I know I haven’t been around in a long, long time and I do owe you all an explanation, but for now, there’s something more important I need to touch on. I will be back..and definitely back soon with the end of the BBFL story, but at this moment, I need to talk about a wonderful, amazing lady.
If you’re a regular reader of my blog, when I’ve put up Daring Bakers or Daring Cooks challenge posts, you’ve probably seen me talk about my friend, Lis, on occasion- the co-founder of The Daring Kitchen, – the girl I jokingly referred to as wifeypoo.
Lis passed away, suddenly, on November 12th. She was taken from us way, way, way too soon, and I just know she’s really pissed off.
I’m so heartbroken.
Today, via a tribute page set up by Kelly from Sass and Veracity, current and former Daring Kitchen members/friends are paying tribute to Lis with blog posts and/or instagrams, facebook and tweets in her honor. We were asked to choose anything from the many Daring Kitchen challenges to bake or cook in her honor. Some are baking pretzels, the ‘first’ Daring Bakers challenge, which was just her and Ivonne wanting to bake something they never baked before and post it on their blogs simultaneously. This became a monthly thing, and soon more and more bloggers joined in. Voila – The Daring Bakers was born.
I wish I could bake something, but I can’t at this time, so I just linked back to the first Daring Bakers challenge I participated in, in 2008..and the first ever Daring Cooks challenge back in 2009.
Lis, along with Ivonne, were pioneers in getting food bloggers together to cook or bake a challenging treat once a month – creating a community where we could share our culinary successes and failures – supporting each other and having fun throughout the process. This led to others starting food blogger cooking and baking groups..but Daring Bakers, prior to the addition of Daring Cooks, and finally The Daring Kitchen as a whole, was and will always be the first.
When I joined The Daring Bakers in 2008, Lis took me under her wing and made me feel so welcome. We became fast friends..and when I was going through a difficult time in my life, she was there….even sending me aromatherapy to soothe and relax me. This is the kind of person she was, unselfish, kind and caring. She was also one of the funniest people I’ve ever known…always bringing me to tears of laughter during one of our several hours long phone conversations. I’m also going to miss her mega long emails keeping me up to date on what was going on in her life. They always made me smile. Even when things were not going well, she had a way of putting a funny spin on them to lessen the bulk of it all. Her glass was always half-full.
I’ve been reading through her emails the past few days, and the tears came a’ callin’ when I realized I’d never be typing lamiacuc and waiting for the rest of her email to come up underneath so I didn’t have to type it all in when replying to her…ever again.
The first ever Daring Cooks challenge..Ricotta gnocchi, although mine were more like Gnudi.
If you didn’t know Lis, you can get a taste of her amazing wit and humor at her food blog, La Mia Cucina. She stopped posting about 3 years ago, but that never stopped me from begging her to start again….especially for posts like THIS ONE. I was literally crying every time I read it.
I was just reading her post from the Daring Bakers cheesecake challenge, April ’09. She wanted to make a cheesecake using the flavors of her favorite ice cream…Haagen Dazs Caramel Cone. Bittersweet fits of laughter when I read this -
HEY YOU PEOPLE THAT LIVE IN MY NECK OF THE WOODS.. DON’T YOU DARE! GO BUY THIS ICE CREAM. IF I GO TO BUY IT AND IT’S SOLD OUT I WILL HUNT! YOU! DOWN! AND! BEAT! YOU! ABOUT! THE! HEAD! AND! SHOULDERS! WITH! MY! HUSBAND’S! DIRTY! TUBE! SOCKS!
On the other hand, his cotton, reinforced toe socks were not to be used as weapons.
“…when the day comes that I stop breathing.. I’d like to be buried, completely submerged, in Caramel Cone ice cream.”
If only, Lis..if only.
Having said all that, The Daring Kitchen was Lis’s baby and it made so many people happy. If she had a last wish, keeping it alive would be it.
