Department Of Thoughts That Wake Me Up At 4 AM.
“Argyle is such an all-encompassing name. It’s not, my-gyle; not your-gyle, it’s our-gyle.
Can it get more inclusive? And in these divisive times,
could an item of inclusive hosiery unite us in…”
* * *
Department Of Feeling Smug Should Feel Better Than This
Dateline: yesterday, circa 7 am; listening to the latest Freakonomics podcast on another aspect of the COVID-19 pandemic (“What Happens When Everyone Stays Home to Eat,” 4-8-20). I was bemused when, early on in the episode, a “food economist” spoke of his concern to find (what he considered to be) food “staples” in short supply:
“So about a week ago, I had planned to go to the store early in the morning. I got up about 7:30 a.m. I thought, ‘I’ll beat the crowds.’ And I got to the store and was, frankly, shocked. There was basically no meat left. And your major staple foods — bread, pasta, rice — were largely picked over.”
Moiself thought about* my* trips to the store recently, which have been just fine (other than looking like someone getting ready to knock off a 7-11, what with my mask and gloves). There’s one type of people not panicking and doing just fine thank you, because our staples are those which provide plant-based, whole foods nutrition.
“A whole-food, plant-based diet is based on the following principles:
Whole food describes natural foods that are not heavily processed. That means whole, unrefined, or minimally refined ingredients.
Plant-based means food that comes from plants and doesn’t include animal ingredients such as meat, milk, eggs, or honey.
A whole-food, plant-based diet lets you meet your nutritional needs by focusing on natural, minimally-processed plant foods.”
(Forks Over Knives)
My basket is full at my weekly shopping trip – full of fresh fruits and vegetables – and I’ve yet to encounter or hear of shortages in that department.  Like most people who’ve adopted plant-based eating, I know how to turn all of these minimally-processed, non-industrialized, “source foods” into tasty, nutritious meals. This is not bragging; this is reality-stating.
So, maybe this is the time to consider making some gradual – or drastic – changes in your life in this matter? And, unless you’ve stuck your head under a rock (or in a bucket of KFC wings) the past twenty years when it comes to reading about the science of nutritional health, your cholesterol, blood pressure and blood sugar (and waistline) measurements will thank you. Here are some references to help you get started:
And that is the end of this particular polemic. 
We now return you to our regular inanity programming.
* * *
Department Of Silly Quote Of The Week From A So-called “Expert”
This inanity – or just a misstatement? – comes via the previously-mentioned podcast. The podcast host was talking about the effects of the pandemic vis-à-vis income inequality:
As in every crisis, there are some protections, some forms of insulation. Money is one. If you have enough money, adjusting to the pandemic is easier. You may have to wait in line a bit longer at the grocery store. You may not be able to buy everything you’re used to getting. Still, you’re going to eat. If you don’t have enough money, even feeding your family becomes a big challenge. The bureaucratic phrase for this is “food insecurity.”
Then we have this, from a “development and relations director” at Midwest Food Bank, who was being interviewed about the concept of food insecurity :
“There’s been a moment when we’ve all experienced food insecurity in the last week; the moment when we went to the grocery store and we were looking for pasta, or canned beef, or even toilet paper, and we saw the shelf was empty…. That pit in our stomach – that is food insecurity.”
Wait a minute – you’re talking about food insecurity, and she adds TP to the mix (and “canned beef,” yikes)? Sure, a lot of people are currently obsessed with/hoarding toilet paper, but I think that speaks to a different kind of insecurity.
* * *
Department Of Not-So-Funny In Retrospect
Dateline: A Monday or Wednesday, 8:45 am-ish, approximately three months ago. A young-ish woman across the studio in my yoga class struck up a conversation with me before class, as we yogis (yoga students) were setting up our mats. My voice reminded me of a friend of hers, she said. She picked up on a conversation two other students was having, about a sick relative unable to travel, and Youngish Yogi told a story about her husband, who had been home sick for a while but had recovered.
