We should be just about done with all the ”Best of” and Top 10 Most Spectacular Vomit Moments of 2011 that clog practically every newspaper and magazine in the land. But I wouldn’t be a contributing member of blogger-society if I didn’t put the Hermist’s fondest adventures on record.
I’ve come into myself this year, owning up to the role of the Hermist, and no longer trying to force the social butterfly bullshit that simply wasn’t me. Once I did that, I found, much to my surprise, a feeling of relief and also an abundance of good things. Let’s look, shall we?
A new and entertaining friend, Cheffapetta came to visit the wilds of Austin from the Land of the Sophisticated Palate (Denver), so I had to show him a thing or two about gritty-Coke-In-The-Glass-Bottle-With-Yer-Brisket barbecue. Wood paneled walls, duck decor, plastic plates and a roll of paper towels. You’ve been schooled.
This was the year of canning. I canned practically anything I could get my hands on, from boozed-up strawberries to grilled corn to watermelon rinds and lime-slapped kiwis. I actually killed my nice stove in the process and never had so much fun.
The highlight of all that sweating and domestic syrup were the get-togethers with my hermitty friends who weren’t afraid to step into the kitchen with me. Now, I’d post photos of the gooey leche quemada, the swimming-in-whisky strawberries and the rows of jeweled fruit in jars, but there are other sites that do food porn so much more justice.
Here was our first canning party, with myself in a feverish state, surrounded by my beautiful domestic-lovin’ friends. God love ya. I barely remember anything thanks to that penicillin, what a hell of a party!
Part of my hermit transformation was learning a lot about how to fend for myself. And part of THAT includes a pressure cooker, which I was afraid of, and now, am only slightly afraid of. Just a little bit. Thanks to David Alexander, for the story about his grandmother blowing up her stove top/roof… but that is another story. *Do take a special note of the Mistress of Ceremony, the lovely Milan, parked directly in the center of all the quick-paced and high-energy action in the kitchen. She knows who’s in charge.
Here’s Russ. The man makes an excellent elderberry wine, which he creates himself of course, along with above-pictured beef stew, and can fully stock his own larder single-handedly. The man has amazing potential for Hermit status…
Where The Wild Things Are.
My role this past year was the designated wielder of the knife and spatula, cooking up outdoor meals for the people crawling through bushes, being chased by zombies, and living the primitive life. My inner hermit got much joy out of witnessing moments like these.
I loved watching the process of Human Pathers evolving into crafty, independent diy-ers who weren’t afraid of getting dirty, doing it from scratch and taking care of themselves.
Honestly, and I know everyone agrees on this one. There is nothing better than a girl who can kick your ass.
When we hosted the 1st Annual Zombie Apocalypse this past October, it was an awesome experience to watch how zombies can really put a crimp on carefully planned disorder.
Plus we got to witness zombies who barely stumbled, barely moved, barely accessorized. Zombie baby, zombie kid, zombie bride, zombie gung-ho dad. And one zombie, who was a streak of darkness, running after pathers in the pitch black.
A Drill. A Vat of Glue. And An Apron.
One of my outward expressions of happiness is to create textile installations. Its a surreal Dr. Suess meets The Stepford Wives world, with my alter ego, the Kitchen Goddess. Somehow, working with fabric and lots of laborious applications of string, stick-pins and nails, has become my defining mark. My college art professors would be so proud. (probably not)
Here is the floating altar, year two, that Rick and I set loose in the Woodlawn Lake. After an intense summer drought, ‘setting loose’ might not be the right term, as it grazed the murky bottom of the very low casting pond.
The highlight of the year for me was the day I could step out of Vi’s hair salon with my hair sprayed so fastidiously into a beehive that it took me almost a week to get it out. I stuck two shellacked forks in my hair, put on my pink flirtin’ gloves and my favorite blue chiffon apron, was handed a never-empty glass of wine and out I went … the kitchen goddess.
Who says art can’t be fun? With the indispensible Rebecca Coffey fronting the kitchen lines, we opened up a alternate reality of frozen housewife smiles and pickles on a stick. View the exhibit photos here!