Sleep well, wifeypoo…and rest assured, The Daring Kitchen will continue on exactly how you’d want it to. We will see to that. xoxoxo.
Tags: blueberries, Blueberry Lemon Cake, Coconut Oil, Greek Yogurt, Lemon, Wallaby's Yogurt, Yogurt
I forgot to add the baking powder. This is why the loaf cake you see, which I made about a month ago, is flat on top. It was still delicious and moist, but not something I wanted to put up here. If you recall..I mentioned ‘so-so potential posts’ in my last post. This is one of them, but it’s such a delicious cake (it could be considered a very moist quick bread too, since the preparation is more of a quick bread method than a cake method), I didn’t want to hold it back based on aesthetics, and making it again just for aesthetics..would have been ridiculous. We all make mistakes in the kitchen, and this is one of mine.
I annihilated my left wrist last week. I’m okay outside of pain, a feeling of uselessness, and typing with one hand (poke typing). If I hadn’t annihilated my wrist, you would be looking at and drooling over (one can hope, right?) a gorgeous, multi-layered cake loaded with texture and cool flavors – and topped with a candle, to celebrate 5 years of blogging..well, 5 years plus two or so weeks of blogging. I can’t even be on time for my blogiversary.
Apparently, it was not to be, and now it’s my 5 year and three or so week blogiversary, so just one whoohoo. OK, celebration over. I’m sorry..but I’m in pain and I’m pissed. I’m constantly injuring myself in such stupid ways..and not being able to cook or bake is always bummer.
Having said all that, I want to apologize to all who are reading Bad Boy First Love and have waited so long between parts. Some of you are ticked off, as I would be. In fact, I’d be rip-roaring mad and frustrated as hell. There’s not many more annoying things in life than starting a story and not being able to finish it because the person writing it takes so damn long to write it. Injury, illness, life etc, keeps getting in the way..killing my ‘flow’. I also think that trying to end it with every part since part 11 has played a role, so I decided to end it when it ends...no pressure should enhance productivity/creativity (knock wood), or so they say.
I was initially going to end the story HERE, with a nice, little epilogue to tie it up in a neat bow, but after factoring in a combination of enjoying reliving it and a few people asking me to stretch it out, I decided to keep it going for a few more parts – little did I know where I’d end up – GEESH. I loved writing it up until about half-way through, but once my grief at the time ebbed, it became harder and harder to remember and give you all plenty of details, so I refrained until I could give you a full, detailed (as best I could) story with each part.
I can’t tell you how many times I scrapped most of what I wrote because it just wasn’t enough detail wise, so I’d lie down, put on some music and chill…remembering every tiny detail again until I could finally put into text. As you can already tell, I scrapped ‘the end’ from the part I split in half (part 20), and started over. It was too ‘cliff notey’- you would have hated it.
On another note..I want to thank Stacie for sending me a bunch of coupons for free Wallaby Nonfat Greek Yogurt a few months ago. I feel awful that it took me a while to get a post up using Wallaby, but all of the above applies here too. Trust me when I say I’ve fallen in love with Wallaby. If I hadn’t, I wouldn’t have used it in this cake and I wouldn’t be waxing poetic on how custardy, super creamy and all around amazing it is ( I will never shill a product I don’t like). But, the best part is, it’s nonfat and it tastes just as rich and feels just as creamy as any full fat Greek yogurt (Yes, I compared), if not more so. In fact, I’m going to go as far as saying that this yogurt is similar to a rich pudding or custard dessert. I’m now completely addicted and crave it at least once a day.
Whether plain or with fruit in a separate pourable container attached, so you can control the amount of fruit you want in your yogurt, you cannot go wrong with whatever you choose. I’d give it 1000 thumbs up, if I had 1000 thumbs.