His illness started when he was travelling – I can’t recall the name of the country she said he’d been to, but it was somewhere in east Asia. The airport where YY’s hubby was to catch his return flight had thermal scanners placed on either side of the hallways just past the airport’s security screening stations. Passengers, most without knowing they were doing so, walked by the scanners as they strolled down the airport hallways on their way to their flights’ gates. The scanners sounded an alarm when a person with a fever walked by, and that person would be given further screening by an airport employee. People with fevers and other symptoms of illness were not allowed to board their flights. 
YY’s husband was running a fever and was afraid that the scanner would catch him. According to YY, he figured that if he sprinted down the hallway past the scanners, as if he were late for his flight, the devices might not have enough time to register his fever…which is what happened. She said he was miserable on the flight home and then for many days after, but that’s why he did what he did: he wanted to be home to recuperate, and not be stuck in a foreign city and have to seek medical care there. “He was feeling so bad, and was so happy to be home,” she said.
Other yogis softly giggled in amusement at her story, and then at my response, when I cracked, “Yeah, but were *you* happy to have him back, in his condition?”
I continued to project geniality, but ventured, “Uh, gee, I sure wouldn’t have wanted to be the person sitting next to him on the airplane…”
Of course, we all had no inkling of COVID-19 at the time. I just remember thinking how personable and nice YY seemed, and what a dumbass, selfish – and dangerous – thing her husband did.
* * *
Department Of Puns So Bad Even I Couldn’t Stick With It
Musician name puns; that should be a thing, right? Apropos of nothing, I came up with five before I disgusted even moiself :
Instructions given to the “Heart of Gold” singer/songwriter as he was
about to be knighted by the Queen:
Jazz pianist arrested for destroying Liberace’s $50,000 candelabra:
Texas rock trio simultaneously beset by hay fever attacks:
Legendary heavy metal band reunites and hires
“The Flintstones” dad to be their drummer:
Fleetwood Mac singer/songwriter turns down request by New York b-ballers
to perform the national anthem at their next home game:
Stevie Nix Knicks
* * *
Department Of Yet Another Mystery Of The Universe
That would be the…uh, point…of this yard “decoration” pictured at the end of this post. Is it to represent, attract, or repel other deer? Is it a talisman of some sort? I’m trying to think of a culture in which there is an equivalent of a scarecrow, only in the form of a deer. And what kind of creature would a deer scare away or ward off, other than perhaps a neurotic Pomeranian or other yippee-dog? 
I know the knee-jerk/go-to answer is, “Because they (the home residents) think it looks nice,” but, really?
BTW, the street where this Deer Sentinel house is located is the same street that was the subject of the Facebook post I made on April 2:
Best. Morning. Walk. Ever.
Dateline: this morning, circa 6:45 am. See that white thing in the tree branches? As I got closer I realized it was what I thought it might be: a person, facing east, wrapped in a blanket, sitting amidst the blossoms of a tree.
From a social-distance safe length away (the middle of the street), I called out to her: “Okay; there’s got to be a story behind this.”
The blanket-wrapped young (?) woman turned her head to look down at me, and smiled. From my viewpoint, she could have been in her mid-twenties to late forties. “This corona virus-isolation thing’s got my schedule messed up,” she said. “I was awake early, and decided I wanted to see the sun rise.”
(Looking around her street, I could see that the best view of the rising sun might be up in a tree, so she could see past the roof-line of neighboring houses).
“What the heck,” she added. “It’s better than watching another episode of ‘Friends.’ “
I told her I agreed, and added, “Carry on.”
Deer Sentinel House and Sheet-Woman-in-Tree House are right next door to one another, in what is an otherwise average-seeming cul-de-sac. I am not fooled. There’s something going on there; some alien wormhole travel vortex or other, weird phenomenon. Perhaps I should contact SETI about this?
* * *
Pun For the Day
All the toilets in New York’s police stations have been stolen. As of now,
it appears the police have nothing to go on.
