Since I gave up nine to five for twenty-four seven, waking up in the middle of the night no longer means yawning during a morning meeting, or grabbing a nap in my car during my lunch hour. There’s a delicious kind of decadence, I find, in not having a fixed schedule to which my life must adhere. I LIKE IT! Last night my eyes opened wide at 2:45 a.m. and refused to be lulled back to sleep. Once my mind shifts into gear it requires an act of congress, and you know how long that can take when you factor in recesses, sabbaticals, coffee breaks, spring breaks, summer breaks, and filibusters, to turn it off again.
Reassuring myself the plumbing still worked, I left my snoring hero in the bedroom. Boo, the Queen of Cats, gave me a one-eyed glare from her favorite chair when I switched the light on in the kitchen. If she’d had a watch she would have pointed a furry paw at the dial. Flicking “on”, the coffee pot began its slow drip. Funny how long it takes to brew a pot, when you’re waiting for that first cup. Opening the dishwasher, I deposited the evidence of my other half’s late night snack in one of the racks. Tuna sandwich from the looks of it.
Glorious. The middle of night, fodder for ghost stories and things that go bump, is a nice place to find yourself on occasion. No mail, no phones, no chores or shopping to do, nothing bubbling on the stove needing your attention. Heavenly peace and quiet, asking nothing of you but to lean back into it and savor the moment. Outside it began to rain. Morning or night I love the rain, so I opened the windows in the dining room to invite the smells and sounds inside for a bit, and pulled on a hoodie over my PJ’s to allow me the pleasure of its company.
Adding my usual one teaspoon of sugar and mountain of creamer to my steaming cup of coffee, I settled in my comfy recliner and hit the appropriate buttons on the remote to activate the TV. When we first looked at this house as a possibility for a home, the TV was a bone of contention. The house we always knew would be a fit, but would the TV fit in the house? 55″ of crisp clear LCD technology capable of retrieving 500+ channels. My other half’s youngest child. Offering up close and personal access to soccer, football, baseball and whatever else of a competitive nature claims air time. In his mind a deal breaker if the house wasn’t enough house to handle it. The living room, about one quarter of the size of the one in our former home, was designed to allow the light and scenery in, furniture not so much. After much deliberation we settled on how to arrange it attractively but as far as I could see the TV would either have to be suspended from the ceiling or actually adhered to it. Moving and swearing, swearing and moving, we finally situated its at an angle in one corner and there it will remain.
I turned on TMC. I know, I’m an old dog. For me old movies are the best. Outdated possibly, but some like The Awful Truth with Cary Grant and Irene Dunne which was in mid stride, still make me giggle as if viewing the footage for the first time. I could watch Cary Grant on screen forever and never tire of doing so. They were epic often, huge and overdone, but that was their charm. Actresses and actors back in the heyday of Hollywood were bigger than life delivering memorable performances, in an over the top way. Judy Garland as Dorothy, Charlton Heston as Ben Hur, Audrey Hepburn as free spirit Holly Golightly and Gregory Peck as Atticus Finch in Harper Lee’s masterpiece.
Squeezing the last drop out of the movie, although knowing the end by heart, I switched on the news to check the weather. Anything beats the news lately. Every broadcast seems to include a recent multiple shooting or weather disaster. So many shootings. It makes me wonder if all the publicity given these incidents doesn’t provide a sort of training video for those people living on the precipice of reason. Scary stuff. The anchor went on to speak of an eight month pregnant woman from California (naturally) who is lifting weights. Good old Californians, if we’re not toning our bodies, tanning, or getting a face lift we’re not having a good day. Lifting weights at eight months along. At eight months I could barely lift the donuts to my mouth. The heaviest thing I pressed at that juncture in my pregnancy were my husband’s dress shirts. Crazy.
From there they went on to cover all the usual uplifting subjects, rising gas prices, lack of healthcare, sagging economy, glitch in the employment checks, overseas turmoil. In an effort to hold my middle of night mood, I switched the channel. I decided after watching the news team, news anchor or reporter would never be my forte. Shoving a microphone in the face of someone fully immersed in the worst day of their life and asking something totally inane like, “how does it feel to have watched your home slide down the side of a mountain and into the ocean?” would not work for me. It’s amazing any of them live past thirty.
Cops, ah yes, I like Cops. It interests me the totally stupid things some of these criminals do. Of the police reality shows, in particular I like to watch Bait Car. These guys or ladies hop into an expensive unlocked car abandoned with one door open and the keys in the lock and never seem to wonder at their dumb luck (dumb being the optimum word here) until the police in the unmarked cars lock the doors and shut off the engine. I watched an episode of “World’s Dumbest Crooks” a while ago. It showed a man attempting to break into an electronics store. Unable to break the Plexiglas windows with a baseball bat he threw a heavy rock at it. Being plexiglass it threw the rock right back at him knocking him cold as a wedge and setting off the alarm. Some people need to be locked up not only for our protection but for their own.
So there’s my night in a capsule. Hope you haven’t nodded off. Filled the crockpot with baby back ribs and tried a recipe given to me at a pot luck back in the restaurant days. Lots of ingredients but worth the trouble. Finger licking good for sure.
Melt in Your Mouth Crockpot Baby Back Ribs
1 rack baby back ribs
1/2 cup butter
1 Tbsp. sesame oil
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup ketchup
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
3 Tbsp. brown sugar
1 Tbsp. Molasses
1 Tbsp. Maple Syrup
1 tsp. chili sauce
1 Tbsp. soy sauce
1/2 Tsp. chili powder
2 Tbsp. saki (sherry can be substituted)
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
Heat butter and sesame oil in medium saucepan. Add onion and cook for 5 mins. Add garlic and cook for 1 min. Add remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cook 8-10 mins. until thickened. Allow to cool slightly.
Spray bottom of 6 quart crockpot. Wash ribs and pat dry. Cut into three pieces (scissors are easiest). Season with salt and pepper as desired. Place one piece in bottom of cooker. Cover with 1/3 of the sauce. Repeat with other two pieces.
Cook on low for 8 hours. Remove and finish under broiler or on barbecue if desired.