Sunday, August 23, 2009


While dining out last night with my hubby and a couple of friends, we saw a complex action performed by a older sushi chef at the restaurant. He began arguing in what I assume was Japanese, with the other sushi chefs while pointing at a man seated one table over from us. Then he started shouting at the customer, again in Japanese. He came striding out from behind the sushi bar, still shouting and pointing at the customer, marched up to the man and quite literally slapped him upside the head! To our amazement, the customer took the blow, refused to even look at the sushi chef, muttered a few words of Japanese, then unintelligible English. The only part of the conversation we understood was the customer saying something about calling the cops. No one really did anything. Either none of the other customers caught what was going on, or we've become so desensitized to even mild violence that none of us really registered that we'd just witnessed an assault! A man that we presumed to be the manager gently led the sushi chef away while the woman seated at the table with the customer who'd been smacked sat looking quite mortified.

A short while later the sushi chef returned to the sushi bar, continued creating perfection in the form of some of the best sushi I've ever had the pleasure to indulge in, yet also continued (in Japanese) angrily expressing his displeasure. The customer got up and went to the bar (this was when we realized he was drunk, and must have seriously offended the sushi chef at some point), came back to his table, went to the bar again, came back again then sat down. The manager came out and spoke to the customer and he finally left, his embarrassed dinner companion following in his wake.

Hubby and I thoroughly enjoy observing people in public. They rarely fail to entertain. We've seen situations that would make a person blush, there have been times when hubby has felt it necessary to intervene on behalf of another person being abused, examples of genuine humanity when someone has reached out and offered help to a person who was struggling. A sushi chef slapping a customer on the back of the head however, that was a new experience.

Witty quip of the day: When your companions get drunk and fight, take up your hat and wish them good night. - Japanese Proverb. Too bad the sushi chef didn't keep this in mind.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Murphy's Law

Wednesday morning dawned bright and sunny here in central California. Hubby and I went about our normal morning routine; showers, coffee, getting the youngest ready for his first day of Junior High. At 7:25 hubby and I left, each in our respective Tahoes, and drove out of our neighborhood. At the end of the street, stopped at the stop sign, I waited while a police cruiser and a couple of other commuters passed by then made my turn. About a minute later hubby calls my cell and asks me to catch up to the officer and flag him down. Hubby had stopped and picked up the man's cell phone after it slid off the top of his cruiser. I told him I couldn't see the officer but I would call him back if I found him. Several minutes later I spotted the officer on the side of the road, door open, circling his car and obviously looking for something. I stopped and told him hubby found his phone after it fell of the roof. He laughed and asked where hubby was. Just then my phone rings and before hubby can speak, I told him that I found the officer and asked where he was. His response: "I just got pulled over for talking on my cell phone!"

"Oh no!" I shouted. I told the officer what happened. He calmly replied, "Oh sh*t!" Then jumped in said cruiser and took off to rescue hubby. Honestly, I couldn't help but laugh. I know that's terrible of me, but really? Who does this happen to?

About 15 minutes later hubby called me again (using his headset this time I presume) to tell me exactly what happened. After his initial call to me asking me to find the officer, he continued down the road as per normal. A moment later he saw an officer behind him with his lights on. Hubby pulled over and immediately exited the vehicle. Evidently the officer was unimpressed and shouted at hubby to get up on the curb and hubby complied. The officer's partner also exited the vehicle and stared hubby down.

Confused, hubby asked, "Did you lose a cell phone?"
"No, I didn't lose a cell phone!" First officer replied.
"Oh! Well there was a police cruiser just by here a second ago and his cell phone slid off the top of his car." Hubby tells him.
Second officer, now has his holster unsnapped and his hand on his gun.
"There hasn't been a cop through here for the last five minutes!" First officer informs him.
Hubby, still confused replied, "Yes there was! Like 10 cars ago."
Second officer now how his gun about halfway out of his holster.
Hubby takes all this in and says, "Wait a second, were you pulling me over?"
"Yes I was!" First officer's exasperated reply.
"What the hell did I do?" Hubby said, flabbergasted.
"Sir, you were talking on your cell phone."

This was a true Griswold moment as only the members of my family can experience. Hubby managed to convince the officers that he wasn't making this up by showing them the broken phone he'd retrieved. The first officer magnanimously told hubby that he would let him go with a warning. Mighty nice of him, eh? I'm guessing Mr. Anxious-to-shoot-hubby-if-he-so-much-as-farted was a bit disappointed though.

