Category Archives: Opinion

Opinion—Cast iron cooking

Opinion

When I was living with my wise old grandmother in Kingsville TX from December 1965 to May 1973, she forced me to do child labor, things like hanging the laundry outside, bringing the laundry in, clearing the table, cleaning the sinks and bathtubs, vacuuming, mopping, cleaning the windows…….. oh, the list goes on……… that dastardly woman!

The one thing I hated the most, though, was washing and drying the dishes, especially her huge monster gigantic really really big and heavy cast iron frying pan. I promised myself that I would never have a frying pan like that.

Fortunately, Teflon came along about the same time, and I have been a Teflon fan all my life…. until last month when I bought a huge monster gigantic really really big and heavy cast iron frying pan.

I bought it because our new Samsung range that we bought in July 2017 came with a cast iron griddle. Finest thing ever for cooking pancakes and bacon. That encouraged me to think about a cast iron frying pan. They are expensive, more expensive than Zoey the Cool Cat’s prescription food.

However, while I was at my favorite outlet mall, Viejas Outlets, I went into Kitchen Collection and found a huge monster gigantic really really big and heavy cast iron frying pan for just $38. It came home with me.

Best. frying pan. ever.

Cast iron frying pan

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post

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Opinion—See & hear & do it now

Opinion

Double R CreationsWith the start of my new business, Double R Creations, I’m in the process of combining all of my billions and billions and billions of pictures onto one huge 8TB SSD and then finally deleting the pictures that I won’t use—pictures that are too small, grainy pictures from decades ago, home inspection pictures, and stuff that I have saved for whatever reason. As my wise old grandmother told me in 1966, “If you haven’t used it in the past six months, get rid of it.” Her version of get rid of it was to have one of her famous semi-annual garage sales.

Here is something that I saved on August 26, 2003, and just re-discovered. I really like it.

Live It Up, by Ann Wells (Los Angeles Times)

My brother-in-law opened the bottom drawer of my sister’s bureau and lifted out a tissue-wrapped package. “This,” he said, “is not a slip. This is lingerie.” He discarded the tissue and handed me the slip. It was exquisite; silk, handmade and trimmed with a cobweb of lace. The price tag with an astronomical figure on it was still attached. “Jan bought this the first time we went to New York, at least 8 or 9 years ago. She never wore it. She was saving it for a special occasion. Well, I guess this is the occasion.” He took the slip from me and put it on the bed with the other clothes we were taking to the mortician. His hands lingered on the soft material for a moment, then he slammed the drawer shut and turned to me. “Don’t ever save anything for a special occasion. Every day you’re alive is a special occasion.”

I remembered those words through the funeral and the days that followed when I helped him and my niece attend to all the sad chores that follow an unexpected death. I thought about them on the plane returning to California from the Midwestern town where my sister’s family lives. I thought about all the things that she hadn’t seen or heard or done. I thought about the things that she had done without realizing that they were special. I’m still thinking about his words, and they’ve changed my life. I’m reading more and dusting less. I’m sitting on the deck and admiring the view without fussing about the weeds in the garden. I’m spending more time with my family and friends, and less time in committee meetings.

Whenever possible, life should be a pattern of experience to savor, not endure. I’m trying to recognize these moments now and cherish them. I’m not “saving” anything; we use our good china and crystal for every special event—such as losing a pound, getting the sink Cameliaunstopped, the first camellia blossom. I wear my good blazer to the market if I feel like it. My theory is if I look prosperous, I can shell out $28.49 for one small bag of groceries without wincing. I’m not saving my good perfume for special parties; clerks in hardware stores and tellers in banks have noses that function as well as my party-going friends. “Someday” and “one of these days” are losing their grip on my vocabulary. If it’s worth seeing or hearing or doing, I want to see and hear and do it now.

I’m not sure what my sister would have done had she known that she wouldn’t be here for the tomorrow we all take for granted. I think she would have called family members and a few close friends. She might have called a few former friends to apologize and mend fences for past squabbles. I like to think she would have gone out for a Chinese dinner, her favorite food. I’m guessing—I’ll never know. It’s those little things left undone that would make me angry if I knew that my hours were limited. Angry because I put off seeing good friends whom I was going to get in touch with—someday. Angry because I hadn’t written certain letters that I intended to write—one of these days. Angry and sorry that I didn’t tell my husband and daughter often enough how much I truly love them. I’m trying very hard not to put off, hold back, or save anything that would add laughter and luster to our lives. And every morning when I open my eyes, I tell myself that it is special. Every day, every minute, every breath truly is special.

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post

Halloween offerings at Home Depot, El Cajon, California

Opinion—Little kids should still be in bed

Opinion

I like to go to Home Depot early in the morning since they open at 6:00, especially as the days get shorter because, in the early morning darkness, I can’t do too much outside.

