Thursday, October 24 2019

home, sfincione, movies, and quesadillas

Dear Journal,

Good morning, everyone! Happy Thursday to you. And to my mother who is probably reading this thirty seconds after it was published, happy birthday Mom! The first thing on my to-do list this morning when I get into work is to write you a birthday email, so expect that soon.

Yesterday was one of those days where I didn't leave my house all day. In the afternoon, I worked a bit sitting on the deck, but it doesn't count unless I left my backyard. I didn't even make it as far as the driveway. I usually work from home on Wednesdays, but we didn't go out to eat for lunch and I didn't need to go to the grocery store either, so this definitely was a special case.

Rod woke up with about an hour after me. Marissa stirred, but I told her to go back to bed and offered to get him ready for the morning. Marissa has been staying up late trying to finish her paintings before the end of the week, and I knew she could use the extra hour or so of sleep. I worked on the couch while Rod watched Blippi. Sometime around 9:30 he ran up to me with his wooden recorder and offered to go upstairs and use it to wake Momma up. I laughed, because in that moment I couldn't think of a worse way to wake up. The little devil over my shoulder wanted me to let him - she would go back to sleep and laugh about it later, right? But better sensibilities prevailed.

Around 11, I took a break and heated up some lunch. I had some leftover hutspot and a saucijzenbroodje. I also had a beer. I'm conditioned to expect a beer during Wednesday lunch, whether we go out to eat or not.

I finished up the workday, then sometime around four Marissa and I had a quick sync-up to plan the night. We wanted to make sfincione, and since we were planning on making it last week we still had all the ingredients around. "I just need a yellow onion, so as dumb as it sounds we'll need to swing by Hy-Vee…," I cut myself short while I was rifling around the kitchen looking for ingredients. I spotted a perfect yellow onion hiding under our bananans. "AH! Nevermind, somehow we have an onion."

Marissa took Rod to Home Depot to pick up some supplies, and I fired up a podcast and started making the sfincione. Usually, we hurriedly make this pizza on Friday night after I get home from work. I forgot how relaxing it was to mix the sticky, sweet dough, simmer the sauce, and grate cheese in the kitchen. I kicked off a podcast, then got to work, getting the pristine pizza in the oven exactly when Marissa and Rodney pulled in the driveway.

We had just added the new Lion King movie to plex, and since today was such a cozy home day, I suggested we eat pizza on the couch while watching it. Rod wanted to watch Blippi, so there was some family drama, but soon enough we were all grazing on fresh pizza watching the movie. We had seen it once in the theater, and the second time around seeing it in our own home we felt the freedom to be more critical. "Is it just me or does Mufasa sound less natural?" Marissa asked out loud. "Definitely, " I agreed. "He has a great voice, but it sounds like a monologue, even when he's talking to Simba." The movie continued on to the more well known musical numbers. I pointed out that during the famous "Ain't no worries" interlude, Donald Glover doesn't sing the melody straight. Which is fine, but it bothered me that he even riffed on the first line when older Simba emerges from the bushes. They also really make a meal out of the Timon and Pumba dialog. It felt like a Seth Rogan buddy comedy was laced throughout the whole song.

We paused the Lion King so I could put Rodney to bed. Marissa and I stood on the deck for a few minutes watching the rain, then I did my Wednesday chores while she worked in the basement. Before Marissa went downstairs, she hinted that she would be in the mood for quasadillas later that night. Message received loud and clear, wife. Around 11, knowing she'd be coming upstairs any minute, I fried some cheese quesadillas in cast iron. We were out of Mexican cheese, so I had to make one of them with Mozzarella. I've always teased my wife about how bad she is at differentiating which cheese is appropriate to use for the given meal (e.g. mozzarella on Italian, Monterey on tacos), so I joked that it was the great cheese tasting challenge. "One of these quesadillas is appropriate for the theme - the other is an imposter," I laughed.

After our late night snack, we watched a little more of Zach Braff's boring self-centered loosely Madison based soap opera. I'm talking of course about the movie The Last Kiss. We watched what felt like an hour, but pausing the movie at midnight, Marissa threw a pillow at my head seeing we had 55 minutes to go. The movie is definitely worse than Hitch. At least it's 'soap opera' bad. It's very sad and infuriating, but I have a feeling that it's going to get so bad it will take us out of it and the rest will be easier to watch. The Madison Wisconsin references are at an all time low. At one point, Sarah Bilson asked Zach Braff to meat her at the terrace, and we recognized those weird colorful chairs they had set down by the water. But if that and the capital are the only part of our home we'll recognize this movie, it was not worth it.

That's my time. Have a great day, everyone. If you see my mother around, wish her a happy birthday.