Monthly Archives: October 2008

Fork You Live this Saturday + season three launch

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As you can see from the video above, we’ve finally got some fresh Fork You goodness for your viewing pleasure. This is from a Fork You Live that we did at Foster’s Homeware last spring, where we made a selection of dips and dippers (all easy and all so very, very yummy).

Additionally, if you’re in the Philadelphia area, you should head over to Foster’s Homeware at 2 pm tomorrow, where we’ll be cooking our way through the second to last Fork You Live of 2008. I’ll be making up a batch of veggie soup (with an array of optional toppings) and some tasty drop biscuits. It’s a great meal for an informal dinner with friends or family because the veggies are built into the soup and everyone can customize the soup to their heart’s content.

On being something of a Phillies fan

While I’ve never been much of a sports fan in any sense of the word, I’ve definitely been swept along lately in the energy that having the Phillies in the World Series. So much so, that I recently participated in a fan video for uwishunu (a blog run out of my office). And, sitting here, watching the last inning of Game 5 (hopefully the last game of the series definitely the final game, hooray!), I thought it was appropriate to post it.

Gathering windfall apples on Sauvie Island

On the ground
During my childhood, there was a stretch of several years when, during the fall, my mom, sister and I would drive out to Sauvie Island. We’d park in the grassy lot at the Bybee-Howell house and pick up windfall apples from the antique apple orchard there. We weren’t allowed to pick any off the trees, they used those to make apple cider for the annual Wintering In Festival, but anything that was on the ground was fair game. We’d bring the dog, several brown paper bags and a picnic lunch (if it wasn’t too cold) and spend several hours breathing in the heady fumes of apples as they turned to booze.

Toasty, our dog at that time, loved fruit and so would zig zag between our legs with a half-chewed apple in her mouth. I took my job as apple scavenger very seriously, filling my bag until it threatened to tear under the weight of the apples. Occasionally I’d lose my footing for a moment on a rotting apple, but even that seemed unthreatening, just a small price to pay for free apples.

The orchard was always quiet, any sounds from the road muted by the fallen leaves and the curve of the hill. In my memory, it was always overcast in that way that is unique to Oregon, with mist that sometimes turned into drizzle. Occasionally a sunbeam would glow through the moisture, illuminating the entire orchard with diffuse light that made us feel like we were on stage, play about to begin.

The Bybee-Howell farm is the highest point on Sauvie Island and was the place that residents from all over the island would gather during the yearly floods, back in the days before the dike was built that controlled the river. I learned that when I was nine, when they still offered tours of the old farm house. I also remember that throughout the house, the door knobs were lower than seemed practical, because during the time that the house was built, it was the fashion that ladies be able to just skim the tips of their fingers along the knobs.

When we were done, we’d carefully scrap mud and bits of apples off our shoes and head for home with our scavenged goody bags. Later that day, my mom would get down to the business of washing, peeling and chopping the apples (carefully cutting around any yucky bits), making four or five gallons of apple sauce before she was done. All that apple sauce would get loaded into zip top bags and stacked in the freezer, so that we’d have sauce to last us until the next fall.

Updates from my urban life


My sister blew through town earlier in the week, bringing with her a handful of new songs, John Elliot, Mudge the accupuncturist and lots of chaos. She rolled in a minute or two after 4:30 pm on Sunday afternoon, pulling her ‘new’ Subaru station wagon into the parking garage just as I was leaving to go to latihan. She lept out of the car and tackled me with hugs. It had been nearly ten months since we had last touched. Also standing with me was my cousin Sabrina with a sleeping Juliet (now nearly two months old). They had been walking past, heading home after some errands and so had waited with me to see Raina. It was a moment of gorgeous synchronicity, as four members of the same family unexpectedly met on a little patch of concrete for ten minutes.

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Two weeks ago, Aunt Anne died. She would have been 89 this Monday. After living for nearly nine decades, she was more than ready to go. I am sad, though, that she didn’t live to see the November election. She hated George Bush and would have loved to have seen Barack Obama win (and according to recent polls, he is winning!). She was the last member of her generation and lived in altering states of disorientation and clarity. My father often spoke with her about god, spirituality and the possibility that the soul continues to exist after the body dies. We all hope that those talks gave her some sense of comfort and aided in her ability to let go. I am relieved that she is no longer struggling with a body that can’t seem to get enough oxygen, but I do miss her loving sass.

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Last Friday, Scott and I were driving to a friend’s surprise party, trying to get there before the birthday boy got home from work. The post-work traffic was slow and I found myself getting frustrated quickly. I normally try to be a generous driver, believing that the world flows better if you let people change lanes and pay attention to your part in the body of traffic. However, in that moment, I struggled to stay in that place, just wanting to get there. At the peak of my frustration, a cab driver to the left of me rolled down his window and asked me to let him move over into the lane in front of me. In Philadelphia, cab drivers never ask and rarely attempt to obey traffic laws, moving as if rules do not apply to them. The fact that this one individual was willing to communicate and engage in the conversation of driving surprised and delighted me. I let him in with a grand wave of both arms and felt my frustration drop away.

Fork You Live and Raina Rose

Raina and her banjo
I’m probably far too late in posting this, but for those of you who are still reading this mostly-neglected website, I’ve got a couple events happening this weekend for your consideration.

This Saturday at 2 pm, Fork You Live returns (after a two-month hiatus) to Foster’s Homeware (399 Market Street). We’ll be making apricot-glazed chicken wings, a big pear and fennel salad and baked apples. I’m excited about all this lovely fall food, although Scott isn’t a fan as he doesn’t particularly like chicken on the bone, fennel or fruit. However, I promise that it will be delicious and we’ll see, maybe I’ll make a convert out of him yet.

On Sunday, my favorite curly-haired, rock star sister, Raina Rose, rolls into Philadelphia (along with the very talented John Elliott). They’ll be playing a show at 7 pm on Sunday in the chapel at the Church (2125 Chestnut Street, side entrance). Tickets are $10 at the door and all proceeds go to ensuring that two talented musicians are able to eat and pay for gasoline.