Friday, September 30

goodbye goodbye goodbye

september is done, dudes.
yeah.
another 'nother page, filled out,
and lost to time and history,
becoming another 'nother ghost in this haunted houseful of spirit and memory.
damn.
that's somethin', huh?
mmhmmm.
it was a hell of a month, for sure.
i found myself in places and spaces and spanning time in new ways,
and under new circumstances,
and before long, found myself right back in the place i began the month.
jeez.
the good news is that i'm very adept at adapting to restarts.
y'know?
like,
giving ground to gain traction.
that's the diplomatic way of saying i'm going backwards.
which is true enough, and that's fair enough for me.
so,
when we're back on familiar trails,
and the terrain is already terraformed for warrior poetry,
what do we do?
we make something delicious.
obvi.
that's right.
roll up your sleeves and start stirring it's time to get expert in the kitchen
and let this month slink into eternity straight through the oven door.
you know it.
it all begins and ends the same way:
with treats.
yessir.
i doo-do that cakey nutty bakery sh!t,
and i'm here to tell you all about it.
check the teleport:

YES.
black strap molasses/black walnut/cinnamon-cider-simmered apple chunk cake??!!?!!
yep.
what'd i do to create such sexxxy stuff?
i did the best i could conceive of,
and executed it without any real regard for the consequences.
that's my secret ingredient, neighbors-
acceptance of whatever outcome happens to happen.
that said,
i also did this:
4 large apples, pared, cored, and cut into short slices,
with a cup of cider, a half a cup of powdered sugar, a lot of cinnamon,
a splash of vanilla, a drip of maple extract, a cup and a half of black walnuts,
and a pat of butts.
-
while that simmered, softened, and then cooled,
i combined a stick of butterish
1/2 tsp salt
3 T creamchee'
>1 cup of brown sugar
2 T powdered sugar
2 tsp vanilla
and 1/2 cup molasses,
stirred the holy heck out of that,
and added in 2.5 cups flour
1.5 tsp each kapowder and soda
cinnamon
and 1/3 cup tapioca
...
then i added the apple blops, stirred it all together into a yummy gummy glob,
and spread that into a greased and floured 9" springform,
and baked it at around 365F for at least 40 minutes.
i was freestyle-forming this F*er, and i basically made carrot cake,
without dumb carrots,
and it is GOOD, guys.
the frosting?
2/3 stick of butts,
2 cups kapowdered sugs
2.5 T creamchee
cinnamon
a pinch of salt
a splash of cider
a dash of reduced maple essence
and a whiskin' that'll get it fixed up right.
yup.
too much is the right amount.
anything else is lame.
*
september is done.
and that's fine.
october is for pumpkins,
and for hallowe'en costumes,
and for the fryeburg fair.
yeah!!
there will be falafels aplenty to befoul my bellyhole,
for eight days, (a beatles week, y'see) i'll be living and loving the chick peas and the truth.
it's bound to be good.
it always is.
i'm not sad september is over,
but i do wish i had more time.
maybe whatever comes next is the new hottness?
mayyyybe.
more likely there will only be more of all of this.
i s'pose that will have to do;
never quiet, never soft.....

m-f chunkin'.

i keep my cookie hand pretty strong in these hills, kids.
no foolin'.
a good cookie can turn a bad day around in two bites.
and when you know there's hard styles headed your way?
yeah, man-
those cookies had better be baking already,
no, really;
otherwise you're just setting yourself up for a readily preventable failure.
i'm no sucka, neighbors.
i know when the times are gettin' tough,
and the prospects for immediate relief are lookin' rough,
and a positive mental attitude won't be enough-
and that's exactly why i'm up here baking my biscuits off of my body, bro.
mmmmmmhmmmm.
if i get one shot at improving my day,
y'all should better you bottom dollars that i'm 'bout to b!tchslap a batch of that
old time homemade hottness.
i doo-doo that cookie sh!t,
and it hasn't led me astray yet.
check the dark-brown-type teleport:

ooooooooh!!
ahhhhhhhh!!
ohhhhhhhh!!
mmmmmm!!
you want something like this in YOUR face?
easily done.
this is it:
-
1 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp vanilla
^creamed,
plus 6oz (3/4 cup) unsweetened applesauce
whisked until fluffyish, real nicey-nicely.
1/2 cup cocoa
1 1/4 cups rolled oats (the fat ones)
1 1/2 cup a.p. flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
8 oz. bittersweet chocolate chunks
-
dudes,
that's all there is.
375F degree, 13 minutes, and done.
it's almost effed, up how hard it would to eff these up.
i like that.
they're chunky.
like, really chunky.
and hearty as heck. big bits of everything make for burly barbarian blocks of brown.
that's no joke.
a good cookie is a triumph,
and i feel like somebody should be erecting an arch in my honor for these F*ers.
really.
*
i span my days in the throes of dog travel,
tattoo trials,
and lonely dinners,
followed by canine car ridin' togetherness with my one inescapable homeboy.
yup.
crabtree and i have a deal.
he comes cruisin' around these mountains with me,
and i, in turn, play some sort of A*-hole wargames with him,
for an hour or so, afterwards.
it's tiring, and it's tiresome, and it's probably hard on my tires, too-
but,
we span time together, he and i, as best we can.
we're a couple of grossies, being gross, but not alone, and not idly, either.
we're actively participating in the time and space we're allotted,
making moves within the confines of an hour's ride in any direction.
we're exploring, and we're warring, and we're not ignoring any of it-
stay ugly, stay dope.
....that's the rules.
and we do our very damned best to adhere to that.
it's all really happening, friends.
that's sort of the whole point;
never quiet, never soft.....

Thursday, September 29

DEEP D REDUX

hey bruhbruh,
you know what's even F*ing better than deep dish pizza?
TWO deep dish pizzas.
mmmhmmmmm.
i did it, again.
i had the dough, i had the drive, and god only knows how,
but i have the shark-gluttonous tendency to terrorize waaaaay too much food.
rules IS rules after all.
so,
for the second day in a row,
i fired up the oven, and force-fed my face a tall order of new hottness.
i'm glad i did it, too.
that's real.
i didn't have the same pizza again.
i mean,
i'm not a total A*-hole, neighbors.
c'mon.
this time around, i opted for the burly, stick-to-your-riblets heaviness,
and it paid off hugely in dividends of robustness for my whole dang body.
check the deepest-dopeness-type teleport:

OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOF!
guys,
the crust was even flippin' better with another 'nother long day of cold proofing.
that's the stuff!!!
cakier, flakier, fluffier, and way more expert.
nice.
i used the custom underchee' on the bottom,
followed by caramelized onions-
two of 'em , because the ones i had were so small.
on the ones, if you can't hang out with onions,
i'll never shed a tear over you.
that's a new decree.
anyway,
then there's a whole mess of daiya mozzarella,
and thick slices of oven-roasted oil & black-peppery potato,
and broth-braised broccoli florets.
yup.
i keep a little spent seitan broth on hand for just such occasions.
and then MORE chee',
and crushed tomatoes, and a dusty blast of nootch boostin' nutrients,
and vegan sausages,
homemade,
with upgraded spicy ho'sauce and smoke and cayenne and black pepper-
because too much is the right amount.
and that's the truth, forever.
......and just to turn it up,
i hit it with three full cloves'-worth of fried garlic sprankles.
hey man,
there's pizza time, and then there's pizza time.
i prefer the monumental moments over the cheap slices of sh!t.
believe it.
also, a day off yielded a MUCH sexxxier shot of this 'za.
timing is everything, and daylight isn't gonna wait for me.
*
pizza is good for you.
pizza is GREAT for me.
making food, and eating more of it than i think i can fit,
is basically what i DO.
there's other stuff, for sure,
and all of it keeps spilling out from a font of spirit and memory
that makes my whole head hurt as it erupts in great spouting gouts of
words, and pictures, and art, and action.
jeez.
the pizza almost seems like small potatoes, comparatively.
and not for nothin', but the potato element in that deep dish?
level eleven omega-hott boomfire for my face.
i need a change.
i need a break.
the thing of it is-
there's still so much work left to be done,
that my needs will have to wait for a while.
let's hope that the anti-venom that is good food can counteract the
toxic levels of repetitive stress that threaten to echo forever from
the first to the last of each and every day.
damn.
that's not exactly uplifting, is it?
sorry, dudes,
but true stories are what i've got.
....well,
and pizza.
no matter the viciousness of a low-viscosity cycle,
a tar pit of forward motion,
or a sinkhole of quicksandy hourglass curves,
there's always room for another little bit of that deep dish.
you find your bright spots where you can, man;
never quiet, never soft.....

