Jim Huggins (jkhuggins) wrote,
Jim Huggins

Wednesday Hodgepodge: 27 April 2016

So I missed a few weeks, and then the Hodgepodge took a week off.  Let's try to get back into this, shall we?

The Wednesday Hodgepodge appears courtesy of From This Side Of The Pond.

1. This is the last Hodgepodge in April. Share something you learned this month.

On Spring Break with my family, we spent a couple of days in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.   I'd seen the movie, and knew the broad outlines of the Civil War, but it was fascinating to see the land itself and put all the pieces together in my head.

It was also interesting to accidentally end up eating lunch at a local pub which happened to be the headquarters of both the Union and Confederate cast members during the shooting of the movie.   Apparently, the Confederate cast was a rather rowdy bunch, enjoying themselves nightly the pub.   One night, the actor who played General Pickett jumped onto the bar and shouted "I've finally taken the high ground!".

2.  It's National Poetry Month, and we all know you can't escape an April Hodgepodge without a little poetry. Keeping the first line as is, change the rest of the wording in this familiar rhyme to make it your own - 'Hickory Dickory Dock...

Hickory, Dickory, Dock
There's no one on our block
Our house just sits
Alone, but its
A lovely example of nonconformism.

3. What were one or two rules in the home you grew up in? Growing up, did you feel your parents were strict? Looking back do you still see it that way?

About the only "rule" I really remember was "call when you get home".   My mother re-entered the workforce when we moved to a new home at the beginning of my junior high days; she wanted to know that we were home safely from school each day.   It wasn't a long call (because she had work to do, of course), but it helped her know all was well at home.

I didn't think my folks were particularly strict or lax, either then or now.

4. Tell us about a kitchen or cooking disaster or mishap you've experienced. Do you have many from which to choose?

The story I always tell ...

The time that I truly lived on my own was the summer after my junior year of college, when I got a summer job working for IBM in Rochester, Minnesota.   I'd never really "cooked" anything in my life; okay, I could open a box of frozen stuff and stick it in the oven or microwave, but that was it, really.   When I rented an efficiency apartment in Minnesota, my mother fully expected that I'd just eat out for every meal.  I said that I really shouldn't do that, and we assembled a small collection of kitchen items to allow me to move forward.   Mom even sent me a package with a frying pan and a "Cooking for One" cookbook.

So far, so good.

I look through the cookbook.   There's a recipe in there for fried rice.   Excellent; I love Chinese food, and the instructions appear pretty simple.   I go to the supermarket, buy all the ingredients, get home, open up the recipe.   First ingredient in the recipe: "two cups cooked rice".   I grab the box of rice and look at it: right there, on the label, it says "pre-cooked rice".   Great!   So I poor out two cups of the contents of the package directly into the frying pan and continue with the rest of the recipe.

The results were ... a little crunchy.

I had to do it a second time before I finally realized that "pre-cooked" meant something else, and that, yes, indeed, I needed to cook the rice before I could fry it.

5. Plant a kiss, plant doubt, plant a tree, plant yourself somewhere...which on the list have you most recently planted?

Probably a kiss.   I love my wife.

6. What's your most worn item of clothing this time of year? Are you tired of it?

Right now, I'm wearing a lightweight jacket that I received last month from Kettering's Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning as a part of its inaugural Great Teachers Retreat.   It's very comfy.

7. I'm wrapping up the A-Z Blog Challenge this month and our Hodgepodge lands on letter W. What's one word beginning with W that describes you in some way? How about a word to describe your home, also beginning with W?

For me: the word is weary.

For my home ... it's probably "welcome".   As Robert Frost said: "Home is the place where, when you have to go there, they have to take you in."

8. Insert your own random thought here.

This non-teaching term is going ... oddly.   News from work is discouraging, and so I'm almost deliberately saying "screw it, I'm staying home and playing, because I'm going to stress out unbelievably in July".   Which is, on the one hand, something I probably should've started doing years ago.   But I hate that I'm doing it.

  • An open letter to my colleagues in academia

    Dear colleagues, This week, I had three different students visit my office hours (or "student hours", as the trendy schools are calling them these…

  • Perseverance

    In sixth grade, I was a student in Mrs. Fitzpatrick's class at Harrison Elementary School in Inkster, MI. One day, substantially into the year, we…

  • I miss harmony.

    (Warning, long, self-indulgent, emo post. Read on at your own risk.) Several years ago, as my patient family will attest, I fell into a YouTube…

  • Post a new comment


    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    Your IP address will be recorded 

    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.