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Mack's Corner

This Week


I had to go to the courthouse to fix a speeding ticket years ago. It was a good kind of speeding ticket. I told the officer I was late for a meeting (which I was) and that I was sorry. He said, "OK, instead of writing you up for going 150 in a 35, I'll put you down for 42 in a 35 and you can go to court and pay court costs and plead guilty and it will be like it never happened." See it pays to be nice even when you're totally busted. I went to the court building and started standing in line. You have to stand in line for everything there, but it moves along. I always have to remember to leave my knife/screwdriver/bottle opener tool in the car or else they take it away from you. I got through the first line and then went and got in the next line. It seems that a lot of people meet nice Police Officers who don't write them up for the full amount, it was the longest line. I got into the courtroom, got my court appearance papers, got my check out, I was next. I was all ready to raise my right hand or pledge allegiance to the flag or promise that I would never do it again when the lady called me up, took the papers, looked at me (looking as innocent and pitiful as possible), and wrote "Dismissed" on the paper. "Thank you, Mr. Oates. Next". I stood there stunned for a second, put the check and the court papers in my pocket, and hurried out. No reason to wait, it wasn't going to get better than that.

I went to the Memphis in May BBQ contest year a few years after the ticket. Turns out that I know lots of people who have teams in it. I went just to see one person. He told me his team was on the south side, so I parked north of the north side and walked through. I had been sitting all day, so the walk was nice and I thought I might see a few people I knew. I saw about 200 people I knew. I finally got to my buddy's place, he fed me about 6 different things that they had smoked, and then I settled in, found a chair and few people to talk to, and got ready for the parade. The best part of the BBQ contest is watching the people. Most people just wander from place to place looking for free food or free beer. They really don't have any place to go. About 9pm the music got louder and the number of people more than doubled but it was time for me to go home. I saw 300 more people I knew on the way out?

God's like that: He doesn't want us to wander from place to place, he's got things for us to do. We think we're not good enough or don't measure up. But God has written "Dismissed" on our guilty papers and we're ready to go.

Maybe at the BBQ contest this year I'll go early and take a lay-z-boy on wheels, big mud tires. Then I could visit all the different teams, have free food and figure out the best observation point. Can you put a lay-z-boy on a four-wheeler? I'll let you know.


Cooking 220 - 2 pans, 2 burners, 20 minutes:

Last week we did baked Risotto, just for something easy. But even though most people think Risotto is really hard because they've seen some chef yelling at a cook because he messed it up, It's really easy as you can see from this recipe. Usually, it's made with rice, but it works the same. Wouldn't this be great to come home to after work, a thick piece of bread, and a glass of wine?  I'm feeling warm and fuzzy just thinking about it. 

This is from Naomi Pomeroy. Her Restaurant is Ripe Cooperative in Portland https://ripecooperative.com/
She is really great, I would love to go eat at her restaurant.

Barley Risotto with Garlicky Mushrooms.

1/4    cup extra-virgin olive oil

3    large shallots, minced (1/2 cup)

4 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced

1 pound oyster mushrooms, thickly sliced or any mushrooms

1/2 teaspoon chopped thyme


Freshly ground pepper

1 1/2 cups pearled barley (10 ounces)

2/3    cup dry white wine

4    cups hot beef broth mixed with 2 cups of hot water

Snipped chives, for garnish

1/2    cup shaved Parmigiano-Reggiano (about 1 ounce), for garnish

In a large, deep skillet, heat the olive oil. Add the shallots and garlic and cook over moderately high heat, stirring constantly, until softened about 5 minutes. Add the mushrooms and thyme and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, until tender, about 8 minutes. Add the barley and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the wine and cook until absorbed about 5 minutes.

Add 1 cup of the hot beef broth mixture to the barley and cook over moderate heat, stirring frequently, until nearly absorbed. Continue adding the hot broth, 1 cup at a time and stirring frequently, until the barley is al dente, about 35 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and transfer to a bowl. Garnish with chives and the cheese shavings and serve.

The risotto can be refrigerated overnight. Rewarm before serving.


How about saving a kid's life!!

When you give Platelets it's like giving St Jude $700 - $1000. If we don't give them, they have to buy them.

Giving Platelets is like giving blood, it just takes longer (1 1/2 hours) and you get all of your blood back (so you can do it every week if you want). I know it's a long trip to go all the way down to St Jude, but you may be saving a kid's life. plus you get to watch a movie while you're there. Call Kim at 901.595.2024 and she'll set up an appointment and treat you like family. Just tell her you're from Hope.

Directions: From Poplar, turn north on Third Street, then right on Lauderdale/Jackson Ave (first right after you go under the expressway). Enter through the north guard gate (you'll see the Danny Thomas Pavilion. Gold top).

Tell the guard at the gate that you are here to donate blood. The guard will instruct you where to park. You will then enter the hospital by the red side door closest to the blood donor parking lot. The Blood Donor Center is in the southwest corner of the hospital on the ground floor.

Appointment times are generally available Monday through Friday from 8:00am to 4:00pm. Except on Tuesdays, they start at 9:15am.

See you this weekend. Bring a friend. It's going to be great!!!


Posted by Mack Oates at 11:45