Martha Stewart’s Chocolate Crackle Cookies OR “If You’re Wimpy and You Know It, Clap Your Hands”

A 22 year old man died trying to swing by a rope from Utah’s 110 foot tall Corona Arch. The Corona Arch is a natural landmark made of sandstone and shaped like, you guessed it, a giant arch. People climb up to the top, secure a rope to it and then jump off with the other end tied around their waist. The idea is when the rope reaches the end of its slack, the person attached at the bottom will swing wildly back and forth beneath the arch, suspended in mid-air like a human pendulum. But the guy who died miscalculated the amount of slack he needed on his rope. So when he jumped off the Arch, he just plowed straight into the ground. And that’s that.

When I read that story, I realized something wonderful. I realized that nothing like that could ever happen to me because I am a complete wimp.

I don’t mean to say that I’m a coward. I have courage. I just know where I don’t care to apply it.

The reason I would never jump off the Corona Arch is not because I’m afraid. It’s because I know me! I’d be that one hapless ninny up there who miscounts the number of feet in his rope, jumps off the top thinking, “Look at me! I’m really out of my comfort zone!” then slaps straight into the ground, ending my life at the center of a giant dust cloud just like Wile E. Coyote.

Don’t feel sorry for me. It’s wonderful when you finally accept being a wimp as part of your natural human make-up. I no longer have to pretend I’m okay with things that make me afraid. Like the iron. I hate the iron. Do you know how hot those things can get? You might as well keep a fuel rod from Fukushima under your sink. Most people don’t worry about using the iron. But again, I know me! Enough time around one of those things and I’m sure I’ll find a way to accidentally burn off my appendix.

I’m a wimp and I’m ok! I no longer have anxiety over it. Meditation and has freed me from it. Meditation and the little blue pill I have to take every morning. So what if I run from danger? Lots of people do that. Don’t ask me who right now because I can only think of C-3PO, and he’s not actually a person.

But they’re out there! Lots of them, all waiting a full three hours after eating before they get in a pool, and hiding in the basement when the stove needs to be re-lit. So what if I’ll never jump off The Corona Arch with a rope tied around my waist? I do other things well. I’ll keep to them. And I’ll also keep wearing shoes whenever I’m on shag carpet, just in case there’s a scorpion. I know me! It’s just a matter of time before one shows up. I plan on being prepared. And that’s that.

Click here for the recipe for Martha Stewart’s Chocolate Crackle Cookies

Rocky Road Cookies (Part of the “Keep Your Man Employed” Series)

Chocolate chips, walnuts, pecans and marshmallows melted together with a rich, dark, decadent bittersweet chocolate-infused batter.

The plan was to keep MG gainfully employed forever by regularly flooding his workplace with homemade cookies. But now I fear my delicately-constructed scheme may collapse before my very eyes.

MG is home sick!

(By the way, I wanted to take a picture of MG in bed looking like hell this morning and post it here for you all to see, but he threatened to lick my iPhone top to bottom if I did.)

It’s frustrating when the person you love is sick. There’s only so much you can do, and most of the time the invalid in question would rather be left alone anyway. Nevertheless, I fulfilled my obligations as healthy boyfriend. I performed all the required acts…. the “concerned sad frown,” the “shoulder pet,” and the “Florence Nightingale bedside sit.”

Then I got to the part I really love… the “Sick Person Supermarket Sweep!” Of course, you grab everything your loved one requests, but then you add a couple of fun surprises to maintain their spirits and keep their minds challenged. These items must be under ten dollars and totally useless to anyone with a fever of less than 100. If you’re a kid, that means mom or dad brings you home bubbles, kazoos, playing cards or paddleballs. For MG, I picked up a book I knew would keep him engrossed for the entire afternoon… Hot for Fireman!

Katie Dane knows better than to mix business and pleasure, but her new bartender, Ryan Blake, is simply irresistible.

Ryan, the sexy heartbreaker of Station One, is determined to rejoin the force. Tending bar in the meantime seems like the perfect idea, especially when it means he can spend his nights working next to his sultry new boss . .  if only the bar didn’t keep catching fire!

Throw in a grizzled career criminal,  a Fireman bachelorette party, and a million-dollar money pot, and suddenly playing with fire never seemed so much like falling in love.

MG’s face didn’t convey the level of gratitude and pride you might expect from a person just presented a book entitled Hot for Fireman!  But I’m sure that’s just the sickness talking.  If he’s still sick tomorrow, I’m going to bring him all my Knots Landing DVDs and is he’s still sick the day after that I’m going to bring the VHS tape I bought off E-bay featuring every single Erica Kane wedding from All My Children.

If that doesn’t get his ass back to work, I don’t know what will.

Rocky Road Cookie Recipe – Click Here!

Browned Butter Sugar Cookies (Part of the “Keep Your Man Employed” Series)

When telemarketers call my home in the middle of the day and cheerfully ask, “Hi!  May I speak to Mister or Misses Green?” I usually shout back woefully, “Misses Green has been dead for eight days now.  Who are you… and why do you keep doing this to me?”

After a momentary gap of dread, the telemarketer begins desperately apologizing in clumsy stammers and half-sentences, and when I feel like they’ve suffered enough I interrupt them by saying, “You sound hot.  What do you like in the bedroom?”  Before they can recover, I hang up on them.

The tingling afterglow I experience from indulging in little weekday funsies like this has convinced me that I could be a stay-at-home husband for the rest of my life and never be bored.  Why did I spend so many years convincing myself that the keys to a fulfilled life were challenging my creative limits and building myself a robust career outside of the home, when it’s just as rewarding to watch Franklin and Bash all day in my bathrobe while I’m drinking iced mochas and painting my nails?