better to stay underground.

ugh,
guys,
i was walking around,
with crabtree, of course,
through the high hills of my homely neighborhood,
and thinking about getting into some new and exciting sh!t.
huh?
no.
nothing dangerous,
mainly just thoughts about leaving this remote mountain hole,
and maybe heading out into the wider waking world for a bit.
however,
almost immediately upon entertaining ideas about the unfolding folio of folk life
outside the weird walls of my Folk Life & Liberty Fortress,
i stumbled on THIS little A*-hole:

ugh!!
i know, right?
that's one hell of a hard-style harbinger.
somehow,
crabby didn't sniff it out first,
despite it's inside-outside butthole.
....and as i looked at it- vole? shrew?
i knew only one thing for certain.
he should've stayed underground.
i'm curious, kids-
do you think it's an omen for my bright ideas?
or just random circumstance overlapping along the lines of my
spiderwebbed interconnective sensitivity to grey-mattered information?
y'know?
no?
oh.
well,
the minute this little sad and unfortunate jerk left his unhappy hovel,
he ended up pretty damned well worse off than if he'd stayed in the cave.
i couldn't help but be a bit bummed by the timing of my discovery.
that's all i'm saying.
nobody likes to be reminded of the consequences of big decisions.
and definitely not before the right action has even been decided upon.
yuck.
i don't want to die with an exploded butthole,
neither literally nor metaphorically.
for serious.
that means, for today at least, i'm deep into my routine,
making bread,
and walking the terrible terrier,
and languishing in the movie-checkin' heck i call work these days.
it's ALL really happening,
like it or not, and until my A*-hole is stronnger,
or my attachment to it is less corporeal,
i guess this is what it is going to be like:
work and more work, and in between,
something very similar to living,
only, underground,
albeit well above sea level.;
never quiet, never soft.....

Wednesday, September 28

DEPTH charge.

DEEEEEEEP DISSSSSSSSSSSSSSSHHHHHHH!!!!!
duders,
that cakey buttery semolina-superpower is in F*ing full effect over here.
yuuuuuuuuuuuuup!!
pee eye zee zee ayyy powerhousin' is what i had poppin' for my palate and my plate
and let me just tell you the truth, homies:
I LOVE PIZZA!
holy sh!t.
the dough was tight.
i think letting it proof overnight,
and then allllll day allowed the utmost in flavors to develop.
it doesn't hurt that i get frisky with the yeast, and add a little too much.
you know i do.
because too much is the right amount,
and that's the only level of active participation that i'm prepared to engage in.
real talk.
here's how this dough went down:
1 1/2 cups a.p. flour
2 tsp gluten
1.5 tsp salt
4 T melted butter
1 1/2 cup semolina flour
1 T active yeast
1 1/4 cup warm water,
with a tsp of sugar, a tsp of flaxmeal, and a tsp of breadmachine yeast.
mmhmmm.
that's it.
and it made my whole face so psyched!!
dudes,
look at what it helped to make happen:

kaPOW!!!!!
the deep deep dark dopeness bakes at 480F,
until it's golden across the crust.
huh?
yeah,
i still use a springform, buttered, to give it the firm form and ease of access.
i want my hot pizza right NOW, so i make moves to ensure that's a certainty.
plan your work, broski.
that's smart.
i got the cashew garlic underchee' laid down,
and caramelized onions on top of it, with a heavy hand of daiya mozzarella over that.
mmmm.
shredded baby spinach stacked itself above, with MORE daiya to hold it together.
from there, it just gets expert.
quartered glazed brussels sprouts,
and thickly-sliced dry-roasted mushrooms  (no slime for me, kid)
with crushed tomatoes,
and overchee',
plus,
house-made proprietary pepperoni slices,
and fried garlic and parsley sprankles.
i want my depth to be fully charged and loaded up with new hottness.
i think this had that going for it.
how'd it taste?
UNBELIEVABLY delicious.
in fact,
like a cartoon,
i cut a wedge out, and ate the entire remaining pac-man shape by myself.
uh-huh.
i take indulgent self-destructive comprehensive indigestion to eleven.
that's the only way to serve yourself a harmful helping of hot pizza.
*
i will forever hate the yellow sheen of unnatural light.
like, SO much.
i want a camera rig and a lighting system over here in the lab,
because after blasting away at the boundaries of big action and burly nourishment,
a yellowy jaundiced photograph just bums me the F* out.
not enough to NOT eat a whole pizza,
but jus enough to make the reason i'm eating it
more about my feelings of esoteric dissatisfaction
than my feelings of abiding gluttonous hunger.
it's all really happening,
and there's pictures to prove it-
only,
the pictures prove that it's getting so much darker so much earlier that
the documentation is suffering for the fading hours of sunshine.
this is it.
and that's the way it is.
lucky for me,
it's a grey cloudy day, and the sun may not shine at ALL today.
wait.
that's not lucky at all.
awwwwwwwwwwww.
hard styles, long nights, short lights, and big pizzas.
real life unfolds the way it wants to;
never quiet, never soft.....

big breakfast, actual.

dudes,
time is of the essence!
yesterday,
i had big breakfast plans,
big haircut plans,
and big tattoo day plans.
all in a row,
with a healthy dose of rainy day dog walking thrown in;
y'know,
just to add a degree of doo-doo buttery difficulty into the mix.
wet and lazy puppy dragging through the drippin' droplets of a dour day
is just about no fun.
not one bit.
and since i was soaked, surly, and in a hurry to get home,
crabtree and i had ourselves a real disagreement about how to proceed with our day.
so,
in the rain, in a hurry, with a wet dog who didn't want to be there any more than i did,
save the fact that i knew for certain that he'd be a right bastardhole
if he didn't get some serious exercise in before a long day in lock-up,
we argued and wrestled and basically had a little impromptu title fight
for dominance of the domains around the Folk Life & Liberty Fortress.....
yeah.
but, there's good news, guys-
i won by a landslide!
and with the pecking order reestablished,
our wet trek through the trees proceeded unhindered-
i will admit,
i was powered by some severely expert panniecakes,
so i had a clear advantage from the jump.
mmhmmm.
when i'm getting activated, i leave no indulgence uexplored.
that's real.
i'm just sayin',
that big breakfast jaun is no joke around here,
and i genuinely think that living alone is no reason not to terrorize a stack
of fluffed-out flapcakes for you face.
if it's big b time,
it's BOG B time.
y'feel me?
so,
i'll eat enough for two,
and the ache in my belly will remind me that full and empty both hurt just as much.
awwwww.
but, for real, though, bro. check the teleport:

WORD!!
cinnamon cider panniecakes??
with butter-fried cinnamon sugar apples?
and real maple syrup???
c'mon.
i mean, but, like, for real, though- C'MON!
a little ground coconut, and fresh milled oat flour,
a lot of melted butterish, vanilla,(mandatory),
a dash of salt, a blop of coconut yogurt, some a.p. flour,
kapowder and soda and cinnamon and sugar and cider,
all mixed up and rested, and what have you got?
you've got some woodsly goodness for your griddle.
...that's no joke.
i spritzed 'em with exxxtra cinnamon too,
before i topped the whole mess off with those apple wedges.
too much is the right amount,
and that's the only way i've ever known when it comes to making panniecakes.
what?
no.
i didn't measure anything.
but,
i figure it's probably about a cup fo regular flour,
a half a cup of coconut and oats together,
half a tsp salt, 1 tsp each of the leavens,
a quarter cup of yogurt, a tsp or two of vanilla
a cup of cider and a dousin' of cinnamon,
three or four tablespoons of melted butts,
nice.
* ginger-coriander tofu scramble?
mmhmmm.
it's just like regular scrambies, but with the addition of a little fresh ginger,
and a teaspoon of toasted ground coriander seed.
also, it's flippin' delicious.
* spicy ho'sauced crispy skin-on homeboyfries??
with molto red onion and lots of buttery sizzle?
yeah,
i always hit 'em with some smoky paprika and black pepper, too,
and a few parsley sprankles,
because i am NOT an A-hole.
that's a thing.
* tempeh bacon?
yeah.
a few straightforward slices of that sh!t.
yum, i guess.
i think i do it just because three sides looks so much sexxxier.
i could live without it, and not miss it at all.
anyway,
if it's there, i'll gladly devour it.
rules is rules.
***********
big breakfasts are good sometimes.
that leaden weight, slowly digesting over hours,
like the mighty sarlacc,
while the nutrients seep into my cells an' that.
i'm nourished,
and i'm comforted,
and i'm full.
all of those things are positive.
everything else?
well,
everything else is just unfolding at it's own mysterious pace,
on it'sown mysterious agenda,
and on the periphery,
there's me, and you, and pancakes,
and really real day-to-day hustlin' and bustlin'.
there's a lot i have no idea about,
and a little that i'm intimately aware of.
breakfast is the latter, despite being the first and most important,
or so i've heard it told;
never quiet, never soft.....

