Thursday, January 14, 2010
Has everybody seen Food inc? “Food, Inc. (is a documentary, that) exposes America's industrialized food system and its effect on our environment, health, economy and workers' rights. “ If you haven’t seen it please see do. The movie is available on Netflix, On Cable TV, in libraries, as well as being shown at local community centers and mother’s groups. Every American and especially every mom needs to know the truth about what we are actually feeding our families, and who suffers the consequence.
I saw the movie with friends at our local YMCA and we are all freaked out. I had no idea that the food sold in my local grocery store was so unnatural filthy and chemically/genetically altered. I tried my best to follow the rules of shopping around the walls of the store, staying away from the middle aisles with the over processed crappy foods. I always thought that if I bought fresh fruits, vegetables, and lean meats that I was providing healthy foods for my family. Now that I know what useless trash Supermarket food really is I might as well have been feeding my family Fritos, Kool Aid, sugar cereals, and cheese in a can. If you are going to serve junky foods you night as well make your kids happy. Think of the dinner table fights that I could have avoided.
Ignorance is bliss. Now that I know how unhealthy and dangerous our conventional American food is, especially the meat, I have to make changes. I have to cut out the mommy doesn’t want to cook dinner tonight dinners, sadly no more McDonalds, delivery pizza, or Chinese. I also have had to say goodbye to my frozen dinner friends; chicken nuggets, meatballs, and fish sticks. I can let these foods go, but the one staple that my kids can’t live without is the infamous hot dog.
Yes I tried meatless hot dogs a few years ago. They are oddly textured tubes that taste like spicy dirty dish water. My then much younger kids gagged and my husband revolted. I vowed to him that I would never buy soy dogs again. Now I am on the hunt for organic hot dogs. Is that an oxymoron? I went to Stop and Shop today, one of our local grocery chains. I didn’t find any organic hot dogs. I did find uncured, dogs that claimed to have no antibiotics, hormones, or crap. I almost did pay $6.00 for a pack of 6 hot dogs, but then I realized that they weren’t organic. After seeing how much disgusting stuff that regular meat goes through I am sure that I never ever want to ever know what actually goes into “healthy” hot dogs. If they are certified organic I still never want to see them being made, but I can hopefully be sure that they are safe. Of course if I ever do find them I will have to pay $10.00 for six and then the kids will refuse to eat them. I know. Where are the Fritos?
Monday, January 11, 2010
I love the Fox show Glee. How can I not? I was a tortured high school geek who spent the weekends with my gay dad. The other kids went to Red Sox games with their dad. I went to Art-Houses in Cambridge to watch Judy Garland movie marathons. I grew up watching musicals, and of course the theatre. Looking back I can’t believe that my father wasted so much money buying me and my sister tickets to countless operas, musicals, plays, and the ballet.
As a kid I loved to act, sing, and make people laugh. I especially loved to sing. I sang in the bath tub, my bed room, the empty living room. I used to pretend that our living room was my theatre. The Persian rug was my stage, the three front windows were the audience and the drapes where the stage curtains. I would sing into my hairbrush pretending that my red flannel nightgown was a sparkling glamorous dress. I would start to sing and be transformed from a fat geeky loser into a diva. I could be Judy Garland, or Barbara Streisand, Julie Andrews, or even Natalie Wood, and Audrey Hepburn. As a kid I didn’t know about lip-syncing. The simple act of singing would fill my empty heart with glee. The elation I felt belting out these beautiful songs, sometimes I would sing with the record, or tape, and other times simply sing acapella. The method never mattered. There was nothing that I loved more than to sing…alone. I never let anyone hear me sing. Singing was my private pleasure.
Then in elementary school I auditioned for the lead in the big show and people realized that I had a great talent. I won the female lead and no one ever teased me again. Yeah so this isn’t an afterschool special. This is about my actual life, my sucky sad pathetic high school melodramatic high school life. I had zits, big hair, 80’s fashions, and such low self esteem that I never let any teachers hear me sing. I sang in the chorus, but did my best to blend in. People tortured me for sport; I didn’t want to do anything else to put a target on my back. As I got older I started singing for and with friends. I was recognized in small circles for my vocal talents. High School musicals came and went and I never had the guts to try out. I never had the guts to even seriously consider trying out. The very idea made me nauseated. After all of these years this is my greatest regret. I never tried out. Not in elementary, middle or high school. Not even in college when I had a slew of musical theatre friends. I’d belt it out with them back at the dorm, but I never had the guts to sing on stage.
That’s why I love the show Glee! Glee is bringing musical theatre to the masses. Perhaps the show can motivate kids to come out of the shower and have the courage to admit that they can sing. That they love to sing, that good singing is as satisfying as good sex. My name is Lydia and I love to sing!
Okay so I have promised myself that I am going to record myself singing and put it on this blog. But I need time to prepare. Just the idea is giving my goose bumps and making my stomach queasy.
Sunday rolls around and I am in the kitchen feeling like Julia Child flinging olive oil and love all over my chicken. Then Bon Appetite! I pop my masterpiece in the oven and in about an hour my house smells of poultry paradise. I bake my organic squash, boil my potatoes; I am juggling herbs and spinning spices. I am slicing perfectly juicy chicken and I must admit that I am kind of shocked. I have a reputation as a dreadful cook. Not dreadful as in I can’t cook; more like I am so unorganized that following a recipe is beyond challenging. But not today, I shock myself by preparing a beautiful healthy meal for my family. I make each one of my darlings a lovely plate with a side order of love and place them on the table. Then I sit back and wait for the applause…
“Momma? What smells like barf?” Dylan asks. I glare at him.
“It’s this. What is this?” He asks with a worried look on his face.
“That’s squash. “ I say trying not to sneer. “Try it. You’ll like it.” As he opens his mouth to respond I shove a spoonful of squash in his mouth. He makes a sour face and runs to the sink to spit it out. I try not to take his revulsion personally. I mean the kid’s favorite food comes in a box. What does he know of good food?
I refuse to let my kid’s rogue pallets ruin my quest for healthy yummy food. Right after dinner I am using the leftover chicken to make chicken soup for tomorrow night. I cut up carrots, celery, and onions, and put them in a pot on low with a little chicken broth. Then I run into the living room to quickly check my Facebook. About two or fifteen minutes later Dave comes down stairs and flips on the TV to catch the end of a football game. Just as the Cardinal’s clinch the NFC championship he turns to me and says.
“Honey are you cooking something?” I jump up and run screaming into the kitchen. Smoke is billowing out of the soup pot. I slide on something wet yet some how manage to still grab hold of the smoking pot and remove it from the stove. I look at my black bottomed pot with orange and green spots and then down at my wet socks. Did the kids spill juice in here again? I am praying that this is lemonade, but I know that we are all out. Damn dog! I start screaming and ripping my socks off while still holding the pot. Dave runs in and I see his concerned face and I burst out laughing. I am a dreadful cook with pee soaked socks, but my life is never boring. I can’t stop laughing.