Sunday, November 30, 2008
Friday, November 28, 2008
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Grease twelve 8- to 10-ounce casseroles or a 13x9x2-inch baking pan or dish; set aside.
- In a large skillet cook 1 lb chorizo 10 to 15 minutes until cooked through, stirring to break up sausage; drain off fat.
- Transfer to bowl, set aside. Carefully wipe out skillet.
- Melt 1 stick (1/2 cup) butter in the skillet over medium heat.
- Add 2 large chopped onions, 2 fennel bulbs cored and sliced (if not using apple), 3/4 cup chopped celery, and 2 minced garlic cloves.
- Cook 10 to 15 minutes or until tender, stirring occasionally. Add 2 large apples cored and chopped (if using instead of fennel); cook and stir 2 minutes.
- Add vegetable mixture, 16 oz cornbread stuffing mix, 1 cup dry-roasted, salted pistachios, and 3/4 cup dried cranberries to sausage in a bowl; toss to combine.
- In medium bowl combine 14 oz reduced-sodium chicken broth and 2 lightly beaten eggs; add to sausage mixture. Toss to combine. (For moister stuffing, add 1/2 cup water.)
- Transfer to prepared dish or pan.
- Cover, bake 20 minutes for individual casseroles (35 minutes for large).
- Uncover, bake 10 to 15 minutes more or until heated through (165F) and top is lightly browned.
- Makes 12 servings.
Better Homes and Gardens also suggests this blue cornbread and blue cornmeal chorizo stuffing, which is seasoned with sage and gets a little kick from some jalapeños.
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
We make choices throughout our lives - where we want to live, what types of activities will fill our days, with whom we spend our time. These choices are often a balance between our desires and our means, but at the end of the day, they are decisions made with intent. But when it comes to how we want to be treated at the end our lives, often we don't express our intent or tell our loved ones about it. This has real consequences. 73% of Americans would prefer to die at home, but up to 50% die in hospital. More than 80% of Californians say their loved ones “know exactly” or have a “good idea” of what their wishes would be if they were in a persistent coma, but only 50% say they've talked to them about their preferences. But our end of life experiences are about a lot more than statistics. They’re about all of us. So the first thing we need to do is start talking.
Engage With Grace: The One Slide Project was designed with one simple goal: to help get the conversation about end of life experience started. The idea is simple: Create a tool to help get people talking. One Slide, with just five questions on it. Five questions designed to help get us talking with each other, with our loved ones, about our preferences. And we’re asking people to share this One Slide – wherever and whenever they can…at a presentation, at dinner, at their book club. Just One Slide, just five questions. Lets start a global discussion that, until now, most of us haven’t had. Here is what we are asking you: Download The One Slide and share it at any opportunity – with colleagues, family, friends. Think of the slide as currency and donate just two minutes whenever you can. Commit to being able to answer these five questions about end of life experience for yourself, and for your loved ones. Then commit to helping others do the same. Get this conversation started. Let's start a viral movement driven by the change we as individuals can effect...and the incredibly positive impact we could have collectively. Help ensure that all of us - and the people we care for - can end our lives in the same purposeful way we live them. Just One Slide, just one goal. Think of the enormous difference we can make together.
(To learn more please go to www.engagewithgrace.org. This post was written by Alexandra Drane and the Engage With Grace team.)
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Saturday, November 22, 2008
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Sunday, November 16, 2008
SALIERI: It started simply enough: just a pulse in the lowest registers — bassoons and basset horns — like a rusty squeezebox. It would have been comic except for the slowness, which gave it instead a sort of serenity. And then suddenly, high above it, sounded a single note from the oboe.
[We hear it.]
It hung there unwavering, piercing me through, till breath could hold it no longer, and a clarinet withdrew it out of me, and sweetened it into a phrase of such delight it had me trembling. The light flickered in the room. My eyes clouded! ...I called up to my sharp old God, “What is this? . . . What?!...Tell me, Signore! What is this pain? What is this need in the sound? Forever unfulfillable, yet fulfilling him who hears it, utterly. Is it Your need? Can it be Yours? . . .”
