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Here is the link to the parable of stone soup,
a parable most of you know:  

 Soon a villager approached, holding a cabbage that she had grabbed from its hiding place. “Wonderful!” cried the soldier as he cut it up and added it to the pot. “You know, I once shared stone soup with cabbage with the king himself. Of course, my soup had a bit of dried beef in it. That made it extra delicious!” The village butcher arrived with a large chunk of dried beef for the soup.  

Come with me,
below the squiggly,
and share my stone soup with me,
on this cold, cold night.

to set the mood,
the weather report,
and why the weather,
hot or cold,
hits my wife and I
harder than most:

The weather in Wichita,

                12am 1am    2am    3am    4am    5am    6am    7am

Temp (°F)    17°    16°    15°    14°    12°    10°    11°    11°  

Have you ever been in an attic,
in the hot summer,
or the cold winter?

The temperature in an attic
is not much different
than the temperature outside,
just no wind.

In the summer,
that makes it feel hotter in the attic
than it dos outside;
in the winter,
it's a little warmer
in the attic,
since there's no wind.

My wife and I
are living in a room
with no ceiling.

We're looking up at the roof rafters and deck,
just under the shingles.

So our room feels like an attic.

this past summer,
we battled the heat
with a small window unit air conditioner and fans;
now we're battling the cold
with two space heaters,
one filled with oil,
that glows with steady heat,
and a little metal utility heater,
with a fan
that blows,
and circulates the heat around the room.

Hot air rises,
cold air sinks,
and we live our lives
close to the floor,
so the fan is essential.

(We don't have central heat.)

(In January, during my vacation,
I'll put up sheetrock
and pink panther fiberglass insulation.)

Just now,
I noticed my feet were cold;
I've spent a few hours
wearing shoes with no socks.

So I took off my shoes,
rubbed my feet down with petroleum jelly,
to keep them supple and healthy,
and put on a pair of white cotton socks,
over the socks,
I put on a pair of home made fleece booties,
made just a few days ago
by Beverly,
the woman who was my lover
for three years,
between the death of my first wife,
and my marriage to my new bride,
over a year ago.

(Tonia doesn't mind
if I maintain contact
with Bev.)

And then I put my shoes back on.

That feels much warmer.

About the weather:

Have you ever seen a lava lamp?  

In that video,
blue masses of material
rise as they're heated,
and sink when they cool.

That's a very good model
of the Earth's atmosphere;
the air masses move north,
across Wichita,
as they're heated,
and south,
across Wichita,
when they're very cold.

I think global warming
is causing those air masses
to move faster,
so they have less time to
cool of before they hit us,
from the south,
and they have less time to
warm up before they hit us,
from the north.

So they hit us both
and colder
than before climate change.

That's why climate change
is the reason
our warm fronts are hotter,
and our cold fronts are colder,
here in Wichita,

As I understand it.

Someone go ask weatherdude.

But I'm convinced
that global climate change
is the reason Wichita
is frozen tonight,
extra cold.

On a night like this,
hot soup sounds good.

I work at a supermarket,
and I often fix the soup aisle,
making it look neater,
after shoppers have grabbed
hundreds of cans of soup
since the last time we made the soup area look neat.

I once counted;
there are 24 different kinds
of Campbell's condensed
chicken soup,
and another 24 different kinds
of Campbell's condensed
other soups,
not chicken,

But my wife and I
can't afford store bought soup;
we make our own.

We make stone soup,
so to speak.

Let me give you a few examples.

Tonia taught me
to make cheese soup
from ramen soup.

Simply add about eight slices
of sandwich cheese.

It melts well,
and adds lots of protein and fat
to the ramen,
which is only carbs and seasoned salt water.

For tonight,
I took on a soup project
that takes several hours to cook;
so I had to make a short cooking soup,
so Tonia and I could eat,
while waiting for the long time soup.

The long time soup:

In a 16 quart,
stainless steel,
I put almost two gallons of water,
a medium sized, spiral cut, bone-in ham,
about two pounds of pinto beans,
at least three heaping tablespoons of salt,
a pound bag of fresh cranberries,
and the contents of the brown sugar ham glaze
that came with the ham.

