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Wednesday, September 22, 2004

If you have to move, it's always best to move to a bigger place than the one you're leaving. That's especially true if you're a packrat. I've never thrown anything away in my life, so there's no way I could downsize without severe emotional trauma. Or at least a mild whimper. (But that's not a problem, because I'm not moving any time soon.)

Mom is in the process of getting ready to move. She has sold the place she's in and found a place where she'll be happier, for various reasons. The drawback is that there isn't as much room there to store all the things she wants to keep (which is pretty much everything she ever owned). She's having to make some hard decisions.

Suzanne has been helping her pack. That's good, because otherwise she'd try to do it all on her own, and she'd try to get it done in a day and a half. She won't be moving for more than three weeks, but her house already looks like a loading dock just a-waitin' for the brown truck to drop by.

When I was at her house this morning, she was going through a box of old recipes. And I'm talking old, old recipes, the kind that haven't seen the light of day for years. Rich desserts and sauces and the like, everything made from scratch (except the ones where you dump mushroom soup all over some kind of meat and call it a meal).

Well, wasn't that just the most felicitous kind of serendipity for me? Until I got there, I think she was actually throwing most everything away, knowing that no one would ever use them again. Until I got there, and she started showing them to me. I'm a bigger packrat than she ever was, and I couldn't let my grandmother's tamale loaf get into the paper shredder. I just couldn't.

Some recipes were handwritten. Others were typed on index cards with somebody's old Underwood. Many were clipped out of newspapers and magazines. Some were even printed off various web sites. I helped her throw some out, keeping the ones that looked interesting. Too many of them looked way too interesting to me.

Then she reached into the cabinet and pulled out a whole pile of cookbooks. I don't know if I'll ever cook anything from any of them, but I'll have that option, because they're now cluttering my house instead of Mom's. Obviously, I can never move.

14 September 2004

Crook of the birch.

I haven't really had a chance to look through my inheritance yet, so I'm not sure what I have. I do know I have a barbecue book, a seafood book and a garlic book. I have a recipe for "Wine" that starts with four cans of frozen Welch's grape juice and ends with this instruction: "Put balloon (5 size) over mouth of jug and let sit 21 days or until balloon goes down."

Now if saving that from the recycle truck isn't worth a little extra clutter around the house, I don't know what is.

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Barry Bonds' big mistake was probably hitting an RBI triple in the first inning, because the Astros walked him the next four times he came to the plate. But the Giants got plenty of hits from the rest of the lineup, plus another dazzling performance from pitcher Noah Lowry, who is now 6-0 in his first major league season. The Astros were red hot when they came into San Francisco, but tonight's 5-1 Giant win has cooled them off. Plus, it brought the Giants to within a half game of the division lead.

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One year ago: Hovering
"I waited and waited, but the shoe never dropped. I guess that's why the expression mentions the 'other' shoe. If you're waiting for the first shoe to drop, you might not exhale for a long, long time."

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