Posts Tagged ‘Daylight saving time’

Daylight savings time world

Daylight savings time world (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This is the montra you used to use when you were invited to a cocktail party and didn’t know anyone except the hostess.  This is what your mother told you should begin polite conversation with the opposite sex. Talking about the weather is what you do when you go into the Post Office or the hardware store.  Talking about the weather is what comes up between strangers on a bus or train.  Often, when you walk into any store, the owner/clerk/salesperson opens up a conversation with you about what – THE WEATHER!

We didn’t have any snow or ice storms all winter!  Without the inches/feet of snow in our yards, what reason did we have to call our cousins in Florida or relatives in CaliforniaWinter on the East Coast is a treasure trove of gossip, factoids and is in the news every day, often as the lead story.  I mean weathermen in New England have risen to stardom when we had a couple of severe (as they like to say) winters.  Just think  of the lost career opportunities this past season!

Alright so we did talk about the weather, or rather, we just sort of talked about the lack thereof.   When conversation lagged or out of sheer boredom or better yet the desire to be the one who captures everyone’s attention with a new tidbit, well then you could always drag out September’s hurricane and October’s freak snow fall.  I rode out the hurricane through the night as the wind howled and the rain poured but at the shore in October we only had a very light snowfall so not much to complain about.

Luckily we had a weird Spring or rather a warm extended Winter!  Everybody was screwed up!  The daffodils were blooming in March, the forsythia bushes which are planted along our property burst into a bright yellow line of sentries.  Small talk was revived! Who had early tulips, whose hyacinths were already past, my oh my, chatter again. NOT to mention I for one am still not quite used to this early change date to Daylight Savings Time.  Growing up it was always Spring Forward in April and Fall Back in October. Now we are leaping ahead before St. Patrick’s Day!  Well and that gave a few people something to talk about anyway.

And NOW, we are in the midst of a blistering heat wave.  95++ degrees, God knows how high the humidity is but it feels like about 90%.  Every day the newscasters and weather men are all about the heat!.  Mayor Bloomberg has opened up over 400 cooling centers where you can cool down BUT there’s no smoking and you can’t get a 16oz soda!!  This would probably be the time to stay in my apartment with the blinds down, the air conditioner on high and watch movies….but ah no! We are at the shore where we have been mowing, weeding and watering early in the morning so as not to expire in the heat and so our plants won’t wilt and die.   The cottage is not centrally air-conditioned and our poor little room units are on most of the day – however not all rooms at once because of course this is an old house with old wiring!!!  So it’s like turn off the living room a/c unit and run upstairs and turn on the bedroom a/c.  I think that’s worthy of some casual remarks at the very least.

So as you see, it’s so easy to talk about the weather!  I just did!!

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English: A bundle of collard greens, from an o...

A Bunch of Collard Greens

DON’T be put off by the ingredients in this super winter pasta dish.  Depending on where you are when you are reading this, winter has either been a no-show or you’re cursing that damn gopher in Pennsylvania!  I’m in NYC and we’ve had a “pass”  (so far) on a snowy, frosty, icy winter.  Thank you Mother Nature  for making amends to us for last year’s horrible onslaught of snow! So even though Daylight Savings Time is around the corner as is the official beginning of Spring, I don’t count out the infamous month of March.  It IS still winter and it is cold even if it’s  not freezing.  And that’s why a hearty pasta meal featuring classic winter vegetables is appropriate and tasty.

Coarse salt and ground pepper

3/4 lb of short pasta such as rigatoni or penne

1 TBS olive oil plus more for drizzling

1 large shallot, minced

1/3 cup white wine such as Pinot Grigio

1 bunch collard greens-ribs removed, leaves sliced crosswise

reserved roasted cauliflower**

1/2 tsp. lemon zest

Cook pasta according to directions. Reserve 1 cup of pasta water and drain pasta.

Meanwhile in a medium pot, heat oil over MEDIUM heat.  Add shallots and cook, stirring occasionally, till soft, about 5 minutes.  Add wine and cook till almost evaporated, about 5 minutes. Add collards and cook, stirring  occasionally, until bright green and crisp-tender, about 8 minutes. Add cauliflower, lemon zest and pasta.  Cook until cauliflower and pasta are hot, stirring and adding enough pasta water to create a thin sauce that coats pasta, about 4 minutes.  Transfer to serving bowl, drizzle with olive oil.  Serve immediately.

** Preheat oven to 450 degrees; Toss cauliflower florets with 2 TBS olive oilSeason with salt and pepper. Roast 15 minutes, flip and roast for 10 more minutes or till tender.

Recipe from Martha Stewart‘s EveryDay Food

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