now all we need are the antelopes

"Oh, give me a home, where the buffalo roam, where the deer and the antelope play . . . " ~ Brewster M. Higley.

Today’s uniform.

How do you like my bear slippers?

Just for you, I’m wearing my special Kellogg’s breakfast cereal pajamas. I wanted you to feel all safe and cozy before I introduced today’s real topic:




I tell you those Frosted Flakes really pack a punch.

Actually, the real real topic is EATING WILD ANIMALS. Uh-huh. Last week, I ate buffalo meat for the first time.
*pauses for stunned reaction from audience*

I’m not talking about those itty bitty buffalo wing appetizers either. I’m talkin’ furry-behemoth-roaming-the-Great-Plains-on-rare-nickels kind of buffalo. Yes, I seared and slow-cooked a genuine-for-real buffalo roast beast!

photo by Tony Eindfeldt.

And I really didn’t want to. Len brought it home by mistake. I sent him to the South Dakota plains Whole Foods for a beef pot roast. But it was clear from the price sticker it was no such thing. Thinking the butcher may have mislabeled it, I carefully unwrapped the mystery meat. It had already bled through the paper into the plastic bag, and when I saw the dense, large grained, dark bloody red slab I knew this roast was from out of town. It was slimy like liver (which I hate). There was little fat (a good thing, but would it be tough?) — and I considered throwing it outside for our fox.

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mulligatawny, anyone?

Mulligatawny: An East Indian soup having a meat or chicken base and curry seasoning.

It all started because I wanted to try a new recipe for National Soup Month. Of course, I thought of this (that’s Larry Thomas as the Soup Nazi):

Kramer is my favorite Seinfield character, and the Soup Nazi’s Indian Mulligatawny was his favorite soup. He called the man a “soup artisan,” “a genius.” It was because of Kramer that Elaine, George, and Jerry checked out that little soup place to begin with. Of course I wanted to make some. Had the real Soup Nazi, Al Yeganeh, put out a cookbook? No such luck.

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sip slurp slurp: more soup picture books

Thanks for trudging in the cold and snow to drop by today!

The soup kettle’s on at this very moment, and the savory aroma of Mulligatawny has drifted upstairs to my office. Mmmmm, it’s a new recipe, and I can hardly wait to taste it.

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friday feast: happy 75th birthday, elvis!

“Truth is like the sun. You can shut it out for a time, but it ain’t goin’ away.” ~ Elvis Presley

 photo source: rising70’s photostream.

*Lip curl*

A well I bless my soul,
What’s wrong with me?
I’m itchin’ like a man in a fuzzy tree
My friends say I’m actin’ wild as a bug
I’m in love —
I’m all shook up!

Sweet Jesus, can you feel it?

Elvis is in the building!

For someone who turns 75 today, he looks smokin’ hot.

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jam jam jammies, or, flannel becomes you

“I have about 100 pairs of pajamas. I like to see people dressed comfortably.” ~ Hugh Hefner

“The sky was the color of Edgar Allan Poe’s pajamas.” ~ Tom Robbins

Baby, it’s cold outside!

Wintry winds are howling, snow and ice rule the day. Fine weather for polar bears and Nanook of the North. But there’s no need to stand out there shivering and stressing over your New Year’s resolutions, or lack thereof. Come on in where it’s warm and cozy.

Vintage 1950’s Maxwell House ad from Christian Montone’s photostream.

Yes, we’re in our pajamas. It’s the official writer’s uniform, after all. Squeezing out those words in some kind of coherent order is hard work. Might as well be comfortable. And happy. And well fed. ☺ I don’t know about you, but I think better in flannel and fleece, and have been known to exceed earthly boundaries when polka dots, stripes, or glow-in-the-dark elements are involved.

 Illo from “Bedtime Stories” (Birn Brothers,Ltd.). Source: Heart felt.

The resident bears were threatening to hibernate (wonder where they got that idea?) — but I convinced them it would be much more fun to hang out, nosh on pizza, popcorn, salted nuts, cookies, and obscenely expensive chocolate, not to mention the requisite hot drinks: coffee, tea, cocoa, and steamy bowls of soup. Yes, Lord, let there be soup!

          photo by averagebetty.

Something about winter makes me want to laze by the fire, reread Little Women and Anne of Green Gables, watch “Gilmore Girls” reruns, write real letters on real stationery, and take some of those nebulous ideas simmering on the back burner, stir in a fresh batch of whimsy, and cook up some chewy stories. Something about winter also makes it hard to get out of bed in the morning — my soft flannel sheets with plaid trees on them really like me and want me to stay stay stay. When I stumble downstairs to breakfast, I can hear them calling, “Come back! Come back!”

But I have it on good authority that great works of literature have been created by those inclined to recline while writing. Mark Twain was famous for writing in bed. He even liked to greet visitors in his pajamas. Ernest Hemingway wrote in bed when he was suffering from insomnia. Voltaire often spent up to 16 hours a day in bed, scribbling madly. Edith Wharton? She once threw a tantrum because the bed in her hotel room didn’t face the light.

Vivian Leigh in “Anna Karenina” (1948). Source: mondas66.

French novelist Colette absolutely adored her bed — she made it into a raft, where she read, wrote, ate, made phone calls, and entertained guests. Those scandulous Parisians! And of course there was Truman Capote, who claimed to be a “completely horizontal author.” He wrote on yellow legal pads, with his stash of cigarettes, coffee, tea, sherry, and martinis handy.  First and second drafts were done in longhand, and then he balanced his typewriter on his knees, still in bed or on a couch, for subsequent drafts. I imagine he owned a nice smoking jacket or two.

Truman Capote photographed by Arnold Newman

So, whether your “writing uniform” consists of flannel pjs, a wispy peignoir, yoga pants, sweatpants, footed jammies, a granny gown, a terrycloth bathrobe, a Manchester United jersey, a ratty sweater, Scooby Doo boxers, pink babydolls, a one-size-fits-all owly nightshirt, or your birthday suit (hee) — I hope you’ll join us here at alphabet soup for our Winter Pajama Party. We’ll be serving up lots of warming food, fun and gossipy socially redeeming commentary, tasty reviews, pub day celebrations, alphabetica, recipes, culinary tidbits, poetry, random musings, a couple more restaurant adventures, and hopefully we’ll chat with a special guest or two. January is *wait for it* National Soup Month and National Hot Tea Month! Eeee! Let’s sip, slurp and splash! And, I’m getting ready to launch yet another just-for-fun series of posts called “Just Listed.”

  Paulette Goddard in “The Torch” (1950). 

Winter doesn’t have to be cold and barren. A new year with its fresh challenges doesn’t have to seem daunting. Let’s inspire each other to take each day as it comes, express gratitude for what we have, and like Maira Kalman said in her final “In Pursuit of Happiness” blog, SAVOR THE MOMENT (and celebrate with a lovely lemon layer cake).

In our pajamas, of course.

Note: In deference to the one typing these posts, “pajama” will henceforth be pronounced “pah-jay-mah.” Toodle-oo! ☺

All Pajama Party posts can be found here.


“One morning I shot an elephant in my pajamas. How he got into my pajamas, I’ll never know.” ~ Groucho Marx

Copyright © 2010 Jama Rattigan of jama rattigan’s alphabet soup. All rights reserved.