Monday, August 19


chickpeas, spices, potatoes, tomatoes, and spinach.

that's what dreams are made of.
i took three cloves of garlic and an inch and a half of skin-on organic ginger,
and minced 'em right up.
i added two quartered skin-on red potatoes;
a cup of chopped tomatoes;
half a minced jalapeno;
a tablespoon of cilantro stems, finely chopped;
and a full bunch of diced scallion bottoms,
all with one fat tablespoon of raw coconut oil sizzlin' over high heat.
i dropped down 1 tsp cumin;
1/2 tsp cardamon;
1 tsp ea GPOP;
1 tsp coriander;
1/4 ts nutmeg;
1/2 tsp cayenne;
1/2 tsp turmeric;
1/2 tsp dried mustard;
a shake of crushed red chili;
1/4 tsp black pepper;
1 tsp dry peri peri blend;
1/2 tsp guajillo chili powder;
and 2 T red lentils.
all that got toasted up, with that omega-level aromatic profile wafting through the house-
then i added 1 T tomato paste, and 2 T lime juice, and stirred it fast af.
once that was all good,
i poured in 1 cup of crushed tomatoes and 1 cup of warm water,
then covered it all with two huge handfuls of baby spinach-
that wilted and incorporated, and the potatoes cooked slowly in there, too.
i added 1 15 oz ca of drained rinsed chickpeas,
and let that all simmer for another 20 minutes.
and while that was bubblin' and softenin',
i steamed up that tri-color quinoa-basmati blend, neighbors.
a little exxxtra-nutrients for my rice is a great plan, man,.
and when i served it all up?
i used HOT jalapeno slices, and cilantro, and scallion sprankles,
and helped my burning face out with that scoople of plain unsweetened coconut yogurt.
this sh!t was burning my face off.
like, it retained literal heat,
and carried molto spice, too.
it was like i was in mortal combat with the bullsh!t cold i've been in a fight with all week.
and i was determined to win, and i did.
i like that.
yes, my stomach was a roiling hotbed of fire.
but this morning i feel somewhat back to normal, and that's cool.
i burned out all the bad times, and now we're ready for the good ones.
i hope y'all are ready too;
never quiet, never soft.....

making money having fun.

i drew on and zapped a tattoo yesterday that i thought was pretty cool.
i literally did the same exact tattoo, in color, OVER the tattoo i had just finished;
...and then we called it done.

nature wins,
and nature tattz are something you do a LOT of in the white mountains.
if you're a white girl who lives here, you absolutely have to have one.
rules is rules.
it looks cool, anyway:
i did a wolf on a liberated love machine who spends her free time
out in the dirty back roads of maine being scandalous.
that always makes me a little uncomfortable.
i mean,
it's sort of funny when someone is proud of being a human petri dish,
but also, it's really kind of NOT funny, too.
i dunno,  just do the sick wolf tattz and call it a day.

anyway, i drew most of it on and plugged away at all those choppy greys.
do i do cover-ups?
man, if it's a regular tattoo, i do it SO hard.
a rose, adapted from pinterest reference to cover an open-heart scar?
drawn on, with my marky markers, as usual.
yuuuuup...i doo-doo that freaky sh!t, no problem:

that's heavy duty.
did she cry?
happy tears?
i doubt it.
ouchie ones?
have you noticed how little talent i have for tattoo photos?
it's like the universe knows how invested in food i am,
and saves up all the skills for shots of my soup and stuff.
hey, neighbors-
did you just wonder aloud if i drew on an entire jewel cuff the other day?
i did.
was it swollen and angry when i finished?
do the pictures reflect that?

well, yes, they do.
you like that heavy glare?
i'm fired.
that's the news.
the next time i need a photo, i'm just going home instead.
i do a LOT of tattoos.
i take pictures of some, sometimes.
it isn't the tattoos' fault, it's 100% mine.
i suck at tatt-shots.
i'd rather do decent tattz and take bad photos,
then do dope photoshop on doo-doo buttery tattz.
that's a fact;
never quiet, never soft.....