Continue reading “Browned Butter Sugar Cookies (Part of the “Keep Your Man Employed” Series)” »

Cornmeal Thyme Cookies (Part of the “Keep Your Man Employed” Series and the “Pictures of Paralyzed Chihuahuas” Series)

When Michael sent me this picture earlier today from the Robot Chicken animation studios, I texted him immediately and asked if this guy was going to mind having his face on my website.  Michael responded: “Oh, no.  Kevin is an attention whore.  He’d LOVE to be on your site!”  And so for Kevin the attention whore, the road to fame and notoriety begins here today at

Michael tells me a lot of stories about the characters he works with, but I rarely see these people in person.  I may meet them at a wrap party or a Christmas party, but months will pass in between, and I’ll inevitably forget which face belongs to which name.  It’s a character flaw, but it isn’t limited to Michael’s co-workers.  I can’t even keep track of my remote control.  The other day I found it on top the cat box out on the balcony.

So when Michael texted me last week, simply saying, “Olive is here!” boy did I feel the pressure.  I knew he was waiting for an appropriate response, but I hadn’t a clue who “Olive” was.  The few of Michael’s co-workers I have managed to burn into my sickly memory banks I’ve done so by associating with things I’ve learned about them or moments I’ve shared with them:  “Joy who’s getting married,” “Tommy who lives downtown,” “Trish who used to work at Starbucks,” “Jeanette who I got drunk with,” “Dan who has the blog,” “Sarah who I made hot dogs for that one time.”

But who the hell was Olive?

I decided to roll the dice.  It was clear Olive didn’t work with MG or he wouldn’t have felt the need to celebrate her appearance.  Instead, I figured it had to be a loved one associated with someone at work – the kind who is occasionally brought into the office for a special guest appearance, to be coddled and adored over while work goes completely ignored for twenty to thirty minutes.

So I texted Michael back, “Oh… Olive!  Is that the baby… or the paralyzed chihuahua?”

I figured I might be able to trick Michael into thinking I at least almost knew who Olive was by narrowing it down to two possible options.

But I was wrong on both counts.

Olive is a pug… a pug with four fully functioning legs.  Boyfriend points denied.

If we’re out together and someone Michael recognizes waves at us and begins an approach, I quickly lean in and whisper, “Do I know them?” and Michael either assures me I don’t, or gives me a lightning fast bio so I don’t make an fool of myself, just like Emily Blunt did for Meryl Streep in The Devil Wears Prada.  “That’s Rick.  We met him at Comic-Con.  He lives in the hills.  He does calligraphy.”

And for that, but not that alone, I will always be grateful to Michael.  And I will always make him cookies to share with his co-workers. Even Kevin the attention whore.

By the way… I wasn’t making up the paralyzed chihuahua.  You can see a picture below. You ought to watch the way that baby can get around on those back wheels, coasting and swerving through all the legs at Robot Chicken and snapping up every dropped cheese puff in sight!

I can’t decide who I like the most… paralyzed chihuahua, Olive the pug, or Kevin the attention whore.  But one thing is certain. Now that they’re all on my website, I’ll forever have a short-cut to remembering which is which.

Click Here for Recipe for Cornmeal Thyme Cookies from Martha Stewart

Cheesecake Marbled Browines Recipe 2012 (Part of the “Keep Your Man Employed” Series)

Today, I sent my man off to work with a double batch of these babies.

You may be saying to yourself, “But Gary… you go to such great lengths in the kitchen, and then you let MG take all those brownies to work with him?”

And I’d answer, “yes.” Because when the hubby goes to work with cheesecake brownies made from scratch, his stage (he’s an animator) becomes the focal point of the production offices.

When his stage becomes the focal point of the production offices, he’s more readily able to showcase not only his brilliant animating skills, but also his winning personality and magical blue eyes.

When he showcases his brilliant animating skills, his winning personality and magical blue eyes, co-workers say, “Wow, that Michael Granberry is something special!”

When co-workers say, “Wow, that Michael Granberry is something special!” they’re more likely to throw promotions, raises and multi-million dollar production deals his way.

When co-workers throw promotions, raises and multi-million dollar production deals his way, he becomes a Hollywood hotshot, all his career dreams come true, and I get a swimming pool!

So yes, the brownies go to work with MG.  Just like the oatmeal truffle cookies did last week, and the yet-to-be-determined dessert will next week.

And the week after that, and the week after that, and the week after that.

And whenever Michael comes home with good news from the office, I close my eyes, smile, and say to him, “I can almost smell the chlorine already!”

Get Cheesecake Marbled Brownie Recipe Here

Oatmeal Chocolate Truffle Cookies OR How to Keep Your Man Employed

The husband went back to work this week as animator for the new season of Cartoon Network’s Robot Chicken. Why are they lucky to have him? Well, he took my decadent oatmeal chocolate truffle cookies to work to share with the entire production staff.  That’s reason number one.  And he will continue to take my cookies to work to share as long as my oven works and they’re smart enough to keep him on the payroll.   That’s reason number two.

He’s also a pretty phenomenal animator.  That’s reason number three. I might be willing to bump that up to reason number two, but he’ll have to feature my likeness in more of his work before that happens. My effigy hasn’t made a cameo in almost five years!(that’s me in the driver’s seat of the car during Georgie’s Wish below).  Recipe follows after the jump:

Click here for my recipe for Oatmeal Chocolate Truffle Cookies