Dr. Cocoa Puffs

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Sunday, July 30, 2006

Block Party - 2 Hands Up

For today's pleasure a little movie review...
Well, I finally got up off my ass and went to see a movie. And it was great. Friday night we went to Open Air Kino at Millerntor to see Dave Chappelle's Block Party. It's probably the best concert film I've ever seen, surpassing even The Song Remains the Same (a film I may have seen while under the influence, so my judgement on that one may not be the most reliable). Granted, I'm into hip hop, the irony of which (white girl living in really white northern Europe) is not lost on me so I could get into the music - I knew who most of the performers were - but even the Guitar Hero and our friend A. really liked the music. Could I just marry Mos Def in a parallel existence? The bits with Chappelle were also great, but then again, I think he's a brilliant comedian.

Seeing the film put me in a good mood, but it also made a part of me homesick. I miss the multiculurality (is that a word?) that exists in the States. I know, I know, there are lots of racial and cultural problems in the States, but my own personal experience during my over 20 years there was that there was more acceptance of differences and more mingling. Music, fashion, food - wherever you look, the 'other' has flavored the 'norm'. Over here, on the other hand, different cultures, be it German, Turkish, Russian, what have you, don't seem to mix much. I guess the main difference is that over here the various cultures exist as islands with little connection to one another and in the States they're peninsulas somehow hooked together.

Okay, enough with the pseudo-socio-political commentary. I really liked the film. I even plan to see it again. Go see it. Buy the DVD. Get the soundtrack.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Mmm... couscous salad

Although this is by far not a food blog (for two really lovely food blogs go to Delicious Days or Domestic Goddess), if I discover a really yummy recipe I will share it with the rest of the net world.

So here's my new discovery. It's actually not so new, it's just that in its modified form it's more than delicious. And it's incredibly easy and really, really fast. And since you only need the stove to boil the broth, it's also perfect for friggin' hot weather.

Presenting Couscous Salad a la Dr. Cocoa Puffs

You need:
- couscous
- vegetable broth
- curry powder
- vegetable oil
- butter

Prepare the couscous. I use more or less equal amounts of couscous and broth, with about 1-2 teaspoons of curry powder and/or tumeric mixed in. Boil the broth, add 1 tablespoon oil, mix in the couscous, remove from heat, cover and let sit for 5 minutes. Add about 1 tablespoon of butter and fluff with a fork

Meanwhile, mix together:

- cucumber, peeled and chopped
- bell pepper, chopped
- tomato, chopped
- black olives, sliced
- fresh mint, finely chopped
- fresh parsley, finely chopped

Once the couscous has cooled down, mix the couscous in with the veggies. Let it sit for a bit (hey, I'm a poet and didn't know it!) to let the flavors blend. It can be served so, but to make it even more special serve it with a Yogurt Herb Sauce, a brilliant stroke by the Guitar Hero.

Yogurt Herb Sauce

Mix together:
- plain yogurt
- fresh herbs, finely chopped (we used mint and parsley)
Season with a little garlic powder and a pinch of curry powder.

As for the amount of couscous and veggies needed, this depends on how many people need food and how hungry they are. Guitar Heros might need a bit more than your normal everyday person.

Enjoy net world. Mmm... couscous. I think the leftovers are calling me...

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

My husband's many nicknames

My husband, known here thus far as the Lovable Hobo, has made it known that he's not too happy that I refer to him on my blog as a hobo. It's another one of the many nicknames I have for him that he doesn't like. I admittedly have a tendency to give him a new nickname every other week. When we first got together oh so many years ago, I called him Herschel after Krusty the Clown. If this needs explaining, you're not a Simpsons fan. So go here for help. This was followed by periods where he was called, among other things, Bautzi, Boodles, Mumu, Dipshit, and the list goes on and on.

A few months ago, while watching Frauentausch, i.e., one of the best piece of crap shows on German tv (yes, we are klassy), one of the husbands strongly resembled a hobo. Or at least how hobos look in comedies from the 1930s. Seriously. So I jokingly said, "Hey, there's a hobo." And it became a joke with us and we started calling each other a hobo. But apparently my husband takes offense to being called a hobo on the internet. So I need to find a new nickname for him. How about Guitar Hero because this is his new favorite game. Yes, it's love when he's plays "More than a Feeling" over and over on a little plastic guitar in front of the tv and I DON'T run screaming out the door. Lovable Hobo, thou wilt henceforth be known as Guitar Hero.

