of CLASS not race. This time. On second thought, it is a race and a class and a poverty thing.

"If Eric Garner had been selling naked credit default swaps instead of cigarettes – if in other words he'd set up a bookmaking operation in which passersby could bet on whether people made their home mortgage payments or companies paid off their bonds – the police by virtue of a federal law called the Commodity Futures Modernization Act would have been barred from even approaching him."
Matt Taibbi

I love it when the real world agrees with me. Agreement tells me I am sane. These days I need all the reassurance I can get.

Michigan makes up for its budget shortfall after cutting corporate taxes by taxing people who smoke and drink more! Chad Livengood reports:
Revenue from so-called sin taxes on tobacco, beer, wine and liquor totaled $290.5 million in the 2014 fiscal year, more than twice the $137.6 million net income taxes paid by Michigan businesses after receiving $768.8 million in refunds from tax credits, a Detroit News analysis of tax data shows.
Since Gov. Rick Snyder and lawmakers delivered sweeping tax relief for businesses in 2011, net business income taxes dropped 90 percent, depleting the state's main operating fund of $1.33 billion, according to state revenue data.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Monkey Business

This is worth watching. Never underestimate the humanity of animals. Or vice versa.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Sign of the Month - July 2015 - Socialist Snow

Go Bernie!  It's your birthday. Go Bernie!

Burlington Snow written for Bernie Sanders by Allen Ginsberg
Socialist snow on the streets
Socialist talk in the Maverick bookstore
Socialist kids sucking socialist lollipops
Socialist poetry in socialist mouths
—aren’t the birds frozen socialists?
Aren’t the snowclouds blocking the airfield
Social Democratic Appeasement?
Isn’t the socialist sky owned by
the socialist sun?
Earth itself socialist, forests, rivers, lakes
furry mountains, socialist salt
in oceans?
Isn’t this poem socialist? It doesn’t
belong to me anymore.

Friday, July 3, 2015

TRUMP gets served at Nick's Place

There once was a blowhard named Trump
Who went on the political stump.
But the man's evil vision
Led to hair cut derision
And the view his head's up his rump.

Click for more Meathead Portraits

Bernie is going to be POTUS and this is the reason. - OMG GOP WTF?

You do not even have to listen to the words. Just watch the faces. Watch Greenspan sneer. Watch the legislative assistant laugh. Watch Greenspan's weasel words when he is made to confront his abject failure.

Oh Mr. Greenspan, what a surprise it is that people steal. Who woulda thunk it? Anybody with common sense would have known people steal. My Dad would have been better than you at handling the economy.

Get it that Republicans are still peddling 'trickle down' economics and 'deregulation.' Republicans are still bankrupting states. Bernie told them off in 2003. Go, Bernie, go!

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Going to Mass with Walter - Real Philadelphia

The last time a fellow Catholic evangelized me into going back into a Roman Catholic Church, the priest's homily was "AIDS is the punishment for being homosexual." That was a long time ago. To say that I am a lapsed Catholic is understatement. Funerals. That is it.

My friend and neighbor Walter is an 86 year old Catholic of Pennsylvania Dutch and Sicilian heritage. I think he is gay and in the closet for a lifetime. His partner died last year. Walter walks everywhere and knows everybody.

Walter seduced me into going to Mass again at St. John Cantius. How? He offered me Polish festival food. I like Walter a lot. When I moved into Plum Hovel he was the first neighbor to befriend me. I need stuffed cabbage and pirogis made by Polish Mamas like a drunkard needs his booze. My Mama the Polka Queen lives in South Carolina.

The festival food was divine. I had a huge stuffed cabbage, a potato pancake, a bottle of Yeungling Beer and a brief flirtation with one of the handsomest old Polish guys I ever saw. I even enjoyed Mass. Walter got an 'atta boy' from the Priest for bringing me.

Old excommunicated me sang Amazing Grace loud. I did not remember any of the responses. I just let the familiar words roll over me, refused to say the mumbo jumbo and enjoyed myself. I thought I would freak out. Seriously. Instead the words of the Mass were a happy soothing return to my childhood.

It was all good. As we walked to the bus through the spotless geranium bedecked neighborhood that looks like Europe, Walter said "You know what is so great about this neighborhood? Not one black or brown face. It is clean. Not one piece of trash. And it is safe." I said "Uh hah. Ummm. You don't say?" in appropriate places.

