Tigers in the woods

Tigers in the woods

This is one of those weekends that Hip2Dad isn’t playing the El Nino Open. I say, what a great decision! Better to be enjoying a day in the comfort of home than chasing golf balls all day in this oppressive heatwave.

That said, I have to admit that at one point in my working life, I too had a golf club standing in my office. Scattered across that corner of my room were golf balls, each bearing the initials of my beloved boss, carefully carved out in permanent marker.

At random times of the work day, you could find me behind closed doors whacking the living daylights out of said golf balls✌. Don’t get me wrong. I don’t believe in violence any more than I believe them initials should be allowed to run amok in the workplace. But there were times when 5:00 pm was just too far away and I needed to de-stress pronto.

Speaking of which, I wonder why ‘coming home from the office to your kids’ isn’t listed anywhere as a stress reliever. For me, it wasn’t meditation or a vacation away from it all. It was my kids who kept me sane when work was a beech (oops, I’ve done it again, haven’t I? and this ain’t no Britney Spears song either!).

Back then, I did consider taking up golf. That was when Hip2bDad began telling me to stop calling golf clubs ‘golf sticks’. He introduced me to each golf club by name. Meet Dasher, Dancer and Prancer Putter, Driver and Iron! But that didn’t stop me from using a driver to putt. Duh!

And he showed me how to swing a golf club without killing anyone in the process. Good thing we never got to the real game where I had to drive the ball across the grass, I mean, green. Apparently someone drove a ball right smack into our K-friend’s head and he promptly fainted. See, it could happen even to experienced golfers. So don’t even try to imagine what I would’ve done!

Tigers in the woods

At some point, Hip2bDad began to think he saw potential Tigers in our three pre-teens. In fact, he was so sure he signed them all up for golf lessons. So began our suntanning sessions as I played doting golf mom! Soon we all began to look like roasted potatoes even as our sunblock investments went shooting through the roof.

Golf fashion quickly dominated our weekend lives. “Hey, why are you wearing that? Where’s your polo shirt?” our resident golf fashion police could be heard hollering up the stairs. “Belts please! Hey, hey, don’t forget to tuck in your shirt!” No offense but who even wears belts any more unless they’ve been living in the woods since World War 2?! You have no idea how much it pained me to see my poor kids dressed up like fusty old men with golf sticks!!

Never could understand golf fashion. Which is why it’s probably a good thing I never signed up for lessons myself. One look at Mrs K-friend in long-sleeved polo shirts and covering herself 머리부터 발끝까지 (from head to toe) in sun-protective garb and I was like, no no no, I ain’t wearing no hasmat suit!! There’s just no way!

To top it off, they even have golf fashion police patrolling the course in case you decide to get all New York Fashion Week-like. My kids got told off a few times but they just shrugged and carried on. Go kids!! Honestly, who the heck cares? It’s only a game! Or a work stress reliever, if you’re like me?

When we can’t get enough

When we can't get enough

As I was saying, I make it a point not to order at a restaurant anything that we can easily cook at home. I consider it a waste, of money mostly, when I can order something fancy that I don’t or can’t cook at home instead.

Of course, there’re those times when we do chance upon something amazingly delicious (by picky eater standards) and we really, really want to stuff ourselves silly.

Like this chicken place, for instance. The first time we eat at any restaurant, we’re always careful not to order a lot. Just in case things don’t measure up to the picky eaters’ expectations. So I ordered just two servings of chicken wings. Each serving came with 8 – wings?

When we can't get enough

Seeing these, we were like, “Man, these have got to be the smallest chicken wings ever!” Immediately they conjured up images of the Christmas turkey Mickey brought home to his family in Mickey’s Christmas CarolMickey's Christmas Carol. That was how big of a turkey he could afford on the piddly pennies Scrooge paid him. A very sad bird indeed.

When we can't get enough

“Can we even call these chicken wings? They’re so tiny they probably came from premmie chicks!” my kids howled. Okay, let’s just call them ‘winglets’ then. So that’s 16 winglets total for the 4 of us which works out to be, er, 4 mouthfuls each. Which even if you’re not a young adult with a ravenous appetite is still pretty pathetic.

Dinner just became a snack.

What’s even crazier is that these chicken wings were crazy delicious!! As in licking-our-fingers-shamelessly-in-public crazy! I hope no one saw me. That’d be really embarrassing for someone who even eats her grapes, nuts, bananas, whatever with chopsticks or fork.

We would’ve ordered more but the menu warned that they’d only start frying on order so be prepared to wait 15 minutes (or something like that, I don’t really remember). We didn’t want to wait. So I called for the check.

Another surprise! I fell off my chair when I saw the damage. 너무 삐씨요! I swear I heard my credit card groan. Still we couldn’t stay away and went back a couple more times. By then, my credit card was really starting to protest, quite loudly. Small or downsized servings + big price gets the boot.

Okay, enough is enough. It’s off to the kitchen to churn out a ton of life-sized chicken wings ourselves. There, this should be enough for a real meal. Not to mention that no one can see us licking our fingers at home.

