Monday, November 30, 2009

Of all the savory, sweet, decedent food combinations I indulged in this past weekend, I seriously wanted to make love to the sauce served up in my grandmother's delicate depression glass china.

Ps. The secret, I understand, is adding the juice from one additional orange.

Botanic Wanderings

Pretty things found in the State Botanical Garden of Georgia.

Horizontally Speaking

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

"Sexuality is to feminism what work is to Marxism: that which is most one's own, yet most taken away."
Catherine MacKinnon

And so began Jennifer Finlayson-Fife's lecture to a packed room of 20+ women Saturday morning. I thank my forward thinking, social activist friend, Suzette, for organizing the event. Definitely not your typical enrichment (now RS) meeting, but rather a self-selecting group of marrieds and singles that came together to talk about one thing.

In sorting through my copious notes and discussing the issue at length with my roommate, and even coming across a perfectly timed four page passage from Rand's Atlas Shrugged (Philosophical Brilliance!), I've grappled with how this topic impacts me on a personal, and perhaps more important, social level. Essentially, I've been mentally oversexed.

A few things I came away with.
  • Claiming ones sexual identity as a member of a patriarchal church is not only possible, it's essential.
  • Desire and pleasure are gifts from a benevolent God.
  • Single LDS men, especially those older guys, have been cultured to rejected their sexual identity. Think about that.
  • Adolescent females are shaped by the interactions they have with their father. (Not a huge surprise.) But get this, studies have found that adolescent females who saw their fathers engage in domestic duties had an easier time embracing their sexual identity than those that did not.
Now I just need to finish reading her dissertation.


Okay, so maybe it's been awhile since I've been asked out.
Or maybe I've been crushing on the USBG security guard, say, all summer.
Maybe it's just a matter of his chocolate eyes and sexy, yet masculine lashes.
Or maybe I caught him engrossed in a good book in the break room. (Hot!)
Or perhaps African American males have an appeal entirely their own.

But for heaven's sake, did you have to accept his invitation for a date so hastily?


Man up, woman.

Life's Appetites

Monday, November 16, 2009

November officially marked the beginning of overindulgence and last week was an especially gluttonous week.

So, what have I been up to?

1. Pie filling and fulfilling my calling.
Upon discovering I had a budget to blow through by the end of the year, I decided it was high time to get my crafty on and send my fhe partner into the mission field with a bang. These little single-serving-pie-in-a-jar treats are just too adorable! I'm thinking I'll whip up a few more of these in the next few weeks, and this time I'll actually give them away.

2. Snacking and Serving.
Since learning about the Capitol Food Fight a few months back and scoffing at the $100 ticket price, I signed up to, what else, volunteer. The event took place at the Ronald Regan Building last Wednesday night and as the largest annual fundraiser for the DC Central Kitchen I was delighted to promote a mission I fully support by offering my services at the registration table. Top chefs, like Anthony Bourdain and Jose Andres, gathered to battle it out on the stage, followed by a live auction, and table after table of the most tempting tastings from 60 top-notch area restaurants. Um, yeah I was pretty much in food paradise.
New To Me gustatory flavors included: fois gras, caviar, pumpkin marshmallows, and pork salt.

3. Tweeting and Tasting.
Thursday evening I managed to make it just in time,
after an hour delay waiting for AAA to charge my car battery, to gather with fellow social media foodies at a swanky hotel in Old Town. It was a little different that I anticipated (read: we did not spend the entire two hours tweeting), but rather learning about the different savory and fruity qualities of extra virgin olive oil. Shot after shot of peppery pungent liquid left my throat a little shell shocked; fortunately, the balsamic vinegar melded into my palette sending me to another planet. Seriously. It took all my might to resisted imbibing directly from the display bottle.

4. Pre-Thanksgiving Baking.
And finally, a few weeks ago I got really brave and hauled myself out to a Midsies institute class. I figured how bad could it be? Crazy me, I even signed up to bring a dessert to the upcoming T-Day dinner. Yeah, this is what they call cushioning the blow, right? After receiving multiple reminders about my previous commitment I decided to dull the pain with sweet potato love. You can find the recipe here. (However since I have no clue why Southerners find it acceptable to pair sweet potato pie with a meringue topping, I concocted a pecan brown sugar creation of my own.) I even managed to have a really enjoyable time mingling with the Midsies Saturday night. All-in-all it wasn't bad. That is, after we ditched the Kenny G music.


Friday, November 13, 2009

Sometime ago I caught the last few moments of the Ken Burns documentary honoring the social activists, Elizabeth Cady Stanton and her beloved friend, Susan B. Anthony. Mesmerized, I watched. Awed by poignant moments throughout the film, but the most salient pieces were reflected in Stanton's writing. They stood out, like celebratory beacons, expressing the heart of a woman who has altogether too often been lost to the annals of history.

Although I've no doubt to Stanton's feisty spirits
— indicated most brazenly by her demand that the word obey be removed from her marriage ceremony— there is a certain longing expressed in her writing; a desire for greater intellectual and social equality; a hope for a society that moves beyond relegating the definition of woman to the roles they sometimes assume. There is, too, an evident zeal, born from her own life experience and a sense of warm empathy that extends to all mankind. Together, these forces illustrates the imperative for self-dependence and the necessity of solitude.

Yesterday, in celebration of her birth, I obtained a copy of the brief booklet Solitude of Self; delivered
in January 1892 to the House Committee on the Judiciary, to the Senate Committee on Woman Suffrage, and to the National American Woman Suffrage Association.

I read it, then reread it.

I'll leave you with one of my favorite passages.

"But when all artificial trammels are removed, and women are recognized as individuals, responsible for their own environments, thoroughly educated for all positions in life they may be called to fill; with all the resources in themselves that liberal thought and broad culture can give; guided by their own conscience and judgment [then]... when women are trained in this way they will, in a measure, be fitted for those hours of solitude that come alike to all, whether prepared or otherwise."

What not to Say

I have an entire mental catalog of moronic statements men have uttered to me. These run the spectrum. Some occurred on a first date. Others, after a casual canoodling session. Some even from people I've dated.

"You know, I really dig red heads."
"Actually, I'm perfectly fine bringing polygamy back."
"It's okay. My Mom was overweight too."
"You're more like a sister to me."

But last night topped the cake.

Patting my midsection.
"And baby makes three."

Telling a woman she looks pregnant, even in jest, is BAD form. Proceeding to tell that woman she should have lots of babies, to make up for the offensive, is even worse!

Way to get my feminist ire up.
Thanks, jack a*%.

Your Love, My Love

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Gets me through days like today.

10 Things I L O V E November

Sunday, November 1, 2009

1. How autumn lingers on the east coast.

2. Visiting family in Georgia for Thanksgiving.

3. Open Enrollment.
(Hey, at least I have insurance. Right?)
4. Sweet Potatoes.

(Confession: I buy these by the case load @ Costco.)

5. Seven fewer Metro stops.

6. Attending this woman's lecture.

(Seriously, I have her dissertation on order.)

7. The pungent aroma of wood burning stoves.

8. Soup, soup, and more soup. Specifically: Pho.

(Please begin an intervention.)

9. Memories of Pie Day.

(Invented and happily resurrected by a very smart friend.)

10. Returning to the lap of Queenland luxury.

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