Cherry Saturday, October 12, 2019

You know, sometimes I look up the holidays and there’s just nothing there I want to talk about. Like today is Old Farmers Day. I have nothing against old farmers, I come from farm country and one of the best men I’ve ever known was my father-in-law who farmed part time with his mail route. Lovely man who died way too young. It’s also arthritis day, but I don’t feel like dwelling on something that keeps my friends in so much pain (and I know I’m due any time). There were good days we missed. Friday the 11th was Egg Day. I could sing songs to the beauty of eggs. It was also Coming Out Day, which I am also all for; nobody should be in the closet about anything. And the day before that was Cake Decorating Day and Handbag Day, both of which would have had wonderful visuals. (It was also Porridge Day and Hug a Drummer Day, and in my experience, both of these are Bad Idea Days.).

We’re just going to have to go with Old Farmers. Hug one if you can find one.

49 thoughts on “Cherry Saturday, October 12, 2019

  1. Porridge is a bad idea? Wash your mouth out! Porridge is a gift! With fruit or nuts or spices or just brown sugar and cream. There’s not a single bad thing about porridge.

    I want to speak in defense of old farmers too, rural farmer suicide rates, failing rural communities etc, but after the carbon zero conference I mentioned earlier, it’s still too heavy. But I’ll argue porridge with all comers. #porridgeloversunite

    1. No, no, I’m in favor of old farmers.

      Porridge is just too . . . porridgey. I think it’s the texture. I’m not good with thick creamy soups, either. Oatmeal, blah.

      Surprisingly enough, I’m fine with mashed potatoes and gravy, but that’s because of the gravy.

      1. I’m with Jenny on the porridge. Both it and oatmeal have just the wrong texture and should not be eaten.

        I do support old farmers. I have & had lots of uncles who were dairy farmers.

      2. I will speak up for mashed potatoes and gravy! I can’t visit a Golden Corral without at least one side of MP&G, specifically the dark beefy gravy – I no longer remember the flavor of the lighter gravy. Chicken, perhaps? The other mushes? Bah. Humbug. Though I do occasionally dip a spoon in applesauce.

    2. I can’t eat oatmeal at restaurants (i.e., in hotels or the place where I most often get stuck with it — hospitals, when I’m doing a clinical trial), because the texture gets all mushy and weird and makes me gag, but making it at home, I can cook it more briefly, so it’s more like oatmeal cookies, with distinct flakes of oats and a bit of chew to it. Then I love it.

      So I’m in favor of porridge-y stuff, just not when it’s turned into gluey mush.

      1. Try steel cut oats-they have a lot more texture and are therefore much harder to turn into gluey mush.

        1. Yes, I’m pro-porridge too, but not the gluey stuff. If you use instant oats it’s horrible, but the non-instant ones, just cooked enough, with stewed fruit and milk and yoghurt – yummmm. In fact that’s what I had for breakfast this morning.

  2. Porridge just sounds so Dickensian and dire, like something children are forced to eat as a punishment. I will eat oatmeal, which is essentially the same thing, but only when it’s cold and I want to feel virtuous about my breakfast.
    I much prefer yogurt with honey and nuts. It just fills me up more.

    Maybe it’s a tangent (or is it?) but if you want to read/hear something lovely about an old farmer, I recommend the Storycorps story, “The Saint of Dry Creek” Sorry if the link is ugly.

    The storyteller is an adult gay man who talks about growing up in the 1950s in rural Washington State with his old school farmer father who was very supportive and encouraging in an unexpected way.

      1. Oatmeal is a porridge, but not all porridges are oatmeals. It’s just ground up and mushy stuff. Technically polenta and grits are also porridges, but yes, you’re right they’re often used to refer to same thing. It’s probably is the American in me that dislikes the sound of “porridge.”

        1. I can’t do polenta or grits, either. I tried cheddar cheese polenta once and nope.

          It’s gotta be the texture.

          1. That’s what I thought until I tasted cheese grits with GARLIC in them. The extra dimension of flavor reduced the previously detested texture to a note of contrast.