Walter lives with me on the wild side amid messy soft drink trash on the sidewalks and black and brown faces. And the Teen who had serious mental health issues, was vandalizing the neighborhood, hitting people and is now in jail. And whole bunches of great happy children. And fun block parties. At this party I learned that Miss Norma had sexual congress with Miss Antoinette. Whoa. And I got too drunk on Krupnik. I love the buffet of good Dominican cooking at the bodega. I see Walter at the bodega often.

I am going back to Mass again with Walter. Even though there will be no pirogis. I am on a remember the Catholic Church quest.

I am not going to fight with Walter because he is a bigot. He is 86 years old. I am just going to give thanks for my messy happy neighborhood. I will take juicy over dry and creatively messy over obsessively neat anytime.

I Troll the Internet

I am retired. I have nothing and no one to do. Why do I troll? Because I can. 

I hang out on the message boards.  Lots of evangelical Christians comment there. They have great screen names like LordJesusYourGod and HeHasRisen752. Some of them are Fruit Loops. And then, there is Marilyn.

Marilyn's message is that oral and anal sex are The Original Sin of Adam. Marilyn quoted the Bible and used the word "fornicate" 6 times. I love the word fornicate. It is so euphonious. Say it loud. Say it proud. So I fired back with A Little Ditty for Marilyn:

Fornicate! Fornicate!
Who gave us this sex so great?
It's God.

As I do the in and out,
I have oft been known to shout:
Oh God.

A couple of hours later, when they let Marilyn use the computer in the day room again, she left me another message with more Bible quotes and the word fornication in all CAPITALS and boldface. So I broke out in song again:

I am still under your spell.
And if I could speak,
What an erotic tale I could tell.
Of a screw that I have not forgotten,
Of a screw that keeps the silent magic in FORNICATION for me.

I went to get a cup of coffee, came back to the computer, and there was another message from Marilyn. More Bible quotes. And this time the word fornication was in all CAPITALS, bold, italic and bright red. So I wrote back:

It was fornication, I know.
That was what was making my HooHoo glow.
It was up and down.
It was front and back,
I felt my legs go slackety slack, Dear. 

I thought it was just some mishap,
When his wife found her way to my shack.
Oops, a big fat gun!
Damn, I had to run!
I escaped out the backety back, Dear.

The wage of Trolling is guilt. Marilyn never wrote again. I am so going to Hell.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Art Deco and More at the New York Public Library

I found the New York Public Library Digital Collections. What a great resource for everyone. 

"The site is a living database with new materials added every day, featuring prints, photographs, maps, manuscripts, streaming video, and more."

The images come from the Collections for Designers - Ornament and Pattern: Pre Victorian to Art Deco. 

The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Art & Architecture Collection, The New York Public Library. "1. Foliage; 2. Foliage; 3. Flowers and foliage" The New York Public Library Digital Collections.

The material in the collections is a treasure chest of graphic and abstract design. I spent a long time just poking about and I have not exhausted the resource yet.

The provenance of the abstract Tulips.

The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Art & Architecture Collection, The New York Public Library. "[Multicolor tulip shapes; on purple field.]" The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1930.

The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Art & Architecture Collection, The New York Public Library. "Cretonne imprimée." The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1926. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47e2-ae3e-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99

Friday, June 26, 2015

Toxic Religion #3 - How to recognize a toxic religionist on the hoof on the plains of daily life.

We are not the dogs of God but his children. Prophetic religion has to do with relationships, not observances, with awe not belief, with love not guilt, with life not property, With the Way not moralism. Obedience to the Way is indeed of great use if it is freely given, but of no use if it is compelled. - Herrymon Maurer
I said elsewhere Brother Lawrence of the Resurrection aka Nicholas Hermann of Lorraine would serve as our example of a spiritually realized human being. His "rule for a happy life" is so full of good orderly direction that it survives in print from 1600 although Brother Lawrence was probably functionally illiterate. He could cypher as he managed the stores and kitchens of a large monastery. I do not believe he could write.

