Friday, August 01, 2008
My dad showed up unexpectedly late Wednesday night. Apparently he had some "bidness" to take care of here in South Florida for a couple of days. He swears it wasn't the earthquake.

Personally, when I heard about that earthquake Tuesday I was certain my next call would be from my parents to tell me that they were on the bus back home. My mom called me seconds after it happened sounding like she was having a heart attack. She said she had adrenaline and pains racing up and down her spine and into her head. She's never been in an earthquake before. I take after her with my neuroses. We're scared of everything. My dad is the opposite. Chunks of lava could be raining from the sky. We could be invaded by aliens or he could be on a plummeting plane and the man would be totally unaffected by it all and saying "Oh well, life was good." So my mom was freaking out a bit, but she was ok. She describes her building as "swaying and cracking" which sounds very frightening to me. When I asked my dad to describe the same scene he was all like "It was nothing, a little shaking. I hardly noticed it."

Truthfully I was a bit disappointed that I wasn't there. You know my fascination with natural disasters that aren't actually disasters that hurt people. This would have been perfect, since there were no injuries. I've never been in an earthquake either and I think it would be interesting to feel a small one like this one was. I have the same philosophy about earthquakes as I do about tornadoes.

So my dad arrived Wednesday and is here indefinitely, which is kind of nice because I missed him. He didn't bring my mom, so she's still in LA.

My dad had another celebrity encounter.

He was standing in a hotel lobby waiting for one of my ten thousand cousins to come down and meet him and he sees this attractive older woman (older meaning like his age, not my age) wearing a straw hat and he knows her from somewhere and it's bothering him. He thinks maybe she is one of my mom's friends or a lady from the dog park or maybe she works in a store in the nieghborhood or something, and the woman is looking at him too, like she feels the same way. So finally, because he doesn't want to be rude in case he DOES know her he goes up and says to her.

"Ma'am I am so sorry, I know I know you from somewhere, but I just can't seem to place where and I didn't want you to think I was being rude in case you were my wife's friend or something."

The woman laughs a little.

"Well, I am an actress," she says.

Then my dad looks at her and realizes that oh my God the woman has two different colored eyes and she is Jane Seymour and he wants the floor to open and swallow him whole.

"Oh I am so mortified!!! I am so sorry," he says, "I can't believe I would make such a stupid mistake. You're not just an actress, you're an amazing actress!"

This broke the ice with her and she started to laugh and actually started asking my dad about himself like she actually cared and before long she was talking about her daughter and he was talking about me and they probably talked about the dogs and lord knows what else and then he said how she should meet my mom and by the time five minutes were up he was telling her she should come have dinner with him and my mom when he gets back from his trip to Florida and she was saying that yes that would be fabulous and they exchanged numbers and everything. Can you imagine?

I don't know what Jane Seymour was in except the James Bond movie where she was a fortune teller. I never watched Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman. I just remember that she was in some TV movies or miniseries that were based on the books my grandmothers read. But I do remember that Jane Seymour was very, very beautiful.

So in other news, I'm all unpacked from my trip. I ran errands all week and not a single interesting thing happened there. I've spent the past two days at the beach with my sister and I intend to do it again. In fact, I think I'll just spend the next three weeks at the beach until my skin looks like the old woman in "Something About Mary." No, I wear sunscreen, don't worry.

Last night my dad took us to his favorite restaurant, which is spectacular and the server decided that we shouldn't order and that he would bring us out tastings of things we would like. I was somewhat alarmed because both my dad and I have food allergies, bad food allergies, but we decided to be brave. We were lucky because there was only one thing I couldn't eat, but that's not the point. The point is that one of the dishes was veal cheek and this gave everyone at the table great pause. It looked kinda good.

Veal cheek is nothing that I would ever, in a million years, ever order. Husband and I don't eat baby animals. I realize that the logic of this is pretty stupid. I think if you, for some moral reason, don't eat certain animals or certain types of animals that you should really go ahead and eat no animals at all. Except I don't follow my own philosophy at all and I have no idea why it skeezes me out to eat baby animals and not grown up ones or for that matter certain parts of animals but not other parts. The whole thing is honestly very ridiculous and very American of me, but I can't seem to get over it. I should be a vegetarian, but that's too much of a committment.

I think my baby animal aversion comes from two thing. One thing is the anti-veal movement of the 80s. Remember the posters and commercials about the veal industry? They traumatized me as a teenager and veal was something we never ever had at home anyway, so it was a very unfamiliar food and then when I went to a restaurant (which was extremely rare when I was growing up) I never thought to try veal because only very evil people ate it. So I have lived this long without ever eating veal, though I suspect I have actually eaten it in certain meatballs and bolognese sauces. I just don't think about it. Also veal is a gross word.