          2. I can do oatmeal, steelcut, but not grits or polenta. I also don’t like farina, which I had to eat as a child. I do think I’ll give the polenta with chedar and garlic a try, though.

          3. You know, almost anything with cheddar is good, just not that texture. Cheddar on naan, cheddar in potatoes, cheddar melted on top of something chewy, but not cheddar like thick, grainy paste. Bleah.

  3. I daresay there’ll be plenty of old farmers in town – or would’ve been this morning. But I’m resisting their lures and going back to the allotment in a minute. I was rained off at lunchtime by a sharp shower – came back home to rescue my washing. But must excavate my beetroot and parsnips from the bindweed that’s smothering them. Also the fruit bushes.

  4. I’m getting up there and I have a large garden. Does that count? I’m hoping to get out this afternoon and finish putting it to bed for the winter, which means pulling out weeds, covering the raised beds with straw (bought from an old farmer) and planting the garlic and shallots.

    About that arthritis…

  5. My younger self would serve oatmeal with a pat of butter in a well in the center of steaming oatmeal with a sprinkle of brown sugar on top to melt so that it looks like a caramel river and milk (or lt. cream) around the edges. Anything to get the kids to eat it although they didn’t grumble much. Later when we went to Cape Bretton, NS (family farm) my husband’s aunt asked if we wanted porridge one morning and I thought that the word porridge was only used in fairy tales. Who knew! My older working self would make it with a topping of yogurt and honey. I had it almost every day before work and I never gave it a thought because not putting two and two together my cholesterol levels were so good. That is until I retired and I stopped eating oatmeal every day and now I’m on meds for high cholesterol.

    If it was up to a vote I would vote for handbag day. Only because I’m looking for a Fall/Winter handbag.

    On another note I’ve been reading MTT this week and had to read a portion of a chapter three times because I couldn’t picture a four door 1982 Ford Mustang hatchback. So I asked my husband if he ever heard of it. I could see the decades unfolding in his mind as he remembered and he said yes. I also goggled it and it was not a pretty car. It’s not a four door like I thought, the back door was the hatchback opening. My apologies. And I’m becoming more and more invested in Alice. But no so much the screaming. Patience!

    1. This is what happens when you do your research fast.

      Did I say it was four door in the new Alice stuff or in Maybe This Time? Because there is no four door hatchback, I’m pretty sure.
      But 82 Hatchback is great, very funky looking no matter what Ethan says.

        1. The Fit came in such pretty colors and had great storage with the seat folding options. I however went for the Honda Civic coupe – 2 door, manual transmission aka an anti theft device, but sadly a truck & not a hatchback.

        2. I have a Jazz, too. It’s bizarre to me that they renamed it ‘Fit’ in the US. Sounds like it’s liable to go into convulsions. I think technically they call such cars ‘five-door’, the hatch being the fifth.

          (Mine’s red. Both my cars have been red, because they were the ones with good deals. I’d far rather have green or blue; but at least it’s not grey.)

      1. Maybe I should work on my spelling, I googled it not goggled it. I knew I was going to get caught on the four door thing but I typed it anyway. Opening the back door of a car sends a message to me that the car is a four door. But this is a reread for me and I don’t remember getting caught up in something like this. Isn’t it amazing the things you pick up the second time around?

  6. My husband and I were both raised on farms and now- technically- we are old. So I guess if we hug one another that might count. Of course, we live in a city and haven’t been rural in decades so it is a real stretch.

    We have Bob’s thick cut oatmeal 6 days a week, which we love. I have liberated 4 of my glass cigar jars with silver tops and store brown sugar, golden raisins, sliver almonds and dried blueberries in them and I have a silver sugar caster with cinnamon in it. They live on a marble lazy susan on the breakfast room table so each person can put what they want on their oatmeal. We have it with whole milk served in a dark blue fish pitcher that I bought in Nova Scotia as a souvenir. It was only after I returned home that I read the fine print on the pitcher and discovered it was designed in Seattle and manufacturer in China.

    1. My guy when I gave him his hug and explained the rational, said “I doubt many people can find an old farmer these days. And hugging a corporate farm doesn’t sound the same”.