i like pretzel twists way more than plot twists-
at least in real life, anyway.
i'm wild up in these woodsly mountaintops for
those twisted boiled baked brown bread loops.
check 'em out:

nice, right?
i mean, i know it, i'm just glad you do, too.
i got vegan butter for dippin'.
i also have scallion and toasted dill seed activated vegan creamchee' as well.
AND, just because too much is the right amount,
i also fired up some grainy mustard, cut with horseradish dijon,
and taken to eleven with malt vinegar and caraway seeds.
it's not doing it i believe's OVERdoing it, or not doing it at all.
coarse sea salt is awesome.
big ol' crystals of flavor heightening hottness are what you want,
when what you want is a DÜDI BOI SUMMER breakfast twist.
i use 'em liberally on top of my boiled baddies, bro.
that's what's good.
and if you really want full-sized super-expert awesomeness,
here's the recipe for the whole thing:
preheat your oven to 450℉
in a small pot, warm up 3/4 cup non-dairy milk, + 3 T vegan butter.
heat it up to let the butter, then remove it and let it cool a bit-
in a cup, combine 2 T real new hampshire maple syrup,
1 tsp bread machine yeast,
and 1/4 cup + 2 T warm water, and let it bloom.
in your stand-upright power-mixer,
with a dough hook attachment affixed firmly in place,
knead up the following:
1 tsp sea salt;
1 T olive oil;
2 cups king arthur bread flour;
1 cup dark rye flour;
1 pkg fast-actin' yeast;
1 tsp baking soda;
1/4 cup rolled oats;
2 T wheat bran.
add the milky butter,
and the maple water,
and give it a powerful beatin' for 11 minutes.
cover it and let it rest and rise.
in a BIG pot, bring 8 cups of water,
and four heaped tablespoons of baking soda and a lotta salt to a boil while the dough rises.
cover a baking tray or two with parchment
when your dough ball has doubled in size,
divide it into 8-16 balls, y'all...depending on whether you want knots of braids or whatever.
i got sixteen full-sized sexxxy boys out of this batch,
rolled out, twisted up, and set aside for five more minutes-
i boiled them in that big pot in batches 4 for thirty seconds each side,
then arranged them evenly on the trays, salted them up,
and baked two trays full for 14-17 minutes until they looked TIIIIIGHT.
a deep  golden brown, with luxurious texture is what you want here.
you can see it up there.
i LOVE pretzels.
in fact, i prefer them to the crunchy potato alternatives almost always.
however, i'm verrry whatever about that mustard.
the rest is excellent of course, but i don't dip more than once in that musty sh!t.
i dunno if i'd be more interesting if i liked it, but i'm trying not to rule it out.
it's just that it doesn't make me enjoy anything extra,
so it's just not really worth it.
i'd probably skip it entirely if it wasn't such a staple of soft pretzel reality.
rules is rules after all.
august is in full swing over here,
and allllll the tattoos are all booked up slid for the rest of the month.
i s'pose that's good?
it makes me feel tired just thinking about it.
then again,
i think i'm just tired no matter what.
that's just how it is.
i just woke up feeling decongested and uncompressed for the first time in a week.
i like that.
i guess that means i'm ready for another 'nother august monday to try to bring me down;
never quiet, never soft.....

Saturday, August 17


i do alllllll the money-tatts.
the ones that've been posted on the first page of an internet image search on all browsers.
the ones that you see the best fifteen examples of,
and assume that only fifteen strangers across the globe have the same tattoo as you.
the ones that pay alllll the bills around these parts.
i do those.
i don't ONLY do those.
but i do-doo a whole holy helluva lotta'vem.
and that's fine, honestly.
AMPERSAND TATTOO is an inclusive spot.
the other day a dude came in, got tattooed by nate,
then walked over to the giant wall of original art and said:
i want that one.
so i also tattooed him with a freehand version of a skull and crossbones.

i like that a LOT.
that's only the third time that's ever happened in two years of operations.
do more of that.
it will make you more appreciated, neighbors.
trust me.
making our own original art is about a billion times more rewarding
than making money off of another 'nother redo of a pinterest tatt.
most folks can't imagine how those tow things are any different,
and that's why they only get bam-bam bum-bum butterbombs
instead of wild-style tatty daddy dopeness.
either one is gonna help keep the lights on,
the main difference is how much of a toll it takes on my eternal soul
as the samesies day in and day out chip away at everything
that ever even made me want to do tattoos in the first place.
oh, is that too much insight into the day-to-day doldrums of a DÜDI BOI SUMMER?
tell me about it, bruh.
i live it.
i still would rather do ordinary tattoos all day than do roofing for an hour ever.
i'd still rather do mediocre biker tattz than shovel asphalt even once.
i'd for sure prefer to do a day of infinity symbols with words and birds
than treat myself to a casual friday applebee's lunch break.
i AM grateful for the time i have been given,
don't  misunderstand me.
but i'm also a little bit greedy and desperate for something just a hair better.
if you aren't trying to improve your circumstance, you might be F*ing up.
i'm not sayin'.....i'm just sayin';
never quiet, never soft.....


i've lived in the Folk Life & Liberty Fortress for ten mutha-F*ing years already.