Tonia said I should have used only one pound of beans,
and not as much salt,
since the ham has a lot of salt already,
that will cook into the beans.

I think it's pretty hard to oversalt beans.

Tonia doesn't know,
about the cranberries,
and the sweet glaze mix.

It smells pretty good.

Does it sound good to you?

For the short time dish,
that we just ate:

In a small saucepan,
I put a quart or so of water,
a can of USDA commodity canned pork,
about a half pound of pasta shells,
after the shells got soft,
I put in a packet of brown gravy mix,
and five slices of cheese.

It actually reminded me of
tuna salad,
with shredded tuna meat,

But the shredded meat
is pork,
and there's cheese
instead of mayo.

Does it sound good to you?

Even before that,
to tide me over while I cooked the macaroni,
I made myself some cheese and crackers,
with a generic version of
Town House crackers,
each cracker had a dollop of
generic salad dressing version of Miracle Whip,
a small cube of cheddar cheese,
on top,
spicy brown mustard.

This meal,
canned pork,
gravy mix,
spiral ham,
pinto beans,
this is all items we had lying around,
and we put out the effort,
and we made three different meals,
crackers and cheese,
just for two,
just one meal;
the pork and mac,
enough for two meals each for the two of us,
and the ham and beans
is nearly four gallons of 'stone soup',
enough for me,
her uncle Randall,
and her brother,
if he wants some;
enough to feed
three or four people,
at least one meal a day,
for maybe a week or more.

That's the idea behind
the parable of
stone soup.

And that parable
is useful
in describing the difference
between liberals and conservatives
in America today.

The hard line conservative Republicans
simply don't want to give in
to the con of the beggar
making stone soup.

They are willing to let folks freeze and starve.

Liberal Democrats
want to make stone soup;
some of us,
such as myself and my family,
actually play the role of the beggars,
and we're really forced to scramble,
and put something together,
to keep each other warm,
and to have enough good meals to eat.

Other liberals
hear about us,
such as reading about us here at Daily Kos,
and want to help,
and realize that,
other than sending money,
they must at least vote for Democrats,
so that society as a whole
has some kind of hope.

And that kind of thinking,
looking at the big picture,
that's why my wife and I
plan to build a chicken coop in the spring,
and maybe get two ducks,
and eat a lot of duck eggs.

And looking at the big picture,
that's why I often preach,
and beg folks to understand,
that we need to persuade
nearly everyone
to get excited about
surgical sterilization,
for four out of five humans,
for two generations,
until our population
is low enough,
so that it will be easy
to make 'stone soup'.

Check out my 'stone soup' recipes
at this diary:  

 How many chickens,
slowly turning?

How many turkeys,
taking hours to cook?

Do we want young goats?
I've never eaten goat meat,
but I presume young goats are tasty.

Most folks like pork,
so how many pigs will be slowly roasted
over the hot coals,
with the fat dripping down
and flaring up?

we need to feed 5,000 people,
and in my daydream,
these are your friends and relatives.  


I welcome your recipes,
for your 'stone soup'.

And your comments
on the future of humankind.

Read that other diary at that link.

I put a lot of thought into it.

Thanks for reading,
on a very cold night.

Thanks again.

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Comment Preferences

  •  good writing and vivid imagery, well done (7+ / 0-)

    I started reading this and kept reading.  When you got to the weather report you really captured my attention.

    The image of the bare attic rafters and house waiting for insulation and drywall is a snapshot of my own.

    Your description of the winds of climate change, spot on.

    And I myself have been voluntarily sterilized.

    I'll make a point to look for more stone soup stories.

    thank you.

    •  My dear Shuksan, this is the kind of emotional (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      luckydog, blueoasis

      that I'm fishing for,
      when I write diaries and comments.

      I try to pour out my heart,
      so to speak,
      hoping someone
      will simply say to me,
      well done.

      You did that,
      and I thank you.

      I got myself sterilized
      in 1977,
      while I was a virgin,
      and persuaded my fiance at the time,
      to get her tubes tied,
      just to be sure.

      I have no children.

      women my age
      are past menopause,
      and mostly have had
      uterus and ovaries removed.

      not likely I'll ever have children.

