News for October 2012

What Are You? Chicken?


TUESDAY MORNING (the time not the place)

Though a decade has passed since my vegetarian days it has remained true that eating animals still kind of grosses me out. To overcome this I tend to eat meat in forms that least resemble its source. I’ll take a hamburger over a steak and a chicken strip over a drumstick any day. If the turkey is carved in the kitchen I have an easier time with it.
Similarly I rarely prepare meat. When I’m on the road or Jodi’s gone (as she is this week) I naturally cook vegetarian because as it turns out dead animals have blood on them. And I don’t like blood.

I think that blood and evidence of life are the root of the best arguments both for and against eating animals.

I think that I’m not interested in arguing right now so I won’t go there.

What I will say is this: Yesterday I bought a whole chicken that looks a lot like the chickens a few of my neighbors have in their backwards – except the one I bought doesn’t have feathers or a head. Or a pulse. And tonight I plan on roasting this chicken. All by myself. Me and a dead bird.


Here’s how it went down:

Step 1. – Find A Recipe.
I enjoy watching America’s Test Kitchen on PBS so I started here and won.
Here you have it.
In watching this video my recipe choice was confirmed when they acknowledged this recipe was created with Tuesday evenings in mind.  Someday I may try it on a Wednesday or even, gasp, a Sunday.  But for now the fewer variables the better.

Step 2. – Instill Responsibility/Pass The Buck.
The next step in handling this bird was trying to convince my 9 year old that she’s old enough to bake a chicken all by herself. She was not interested.

Step 3. – Follow The Recipe.
I thought this would be the crazy part. Crazy kitchen hijinks would befall me and hilarity would ensue. Not so. Everything went smooth. Real smooth. To the point of being a boring blog smooth. (Like you hadn’t already figured that one out.) In the end I was only mildly grossed out during the prep work and totally thrilled when I pulled this out of the oven:

Step 4. – Eat.
I made some buttermilk biscuits too. Yum. And then a variation of the pan sauce in the above recipe. Also yum. Bonus: The kids loved the sauce. After professing said love I told them it had onions and dijon mustard in it. They were flummoxed.

Moral of the story?

I rule.

Posted: October 24th, 2012
Categories: Uncategorized
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Hope For The Old Folks.

It’s not uncommon to desire hope for our children.  That’s a good thing, but I think it’s really just how old folks look for their own hope.  We (the old) put our worries on our children and then offer them hope so that we can feel hopeful.  Tracking?

Sure you are.

With all my churchyness, I hear a lot of adults voice concerns about churches shrinking, membership declining, Sunday schools drying up and only a handful of kids getting confirmed.

Well as a hack professional allow me to assuage your worries with these two words:


Hmmm… Perhaps I should rephrase that.  On second thought, No.  I would only make it worse.  But I can explain.

I like to bike.  In mountain biking there’s an important concept you learn early on in navigating single track:
Look where you want to go.

Why?  Because where your eyes look your body will follow.

This last weekend I was surrounded by church folk who were doing just this:  Looking where they want to go.  Rethinking.  Reimagining.  Reworking.  Rather than focusing on what’s wrong they are looking at what’s right.  And similar conversations are happening all over in worshiping communities around this country and around the world.  They’re sharing a story of hope.  They’re telling the story of where they want to go.

It’s fine and healthy to name the junk in your congregation.  It’s cathartic to name things that suck.  It’s important to know what dangers lie about on the trail.  But that’s not where you want to go now, is it?  Duh.

So acknowledge what is and live into the hope of what is to come.

You want hope for the children?  Then be hopeful.




Posted: October 17th, 2012
Categories: Uncategorized
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