holy sh!t, i had totally forgotten that i closed on
and moved into
and began the journey of warrior poetry
and stagnated home improvement
and self-discovery
all a full blown decade a ago.
like, ten years and two+ weeks, actually.
time flies past so fast i genuinely feel like i'm still just thirty-three and hopeful,
instead of old, busted, broken, broke.....and dope.
that's the thing-
this may be a haunted house;
it may be dilapidated and outdated and dark and dirty...
but so am i.
it needs a ton of work to even be considered functional.
does that sound like anybody you know?
it's weird looking and full of surprises and problems
and loaded with whole corridors
of largely unexplored interesting recessed treasures and tragedies.
and it's been ten freaking years.
in a row.
and i forgot.
that says something about how busy this summer has been.
i'm just swept away in a whirlwind of regular-A* money tatts,
and the race to stockpile a few bucks for the looooong winter.
the gettin' stops gettin' good in a few weeks,
and that's when the budget gets tighter,
and the days feel shorter,
and the dark gets deeper,
and all the best parts about sweaters and apples kick in at the expense
of light and warmth and profits.
and here i am, ten years into living in this largely unrepaired old manly manor,
in the cool shade of these looming and dangerous trees,
thinking about what comes next.
it probably isn't gonna be here forever.
that's sad, sorta,
but nothing ever really stays the same anyway.
things change,
circumstances arise,
life keeps going,
and it all continues to really happen,
even when it moves so slowly you can't see the progress;
never quiet, never soft.....


i made a F*ing expert pizza.
i did.
and by the time my tired oven was hot enough to fire it up,
the light was limited and the pictures were rubbish-
and that's disappointing.

why's it purple?
because bad light makes bad photos.
it didn't get better:

and indoors, it was orange.
and y'know what's even worse?
i have a summer cold, and i couldn't even taste it.
bummertime, neighbors.
for sure.
it's time for bed when the pee eye zee zee ayy can't boost your mood
or heal your ills.
it was probably amazing,
but i ruined it with bad timing and worn-out weary headcoldin' ailments.
i'd rather sleep forever than not enjoy pizza.
that's word;
never quiet, never soft.....

Wednesday, August 14


crispy garam crusted curry tofu,
with sriracha mayo,
and mixed leaves with pea shoots for texture;
and lemon scallion tomatoes,
and red onion,
and radishes for crunch,
and cucumber because it's expert.
check it:

you KNOW that the naan is homemade, neighbors.
i doo-doo that freaky sh!t.
how else am i supposed to have a DÜDI BOI SUMMER??!
there's even cilantro on there.
i love it, man.
i'm not sorry about it, but i do think it sucks if you're one of those people
with defective tastebuds who can't hang out with deliciousness like that.
the exxxtra-firm tofu was fried in exxxtra-hot raw coconut oil,
but first, it was double dredged in the mixxx.
the mixxx is how you make it good, guys.
that's a 50/50 blend of non-GMO organic cornstarch and chickpea flour,
plus your own preferential proportions of:
toasted cumin.
ground coriander.
pink salt.
black pepper;
dried mustard.
lemon zest.
if you can put things in a bowl and stir them, you can make this.
the tofu was dunked in that stuff as a batch of slabs,
then double dunked, for added flavor.
i mean, i'm not about to have weak mixxx, man.
and besides, too much is the right amount.
that's a fact.
what about that soft, supple, sexxxy ill na-naan?
well, i've covered that before.
here is the recipe.
if you're a wrapper you;re gonna wanna make that all the time,
the yeast version is superior,
although in a pinch i've made a baking soda/kapowder and that's good too.
scallion lemon tomatoes is exactly what it sounds like-
sliced tomatoes, minced up scallions, salt, pepper, and lemon juice.
i wish i had remembered to add avocado to these.
i literally had it right out on the counter, so i wouldn't forget.
and then i did.
i guess i was psyched about the sriracha mayo scene?
i added a little nootch, and a drop or five of lemon to the combo,
plus a tiny shake of cardamom, just because.
it was fancier, and i like it unnecessarily superfancy if possible.
i made a dinner.
i dunno what day this happened, actually, if i'm being honest.
i've been a little out of sorts lately.
but yesterday i had a sort of impromptu family get together out
and truthfully, for being something i think ordinary people just do and don;t think about?
it felt sooo cool...
usually, after work, i go home, and nate goes home,
and we don't talk or hang out,
and it's just over.
the day, i mean.
but yesterday,
i had the little kids, and their mom and dad, and even dylan all representing,
after a full studio hang out with tattoos and great friends and good talks and good times
and better art for better people poppin' off all damned day.
i had an overloaded enormous sicilan pizza
and people watched from the other side of the glass.
normally, i see 'em, but like at the zoo, y'know?
i'm IN the studio while they ooze around outside.
and after that?
dudes, i went swimming!
in a pool and everything.
and then i saw people literally just hanging out at night being social at a hotel
honestly i had no idea that was even a thing...
it's almost like i forgot that there's always stuff happening in this vacation destination
all the damned time,
and i've been absent because i assumed it was always just drinking at bars because
i have a house i'd rather be at,
and so i  just stay home and go to bed, usually.
it was different,
it was good,
it felt like i was part of a thing,
and that made the day a lot better;
never quiet, never soft.....