When we can't get enough

Knowing me, there’s no stopping at just one version. These are two of the many versions that have graced our dinner table since ✌. Wait, what was that? Did I hear my credit card laughing? Ho-ho-ho! Merry Christmas!

When we can't get enough

The things we can cook with our eyes closed

The things we can cook with our eyes closed

Someone just sailed into the office and announced that he and his girlfriend had had sandwiches for lunch. “Can you believe how much I paid for two sandwiches?”, he lamented, shaking his head.

I looked over at him sadly. I could’ve told him right there. You could’ve gotten those sandwiches for free. If you’d watched your mom and learned how easy-peasy it is to slap a sandwich together.

The things we can cook with our eyes closed

Sadly you kids don’t pay attention and now you’re paying through your nose for something you could’ve done in 5 minutes flat and impressed the heck out of your girlfriend. Because she probably thinks it’s rocket science and you needed some fancy recipe to put it together.

But I held it all in. After all, there’s my girl friend, a mother of two young men, who never fails to order some variant of an egg dish whenever we eat at Chinese restaurants. Steamed eggs. Half-boiled eggs. Loaded omelet. You name it.

The things we can cook with our eyes closed

It’s always been a mystery to me. When our kids were little, yes, I could see why. We had to have some child-friendly dishes so we wouldn’t set them on fire with our grown-up spicy food or make little porcupines out of them with those pesky fish bones. But now? I consider it an insult to our college-age egg-frying experts!

Then there’s those other things me or my kids can cook at home, in our pajamas, with our eyes closed. Like those big breakfasts with the even bigger price tags.

The things we can cook with our eyes closed

Which takes, oh, 15 minutes max to assemble. 진짜 (seriously)! And if we were ordering this, we would’ve had to send the eggs back to the kitchen to have them “WELL DONE, not runny, GET THAT??”. And no one wants to start their day barking at people who can’t get that a sunnyside-up may look all bright and cheery but it’s not for everyone!

True, our food don’t always look as good, presentation-wise. I mean, good looks are great especially if you haven’t had to resort to plastic surgery to get there. But hey, there’s more important things in life than good looks.

Like the taste, for instance. When I was a kid, I would jump for joy at the very mention of eating at a restaurant. Restaurant food always meant delicious food that cost a lot of money, and that you didn’t get to eat at home. Always. I can’t say that’s true any more. Sure it’s still fogging expensive but as for the food being always delicious, well, I’d say 별로 (don’t hold your breath)!

And getting to control the ingredients, now that’s always a great way to pacify the occasional control freak in me.

And getting to make and eat a ton more than the piddly portions the restaurants serve us, now that’s a definite plus, and definitely a post for another day.

Oh, just one thing. Yes, I realize I just said fogging on a family-friendly site. Since my kids are pretty much grown (or so I’d like to think), I’m going to exercise my freedom to use some of the more refined vocabulary I picked up from my American education. Rest assured, I don’t use them in real life or in front of my kids unless someone cuts me off in traffic or can’t get my eggs done right.

Friend and flock

You know those deep, meaningful conversations you have with close friends? Don’t you just love those? Yeah, me too!

They can be quite refreshing. For one thing, you don’t have to worry about being judged because there’s no way your close friends are going to judge you, right? *ponders* 😐

Well, they know you so well you can practically say anything and know you can get away with it, right? *ponders* 😔

Yeah so, we had one of those while driving to dinner at LK.

Friend: I haven’t been to LK for quite a while because A (a mutual friend) prefers to eat at S.

Me: Yeah, but the food at S isn’t any good.

Friend: What do you mean, it’s not good??!! It’s always crowded!

Me: So?!! That doesn’t mean their food is good.

Friend: What are you saying? Why do you think it’s so popular? There are always long lines.

Me: Because people have poor taste?!!

Silence.

I was going to add:

Because people are like sheep these days. All it takes is for one person to say this is tasty, or the internet to say that is delicious, and the next thing you know the flock is rushing there regardless of whether the food is actually good or not. Peace out! 😉

Monday morning ramblings

I’m in a rambling mood today, sorta so just ignore me while I ramble away…

So here’s the story about last weekend at the grocery store. A staff was loading up the shelves. He had boxes and a cart along one side of the aisle. I was walking past to get to the other end of the aisle when two bottles of sauce (looked like mayo) fell off his cart, crashed onto the floor and some of it splattered onto my clothes, face and hair. I got a new look instantly. A mayo makeover, if you will…

… and last night, did anyone see the super moon? We got pretty excited about it earlier in the evening but when 7:00pm rolled around, we were getting ready to sit down for dinner, so we figured, forget it, growling tummies get first priority, we can always catch the super moon on live feed later. Well, it wouldn’t be live any more but …