Monday, September 26

never eschew the cashew....

cookies.
cooooooookies.
COOKIES.
i love 'em,
and i eat 'em,
and i make 'em a LOT.
mmmmmmmm.
dudes,
i had some cashews hanging out-
so,
you KNOW i had to use 'em.
well, i mean, c'mon-
cashews are good.
like, really good.
i roasted them first,
just to activate the proper flavor explosions when the cookie scene got poppin'.....
and a whole big ol' batch of roasted cashew-laced treats isn't ever gonna let me down.
and they didn't disappoint me.
not one tiny little bit.
check the teleport:


kaboom.
huh?
i used the BIG sexy chocolate chunks, too.
neighbors,
these jauns are expert.
y'know what i did?
...i did the best i knew how.
and this is what that included:
1 cup of roasted whole cashews, chopped afterwards.
12 oz of dark chocolate chunks
10T butts
3 T creamchee'
1 cup light brown sugar
1 cup spelt flour
1 1/2 cups a.p. flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp each baking kapowder and soda
4 oz coconut yogurt
1/2 cup ground coconut
2 tsp vanilla
-
butts, chee' sugar, salt, vanilla, yogurt- in that order.
then,
flours, leavens, nuts and chunks.
it's easy.
i rolled 'em, and squished 'em, and baked 'em at 375 for 13 apiece,
and let the whole mess cool off enough to drizzle that chocolate sauce all over the place.
guys,
i made them as a  goodbye to my friends.
they're gone,
and i'm still here,
which is essentially the same story it's always been,
over and over, for as long as i've lived here.
the thing is,
kindness is not a wasted action,
because you get the goods even as you give it away.
it's synergy.
and that's good for you...
*
it's cold.
it's dark.
it's the end of september.
all of it is really unfurling like blackened pirate's sails,
taking away the bright spots and the treasures,
to be replaced by a week of falafel all too soon.
uh-huh.
it's almost THAT time of year again.
i hope you're braced for the fury.
i know my hatches are battened;
never quiet, never soft..... 

Sunday, September 25

tarting.

strawberries and chocolate!
strawberries.
...AND chocolate.
dudes,
strawberries and chocolate!!!
c'mon.
i'm 100% about that life, y'feel me?
how could i not be?
i mean,
on the ones-
that's that sexxxy sh!t.
you know it;
i know it;
we all know it-
and seriously,
since it's such a well-known level eleven hottness combination:
if you happen to be one of the unfortunate tasteless turds who can't hang tough
with that sort of superfancy stuff?
oh MAN,
then, you are clearly an A*-hole, and we're done here.
however,
if you're down to get down with the get down,
well, then,
check the teleport:
FUEGO PICANTE CALIENTE EXPLOSIVO!!!!
mmmmmmmm.
so simple.
i'm almost embarrassed that they're so good.
pastry rounds, from my patented pastry proportions.
strawberry jam blops spread down thin first thing,
a handful of chocolate chunks.
the chunks are key, here-
chips could work, but they'd be less lusciously indulgently dope.
y'need that semisweet shrapnel for activating the expertism, for sure.
fresh sliced strawberries, with vanilla-infused sugar sprankled on top,
to get the juices flowing.
i pinched all the edges, but baking that superbuttery dough unfolded every effort.
i ended up with crusty, crispy plates under all my toppings.
y'know what?
they're still rad, and they taste exactly the same, so i can live with that.
i baked 'em at 410F for thirty.
on parchment.
...and when they were coolish enough to mess with?
mmhmm.
i messed with 'em.
kapowdered sugar dustin',
and ganache drizzle-stripin' hottness!!
what do we call that?
oh, right: that's expert.
that's the way to really keep traditions alive.
traditions?
yeah, man.
too much is the right amount.
that's a thing.
-
i make the nice, guys.
i think it's important to do pretty things,
especially if you're anything like me.
what?
well,
you gotta balance it out.
i think that's a good idea.
i don't know how to display my best intentions in words.
the temptation, the urge, the instinctual drive to deliver clever quips
supersedes all of my best ideas.
the brutal barbarian battle-beastly bard in me wants to be noticed.
the thing of it is,
so does the professional appreciator of beauty and sweetness.
that's where the cakes come into play.
flip sides of a coin, kids.
without the bitter, the sweet's just not as sweet.
....that sort of sh!t.
baking is quiet, save the clang of pots and pans.
talking can be nice,
and the right words do fall into place like well-balanced ingredients
when i set myself to the task of competent communication-
i bake things.
i break things.
and all of it is really happening, right this second;
never quiet, never soft.....

dawn's early light.

the brightest sky. clear and crisp and vast,
with stars like candles.
and the moon, a floodlight,
bathing the whole of the woodsly goodness in azure and cobalt-
....and me,
watching crabtree take a thunderous and unholy sh!t at 5 a..m.
ugh.
it's called ruining it.
and that's the way we doo-doo our daily rituals.
neighbors,
i rep a very hard style,
and it includes early mornings,
late nights,
strong language,
and enthusiastic violence of action,
i enact, inflict, and ultimately endure explosions and outbursts
of creative self-destruction,
and deconstructive self- exploration-
rolling around next to,
and punctu(punctured)ated amongst the sharp sharp teeth of,
this F*ing dog.
in between bouts of barbarian battle and beastly break-beat bard business,
i bake things.
and when i do,
i make sure to snap a shot,
so i have something to show you guys.
mmhmmmm.
i made cookies.
maple sugar cookies.
double-buttery maple sugary crispy crawnchy snappy shapes of leaves and stars.
wanna see?
ok.
teleport:

niiiiiiiiice.
the cookies were so straightforward,
i had to sexxx up the shot, with autumnal hottness and accoutrements.
i'm not even gonna tell you how to make these cookies.
seriously.
it's butter, sugar, flour, vanilla, baking powpow and soda, salt, and maple syrup.
simple.
i used a lot of butts.
that's all the help you get.
***********
i've got oatmeal bread in the oven,
and i've got strawberry chocolate crisps that just came out of it.
these days are the type that blur by too fast.
you always think you've got just a bit more time,
but,
you don't.
i've got not enough  groceries in my ever-emptier fridge;
i've got too many unfulfilled chores piling up at work-
simple little somethings-
like cutting dropcloths, and organizing disposables-
that become a messy mountain looming in my line of sight
as i run a little late each and every day
yeah.
it's not the schedule, it's the supply chain.
i'm forever trying to make the experience memorable,
and enjoyable, and relatable to the clients who are smart enough,
lucky enough,
dumb enough,
or just plain' ol' indifferent enough to end up in my chair for the big show.
hahahaha.
that requires the exxxtra-effort you'd expect from someone
who believes in instigating loud, fresh, hardness for your face.
i don't want mundane experiences.
i don't want boring stories.
i want to have more to do than i could possibly fit,
and still get more finished than you'd ever expect.
i promise to leave exhausted.
that's how i know i'm doing my best.
too much is the right amount,
and everything else is wasted time and energy.
if you aren't ready to take it to eleven,
you need to take that weak sauce elsewhere.
tell your story walkin', diaperbabies,
there's too much work to do to sit around.
*
on top of all of that,
as i double-bucket bail away on the rising water inside the sinking ship
i'm sailing off into the sunset of my mutha'-lickin' life,
and as the other boaters seem to be pogo-sticking augur-bitted bottom-bursting holes
into the hull of my whole income-generating situation.
or,
when do i plug my nose, and hope i float as the floor beneath me drops away?
right.
on top of THAT,
today is the day, again.
yup.
another last day,
another 'nother see-you-later-maybe moment.
what can i say?
goodbye, probably.
i'm grateful for the time i'm given,
to span across expanses,
to carry across chasms,
to burn behind me these bridges that meet in the middle.
mmhmm.
that way,
there's no turning back, or looking behind us.
the way forward is paved with goodbyes,
and while that's the pricetag for every new hello,
it seems like no level of inflation can devalue that kind of currency.
so,
i guess that's that.
it's all really happening,
and i'm sure there's a point to all of it;
never quiet, never soft.....

