Monday, October 13, 2008
HAUNTING THE GHOST
Are you familiar with that Ghost Hunter program on the SciFi channel, one of many such shows popping up lately? Shouldn't it be renamed, "Haunting the Ghost", since they constantly invade these quiet places with their hi-tech equipment, going to all that painstaking trouble to find, most of the time, nothing? If ghosts inhabit the place, they probably decide to go visit the time-share till the whole thing blows over.
Did you ever think that we can look so hard for something, relentlessly pine away for someone long gone, or otherwise dwell on the past, to the point where we are the stalker, the one doing the haunting? A bit of a waste.
I had a dream the other night, about a "Frankie and Annette/John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John" type couple, out for a sunny day at the beach with their buddies, circa 1960. As they scampered up over the dunes and out of site, the scene changed to the present. Apparently, our beach girl had a brother, now an older man, who cannot get over the mysterious death of his sister so long ago on that golden beach. (Something dreadful had happened that day to the couple, but I am not aware of what befell them).
Well, the brother blames the boyfriend, who also died that day, and therefore won't let go of his anger at the guy, and seems to prefer the agony of not being able to let go. He constantly visits the beach or dead boyfriend's abandoned house, cursing and railing at poor Frankie/John.
In my dream its like I'm watching a movie about the whole thing. I see Frankie/John, who in the afterlife has become a roving reporter, catching up with celebrity ghosts who scurry by, giving him snippets of interviews as he follows them with his outstretched spectral microphone. He is, however, constantly having to stop what he's doing and just stand there, and silently endure it, whenever big brother shows up to rant and rave. Frankie is definitely bummed by it. Some kind of purgatory, I guess.
As Austin Powers would say, "What does it all mean, Basil?" Who knows? Maybe just that we waste a lot of time, clinging to what is gone (my girlish waist, your 401K?),
when perhaps we could take something learned or a great old recipe or two, and move on to enjoy THIS October day, this golden morning, this apple in the orchard waiting to be picked. This day we have the chance to smile at someone who needs it, perhaps desperately. Wow. Could there even be a little poem nestled in your fevered brain, waiting to escape?! Here's my little attempt, in iambic pentameter:
Straight and sturdy, leathered brown, the maple
tree, a brave wise creature, I've come to see
holding branches bearing bright, profusely
colored banners, in variegated light.
Dare I be bold as you, show my colors,
tone and hue to use this gentle Autumn
day to make amends in small way. Sorrows,
wasted time and idle words do I repent
and vow to better bless the world with time
spent bearing little candles bright with rhyme
and recipes and hope for humankind
joyous colors of Fall, and quiet mind.
Whew, glad to have that out of my head and onto the keyboard. Need to make room, you know, Fall cleaning and all. Here are a couple of lovely recipes for the season:
Lentil and Sausage Soup
One onion, chopped
1 or more cloves of garlic, peeled, chopped
One half lb., or more, Italian sausage, loose,(or if in links, break apart) COOKED
Olive oil to saute onion and garlic in
8 cups chicken stock or broth
2 and 1/2 cups dried lentils
3-4 bay leaves
1 cup carrots, sliced
1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 tsp. dried marjoram (I substituted oregano)
1 tsp. dried thyme
salt and pepper to taste
Saute onion and garlic for 5 minutes or till tender (don't burn the garlic).
Drain oil, if you wish, and add broth and lentils.
Cover, simmer 30 minutes.
Add remaining ingredients.
Simmer 25 minutes more.
Remove bay leaves, and serve.
MOM'S APPLESAUCE BREAD
2 cups sifted flour
3/4 cup sugar
3 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
Sift above ingredients together. In a separate bowl, beat 1 egg into 1 and 1/2 cups applesauce (if you use homemade applesauce, which is usually heavier, then cut down to 1 cup). Add to dry ingredients with 2 Tbsp. melted shortening or vegetable oil. Nuts may be added if desired. Bake in loaf pan, at 350 degrees F. for 1 hour.
Happy cooking and baking, happy season!!!!!!!