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Today's word on journalism

May 8, 2009

The Last WORD


The Fat Lady Sings, Off-Key, Drools

At about this time every year, like the swallows to Capistrano or the buzzards to Hinckley, Ohio, the WORD migrates to its summer musing grounds at the sanitarium —St. Mumbles Home for the Terminally Verbose.

The reason is clear, and never moreso than as this season —the WORD's 13th —peters out.

It's been a fraught year of high palaver and eye-popping transition, both good and not-so-much. An interminable presidential campaign saga finally did end, and in extraordinary and historic fashion. Meanwhile, the bottom and everything that's below the bottom fell out of the economy, with families, homes, entire industries and —of particular interest to WORDsters and the civic-minded —dozens of daily newspapers ("I don't so much mind that newspapers are dying--it's watching them commit suicide that pisses me off." --Molly Ivins). . . all evaporating. What replaces them, from the individual to the institutional to the societal? Are we looking at a future of in-depth Tweeting?

As any newsperson or firehorse knows, it's hard to turn your back on day-to-day catastrophe --we just have to look at the car wreck. But even the most deranged and driven need a rest. As philosopher Lilly Tomlin once observed, "No matter how cynical you become, it's never enough to keep up."

So this morning, as a near-frost hovered over northern Utah, the unmarked van pulled into the driveway and the gentle, soft-spoken men in the white coats rolled the WORD out of bed and into a straitjacket for the usual summer trip to St. Mumbles, where the blathering one will be assigned a hammock and fed soothing, healthy foods --like tapioca, dog biscuits and salmon --while recharging the essential muscles of cynicism, outrage, sarcasm, social engagement and high-mindedness, in preparation for the next edition.
Summer well, friends.

Speak up! Comment on the WORD at

http://tedsword.
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Feedback and suggestions--printable and otherwise--always welcome. "There are no false opinions."

A confession of a nerd’s addiction

By Shannon K. Johnson

April 20, 2009 | I have a confession to make. I dream about chocolate, in church I think about making crepes and cupcakes. What 22-year-old spends her spare time thinking about what to put in stuffed mushroom caps? It is unusual for any 22-year-old to think about how to make egg-drop soup but it is especially at that very moment that is the culmination of years of education that I should be thinking about.

I suppose that at the end certain stages of life we wax sentimental so at the end of my time at Utah State I have become a bit nostalgic. At twenty-two I will have managed to graduate from college with a dual degree and am going to go law school this fall. But at the end of all my academic preparation I can think about nothing more then baking.

Perhaps it is this paralyzing fear of the future.

Not yet knowing which school I will be enrolling in this next fall-it makes one feel safer in their kitchen. But whatever the reason I discovered a domestic skill that I once tolerated is now more fun then-dare I say it-homework.

Cooking is a process that is creative dynamic and once you know the basic rules you only have to wait a little while to get a reward. It is so against everything else I do, I work today for tomorrow’s meal. I pay thousands in tuition to ensure that I can get a job. But now, I walk the streets of Logan for the last time. I make cupcakes and fill out graduation announcements. So perhaps because of its freedom and spontaneity or maybe it is just that I like to eat and not share.

This last weekend I had a chance to make crepes. Crepes are a un-levin pastry that is wrapped around various fillings. I prefer dessert crepes with things like strawberries, nutella, white chocolate or cheesecake pudding and apples sautéed in cinnamon, vanilla and butter. So one of the first things I learned how to make was crepes and over the years I have refined and tried various recipes.

The easiest way to make crepes is to take a large blender whip three eggs, one-and-a-half cups of milk, one-eighth teaspoon salt and two tablespoons vegetable oil. After it becomes foamy, I like to add a teaspoon of vanilla, a dash of nutmeg and gradually add one-and-a-half cups of flour.

For my readers who have celiac the exchange ratio for a flour mix it is one to one the best flour I have used here is Gluten-free pantry’s all-purpose flour. The reason the exchange is so simple is because the crepe is un-levin.
After the mix is well-blended place the blender into the fridge for an hour to chill but be sure to run it through the blender to remix it before you bake it because the batter will have settled with the flour on bottom and liquid on top.

I prefer to make crepes by pouring them into a hot nonstick pan with melted butter. I usually use a one-fourth cup to pour and gently spread the batter out from the center.

These crepes will be thick and resemble pancakes. But in my opinion with crepes the thicker the better it keeps the crepes from falling apart.

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