Department Of This Is Way Too Existential Of A Question To Tackle Before Breakfast
Sub-Department of Could This Be Another Variant of Male Directile Dysfunction?
Dateline: Sunday morning, circa 7 am; Bay Area town, visiting friends who live in a hilly neighborhood with many winding roads. MH and I are out for a morning walk. A car slowly approaches us from behind, and slows even more but doesn’t quite stop, as the driver, an older Asian man, rolls down the window and in lightly accented English, asks, “Do you know where I am going?”
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Department Of I’m A Middle Child, But Sometimes You Gotta Choose Sides
“There’s nothing in the middle of the road
but a yellow stripe and dead armadillos.”
( Jim Hightower, Texan, progressive political activist, former Agriculture commissioner,
author of There’s Nothing in the Middle of the Road but Yellow Stripes and Dead Armadillos: A Work of Political Subversion  )
Time to revisit a brief but wise meditation of the myth of the morality of middle ground. Excerpts from There’s Nothing Virtuous About Finding Common Ground, by Tayari Jones, Emory university professor and author (my emphases ) :
“…we are in a political moment where we find ourselves on opposite sides of what feels like an unbreachable gulf. I find myself annoyed by the hand-wringing about how we need to find common ground. People ask how might we “meet in the middle,” as though this represents a safe, neutral and civilized space. This American fetishization of the moral middle is a misguided and dangerous cultural impulse.”
The middle is a point equidistant from two poles. That’s it. There is nothing inherently virtuous about being neither here nor there. Buried in this is a false equivalency of ideas, what you might call the “good people on both sides” phenomenon….”
The search for the middle is rooted in conflict avoidance and denial. For many Americans it is painful to understand that there are citizens of our community who are deeply racist, sexist, homophobic and xenophobic….
The headlines that lament a “divided” America suggest that the fact that we can’t all get along is more significant
than the issues over which we are sparring.
Is the importance of our performance of national unity more significant than our core values? Is it more meaningful that we understand why some of us support the separation of children from their parents, or is it more crucial that we support the reunification of these families?… Should we agree to disagree about the murder and dismemberment of a journalist?
The romance of the middle can exist when one’s empathy is aligned with the people expressing opinions on policy or culture rather than with those who will be affected by these policies or cultural norms. Buried in this argument, whether we realize it or not, is the fact that these policies change people’s lives.
Compromise is not valuable in its own right,
and justice seldom dwells in the middle.”
Check out this essay in its entirety, originally published last year (11-5-18) in Time.
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Department of Epicurean Excursion 
Featuring this week’s cookbook, author and recipe:
The Minimalists Cooks at Home, by Mark Bittman
Recipe: Piquillo Peppers with Shitakes and Spinach
☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼
Recipe Rating Refresher 
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Department Of Explaining Blog Brevity
Moiself is recently returned from a trip to Bay Area, to help longtime friends memorialize their 27-year-old son, who died unexpectedly in August. MH and I also visited friends who graciously offered us accommodations during the trip — the same dear friends whose 27-year-old daughter was murdered in January.
The lingering trauma of losing a child of any age, and especially in violent circumstances, cannot be underestimated…nor fully comprehended.
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May you be patient with those of us trying to comprehend the incomprehensible;
May you be wary of “meeting in the middle”;
May you continue to remember to love ‘em while you’ve got ‘em;
…and may the hijinks ensue.
Thanks for stopping by. Au Vendredi!
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 Which is snort-laughing funny; moiself recommends y’all read it.
 A recurring feature of this blog, since week 2 of April 2019, wherein moiself decided that moiself would go through my cookbooks alphabetically and, one day a week, cook (at least) one recipe from one book.
* Two Thumbs up: Liked it
* Two Hamster Thumbs Up : Loved it
* Thumbs Down – Not even Kevin, a character from The Office who would eat anything, would like this.
* Twiddling Thumbs: I was, in due course, bored by this recipe.
* Thumbscrew: It was torture to make this recipe.
* All Thumbs: Good recipe, but I somehow mucked it up .
* Thumby McThumb Face: This recipe was fun to make.
* Thumbing my nose: Yeah, I made this recipe, but I did not respect it.