  7. It’s shopping for ‘Thanksgiving on Monday’ for me. Finally having a Thanksgiving family dinner after a few years of going elsewhere. Going to make my mama’s crumb cake b/c I’m thinking of my mom and mom in law a lot lately. Really miss lovely chats with both.

    I knew a few old farmers, good men and women working long hours.

  8. I eat a porridge called Jungle Oats. I add cinnamon, double thick yogurt, honey, chia seeds and a few cashews. It’s more like dessert that breakfast. I eat it at 6am and it keeps me going till 9.45am.

    Today I spent time with my sister-friends who I hadn’t seen since March. So grateful for them.

    1. I would like to observe that among the Arghers who praise mushy breakfast crap, every one of them mentions the many, many things they put on it to make it edible. Nobody just says, “I spoon it right up! Yum!”

      Cinnamon, yogurt, honey, chia seeds, cashews… throw out the porridge and that sounds good. Light cream, heavy cream, butter, fruit… porridge and all that class of foods are fillers, and that includes grits. You don’t eat them alone, you use them to stretch your supplies of foods you like.

      Take grits. I’ve eaten them. The way I’ve eaten them is to mix them with crumbled sausage and some over-easy eggs. There’s nothing you can do with just grits to make them desirable.

          1. I am with you, Gary, even though we eat it all the time. However, my guy has always eaten it, since I first knew him well enough to know what he routinely eats for breakfast. First just Quakers Oats with brown sugar and milk (he has never been a big fan of white, granulated sugar). Then we discovered Bob’s oats, which we buy in 25 pound sacks. Then we discovered the various cuts of Bob’s. At some point pressure was brought to bear and I started to eat oatmeal along with the fanatic. Note: when we got up at different times and did not always breakfast together, something to which I ascribe our being together for almost 50 year, I always had an egg on toast for breakfast, Or back when I weighed in at 135, I had a piece of hobo’s toast which my daddy taught me to make.

  9. The only farmers I know are young enough to be my children and had to take full time (or almost full time) jobs to support their children. Of course, with month old twins in the house, I doubt if much work of any kind is being done these days. Thank God all 4 grandparents are alive and well.

  10. I am one of those who actually do like oatmeal. Not the instant stuff, that’s disgusting, but the old fashioned kind. I add cinnamon for flavor ( it’s also supposed to help regulate blood sugar levels) and a tiny bit of brown sugar along with a serving of whatever fruit I have available, mostly blueberries. I put a small amount of milk in it as well because, milk, it does a body good! 🙂

  11. My father spent summers on his grandparents farm as a child in Germany and when he escaped to the US he went to farm school because his parents got houseparent jobs and he couldn’t live with them. He always called it reform school and my mom only learned it was farm school after a year of marriage. He did actually work as a farmer for a year before he joined the army and went back to fight the Nazis (and eventually served on the war crimes commission and interpreted —against his will—for the defense at the Dachau trials of the people who ran concentration camps—who might have been responsible for the deaths of his grandparents the old farmers.)
    My dad went on to be a botany professor and was the best person and most modest I ever knew. I miss him every day. I would hug him if I could. So yeah, let’s celebrate old farmers day.

    Also I’m celebrating the nationals. And booing the Yankees. Is there a hate the Yankees day? Because I’m in. It is my contribution to irrational strong negative prejudices.

  12. I spoon it right up! Yum!

    Seriously–a scoop of steel cut oats, 4 scoops of water, microwave at 50% for 10 minutes, breakfast is served.

    Of course, my husband describes much of my diet as “food slurry.” Which is why he makes dinner.

    1. I’ll try that, MJ. I love porridge, but I haven’t mastered microwaving yet. The only time I tried making porridge, it exploded all over the interior.

      1. Mine did too, Jane, so my stove top has a warm setting that while I was getting ready for work I would put the oatmeal and dried fruit in a bowl with the already hot water from the kettle, leave it to ‘cook’, finish getting dressed and come back to breakfast prepared.

      2. Reduced power is key. If I forget to change from full power to 50%, I end up with construction glue.

        Warning: I really do have abominable taste in food, partly due to a poor sense of smell. Our daughter tried my method and had to throw out the result.

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