      As for stone soup stories,
      that sounds like a good idea for a series,
      but I'm the new blog editor
      of Indigo Kalliope,
      so look for my diaries there,

      I try to work into my diaries,
      the idea of the
      Build a Chicken Coop
      both symbolic and practical,
      to deal with the issue
      of the coming food insecurity.

      Coming to this country,
      already common
      in other places.

      Thanks again.

  •  Brilliant, brilliant, brilliant (5+ / 0-)

    I'm in a heated sublet in Los Angeles, and it's 48 outside going into the 30s tonight which is plenty cold for us, and I'm sending every bit of the warmth I don't need in your direction.  Yes, politics matter, and if you think both of the major parties work from the same core beliefs, I don't want to hear from you about that or anything else.

    -7.75, -8.10; Is it true? Is it kind? Is it necessary? . . . and respect the dignity of every human being.

    by Dave in Northridge on Fri Dec 28, 2012 at 10:51:00 PM PST

    •  My dear Dave, thank you so much. (3+ / 0-)

      How are you doing?

      I've been reading
      about your struggles,
      with the death of your partner,
      just before the holidays.

      My first wife,
      died in March of 2008,
      so I had months of time
      to search for a way
      to cope with the holidays.

      I found a lover,
      the little old lady next door,
      (only two years older than me;
      women my age often look the part
      of little old ladies),
      and I went with her,
      to her adult daughter's house,
      on Christmas Day,
      for their family gathering,
      even though the family understood,
      that Bev and I
      were just booty call buddies.

      Any port in a storm;
      it got me by.

      That may not be helpful,
      it's all I can think of,
      right now.

  •  ?? (7+ / 0-)

    Lucky enough to leave and go camping
    and crabbing in Bodega Bay.

    Business hasn't been great but
    we'll leave that to another day.

    Together with friends we compare
    lives changed, we refuse to despair

    One of our friends, she has triumphed
    over the cancer. Fuck cancer.

    No more chemo, no more sickness
    For 6 months, we bore witness.

    Together we came to Bodega Bay
    For a few days to get away.

    We plotted and we planned.
    Nothing will ruin our plans, be damned.

    Socialists we are, planning what to eat from afar
    Today you do this and tomorrow I do that.
    Diets be damned - Who's watching the fat?

    Together we planned our meals
    Of course relying on deals.

    Today it's a ham, tomorrow it's soup.
    I'll be a good girl and not mention poop.

    The crabs they were scarce.
    It's called fishing not catching.
    The boat didn't break down.
    That is refreshing.

    Thankful for what we have. And thinking about
    those that don't.

    We need to work for the rising tide that
    lifts all our boats.

    bigjacbigjacbigjac Wishing you and Tonia a hopeful New Year. Sounds like you are good with stretching a buck. As one of our fellow campers said yesterday - we used to waste food.
    Now we don't. Amen to that. Nothing wasted. Collectively, we have worked to make this trip with as little money spent as possible. For we all realize - we may not be able to pull this off again.

    Rocky The Cat spent the week inside
    Got home today - No more he could abide.
    Outside! he went - freedom!

    He inspected the great outdoors.
    While the hubby lit a fire indoors.
    No furnace you see, it's a wood stove for heat.
    But in California, winter is not as harsh.

    Rocky The Cat - checked out the scene
    Decided that in the house was the place to be
    In front of the stove it was great but now
    He's curled up behind the hubbies knees.

    To all a good night. May 2013 be a better year
    for all of us.

    if a habitat is flooded, the improvement for target fishes increases by an infinite percentage...because a habitat suitability index that is even a tiny fraction of 1 is still infinitely higher than zero, which is the suitability of dry land to fishes.

    by mrsgoo on Fri Dec 28, 2012 at 11:50:54 PM PST

  •  Duck eggs make good egg nog... (4+ / 0-)

    a friend who is raising ducks
    just a few ducks
    in her back yard
    the ducks lay lotsa eggs
    or at least alot
    for my friend
    so she made egg nog
    with the duck eggs
    and she brought some
    to our gathering
    on Christmas Day

    And the duck egg nog
    was very very tasty.

