Sunday, September 27, 2009

Better Things

Sorry for being such a downer. I usually don't let all the work crap get me down. Even if I'm feeling bad, I try to pretend to be upbeat. As one of my coworkers said on Friday, "If B's complaining, you know it's been a bad week." So, on the better things: The Weekend!

Yesterday, O and I skipped the Farmers' Market but still went to REAP's Food for Thought Festival. REAP is a Madison group that promotes fresh, healthy, local, sustainable food, and the festival is a "forum that explores and celebrates our many opportunities to eat more pleasurably, healthfully and sustainably." The Big Deal at the festival this year was a visit from Michael Pollan.

For those who've been living in a cave and don't know who Pollan is, he's a writer who pushes the fresh, healthy, local, sustainable food agenda. Even if you're not into reading about the mess our food system is in, he's hard to avoid because he's always in the paper or on the radio. I imagine he's on TV all the time also, but I wouldn't know because we don't have a TV. Well, we do have a TV, but we don't have cable and haven't bothered to get a converter box yet, so we don't receive anything on it from the outside world. So, at least I cannot add too much TV watching to my long list of vices (cussing, beer-drinking, sarcasm, general sloth, etc.).

Ah, I digress. I was talking about the festival. Our timing was perfect, arriving just before Pollan was introduced. Guess what he talked about? What a mess our current food system is in and how to move towards a fresh, healthy, local, sustainable food system. About 15 minutes into the speech, O wandered off in search of a cookie. As passionate about the "real food" movement as I am and as interesting as I find Pollan's writings, I'd heard and read everything he had to say before, and his star power wasn't enough to keep me there. So, about 20 minutes into the speech, I wandered off in search of O.

I spotted O strolling back toward the main festival tent. (O's easy to spot in a crowd, because he's the guy with the loudest shirt.) We wandered around the festival, checking out the displays--books, rain barrels, wool-spinning, etc--and sampling food. We split what was possibly the best brat I've ever had, a housemade brat cooked by our own famous Tori Miller of L'Etoile, and a blueberry lemonade. Yum. Then we were off for our usual Saturday visit to St. Vinnie's to scour the shelves for more used books and dinnerware for which we have no room.

Somehow, I managed to spent the entire afternoon doing nothing but cleaning and braiding some of the garlic from the garden and trying to take a nap.

Dinner was my non-traditional version of the traditional Tuscan dish panzanella: Chopped, drained tomatoes, chopped cucumber, sliced onion, toasted croutons tossed with juice from the tomatoes (that's the non-traditional part), olive oil, white wine vinegar, minced garlic, snipped fresh basil, salt, and freshly ground pepper. (It's A LOT better than it sounds!)


We skipped Furthermore's Shitty Barn Party, which we had planned on attending, because the designated driver (B) didn't want to drive 3 hours to stand around in mud puddles and watch a bunch of other people drink beer. What a party pooper! Instead, we ate popcorn and watched A River Runs Through It, a 1992 movie that somehow neither of us had ever seen. Two thumbs up on the movie.

Enjoy the rest of the weekend! I know I will!



FIONA said...

Loved A RIVER RUNS THROUGH IT. Glad you had a good weekend.

Denver's Finest said...

Huh. Never realized your soul was in such mortal peril, what with all the vices/sins you list. How could I have missed that for 18 years?

Miss you guys. Love, Sean

Barb said...

Thanks, Fiona!

I sure needed a relaxing weekend, and that was just the perfect movie for my mood.

Do you have any recommendations for similar movies?

Barb said...

Sean, Darling!

Is there something wrong with my math, or were there 6 years when you didn't miss all my vices?

Miss you more ;)

Love, Mom