Weekend Odds and Ends

Sophie_2I wanted to post a spunky picture of Sophie for Friday’s Ark but she wouldn’t come out of the ceiling. Wednesday night she had a close encounter with one of the skunks who lives under the deck. Usually the cats and the skunks peacefully co-exist; on many a balmy night the skunks root around under the bird feeder while the cats watch from the hot tub cover. Right now, with just a hint of Spring in the air the skunks are sort of rammy and Sophie went barreling out with a little more energy than usual and wham!

Sophie’s a proud and meticulous cat, in the best feline tradition, so she was more than a little mortified at the stinky state of affairs. She knocked at the window in Rich’s office, came in and immediately popped up into the rafters above his desk. In 36 hours we never saw her despite a lot of, "here, kitty, kitty, kitty" but this afternoon her hunger apparently got the better of her. She came down long enough to dine and then she was out the window to take care of business and quickly back in for what had to be another in a long series of baths. She’s mostly de-skunked herself but shows no sign of letting up on the licking. Here she is eating on top of Rich’s bookcase where her food is safe from the fat cat.
I’m thinking it must be SuperBowl weekend. Rich is conspicuously absent. He has a job that lots of folks would envy, serving as a consultant to management of the NFL, ESPN, Anheiser-Busch, MLB, etc. He makes his living off sports and he spends long work days and lots of travel time thinking about sports and leisure in America. This means that things like the U.S. Tennis Open, Indy 500, and SuperBowl come around and we have front row seats. Fun? Not so much. For Rich, he most always has to be work conscious and when spouses are included it’s usually a lot of social schmoozing, which isn’t really up my alley. Tennis? I’ll happily sit in a catered box seat. Racing is too noisy and I’m not much interested in football beyond the college level. I enjoy the annual Maui trip for the Xterra World Championship Triathlon. That incidentally, will be broadcast tomorrow on CBS just prior to the SuperBowl and I watch that because I usually catch a glimpse of myself there, watching at the finish line. That’s sort of vain, I guess. Anyway, if you like triathlon stuff, tune in before the big game for that show. The competitors are phenomenal athletes, many amateur, and the grand prize is something like an airline ticket and 2,000.- a very far cry from NFL contracts.

Because the SuperBowl is here this year (or within 50 miles of here) lots of Rich’s colleagues are in town for parties and the game. The whole weekend is filled with them, from black tie to the giant Budweiser party at Tiger Stadium. Rich has to "work" but I’m staying cozy at home because it’s cold and dreary and rainy.
Mammogram_xray020903_3I did kick off the weekend with, well, not a bang- more of a smoosh. I was way overdue- shame on me. I bank on a low risk personal and family history- which is a very risky thing to do. Afterwards, I felt happy leaving with a good report- one less thing to worry about. All that mauling is a small price to pay for the peace of mind. Or early warning. And what are you waiting for? There are people depending on you- make your appointment now!

One last thing: SuperBowl Sunday is the best excuse to eat extravagantly and excessively. We’ll try and keep it low key but I make a wicked Etoufee for the occasion.I use:
-a good stock and roux base
– a really good long grain/wild rice mixture
– those home canned tomato products from last summer
-1# chorizo
-1# Amy’s chicken maple apple sausage
– 2 large rings of Eckrich smoked sausage
– 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts sauteed separately and shredded
-3 # of JUMBO (biggest you can get) peeled and deveined fresh shrimp, sauteed in butter and garlic.

I add some fine chop peppers and onion and garlic and Cajun seasoning plus homemade hot sauce to taste.

Those are the basic ingredients and I mess around with it until it’s quite spicy and the right consistency and I avoid okra at all costs. I leave it simmering on the stove starting around 4 and make homemade corn bread.  We keep plenty of beer in the fridge and people eat throughout the afternoon whenever they choose. We will be rooting for the Seahawks.

And you? Who are you cheering for and more importantly, what are you eating?



