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Pardon my joy. As if I can help it.

April 7, 2010

Listened to the show Saturday and it was not bad. You can imagine my joy when I found Brandi Carlile was on the show once again. And you can imagine the eyeballs rolling all over the house, too. Of course. Someone is a fanatic about something and everyone else goes and gets all bent out of shape. Well. Pardon my joy. As if I can help it. She even sang "The Story" again and you expect me to abstain from even a bit of giddiness?

No. You have got to celebrate a person who sings from way down deep like that. She's got my vote. I've always admired people who have the quality of "be-who-you-are-ness." They fully inhabit themselves. They simply ARE. I mean really. It's not like you can BE anyone else, and why try, anyway? And why would you want to? So many people spend so much time futzing around with themselves, trying to be more like someone else when what they aren't seeing is that they're perfectly fine just the way they are. Imagine.

Of course, when you've got people rolling your eyes at you, it is tempting to fold up into a ball and sit there and not move for awhile. Brandi knows. She sings it herself: No, they don't know who I really am / And they don't know what / I've been through like you do And I was made for you. Which is why I, today, am grateful for My People. The ones who know me and love me anyway. The ones who experience my forgetfulness and indecision and mood swings and — instead of chalking it up to instability or some form of mental weakness — shine light on it. You're creative, they tell me. Your head is full of wonderful things, and you happen to feel a lot. How you drive is just fine; it's part of who you are. So you cry once in a while. Crying is human. It's healthy. It means you're feeling something.

Yeah. Those are the people you want in your life. You want to gather them around you and keep them there and bake cherry pies for them and take them with you to beautiful places like rivers and soft serve ice cream kiosks at the fair. You want to cook wonderful Italian meals for them and teach them how to carve a bird out of a perfect piece of wood. And you want to jump on trampolines with them and make plans for road trips to ordinary places neither of you have been before like the Iron Range or the Badlands simply because you like to be together. And if you fall asleep in the car on the way with your head tilted back and wobbling and your mouth wide open, it's not going to be a big deal. Because the way you are is just fine with the person at the wheel and the people in the back seat. Sure is.

Puttanesca Sauce
This sauce is good for an evening of entertaining friends. Make a double batch and serve with two pounds of good pasta. Make sure you've got something light for dessert.

4 cloves garlic
1/4 c. olive oil
Fresh basil
1/4 c. white wine
Parsley
2 T capers (or more, to taste)
1/4 c. Greek olives, pitted and halved, quartered or chopped

1/4 c. chopped anchovies
Pepper
2 (16 oz.) cans crushed tomatoes
Parmesano cheese for top

Sauté garlic in olive oil until golden (not brown). Add tomatoes and all other ingredients except Parmesano cheese. Add no salt to this recipe. Cook for 20 minutes on medium heat stirring occasionally. Pour sauce over cooked linguine. Sprinkle Parmesano cheese on top.

If you like a hot sauce, try adding a cayenne or dried hot chili pepper with the garlic.

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