Oh, and here's a little trivia fact: there's actually a fucking hobo homepage. Check it out.

By the way, the picture is of when I had a little accident one time cutting the Guitar Hero's hair. I told him a million times, I can analyze the fuck out of Goethe's Faust, but I can't cut other people's hair. Sadly, he wouldn't listen...

Monday, July 24, 2006

Picture test

Let's see if I can upload a picture and copy it over to my profile...

So friggin' hot

It's been hot. Really fucking hot. It's getting close to summer in Kansas hot. So hot that I brought work home from my non air-conditioned, west-facing (is that a word?) office thinking it would be easier and more comfortable to work here. Instead my concentration seems to have melted like a scoop of Ben and Jerry's (mmm, Ben and Jerry's) and so I'm sitting around in my underwear (it's not as sexy as you might think) and surfing the net and getting grumpy because I feel like I should be getting something productive done. Work, do the dishes, clean the house, do my taxes, start a sewing project, get an acting career off the ground. Something, anything goddamn it! Ahh! Yes, I think I'm a bit manic. Any advice on how to cure myself of it is welcome.

Another negative side effect of this heatwave is that I, normally a semi-avid kitchen chef (Was machen Sie gerne? Ich koche gerne.), have absolutely no desire to cook. Zero, zip, nil. I just want to go out to eat at any of the great restaurants and cafes with outdoor seating we've discovered since moving to the new pad in May. Sounds great, right? Only the new place is more expensive than the old one and the move took a bite out of our bank accounts. So we're trying to save money. Have I mentioned that saving money sucks when the bistro down the street has these really yummy appetizers, including homemade fries and chips, or this lovely Italian restaurant has linguine in clam sauce that's to die for? Anyway, I guess I'll be grown-up about it. Which is no fun. Tuna sandwiches and corn on the cob it'll be for the Lovable Hobo and me. At least that only requires only minimal kitchen time.

Before any comments on the topic: yes, I know how hypocritical my bitching about the heat is. Yes, I know that I bitch and bitch and bitch about the gef├╝hlte 360 days of cold and rainy weather per year in Hamburg. So what. I'm manic AND hypocritical. It's a winning combination. Are you jealous of the Lovable Hobo yet?!

P.S. A bright spot on the horizon: Law & Order: Criminal Intent is on tv tonight. Okay, it's dubbed in German, which sucks, but still. It's got Vincent D'Onofrio and Vincent D'Onofrio rocks!

Saturday, July 22, 2006

A Hero Saves the Day

This morning our chubby 13-year old cat, Friskie (slogan: Big and Cuddy, Soft and Wuddly), saved us! From two big, scary pigeons!
She was sitting at the open balcony door, looking out at all the lovely herbs she likes to sniff and mark with her cheeks when she suddenly started making "chea chea" sounds (that 'ch' is a very back 'x' sound, linguistically speaking. Yes, linguistic courses were on my grad school curriculum.).

My husband, the lovable Hobo, and I wondered what the fuck was up as Friskie hasn't gotten excited about a potential intruder in, well, ever. So we looked out and what do you know, there was a pigeon perched on the railing. Ole Frisks quieted down a bit. We thought the danger was over. But then she started up again and also began meowing very pitifully. The enemy had backup - a second pigeon had joined him (her - who knows with pigeons). Frisks kept meowing, but she wouldn't venture outside. We think she wanted us to do her dirty work. Finally, she gathered up all her courage, crept out onto the balcony and...
politely and rather quietly meowed at the pigeons to please leave. Which they did. I think they were more annoyed than scared. As we didn't want to wear our cat's confidence down, we heaped praise upon her and told her those pigeons were probably deathly afraid of her bold actions.

The picture shows our courageous bodyguard just moments after the confrontation

Friday, July 21, 2006

My blog is born!

Announcing the birth of my blog, Dr. Cocoa Puffs!
After spending way, way too much of my freetime reading other people's blogs (some really good, some ehh), I finally decided to join the blogging crowd. All along the lines of being active instead of passive.

Sooo, let's see how this goes...