Friday, March 19, 2010

AD: Looking for someone to please retrieve our food processor from storage.

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Hello Everybody,

Yup, we miss our food processor, while we can buy one here, probably a better version that can also mince meat, plus a digit or two, nevertheless I want our old helper.  Why?

Well, because I’ve worn down the sole of my hand grinding up spices!  Particularly last week when I attempted to make tamales. Yes you read right…tamales in Germany.  I’ve seen it done once or twice before (not in Germany) and I thought I’d like to make some too.

Why I need my food processor.

Grinding 6 different chiles to make the chile powder, was not easy. Boiling the meat to mix with the chile powder, onions, garlic, cumin and cook for 2 hours, somewhat easy. Making the masa dough, easy.  Assembling the tamales, not easy.  Cooking or should I say steaming, thus began the experiment. 

I wish I could say I took pictures, but I didn’t.  This was a once through for me and before I share with everyone else I’d like to make sure I know what I’m doing.  I’m glad to report that my first batch of tamales was…similar to what one gets when you mix mentos with soda.

Yeah…not that explosive. Let us say, if one was to record the mentos/soda explosion and then played it back in HD slow motion, really extra super dense antimatter slow mo, thick as bees on a thieving bear slow mo. Get it, fast but slow, because you can see the accident happening, but can’t really do much about it.  Picture Mt. Saint Helen after it had exploded and the lava had oozed out the top reforming the geographical area, where then one asked, “Where’d the forest go?” Except in this case it would be, “Where’d the tamales go?”  something like that. 

So my ratios were off.  Ok, my filling to dough ratio was way off.  The filling went all over my tamale landscape.  Tragic, corn husks fighting for their lives, there was no stopping it.  Once the red button that says ignition was struck, it was full tilt boogie and the tamales were swimming in spicy chicken filling.  But I guess a bend in the road is not the end of the road... unless of course you fail to make the turn. 

Then like a godliness light… L said, “Why don’t we try them?” With slight trepidation and after certain geochemical considerations and inspection, I lifted the isotopic matter revealing it’s compositional variations. The first layer hardy resembled tamales. Yes the topography of my tamales had been skewed and suffered the wrath that is spicy chicken and gooey dough, but…but, nestled under this travesty was life and it was tasty.

Underneath the first layer of mush the tamales looked like tamales. In fact newly born tamales and next to that tamale another clone and next to that tamale another clone. Tamale clones born just to serve our taste buds.  Yes the ratios were off, but it tasted like I remember tamales tasting.

There is hope!

I will be making tamales again and this time I’ll include pictures.  If someone told me, when I was 19, that I’d  be living in Germany making tamales with my sweetheart. I’d probably say something similar to, “Yeah, whatever.” 

With that said, “Yeah, whatever.”

missing everyone,


Friday, March 5, 2010

Rothenburg and BRMC

Hello Everybody,

As my friend Brumley pointed out, I haven’t posted in a while and there is no real reason why I haven’t, so I won’t make one up.

The last couple of weeks have been quite busy. This is the first week L and I got to veg out. Let’s see…

Last week L’s coworkers from P-town were here for work. Sunday night a friend of ours cooked them dinner and then Monday night I cooked them dinner. It was quite fun cooking for them and having them over. I always realize how much I miss having conversations with people. Talking with Jean-Luc well, it’s always a one way street heading nowhere with Jean-Luc. He looks at me and is like, “Quoi! Je ne vous comprende pas.”

Thursday night one of L’s coworkers stayed at our house, so of course, I had to have him taste as many different beers as he could get down. Don’t worry, we still remembered our names in the morning.

Friday we drove to Rothenburg for a visit.

Here are some pictures of the trip.




Their city wall is way cooler than our city wall. what gives?IMG_2228



1034 or 1634?



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we got caught making out.


I really like this building.


The Criminal Museum.


IMG_2263 They had ways of making people talk back then…here are some pictures to get your imagination going.

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L got caught for slander.



Their local church, which was built in 1501

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The organ was later added in the 50’s

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The following Saturday I took L and her coworker to the document center in Nuremberg and then walked around the rally grounds. That evening we had dinner with the Herzo Husband group, including wives.

Lastly Sunday afternoon, we had a pleasant lunch with our neighbors, Hans and Uli. Had our first deep-fried Karpfenn (carp), a local fish that is grown in the surrounding area. Fatty goodness, sort of like catfish.

And yesterday I got a call from the Gymnasium, 1. to tell me I had a job and 2. I was suppose to have started last week. So with that said, I now work at one of our local high schools and my first presentation or lecture was on generational and gender differences depicted in the film “The Graduate.” Baby boom VS. the 60’s. It went well. I wish I had a video camera, I enjoyed watching them debate over the actions of Mrs. Robinson.

Moving on…



Album/beat the devils new tattoo = soundtrack to our life in Germany.

I’ve listened to the album (what’s on their myspace) three times as I was writing this blog and once again with my full attention for a small review.

Here it is…I have been converted. While A&S got me into Baby 81, I was never fully committed as a listener, until now. I may just have to go see them in Munich. I like the new drummer. She adds a lilt that wasn’t there before. Her singing, I’m not sold yet, but I do like it. As I do not have M. Anello’s word smith attributes for writing album reviews, I will try my best.

Half-state: really resonates with me, It feels like where we (or at least where I’m at) at the moment. Plus, she (the drummer) is laying down a sweet sweet groove…just listen.

The Toll: well they just say it all don’t they.

Mama Taught Me Better: Once again better drumming. This song is making me do some self-reflecting. Where’s my alter? Great song!

War Machine: naughty naughty…get the rock out baby 81, you just ain’t as proud.

Evol: Makes me want to dance in the streets of Herzo, screaming why can’t you be like me, where’s your love.

Shadow’s Keeper: OH yeah! their bass lines kick serious ass. The song is good, but drags a bit, but picks up just when I feel like changing the song. I’ll listen to this song again later, did I mention their bass lines kick ass.

Aya: Can people say, “John Bonham, when the levee breaks.” Plus his screaming a la Cobain stylie are sending me to a place that was forgotten when I left the beaches of Texas.

Beat the Devil’s Tattoo: I’ll never forsake the love you all have given. This song makes me love you all even more and when the beat kicks in with the singing…forget it!!!, I’m back in our car driving to Shelton with the crew. While it’s not a devil’s tattoo I’m after, it is the sweet embrace of family and friends we miss.

OK then, there is my review of the songs on BRMC’s myspace, I’m sure the other songs are great as well. I’ll buy the album if I go see them in Munich, or tomorrow, which ever comes first.

Miss you all,