Brother Lawrence did everything right. He had a direct hot flash experience of God.
“That in the winter, seeing a tree stripped of its leaves, and considering that within a little time, the leaves would be renewed, and after that the flowers and fruit appear, he received a high view of the Providence and Power of GOD, which has never since been effaced from his soul. That this view had perfectly set him loose from the world, and kindled in him such a love for GOD, that he could not tell whether it had increased in above forty years that he had lived since.”
He gave us a clear and lucid description of the mechanics of meditation that anyone, theist or non theist, can understand and utilize. Here is a bit:
“Do not be discouraged by the resistance you will encounter from your human nature; you must go against your human inclinations. Often, in the beginning, you will think that you are wasting time, but you must go on, be determined and persevere in it until death, despite all the difficulties.” 
Brother Lawrence spent little time thinking of the sins of others.
“That as for the miseries and sins he heard of daily in the world, he was so far from wondering at them, that, on the contrary, he was surprised that there were not more, considering the malice sinners were capable of; that for his part he prayed for them; but knowing that GOD could remedy the mischiefs they did when He pleased, he gave himself no farther trouble.”
This devout man nevertheless stated that the biggest impediment to growth in the love of God was the fear that he should be damned. He retained that fear for years in spite of his devout life and service.

If you disagree with a religious zealot, the first thing they do is try to convict you of sin because you are not ideologically pure. You are not perfectly obedient. They represent this behavior as loving care for your immortal soul.

I say they use you as a scapegoat for their own fear of God. Rather than do the hard work of self examination, they examine you and find you wanting and pronounce you damned. Scapegoating is a primary sign that one is in the presence of the evil. Pertinent examples taken from the blog linked in Toxic Religion #1:
"Out of her antiChrist mouth we know her evil heart of unbelief and BLASPHEMY! You shall join her in Hell."
"Satin is real and people who believe like her will meet him."

"The enemy is anyone who defies God, and ultimately he is Satan, but man in the natural is also at enmity with God. I have the authority in Christ to make such a judgment. We who are His know each other. She proves by her words that she doesn't know God at all. Must be a god of her own making, in which case, she is speaking out of delusion and does no one any good."
"Satan your filthy love is Sodomy. God's love is the Justified Marriage between a man and a woman."
Hetrosexuals are the natural order to the natural law and that is fulfilled in Marriage between a man and a woman. It is commanded by God. Anything else is Satan's three ring Circus with his LGBT clowns some dressed in robes in the Catholic Church and in the Supreme Court. They will get their just reward from the almighty God and woe to them who will feel fire and death forever because they chose it of free will to oppose his law of Creation with perversion and degrading filth to bring it to His Altar in His Sanctuary of the Holy Catholic Church. As the Saints of Heaven are His witnesses not one of them will see the Gates of God's dwelling place. .
I say this form of evangelism is a naked attempt to use fear to 'correct' you. At its worst it is sadism. It is a direct assault on one's spirituality. How can it be loving to implant, maintain and exacerbate fear of damnation, the very fear that tormented the devout Nicholas Hermann aka Brother Lawrence and kept him from full intercourse with God for years?

Run away when they tell you how sinful you are. Run away! And that is what a lot of folks are doing.

I struggled a long time to get this idea of the failure of sin-based theology articulated. And I found a more succinct and more colorful description. You win some. You lose some.
Yes, the Zealot and Fanatic love to use their God as a hammer over your head. It really does fall back on the old childish defence of 'I am going to tell Daddy", when you don't do as they wish. "Daddy" is always the authoritative figure against whom you have no defence. It is most prevalent in a Patriarchal / Patrilineal societies. The only Difference is 'GOD' becomes the "Daddy".
by PadreMellyrn


Attitude Adjustment - Matthew 25:36 - I was sick, and ye visited me

“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

“Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

Thursday, June 25, 2015

I always cry tears of joy at weddings. Clears and purifies the heart and the sinuses. Go Hillary!

Richard and Mildred Loving 1967
Marriage is one of the "basic civil rights of man," fundamental to our very existence and survival... - Chief Justice Earl Warren

I believe all Americans, no matter their race, no matter their sex, no matter their sexual orientation, should have that same freedom to marry... I am still not a political person, but I am proud that Richard's and my name is on a court case that can help reinforce the love, the commitment, the fairness and the family that so many people, black or white, young or old, gay or straight, seek in life. I support the freedom to marry for all. That's what Loving, and loving, are all about. - Mildred Loving

Monday, June 22, 2015

Nick Sings Dixie

Way down south in the Land of Cotton,
Racism there is kind of rotten.
Oy vey!
Oy vey!
Oy vey, it's Dixieland.