Finally, this cake is a combination of two recipes..This one and This one. I lightened it up with Wallaby Nonfat Greek Yogurt and made it a little healthier with coconut oil. I also added lightly smashed blueberries because, well..I just felt like smashing them before adding them – hoping for the best. It’s moist, fluffy, and delicious…the perfect amount of lemon contrasting beautifully with the sweet, juicy blueberries, and that was minus the baking powder! Don’t forget to add it like I did!
Smashed Blueberry Lemon Loaf Cake
Yield : About 8 servings
nonstick neutral oil spray
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
3/4 cup Wallaby Organic Nonfat Greek yogurt
1/2 cup coconut or vegetable oil (Make this cake 100% fat-free using apple sauce in place of oil!)
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups whole blueberries, lightly smashed
1/4 cup flour for coating the smashed blueberries*
* If you’d prefer to leave the blueberries whole, only add 2 tablespoons flour to coat them, and add two tablespoons flour to the 1 1/4 cups flour in the batter.
1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1/3 cup sugar
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
UPDATE: A reader who made this said it’s even fabulous without the lemon syrup and glaze. To quote her; ” Alone, it is one big, moist blueberry muffin. All the extra bells and whistles are not needed for taste or calories. The cake is delish!!”
1. Spray a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan with vegetable oil or any other neutral oil spray then coat with flour and tap out excess.
2. Whisk the 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, 2 teaspoons baking powder, and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt together in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, rub the the tablespoon of lemon zest into the 1 cup of sugar until moist and kind of clumpy, then add to flour mixture..stirring until combined.
3. In a medium bowl or large measuring cup, whisk together 3/4 cup Wallaby Nonfat Greek yogurt, 1/2 cup coconut or vegetable oil, 2 large eggs, and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract until smooth.
4. Pour the wet ingredients on top of the dry ingredients and stir together until just combined.
5. Place all the blueberries in a large ziplock bag. Seal it and press down on the bag with a plate until the blueberries are slightly smashed Open the bag and dump in the 1/4 cup flour and seal it closed. Shake until all of the smashed blueberries are coated with flour..like Shake n’ Bake. Gently fold the flour coated, smashed blueberries into the batter – making sure they separate and don’t clump together.
6. Pour the batter into the greased loaf pan and top with extra blueberries if desired. Bake in a preheated 350 F oven, middle rack, until puffed and golden brown on top..about 50 – 55 minutes. A test skewer should come out clean.. a few moist crumbs sticking to it is fine. Let the cake cool in pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes..
7. While the cake is cooling, in a small saucepan stir together the lemon juice, zest and sugar. Cook over medium heat until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture is clear.
8, Invert the cake onto a cooling rack and place the rack over a baking sheet. Poke a few holes in the top of the cake with a skewer. Pour the lemon syrup over the cake. Let the cake soak and cool completely.
9. Stir together the lemon juice and confectioner’s sugar until smooth, then pour over the cooled cake. Let set before serving.
If you’re tuning in for the first time, here are the previous parts to this story. Part One is HERE, Part Two is HERE , Part Three is HERE, Part Four is HERE, Part Five is HERE, Part Six is HERE, Part Seven is HERE, Part 8 is HERE, Part 9 is HERE, Part Ten is HERE, Part 11 is HERE, Part 12 is HERE, Part 13A is HERE, Part 13B is HERE, Part 14A is HERE, Part 14B is HERE , Part 15 is HERE, Part 16 is HERE , Part 17 is HERE and Part 18 is HERE, and Part 19 is HERE., Part 20 is HERE.
“You ready? Hockey Guy asked
I slid off the pillar. ”Yep”
We walked together out of the quad, but once we were half way down Huntington ave, toward one of the gazillion pizza places on campus (at a city school, the campus is the city), I stopped. I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t grab and eat a slice of pizza with him because the pizza was no innocent, pre-dinner snack here – it was a pathway to a hook-up, a crusty, cheesy, saucy metaphor for ”I wanna be startin’ something’. If there had been no sparks between us, it would have been just pizza, but sparks were rampant, so pizza was a slice out of the pie of cheat, and there was a good chance we could finish the whole pie.
