HEART, ARTS, LAUGHS AND INSPIRATION
Greetings all –
Presenting Wednesday Reader.
QUICK QUESTION —
What hasn’t changed about me over the years? My smile and laugh. You?
LESLIE ELMAN never disappoints with her trippy trivia. So interesting!
JERRY CLOWER remains one of my all-time-favorite southern comedians. So Real. Funny. Full of Heart. I can remember listening to him at my grandparents home. And they played it on their stereo record player.
Yes! So much fun to listen to Jerry Clower from Yazoo City, Mississippi.
He’s not on planet earth now – but I can still hear his booming, happy voice.
YouTube him for a treat!
Regarding this particular story — “Hey, Mom, how much money did you pay for my 3 years of piano lessons?”
A lot, for sure.
I can sit down at any piano and play chopsticks like a champ. HA! And “Nothing But the Blood of Jesus.” (Just in case the church piano player was out for the day – haha)
TUSCAN MEATLOAF recipe is so good.
Yes, I know, meatloaf is meatloaf — save this recipe. Fresh mint and sauteed onions takes it to blue ribbon status. Try it, you’ll like it as the old commercial assured us. Was definitely Peter’s favorite. I love it, too.
TRACY BECKERMAN’S chocolate column is super fun. Me? I’ve always been a choose the chocolate ice cream girl. And if I feel like really getting fancy – Rocky Road! You?
Although not much of a sweet seeker (cheese is my go-to) I do like a little chocolate in my life from time to time.
Thanks for sliding by today and giving us a read and your thoughts. Grateful.
See ya Friday!
- FROM GROUNDBREAKING TO OFFICIAL OPENING, HOW LONG DID IT TAKE TO COMPLETE THE EMPIRE STATE BUILDING?
a) 1 year, 45 days
b) 4 years, 11 months
c) 10 years
d) 13 years, 1 week
- WHICH FASHION DESIGNER LAUNCHED THE POLO BRAND IN 1967?
a) Bill Blass
b) Donna Karan
c) Michael Kors
d) Ralph Lauren
- WHICH IS TRUE ABOUT FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT MILLARD FILLMORE?
a) Born outside the continental United States
b) Last Whig Party president
c) Only president to be a licensed physician
d) Proposed the 13th Amendment, abolishing slavery in the U.S.
WHAT HASN’T CHANGED ABOUT YOU OVER THE YEARS?
POP QUIZ ANSWERS
- From groundbreaking on Mar. 17, 1930, to official opening on May 1, 1931, construction of the Empire State Building took one year and 45 days — 410 days total.
- The Polo Ralph Lauren sportswear brand originated in 1967.
- Millard Fillmore, who served from 1850 to 1853, was the last U.S. president from the Whig Party.
~ Copyright 2023 LESLIE ELMAN
DISTRIBUTED BY CREATORS.COM
PUBLIC SCHOOL MUSIC CLASS
BY JERRY CLOWER
I took public school music at East Fork Consolidated High School. That was the only mandatory course we had in the whole school system. You didn’t have no choice; you had to take it. Miss Minnie Lee Stone was our teacher, and whenever she knocked on the door and come in, it didn’t make no difference what course you was a studying, you shut them books up and paid attention to her.
One day she entered the ninth grade class. Me and Marcell Ledbetter, his younger brother Claude, Ardell, and Burnell, Wilma Nell and Raynell, and Christine and W.L.., and Sonny made up that class. Miss Minnie Lee Stone come walking in and she had two young guns with her a-totin’ pasteboard boxes what had public school instruments in them. We was going to be members of the public school band. If you acted real nice she would let you whip them sticks together, and if you was good for two class meetings hand running, you could whop that tambourine. And if you was real good, you could hold that little triangle and take that little steel bar and tinkie, tinkie, tink on that triangle, that was the leading instrument in the public school band.
This particular day she was all excited. Miss Minnie Lee Stone said, “Class, you know I have always regretted very much that none of y’all have never heard no world-renowned musician, but Mr. Dellsey, what’s a world-famous piano player, is coming to McComb to visit his mama. I have written to him, and he is coming to East Fork and play for the chapel program, and y’all are gonna get to hear a world-renowned piano player.”