The second reason for my no baby animal rule is that lambs are very cute and that lamb meat stinks like the ass of death when you cook it. Sometimes my dad roasts lamb and people just rave about how delicious it us, however, the stench of it is so appalling that I can't even consider tasting it. I can not get over that horrendous smell.

When I was growing up we went to two restaurants. The first was a chinese restaurant on the Upper East Side. The other was a greek restaurant - some very authentic hole in the wall place in a greek neighborhood in what I want to say was Queens, but I can't quite remember. I actually liked the greek restaurant a lot. I have a fondness for tzatziki. At the greek restaurant my parents would order for me and trick me into eating lamb by telling me it was beef. I found out years later.

"I'm not eating lamb," I said.

"You love lamb," my mother said.

"Oh no I don't."

"Yes you do. You used to eat it at the greek restaurant and love it."

"No I didn't. I ate beef."

"It was lamb, we just used to tell you it was beef to shut you up."

That is so wrong.

But last night I was confronted with a plate of veal cheek. No one wanted to eat it. We all looked at it. We tried to get our friend who was with us to eat it. No one volunteered. Finally, I decided that in keeping with my resolution to be a more adventurous eater I had to at least taste it. So I was brave and I took a bite of baby cow head. One thing I can say is that it was tender. The other thing I can say is that it just tasted like porcini mushroom sauce. The sauce was so strong that you could have put it on pretty much anything and it would have drowned out the flavor. And that was that. I ate my piece. I did it. I don't think Fear Factor is in my future, and I don't think I would ever order veal cheek, but at least I can say I tried it.

So to recap my week - my dad is here, I went to the beach, nothing else happened and I ate baby cow head. What unusual foods have you eaten this week?


Anonymous said...

My theory on certain icky parts is that there have been times when it made sense to eat every part of an animal. Way, way back people put forth a lot of effort to hunt the creature down and kill it so they wouldn't want to waste any of it.

Then later on they were either to poor to waste any parts or so rich that they got bored with steak and roast so they decided it would be fun to eat eyeballs and brain.

At this point in history, I don't hunt, I'm not poor and destitute or rich and excentric so I'll just stick with the normal, meaty parts of an animal - "No gut parts" - that's my meat motto.

Cheeks fall within that motto. I don't want to eat anythings face. I'll eat baby animals, no problem. The marinated lamb at my local Greek hole in the wall is amazing!

Wide Lawns said...

Makes total sense to me.

EWWWWW I ate something's face!!!!

Anonymous said...

oh come on -- you know you love it -- LEG OF WHEEL!!!

Anonymous said...

OK, I LOVE LOVE LOVE stories about your parents, especially their celebrity really is close.. Milpond...LA..Milpond..LA
Totally entertaining.

I'd LOVE to hang w/ your dad.

Anonymous said...

My parents used to lie to me about food too! We would go out for fish and chips when I was little. I refused to each fish, so they fed me "chicken" and chips. Yeah. Chicken of the Sea, maybe.

They also told me that the jeep that drove slowly around the neighborhood playing tinkly music out of a speaker on top was a "music truck" that played music for children. I believed her until the little girls next door set me straight about the whole ice cream vendor aspect of the music truck.

Unknown said...

I'll trade places...I had to drink 2 oz of castor oil, 8 oz of citus magnesium,and not only drink 8 oz of barium (elmer's glue) but have it pumped up my ass. Not a fun week.

Wide Lawns said...

Holy crap (literally). Sounds like you have stomach problems. Well, I hope your tests all came out ok and that you are feeling better.

Joy said...

Ah, the earthquake. Hubby was about half a mile from the epicenter, on a ladder, painting crown molding when it happened. I was at my own job and actually said out loud, "i hope hubby isn't on a ladder right now". All was well. It was a just a baby shaker. Tornados are much more fun.

I do think veal is good. I just don't think about the animal, which probably isn't right, but there it is.

Anonymous said...

When I was studying abroad in Spain, the lady I was living with wouldn't tell me what I was eating if she thought I would say "eeewww" and refuse to try it. One time, during dinner, we had a meat that was a flavor and texture I had never experienced before, so I asked her what it was. She replied "carne" (meat) and refused to tell me anymore until after the meal.

At the end of dinner, I asked again and she told me "la lengua de ternera." And, so, now I can say that I've eaten veal tongue.