* * *
Department of The Corona Virus Playlist
The Ramones Edition
No, not just a Punk Rock edition. The Ramones are worthy of their own edition.
Moiself has listed some of The Ramones’ song titles which are IMHO, applicable to our social-isolating, transmission–paranoid, COVID-19 times, and which, in small groupings, imply a related story.
All’s Quiet On The Eastern Front
You Should Have Never Opened That Door
You Sound Like You’re Sick
I Can’t Give You Anything
I Don’t Care
Can’t Control Myself
Do You Wanna Dance?
Bop Til You Drop
Don’t Come Close
You Are Gonna Kill That Girl
Here Today, Gone Tomorrow
Death Of Me
Bye Bye Baby
Gimme Gimme Shock Treatment
High Risk Insurance
I Don’t Wanna Go Down To The Basement
I Don’t Wanna Walk Around With You
I Don’t Want To Live This Life Anymore
I Just Want To Have Something To Do
I Wanna Be Sedated
I Wanna Live
It’s A Long Way Back
It’s Gonna Be Alright
Needles And Pins
Sitting In My Room
Take It As It Comes
Tomorrow She Goes Away
Too Tough To Die
Why Is It Always This Way
* * *
Department Of The Things You Learn During Social Isolation
When You Have Time To Stream The Series You’re Supposed To Watch
Because It’s Critically Acclaimed
So, Phoebe Waller-Bridge, one of the creative minds (writer; executive producer) behind the disturbingly compelling Killing Eve, is the same person writing and starring in the reassuringly I-SO-can-cross-this-off-my-list, Fleabag?
Moiself was only mildly disappointed, and not really surprised, by how non-interested MH and I turned out to be, after watching 1.3 episodes of Fleabag. Ten minutes into the second episode we exchanged life-is-short glances and almost tripped over each other reaching for the remote. MH heartily agreed when moiself announced, “I don’t care about *any* of these characters.”
I have learned that when a show (or play, movie, book, next-door neighbor, new in-law….) when a show markets its protagonist as “free-spirited, quirky, sexually active, but angry and confused,” that too often translates as “aimless, self-absorbed, vulgar,” and – worst of all, for anything marketing itself as comedy/drama – “tediously uninteresting.”
* * *
Department of Epicurean Excursion Evolution 
Featuring this week’s Theme Day – Wednesday Wraps – and recipe:
* Lentil-rice Koftas in butter lettuce wraps with Sumac Tahini Sauce (chaperoned by roasted butternut squash, lemon-garlic sautéed greens, homemade whole wheat naan)
☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼ ☼
Recipe Rating Refresher 
* * *
May you be compelled by forces beyond your control to place a dozen
plastic flamingos in your yard before you would add one “realistic” deer
or other wildlife ornamentation;
May you wake up at 3 am with a bad pun in your brain and think to yourself,
“So, this is what she feels like, poor thing;”
May you never feel compelled to embrace the critical darling you in fact disdain;
…and may the hijinks ensue.
Thanks for stopping by. Au Vendredi!
* * *
 Although you certainly can find a lot of whole foods at Whole Foods.
 if the supply chain, farmers getting their fresh produce to market – is interrupted for a prolonged period of time, then we’re all really in trouble.
 For the moment. You know there will be more…eventually….
 I don’t know what the parameters were; i.e., what was considered a further-screen-worthy body temp.
 In that case, the lawn ornament would be well worth whatever they paid for it.
 Boring, Oregon, is a small town (population ~ 2000) twelve miles east of Portland.
* Abject Failure: I’ll make a canned wieners & Spaghetti-Os gelatin mold before I make this recipe again.
* Tolerable: if you have the proper…attitude.
* Yep: why, sure, I’d share this with my cat.
* Now you’re talkin’: Abby the support Avocado ® approves.
* Yummers: So good, it merits The Purple Tortilla Chip Of Exclamation ® !