The day he showed up, they made all of us go into the main big room where the piano was. They roped off the public school music group — made us sit as a group. Miss Minnie Lee Stone explained to us that this here Mr. Dellsey was going to be playing one of them concerto overtures what he had been playing in the minors — or for the minors, one or the other. I remember distinctly, them minors were involved in it one way or the other.
She said, “Class, if you will pay attention to this great artist, you can see in story form what it is he’s playing.”
And we listened real good.
Now, folks, that ain’t the first time he’d ever played one of them pianos. Oh, he could forevermore whip up on a piano. Ever now and then he’d forget what piece it was he was playing and he’d just freeze, but in a second or two he’d think of it, and, brother, he would take off one more time.
Soon as he got done playing, they dismissed everybody except that group that was roped off. Miss Minnie Lee Stone had started squalling. It had done got to her. She was squalling and saying, “Class, wasn’t that wonderful? Now, tell the teacher, what did you see? Some of you girls, what did you see?”
Christine throwed her hand up.
“Yes, Christine, what did you see?”
Oh, Miss Minnie Lee, I saw a little deer running through the woods.”
“Oh, marvelous, Christine. Wonderful, wonderful. You thrill me to death!
Wilma Nell, what did you see?”
Wilma Nell jumped up and said, “Oh, Miss Minnie Lee, I saw the little deer take a drink out of the bubbling brook while the water was pouring over the dam.”
“Oh, God bless you, Wilma Nell! I’m so proud of this class. Let’s hear from some of you boys.”
“Claude Ledbetter, what did you see? Claude?”
Claude rammed both hands in his overall pockets up to his elbows. He commenced to squirming and rubbing his bare feet on the floor. He spun all the way around in the desk — desks weren’t anchored to the floor at East Fork School.
“I ain’t gonna lie about it. I ain’t seen nothing, but I heard that dam when it busted.”
~ STORIES FROM HOME, by Jerry Clower
story is reprinted with permission of University Press of Mississippi
PEOPLE RESPOND TO BEAUTY. IT SOUNDS VAIN, BUT IT’S TRUE.
“Starve the landfills. Recyle.”
RIDDLE ME THIS
WHAT IS HARDER TO CATCH THE FASTER YOU RUN?
Meatloaf is so central to American cuisine that messing with the standard, familiar recipe seems un-American. Topped with sauteed onions instead of a tomato sauce, THIS meatloaf is the exception to the rule. It is an Italian inspired version and it is incredibly good. However, if you must see red — a good marinara sauce works nicely. Serves 6-8
IN A LARGE BOWL COMBINE:
- 1 1/2 pounds ground beef
- 1 1/2 pounds ground pork
- 3 large eggs
- 3/4 cup Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
- 1/3 cup fresh flat leaf parsley, minced
- 1/3 cup fresh mint, minced
- 2 cups fresh bread crumbs
(or 1″ cubes of french bread or baguette cubes soaked in milk for about 15 minutes before mixing in with the meat mixture)
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- 1 cup of chicken broth (maybe a little more to cover the bottom of the baking sheet)
PREHEAT OVEN TO 350*
WITH SUPER CLEAN HANDS OR GLOVES ON:
Mix all ingredients until well combined.
PREPARE A LARGE COOKIE SHEET LINED WITH FOIL:
Make a free form loaf with your hands on the foil lined cookie sheet.
Carefully, pour chicken broth on bottom of the sheet.
BAKE FOR 45 MINUTES (COVER TOP WITH FOIL IF IT STARTS TO BROWN TOO MUCH)
WHILE MEATLOAF IS BAKING – IN A SAUCE PAN COMBINE:
2 cups chicken broth
3 large yellow onions, peeled and sliced thin
HEAT OLIVE OIL. ADD ONIONS. SAUTE UNTIL ONIONS ARE SOFT
Heat olive oil on stove over medium to medium-high heat. Add onions and saute until they are super soft. Add chicken broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and let broth and onions gently simmer for about 30 minutes (reducing broth liquid).
TAKE MEATLOAF OUT OF THE OVEN AND LET REST ABOUT 10 MINUTES
Spoon onion mixture over each serving of sliced meatloaf when “plating” it.
