"We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." ~George Bernard Shaw

"Look at everything as though you were seeing it either for the first or last time." ~Betty Smith, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Eric Alder's Monday Photo Prompt: 5-29-2012 The Not So Comfy Chair

You might think you are above us
But you aren't
Your comfy chair isn't a pedestal
It's a target.
I am not sure who this statue is- nor where it is.
But it triggered a visceral response in me.
I don't really know how our politicians became
so de-railed in respecting their fellow citizens,
but I sure as hell am sick of it.
And when I wrote "Duck" I wasn't referring
to bullets, but more preferably some rotten tomatoes.
This "Era of Greed" has gone on long enough.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Magpie #119 Dark Decisions

House At Dusk, 1935, Edward Hopper

Decisions made

By men who will not risk their lives

Only your sons


Monday, May 21, 2012

Eric Alders Monday Photo Prompt 5-21-12

photo by Eric Alder

Oh those days of spirits running free
Jumping over country fences
Chasing your silly puppy dog  
and climbing an old oak tree
Our summers never ended
Bumpy bike rides led to trails
Steep trails led to adventures
Being your friend was indeed splendid
And now as we approach old age
We're still laughing with abandon
Hilarity is alive inside us all
Music plays as we turn another page

For more Eric Alders Monday Photo prompts and for
more photos by Eric Alder go here:

The Yellow Clown Magpie Tales #118

The Circus With the Yellow Clown, 1967, Marc Chagall
Oh my heart oh my head
My feet can't dance
They're made of lead
The girl in blue 
She wants romance 
Cowardly in yellow
I won't take a chance.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

A Knotty Twist on Homemade Bread

I lifted this recipe off the internet and adjusted it
so I could use my homemade bread dough kept in the fridge.
I make this dough every week and have included that
bread recipe below this recipe: 
Easy Parmesan Knots
  • 1/4  batch Artisan Boule dough-about the size of a grapefruit 
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 Tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 clove garlic minced finely
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 Tablespoon finely minced parsley
  • Flour and cornmeal
  • 1 cup boiling water
Sprinkle flour and corn meal on board and dough
Pat dough into a 12"x6" rectangle
Cut dough into 6 12" strips
Tie each strip into a knot, tuck ends under
and let rise for 40 minutes.
Sprinkle a bit of sea salt on top of rolls
20 minutes before pre-heat oven to 450F
with baking stone and shallow roasting pan 
placed below stone. 
When dough is ready and oven is at 450F
carefully slide rolls onto stone and
carefully pour water into roasting pan.
Bake for appx 20-25 minutes
Meanwhile mix garlic,oil, and spices
Remove rolls, brush with herbal oil
sprinkle parmesan cheese over and eat! 


Here's the link to the book:
before beginning-be sure you have a large plastic container to store dough
in the refrigerator-I use a 20 qt with lid bought at the grocery store
you will also need a baking stone, a roasting pan and a rimless cookie sheet or pizza peel
 Basic Master Boule Recipe:
3 cups warm not hot water about 100 degrees
1 1/2 T granulated yeast (1 1/2 packages if you dont buy a jar)
1 1/2 T kosher salt or coarse salt
6 1/2 unsifted,unbleached all purpose flour-measure with scooping and leveling off with knife.
 Very important to do the measuring that way.
cornmeal for pizza peel or rimless cookie sheet
1 cup HOT water 
Measure water and put into big mixing bowl (5 qt bowl) add salt and yeast-
not necessary to completely dissolve.
Measure out flour in another big bowl separately. Add all at once and mix with wooden spoon until completely mixed-no dry flour showing-you can finish mixing by wetting your hands a bit in water and using your ands to finish mixing. DO NOT KNEAD
You are done when there are no dry flour patches showing. Just a few minutes does it. Takes longer to measure the flour than to mix it.
Dump sticky mess into your big plastic container with lid not quite firmly on. Leave for 3 hours or so til doubled and put into the fridge. Leave for at least 3 hours to chill.
After 3 hours you can grab a grapefruit size of dough and quickly put on cookie sheet coated with a bit of flour and cornmeal. shape into a ball by rotating ball of dough in your hands gently pulling top to bottom and making a nice ball- dont worry about how the bottom looks. Let sit on cookie sheet for 20 minute. After 20 minutes turn on oven to 450 degrees.
 Put baking stone on rack in middle and broiler pan on rack below. Preheat for 20 minutes. 
Then place dough onto hot baking stone and pour 1 cup of HOT water into broiler pan.
 Close door and bake for 30 minutes or so-til nice and brown on top AND bottom.
 It's ok if top gets a bit dark. Take out-cool on rack and enjoy. Lots of fun! Buy the book!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Eric Alders Monday Photo Prompt 5-14-2012

The high road
The low road
The road less taken
All roads lead to Rome
Unless I am mistaken.....

For more takes on Eric's photo go here:

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Magpie #117 Memories of my Mother

Tribute to Helen Elizabeth Hauss Worsley
 My Mother died 26 years ago this October 15th.
I've never stopped missing her nor appreciating the lessons she taught me.
One of my fondest and strongest memory of her was when we all went
cabin camping up at Olallie Lake at the base of Mt Jefferson in Oregon.
She was already ill, but was a good sport and came with us. 
Our cabins were rustic and without electricity or running water but
they did have wood stoves to cook on.
So all one afternoon my mother and my brother Paul tended the fire
and made sure our dinner of scalloped potatoes and baked salmon
was cooked to perfection. It was a wonderful meal and is a delicious memory.
My mother gracefully made things look easy and effortless.
We always referred to that meal in the woods as Mothers' Loaves and Fishes dinner.
Happy Mothers Day to all !

Monday, May 07, 2012

Eric Alder's Monday Photo Prompt 5-7-2012

Monday's Crush Hour

Vroom zoom crash bash
Heedless driving slapdash
Reckless endangerment
Unforgiving hard pavement
Aie Chijuajua
Mon dieu
Good grief
What the hell happened
It's a mess beyond belief

Sunday, May 06, 2012

Magpie 115-

image: River Irwell by R.A.D. Stainforth


Tuesday, May 01, 2012

Bite Me...Eric Alder's Monday Photo Prompt 4-30-2012

Overheard conversation between two brothers:
LB: "Ohhhhhh does that shark bite with those gnarly teeth?"
BB: "Yeah they're purty white and sharp as a jack knife"
LB: "But do those sharks hide waiting to fight?"
BB: "No Mac- they wait for that red billowy color that exites."