Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Getting Ready for St. Patrick's Day or Can We Buy Enough Corned Beef (or beer) for This Crowd?

We're having a St. Patrick's Day party, as you may know if you are a regular Buns of Stone reader. I told Regis (and he was not surprised) that I was getting anxious about not having enough corned beef. I bought seven pounds but this is the pattern...I always get nervous about three days before a party and start buying more food like a crazy person. I'm using a recipe from the food network, although not from Emerill. The menu has been fixed as follows:
Corned Beef and Cabbage
Boiled Potatoes and Carrots
Scotch Eggs
Irish Oatmeal Bread
Irish Coffee
And of course, Guinness and Harp for appetizer and dessert. I think I'll make some big cut-out sugar cookie shamrocks with green frosting and sprinkles but they aren't really Irish so I can't put them on the official menu.

I don't have a lot of Irish in my gene pool. I believe my paternal grandfather, Hassa Saum, was Irish. Regis has no Irish in his background at all...he's Polish and German. His maternal side had the family name of Bogacka which is the feminine form and Bogatzky being the masculine form. They sure liked to conserve those vowels. But they don't have parades for the Poles here...the Norwegians either for that matter although now that I think about it I might have a party for Syettende Mai. What the hell.

I picked up two new books at the library. I finally figured out to put books on hold so it's really handy. I have Jim Harrison's new book Returning to Earth and Let Me Finish by Roger Angell. The Angell book has this for a description: Intimate, funny, and moving portraits form this book's centerpiece as Angell remembers his eccentric relatives, his childhood love of baseball in the time of Ruth and Gehrig and DiMaggio, and his vivid colleagues during his long career as a "New Yorker" writer and editor. The last memoir I read was a complete dud so I hope this one is better.

Jim Harrison is one of my favorite authors and this is what Publisher's Weekly said about his book: Dying at 45 of Lou Gehrig's disease, Donald, who is Chippewa- Finnish, dictates his family story to his wife, Cynthia, who records this headlong tale for their two grown children. Donald's half-Chippewa great-grandfather, Clarence, set out from Minnesota in 1871 at age 13 for the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. In Donald's compellingly digressive telling, Clarence worked the farms and mines of the northern Midwest, and arrived in the Marquette, Mich., area 35 years later. As Donald weaves the tale of his settled life of marriage and fatherhood with that of his restless ancestors, he reveals his deep connection to an earlier, wilder time and to a kind of people who are "gone forever." The next three parts of the novel, each narrated by a different member of Donald's family, relate the story of Donald's death and its effects.

We have the movie Babel but man, that seems like work. Has anybody watched that and actually enjoyed it? I think I'd rather wait for Benny and Joon or Kinky Boots. We voted and Babel will have to wait for another night.

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