What I Learned This Week: #159

Monday, August 24 – Sunday, August 30

The Week in Syntax: At the market buying some chicken the counter guy asked if I needed a bag. I was trying to say “No. I don’t need a bag.” I was trying to say “I have a bag.” And…what came out of my mouth was: “I have need bag” followed quickly by “You know what I mean.” Thankfully, he did. My ability to conjugate is evaporating, truly an unexpected side effect of the Covid Era.

The Week in Condiments, with a Trip to Pronunciation: I found a recipe in the NYT for Coconut-Gochujang Glazed Chicken with Broccoli that used it for inspiration to make dish more suitable for packing and reheating through the week. No big stretch on reinterpretation, but instead of serving the broccoli on the side, I just threw every thing together in one pan. It turned out great and, true to the recipe’s title, I got to use one of my favorite unami condiments Gochujang and it really worked well with the coconut milk in the recipe. Fancy food magazines seem to thing Gochujang has reached nationwide popularity. I think that’s a little of the East Coast Elite Bubble showing. While foodies know of Gochujang and where to get it, I wouldn’t say most people have heard of it, and even fewer have used it. I wish more people would know and talk about because Gochujang is a blast to say.

Kroger - Sempio Gochujang Hot Pepper Paste, 17.63 oz

The Week Scenes From an Italian Restaurant While Waiting at the Barbecue Restaurant: I placed my order at the counter of Lucious Q and dropped back to socially distance while they prepped my barbecue dinner. Usually they are very quick, barely giving me enough time to check out some social media on my phone, but I must have hit a dinner rush and I had wait slightly longer than normal. In fact, I waited about 7 minutes. I know, because as I walked away from the counter, the sound system began playing Billy Joel’s Scenes From an Italian Restaurant, a song I hadn’t heard in years. Covid is a sentimental time, so I put down my phone and listened, chuckled to myself when he got to the part about “Brender and Edie”, and was please the finale of the song played as they called my name to get my food. If I’m not going to get live music, I can at least enjoy a personal and random musical moment.

The Week in Being Social: Nights out in the Covid era, involve fewer people, which may not be as raucous, buy it sure makes evenings out easier to plan. I went three nights out this week and hung out with 4 people. The Covid curfew is an artificial, but effective way to end the evening and I was home all three nights before 9. And, bonus, I spent in three nights what I’ve often spent in one. #covidcostsavings. It’s easy to see that these aren’t my wildest times, but seeing my people is beautiful no matter what the limitations are.

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