11 responses to “Weekend Odds and Ends

  1. I have to run to Walmart so I’ll be back to read this more properly. The mammogram caught my eye and glad to hear you have a good report. I should go again too. There should be some form of annual screening for men in which their dangling privates have to be squished flat… maybe then they would help come up with a better method.

  2. Love SRP’s comment on mammograms for men….LOL! and I agree.

    Rich must know Paul Tagliabue, or at least have met him. Paul and mr. kenju were co-captains of the Georgetown Basketball team in the early 60’s. There is a very good article about him in the Jan. 23rd issue of Sports Illustrated. He is probably the nicest of all the guys mr. kenju went to college with.

    I don’t watch football – so I will not be rooting for either team.

  3. Well, you are so kind to make such a low-calorie offering.

    I am so sorry for Sophie. With all that tomato stuff in the Entouffe, maybe dip her in there? And, yes, she probably wouldn’t mind a shrimp or two.

  4. Once a cat has encountered skunk spray once, are they cured for life? Or are they like dogs, eternally optimistic?
    Turkeyburgers, Naptime, Gardening

  5. I love Roxanne’s comment, too… and it’s time for me to schedule my next squishing; thanks for the reminder.

    Poor Sophie. I can’t imagine that she’d take too well to Hoss’s suggestion re: the tomatoes.

    Your etouffee sounds yummy. I don’t think of okra as one of its ingredients, but please please please don’t tell me that you make gumbo without those wonderful green pods.

    I’m one of the rare native Texans who is not a football fan. However, we live in Seattle, where every TV in the city will automatically come on at 3:30 tomorrow afternoon. We’re going to have a few friends over to watch the commercials, and probably some of the game, too. (Go Seahawks!) We’ll be eating my homemade chili, cornbread and Mexican chocolate icebox cookies.

  6. I love Cajun food. It doesn’t always like me much, especially if it’s really spicy.Go Seahawks!

  7. Spicy, shrimpy, Super Bowl soup! Surely Sophie’s skunking shouldn’t symbolize a sign for Seattle’s superior Seahawks?! Sorry Steelers!

  8. I’m back. Never made it out of the house and now Blogger seems to be down. I can’t get into any sites with blogspot.com at the end, even my own. But I can still post on Blogspot, no one will see them but they will be there. Anyone know what’s up with that?

    I did high school in New Brighton, Pennsylvania. It’s a little town about 50 miles NNW of Pittsburg. Joe Namath was from Beaver Falls, the little town across the way but his mom’s house was in New Brighton and I walked by it on my way to school each day. So, I will probably cheer for them.

    As for the food. The girl is going to visit tomorrow for a few hours so we are going out for lunch. She’s coming to see Max who is having a formal excisional biopsy of his skin lesions, then the oncologist will tell us if this is to be simple or if we will just “make him a happy boy” for as long as he has left. He is really loving this pampering thing and like the cats, has no qualms about asking for what he wants. Right now he wants the cats to come on out and go to bed so he can come in the sunroom.

    Weather Report: 9PM, temperature 66 degrees, winds from the south at 18 mph with gusts right on up there, one just blew some papers off my night stand. It should be raining right now but I don’t think so. The temp should be starting to fall any time now.

    Rhett was so upset when he heard about Sophie, he went into the bathroom and tore up a roll of toilet paper. Shredded. He shows such bravado when he’s this far from the skunks. He wants you to tell her that he(Rhett) thinks she is the mostest lovely cat on the earth even with skunk fur.

  9. Not a football watcher but I am a Cajun food eater. Your recipe sounds great. Hope your team wins!

  10. My husband’s father throws a huge superbowl party every year…the past two years he’s had it catered by his favorite restaurant. Lots of people bring food too. Last year Hannah was sick so I stayed home while Rachel and Dad had a great time.

    This year we’re all going and in the morning, we’ll go ice-skating.

    And of course i”m routing for Bonnie’s team.

  11. I’ll take the shrimp straight out of the skillet please!!

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