    When she first got
    her ducks
    she needed a pond
    for her ducks
    to swim in
    'cause she knew
    that ducks like
    to swim
    as part of
    their routine
    and she wanted
    her ducks to be
    happy ducks.

    I had a pond liner
    that I had scrounged
    tho' still fine
    I needed it
    for a project
    and that project
    was done
    so I gave the pond liner
    to my friend
    for her ducks
    so they could swim
    and be happy.

    And the ducks
    seem to like
    their pond
    very very much.

    I think the ducks
    also like my friend
    very very much
    because she
    feeds them
    and she cares
    for them.

    Happy holidays
    and cheers
    and my best
    to you
    and yours
    my friend.


    •  You know, I read enough sad tales, (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      blueoasis, Joy of Fishes, luckydog

      and hear enough sad tales,
      in my face to face world.

      That happy story,
      that helps me a lot.

      Tonia and I
      are planning to raise ducks,
      maybe just two,
      in the spring.

      This story
      encourages me.

      thank you in general,
      for commenting so consistently,
      and giving Tonia and I
      consistent support,
      even in the diary
      in which I asked for advice,
      to persuade Tonia
      to stop threatening
      to divorce me.

      You reacted
      as I had hoped others would;
      so many others seemed hostile,
      essentially saying,
      don't get us in the middle of this!

      Thanks again,
      for your consistent support.

      And thank you for imitating
      my style of writing;
      the old saying goes,
      imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

      Thanks again.

      •  Cheers, my frien'... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        •  Does this improve the flow? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          Duck eggs make good egg nog...

          I have a friend
          who's raising ducks,
          just a few ducks,
          in her back yard.

          The ducks lay lotsa eggs,
          or at least a lot
          for my friend.

          she made egg nog
          with the duck eggs,
          and she brought some
          to our gathering
          on Christmas Day.

          And the duck egg
          egg nog

          When she first got her ducks,
          she needed a pond
          for her ducks to swim in,
          'cause she knew
          that ducks like to swim
          as part of
          their daily
          and she wanted her ducks to be
          happy ducks.

          I had a pond liner
          that I'd scrounged,
          tho' still fine.

          I needed it
          for a project,
          and that project
          was done,
          so I gave the pond liner
          to my friend,
          for her ducks,
          so they could swim
          and be happy.

          And the ducks
          seem to like
          their pond,

          I think the ducks
          also like my friend
          because she
          feeds them
          and she
          cares for them.

          Happy holidays,
          and cheers,
          and my best
          to you
          and yours
          my friend.


  •  Gluten-Free Lemon Drizzle Cake (2+ / 0-)

    With a special surprise ingredient, this gluten free cake stays beautifully moist. To everyone’s amazement it's mash potato!

    For Recipe Ingredients & Method:

  •  glad to see the bjbjbj has a roof. (2+ / 0-)

    will read more when back this evening.
    frozen or not...

    * Join: The Action: End the Bush Tax Cuts for Richest Two Percent * Addington's Perpwalk: TRAILHEAD of Accountability for Bush-2 Crimes.

    by greenbird on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 05:31:39 AM PST

  •  You are a treasure, bigjac. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    My best wishes to you and Tanya for staying warm.  

  •  Beef barley soup (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    It's a cold and nasty day outside with an ill wind, so it's time to turn on the crock pot and dump some vegetables into it.  I had a nice big radish out in the garden, some mongrel hybrid from last year's crop that went to seed, so it got chopped up.  There was a scrap of beef and half an onion in the fridge, and some barley in the cupboard, into the pot they went.  

    Add in some miso paste, garlic, and Korean hot pepper to give it some zip, and the aroma is making it much nicer to stay inside.  

    Come to think of it, the radish did look like a big stone.  

    •  Beef and barley, that's a classic combination. (0+ / 0-)

      I would add a stick
      of real butter.

      And about ten slices
      of sandwich cheese.

      You can add them after the whole thing
      is as done as you want it to be.

      Add the butter and cheese
      after the heat is turned off,
      after the crock pot is unplugged.

      Stir it up,
      it will melt.

      The butter and cheese
      will put you to sleep.

      Thanks for posting
      your recipe.

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