Sunday, May 31, 2009

Will the Rams Sign Vick?

I read a little NFL gossip on the Web tonight, and it sounds like the Rams might be interested in bringing Vick to StL.

It'll be interesting to see how the PR department spins the acquisition of Vick if they do acquire him, but from a football standpoint Vick might make some sense for the Rams.

What do you all think?

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Fumbling Toward Culinary Talent: Stir-Fried Kale

Up until recently I hadn't eaten kale much at all. In fact, the only dish I remember eating with that veggie was some manner of a "Portuguese Fisherman's Soup." And that was last year.

Since I like greens, I figured I'd try out kale this season in my garden. Today I stupidly cut the two whole kale plants instead of simply cutting the outer leaves for continuous growth, which I found out I could do later this evening. Now I only have six plants instead of eight. So dumb.

Regardless, here's a basic recipe for some quickly cooked greens:

1 Vidalia onion cut into rings
3 cloves of garlic cut thinly
2 bunchs of kale, stemmed and chopped roughly
1-2 tablespoons of olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
A little bit of white wine vinegar

Using a large cast iron skillet, I softened the onions over medium heat until cooked pretty well. Then I added the garlic for about a minute, kicked up the heat to medium-high, and threw in the kale. I turned it over for maybe 4-5 minutes, and the greens reduced in size a bunch.  After taking the kale out and putting into a bowl, I added a little bit of white wine vinegar, and it was ready to serve. 

Friday, May 29, 2009

The Chuck Norris of Shirts

A friend of mine passed on this link from about the benefits and joy that the "Three Wolf Moon T-Shirt" provides to its wearers.

Click HERE to view the shirt and pick from reading the 860 customer reviews. Funny stuff people.

Music Friday: "Shimmer and Shine"

Click HERE for a song from Ben Harper and his new backing band's album entitled White Lies for Dark Times.

I've only listened to the album a couple of times so far, but I think it's one of his best albums although Live from Mars and Both Sides of the Gun are really solid albums.

Thursday, May 28, 2009


I would have never guessed that a stock pot would be comfortable, but Quinn found it useful as a chair.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Fumbling Toward Culinary Talent: Tapenade Part Deux

I've already chronicled a previous tapenade I've made in an earlier post, but this recipe is slightly different and better.

Here are the ingredients:
Almost a full can of large black olives
1/2 of jar of sliced Spanish olives
2 large cloves of garlic
2 pieces of fire roasted red bell peppers
1/2 teaspoon of balsamic vinegar
Extra virgin olive oil, maybe a tablespoon
A smidge of Sriracha hot sauce
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon of Boquet Garni

Put all the ingredients in a food processor and chop it until it's thoroughly mixed. I like this recipe better because of the addition of the roasted bell pepper and Sriracha.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Dead End

The Nasty family were up in Waterloo, IA this weekend for my nephew's wedding reception (they got married in Vegas), and the couple had their reception at the Isle Casino just south of town.

I'm not much of gambling man, so I didn't try my luck. But there was a sign that offered a great deal of significance to the benefits that the casino provides to Waterloo's economy as a whole.

As you drive up to the Isle, the sign says, "Dead End."

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Music Friday: "Mental Phrasing"

Since we're heading out early to visit my parents in the great state of Iowa, I'm posting early.

Click HERE to enjoy a great tune by Roy Hargrove.

Snippets from the May Harper's Index

If you've ever read Harper's, they always have a "Harper's Index" each month that offers many interesting factoids that relate to what's going on with the country and other matters.

Here are some interesting ones I thought I'd share from May:
Percentage change in the past year in the number of U.S. cars and trucks repossessed: +12
Percentage change in the number of leisure boats repossessed: +72

Percentage of all U.S. men over twenty who are now unemployed or not seeking work: 31
Estimated percentage of Bush Administration political appointees who are currently unemployed: 70

Gallons of coal ash released into a Tennessee River last December by a power plant: 1,100,000,000
Factor by which this exceeds the volume of oil spilled by the Exxon Valdez: 101

Reactions? Thoughts?