I didn’t like pizza that much, but I did enjoy writing that.
I stopped short. There was a test that day in the class I blew off, but I’d missed exams in other classes and was allowed to make them up in the professor’s office, which is what I had planned had I not had my pizza revelation.
“Damn, I think I’m going to have to take a rain check on the pizza” I said as I started to back up, “There’s an exam today in this class, and I want to take it while everything is fresh, instead of making it up and having to refresh, you know?”
He looked disappointed. I felt disappointed. BUT, I was doing the right thing. There was no way our pizza run was ending with just pizza. I was superstitious and convinced karma would take Dreamboat away from me again if I rekindled whatever it was we had together in the first place.
“Oh…” he said woefully, then looked right into my eyes and asked…his New England accent really popping – I’d never heard it that strong before “Are ya sure ya nawt backing out because ya feelin’ guilt over feelin’ something?”
Wow, I thought..it was really brazen of him to come right and say exactly what we were both thinking. But I lied anyway..”Nooo, I really don’t want to have to make up this exam”
He looked at the clock on the roof of a nearby bank. “It’s quarter aftah…you’ve missed 10 minutes of it already”
I had already started walking backwards during this exchange, at first slow, then quickening with each step. Suddenly I was desperate to vamoose.
“Can we do it another time?” I asked urgently.
He pulled himself together quickly, shaking off the heat, then disappointment, of the past 20 minutes.
“Sure, I’d like that” he said with a smile, but I could still see a glimmer of disappointment in his chocolate brown eyes. I felt it too, so the urgency to get away was even more fierce than it had been just seconds before. - damn, he’s so handsome, I thought to myself, but quickly snapped out of it to avoid pizza perfidy .
“Bye!” I shouted as I turned and started to jog, making sure I looked authentically rushed.
That was the last time I saw him.
For the rest of college, barring a few crushes and an almost kiss, I remained piously faithful to Dreamboat.
Once home for good, that summer and life couldn’t have been any better….for a lazy bum. I was offered (and took) a part-time job at a popular tanning salon in an upscale 2 level mini-mall in in Fort Lee..working 3 nights a week, 5 pm to 10 pm and every other Saturday, 10 am until 2 pm, the only day I had to wake up before 2 pm, unless I was spending any of my days off at my raven haired friend’s pool. The best sun was 10 am until 2 pm. Couldn’t miss that!!
Dreamboat had ceased with the baby talk, but was now sliding into the move in together talk. I was not ready, so it started getting to the point where whenever we were together, I would whisper to my conscience ‘please don’t let him bring up moving in together’, over and over, sort of like Harry Potter wearing the sorting hat – ’not Slytherin, Not Slytherin’, but not out loud. I would actually tense up the minute the ’talk’ started, trying to segue into something else, like,”How ’bout them Yankees?!’ or a kiss or ten, which always worked.
Outside of fun, sun, love, and trying to avoid move in together conversations, not necessarily in that order, my priorities were non-existent. I got a brand new car, my dream car. I was told we were just going to look – stressing just look - at cars, so I brought Blondie and Raven along (my two best friends you’ve read about throughout this story – I decided to give them some kind of moniker rather than ‘my friend’ or ‘my blonde friend’.. etc). We walked into the dealership and there she was…smack in the middle of the showroom floor, gleaming with come hither rims, begging me to open her door and plant my butt on her plush seats. I freaked..I couldn’t stop freaking..loudly. It was a manual transmission, a stick shift. Dreamboat had told me how ridiculous it would be to buy a car like this in automatic.
“You want to drive a car like that..take advantage of it’s performance, not just step on the gas”
With Dreamboat’s words echoing in my head,,I ran my hand over the stick shift. I would learn to drive stick for this baby. I basked in her luscious new car smell..inhaling over and over.