Yesterday, August 27, 2018, Home Depot had put up their Halloween offerings. I snapped three pictures:

Halloween offerings at Home Depot, El Cajon, California

Halloween offerings at Home Depot, El Cajon, California

Halloween offerings at Home Depot, El Cajon, California

A little boy, probably all of six or seven, was standing in front of the skeleton dogs/tigers/whatever they were, pointing at them, and crying. He looked absolutely terrified. Meanwhile, daddy was ignoring the little guy while trying to find the right battery package on the hanging display nearby.

Notwithstanding the fact that Halloween is TWO FULL MONTHS and 3 days away—

hey! at least they don’t have Christmas displays up yet!—

shouldn’t little kids still be in bed at 6:00 a.m.? Asking for a friend.

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post

Opinion—“Hunger Games” might not be too far behind

Opinion

Until this morning, it had been over a month since I had been to my local Home Depot. I have been shopping at this Home Depot for 19 years and had come to know just about everyone working there. This morning, I did not see a single person I knew. It appeared that they have had virtually 100% turnover. Why? This:

Home Depot self-checkout, El Cajon, California

100% turnover because of 100% self-checkout, even at the commercial lanes.

Instead of cashiers, there were a bunch of high schoolers standing around watching the self-checkout lanes, and one security guard watching over everything.

I’m sure the people who had been cashiers for the last 20 years didn’t want to stand around watching the self-checkout lanes for $11.50 minimum wage. High schoolers, on the other hand, especially those getting their first job, are only too happy to do that.

I’m pretty sure the rich corporations are only getting richer by doing away with annual salaries. And with Twitler and his ilk doing away with health insurance, Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid, and keeping salaries low for those who do get to work, “Hunger Games” might not be too far behind.

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post

Opinion—God’s involved in more than just sports

Opinion

In Jesus name I playThroughout my life I have always been amazed when sports stars thank God and the Lord Jesus Christ for leading them, or their teams, to victory.

With all the dying, death, and destruction in the world, and this God has time to sit back and watch sports. Not just one sport, though. Every single sport. At every level. In every country.

Note that God goes by different names in some countries. Tower of Babel and all that.

This touchdown's for you, Jesus!

Now I find out that God (and, presumably, the Lord Jesus Christ) is involved in more things than just sports.

Texas Tech University won the 2017 National Meat Judging Championship. I’m quite familiar with meat judging and the national championship because one of my rampmates (Jimmy Mazurkiewicz) during my second semester at Texas A&M University in 1974 was on Texas A&M’s national championship meat judging teams. So I proceeded to read the announcement from Texas Tech University about their 2017 national championship. I quit reading when I came to this paragraph:

“The Meat Judging Team was able to achieve perfection because they humbled themselves and trusted God and not themselves,” said Mark Miller, coach of the Meat Judging Team and the San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo Distinguished Chair in Meat Sciences. “They had great faith in him to deliver the victories. All of the glory goes to their faith and trust in God for this impossible perfect national championship season.”

That doesn’t say too much about Coach Mark Miller’s skills or abilities.

And just think of all those students from so many other universities who now might believe any one of the following:

  1. God doesn’t listen to them.
  2. God doesn’t answer prayers.
  3. God answers prayers but this time said, “Fuck you.”
  4. God doesn’t exist.
  5. I can’t believe someone else prayed more than me.
  6. I can’t believe I’m not God’s favorite.

Imagine if God were to put an end to human and animal suffering; to put an end to hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, wildfires, heat waves, blizzards, auto accidents, gun deaths…. Little things like that. Instead, he’s sitting back watching sports and rooting on his favorite players….. S.M.D.H.

Religion. The bane of humanity.

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post

Opinion—They lost me

Opinion

I’m not a fan of wild west shootouts unless they are in the movies, so when I saw this notice on the window of a restaurant in Rancho Cucamonga where I had planned on eating lunch yesterday, I went elsewhere.

Firearms welcome

Wicked Cow in Rancho Cucamonga, California

My thinking on this matter is because, as many law enforcement officials have told us, when police arrive they don’t know who’s the bad guy and who’s the good guy. They have to assume that anyone waving a gun around and shooting is the bad the guy. Perhaps if concealed carry AND open carry actually required training and insurance at a minimum, kind of like a driver’s license, I might have greater confidence in the people who feel a need to eat lunch or shop at Walmart with guns proudly displayed. Just doesn’t make sense to me. And as we have seen too often, these people (I’m painting with a broad stroke here but as my wise old gramdmother said, “A few bad apples do, indeed, ruin the whole bunch.”) don’t understand what “protection” means. To wit:

Woman kills homeless man who asked her to move her Porsche SUV

Woman pulls gun at Walmart over last notebook

I grew up with guns and hunting, both let’s-kill-something-because-we-can-hunting and we-need-food hunting. My dad killed himself with a handgun when I was six. Maybe he would have killed himself anyway with a knife, razor blade, car exhaust fumes…. I don’t know. But the fact is that he killed himself with a handgun. I’m biased. I freely admit that.

As my wise old grandmother also said, “When it’s your time to go, it’s your time to go.”

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post