25 September, 2014

Second Banana. Part two (excuse the pun)

A while back I learned of the expression "to be the second banana: (part one here)  .   
I'm here to report that I was able to use it tonight.  We were at supper club (it was Thai night, if you were wondering).  I was talking to some of my friends about our plans for next month's supper club meeting. As our theme next month is Spooky Food, tonight we decided to also have a costume contest for the kids.  
We were telling Tiffany, who was one table over, about the contest.  She commented that one of her girls insisted and had her heart set on dressing up as a banana. She added that her other girl was still undecided as to what costume she wanted. 
Oh, she could go as the second banana, I replied. 
Jill sitting next to me burst out laughing. 

Perfect conversation, perfect timing.  
So there, I've successfully used  my phrase.

04 September, 2014

Hay una grieta en mi corazón...

A menudo fallece alguna persona de la farándula, hoy mismo falleció Joan Rivers, pero no siempre me impactan. Hoy también partió Gustavo Cerati y sin embargo me ha afectado un poco más. Él era el vocalista del grupo Soda Stereo.

En los últimos años he vivido en una zona rural de Estados Unidos, no hay estaciones de radio o televisión en español, así que no es frecuente que escuche las canciones de Soda Stereo. Ocasionalmente las oigo en Pandora o en mi iPod. Buscando el enlace a una de sus canciones para poner en Facebook encontré varios videos de sus canciones.   Mientras veía los videos, me pusé a cantar. Me sé la letra de las canciones aún cuando no las había escuchado en años.

En cierta forma me llevaron a evocar y recordar la época de cuando yo asistía a la preparatoria.  Ha sido un viaje nostálgico a mi Querétaro de los ochentas. Me acordé de las fiestas y tardeadas que organizábamos;  las idas al cine; del Padre Chava, José Luis, Tito, don Pepe y la secre; las blusas holgadas y las hombreras; los top siders; el cabello super esponjado/alborotado/rizado; de los ensayos de la obras de teatro; renta de películas en los Video Centros -sin olvidar rebobinarlas antes de entregar; de la miss de química (Consuelo, creo), Agustín, Marcelino, el doc. Barrera de biología, la maestra Aurora; sonríe y la fuerza estará contigo de XE TU; de cuando abrieron Plaza del Parque y había otra opción además de Plaza de las Américas (y el otro centro comercial donde estaba la Comer en Zaragoza, cerca de avenida Universidad); cuando estrenaron el estadio Corregidora; de ir al centro cuando fue el Mundial del 86 y conocer a Tony y su papá; los polvos pica pica, el ángel del rock, amante bandido, la negra Tomasa y al que le dolía la cara de estar tan guapo; los intersalesianos; La Ópera y el JBJ; Cuna de Lobos y Catalina Creel;  las tortas de la Tortuga en el mercado Escobedo; los pepsilindros; irse de pinta a comer gorditas al centro; el extraño retorno de Diana Salazar (y los pupilentes diabólicos); de las veces me topaba con Chay, Tere, Pepe y los otros estudiantes que vivían en la Cimatario y también caminaban a la prepa...

 Estas son tan sólo algunos ejemplos de todo lo que revivido hoy.  Una época en que la música del  rock en español y Soda Stereo estaban en pleno apogeo.

Hoy hay una grieta en mi corazón...


P. D. ¿Alguien se acuerda cuál fue el pecado de Oyuki?

04 February, 2014

The Little Black Book

This is not what you think...  I have now a little note pad in my purse and when I get an idea for the blog I just write key words, a phrase or short sentence in order to look at later and write a post here in the blog.

There may be 5 or 6 ideas that I've jotted down in the past few days.  Sometimes the ideas come to me when I'm away from my computer, driving, crocheting or at work, this is a good way to remember the idea and also keep it in a safe place.  So instead consign  the post ideas to oblivion, I simply make a note.  Now I just need to come over here and actually write about it...  well it's not perfect but it helps for now.

Also when I see the note pad and glance at the key words, my brain begins "writing" the article.  Perhaps it will help me write a little better. I want to write at least twice a month.  If I do it more often, better. I know that if I set the bar too high I will feel overwhelmed and do nothing.  

Here is for more blogging!

Farewell for now.  

17 January, 2014


Yesterday I drove to New Orleans to pick a friend up at the airport.  Since it was lunch time we went to a Central American restaurant and had some Salvadorean pupusas.  We hit the road back to Hattiesburg via I-10 and then took I-59 N.  We were deep in conversation when I noticed, as we crossed into Mississippi, that a couple had pulled over and stopped a the welcome sign.  

One person was taking the picture while the other person stood in front of the sign; his left arm stretched out  wearing his falconer's glove and a hawk perched on it.  It looked like the hawk was still hooded.

Some other day, I probably would not even have noticed, but it just so happened that I had been reading a book (which I have already finished reading by now) where the main character's hobby is falconry.  He owns a hawk named Armistead and through out the book the author describes some of the basics.  Of course all this is new vocabulary for me so I kept highlighting words and looking them up (have I mentioned that I love this feature of my e-reader? No? Well, I do.).  So on the back of my mind there is this new "world" that I've never come in contact with and suddenly, right there, just a few yards away from me, it comes to life. Full color.  

