Well, I am DAMN pleased with myself. I decided that I had to do four things today, and I actually got myself together and did ALL of them. Aren't I great?
I needed to do laundry (check), get my bills paid (check), sort out an appointment book (check), and get my taxes done (check!), and every single thing got done.
Sorting out the appointment book is because I waited too long to be able to find the kind I wanted (mainly because I wasn't doing much of anything that I needed to write down), and therefore nobody had any when I finally went to look for one. Thing is, I need the book for purposes of unemployment and employment. Unemployment always wants to know the last date you worked for somebody, and movie/TV stuff always has info I need to have with me...call times, what I'm wearing, emergency number for the agency in case I get stuck in traffic, and that sort of thing. So I really need a page a day type of book, but most of them are too big. Usually I can find them on the street at the beginning of the year, but as I say, this year I was too late. So I bought a small fat noteboook, which will do fine.
And as to taxes, I'm getting back every cent I paid out, to the tune of $671.87! This, of course, says absolutely nothing about my ability to earn money other than that it was pretty terrible last year. But then again, if I'd earned pots of money I would have had to pay pots of taxes. So there.
Meanwhile, for want of anything more intelligent to do, I wandered my way through the back of one of my old cookbooks, the part that has to do with desserts and stuff like that. I usually ignore this, because I'm not a dessert chef at ALL, and New York has about a million wonderful bakeries if I want to get all fancy for the end of a meal. So I was idly paging through the fruit section of my old Good Housekeeping cookbook (circa the early 60s...my, people used a lot of canned soup back then, didn't they?), and came across the following, which I'm putting here in its entirety because it's too wonderful to miss.
"Look around your house for anything that might hold dessert fruits. Let your imagination run wild! For instance, select a:
Basket, on its side
Huge brandy snifter
Old fashioned knife box
Old brass coal scuttle
Gigantic wooden chopping or salad bowl
Brass log holder
Go shopping, and select the prettiest fruits in the market, not forgetting more unusual ones, like kumquats, persimmons, pomegranates, fresh cranberries. Include in your market basket a few of the out-of-season items you may be lucky enough to chance upon - strawberries, grapes, cherries. Now look over the selection of extras - dates, nuts, table raisins, dried apricots and prunes, etc. Stop at the florist's, too, and pick up some choice pine, hemlock, etc.
Then, when you have an hour or so, assemble scissors, knife, clay, etc., and fashion the fruit centerpiece which is to double as your dessert!"
OK, people, I have a lot of problems with this breezy little article. First of all, how many of us have a French horn lying around? Or an old brass coal scuttle or a brass log holder? And what the hell is a mirror plateau? And are you SURE you cleaned all the coal out of that coal scuttle? And the spit out of the French horn? And about those out-of-season fruits...they taste fairly lousy, usually. And what on earth are people supposed to do with fresh cranberries? You can't eat them raw...you'd never get your mouth unpuckered. And then you go and pick up your nice hemlock for decorative purposes. Um, hemlock is poisonous...if you dislike your guests THAT much, why are you having them to dinner? And THEN you're going to stick this stuff in clay? Tasty! "Why, yes, I'd love another of those clay-covered kumquats...and a little more hemlock!"
God bless all the wonderful New York bakeries, I say. None of which are going to feed me clay or hemlock with my dessert.