I didn’t want to get out when my father told me to, I was planning on sleeping in her if that’s what it took to convince him how much we belonged together. He was being incredibly mean..telling me to shut up several times in a harsh whisper. I got out of Dreamcar and walked out of the dealership in tears, not realizing at the time that he wanted to make a deal with the salesman and I was effing that up, big time.
Within a half an hour, we were driving home. My friends driving my father’s car and my father driving my brand new car while I sat in the passenger’s seat..wildly excited, but at the same time a little sullen since I didn’t know how to drive stick.
The minute we pulled into the driveway..I was out of the car in a flash, running upstairs to my room to call Dreamboat (circa the days when very few people had cell phones and they were huge and $$$) and tell him the amazing news. He was extremely happy for me, but I could also sense a slight underlying feeling of she didn’t have to pay a cent or lift a finger to get an amazing car like that. He worked his whole life for small luxuries. I felt like a spoiled brat, so I had to add in that part of what paid for the car was my money…well, money my paternal grandmother had set aside for years and split up equally between me, my sister and two cousins, in her will. Then I realized it sounded stupid..it wasn’t money I earned, unless you count a deep love for my grandmother, ‘earning’ it. Nope, I didn’t think so…and neither did he because he didn’t respond.
Trying to learn to drive stick from my father culminated in too many fights, it was hopeless. My father admittedly has no patience. Dreamboat had volunteered, but he worked all day and Saturdays, and learning to drive stick on the roads at night scared the crap out of me. Raven and Blondie took turns teaching me, stress free, with lots of laughs; like when I couldn’t get into gear and the car would start shaking..
“OH NO…POPCORN MACHINE!” Blondie would yell..her voice shaking with the car, sounding Munchkinesque (We represent the Lollipop Guild…..). Raven would make some kind of wise crack from the back seat, like..”I’d like to keep my $%^&ing lunch down, thank you.”
In about a week, save for getting into first gear at a red light on a steep hill without the fear of rolling back and smashing into the car behind me, I felt confident enough to take the wheel alone.
I couldn’t wait to show Dreamboat that I could drive a car via clutch/stick. I’d watched him change gears probably hundreds of times, then take my hand in between, always thinking ‘How does he do that so effortlessly without thinking about which gear to put it in?” Well, now I knew. I drove cautiously to his house, dreading the steep hill he lived on, but I did it and after watching me drive stick as a passenger, giving me a few tips here and there, he was behind the wheel seeing “…what this baby could do”. I felt so happy..I wanted to share this car with him.
After about an hour, he drove to a park with a beautiful view. I sat on a swing while he pushed my legs back and forth, a beer in one hand and a serious look on his face. I knew that look and I knew what was coming.
“So, now that you’ve got your own transportation, are you ready to start looking for a place?”
I forgot to mention that not having my own car was one easy way out. Wherever we lived, whether it be down the shore or North Jersey, how would I get around? He needed his car and there was no way my parents were officially handing over one of their cars to me, they stood firm at borrowed. Daily public transportation was not an option for me – this wasn’t Boston with ‘The T’ right at your doorstep.
Now that the ‘no car’ excuse was no longer in my pocket, I fessed up.
“Can we wait a few months? I just need to settle back into life here before making a big move.” The truth is, I couldn’t get a picture of me in a housecoat, rollers in my hair, and fuzzy slippers, like his Mom puttered around their house in, out of my head, three little kids screaming and pulling at my hem, another one on the way, by the time I was 25.
I braced myself for his response, which I was sure would be negative.
Sure, sweetheart” he replied with a smile…”A few months is no big deal”
HUH? It shocked me..I was waiting for something to spin it the other way, but it never came. I jumped off the swing into his arms and bit his cheek playfully. Then I realized how it looked. I was celebrating him agreeing to my delaying us looking for a place together. What the hell was wrong with me? I immediately apologized, telling him the truth..I didn’t want to lose him because I wasn’t ready to take that step yet.