Friday, September 23

FALLING!

get up, get to work, get out, and get after it, then go to work;
get out of work, get home, and get back to work.
yup.
i make that move every single day.
why?
because rules is rules.
and that's the way a worthy warrior poet does his thing.
yesterday,
my dude nate is one the east coast, staying down in southern maine,
coming by way of the california side of lake tahoe.
but,
he was all up in this woodsly goodness especially to see me!
expert recognize expert, i suspect.
so,
the least i could do, as a gracious adherent of viking values
and a disciple of the virtues of gratitude and generosity,
was provide something good to eat for his face.
uh-huh.
i did just that, too.
bouncing out of the job-spot,
and jaunting over to the Folk Life & Liberty Fortress,
so we could experience some fall fiesta flavors, in F*ing full-effect.
it's nice to have an audience to witness the complete lack of direction,
and the overabundance of drive,
that make the mealtimes come together through sheer explosive force of will.
i'm like that, and i like when someone can bear witness to the process.
what did i make?
i made some heavy-handed heavyweight starch explosions, son!!
check the equinox-dinner-type teleport:

WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOORD.
i confess, i prepared the tart ahead of time,
but i baked it when i got back to the warm embrace of my kitchen.
my patented pastry crust was perfect,
the blue potatoes were soft, the leeks were all melty,
the carrots were smoky in their caramelization.
thee beets?
well,
twice baked beets can't be beat for tasting sweet and a lot less like dirtbombs.
nice.
the brussels were a bit hard,
but i sort of suspected that tiny whole brussies might be resistant to the oven.
didn't matter,
my homemade gravy, and the molto buttery blops and gouts of crust and cream
more than made up for any overly firm bites.
ha!
i had the oven raging at 410F,
which is damned hot,
but it broiled the bejeezus out of those button mushrooms,
and the woodiest, meatiest, thickest flavors rose to the surface.
guys,
salt and olive oil and hot were the only ingredients.
that's dope.
i laid down a bed of leafy greens, strong-to-the-finish-style,
so i could have some correct color-matching to set off those butter-seared seitan steaks.
friends,
i used cornstach, and GPOP, and  ground mustard,
aleppo pepper, black pepper, smoked paprika, and nootch,
and floured them up for a ferocious crust, sealing in all that soft, tender sexxxiness.
i don't think nate was ready for that much hottness,
but he acquitted himself nicely, and cleared his plate like a champion.
sweet.
the mushrooms, some parsley spranks, some tomatoes,
and a whole mess of gravy completed the look for that meatless meat.
delicious just isn't a strong enough word.
i steamed that broccolini over a bed of sweet onion,
and i let the onions do what they do as well as a clove or two of chopped garlic.
that's one-pan multitasking, and that's a new thing for me.
the onions sat out on the side,
and the brox got gravied, and garnished with redder and better tomatoes,
straightforward, but molto expert.
where'd the onions go?
next to the mashed butternut squash, of course!!!
c'mon.
what are you? an A*-hole?
OBvi, the squash needed some sweet jauns to accentuate the hottness.
half a squash, half an onion, two cloves of garlic, and some salt,
boiled up until everything was super soft,
and mashed with butter, GPOP, and brown sugar.
damn!!
everything went to eleven,
and i even got to share it with my homeboy.
that's a good day.
***********
today,
it's going to be a bit darker than yesterday.
i s'pose i'll have to endure it.
tonight, it's going to be longer than it was last night.
again,
i'll endure it.
soon enough, however,
it'll be blacker than black,
and the brightest spots won't be nearby enough to light my way.
what's the secret?
i think you just close your eyes in advance.
once you're used to the dark,
you can navigate completely by feel.
ha.
we can discuss my stubbed toes in just a little bit, i should think.
there's a lot of falling going on.
fall out, fall down, fall apart, fall fall fall.
it's all really happening, and it's not easy, but it IS necessary;
never quiet, never soft.....

FALLEN

it's that time, kids.
the decline and fall of the year.
and what do i love best about whenever there's something to celebrate?
yuuuuuuuuuuuup.
seasonally appropriate site-specific TREATS!!!!
you KNOW it, neighbors.
i can't resist a special occasion,
nor can i deny that i've got a high drive for developing celebratory style
when it comes to things i think i probably like.
that's no joke.
that said,
apples aren't exactly my priority. most days.
however, in september,
and on the first day of F*ing fall???
heck yes, kids.
i HAD to bring the big, burly, barbarian battle-bard business to bear,
in a bowl so deep i got lost in it's gravity.
check the autumnal-equinox-rocks-your-socks-type teleport:

kaBOOM!!!
i'm on about a big slice of that ultimate apple jaun.
guys,
i made it up, but i worked it out.
in the end, the combination of delights made my day.
...really.
*
8 gala apples, peeled and cored, and cut into fattie-boombattie chunks,
simmered in real maple syrup, two or three glugs,
and an equal splash of apple cider,
with a handful of sugar,
a spritz of vanilla,
cinnamon, nutmeg, ginge, alspice, and a little baby bit of lemon juice.
all of that, plus a few fat pats of butts, and a pinch of salt,
had the softening underway on medium-low heat almost immediately.
when the juice content got too juicy,
i tempered it with whole rolled oats- one manly fistful,
and i ended up with a perfect pie filling for my trouble.
expert.
-
the outer crust is graham cracker, melted butts, vanilla, and soymilk,
with a little cinnamon to spice it up.
easy. easy. easy.
ten minutes of baking at 350F,
just to set it firmly in place prior to the big baking action
had it all already ready, and waiting,
for a big ol' blop of that fruited-up flavor.
again, that's pretty expert.
-
the topping?
or should i say,
the upper crust?
ha.
oh MAN!
i used about a cup and a quarter of flour,
some pie spices in unspecified quantities,
a dash of salt,
a half a cup of apple cider,
1 tsp ea. baking powpow and soda,
a few tablespoons of sugar,
and another fistful of oats,
to make a pancake-style batter for pouring into all the nooks and sh!t.
nice.
i hit it with brown sugar sprankles,
and MORE oatmeal,
and baked that b!tch for 30ish minutes at 350F, until the top was well-caramelized,
and the apple mush in the middle was steaming.
mmmmmmmmhmmmmmmmm.
totally, completely, autumnally expert.
the BIG deep dish was key, i feel.
i'm serious.
when you're on a mission to mound your mouth with the most magnificence,
you'll likely need a deeper dish to get it done.
i doo-doo that deep d stuffin', duders.
after all,
too much is the right amount.
and that's real.
-
MY slice was a la mode, with an almond milk vanilla scoople,
because i'm not an A*-hole,
and i know what's good.
...speaking of-
i've used up my cool tattoo allotment,
and have moved dow the list into the rent-paying variety of awesome ideas.
and by awesome,
i mean, SOOOOO awesome.
which is to say:
i'll be suffering through a long week of weak sauce,
and letting the ink flow as freely as my tears of disappointment at my appointments.
ha.
awwwwwwww.
a grand don't come for free, guys,
so it's grinding and grinding and grinding from here until the fair.
huh?
oh yes.
i'm working short days that whole week,
just to get my A* out to those zesty, rewarding, lovely, enriching falafels.
hmm?
well,
you are certainly free to find your own bright spots where you may.
mine, however,
are all going to get covered in tahini;
never quiet, never soft.....

