I guess the beatings have actually begun to have the desired result. And, yes, the beatings will continue until morale improves, but that’s beside the point. What I’m talking about are phone manners.
I’ve called plenty of houses where, when a little dude or dudette answers the phone, it’s with monosyllabic grunts. “Ungh.”
“Hi,” I say. “Is your mom home?”
“Um, okay. Can I leave a message for her with you?”
And that’s the last I or the little dude’s mom will hear of that message. It’s lost in the black hole of pre-adult message taking, most of which consists mainly of hearing a message said and then promptly forgetting that the message or, indeed, the caller actually exist. It’s a hard job, but they feel like they’re up to it.
I know my two older little dudes, Sarcasmo and Zippy the Monkey Boy, are guilty of being that black hole. Exceedingly guilty. However, there is hope on the horizon.
Last week, Sarcasmo actually wrote down a message on a piece of paper. Of course, he didn’t actually tell anyone that there was a message, but I did find out when I accidentally discovered the message, now three days old, under a pile of papers on my desk. It’s a step in the right direction.
The real bright spot, however, is with Speed Racer, the youngest of the little dudes. With him, I’ve been making a concerted effort to model the kind of behavior I want to see on the phone. I’ll answer the phone with, “Jones residence. How can I help you?” And I’m actually hearing those words come out of Speed Racer’s mouth. Who woulda thunk it? And? He also has started taking notes and actually telling us that people called. Of course, he still believes that spelling rules are things that happen to other people, so his notes can be a bit difficult to decipher, but it does give me hope.
Now if we could just get Zippy the Monkey Boy to stop screeching at people when they call, life could be good.
Sometimes, the simple things are the best. Admittedly, as someone who loves complicated electronics more than is strictly healthy, I might be speaking just a little bit hypocritically, but sometimes it’s true.
It’s especially true when you come to food. The simple foods are often called comfort food. And, if the food is easy to prepare, all the better.
With that in mind, here’s Souper Steak.
Now, I don’t actually use steak with this. Mostly what I use is stew meat or fondue beef cubes. Either one. And, since we’re cooking it for hours in the crock pot, it actually comes out nice and soft, no matter how tough it starts out.
Basically, the only ingredients you need are 1 pound of beef, one can of condensed mushroom soup, and either rice or noodles. (I go with the noodles.)
Here’s how simple this recipe is. Get out the slow cooker, toss in the beef and then toss in the mushroom soup. Cover and cook on as low as possible for about six hours. Boom. There you go. Cook the noodles or rice and then pour the beef mix over the top and season with salt and pepper. It’s a great-tasting and exceedingly easy meal.
Yes, the internet is full of silly things. I know this. I revel in this. But sometimes, you can find things wonderful and strange and, when you do (or when I do, at least) you want to share them.
So, guess who I’m going to be sharing with? If you raised your own hand, give yourself a cookie.
There’s a singer named Jonathan Coulton, who has become something of an internet sensation. He’s acerbic. He’s funny. He’s actually very, very good at what he does. And he sings about things most other acts don’t even know exist. He’s also the singer of one of my and my little dudes’ favorite songs. It’s called Re: Your Brains and it’s all about the zombie apocalypse. And it’s told from the point of view of the zombie. Come on. How could you not love that?
So, presented for your entertainment and your edification, here’s Jonathan Coulton singing, live (and ain’t that ironic), Re: Your Brains. Enjoy.