- Nick Vanocur

Sunday, June 21, 2015


The Republican party is full of pastorticians. Bleating about how much you love Jesus and how much Jesus you'll shove up everyone's asses is a requirement for anyone who wants to be elected to office as a Republican. - Margaret Whitestone

Brock Davis Plays with His Food.

My favorite part of catering was creating beautiful tablescapes with flowers, drapery and artistic whimsey. I loved making the food look beautiful on the plate. That work has given me an appreciation of Food Art wherever I find it, on the canvas or on the plate.

You want to go to Brock Davis website, if only to see the Banana Peel Trucker Hat.  

Thursday, June 18, 2015

OMG GOP WTF? - And what rough beast, its hour come round at last...

George P. Bush looks like Marco Rubio and Jeb Bush had a baby, because they knew neither one of them would win the election, but their offspring might. Badda Bing. 

Hat tip to Yeats. 

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Nick the Feminist Speaks Ex Cathedra

There was a band of GOP whiners
Could not keep their hands off vaginas.
First they tried to de-school them,
Then regulate and rule 'em,
Leaving women with less rights than most minors. 

- Nick Vanocur
from his favorite table in the back

The Gay Banditos Prevent Abortion

Hat tip to Lewis Black.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Jeb Bush is Slut Shamer in Chief

We're Baggers GOP.
We want to control your pu^^y.
We want to be like it's 1853.
Please elect us hopefully.
- timalways wrote this.
Art by Favianna Rodriguez.

Public shaming would be an effective way to regulate the “irresponsible behavior” of unwed mothers, misbehaving teenagers and welfare recipients, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) argued in his 1995 book Profiles in Character.

In a chapter called "The Restoration of Shame,” the likely 2016 presidential candidate made the case that restoring the art of public humiliation could help prevent pregnancies “out of wedlock.”

As governor of Florida in 2001, Bush had the opportunity to test his theory on public shaming. He declined to veto a very controversial bill that required single mothers who did not know the identity of the father to publish their sexual histories in a newspaper before they could legally put their babies up for adoption. He later signed a repeal of the so-called "Scarlet Letter" law in 2003 after it was successfully challenged in court. - Read more at Huffington Post

  • 'Globally, the rate of maternal deaths has been steadily declining over the past two decades. Around the world, the rate of maternal deaths has been reduced by 45 percent since the mid-1990’s. Meanwhile, a woman’s risk of death from pregnancy in the U.S. today is double what it was a decade and a half ago.' By  Addicting Info 
  • 'Karen Collins, a 32-year-old Drew County nurse, is accused of two counts of performing 'an abortion without being licensed to do so and performing an unlawful abortion. She allegedly gave drugs to 37-year-old patient Anne Bynum, who was 33 weeks pregnant, inducing an abortion,' ArkansasOnline reports.
  • 'A Georgia prosecutor dismissed murder charges Wednesday against a 23-year-old woman accused of inducing an abortion by taking pills in a case that baffled even abortion opponents. Dougherty County District Attorney Greg Edwards issued a statement saying he had dismissed a malice murder charge against 23-year-old Kenlissia Jones, who spent about three days in jail before she was released. But, Edwards said, Jones still faces a misdemeanor charge of possession of a dangerous drug.'  Read more...
Jeb Bush and the Republicans want to force US women to give birth and to marry. No matter how poor or crazy the woman is. No matter the care she did not get during her pregnancy. It is now breed and/or die - and/or go to jail - and/or be very ashamed for being female and not doing female right. Health care? Nope. Because freedumb.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Art from the WPA

The Library of Congress possesses a treasure trove of the finest examples of American graphic art ever silk screened and printed.

I selected a few of the posters created by WPA artists for your enjoyment. Then as now, the government is not shy about giving us good advice. You can see more of these incredible posters HERE:

You can purchase prints of many of these posters. There is more than one Zoo poster. You want to see them all. I had a hard time selecting which one to use here.

The Federal Art Project (FAP) was the visual arts arm of the Great Depression-era New Deal Works Progress Administration Federal One program in the United States. It operated from August 29, 1935, until June 30, 1943. Reputed to have created more than 200,000 separate works, FAP artists created posters, murals and paintings. Some works still stand among the most-significant pieces of public art in the country. - Wikipedia

Did you know that Philadelphia once had a municipal acquarium? 

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Molon Labe or Plum Aphorism of the Day

If you cannot hide, do not run. 