holy sh!t!
chantal and ian have been married for EIGHT years. a row, dudes.
and on their actual anniversary,
they brought their bouncing baby boy to AMPERSAND TATTOO,
and we all spanned time together like a batch of big action busy business
moms and dads.
they've got a six week old handsome homeboy baby of their own,
and breezy and everybody, including lilli, were also at the spot,
so all the bodies got to do a little meet and greet and see all the little bitties.
here's the thing-
their son is ALBEE.
so there were two of us in the house.
was i freaking out about the good lookin lovely babies?
was i freaking out about my friends and their firstborn and his expert name?
did i take a picture with each of them?
check the teleport:

that's what's up.
everybody is psyched.
i really really like these guys.
in fact, i always have from the start.
i consider myself damned lucky to know 'em.
but, wait.
how about this one:

so much beard, so much manliness, so much big round unimpressed baby in my arms.
she's got a personal style for miles, man,
when the anniversary mom and dad headed home,
we went swimming, and afterwards...
lilli continued her tradition of looking totally indifferent.

i'm into it.
i guess that's just how we do things in the woodsly goodness.
we take it easy, sorta.
i don't, at all.
but WE do as a collective.
majority rules and rules is rules.
i had a wild day.
i had a good day.
i saw a lot of people i really like,
i spanned time,
and occupied space with a group of folks who all matter immeasurably.
today is sure to be looooooooong,
and hopefully, there can be a winning tradition of professional appreciation
and active participation established that will endure for years to come.
i have a LOT of feelings, and i'm not even hungry,
so who knows what'll happen if i don't bury them down deep under a pancake or somethin';
never quiet, never soft.....

Tuesday, August 13


tofu scramble?
homeboy fries?
sourdough toast?
am i havin' that big breakfast stuff or am i having a bad time?
i'm having both!!
check it out:

BREAKFAST is sometimes what i want.
i normally just have a smoothie and a cup of black tea.
but every so often i need to eat all my feelings before i start my day.
i had half an avocado, too.
vegan butter and raspberry jam,
those tomatoes are juicy as heck and they really tie the meal together.
the roasty toasty red skin-on potatoes are expert and perfect.
i mean, c'mon, neighbors-
do you even like potatoes?
they're dope.
turmeric, smoked paprika, paprika, cayenne, black pepper, pink salt,
and a drip or two of olive oil...
in a four hundred degree oven on parchment on a baking tray.
i'm sayin'- don't you even really get rad in the morning?
potatoes are what's good during a DÜDI BOI SUMMER!
that scrambo, tho.
half a block of exxxtra-firm tofu,
plus two tablespoons of minced red onion,
and a big shake of Garlic Powder and Onion Powder,
a lil smoked paprika, a little turmeric, a blast of nootch,
pink salt, black pepper, and baby spinach.
guys, scrambled tofu is molto excellent, and it's probably even kinda good for you, too.
i love it.
i like being very full before work.
two slices of toast?
that's right.
homemade sourdough is amazing.
with buttery goodness and jammie jammin' and that crust!!!!
good bread makes better people,
and toast is like upgraded bread.
that's fresh.
it's just eating, but early.
my whole life is just getting heavier and heavier,
and instead of getting stronger, i'm only being more tired.
is that how it's supposed to be?
because that's how it is;
never quiet, never soft.....