I wasn't a really picky eater before living there, but I'm definitely not now. You become much more open to trying new things when you regularly don't know what you are eating until hours afterwards and you look up the description in your Spanish-English dictionary (which is what happened the first time I had octopus).

Anonymous said...

Nothing crazy this week, its been a quiet week. But I want to be able to say, "yes, I've tried that and I know I don't like it" when someone tries to get me to eat something gross. So I have had all types of meat (sweetbreads, veal,etc) and all types of seafood. No bugs. Usually I'm a fan of the whole "if it's covered in chocolate I'll try it" mantra but I draw the line at bugs.

Lynn said...

On August 23 on the Hallmark Channel Jane Seymour is starting in a movie, Dear Prudence. Especially after your father's encounter you might enjoy it.

Anonymous said...

That's a great story. I love the part with the celebrity Jane Seymour. She's really friendly and I've heard she's coming in a new TV movie on Hallmark Chanell Saturday, August 23rd 9/8c. Take a time and watch this new movie. I can't wait watching this movie.

maryann said...

Great story about Jane Seymour,you may want to tell your dad she is starring in a new movie August 23 for Hallmark called Dear Prudence! You would probably like it too- mystery, comedy, romance- there are a bunch of clips on U Tube, Hallmark has a forum for it and you can learn a bit about the movie here as well

Green said...

I tasted a new brand of yogurt this morning.

Jane Seymour was also on Dancing With the Stars. KEEP UP!

Umm... I was going to say something else too... oh yes! The earthquake. In four years I've been here for a few of them, and honestly, I'm never even sure of what I'm feeling. "Is a big truck going by? Oh wait, maybe it's an earthquake... I'm not sure. Let me go look to see if I see a truck out the window..."

By this time it's over and people have already Twittered about it. Not at all exciting.

Anonymous said...

This week I had tiramisu for the first time. I realize it's not that unusual/weird of a food, but for this foreign-born girl it was new. I loved it!

Anonymous said...

What a cute story about your dad meeting Jane Seymour...poor guy I'd wanna drop through the floor too! How great though to know she's as friendly as I always thought her to be!!! Oh and I just read on Hallmark Channel she's got a new movie coming out Aug. 23rd, it's called Dear Prudence I believe, and is supposed to be a who-dun-it murder mystery, sorta like "Murder, She Wrote" only prettier. Sounds'll have to tell your dad to check it out for sure. LOL how great seeing her in person THEN seeing her on your tv heehee. Lucky man!!!

Anonymous said...

What a great s great story! Jane Seymour is so great with her fans, she's always so friendly and open with people.

I'm so excited for her upcoming TV movie, "Dear Prudence." It airs August 23 at 9:00 p.m. EST on the Hallmark channel. It will have mystery, humor, and romance. It sounds like a wonderful movie!

Anonymous said...

What a cute story!!! Thanks for sharing it with us!!!

And don't forget to tune in August 23rd on Hallmark Channel for Jane's latest movie Dear Prudence.= )

Anonymous said...

I had portobello mushrooms for the first time this week. Yeah, I know it's not that uncommon, but hey, it was new for me!

Wide Lawns said...

Am I being spammed with someone who had a Jane Seymour google alert or something? Does Hallmark pay people to comment and promote this movie or are you all that big of fans?

I'll watch the movie. I'll TiVo it. I swear. I will. Really.

When is it on again?

Just kidding.

staticwarp said...

peanut butter and jelly with a piece of american cheese and cajun seasoning.

the wierdness factor increases as the groceries slowly dwindle away...

staticwarp said...

oh, and i have developed a fondness for lengua and barbacoa, which are toungue and cheek meat, respectively.

the Bag Lady said...

Love the celebrity sighting story. Gosh, Jane Seymour's supposed to be in a TV movie soon - at least, according to all your spammers... :)

I raise beef cattle and have a hard time eating veal. In fact, I have a hard time selling our calves when the time comes. Hubby won't let me go to the auction mart to watch them sell anymore because of the "unfortunate incident".... sobbing and such.

Steph said...

"Am I being spammed with someone who had a Jane Seymour google alert or something?"

Hehe. I was wondering the same thing.

It airs August 23rd on the Hallmark Channel! Hehe.

Nicole said...

Considering I'm dating a vegetarian, I've become severely addicted to sushi and sashimi. So I had some at lunch with my brother today, and I'm laying in bed now craving it again.

Raw fish. That's my weird food. And my weakness.

Anonymous said...