Saturday, November 15, 2008
- According to the U.S. Department of Justice, the most dangerous place to be in America is the workplace.
- One in four to one in six workers is attacked, harassed, or threatened each year.
- Instances of verbal violence are triple those of physical violence.
"Anyone in a job that involves extensive contact with the public, especially if limited attention is paid to customer satisfaction. (Witness the increasing accounts of airline passenger rage.) Also, anyone working in markedly bureaucratic organizations where limited attention is paid to employee satisfaction."
- zero-tolerance policies for abuse in the workplace
- staying calm and not giving into one's own anger at any time
- maintaining safe distances with perpetrators of abuse
- avoiding isolation
- allowing for a full airing-out of grievances without necessarily caving to unreasonable demands or reinforcing bullying behavior with compliance
- detailed documentation of and complaint about all incidences of verbal, psychological, and physical violence; no sweeping of stories under the rug
- removal of oneself from any situation that threatens to compromise personal safety
I think it's sad that any of us even has to think about such an issue. But we do have to reflect on this, and talk about it, and deal with it. The last thing any of us should do is stay quiet.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Monday, November 10, 2008
Sunday, November 9, 2008
Thursday, November 6, 2008
"...This patient, despite having an acute abdomen and a CT scan showing air where it should not be (i.e., outside of the intestines, meaning that there is a perforation somewhere), refused surgery, even though surgery was the only thing that could save his life. This is about as close to a no-brainer of a situation as there is in surgery and medicine. Patient with perforated intestine and acute abdomen = operating room. If no operating room, patient with perforated intestine = dead patient. In any case, it was pretty clear that this patient was in denial. At that point, Shadowfax deployed a most interesting technique of persuasion:
'Okay sir, before you go up I've just got some paperwork to complete. Do you have a next of kin?'
'Um, yeah, my sister.'
'Great. What's her phone number? We'll be needing to call her later. Do you have a mortuary or funeral home selected, or should we just have your sister pick one?'
'Um, I don't think -'
'No problem, we'll just have her pick one. Now, in a few hours, you're not going to be able to breathe any more, and if we're going to keep you alive, we'll have to put you on life support. Do you want us to do that, or should we let you suffocate?'
'That sounds bad -- I don't want to suffocate.'
'Right, then, the ventilator it is. But a few hours after that, your blood pressure is going to go really low and your heart will stop. Do you want us to pound on your chest and shock your heart to try to bring you back? It won't work, of course, but I just need to let the ICU doctor plan how to handle it when the time comes. So should we do CPR or not?'
He gave me a long look. 'You really mean it, don't you?' I said nothing, but let the long silence linger. 'You really think I need the surgery?' I nodded. He sighed, and slumped back, resigned,'Well, all right, if you really think I need it...'
The question is: Did Shadowfax go too far?
I would argue that, in this case at least, he did not. Sometimes the only way to overcome a severe case of denial is through extreme bluntness. This case, however, was fairly obvious. Without surgery, this patient was definitely going to die a very unpleasant death within a matter of hours, or at most, a couple of days."
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
McCain supporter calling C-Span from Ohio: "Something very special happened tonight."
From tonight's speech:
"The true strength of our nation comes not from the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals: democracy, liberty, opportunity, and unyielding hope."
-BARACK OBAMA, November 4, 2008
Where were you when you first heard?
What are some of the memories that rushed through your mind?
I will not forget this speech I'm listening to now, which he is giving in front of half a million people in Grant Park, in which he enumerates what 106-year-old African American voter Anne Nixon Cooper has witnessed in her lifetime: the aftermath of slavery; the rise of woman suffrage; the Depression; wars; the Civil Rights Movement; the election of a the first African-American president. I will not forget McCain's gracious and moving concession speech.
Something very special did happen tonight. We made history. It's a shot being heard around the world: David Cameron in British Parliament said something like this (I don't have the exact quote): "To go from the horror of segregation to the election of a black president in just four decades is a remarkable transformation...[showing that the] United States is a becacon of hope and opportunity and change." He has inspired around the world "a renewed love for the United States after years of dwindling goodwill." At last we can look at our international colleagues with pride in our president and in our nation again. At last. Our "first truly global president," elected joyously by a populace ready not only for change but also for transfiguration.