Monday, August 12


a fat rectangle of white pizza?
i mean,
why not, right?
after tattooing like a machine made out of tiredness
and drawn-on black-and-grayish lines and blobs of blurred needlepoint plotpoints,
what can i even accomplish besides pizza and sleep.
is that depression?
nah man, i think it's just late summer wear and tear.
but, regardless of what it is that crushes my culinary creativity,
i've got so little imagination left after a weeklong yatty boi tatshack zap session
that i can make pizza
or i can make myself go to bed without dinner,
but i can't make much else of myself and/or for myself.
at least my oven works, neighbors.
check it:

smoky chick peas,
red onions,
daiya mozzarella,
olive oil,
fried garlic,
and some small-leaf rogue thai basil.
that's expert, especially for being non-conventional.
the dough was really somethin' new.
preheat your oven to just 400 easy fahrenheit degrees.
in your stand up mixer, with the hook attached, knead up:
2 cups king arthur flour;
2/3 cup warm water with 2 pkgs regular-action yeast, and 1 tsp agave;
2 tsp sea salt;
3 T vegan butter;
1 T fire-roasted tomato sprankles;
1 T dried shallots;
1/2 tsp coarse cracked black pepper.
knead it up for 11 minutes-
oil it a bit, and let it rise, before stretching into a 9" x 11" vegan buttered pan,
where it can rise with all the stuff right on top.
that's so easy, it's lazy, almost.
how long'd i bake it for?
probably half an hour....and that was nice-nice too.
waiting for food sucks.
but waiting for pizza you made from scratch?
that's not so bad, tho.
because there's pizza at the end of the tunnel.
i used coconut oil on a whole 15 oz can of drained chick peas-
with a heavy shake of GPOP,
and real paprika, smoked paprika, oregano, basil, and black pepper...
otherwise, all the stuff was just raw stuff.
and it was also all delicious.
garden fresh rosemary, and thai basil??
man, that was pretty tight.
more tattoos all day today and tomorrow?
collecting wood in the woodsly goodness while i walk?
wondering wtf is wrong with me that i STILL don't have new stickers??
i'm just old and tired.
is that cool?
maybe... i hope so;
never quiet, never soft.....

Sunday, August 11


i've written an erased five versions of an explanation already.
so, here's the sixth-
i am worn out.
and i'm so furious about it.
i am tired, sad, spent, used up and beat down, 
and my creativity is pretty low.
i work too much and enjoy it way too little.
but i feel like i'll have plenty of time to be creative and not have as much work,
which means i won't have to work as much in just a few weeks-
the end of summer shoulder season, bruh.
it comes quick, and it sucks hard.
umm, that's what she said?
as long as i can endure another three weeks of hard styles and sour feelings 
and phone pics of somebody else's good ideas, i'll have time for something else.
and y'know what really eats sh!t about being all kinds of exhausted?
i'm really just eatin' pizza, neighbors.
most good days are just a baby bit better with pizza,
and the bad days?
well, on the bad ones i NEED those jauns as a form of antidepressant dopeness.
that's the truth.
if it wasn't for pizza, no matter how repetitive it may be for everyone else to see,
i'd be in even bigger even more dire straits.
so, here's the big action:
i was thinking of my little buddy cohen
and the way he says 'veggie pizza'.
it's english, but he has a very regionally ambiguous accent when he says it.
i imagine this is what he's talking about.
the dough is from scratch,
the tempeh bacon is homemade,
the toppings are copious,
and those fire-roasted tomato sprankles are expert on the edges.
daiya mozzarella, minced over crushed tomatoes.
homemade cashew chee' over that.
caramelized onions.
braised broccoli.
green pepper.
rainbow sweet baby bell pepper.
chunky fried garlic spranks.
pan seared baby bella mushrooms.
and that spicy tempeh bacon, too.
the dough was better than usual:
dough-hookin' on your stand-upright mixer will be essential,
but combine:
1 cup king arthur bread flour;
1/4 tsp wheat gluten;
1 cup king arthur flour;
1/2 tsp sugar;
2 tsp sea salt;
1 pkg fast-rise yeast;
2 T olive oil;
3 T unsweetened plain non-dairy yogurt;
2/3 cup warm water.
beat it up until it forms a shiny ball, it may take a minute, but be patient.
oil it and let it rise while the oven heats up to 480℉, convection-style.
i always stretch my dough on a seasoned steel pan, with exxxtra-oil.
this time, i also freaked it off with those tomato bits.
that was nice.
and what about that tempeh bacon?
you want it.
i know it's veggie pizza, but a little exxxtra flavorfulness is always invited.
that's 11 thin slices of tempeh (think <1 div="">
in a pan with 1/2 cup water;
2 T tamari;
1/4 tsp ea. GPOP;
2 shakes liquid smoke;
1/2 tsp smoked hot paprika;
1 T agave;
1 tsp olive oil-
simmer that until all the liquid absorbs/evaporates.
that's when you flip 'em once, then give 'em another 'nother minute,
and you're freakin' done, dude.
the recipe for the cashew mozz' is here.
you're welcome.
there's not much else to say, man.
there's still so much august left to get through.
and i'm gonna.
there's nothin' for it, it can't be helped, it's just What Is.
true life tattman livin' is not to be taken lightly;
never quiet, never soft.....