Then fate intervened, a sh*tty fate at that.
Just one week after learning to drive my new car, I was on my way to a DIY car wash when a car load of guys suddenly stopped in the middle of a quiet road in front of me. I beeped, but they didn’t budge. I assumed they were lost since it looked like they were reading maps, so I decided to back up and pass them on the left. Just as I started to pass them, they took a quick, sharp left, right into the front right end of my brand new car. It was smashed to smithereens, the headlight wasn’t even distinguishable.
I was beyond devastated. It was my fault and I knew it, since you don’t pass on the left no matter what the circumstance, unless you’re on a two or more lane highway. I sat on a rock and sobbed while the police took information from us, my face in my hands. I remember I was wearing an old, scrappy, tie-dye t-shirt and cut off jean shorts since I was going to wash and wax my new baby. I guess you could say I looked pretty granola. One of the guys from the crash walked over and asked..”Hey, are you a Dead fan?” For some reason, that made me cry even harder. Not to mention, I was scared as hell to tell my father. Naturally, he wasn’t very happy, but I won’t get into those details.
It’s funny how tiny, insignificant details like “Hey, are you a Dead fan?” stick with you forever when remembering pretty significant moments in life. It’s the first thing that comes to mind whenever I think about that awful late afternoon.
So, my brand new dream car was off to the body shop for several weeks or more, since parts needed to be ordered before they even started the work. Well, I guess I had the ‘excuse’ back in my pocket for a while. Not even a small consolation, just a stupid thought, which I had loads of at that age.
That night Dreamboat brought me flowers and let me snot all over his shirt when I cried with my face buried in it. After I finally stopped blubbering, we went to a sports bar and grill for some amazing burgers. As I stuffed my face, that serious look came over his face. I braced myself….then;
“I know you want to postpone moving in together, but I was thinking..If you want to get married first, we could do that” he said between sips of his beer.
How romantic, I thought, but marriage now? At 21? I wiped the ketchup off of my mouth. ”Are you proposing?” I asked in jest..stifling a giggle.
He threw me his dazzling smile and said “Maybe” with a wink. I laughed as I shoved some fries into my mouth. I was always told to never talk with my mouth full, but this little exchange merited it. ”Wheresh my ring?” I sort of spoke/giggled. Thankfully, he enjoyed me not taking it seriously;
“I do want to marry you, Goofy..even though you’ve got ketchup all over your chin” he said, as he wiped it off. I wanted to marry him too, in the worst way..just not for a few years.
Marriage really scared me at 21 – not to mention, I was having so.much.fun. with my friends. Most of them were not in very serious relationships at the time, so they were free to go out whenever the mood hit. Living together or marriage would surely limit that..especially one of my favorite jaunts, ‘Tower Records Runs’.
About once a week, my raven haired friend aka Raven, would come to my house around 9 or 10 pm on a night I didn’t work. I was usually napping because of my crazy sleep schedule. She would pull on my hair or bounce on the bed to wake me up, then whisper ”Come with me to Tower Records” “Tower Records” was code for a an all nighter (yes, NYC really doesn’t sleep) in the city. The reason she called it that was because she was amassing a monster collection of CD’s for her CD player in her new car, so we’d always head to Tower Records in Greenwich Village first, where she could peruse and purchase, usually racking up at least 10 new CD’s each time.
After that, it was wherever the night/early morning took us. We were legal now, so no place was left unvisited, from uptown to midtown to downtown – from the upper east side preppies to the downtown goth scene..we were everywhere. We would stay in the city until the sun started to come up..hitting tons of big and little nightclubs, rock bars, talking to people on the streets, visiting friends/parties..eating, drinking, etc. One night, out of the blue, some guy handed us a huge bunch of giant helium balloons on thick rope because I guess he was done selling them at 1 am. We ran down Columbus ave….this mass of giant, colorful balloons, some of which we sucked the helium out of, almost camouflaging us, shouting hello to anyone and everyone we passed…our temporary ‘chipmunk’ voices a perfect high G – handing some people balloons for their own helium recreation.
