There’s a blue index card on my desk. It’s sitting between my laptop and the back half of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich I should definitely not be eating so close to dinnertime.
It’s a list I made: “List of Things I’m Going to do While I’m Not Working.”
I need to make this list, or I won’t get anything done.
Here’s what’s on it:
On the top of the list it just says “TOKYO.” I’m planning to go there. I need to research air fares. And I need to learn how the subway system works. I also need to determine what I want to see, and what I can skip. And how to order food. And how to deal with sleeping in a file drawer. And where to go when I get lost.
I also want to see Mt. Fuji. And also Matsumoto Castle, Nagano, Minakami, and that place where those cute little snow monkeys take a bath in the hot springs and jump on your head to de-lice you.
I want to see all of these things, so I have to map out a route that allows me to see them all in the most economical manner. I also want to learn Japanese. But if I put all that on a list, I’ll realize it’s going to take two years, and I’ll just give up on the trip, and the list, and go watch Mr. Robot until Christmas. So I just wrote “TOKYO.”
Underneath “TOKYO” it says “THANKSGIVING PIES.” When Thanksgiving was still seven months off, I told my sister I would bring three homemade pies. I was very excited. I was going to do it all in one day and time lapse the entire process for my website. Now Thanksgiving is two weeks off, and I’ve decided store bought is good enough for my family. And I’m only gonna buy two. I’m making my mother bring the apple. Everyone is too stuffed by the time dessert comes out anyway, but that’s partly because whichever family member is hosting always starts serving up the pies no more than fifteen minutes after we finished dinner so we’ll all get out faster.
“E-BAY” – I’m gonna sell a bunch of stuff. Last year I made a few hundred books just peddling books and DVD’s. Putting your items up the day after Thanksgiving is the key. In the last week of November, you could put a sack of toenails up for auction and start a bidding war!
Also, be sure to use “LIKE NEW” in your description, no matter what, because most everything can be argued up to “LIKE NEW.” For example: “SACK OF TOENAILS! LIKE NEW!” Now, you go ahead and tell me how they’re not.
“EGGS” – More specifically “Learn how to cook eggs in a variety of fashions.”
“USED FURNITURE” – I was too vague with this. Now I don’t remember what I meant. Do I want to shop for used furniture? Do I want to get rid of used furniture? Is “Used Furniture” the title of some new ironic series on Hulu? If it is, I’ll probably never watch it. Hulu’s too confusing. I still can’t figure out how to get my Sim Family out of the living room. They just keep dancing, then sitting, then dancing, then sitting.
“TAKE SELF-DEFENSE CLASSES” – Shit, I can tell you right now this one won’t happen. Me in a karate studio learning how to balance on one foot with a bunch of fourth graders? True, the photos would kill on Instagram, but I’m not even sure how to say the word “Sensei.” And I’m too ashamed to ask anyone. I have the same problem with other words too: “oeuvre” “deus ex machina” “Les Miserables” and “Chipotle.”
“LEARN HOW TO TAP DANCE” – Oh, I was watching “Singing in the Rain” when I made this list. This isn’t gonna happen. I can’t even do a cartwheel. I’m erasing it now.
“READ THE BIBLE” – What was I inhaling when I made this list?
“LEARN HOW TO DO YOGA” – Did I even word this properly? I think people just say, “I’m going to yoga,” not “I’m going to go do yoga.” I have never taken yoga. Back in the eighties, if a television character said they were into yoga, the other characters would make fun of them. Those were the best times. To be honest, I’ve seen some of the positions you have to get into, and I’m terribly worried I’ll fart. I think it’s best for everyone if I skip learning yoga. Madonna might be disappointed, but she’s had enough go her way already.
“REORGANIZE THE KITCHEN” – What’s the fucking point? Anna Maria just puts it all back the way it was when she comes on Thursdays. Shit.
To sum up… I’d like to announce that I’ve reviewed my “List of Things I’m Going to do While I’m Not Working.” And it turns out the only ones I’m actually going to do are “TOKYO” “E-BAY” and “EGGS”
Of course, a trip to Tokyo costs a lot of money, and I’m not working, so that just leaves “E-BAY” and “EGGS.”
And I’ll come up with a way to get out of E-bay some other time
I should have just put “EAT OTHER HALF OF PEANUT BUTTER AND JELLY SANDWICH” and left it at that. I’d be done with this stupid list by now.
Huevos Poco Cocido with Queso Sauce
***The key to sunny side up eggs is cooking slowly, at very low heat.***
For the Queso Sauce:
• 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
• 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
• 1 1/2 cups whole milk
• 2 cups mixed Monterey Jack and Cheddar cheeses, grated
• Kosher salt and black pepper
Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in the flour and cook for 1 minute. Add the milk, increase the heat to high, and cook, whisking constantly, until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes.
Remove from the heat and whisk in the cheese until melted; season with salt and pepper. Keep warm.
For Huevos Poco Cocido:
1 tablespoon unsalted butter (can substitute oil)
1 small can (8 ounces) of corn, rinsed
1 small can (8 ounces) of black beans, rinsed
2 English muffins
2 Roma tomatoes, small, diced
2 handfuls of baby spinach
Salt, pepper, red chili flakes
Heat the tablespoon of butter in large pan. Heat the pan until it is just hot enough to sizzle a drop of water. If you let the pan get too hot, the edges of your eggs will start to burn before the whites have fully cooked.
Keep the stove on low heat. Gently crack eggs into pan without breaking the yolks.
Your goal is to cook the whites and, at the same time, keep the yolks runny. Keeping the pan covered helps accelerate the cooking time since your flame is so low. I recommend it.
As the whites begin to set, consider basting them with a little butter on a pastry brush. You can also tip the pan and collect some of the oil and butter in a spoon and pour it over the whites. This will also help them cook evenly.
The egg whites have cooked properly when they are firm. Start checking at about three minutes of cook time. Remove promptly, but gently, from your pan. Season with salt, pepper and red chili flakes.
Toast your English muffins and lightly butter.
Place English muffins, open, on a plate with spinach. Gently lay in two eggs. Drizzle queso sauce over the eggs. Heat corn, beans and tomatoes for about 45 seconds in the microwave and sprinkle over the top. Serve immediately. And just to be safe, serve on a plate small enough to pop into the microwave if one or more of the ingredients has cooled too much for your liking.