The earthquake was indeed exciting. I'm kind of at the north end of LA but we felt it. Rolled and bounced for 20 or 30 seconds. Nice to have some excitement that doesn't involve major death and dismemberment. :)

I don't eat veal either.

The Jane Seymour story was cute.

Jody said...

The only odd thing I have eaten lately was live squid, but that was, like, last week...

Anonymous said...

Sorry, I guess we all drove it a little bit to far. No, we didn't mean to spam you here. We all are fans of her and just want to spread the word. So we are not people who just received a google alert. We really are THAT big fans of her.; )
We'll also stop now cause we think you got it.LOL

Unknown said...

I ate something unusual for me this week. A McDonald's chicken wrap and French fries.
I know its not unusual but I never eat at MCD's and I never eat fried foods.
I was going out drinking and I needed the carbs to soak up the tequila.

Patti said...

My parents fed me fried rabbit and told me it was chicken, tiny tiny chicken. I believed them because I was a total idiot, and when I found buckshot in the meat they had to come clean and I cried for three hours.
I tell my children that tofu is soft chicken
Chickens got the wrong end of the deal...

Anonymous said...

Being a vegetarian is easy-peasy.. you should give it a try (4 years vegetarian, 2 1/2 years vegan)
You don't really feel like you're missing anything, get to try cool new foods you never even considered, eat healthier and just generally feel better (not feeling guilty after eating is nice)
just a little nudge....

Wide Lawns said...

Last night I ate another strange new thing. It doesn't warrant its own post though. We went out for thai and the server told us they had green papaya and we had to try it, so I said I'd love to. YUM. I want green papaya salad every single day from now on. Everyone must try it. I can't believe I have lived this long without green papaya.

Anonymous said...

We just got back from visiting relatives over-seas. One of the farewell dinners included scary homemade sausages, stuffed lamb stomachs and lamb heads. My husband loved it, the eyeballs are his favorite. I stuck with the chicken and potatoes and tried not to barf.

Emily said...

I used to work at a PR firm, and I would DEFINITELY bet you're being spammed by a few people with Google alerts. Probably unpaid interns at that!

Anonymous said...

Jane Seymour was in "Somewhere in Time" with Christopher Reeve, a great movie with time travel.
I felt my first earthquake this year! It was like being in the ocean and feeling a wave lift you, while hearing a big truck rumbling outside. It was very disorienting and about 60 miles from a 5.0 epicenter. The second one this year my desk lamp kept vibrating and for a second I thought it was some heavy construction equipment then realized everything was vibrating.
K in the Sonoran desert

Emily said...

Well, the other day i was eating one of those Special K bars and I dropped a piece on the floor...I reached down to pick "it" up (so yeah I ate food off the floor...c'mon 5 second rule)but apparently my hand slipped and whatever i picked up wasnt Special K was far too crunchy and a little fuzzy around the edges. Too late to spit it out so i just swallowed it...God only knows what it could have been.

Unknown said...

mmmmmm.... Livermush. Fried crispy. I swear.

oh and by the way, I don't like liver.

Beverly said...

i too have never been able to eat lamb or veal. i saw the posters showing these poor things all strapped into these tiny boxes where they can't move and their heads are chained down into the mud and feces. it was awful. peta has some pretty raunchy photos of chickens too. did you know they debeak the little guys while they're still alive? it's absolutely vile.

i can't eat weird foods. i'm an extremely picky eater and after reading fast food nation the BF and i stopped eating out almost completely. after watching an episode of 30 days where the guy goes and lives w/ peta activists - i'm about ready to give up meat too. but then my dad has a bbq and i realize i'll never be able to stop eating steak or his bbq chicken. i'm scottish and if you brought haggis around me i would probably vomit. stomach, gizzards, liver, feet, all that stuff belongs in dog food or in the trash as far as i'm concerned.

Architect Critic said...

Great post. We don't get all the shakers here in Central California that they do in the Southland, but we did have a good one earlier this year. Give me earthquakes over hurricanes or tornadoes any day.

I'm not a big lamb fan, but my mom would mix it with beef and not tell me. I could always tell, but the mixing mellowed it out enough that I didn't mind too much.

That's funny, sallyacious - my brother says the same thing to his kids. I don't think they have figured it out yet.

Heather said...

Veal really is a gross word, and when you pair it with the word cheek.... well *shudder* !

Anonymous said...

Now you should say if you watched the movie or not and if you liked it. :P

Anonymous said...

Hey that's a cute story!!!
I love the part with Jane Seymour!!!
She is so wonderful and down-to-earth and natural ;-)

She's the best!!


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