Doggie sauerkraut: If good dogs get goiters, do the naughty get goiter’s?
WHO’S ON FIRST, and who is at fault?
Just so both of my regular readers will know — the grammatical error in the name of the FROG exercise/flexibility program for senior citizens at Howard Mermorial Hospital is the fault of a bunch of ignorant Nebraska sodbusters.
“Fitness Reaching Older Gen’s” is the whole name of a program adopted here, but developed by the health department in southwest Nebraska. The Nebraskans said that our locals could use their program but had to copy everything EXACTLY.
Last week this column poked fun at the program and its name. The apostrophe at the end of Gen’s disturbed my literate sensibilities. There should have been no apostrophe. Gen’s was meant to be plural, not possessive. I did not mention Nebraska.
“But what about that terrible grammatical error in the name?” our hospital fitness people surely asked when they sought permission to duplicate the flexibility program.
“What error?” the sodbusters probably answered.
I have now attended my third FROG class. It is not strenuous, but the flexing exercises have left me sore. I’m also getting real tired of explaining that obvious grammatical error.
The teenage health specialist who conducts the class has already decreed that my friend JB Davis and I can’t sit close to each other. She believes we are showing off, and she is right.
I hope she doesn’t report me and JB to the Nebraska sodbuster’s.
A CRAVING. Sometimes I give in to a strong urge to cook up something ‘different.’ It is a depressing turn of events when cooking (and giving free grammatical advice) is the most exciting thing in one’s life (Nebraska sodbusters take note: One’s is possessive, not plural).
Lately I had been dreaming about sauerkraut and sausage, and finally decided to do something about it. I invited the Navigator to this repast as a reward for her calm and flawless directions on our trip to see the WWII Japanese Internment Camps in Eastern Arkansas. I politely asked her what should properly be served with sauerkraut and sausages.
Blackeyed peas, she answered with what I took to be culinary confidence developed by real life experience. Hah!
So I gathered the ingredients and sterilized my old crockpot with acid and steelwool (see Jean Ince’s column in this issue). Actually, I cleaned and used two sterilized crockpots.
I had never cooked this dish before, so I did the smart thing: I ‘Googled’ for the recipe. It was a REAL complicated recipe, too. Perfect for a bachelor who has limited powers of concentration.
A can of sauerkraut, drained; a bit of brown sugar; some chopped onion; all piled in the crockpot with the sausage laid on top. My sausage ingredient was bratwurst grilled over charcoal and chopped into chunks.
It was delishioso, if I say so myself. Because I had reduced the recipes by half there was not much kraut or peas left.
But there was the nagging question of leftover bratwurst and the hogjowl from the peas.
I solved that problem by sending the meat items home with the Navigator, and therein lies the golden nugget of this story.
There was a day when you would occasionally see someone who had a large lump on the side of the neck. It was called a ‘goiter,’ and I always heard it was that person’s thyroid gland acting up as the result of a shortage of iodine in the diet. You don’t see goiters much anymore because we’ve learned to eat iodized salt. But in the days BEFORE iodized salt, the way Momma made Junior and Sissy get enough iodine was to make them eat sauerkraut no matter how much they whined. Sauerkraut was just about our only source of edible iodine. You didn’t need much iodine, just a teeeny bit every so often.
Back to my sauerkraut story.
I sent the leftover meat treats home with Navigator to give to Emma, her Boston Terrier whom she has spoiled for more than 11 years.
Emma promptly disposed of the hogjowl and bratwurst. I am pleased to tell you that some strands of that sauerkraut clung to the bratwurst and Emma is now protected against goiters for at least the next 11 years. Thank goodness!
On the other hand, I just have the Navigator’s word that the meat treats actually found their way to Emma’s bowl (Attention Nebraska Health Care Industry writers: Note the correct use of the possessive apostrophe in Emma’s).
I swear. Sometimes you have to hit sodbuster’s over the head with a hog bone to get their attention.
PUNS AND adult truths from my piano friend at Fellowship:
Why does someone believe you when you say there are four billion stars, but check when you say the paint is wet?
HE SAID: “Then come the wild weather, come sleet or come snow, we will stand by each other, however it blow.” Simon Dach, poet
SHE SAID: “In fact, corporate and union moneys go overwhelmingly to incumbents, so limiting that money, as Congress did in the campaign finance law, may be the single most self-denying thing that Congress has ever done.” Elena Kagan, US Supreme Court Justice
DO YOU READ THIS COLUMN ONLINE? If so, leave a comment for me and I’ll keep your name out of next week’s Court Docket.
SWEET DREAMS, Baby