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Dad and Homer - Impressions and Expressions of Ijon
November 22nd, 2003
03:13 am

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Dad and Homer
Last night, at the Homer reading night, we were joined by my dad. He actually expressed interest right from the start, but couldn't make it to the first two sessions. He did catch up using the materials on the Web page, and showed up, text in hand, last night.

I can't begin to put into words how special it was to have him here, among my friends, reading the Iliad with us. My dad was the strongest intellectual influence in my early life, and has everything to do with the sort of moose I grew up to be. He nurtured my budding interests, introduced me to Greek mythology (one memorable drive to Jerusalem, almost twenty years ago), gave me vintage-Hebrew youth literature when I was seven years alled, checked out books from the adult library for me when I got frustrated with the children's library, and knew the answers to all my questions, or at least where to refer me. He, together with mom, gave me my Hebrew, and kick-started my English, and my fondness for trivia and the Bible. His honesty and his work ethics were lighthouses I could always steer by. I could go on and on, but this won't help me express what was so special about the occasion.

Perhaps it was feeling that I was really giving him something back. Perhaps it was pride and joy in having for a dad someone who hasn't lost his intellectual curiosity, and doesn't have that "I've done my reading; now it's your turn" attitude I see in so many older people.

There was another special moment, before the Homer session began. My dad showed up early, before everyone else, including arnulf, arrived. I was busy preparing the stuffed mushrooms, and after pouring him a cup of coffee, I enlisted him to help with the preparations. Dad took out mushroom legs while I was preparing the garlic-and-butter paste, and then he cut up some onion extra fine, in his incomparable technique. There we were, father and son, in my kitchen, silently preparing food together, perfectly at ease. It's not that there usually exists tension between us or anything, but there was something special about that situation, that picture, nonetheless.

Ah, I just can't put it to words.

Current Mood: good
Current Music: Meir Ariel -- Zir'ey Kayits

(12 comments | Leave a comment)

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From:ukelele
Date:November 21st, 2003 05:19 pm (UTC)
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You have Homer and stuffed mushrooms?!?

*whimpers*
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From:ijon
Date:November 21st, 2003 06:39 pm (UTC)
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'fraid so. And tonight marked another cullinary breakthrough in our humble Flat: Risotto Parmigiano! ::smacks lips::
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From:ukelele
Date:November 21st, 2003 07:00 pm (UTC)
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Oh, I love making risotto.
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From:ijon
Date:November 21st, 2003 07:51 pm (UTC)

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Er, that 'cullinary' up there has one L too many. I blame Catullus.
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From:shunra
Date:November 21st, 2003 05:52 pm (UTC)

How lovely.

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A linguistic note: I suspect those are the stems he took out. And he just possibly was mincing the onions. This is only for future reference - your description carries the flavor of the moment beautifully.
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From:ijon
Date:November 21st, 2003 05:57 pm (UTC)

Re: How lovely.

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Stems, indeed! Are legs with mushrooms at all, as in describing a live mushroom in the field, or never? And doesn't mincing imply a different technique than slicing and cross-slicing?

(and do not hesitate to correct my English, please!)
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From:shunra
Date:November 21st, 2003 06:08 pm (UTC)

I don't recall reading about the legs of mushrooms

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...and Google produces only 11 citings of "mushroom leg". Conversely, I have often heard of the stem of a mushroom (316 citings of the phrase "remove the stem" near mushroom, while "remove the leg" refers to the leg of someone else, which is removed while various processes involving mushrooms occur.

Mincing is exactly that - slicing, cross-slicing, and cross-slicing again. The result is fine, distinct, bits. Yum. (And it is a technique that takes some skill to perfect... ...skill almost lost in our generation to gadgets... ...of course I mince my own...)

(And I tend to enjoy your content and not want to comment on the form you choose - but your mushrooms had legs on a previous post, too, so I figured it was a worthwhile item to note.)
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From:gaal
Date:November 22nd, 2003 02:06 am (UTC)

Re: How lovely.

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See Alton Brown for a glossary of mince, dice, cube, and slice. And cetera.
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From:jdm314
Date:November 21st, 2003 08:12 pm (UTC)
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Mmmm, those mushrooms sound wonderful!
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From:ijon
Date:November 21st, 2003 08:22 pm (UTC)
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Here's an open invitation: if you're ever in the neighborhood, this side of the ocean, do come by. I promise mushrooms, music, and dead languages galore.
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From:jdm314
Date:November 22nd, 2003 09:32 am (UTC)
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Sounds fantastic. I am overdue for a trip overthere, so I may need to take you up on that some day.
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From:mux2000
Date:November 23rd, 2003 12:39 am (UTC)

Lovely

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Your post reminds me of the kind of father I want to be myself one day.
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