Serve with scalloped, mashed or baked potatoes and a favorite green (asparagus, broccoli, spinach)
~ Hippie Cowboy recipe box
LOST IN SUBURBIA
TRACY AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY
BY TRACY BECKERMAN
Every so often, I get an email of doom that has been sent to me along with everyone else on the planet. The last one I received warned that we are on the verge of a severe Global Chocolate Shortage. The alleged cause is a combination of high demand and some alienesque choco-viruses that are attacking our beloved cocoa beans. Of course, since people forward me this kind of email Armageddon all the time, I immediately have my doubts. But since this was chocolate they were talking about, and I have a love for chocolate that rivals my love for children, you can imagine my total, utter, complete dismay bordering on hysteria when I got this email predicting the coming of Chocoapolyse.
The truth is, I have never been a vanilla person. As a kid, I hated vanilla ice cream, thought vanilla wafers were a waste of time and refused to eat yellow cake. As an adult, I became more tolerant of vanilla, but my one true love has always been and will continue to be chocolate. The chocolatey-er, the better. Dark chocolate, milk chocolate, mint chocolate, peanut butter chocolate — I am down for basically anything made with, filled with or covered with chocolate, with perhaps the only exception being bugs chocolate-covered buts … But the bugs are not necessarily a deal breaker.
Fortunately, according to the email, the CRC (Cocoa Research Center) is on the case, working on new strains of cocoa beans that can stop these choco-viruses in their tracks. Their motto is, “To chocolate infinity and beyond,” and they will stop at nothing to not only make more chocolate, but to make it better tasting as well. Sounds like a sweet plan to me.
However, I’m not betting that things will turn around that quickly, so like any smart chocoholic facing a Chocapolypse, I started hoarding KitKats and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. Could I, myself, be contributing to the shortage? Maybe. But I also have to put my family’s well-being first, and I know that once a month, if there is no chocolate in the house, things could get ugly.
Still, I’m smart enough to realize that, like many things I read on the internet, this rumor might not actually be true. So I checked the online authority on internet hearsay, Snopes.com, who proclaimed the Chocapolyse to be mostly false, and predicted more of a likelihood of rising prices than lack of chocolate.
Relieved that I was less likely to run out of chocolate that be notified by an Arabian prince that I am the sole beneficiary of a 160-million-dollar inheritance and a herd of camels as long as I forward my Social Security number and the code to my bank account, I decided to let go of my Chocapolypse concerns and stop worrying that we will have to endure a Halloween composed solely of Dum-Dum lollipops.
… Not to be confused with the Dum-Dum who believed there was a Chocapolyse coming.
~ Tracy Beckerman is the author of the Amazon Bestseller, “Barking at the Moon: A Story, Love, and Kibble.
COPYRIGHT 2023 CREATORS
- Left-handed athletes have an advantage in some sports. Not so in polo, where players are prohibited from wielding the mallet in their left hand. The rule has been in effect for decades to protect horses from colliding when two players charge toward the ball. (In the 1900s, the Hurlingham Club in England kept a roster of left-handed players, presumably so they could play together.) Lefties aren’t just barred from the sport today; they simply have to swing with their right hands. That’s what natural lefty Prince William does.
- A solar eclipse doesn’t last much more than 7 minutes. Imagine painting one with scientific accuracy. Harold Russell Butler did just that when he joined an astronomical expedition to view the 1918 total solar eclipse in Oregon. Using a shorthand notation system of his own devising, Butler documented the shapes, brightness and colors of the eclipse. Then he painted, capturing pinpoint detail from his notes and recollections, and forging the most accurate depiction we have of that rare event.
- Wigs have gone in and out of fashion ever since the ancient Egyptians wore them to enhance beauty, hide baldness and mark ceremonial occasions. Roman men and women wore them, too, sometimes opting to go blond in wigs made from the fair hair of Teutonic slaves and prisoners. The early Christian church took a dim view of wigs, even excommunicating some wig wearers. By the 16th century, when Elizabeth I ruled England, wigs were back in fashion. She reportedly had many of them, coiffed in various styles, though the notion that she wore wigs because she was bald is a myth.
- Introduced in 1903 — more than 30 years before Monopoly — Pit was a parlor card game inspired by the agricultural commodities market. Game play was a chaotic free-for-all — not unlike the real exchange floor — in which players traded cards with their neighbors to “corner the market” on a single commodity, such as wheat, corn or flax. “Pit parties” became a craze and more than a million units of the game were sold in its first year.
~ COPYRIGHT 2023 LESLIE ELMAN
DISTRIBUTED BY CREATORS.COM