Witty quip of the day: We live in a society where pizza gets to your house before the police. - Pearlydean. Unless of course you're talking on your cell phone while driving.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Adventures in cooking

Fooling around online a couple of weeks ago found me pondering a couple of websites highlighting a concept known as Once A Month Cooking. The idea being that with a little planning you create a menu, go shopping, spend a day cooking, and wind up with a freezer stocked with fully prepared meals for the entire month. For us working moms (or dads if you're the ones doing the cooking) how wonderful to be able to come home at the end of a long day and merely heat up that homemade meal. I had visions of my family's reactions to no more 'fend for yourself' nights because I'd forgotten to defrost the meat, or since my daughter and I are vegetarians, making the boys their dinner, but forgetting to make something non meat based for us.

I checked out this OAMC idea and thought, I am the queen of making lists how hard could this be? I scrolled through several meal ideas on a couple of different websites, thought through my family's favorite dishes, and made up a menu of 16 different options. We invariably have leftovers when I cook, and there's no reason why leftovers can't be a part of this plan. After making the menu, which included five breakfast options, I made the grocery list. I discovered a pattern when I made that list for a month's worth of meals. We eat an ungodly amount of cheese! Nonetheless, the list was made. Hubby and I went grocery shopping and spent $279.00 to make a month's worth of breakfasts and dinners to feed our family of four. We stopped at the dollar store and picked up disposable pans and several more inexpensive single serving plastic containers for hubby's breakfasts, along with freezer bags, and tin foil. All told another $28.00 invested. We got home, unloaded everything and I was all set to embark on this cooking journey.

Because I'm nothing if not a helper and a giver, here are a few tips for you should you ever decide to take up this challenge:

1. Don't wait to grocery shop until Sunday afternoon.
2. Don't start cooking a month's worth of meals on Sunday evening. You only wind up with maybe four meals and wind up cooking every night for the next week to finish this supposed "once a month cooking" project.
3. Don't use lasagna sized pans for every meal you make, unless you own a free-standing freezer. We have two refrigerator freezers. A month of meals in pans, DO NOT FIT in those freezers!
4. Despite the desire to make it super easy by having all those meals in lasagna sized pans, in my abnormally small oven two of those pans don't fit at the same time, and since I make two of everything, one with meat and one without, this has in essence doubled the cooking time each night. So I suggest you get everyone on board, either everyone eats meat or everyone becomes a vegetarian.

This weekend as I endeavor to finish this darn OAMC project, I will be putting everything I make in FREEZER BAGS instead of pans, I will do it SATURDAY instead of Sunday night, I will actually MAKE the breakfasts I promised my kids, and I will stop trying to force feed squash to my family who claims to hate it. The squash thing is really a side note. Being quite frugal (cheap), when friends offer up free veggies from their gardens, I take them up on it! However, when your family won't eat it, I suppose it doesn't do any good to cut, par-boil, and freeze 20 pounds of squash. I will do Once A Month Cooking again, although due to space constraints it will likely be more like Twice A Month Cooking, but will endeavor to put a little more thought and planning into it.

Witty quip of the day: Lack of preplanning on your part, does not constitute an emergency on my part. From a sign on the wall in my dad's workshop.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Mission Not-So-Impossible

I was thinking today that you've all heard several stories now of the real, and at the very least, somewhat amusing experiences in the lives my family and me, so how about some feedback from all of you?

Here's your mission, should you choose to accept it: post a comment describing a funny experience that happened in your family. Was is something with one of your kids? Did you spouse horrify you in public? Did you new puppy run into a neighbor's house and potty on their carpet? (no, that didn't actually happen to me, however my neighbor's horse-sized dog did wander into our new house and 'introduce' himself to us while we were moving in!) It can be anything you can think of and I may very well compile these stories into my next article for's online magazine.

As always thanks so much for your support, for your readership, and for sharing in the experience of my various and sundry ramblings.

Apryl :)

Wednesday, August 5, 2009


I just found out that my third article for was not only published, but is being FEATURED right now! Scroll to the bottom of the page where the Features are located, mine is the TOP article. Yay! Thanks to everyone for your unyielding love and support.