Thursday, September 22

goodbye, summer.

well,
it sure was a weird one,
and i say that with complete certainty.
huh?
oh.
i mean, this summer.
it sure was a weird one.
for realsies,
summer '16 really took me for a very toad-like wild ride
down some dirty backroads and alleyways i'd not expected to see again.
and yet, for all my surprise,
here we are, doing the same sh!t, neighbors-
autumn is upon us,
and today is the big day.
the first day.
the kickoff jumpstart beginning.
also,
it's my best friend in the whole entire world's daughter's berfday today.
she's ONE!
that's a big deal.
and i, for one,
in my official position as the weirdest uncle,
am very excited.
that's pretty fresh.
you remember being ONE?
me neither,
but i bet it was pretty  cool.
y'know what else is pretty cool?
tacos.
yup.
i did what i do,
and it was a good idea from the start-
taco time is the best time,
and i sent summer packing with a pile of perfectly prepared foldover flaps.
also,
i dominated the whole dish in a matter of mere minutes.
yup.
lots of prep, but damned short action on the payoff.
sorta like dominoes, y'feel me?
check the last-tacos-of-summer-type teleport:

ADIOS, VERANO!!!!
*
dudes,
that guacamole was tight!
jalapeno, red chili, poblano, orange and yellow bell pepper,
cilantro, red onion, scallion, GPOP, garlic, salt, pepper, lemon, lime,
and delicious, decadent, buttery avocados!!!!!

the coconut lime rice?
with scallion sprankles???
c'mon, man.
that's what's up.
i ate a hundred spoonfuls before i was even finished making anything else.
mmmmmmmmmmmmmm.
*
and what's up with those mutha-'ucking tacos, son!!!!
* oven-roasted fat chips of blue potato,
with red beans, garlic, and leeks,
over torn baby spinach, hooked up with red onion,
scallion, and some weird yellow tomatoes.
SO good.
* seitan asada,
slow marinated with onion, garlic, lime,
cumin, coriander, cilantro, paprika, black pepper, GPOP,
oregano, and ho'sauce,
over shredded purple cabbage, with crushed red tomatoes straight outta the garden,
and cilantro sprankles-
dudes,
BOTH of the kinds of treats i was reppin' got sweet spicy smoky homemade
chipotle mayo drizzles too.
i HAD to.
rules is rules.
limes rule, so i used them heavily.
i like a lot of citrus on my plate.
turns out, i most likely HATE scurvy, too.
seems linearly logical.
***********
it's fall, now.
let's all try not to get too excited.
i know i'm ready for all the new englandy good times that this whole region
waits for all year long.
we're the o.g. sweaters and woodstoves crew up here.
it's all really happening,
the change of season,
the equinox,
the shift in light and dark-
the balance is skewed from here on out,
so it's likely up to us to make things brighter.
i know what i'm doing.
i hope you do too;
never quiet, never soft.....

FUEGO-ing, going, gone!

the last days of summer?
awwwwwww.
what does one do,
when one is worthy,
and a warrior,
and a poet,
and refuses to recycle?
hmmmm.
well,
how about starting a trash fire?
sure.
ha.
c'mon.
i burn cardboard, neighbors.
take it easy:

see?
high and bright.
and warm.
and smoky.
and so nice.
but,
what about a real, sexy, pagoda-stacked 13% moisture oaken log fire?
well,
yeah, man
i do that too.
you can't have too much fire,
unless you're standing in the middle of a lake of it-
in which case you're probably in hell,
and i'm pretty much positive nobody ends up there by being any good.
ha.
check the last day of summertime fuego-furioso-freshness-type teleport:

........orderly.
ANYway,
the last few days have had a few fires for my face.
a blaze of glory, a last hurrah,
a swan song,
the glow of converted energy,
light, heat, smoke, and ash-
mmhmmm.
i like fire.
crabtree, on the other hand?
not so much:

he HATES it.
he won't stay still at all,
and he doesn't give any sh!ts about the woodsly goodness's new england charm.
not one bit.
in fact,
this is more like what really happens as i try to enjoy myself for ten seconds:

a constant bye-bye runaway.
*
he's got his style, and i've got mine-
both of them are hard, and neither of them is compatible.
that's how it works.
...or doesn't.
these small glimpses of comfort, though.
the stolen moments when the fire is roaring,
the night is illuminated,
and the shadows cast stories across the leaves and the lawn.
that's the stuff i live for.
yeah,
i make food that i think is good,
and yeah,
i make art that i hope doesn't suck balls,
but really,
what i can make the best is a fire.
that's real.
steadily, readily, unapologetically burning bridges since back in the day
has given me SO much practice,
and i'd like to think i'm kind of an expert at this point.
ha!
we all have our thing, y'know?
heck,
i guess i've actually got a few things.
and right now,
it's ALL really happening;
never quiet, never soft.....

Tuesday, September 20

sconely.

i made scones.
they were good.
i ate many.
boom.
that's the synopsis.
i'll be elaborating,
but now you know what the power points are.
that having been said-
dudes,
the SCONES!!!
yeah.
scones.
tasty breakfast jauns that deliver the dope dividends directly to my bellyhole.
for real-
i never get tired of those terrific triangles.
nope.
not one bit.
in fact,
i sort of always wish there were maybe one or two MORE.
this batch was fast and dirty,
headed into the hot oven as it heated up for a whole other style of baking.
uh-huh.
i had bread to bake as well,
but the respective temperatures are linear,
and i allowed myself the luxury of taking a slight detour to the scone zone
before i started loafing around.
and i'm SO glad i did, too.
really.
what would a rainy monday morning have been without scones??
basically,
it would've been just that......awwww.
so,
i took my time, of which there is precious little,
and i cut in the fats,
and i folded in the wets,
and i grated the greatest zest of lemon i've ever had had.....
and then i folded,
and turned,
and folded, and turned,
over and over and over and over etc etc and so forth and so on-
what do we get when we get like that?
we get it poppin' in the breakfast nook, nerds.
duh.
don't be dumb.
instead,
maybe you should check the teleport:

WORD!!
i got that new new.
i did.
giant chocolate chunks.
vegan hottness, in broken blocks of brown beauty,
and available right at the regular grocery store.
how could i not?
exactly, man.
what else is going on in there?
this:
-
3 1/2 cups a.p. flour (i went molto regular this time)
1/2 cup tapioca
1.5 sticks vegan butts
4T creamchee'
1 handful sugar
1.5 tsp baking kapowder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
-all that gets creamed together nicey nice,
and then we gotta add:
1/2 cup vegan yogurt
1 cup non-dairy milk
2 T lemon juice
1 small lemon's zest
allllll the choco chips
2 tsp vanilla
1 tsp lemon extract
-
that's when you fold and turn until the dough is firm.
cut that firm F*er in half;
and press each half into a 1" high circle.
the, y'gotta cut each flattened half into 6ths, pie-style,
and sprankle each one with big sugar crystals.
that's the rules,
and the rules are dope when it comes to making scones worth a sh!t.
you really want the hottness?
well, then freeze 'em for at least five minutes,
or for even longer if you'd like-
to let the gluten and the fat take it easy for a little bit,
then give 'em 20 minutes or so in a 400F degree oven.
.....
once these babies were ready,
i drizz'd all over their tops with deep dark chocolate ganache.
mmhmmm.
choco-lemon quickness was what i was after,
and i accomplished what i sought for.
lucky.
*
if you don't like scones,
you ain't about this vegan superfresh life.
hey man,
that's your choice.
i'm just sayin'-
scones may be the deciding vote between whether you're a worthy warrior poet,
or a weak-sauce waterbaby.
you know what side i'm taking.
***********
guys.
i feel the building pressure to make more art.
mmmm.
that's a thing.
even if it means NEVER sleeping.
i think i have to,
and it doesn't do me, or you, or anyone else we know any good
to just poop back and forth instead of getting off the pot
and putting the doo-doo to the paper, and making something worth a sh!t.
y'feel me?
what the heck am i waiting for?
that's what i woke up asking myself.
and the answer is?
i DONT KNOW.
ugh.
maybe today will be different.
maybe not.
what i can say for sure is:
it's all really happening,
and there should be much much much more of it before my eyes close every day.
that's the focus,
and that's no joke;
never quiet, never soft.....

