Next Friday night is the Kavanaugh Crawl, the annual holiday party on our block. Each year partygoers visit five houses starting at 6:30pm and ending in the wee hours of the morning (whoever signs up to be the last house is never quite sure what they will be in for). This year ours is the second house. As a result we have entered a whirlwind of cleaning and decorating, which has been good motivation to do get rid of stuff we don’t need and to put into place a lot of improvements we have been thinking about for a while but just never had time for. Those of you who have gone through this process know how much it can grow as you take a critical look your cupboards, closets and other storage areas. This probably explains why Melissa decided to go through all of her cookbooks and give away the ones we no longer use. One is an old cookbook of Chris’ called Indian Cookin (the copyright on it is 1973, which was a time before we started using more appropriate terms like Native American). Coincidentally, Melissa pulled this book out to consider for the Goodwill pile at almost exactly the same time she found a raccoon in our garbage. We have large, wheeled garbage bins that are issued by the city. They are equipped with thick rubber cords on top to keep the lid closed, presumably to keep animals out, though it appears that the raccoons in our neighborhood are sufficiently evolved to be able to open the bins without any trouble. Anyway, Melissa opened the garbage bin in the middle of the day and was surprised to find a large raccoon looking right back at her without seeming the least bit concerned about her presence. You may recall that while we were in Friday Harbor Melissa declared that she was a frontier wife, so when she told me the story about her animal encounter I pointed out that the Indian Cookin book has the following recipe for raccoon:

Clean coon, par boil in plain water with plenty of red pepper. When tender remove from pot, add salt and pepper. Bake in oven until brown.

When I read this recipe a few thoughts came to mind. First, this seems like surprisingly few steps for cooking an animal. Second, since Everett came into our lives I have become increasingly aware of several sayings that seem at best unnecessary and at worst pretty silly. When I was growing up I would often go  with my cousins to Grandma’s house, and when she needed some time to herself she would say “Go play!” in a stern voice. What we did during those times is now called “self-directed play”, perhaps because it didn’t involve any kind of electronic entertainment. Similarly, one “movement” that has come about in response to the many processed foods in our lives is called “single-ingredient food” (also known as just food). So there you have it: cooking up a coon could allow Melissa to live up to her new role as a frontier wife, and would allow us to join a movement. So far neither of these arguments has been sufficient to convince her to try the recipe, but I’m sure it would help if any of our readers could vouch for it.


No comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Powered by WordPress
Natural World RapidWeaver theme by ThemeFlood