Lot's Wife and Mushroom Soup

Over the weekend, I saw a television program about torture methods through the ages. One of these was forced feeding of large quantities of salt. This usually made the victim incredibly thirsty, or killed them. I know what this is like. My grandmother was a terrible cook. Everything was unbelievably salty or overcooked. Mushroom soup seemed to be the base of any recipe, and she deemed crisp vegetables undercooked and unhealthy. Her taco salad was of particular terror. As she aged and lost her sense of taste, the taco salad became increasingly salty. We would never be impolite and not eat it, so a large carafe of water was always needed.

I recently found her recipe for the taco salad. It is in a Better Homes and Gardens book, Jiffy Cooking, published in 1967. I am especially keen on the cover type. I need to find this font, or redraw it. I may be seeing things, but this cookbook is heavy on the phallic imagery. There are sausages, pickles, and other penis shaped foods on almost every page. I also like the spread for a teen party. Ice cream and pickles are featured. Here is a word of advice: if you have a teenage daughter and she requests ice cream and pickles, worry. If the sausages, heavy cream, and canned mushroom soup don’t kill you, there is always the cake with multiple balls of butter for everyone.






It's not easy being green

There is a sofa at my grandparents’ house that we all call “the Nancy Reagan” sofa. I like it, nobody else does. I’d put it in my house, but it weighs a ton because it’s a sleeper sofa, and impossible to move. And I have no idea where to put it. My other grandmother had a cousin who was a bastion of good taste, Nancy Lancaster. Lancaster is credited with creating “the English-country” style. My mother and aunts follow this style. So that side of the family would not approve of the sunny and flowered Nancy Reagan sofa.

I found a book, though, that helps me understand how to change my décor to accommodate the Nancy Reagan sofa, The Better Homes and Gardens Decorating Book from 1968. It clearly demonstrates how to use purple and green as a color scheme, or golden harvest as a theme. I particularly like the burnt orange and brown Venetian inspired kitchen. The room for a college student is nifty, too. I can imagine a bong on the shelf and some Jefferson Airplane posters adding some individual personality. The purple and magenta room gives me a perfect way to use the Nancy Reagan sofa.

If I do this, I will be leaving behind ½ of my family. My mother’s side (the Nancy Lancaster side) will never accept this. I will be ostracized or pitied for my awful and tragic taste.