Monday, November 18, 2013

Pickling and Nazi assassinations

It's been a pretty quiet week or so which accounts for my not updating. This will honestly be a pretty short one as well as I'm currently updating out of guilt for not updating recently more than because I have actual substantive news to report. I can however think of two small things to write of, neither of which warrant their own post (yet), but perhaps can buoy each other in tandem.

1) I've been doing a bit of pickling lately. I have all the canning equipment leftover from the great Apple Butter Onslaught of 2012 (otherwise known as wedding planning). I also, as luck would have it, have a very bountiful farm share this year. The only thing keeping me from canning more things is the fact that I don't particularly like pickles. Never have. Luckily, what would be an insurmountable barrier to pickling is solved by being married to a lover of all things pickled. So far I've pickled green tomatoes and am waiting on some pickled garlic and habeneros. (Side note: the main lesson I learned from the pepper pickling is that you shouldn't chop up a pound of habeneros without gloves on right before you plan to put your contact lenses in.) I also currently have some cabbage brining away on my counter in hopes of becoming sauerkraut (which incidentally, I also don't care for).

Aside from not particularly being excited to try the results of my labors, I must say I kind of enjoy the fine art of pickling. There's a certain chemistry to it, or in the case of the sauerkraut, I suppose some biology. Also, as the lady in my canning recipe book described it, there's an industrious immigrant feeling that comes along with using all your upper body strength for 20 minutes to squeeze the water out of cabbage.

3 more weeks til pickled peppers. 
2) My book club read Laurent Binet' HHhH a couple of months back. At the time I was a little overwrought with WWII after spending the summer writing a book on the Holocaust as well, but after some more distance I can really appreciate it more as being an incredible book. It's a novel, but almost a memoir. At the very least it's a novel with a very strong anxiety about getting all the facts right. It deals with the results of Operation Anthropoid where two parachutists (a Czech and a Slovak) attempt to assassinate Nazi leader Reinhard Heydrich.

Anyway, the author was doing a discussion at a bookstore downtown on Saturday night, so Sam and I, along with a girl from my book club went to check it out. He was very endearing in person and not at all fitting the assumptions I had made about someone who would spend 10 years of his life researching Nazis.

I hopefully will have more (interesting) things to write about later this week, but in the meantime, if you anyone wants an autographed copy of HHhH or a jar of pickles in their Christmas stocking, now's the time to put in your orders.

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