Planned Parenthood Sues AZ for 'Misleading' Abortion Law

And the ACLU is in it too. Read more.... About damn time. Legislatures must not practice medicine.
If my vagina was a gun, you would stand for its rights,
You would ride on buses and fight all the fights.
If my vagina was a gun, you would treat it with care,
You wouldn’t spill all its secrets because, well, why go there.
If my vagina was a gun, you’d say what it holds is private
From cold dead hands we could pry, you surely would riot.
If my vagina was a gun, its rights would all be protected,
no matter the body count or the children affected.
If my vagina was a gun, I could bypass security,
concealed carry laws would ensure I’d have impunity.
If my vagina was a gun, I wouldn’t have to beg you,
I could hunt this great land and do all the things men do.
But my vagina is not a gun, it is a mightier thing,
With a voice that rings true making lawmakers’ ears ring.
Vaginas are not delicate, they are muscular and magic,
So stop messing with mine, with legislation that’s tragic.
My vagina’s here to demand from the source,
Listen to the voices of thousands or feel their full force.
- Katie Helm

Monday, June 1, 2015

Tailgating for Jesus - Sign of the Month - June 2015

This sign comes from Every Saturday Morning Blog.  This is their Mission Statement:
Louisville Clinic Escort volunteers offer to accompany people seeking abortions to the door of EMW Women’s Surgical Center while practicing de-escalation and promoting normalization of abortion access.

Helluva sign. Death, Religion and Politics on one stick. Bet that woman is a multi-tasker of the first water. The sign below was the runner up this month. What is it with trucks used as billboards? Way to maximize exposure for sure.

These are not the first truck signs I have published. I like them. Begs the question: do liberals drive trucks? Yes, they do. Look at truck sign #3 below.

Sunday, May 31, 2015

My Roma Tomato and Me

I planted two Roma tomatoes last year. I was overwhelmed by tomatoes. This Spring, because I do the Ruth Stout thing, I was blessed with about 100 volunteer tomato sprouts. I will never have to purchase seeds or plants again.

If you anticipate having too many tomatoes, you might be happy to have Ms. Mary Giblin's recipe.

Bill Giblin, Mary's son, did the technical drawings in 1938 for my Father's model airplane The Trenton Terror. People are still building the model all these years later.

Bill also played a Munchkin Soldier in the film The Wizard of Oz. He once showed me an autographed studio photograph of Margaret Hamilton he kept as a souvenir.

I used to go with my Dad to visit the Giblin's. They would make us Creamed Chicken and Waffles. Mrs. Giblin would send some Chili Sauce home with us. It is delicious with Cheese. It is savory but not hot.

Ms. Mary Giblin's Old Fashioned Sweet Chili Sauce

6 Onions
3 green Peppers
18 medium ripe Tomatoes
1 cup Brown Sugar
2 1/2 cups strong Vinegar
2 level teaspoons Salt
1 teaspoon each Cinnamon, Allspice, Nutmeg, and Mace (if you can find it)
1/2 teaspoon Cloves

Chop or grind the Onions and Peppers finely. Cut up the Tomatoes into small pieces. Cook all together slowly for 2 1/2 hours. Watch closely and stir often. Sugar makes things burn easily. Makes about 5 pints.

Nick and the Meaning of Life

"Some say life is too complex,
When you boil it down, it's food and sex."
- Nick Vanocur 

Sunday, May 24, 2015

A White Rose for Remembrance on Memorial Day

The young dead soldiers do not speak. 

Nevertheless, they are heard in the still houses: 
who has not heard them? 

They have a silence that speaks for them at night 
and when the clock counts. 

They say: We were young. We have died. 
Remember us. 

They say: We have done what we could 
but until it is finished it is not done. 

They say: We have given our lives but until it is finished 
no one can know what our lives gave. 

They say: Our deaths are not ours: they are yours, 
they will mean what you make them. 

They say: Whether our lives and our deaths were for 
peace and a new hope or for nothing we cannot say, 
it is you who must say this. 

We leave you our deaths. Give them their meaning. 
We were young, they say. We have died; remember us. 
- Archibald MacLeish (1892-1982)
God bless all of the Folks, sung and unsung, in uniform and out, who gave their lives for our experiment in democracy. May they rest in peace and honor.

