...being the observations and navigational extracts
from the ongoing expeditions of San Francisco Piano Pop trio
True Margrit

Monday, October 31, 2011

Milady Robot

A little more about October 26th:
We drive merrily back to Tacoma after the Christo's show (in Salem, Oregon), buzzed from their delicious food, from playing a well-received, fun, and excellent show. To top it all off the staff played Kate Bush after our show (and before, too) and we love her. More about Kate Bush soon...

(photo by Bob Goldstein)

We get back to Tacoma and we all get to sleep pretty promptly. For tomorrow is another gig.

October 27th
We head in two separate cars to Mandolin Cafe as Andrew has an errand to attend to. Guided by Droid's fallible GPS, Gary & I take a route that lands us in sluggish traffic making us a wee bit late--we get to the venue 15 minutes before showtime. Oops! Andrew is almost set up and we whisk about getting our gear and whatnot all together. Somehow, we are actually playing our first song by 6:15 ish...and all is fine. As it happens, this 2nd half of the tour consists of three shows wherein we get to play over an hour. We do enjoy this freedom, and amongst the rock, old and new, I take the time to do my new itsy-bitsy ukelele ditty, "Like You", plus a solo piano tune, "Casseroles and Thunderstorms" (and in this case, on a real baby grand). Nice!

After the set there is much chatting, hugging, and visiting to be done--all manner of dear friends, dear family, and dear colleagues have shown up. My head spins a little at the very heartwarming-ness of it all. AWWWWWWWW, you sweet humans. I loves you ALL.

Though some of us have partaken of the Mandolin Cafe's yummy snacks, we are all still hungry for the imminent snack Andrew is planning to cook when we get back to his house: the fish that dare not speak its name. Yes it's true. He has a massive halibut fillet he is going to bread and fry in bacon fat. Oh mercy.

Gary & I speed off into the night charged with the important task of procuring tartar sauce ingredients. We locate a Safeway, grab the items ( mayo, shallot, fresh dill) and leap back into the car. But where are we? Uh oh, we are lost...but no! We have GPS. Gary turns on the audio option and the directions are issued in that imperious, flat, run-on, computer-generated voice--in this case it is female...ish. When "she" manages to make the phrase: "take-the-ramp-to-the-port-of-Tacoma" mash into one very long word that does not sound like English (it's closer to Elvish spoken by a machine), we dub her: "Milady Robot".

Such diversions notwithstanding, we get home in time for me to whip us some tartar sauce (greek yogurt, mayo, dill, diced shallots, and some homemade dill pickles of Andrew's). The fish is already swimming out of the bacon grease. And into my mouth. Oh my lord. It's good. You'd have to be made of stone to be unmoved by such deliciousness, on such a night. So say we all--even Milady Robot.


For a side dish we are eating some tasty sci-fi broccoli that came from Heather & Andrew's Little Eorthe organic veggie box. There are a growing constellation of pumpkins piling up from several weeks' worth of boxes, and we have been discussing all week how to cook them. I look at the clock and say:

"I bet we can cook a pumpkin pie by midnight". It's 10:45 and Andrew high-fives me in the customary ritual acceptance of a culinary challenge. It's on.

We grab the prettiest pumpkin, cut it up, remove its seeds and get it cooking in a REALLY hot oven ( just shy of broiling). Meanwhile we decide that yesterday's brownies must be reconstituted into the crust. We crumble the brownies onto a baking sheet and they go into the very hot oven as well--in this case to crisp up. Gary heroically goes back to the store to get heavy whipping cream. We melt a stick of butter and stir it into the brownie crumbs, then mash them into the bottom of two pie pans. For good measure we poke chocolate chips into the crust: more chocolate = better. We mix up the piping hot pumpkin flesh (once we speedily extricate it from its skin) and spin it up in the mixer with eggs, maple syrup, butter--and that heavy cream Gary brings. And of course we add the requisite pumpkin pies spices--cloves, ginger, nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon. We pop the two pies in the oven. It's 11:55.
Whoa. The colossal mess we've made is really something to be proud of.

The pies take an hour to bake, and we are getting very punchy...

They come out looking and smelling spectonkular. We are too tired and it's too rich to partake tonight (right before sleeping)--but tomorrow, well, we won't need Milady Robot to navigate our pie-laden forks to our mouths.


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Nice pies :)

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