We basically just did whatever we wanted when the mood struck, let loose..no matter how kooky it was, and it was part of what made the ‘Tower Records Runs’ so special.
Naturally, Dreamboat didn’t like our ‘Tower Records’ excursions, and admonished me several times about it;
“Two young girls shouldn’t be all over the city at all hours of the night. You could get attacked..raped”
I listened and nodded, but still..it continued, fast forward to one night the following winter when we went to see the tree at Rockefeller Center and ended up hanging out with Emilio Estevez, Johnny Depp and a few of their friends. OK, not the real Emilio Estevez and Johnny Depp, but they looked so much like them, we initially thought it was them and couldn’t help but hang out with them when they started following and talking to us. They were seniors at St. John’s University and so much fun. After introductions and an hour of small talk, we were taking swigs from a bottle or two of cheap wine in paper bags that were passed around, and within a half hour we were singing Christmas songs off-key and laughing so damn hard, tears were drenching and freezing on my face.
It was a magical night.. the lights from the tree and streets sparkling around us..some blinking and twinkling into halos of red, green, blue and white..our noses and cheeks bright red from the cold as we sauntered up and down 5th ave and the surrounding streets making up funny and sometimes naughty stories for each gorgeous Christmas window. We even danced to a reggae band on one corner for a good half hour. Soon, we were all holding hands, running together. I guess I was pretty buzzed because for a good 20 minutes I didn’t notice that the our chain of hands had broken and it now was just me and Johnny Depp holding hands. There was an attraction developing, and that was when I knew it was time to go, and that maybe these city nights needed to be curtailed a bit..the temptation was too great. He asked for my number, and I admit, it was hard to say no, but I did, pulling out my well-punched boyfriend card.
Once I was in Dreamboat’s arms again the next night..I was glad I said no, chalking up my occasional attractions to other men as being young…and on that particular night, the wine. I loved him so much, it hurt, and I wasn’t going to do anything to eff that up. The only problem was his desire to make a serious, lifelong commitment so soon. One night, snuggled on his couch watching TV, he told me he had always planned to have kids by the time he was 25. 25 was a year and a half away for him. I asked if there was any leeway in that statement.
“For you, of course, but not too long” he said nonchalantly while running his fingers through my hair. It was then I realized we were in two totally different points in our lives. He was ready to start a family life..I was ready to start living life. I hoped things would change soon because at that moment I just loved being his girlfriend and the thought of marriage and living together was too heavy for my young brain. At the same time, the thought of losing him was also too heavy for my young brain,
Since his parents were slowly making a permanent move to their house down the shore, he was basically living with his brothers, becoming sort of the father figure..and he wanted out of that situation, which only made his need to shack up increase. This led to him getting a little snappier about things – short tempered. When we’d go out places, if a guy looked at me or just looked my way, he would react, and that had never happened before. He wouldn’t react instantly, but I could see his warning look..a sort of heavy-lidded glare, no discernible expression.. and if the guy looked again, he’d say something. One time he almost punched the guy.
I told him he was being ridiculous, especially since 1) I had no interest in anyone but him, and 2) Did he see me reacting to all of the girls who batted their eyes at him? (well, not since the shore incident with the girl on the pier who earned me the nickname ‘killer’, the summer before my freshman year of college.). He never really answered me, so I knew he meant business and let it go. I also knew a lot of it stemmed from having to sort of ‘wait’ for me to grow up.
The following April..on a chilly night after a movie, we ended up at a parking lot (where else?), the one where I first met his friends at the ‘engagement’ celebration. He pulled me up on a concrete ledge of a large, closed garage window. I remember I had my hair in a pony tail that night, an up pony tail, and I never wore my hair in an up pony tail. He’d been pulling on it all night..teasing me.