Monday, September 19

tattoos.

dudes,
i do a lot of tattoos.
that's the good and bad thing about being versatile and a capitalist:
there's always work to do,
and it's just so flippin' hard NOT to pursue it.
...and that comes a the expense of free time;
although it should be only ever called spare time,
since each and every precious second is expensive.
i'm spending my time to make money,
and that's categorically the opposite of a wise investment.
nope.
i'm serious.
that's real.
because,
if the way you spend your money
doesn't positively affect the way you spend your time?
well, then you're misspending BOTH.
...and that's not cool, neighbors.
so...
what do we do about that?
i'm not so sure i'm all that far off of the mark when i say that
i've been burning up my reserves and resolve,
in a pre-collapse peak-oil-type blind-spot paradise-
circling in overlapping concentric story arcs
and overactive hard-working holding patterns
fraught with frenetic and frantic fury on the short term stage of What Is,
without holding any hope towards an improved longview
regarding the continued productive purposeful legacy of
spirit and memory for some time now.
confused?
boooooooo.
ok.
here's the much shorter version:
i'm tired of always working, while time decays and degrades all of life's joys,
so when i finally take a second to look around,
all i see are the ill-willed aftereffects of a half-emptied hourglass.
NOW you get it, right?
what will i do about it?
dudes,
that's just the thing-
i'm so F*ing busy, it'll be a long march of minutes before i can catch my breath.
yeah,
i know,
i bake a lot.
at 5 a.m., though,
and with crabtree trying to imbed himself up my A*-hole,
like an attention-sucking suppository,
well before anybody else is up and at 'em in these here parts.
guys,
i'm not even getting all that extravagant at dinnertime.
the absence of light is darkening the doorways that lead to those few small victories.
yikes.
*
so,
i'm sitting in the Folk Life & Liberty Fortress,
baking scones and bread,
while the woodsly goodness bathes the rain.
i do a lot of tattoos.
that's real.
i DON'T do a lot of cool ones.
i've got one good one every day, at least, for the rest of the week.
it comes at a cost, but it also pays for itself.
i need a new exchange rate.
hard currency;
theoretical futures;
gold bouillon;
silver ingots;
sands of time;
heck,
maybe even social currency....
means and values, more and more and more.
too much is the right amount,
but in the inverse of the universe that's collapsing around me.
exchanges.
that's what i'm seeking;
never quiet, never soft.....

Sunday, September 18

roll with the punches.

i stay pretty steady on my grind, guys.
that's the truth.
i'm always working,
and working,
and also working,
but,
in between, i'm also fitting in a little MORE work,
and then maybe making something to eat.
.....it's not that i work HARD,
at least not in terms of physical labor.
far from it.
it's that the performance aspects,
both in tactful, tactical, practical. tactile application of my professional services
and delivery of information/distraction/dissemination of ideas
in a conversational/coconspiratorial fashion,
place undue demands on my constitution.
dudes,
i'm trying to fit in walk-ins between and around appointments...
i'm squeezing every last minute of pre-work puppy walking out of every single morning,
because i've got the big guilt about his incarceration all damned day, six days a week.
i'm racing home late, on the regular, to a dark sky and a demanding dog,
and the energy of a well-rested animal doesn't go all that great
with a dude who hasn't slept well in a dog's age.
and despite all of that.
and specifically to counteract the quick dinnertime noodles and stuff
on which i've been subsisting for many days in a row-
which has me wallowing in a deepening dearth of good photographic opportunities,
i've STILL been using my wide-awakeful woke-A* self-motivated morning times
to continually dominate the morning apple game like a sunovab!tchin' champion.
rules is rules, man.
y'feel me?
being pushed and pulled by time and circumstance is no reason to forgo
some sort of positive effort in the kitchen.
neighbors,
if i can't sexify that food up in style at 6 p.m.?
you'd best believe i'm gonna sexify the sh!t outta 6 A.M..
word up.
check the swirls-of-cinnamon-type teleport:


c'mon!
i mean it,
like,
for real, though- C'MON!
apple-cinnamon rolls?!?!?
yeah, duders.
that's how it's done.
would you like to doo-doo that freaky sh!t your own self?
you would?
good.
then do this-
.
3 cups a.p. flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 T fast-as-F*acting yeast
2 tsp flaxmeal
a dash of cinnamon
1 tsp wheat gluten (definitely optional)
1 cup non-dairy milk, warmed to 100F degrees,
with
1 tsp vanilla,
and 1/4 cup melted vegan butterish in there, too.
mix it,
knead it,
and let it rise for 11 minutes,
all while your oven is preheating to 375F.
uh-huh.
i chopped 2 LARGE apples up, into small but chunky blops,
and stewed them with 4 T brown sugar,
1 tsp vanilla
3 T maple syrup
cinnamon, ginger, and allspice.
until coated and softened just a bit.
let it cool enough that it won't melt all the other other filling you'll be adding in as well.
like,
1/2 cup brown sugar
5 T vegan butts
cinnamon, ginger, allspice, and vanilla,
creamed until super-smooth and soft,
then spread out on the dough.
wait.
what?
well, y'gotta roll it out into a rectangle, obvi,
on a floured surface, with a floured rollin' pin, so you don't eff it up.
first the sugar stuff, then the apple stuff, then a tight roll and tuck,
so that the seam is on the bottom.
it's a good idea at this point to refrigerate it for a bit, if you've got the time,
as the insides are gonna wanna ruin the day with warmth and wetness.
a little solidification will certainly save the day if it's going downhill too quickly.
i cut mine into 1/8ths. why?
because it was bulking like crazy, and getting out of hand.
also,
i baked them in a rectangle pan,
on parchment,
which helped a whole bunch.
they got about 30 minutes of oven love,
and they came out so sexxxy lookin', and smellin',
and all that bubbly apple filling had gotten good and gooey,
caramel-style,
and the overflow got all kinds of sticky on those buns, hun.
mmmmmmmmmmm.
when they cooled,
you KNOW i hit 'em with that cinnamaple icing.
that's the stuff.
man-oh-MANdatory hottness is how i get it poppin' when i pop off in the morning.
too much is the right amount, guys.
i believe that from the bottom of my bottom-most rock-bottom-hittin' heart.
*
there are no free minutes anymore.
there are only expensive seconds to spend on expensive sh!t.
the price tag is high,
but i'll fit it in the budget,
and none of the good reasons to sleep will be able to budge it,
everything costs something,
and i'm spending my most valuable currency-
time.
it's all really happening,
every minute is charged by the concentric clockwise spiral of a tightening gyre-
the coils of time are winding themselves up,
and the tension is palpable.
the air is electric,
and the feeling is one of pure lightning-striking viking berserker fury.
i s'pose we'll just have to wait and see how today goes, bros;
never quiet, never soft.....

Saturday, September 17

CIDER house rules.

broskis,
i used cider IN the cake.
y'know?
like,
instead of a different liquid.
yeah.
you got it.
i made a cider cake.
wanna see?
check the slices-and-sauces-type teleport:

C'MON, neighbors!!
there's something about pectin that makes a cake especially moist.
i mean,
when used in conjunction with a portion of tapioca,
a.k.a. puddin'-in-the-mix.
wait.
ok.
you're right.
i'll slow down.
i love baking.
we know this already.
i especially love to improvise.
that's a whole other well known fact.
but,
in addition to my love of improvised baking-
that intuitive meditative in-the-moment path of preparation and productivity-
i ALSO love to eat cake,
especially seasonally-appropriate site-specific slices of some
supremely septembery spiced apple ingredient jauns.
that's no joke.
you want this cake.
i know it.
here's what i think i did-
.
-1 stick of vegan butts
-and roughly 1 cup of sugar-
i used the remnants of three separate kinds,
but i doubt that it would matter much if you used just one.
-2 tsp vanilla
-1/2 tsp salt
creamed together in a stand mixer,
plus:
-1/2 cup unsweetened non-dairy yogurt (i used coconut for the record)
-2 1/2 cups of flour
-1/3 cup tapioca
-baking kapow and soda in individual tspfulls.
1 cup apple cider
lots of cinnamon, some ginger, a little mace, a pinch of nutmeg.
whisked until fluffyish,
and placed in a greased springform pan,
to bake at 360ish for 45ish minutes.
it was waaaay wetter at first, but it stayed waaaaaaaay moister when it was finished.
yum yum yum.
the apples on top were cooked a bit, to soften them.
that's three apples' worth of slices, with cinnamon, vanilla, and brown sugar,
plus a squeeze of lemon to keep 'em nice.
friends,
that sh!t right there is THE TRUTH.
i didn't even have to frost it.
it's too damned good all on it's own.
*
from out of nowhere,
i'm suddenly, totally, inexplicably perpetually unready.
yuck.
that's a tough way to be.
it seems like every single day,
i'm running late-
which happens to be especially weird
since prior to now,
i've taken great pride in always being at least 10 minutes early.
now, in addition to never sleeping,
i'm also lagging. sagging, and dragging my feet,
while still doing my damnedest to give the folks i'm interacting with
the best darn experience i can summon from the spirit and memory
of worthy warrior poetry.
it's tough, and it's tiring, and it's a ton of pressure (self-imposed)
to produce positive results against a tsunami tidal wall of opposing force.
ugh.
i don't know when this started happening, exactly-
actually,
i have got a pretty good guess-
but,
this is What Is, and it's all really happening.
my life, from now on, may be a bit behind schedule.
at least,
until i rebuild my immunity to the iocane inanity
of every day's efforts to end me once and for all.
yikes.
it's a fight to the finish,
right up until i finally fall asleep for a few seconds each night-
and weirdly,
i want to be in first place for the big finale every time.
it's all really happening, kids.
that's the WHOLE point.
all the cider (house) cake rules (is rules) on earth
can't save the day from ending;
and every one of those little deaths is a step or two further away
from tightness and brightness and bearable lightness than the last;
never quiet, never soft.....