Sometimes the work of a photographer is so beautiful that no words can do it justice. So it is with the work of Eddie C. More of his photographs can be found here:

Friday, May 22, 2015

Dog Days Yummy

I found this Dog treat on the internet and just had to share. The dog days of Summer will be here soon. I am making this for my Baby dog. 

Picture is kind of fuzzy but the recipe is great. If the Dog does not like this, I will try them myself. I think I will try one anyway. I like peanut butter. 

Monday, May 18, 2015

Right on Time Barbecue Sauce

I am blessed with seriously foody friends. Only a friend will give you their prize recipe for Barbecue Sauce.

Iron Pyrite's Barbecue Sauce


1 stick of Butter
1 chopped white Onion
1 minced Garlic clove
4 teaspoons of Tabasco sauce (more of less to suit taste)
1 tablespoon of Lemon Juice
2 tablespoons of Chili Powder (more or less to suit taste)
2 cups of apple cider Vinegar (rice vinegar will give a more “sour” finish)
1 32-ounce bottle of Ketchup (more or less to suit taste)
1-1/2 cups of Brown Sugar (more sugar will tend to thicken the mixture, and make more of a glaze on the meat)
4 tablespoons of Worcestershire Sauce (Lea and Perrin’s is good)
Fine ground Black Pepper (add to suit taste while cooking)

Melt butter in a large frying pan, and sauté the onions and garlic until light brown. I like to sauté the onions and garlic starting with a low heat, then gradually increase the heat up to a “medium” level, until the onions and garlic start to “liquefy” in the butter. If you choose to do this, you will have to ensure that the onions and garlic are finely chopped/minced.

Bring the heat down to a high simmer, and add the remaining ingredients, starting with the ketchup; thoroughly stir the ketchup into the mix, then add the brown sugar a few small scoops at a time, so that it will not “clump”, and continue to stir consistently.

Once all the ingredients have been added, bring the heat down to a low simmer, and stir frequently for about 45 minutes to an hour. This is time to add the “suit to taste” ingredients that you like. Keep refrigerated - will keep well in the refrigerator.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Too Yummy to Leave in the Comments - Chili Divine

Ms. Lissa Patton's Chili Divine

"Twelve good sized ripe heirloom tomatoes (they have an acidic taste, not like the cardboard you find in the supermarket).

Peel (I drop them in hot water for a few seconds then put them on ice, which cracks the skin and it is easily stripped). Slice in half lengthwise. De-seed. (A baby spoon works for this).

Put in food processor along with de-seeded jalapenos to taste. (Slice lengthwise and use a baby spoon again)


Put in Dutch oven.

Add two cinnamon sticks, salt and black pepper to taste. (Sometines I add a bit of white pepper).

Finely chop a sweet white onion and add.

Add beans (Kidney and black beans are what I use a pound or so of each.)

Add about two cups of chicken or turkey broth.

Brown about two pounds of pork sausage. (We have an old fashioned hand crank grinder, so we do it ourselves with white pork shoulder meat.)

Add a half cup of honey after you put the browned meat in the pot.

Three cloves garlic, finely chopped.

Heat at 220 in the oven for at least three hours, pulling the rack out every thirty minutes or so to stir.

I like it to go five or six hours the first time. Gets better every time you reheat. It’s thick, so sometimes we serve it over white rice, like gumbo.

Freezes well."

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Life and Liberty for Those Who Believe

On religious issues there can be little or no compromise. There is no position on which people are so immovable as their religious beliefs. There is no more powerful ally one can claim in a debate than Jesus Christ, or God, or Allah, or whatever one calls this supreme being. But like any powerful weapon, the use of God's name on one's behalf should be used sparingly. The religious factions that are growing throughout our land are not using their religious clout with wisdom. They are trying to force government leaders into following their position 100 percent. If you disagree with these religious groups on a particular moral issue, they complain, they threaten you with a loss of money or votes or both.

I'm frankly sick and tired of the political preachers across this country telling me as a citizen that if I want to be a moral person, I must believe in "A," "B," "C" and "D." Just who do they think they are? And from where do they presume to claim the right to dictate their moral beliefs to me?

And I am even more angry as a legislator who must endure the threats of every religious group who thinks it has some God-granted right to control my vote on every roll call in the Senate. I am warning them today: I will fight them every step of the way if they try to dictate their moral convictions to all Americans in the name of "conservatism."
Barry Goldwater - Speech in the US Senate (16 September 1981)