Yep..another one of those insignificant details that you never forget, as I mentioned above, but this one does tie in.
We stood on the ledge like two teenagers with nothing to do on a Saturday night..his car stereo blasting Led Zeppelin’s Heartbreaker. I hated Led Zeppelin back then. They were a bunch of old guys who screamed and hadn’t been together in like a million years. Now I love their music, and use their songs as my ring tones.
I looked at him staring out at the horizon to the right of the lot with his hands in his jean pockets..a light wind blowing his collar length, thick, silky hair in all different directions. He was actually wearing a jacket even though it wasn’t 10 below..a well-worn bomber jacket, and it looked good on him. I couldn’t help thinking what a great album cover photo his stance, with the wind in his hair, would make.
With my over-sized jean jacket and jeans with a rip in one knee, I felt like we were teenagers again.
It was like he was reading my mind.
He turned toward me, almost in slow motion, then walked over…pushing me up against the concrete wall, an arm on each side of me, locking me in.
“So, what time do you have to be home?” he teased, but I liked it. He used to ask me that on our first few nights out in North Jersey, my senior year of High School.
He didn’t wait for an answer, just started kissing me passionately, holding me firm against the wall. We made out to Led Zeppelin for I don’t remember how long, like teenagers, but I do remember when he broke the moment. He pulled back, looked me right in the eyes, his baby blues shooting hot lasers through my skull, and said;
“Are you ready to start looking for a place together? It’s going on a year now..I think it’s time.”
Suddenly a cop car pulled up and a police officer got out, shining an industrial size flashlight on us.
“What are you two kids doing here?” he asked in a loud, accusatory voice.
“We’re just hanging out, officer.” Dreamboat replied in a sarcastic tone. I felt sick, he was going to challenge a cop. I started shushing him and whispering/begging him to “Stop“.
The cop moved closer, shining the flashlight on a 6-pack of beer on the ground.
“I need to see some ID” the cop said, injecting a little sarcasm right back at Dreamboat.
“Dreamboat reached into his back pocket for his wallet, but not without sass. ”You gotta be kidding me..this is %$&ing bullsh*t, we’re just hanging out.”
I couldn’t believe what I was hearing..what had gotten into him??
That was more than enough to rile up the cop.
“OK, turn around and put your hands up against the wall!” he shouted
Part 22 coming soon.
Disclaimer: I was not compensated monetarily for my review of Wallaby Yogurt, but I did receive the product for free. All opinions expressed are my own.
Tags: eggs, En Croute, Ham, Julia Child, Michel Richard, Peppers, Puff Pastry, Spinach, Torte Milanese, Tourte Milanese
Remember when I told you about the computer crash of 2010, where I lost almost everything, mainly tons of photos of some of the best goodies I’ve ever made, most of them pretty labor intensive? You see, I was on this roll from September 2010 to January 2011 – a fancy shmancy crazy roll. Once or twice a week I was creating showstopping sweet and savory dishes like they were going out of style, and as luck would have it, getting some good clicks of them.
It was an amazing food blog run. I had about 7 posts lined up. The posts weren’t written, but the photos were ready – tucked in and snug as a bug in a rug in my photo program, waiting until I was ready to write and post. Then..the crash.
Tags: Arugula, arugula pesto, Basil, Fettuccine, garlic, Lemon, Olive Oil, pesto
About two weeks ago, the Sunday after the bombings in Boston..I started to think about life in a whole new perspective. It’s not a perspective I might follow – just errant thoughts…pondering….weighing options.
These thoughts led to my remembering an old friend, someone who was there for me through thick and thin for many years, as I was for her. She had some issues that were alarming at times, so much so that I found myself unconsciously pulling away from her bit by bit..a slow, torturous break-up. She was starting to scare me and I told her that many times. She would just laugh wickedly.