Friday, September 16

CHAI-DAY

what.
the.
actual.
mother.
F*.
is sleep?
neighbors,
crabtree kept me up allllll night.
what?
no. he wasn't sick,
huh?
nope.
he just had a long day in the crate while i had an even longer day at work,
and as a result,
he was just turbo-rowdy,
and rarin' to ruin the first whole entire night i'd set aside; resigned,
designed and assigned to hand myself over to restful slumber,
and he set about wrecking the vibe right from the start.
so,
i'm STILL tired,
and i'm STILL reeling from the aftereffects of long nights and hard styles
and anxiety attacking the edges of my attention,
attenuating the ties between idea and ability.
huh?
^^^^ummmm, it's called complaining, neighbors.
and it's good for you.
no, seriously.
that's a science thing.
ANYway,
i've got a whole other 'nother other day fo doing what i do to look forward to,
and i'm sure it'll be somethin' else-
in the meantime,
despite leading into this mini-missive dropkick of debriefed doo-doo with a lament
about the werewolfen war that's ongoing throughout this full moon season-
i'd like to talk a bit about cookies.
yup.
cookies.
cookies are expert.
that's real.
and gluten-free sh!t can be expert, too,
if you don't suck at making things gluten-free.
.......and as it just so happens, i do NOT suck at making gluten-free things.
don't believe me?
check the teleport:

WORD!!!
sometimes,
you just need  cookie to make things better.
...
what even ARE they?
they're coconut chai spice jauns,
and they are, in fact, gluten-free.
how'd i make 'em?
like this:
-
1 stick vegan butts
1 cup-ish brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup unsweetened unsulphured fancy coconut flakes
creamed together,
and mixed with 6 oz applesauce
3 T chai spices-
(i used bengal spice tea, opened and dumped in)
11 turns of freshly cracked black pepper,
more ginger, cinnamon, mace, and cloves, by eye...
1/2 cup coconut flour
1 tsp-ish xantham gum
1 cup brown rice flour
1 cup white rice flour
1 tsp kapowder and 1 of soda, baking-style, for everybody.
-the usual pricedures are in place,
because rules is rules.
y'know?
golf-balls, pressed flat,
spaced evenly,
baked at 375F for 13 minutes.
how good are they?
what's the scale composed of?
i mean, they're triceratops on the dinosaur scale,
and they're olive green on the best-color-ometer.
what i's saying is: they're flippin' expert.
real talk.
hmmmm?
yea.
kapowdered sugar sprankles are what's dusty on those domes.
and yes,
that's cinnamon chai icing, exxxtra-thick,
drizzled pollock-style across the tops.
after all,
i'm NOT tryin' to be some sort of an A*-hole when i'm baking treats,
i'm shooting for more of an artistry that nourishes the ins and the outs.
yeah.
*
so,
gluten-free cookies is a thing.
heavy-lidded honey-colored eyes fading out of focus is another.
guys,
being sleepy feels like time is going slower.
normally, i think i'd like that.
however,
when it's been what feels like eight hours,
but in reality,
it's only been eight minutes?
that's an interminable extension of extreme temporal ambiguation.
ha.
you'd better believe i'll be chugging a hot black boiling vat of tar-consistency coffee.
yup.
(for those of you unaware of what a finely-calibrated performance machine i am-
even a little bit of caffeine turns up all the levels to eleven,
and redlines the outlets and exhaust ports to a full-blast blaring tuba solo
of noisy, messy, monstrous monster-truck crush-grooving)
mmhmm.
so, i'm sort of sorry about today-
.
dear friday,
     you'll be getting the cranky-pants berserker fury
     of a high-test feral raging stormswept savage gypsy sleepwalker,
     and i'd almost be apologetic if i wasn't somewhat certain you deserve it.

                                          yours in truth and trust,
                                                             xoxo,
                                                               -albie
.
...that's right, today.
you're the day.
just like all the others were and will be, before and after you-,
except, right now?
you're what's happening,
and that means i've gotta take out all the strain of bearing up
under the burdensome weight of all those others on YOU.
this is it,
and that's that;
never quiet, never soft.....

Thursday, September 15

why yes, i'd love some PIE.

that flaky crusty pie dough recipe is so expert,
i had to make even MORE.
yes, i did.
and yes, i did.
mmhmm.
i'm like that.
and besides,
too much is the right amount.
therefore,
i had my eye set on apple magic hottness well in advance of it's actual production.
i mean,
c'mon.
what's better in september than a big ol' daddy-sized deep-dish apple pie??
not much, that's for sure.
pie is essentially a pretty easy endeavor,
but, damn, does it ever deliver dividends of delicious once it's ready.
real talk.
i peeled, pared, cored, and chopped about 8 fresh local pie apples into chunks,
and simmered them in maple syrup, apple cider, raw sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg,
allspice, mace and ginger, with a splash of vanilla and a handful of old fashioned oats.
once they were all soft, and the pectin joined forces with the oats,
and all of that was cooling off?
it was time to roll and cut that crust.
guys,
this is what i came up with:

YEAH!!!
moths chasing hearts.
that's my jam.
stay ugly, stay dope, eat beautiful.
that's just how it is,
and doubly so  when you live in the remote woodlsy goodsly
hollowed hard-style hills of new hampshire.
i'm telling you,
a few demerara sprankles,
a little leafy cookie-style cut-out activation,
and suddenly, you've got yourself a little special somethin'-somethin'.
dudes,
i NEED a little special somethin'.
i baked it for 40 minutes at 375F,
and i came away with this golden delicious apple treat.
I LOVE PIE,
and i especially love to have a big fattie-boombattie slice of it,
and i double-especially love it when it's shared with a friend.
lucky for me,
yesterday i actually HAD friend.
beau came by for supper,
and he had some,
and some other other stuff,
and he even did the dishes.
lucky me.
*********
neighbors,
the werewolfen autumn moon is doing it's direst dark deeds to me.
i can feel it, on my skin, under my skin, in my blood, pulsing,
and it feels like losing at monopoly.
nobody even likes PLAYING monopoly,
so it's like losing twice.
maybe i'll get some sleep,
maybe i'll shed my skin and run away,
maybe, just maybe,
i'll transform into something even better than a battle-beast.
whatever happens,
there's no denying that it really can't be stopped;
never quiet, never soft.....

timeframes and timelapses.

jeez, dudes-
where was i yesterday?
well,
i was busy.
it turns out,
high anxiety breeds prolific activity.
some people lay on the floor and let their anxiety attack-
not me.
i stay up allllll night, and make things, instead.
yup.
writing,
and reading, and chopping all sorts of sh!t with a knife,
while the writhing worms of doubt and uncertainty do their damnedest
to leech the hottness from the present moment, creating sour stories for the future.
what?
what the heck does THAT even mean, you're asking?
well,
every day has all this opportunity for expanded level-eleven greatness,
but,
i've been letting the light of the nearly-full moon guide my
mind down impossibly dark paths and improbably deep wells,
mining the innermost layers of wonder and worry and world-weary woe.
nothing gold can stay, or so they say.
it's enjoying it when it shines that i have the hardest time with.
so,
instead of lamenting overlong all day, i do that instead of sleeping at night,
and during the sunshine hours,
i get busy as F* getting busier than F*.
ha.
yesterday, i had dough on the counter bulking up,
and tomatoes marinating in the fridge,
and so much ovenly lovin' that i almost wished i was two people,
just so i could eat twice as much in the same amount of time.
uh-huh.
beau came by for some world cuisine wednesday activation,
and together,
we snacked up on one helluva worthy meal.
check the friends-for-dinner-type teleport:

