Monthly Archives: October 2012

Perfect is Boring

I have probably watched more television this last year than I have the rest of my life put together. Ironic seeing as I don’t actually own a TV, but thanks to Netflix and Hulu I’ve been able to catch up on entire TV series.

Watching one series at a time works well for me. I get disconnected waiting week to week to watch the next episode of a show and am rarely free when an episode airs on TV, so Netflix and Hulu are wonderful.

I’ve always been a multi-tasker. Usually when I watch TV I’m running on the treadmill, washing dishes, painting, or folding laundry. I set my laptop up in the corner and work and relax at the same time. Lately, I’ve been on a bit of a reality TV kick. I never got into American Idol but, for some reason, I love the X Factor. The most fascinating thing about competitive reality shows is watching gifted contestants interact with each other. So many start out strong and full of confidence. They know they have talent. They are used to being on top— then they meet the competition. Singing, modeling, dancing- it doesn’t seem to matter. Some of the strongest contestants start to crumble, not because they are any less talented, but because they start looking around at everyone else instead of looking ahead.

Dr. Michael Easley once said, “Comparison is the kiss of death of gratitude. When you start comparing your lot in life to somebody else’s you stop being thankful for what God has given you. Comparison will stop gratitude every time.” It seems so innocent to compare, but it can be so deadly. When contestants start to compare themselves, you can often see the confidence get sucked out of their eyes. They often start to lose their nerve and lose the special something that made them so good to begin with.

We are a society plagued not only with the desire to compete; but also the tendency to compare. Which kid is cuter? Whose bike is better? Who is the more talented singer, actor, writer, photographer the list is endless. Somewhere in the middle of it all, the idea that different people have different styles has gotten lost. One particular style isn’t necessarily better than another style; it’s just different. If everyone looked the same, sounded the same, or even had the same style of painting how boring would that be. Model Tyra Banks likes to say, “Perfect is boring, human is beautiful.”

Being human means being an individual and liking a unique combinations of colors, foods, clothing, and even hobbies. It also means that not everyone will agree with you all of the time, because you have different thoughts and feelings. It means you are an original and not to be compared to anyone else.


Filed under Contemplations

Foodie Wanna Be

There is something incredible about a well prepared meal- not just the taste but the color, aroma, and mystery of a well crafted dish. But, it’s even more than that. Food can invoke a memory and even help change a mood which is a big part of the reason restaurants are so popular—that and there are no dishes to wash afterwards.

I like to cook, but would not call myself an accomplished chef or anything like that. But, I like to play around. Part of this last year’s adventure for me (living in a partially finished apartment) has been learning to create appealing meals without an oven or stove. Tricky? yes, but for Christmas my younger brother bought me an amazing free standing electric skillet. It has become my favorite cooking buddy, and last week my dad finished putting in the apartment’s counter top which has been wonderful. No more balancing three plates on unstable surfaces. Yes, there have been some casualties. I still miss my snowman mug. All the electrical outlets are now in as well  which means no more blowing the breaker by using the microwave and toaster at the same time. I am still hoping for a stove, but I can see it in the near future.

But, in celebration of surviving an interesting year of learning to cook with limited resources (and a tight budget) here are some of my more successful experiments.

Basil Chicken- a quick and tasty dish. I love rice, and chicken breast are so easy to thaw in the microwave and cook in my trusty little skillet. The secret to this dish is butter and some dried basil. Simple, but it smells amazing when it is cooking and tastes pretty good too.

I love Saturday morning breakfast. I like to scramble up some eggs and then add tomatoes, spinach, and cheese. The best part though is homemade chai, but I drink that everyday and usually a couple times a day on the weekends. Special thanks to my Kenyan friends who keep me well supplied with tea leaves. I am not an addict or am I? I just know that chai makes every day just a little bit better.

A quick snack- salsa, spinach, and cheese. Microwave and then top with some sour cream because sour cream improves everything. I like to cut mine into pizza slices, but it’s good rolled up too.

Indoor picnic- Bratwursts, corn, and tomatoes. I like to fry the frozen corn up with the bratwursts after they have cooked for a while. It gives the corn a nice roasted taste.

The best take to work lunch. Slice up left over bratwursts with cooked bow tie paste, mayo, spinach, and tomatoes. Don’t forget the best part, lots of parmesan cheese.

On the go breakfast- Avocado on pumpernickel toast. Salt the avocado, and it makes a delicious spread.

What are your favorite quirky meals?


Filed under Home Improvement, Humor