These are the thoughts of a Texas transplant in West Michigan who makes his living as a newspaper reporter by evening, and a struggling novelist by day.

Friday, November 25, 2005


alan and krista came into the office tonight.neither was working and at first i thought it wasn't odd they came in. krista asked about hogeboom being booted off survivor and commented on how it happened on both our days off since we had been on shift during all the previous survivor episodes.

anyway, alan says, "come here" and they both started toward hayden's desk. melanie was over there, too. they called eric over. j.r. stayed at his cubicle. i mumbled to alan, 'is it was i think it is?" he said yes. krista announced that several hours earlier, alan proposed to her while they were putting up the xmas tree. she said she was full of sap and dirty. he handed her a new xmas bulb with their names on it. she thought it was weird and looked back. and there was alan on one knee.

al this time, she kept trying to guess where and when alan was proposing to her. i guess he picked a time she was not expecting. perfect thing to do. that's the surprise part.

they're planning a december 2006 wedding.
it's good to see friends happy and in love.

Thursday, November 24, 2005


geez, it's been almost a week and i haven't written about our tamales experience. i need to get it out now. it happened sunday here at our house. we had krista and alan and peg come over and make them. it was a nice experience for them (who have never done them before and me, too).

krista came over saturday with the meat and we put it in the slow cooker overnight. by mid-morning it was falling apart and tasting great.

they all cme over after lunch and we got to work on the stuff. well, the women did. alan and i spent some time in front of the tube watching dallas trounce the lions.

but when it was time to make the dough, i went back in and started helping. it was different for me. we made the dough for the tamales from a flour-type of mixture and added the lard. i am not used to it. i'm used to it being a dough-like mixture and then adding the liquified lard and mixing it together. so it was a lot of trial and error. we made three patches of dough. i think they got progressively better. ultimately, though, i think we should have put in more lard. even if it had more lard than necessary, all we had to do was put in more mixture.

the beef filling was great. i could have eaten that all day long. we did a good job with that. i think on another occasion, we will work a little more with the dough.

we did have a slight problem with the c0oking part. too smoky. some of the corn husks were in bad shape and the steaming process caused them to get really burnt. we had the nice smell of burnt husks all over the house.

still, i've eaten quite a few of them and they've been good. i think we can make them even better.

right now dawn is making chicken tamales with the extra dough and some chicken we made sunday. i love chicken tamales. i remember when i first had them when tia gloria made them about five years ago. they were awesome. so spicy.

wel, thanksgiving today. it's snowy and damned cold. already taked with mom and dad. they're going over to tia gloria's house (along with the sibs0. i'll call them a bit later on. also going to call the aunts and uncles on dad's side, too.

we don't eat until nearly 4 p.m. at mary ann's house.