I know, I'm probably rambling, but I just thought it was such a coincidence. What are the odds?

P. S. The murder mystery that I was reading was A Witness Above by Andy Straka, good read, by the way. 

13 January, 2014


There are TV shows that my husband loves and watches every week.  There are shows that I like and watch.    Some shows he likes, I watch with him but they are not my favorites. Same with him. We watch them together and keep each other company.  But we do not always agree on what shows we both love.  One show we both enjoy is Castle.  Actually, he got me hooked on it.  He also got me one of the Castle books a couple of years ago.  Now Castle on Monday nights has become sort of our "date night".   

Even when I'm out of town, we each watch it and send each other text messages or Skype afterwards to  discuss the episode.  Another thing I do during the ads is Twitting about it and reading the reactions of other viewers. You could say that I'm a little hooked into the Caskett saga.  

My weeks begin better because Castle, LOL.  There are always twists and unexpected turns that keep us glued to the screen.  

It also helps that Castle is ruggedly handsome and easy on the eyes. 

So a big "thank you" to all the cast and writers of this show who make my Mondays better. 

11 January, 2014

Second banana

So I like idiomatic expressions.  For a while one of my coworkers used to quiz me.  She had a idioms dictionary and would pick one at random to see if I knew it.

They sometimes jump at me when I'm reading. Many times I have heard them before and sometimes I have to look them up to see if they mean what I think they mean.  When I read  books in my e-reader most times I highlight them.  

 So I came across one yesterday that I don't think I had heard before: second banana
"The mayor cleared his throat and gave the chief a look: This wasn't a good cop, bad cop scene.  This was a star turn. Indignant second bananas were not required."   from: Nailed by Joseph Flynn Kindle Edition.  
Looked it up to double check the meaning as it sounded like another expression I've heard but needed to make sure. So I learned a new phrase. By coincidence, a few hours later, when I was watching TV they said the same expression!   Twice in one day!  
second banana n. Slang
1. One, such as an assistant or deputy, who is subordinate to another.
2. One who serves as the straight man opposite the leading comedian in a burlesque.
Now to really learn it, I need to find an occasion to use it and say it.  Most people would not even notice when I say it as it will fit the conversation, but I'll give myself a little pat on the back when I do use it.

'Till next one 

La Mexicana.

03 January, 2014


For New Year's Eve supper we had Missican. It was fun and it was delicious. Ah, Missican is how we named our meal: dishes from Mississippi & Mexico.

We had black eyed peas with bacon, turnips and greens, chicken tortilla soup, and corn bread. For appetizer there was Rotel cheese dip 'n chips.

New Year's Eve Meal.

I had never cooked black eyed peas. EVER! NEVER! So soaked them (thinking that that's how you do with lentils and beans, so it must be the same). I kept thinking how to cook them. Crock pot, easy-peasy lemon-squeezy, right? Read the package, yes you need to soak them. So after changing the water a couple of times of the super-soaked peas, and rinsing them just in case, they were put in the crock pot. I put in the blender an onion, 4 or 5 cloves of garlic and some parsley that I had in the fridge, pureed it and added it to the peas with enough water to cover them. Added salt and pepper, put the lid, turned it on.
Meanwhile, in another crock pot I put the chicken breasts, cut in big cubes. In the blender I pureed an onion, some chipotle peppers and some tomato sauce. Poured over the chicken and also added diced tomatoes and the rest of the can of the tomato sauce. I went overboard and used a big can of each, the big 28 oz. kind. Added a little bit of water, salt and pepper, put the lid, turned it on and went to sleep. So two crock pots, two dishes and a restful night. :)  

Earlier on the 31st I browned some ground turkey, added Rotel, Velveeta and let it melt. There it is, ready to be put in the microwave when guests arrive. I also chopped some onion and a little bit of green bell pepper I had left and added them to the corn bread mix and then baked it.  While the corn bread was baking, I cooked some bacon.  Once it was ready I added it to the black eye peas (yeah, I didn't add it when the peas cooked so ours had crunchy bits). 

Michael set the table and Derek and Danyel arrived.   Danyel had taken care of cooking the turnips and the greens with bacon. I do not prepare too many southern dishes, so I let the experts take care of that.

So as we were all hungry, we jumped right ahead and dined.  It was soooo gooood.  They really liked the black eyes peas and I had to confess I'd never done them before.  They said the peas were yummy and they were impressed.   As always we had a great time eating, talking and being together.  

After the meal we went outside. Michael had prepared the pit with the pine tree logs from some branches we cut off one of the trees a while back. He lit it and the wood caught right away and had some amazing flames and warmth.  We stayed outside till the arrival of 2014!  

Our little bonfire!

From Wikipedia: Lucky New Year food... ...The traditional meal also includes collard, turnip, or mustard greens, and ham. The [black eyed] peas, since they swell when cooked, symbolize prosperity; the greens symbolize money; the pork, because pigs root forward when foraging, represents positive motion. Cornbread also often accompanies this meal.

Welcome 2014!