My family moved to a new house in a different school district on my ninth birthday. It was about a month after the start of the school year, and my brother and I had to go to a new school. Although I was unhappy to leave my old, familiar school, part of me was a little excited about starting a new one. Too bad for me I was placed in the classroom of the meanest teacher in the school. Miss Yocum was built like a bulldozer on two skinny legs, and her mouth turned permanently downward. It was rumored that she wore a wig, but if she did, she chose badly. I think she told the class they were getting "a new girl" moments before I was escorted to the classroom, and she didn't bother to introduce the class and me to each other. Instead, she made a commotion about how she didn't think she could find a small enough desk (titter titter) because I was SO SMALL. So small so small. Can't find a small enough desk. Good grief. She even sent a couple of kids to the storeroom to see if they could find a smaller one. This was not the most auspicious start to a new life. I was shy anyway, and school became a burden.
One day we were informed of an art contest involving a "clean-up fix-up paint-up" poster that we were each to do as an art project. The class would vote on the best one and that selection would go on to a school contest and the winner of that would go to the city contest. If there was one thing I loved to do it was draw and paint, and I really wanted to win this contest. I painted a poster that I really liked, but I knew my chances of winning were slim. Most contests like this were based on popularity, not skill, and if one of the popular kids had a poster that was even a little bit good, he or she would win. I was resigned, but hopeful. I was still pretty new, and there were probably some kids who didn't even know my name. Popularity was not my friend.
When the class voted, I was shocked and thrilled to have my poster overwhelmingly selected. It gave me hope, and made me feel included. And I knew they really liked the poster since it was the only reason I could have won. BUT THEN...Miss Yocum said to the class, "You picked THIS one? That ladder is as crooked as a dog's hind legs." Yes. She really said that. To a nine year old child in front of the entire class. And then Miss Yocum, may she rest in peace, called for a re-vote.
I was sick a lot that year, but so were a lot of the other kids in my class. Over the course of the year I noticed that she could bring the toughest boys to their knees. Luckily, I had other adults in my life that treated me well, and I also had a touch of rebelliousness that helped me assign the horribleness of that classroom to the teacher, not me.
I'm smiling as I write this, but also wondering what would possess a teacher to be so cruel. In any case, this is number seven. : ) (see below)
Now to the chick peas. I was watching Simply Ming (the cooking show) on Wisconsin Public Television — I guess it was a show from last season — and he was putting a mix of dijon, mayo and sambal onto all kinds of (not-vegan) stuff. When he plopped it into a bowl of crab meat, I immediately imagined a bowl of spicy-tangy chickpeas and veggies instead. I admit that I stole the condiment idea from Ming, but added a bit of agavé nectar to it to compensate for the sweetness that the crab would have added. I think I will also use some of the leftover sauce to prepare tempeh this week.
Sambal is a mix of red chillies. You can find it at Asian groceries or sometimes in the international food section of regular supermarkets.
- 3 tablespoons dijon mustard
- 4 tablespoons vegan mayonnaise
- juice of one lime
- 1 tablespoon sambal
- 1/2 to 1 teaspoon agavé nectar
- 2 cans chickpeas (no salt added preferred) or 2-1/2 to 3 cups home-cooked, rinsed and drained well
- 1 cup finely shredded carrot
- 1/2 cup chopped green onion
- 1/2 cup chopped celery
- 1/4 cup raisins or dried cranberries (optional)
- To make the dressing, mix together the mustard, mayo, lime, sambal and agavé in a small bowl.
- Mash or pulse the chickpeas in a food processor until they are roughly broken up.
- Mix the chickpeas, onion, celery and carrot in a medium bowl.
- Add about 5 tablespoons of the dressing to the salad and mix until combined
Here's a great little tool I got for $.25 at a yard sale last summer. It's so handy for getting the juice out of lemons and limes.
The meme — 7 random or weird facts about me — I was tagged by Claire.
1. You can't tell this by reading my blog, but I am only five feet and one half inch tall. You know that song "Short People" by Randy Newman? I've always liked that song.
2. I have read all of Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles as well as her Sleeping Beauty erotic novels written under the pseudonym, A. N. Roquelaure. Long time ago. I'm much more serious now.
3. I love folk dancing and contra dancing. There was a time when I danced three nights a week.
4. I used to play recorders and krummhorns and performed in two early music consorts.
5. I once took a typing test in high school and my score was minus four. I've never forgotten that and I also don't think I ever improved. I passed the class by dong extra credit.
6. I never ate or liked chocolate until a couple of years ago. This is the weirdest fact of all, right?
7. See above.
Here are the rules:
- Link the person that tagged you and post the rules on your blog.
- Share 7 random and/or weird facts about yourself.
- Tag 7 random people at the end of your post and include links.
- Let each person know that they've been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.