… yeah, so scientists found water on Mars, liquid water that flows on the surface of the planet in spring and summer, a sure sign of life, but then they determined that water to be too cold for anything on Earth to survive in. Agreed, Earthlings may not be able to survive on Mars, but that doesn’t mean no other life forms can. For the most part, humans are so self-centered they think they’re the only ones inhabiting the universe. I’m pretty sure there’s no shortage of aliens checking us out too *waves back*. There IS definitely life on other planets, the Buddha said so 2,600 years ago, and I believe that. Just because we can’t see them in the pictures that space probes beam back doesn’t mean that they don’t exist…

… and in other news, I have just eaten half a grapefruit the size of a personal watermelon, and it was the juiciest thing ever, a far cry from the slightly bigger than an orange-sized ones that I have to squeeze to death for every last drop of juice that it’s worth. I guess it helps to have the world’s orchards in your backyard, eh! I’ve got a 10lb bag of these delicious babies in the fridge, gonna take my time to work through them.

Okay, that’s all the rambling from me today. Have a great one, folks!

Do you believe your fortune cookie?

Do you believe your fortune cookie?

So there’s this air of mystery when that fortune cookie arrives at your table after your tummy is all happy and round, and you’re just about ready to move on to something a little different ala what my fortune holds.

Yes, that would be me. I love the little tingle of excitement that comes with snapping open a fortune cookie. I’m rubbing my hands together and going – okay, okay, let’s see what it says, come on, come on – as my clumsy fingers tug at that little strip of paper stuck to the one half.

I know. The things that get some people all excited, right? It’s crazy!!!

So finally, my fingers are ironing out that little strip of paper, wherein lies my fortune, my expectant eyes squinting to make out that tiny red (well, it used to be red) print, and… and it says…

You will always be surrounded by true friends.

I’m like, WOW!

I lean back and begin to pick apart ponder this powerful statement.

True friends.

True friends?? *inserts cynical laugh* Always??

Umm, let me see, I’m trying to count here. In my books rolodex, true friends are something of pterodactyls, so to imagine myself being surrounded by them always is kinda… stretching it. But hey, maybe things are looking up and true friends will come a-flocking, eh, Mr Fortune Cookie!?!

And with that, here’s my million dollar question for you. Do you believe your fortune cookie? Do you believe what it tells you? Has your fortune cookie ever predicted something that actually came true?

Strange and stranger

The world is full of strange people, or to be more precise, people who strike me as strange. For instance, I’m enjoying a quiet coffee at the reception of a gym (not my regular gym) and minding my own business when a man comes up, stands over me and loudly asks if the person sitting across the coffee table from me is my mother. I didn’t answer him right away.

Instead I look up at him, giving him my signature once-over!! Granted he looks like your friendly neighborhood older person but still, how is it any business of his who that woman is? Not getting the response he expects, he repeats his question in the same demanding voice, to which I give him a do-I-know-you look and go, “Do you know her??!” I mean, so what if she is my mother? and so what if she isn’t?

Okay, maybe I’m just being difficult.

Not my fault, meeting a strange and nosy person first thing in the morning does this to me.

Unable to get a confirmation from me, he goes on to assume that she is (wrong!), and continues his line of questioning. So how old is she? Silence and a grin from me. So he starts guessing. Is she in her 60s? Silence and a grin. I wasn’t being rude or anything. I didn’t glare at him. I just didn’t say anything, and with people like that, it’s okay if you don’t answer, they won’t even notice, they’ll keep the questions coming from other angles and when they get tired of that, they go on to talk about themselves.

Actually more like brag. He tells me he’s 75, his wife is 73, and that they work out at this gym. Well, if he hadn’t annoyed me with that line of questioning, I might’ve jumped up enthusiastically and clapped, that’s great, I’m impressed! But he’d gotten me all sorta garlicky so I just nodded.

He goes on to lecture about what exercises he does. I couldn’t resist a big smile. I’m often amused listening to people like him. In my mind, I’m conjuring up images of him turning left and right, posing for selfies in his gym gear perched atop the gym equipment and posting them all over the internet LOL.

Pretty soon, I’m savvy to his weekly gym routine. Oh, I work out here for 1.5 hours 3-4 days a week, the other days of the week, I play golf, and my wife works out for 2 hours 5 days a week. We live across the road, it’s so convenient, we’re here every day. Oh man, as if I need to know all that! He laughs as he tells me, we have all the time in the world, we only eat and exercise… at which point, I’m LOL-ing real hard inside.

Yes, I know all about the eat-and-exercise syndrome. People here tell themselves it’s okay to pig out ’cause heck, they exercise – so no guilt, no worries, just eat. Then they go jump on the treadmill for 2-4 hours a day to ‘work off’ those calories they’ve just put on (you know, like filling up a wheelbarrow with rocks, then emptying it all out again) and they’re convinced it’s all good. Wokay, I get it LOL!

As it turned out, ten minutes was all it took me to know more about him than I do some of my relatives even. I really didn’t have to say much. He did all the talking. All I had to do was paste a big grin on my lips. Seriously though, now that I have all this information about this complete stranger, what do I do with it? 😏

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