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Some Old Photos

Here are some photos from winter to remind us of what we're missing with all this good weather, and they also show off my kids.

In Case

In case you readers didn't believe I am gardening, here's some verification.

I've been eating a lot of lettuce lately.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Fumbling Toward Culinary Talent: Liver & Onions

A couple of days ago I did an old-fashioned meal--liver and onions. So you liver lovers (I prefer chicken over beef), enjoy this basic recipe.

3/4 lb. calf's liver cut into small pieces
1 Vidalia onion cut into half rings
2 tablespoons of butter
2 teaspoons water
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon of Worchester sauce
1/2 cup of the wine you're drinking at the time (for me, it was a Cabernet)

Cut up the onion and brown the onions in the butter. Once the onions are the way you prefer them, take out the onions and then put your liver into the pan. 

Brown the liver on one side for approximately three minutes on medium heat, turn the liver and cook it with the onions for maybe two more minutes. I cooked my liver a bit too much, so it was a little chewy. Watch that.

Take the liver and onions out of the pan, and dump in the water, juice, sauce, and wine to deglaze the pan. Cook that for a short time (thirty seconds), and pour that liquid over the dish.

Sit down, relax, and enjoy the offal.

Music Friday: "Carolina On My Mind"

Click HERE for a great cover of this James Taylor song by Alison Krauss.

Have a good weekend, folks.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Diving In

High-schoolers diving
Into a campus dumpster,
It's graduation.
One of the trio surfaces 
Triumphant with a beer bong.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Highway 51

The part of Highway 51 in Mississippi is a well-known two-lane road.

As you can read about HERE, there's a book of photography out that has ninety images of the famous Southern highway. The link provided from the Garden & Gun website provides fourteen of the images. 


Music Friday: "Take This Job and Shove It"

Click HERE for a classic country song by Johnny Paycheck.

While I'll be in the office two days next week and a good part of this summer because of administrative duties in contrast to other professors who actually have summers "off," it's the last official day of the spring semester, and graduation is tomorrow.

Many of graduates might someday soon think of this song as they're about to quit one of their first jobs they got out of school. I know it was a song I thought of when I strolled out of the A/H building (now known as McClain) at Truman.   

Tuesday, May 5, 2009


I saw a car yesterday that I thought I'd never see in the parking lot of Rural King in Coles County. There was a brand new Think car sitting in the lot. The car looks like the one above, and it's an electric vehicle that runs approximately 112 miles on a single charge.

And this Norwegian automaker plans to have a plant in the US, as you can read about by clicking HERE.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Gentleman Gardener

A few weekends ago I close to doubled my garden. The Nasty garden has expanded.

At the moment here's what I have planted: two rows of carrots, two rows of Black-Seeded Simpson lettuce, one row of Concept lettuce, one row of Ermosa lettuce, two rows of green beans, one row of okra, one row of collard greens, one row of kale, one grape tomato plant, one medium-sized "Celebrity" tomato plant, one flat leaf parsley planting, one large-leaf basil plant, one planting of dill, a red bell pepper plant, a yellow bell pepper plant, and one tabasco pepper plant.

I love myself some greens, so I look forward to the collards and kale.

Catholic T-Shirt

I was at my daughter's "academy" for gymnastics and dance today after I ran a few errands (since it's a two-hour session for gymnastics, you look for things to do), and I noticed a woman wearing an odd t-shirt.

The shirt had the obligatory fish symbol on it with "Catholic Church" in bold letters above the fish. Below the symbol, for added emphasis, it said "Since 33 A.D." along with "Original." 

The pagans have been around longer.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Crazy Saturday Night

We had a sitter over to watch the kids last night, and here's what we did with our free time: we went to dinner and then went to Home Depot.

Next thing you know we'll go antiquing with our free time.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Music Friday: "Constructive Summer"

Click HERE for a song from The Hold Steady, a song that exemplifies what will be the gist of some college students' summers after finals are over.

Sort of like "The Summer of the 22s."