Poor Man’s Alfredo

Down to a few crumbs in the fridge and pantry? Got two or three days before payday? Believe me, I know the feeling.
Times like these are when it pays off to get a little creative.

Let’s take a quick inventory.
If you’ve grown accustomed to be being broke, chances are you’ve got some Ramen noodles lying about. Am I right?
OK, so Ramen noodles, check.
Next, hopefully you have a little milk that hasn’t soured yet. Yes? OK, check.
How about butter? Not even a half-stick? How about a few packets swiped from McDonald’s or your favorite food pantry? OK, then. Check.
Happen to have a wedge of aged Romano and a grater? No, I didn’t think so. How about some grated Parmesan? No? Not even a few packets pilfered from your favorite pizza joint? Look again. Oh, yeah, forgot about Saturday night, didn’t you? All right, then. Check.

Pantry check:

Fresh garlic? Didn’t think so. How about powder? OK, that’ll do — in fact, it’s bonus.
Fresh peppercorn grinder? No? Any black pepper? Check that junk drawer. There it is. We may not be world-class chefs, but we’re not Philistines either. Or are we? Don’t answer that.
Now this is critical. Do you still have power and a functioning stove? Or a least a hot plate or microwave? Then we’re in business!

OK, in summary:


  • One package (more if you’re really hungry) Ramen-style noodles
  • Butter, hopefully at least a quarter-stick
  • Reasonably unsoured milk
  • Parmesan cheese in any amount you can scrape up
  • Garlic and pepper (optional — hell, everything but the noodles is optional)


In small pot, bring water to a boil. You do know how to boil water, right?
Place noodle pack (no, take it out of the package, idiot!) in boiling water, let cook about 3 minutes.
Drain most of the water out of the pan. Don’t use a colander (as if you had one!) because most of the noodles will slide right through. Trap the noodles with a fork or whatever. You don’t have to drain it dry, just do your best.
Reduce heat to low and return pot to stove.
Stir in butter and milk. Let’s not get pretentious and require precise measurements. You ain’t Julia Child or Anthony Bordain. Eyeball it: Use enough to bathe those precious Ramen noodles that go for a buck a six-pack.
Now sprinkle with Parmesan and pretend it’s freshly grated Romano pecorino. Stir.
Remove from heat. Let it sit for a couple or three minutes.
Sprinkle with garlic and pepper (again, optional, and if you’re with a poor date, be careful how much garlic you use)


It’s actually surprisingly good!

Serving suggestion

Results may vary

OK, OK, here’s what it really looks like. And after throwing together a second batch, I have to say it’s one of the better Alfredos I’ve had. Def beats sauce in a jar!

Photo courtesy of Studio on Washington





Dream analysis

I had one of those weird dreams last night/this morning.

Apparently I was somewhat aware I was dreaming. I was analyzing a dream in this dream. I reached the conclusion that it was about feelings of guilt. Or perhaps more precisely, it was about regret. Two related but different things. You can regret things or moments you feel guilty about. But can also regret things you have or haven’t done haven’t done and looking back, wish you had done differently.

Maybe a career choice. Plenty of regrets there. Maybe failing to pursue a potential relationship. A regret or two there. Seafood or steak? Or something more adventurous. Ah, maybe a regret or two there. They come in all sizes.

I don’t remember specifics of this particular dream (or was it a series of dreams? Not uncommon). But I’m pretty sure it was about regret.

And to quote the Butthole Surfers: “The funny thing about regret is it’s better to regret something you have done than to regret something you haven’t done.”

To enjoy this fine video in full, click here (I promise, no Rick-roll)



I’ve noticed that my blogging tends to go in fits and starts. Sometimes I’ll forget it’s there and let it lie dormant for a month. Or three. Then it’ll erupt in spasm of photos, thoughts, rants and so forth. I think I’m on the verge of an eruption.

Rumble, rumble …



A few pics near Lake Erie

Recent day trip was not entirely satisfying. But at least I got out and about a bit.

French Creek in Sheffield / Sheffield Lake

Here is the source of my greatest disappointment. I had gotten word of an “atmospheric inversion,” a phenomenon where the air immediately above the surface of a body of water acts as a magnifying glass, making faraway objects appear much closer than they actually are. In this case, you could make out the Canadian side of Lake Erie, Cedar Point and other parts along the Lake that normally are not visible from Lorain or Sheffield Lake. For a better look, click here. Colleague Bruce Bishop got a much better shot of it the day before.





Swim meet

Made it to Lindsey’s last swim meet. Her relay team just missed making the state meet by one spot. Dang.

Oh, and it was her 18th birthday. A state qualifier would have been the perfect gift. Ah, well, life ain’t perfect.

Lindsey’s last lap in her last leg in her last event in her last meet in high school competition. She had the lead, but the team finished second in the heat.

Lindsey’s Hoban High School relay team.


Dear Democrats

You whiney cry babies. How many of you voted? How many of you DID NOT vote? Because if you did not vote, you have YOURSELF to blame. Yes, you, you lazy-ass, do-nothing whiner.

Piss and moan all you want, but inaction made the difference in this election. Couldn’t be bothered to take a few minutes to register to vote? Or maybe you registered but couldn’t be bothered enough to take a few minutes out of your oh-so-hectic schedule to vote? Really?

I inconvenienced myself for, oh, maybe 15 minutes on Election Day. Could have spent a half-hour in line voting early at the Board of Elections. Point is, I went to all that trouble to make myself heard where it counts. Facebook doesn’t count. Bumper stickers don’t count. Votes count.

How about you?

Chances are the ones I want to reach with this shame will never see this because you’re far too busy doing whatever you waste your time with.

Point lost on the pointless.

Well, what government we get we deserve.

Thanks a lot.

Ass hole.