Barack Obama recognized that we, America, are NOT just Joe Sixpack and Joe the Plumber; we are ALSO Maria of Guatemalan descent, Abdul serving in the army overseas, Jen whose parents immigrated from Asia, Jessica whose great-great-grandparents were slaves, Mike in college voting for the first time. I hope we can do as McCain has called us all to do: cherish our being Americans, together, far more than we cling to being Democrats or Republicans, so that we can all help this new president do his absolute best to serve this country. It's time to replace fear with hope - not optimism, HOPE: an active spirit that strives for the best, in the fundamental conviction that we CAN move toward it.
Thursday, 11/6/08, as of 1:30 pm:
Sunday, November 2, 2008
And to the Huffington Post for this:
Addendum, November 3, 2008: A Follow-Up Letter to the Sign Thief
Dear Integrity-Bereft Republican Who Stole My Obama Yard Sign,
Just wanted to fill you-in on what an inspiration you've been since you trespassed on my property and tried to violate my rights and freedoms. I want to tell you about the amazing night we had tonight.
I replaced the sign you stole, of course, so yes, that's more money for the Obama campaign. Oh, and I bought three t-shirts, 4 buttons, and another bumper sticker, while I was at it.
Your behavior only served to remind us of how strong our admiration for Barack Obama really is. We don't just support him. We love him, the way we imagine the supporters of people like Kennedy, Lincoln, Gandhi, and King must have loved them. Our family has supported other democratic candidates in the past, but this one's different. His power to inspire is so great that my 11-year-old begged me to take her to the Obama headquarters in our area so she could volunteer to make calls. And you know what, tonight I did, and she did, encouraged by her little brother (her "trusty sidekick"), who stood by her side. I am immensely proud of both of them and the way they participated in their country's democracy (not to mention warmed to my core to hear her cute, sweet little voice cheerfully calling voters to encourage them to participate in the election tomorrow).
Obama's office was a-buzz with volunteers filled with spirit (as one commenter put it on 538, "This is what happens when a community organizer uses his much-ridiculed experience."). There was a kind of joy in the air that stoked the fire in our hearts. We were proud to be there, to be part of this historic "ground game." Charisma comes from the Greek word for grace - the spirit-filled kind, the kind that moves mountains. This candidate's charisma not only draws people to him but also flows outward from him and bestows on all of us an energy that produces willing, heart-filled action.
I am glad we didn't let your childish actions discourage us. I am glad we left ourselves open to adventure tonight, on a school night, found our way to campaign headquarters, and in our own small way, participated in this inestimably important political process.
Because I want what's best for this country and its relationship with the rest of the world, I hope to see Barack Obama as our new president. I hope the people who constructed the polling machines had more integrity than you, and will not have rigged those machines to default at a Republican position just so they can steal the election by cheating. I hope this country has the courage and honesty to let the people's true choice be recognized. And whatever the outcome tomorrow, I do wish you well, and I hope this country moves in the right direction for both of us in terms of human rights and freedoms, natural and financial resources, and care for every member of society. Despite people who behave as you do, I believe this country deserves that.
Saturday, November 1, 2008
WHY DIDN'T I THINK OF THAT?!
There is a group (on http://www.barackobama.com/), and they have this cute logo (notice oboe bell at bottom of logo) and even cuter description:
"This group is for oboists, baroque oboists, broke oboists, Barack oboists, English hornists, oboe d'amore-ists, and yes, Heckelphone-ists, who support Barack Obama for a better future!"
(There's a Facebook group too - thanks, Dragonfly, for the suggestion! - where I got the above photo. Someone sent me a video of some members of the Facebook group playing "Hail to the Chief" but I can't figure out how to embed it...)
I have to admit, though, that I honestly still can't think of myself as an actual oboist, considering my still-a-beginner-now-and-perhaps-forever status. But to be a Barack Oboist I'd consider allowing myself the promotion!
I felt the energy today as I shared a thumbs-up from my car with a total stranger who was planting campaign signs along the road in New Hampshire.
I think this man has the potential to be one of the greatest leaders in American history.