OOOOOOOOOOOOOF!
neighbors, slated, oiled, and roasted graffiti eggplant spears,
so, what's on that sexxxy plate?
that really realness, in several new ways-
*
blackened on the bottom, skins-on, and so soft they melted right into pure aether,
with the subtlest crunch before they dissolved.
damn!!
with scallion and tahini and aleppo pepper sprankles,
they had ALL the good good and also the nicey-nice.
*
there's broth-boiled farro with grilled red onion,
covered with a fresh tomato relich that rocked our faces right off.
yeah.
-garden fresh tomatoes from three separate sources,
mashed and married in olive oil, black pepper, sweet onion,
GPOP, parsley, smooshed garlic, and upgraded with toasted carawy and celery seeds.
holy crap.
that's some  rad sh!t to have happen to your tongue.
no joke.
*
seitan with oregano and paprika?
you bet. covered in thinly sliced onion,
and browned on both sides of that subtle, spicy, slightly smoky herb-crust!!!
c'mon.
that's pretty expert.
no?
ha.
i know it is.
*
homemade FLAT bread!
pita wedges cut from flour/water/salt.
yup.
that's it.
enough of each to make a wettish dough, and pan fry it into a circle of scoops
for that big deluxxe up top.
*
FALAFEL!!!
chick peas, scallions, cilantro, parsely, garnbanzo flour chia seeds,
spices on top of spices on top of spices, onion, garlic, gluten, lemon, oil, and love.
that's what these pan-seared circles are composed of,
and it's a goshdanged taste symphony, son.
i'm serious.
on a bed of greenery and purpleism,
with pickles and tahini and sumac,
because i'm not about to b!tch out on the burliness of a family dinner.
plus, toasted sesame...um, excuse me, sossamon, seed sprankles!!!
dinner gets done right.
now, if only i can transcribe and translate that into something more practical for
interpersonal relations throughout the rest of the week.
***********
i haven't slept more than 3 hours in a row for almost a week now.
it's taking a terrible toll on my constitution,
and waging a far far  worse war on my thoughts and performance as a person
in every theater of conflict that i'm engaged in.
anxiety begets anxiety, kids.
i'm not a diaperbaby,
but i do have an overactive imagination,
and it seems to have taken this opportunity to work a cointelpro plot
into the seams and creases in my otherwise impervious outer chitin.
F*.
events unfold,
and the slow transformation to loop-de-loopy loupe-garou,
courtesy of the waxing circle in the sky,
has got me seeing in the dark,
and not exactly liking what's casting shadows and stones in my direction.
it's all really happening,
and i s'pose we all get what we deserve;
never quiet, never soft......

Tuesday, September 13

SEPTEMBER APPLES.

i did it again.
another one.
a whole other 'nother other expert apple concoction,
with MORE pastry hottness,
especially for my own fat and eager F*ing face.
i ate sooooooo many,
i almost felt bad,
except,
they tasted sooooooo good.
and sometimes,
just feelin' good is good,
and therefore, that's just what we need.
of course,
besides needing some good feelings,
i think i also  needed another stomach,
so i could fit more of these fresh little flaky friends inside me.
look at 'em.
no, really-
just LOOK at these tasty little tarts via the teleport:

I LOVE APPLES!!!!
i did it right, too, dudes.
almond essence, brown sugar, ginger, a pinch of cloves,
a little nutmeg and allspice, and cinnamon, naturally, with a splash of vanilla,
and some lemon juice to keep those apples nice and tight.
did i toast up some vanilla and butter'n'sugar black walnuts?
of course i did.
who do you think i am?
some kind of an A*-hole?
jeez.
don't be dumb.
that's the flavor combo your face craves, kids.
apple walnut tart hottness,full-blown in flagrante.
yeah, that's IT!
the crust was predictably magnificent.
i gave you the recipe.
i also made more this morning.
i'm gonna need it, since apple pie is up next.
but,
i've gotta learn to braid first.
lame crusts aren't invited to my makeout parties.
-
the 4 " circles i cut were just enough to fit a few walnuts in the center,
and a square of apple slices, stacked on stacks of themselves,
so i could wrap the sides,
and give 'em an upgrade of pre-autumn leaves and stars.
i want pretty food,
even if that's mostly treats these days.
410F degrees, 30 minutes, abject perfection.
that's the truth.
-
.....how good are they?
seriously, bruh.
i ate a flippin' ton.
almost to the point of bellyachin'......
...and then?
mmhmmm.
i ate a few more.
a regular batch of dough made a dozen, and i ate six in a row.
i dunno if that's a testimonial you can trust,
but it IS the way the it went down.
***********
it's all really happening, guys.
that's the whole point.
this unpredictable, unmanageable tangled tousle of this convoluted wild ride-
that's what is unfolding along unmeasured miles of crumpled creases
in the discarded depths of the secret universal plan-
the long nights, and hard styles,
the deepest dark, the meager brights,
the spanning of ever-expanding expanses of empty space,
alongside whatever good and bad luck gets dropped off in-between.
how do you get ready for that?
no.
really.
how do you get ready for that?
i'm asking.
ha.
the path is unmarked, and the tarts are all gone.
so,
wherever the next step takes us,
i'm hoping there's at least going to be more treats;
never quiet, never soft.....

pizza!!!!!

dudes,
it's been too long since i last tuned up a tableful of mise en place.
and kneaded my needs into circles of sexxxiness.
i had to remedy that situation.
i HAD to.
i can't let time pass by without addressing the desires and wants
of my ever-more-emaciated face and frame.
huh?
i'm too skinny NOT to terrorize a tray of pizza, neighbors.
that's what i'm talking about.
i gotta have it.
i knew that ahead of time-
dough i'd already bulked twice and hooked-up
was cold proofing for hours and hours before i got home to handle my business.
and when i got home?
well,
i missed the golden hour by an hour.
damn.
i mean it.
the light was gone, but the pizza was still LIT AF.
real talk.
check the teleport:

wordimus prime.
i don't love the yellow light that my indoor nighttime craptacular stage has set up on it.
but,
this pizza is delicious, even with filtered artificial light's jaundiced jauns.
awwww.
tempeh bacon cubes!
multicolor garden-fresh gifted tomatoes!!
broth-braised brocclini bits!!!
purple and plain ol' potato chips!!!!
all spread over daiya mozzarella, on a seriously semolina-style crispy crust.
i baked the heck outta my babies at 475F,
on steady rotation in the convection scene.
i like it crawnchy, bro.
it's cool.
the dough for the pizza?
1 1/2 cup a.p. flour
1 cup semolina
2 tsp salt
1 T fast-acting yeast
1 T wheat gluten
and 1 cup warm water, plus 3 T,
and 1 tsp regular yeast,
with a pinch of sugar.
^^^^^^it worked,
it had an on-point flavor and texture,
and i only made two pizzas,
but the dough would've enough for three.
that's the way it works.
speaking of-
check the buff-crush-type teleport:

BUFFZ!!!
buffalo style seitan!!!!
ho'sauce and vegenaise and butter and GPOP and pepper and paprika
and more other nother ho'sauce and cayenne make that wheat-meat say HECK YEAH!
with crushed tomatoes,
daiya mozz', underchee', kale, yellow tomatoes, caramelized onions,
black pepper, and scallion sprankles????
yup.
that's expert.
but,
it's not enough for me.
you know the drill:
too much is the right amount,
and taking it to eleven is better than a perfect ten every time-
so there's hot-fire buffalo crema drizzled on top, too.
WORD.
***********
failing light is not a failure in practice,
but only in principle-
the days end when they end, a minute or so earlier until the end of december.
it's regularly scheduled intervals of devalued brightness.
i should be able to budget my time
so that my documentation of foodstuffs doesn't look budget
due to unforeseen force multipliers at work,
my small tattoos were big, and my big tattoos were even bigger.
the schedule was confusing,
and more was asked of me than what i was readily prepared for.
that's what  changed the timeframe,
which in turn changed the timeline,
which ultimately had me eating after dark.
nothing was worse off for the delay except for the pictures,
and i can live with that.
in principle, however, i'd like to always be AHEAD of schedule.
leading the day by the nose,
and surging across finish lines before everybody else-
unless it's the realm of sweet love we're talking about.
a tie, or even a slightly delayed finish would be fine in those circumstances.
that's when nice guys really do finish last.
(and then, only because they are considerate)
anyway,
i only ate half of each.
what?
am i serious?
yeah.
i AM serious.
that seems to be the way things fall in place lately.
always a little late, always a little less,
and always a bit darker than the bright spots i'm seeking out.
i think maybe it's just a lull before a surge.
i s'pose that's more my style anyway;
never quiet, never soft.....