THINGS THAT CAN BE VERY GOOD OR VERY BAD:
THINGS THAT MAKE ME LAUGH:
The following conversation which just transpired in our living room, post-dinner. To set the scene, I made spicy ginger meatballs over a sesame slaw with apples and cabbage. Today was 90 degrees; the air conditioning is on and the apartment is cool and quiet. There's some sort of British crime drama playing on the television and I'm finishing up work emails.
Me: "Can I get you anything while I'm up? Whiskey? Coconut La Croix?"
Wilted, semi-tipsy response from the direction of the couch: "Is there dessert?"
Me: "Yes. Chocolate cookies and frozen waffles."
Couch: "Waffle, please."
Me: "One or two?"
Me: "Two squares or two waffles?" (By which I mean, two quarters, since I always tear my waffles into four quarters before freezing them so they don't take up as much space.)
Couch, dolefully: "Two WAFFLES."
Couch: "With butter."
Couch: "And honey."
THINGS THAT MAKE MY HEART BEAT IRREGULARLY:
I forgot about poetry for a little bit. And then, I rediscovered how much I like just reading poetry--paging through it and falling into the words of someone who can capture exactly how I feel in a way I can't. Or, can capture somehow I've never felt but in a way that makes me feel like I have. Here are a few recent ones I keep revisiting:
Anne Carson --
Beauty makes me hopeless. I don't care why anymore I just want to get away. When I look at the city of Paris I long to wrap my legs around it. When I watch you dancing there is a heartless immensity like a sailor in a dead calm sea. Desires as round as peaches bloom in me all night, I no longer gather what falls.
Yehuda Amichai --
This is how it started: suddenly it felt
loose and light and happy inside,
like when you feel your shoelaces loosening a bit
and you bend down.
Then other days.
And now I'm like a Trojan horse
filled with terrible loves.
Every night they break out and run wild
and at dawn they come back
into my dark belly.
Louise Glück --
Once there was a horse, and on the horse there was a rider. How handsome
they looked in the autumn sunlight, approaching a strange city! People
thronged the streets or called from the high windows. Old women sat
among flowerpots. But when you looked about for another horse or another
rider, you looked in vain. My friend, said the animal, why not abandon me?
Alone, you can find your way here. But to abandon you, said the other,
would be to leave a part of myself behind, and how can I do that
when I do not know which part you are?
THINGS THAT MAKE ME GLAD ABOUT THE EXISTENCE OF BUTTER:
Extra Flaky Parmesan Goat Cheese Biscuits
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese (not pre-grated! use the real deal here)
6 tablespoons very cold unsalted butter
1/2 cup crumbled goat cheese
3/4 cup milk
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and pepper. Stir in the grated Parmesan.
Preheat the oven to 450º F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Cut the butter into the dry ingredients using a fork or pastry cutter until it's in mostly pea-sized chunks -- some chunks can be slightly larger and some smaller, but don't overwork it.
Add the goat cheese and stir to combine.
Add the milk, stir the dough with a fork until it is somewhat evenly moistened, then knead it a few times in the bowl so it mostly comes together in a ball but don't overwork it at all. It should not be cohesive and there should be chunks of drier areas and some wetter areas.
Turn the dough out onto the parchment-lined sheet, and fold it over onto itself until there aren't any dry spots remaining. Don't think of this as kneading: You want to handle it gently and as you fold, the wet/dry areas will disappear. Fold about 10 times, then gently press the dough down to a rectangle about 2 inches high.
Using a sharp knife, cut the dough into 2" squares and separate them slightly on the baking sheet.
Bake for about 12-15 minutes, or until golden brown. Let cool slightly, then eat!