Monday, March 9, 2009

Results from the Bog Throw-down and a Blogger’s Worse Nightmare

First the food, then the tragedy…

I left off with a bog Throw-down between my husband, the Kitchen Genius, and my lovely sister-in-law, Dana. Sorry it’s taken me so long to give you the results – which of course are quite subjective.

When my brother Chris read my previous bog blog about the challenge (see below), he immediately, wrote back:

“Who the hell puts red pepper in chicken bog?? Yuck!! Picture just throwing capers or something into Cape Cod chowder. Some things are just wrong ... even if you love capers,” he said, adding:

“Dana wins!!

President - Team Dana”

Well since he is the President of Team Dana (and Dana’s husband), I hardly think that makes him objective. But he did offer the following great background on Chicken Bog:

“By the way, when concerning bog it's not a "throw-down" it's a Bog Off! They actually have a huge competition every year in Loris, SC (The Loris Bog Off) with all the bog you can eat, live music, rides and games for the kids ... big fun.”

The next night I got a text message from Dana, saying, “I’m making some bog!” and the real contest was on. A few hours later this photo came through:

Doesn’t it look yummy? Dana told me that there are a million different variations of bog. Some people leave the chicken on the bone like we did. Others pull it off like she does. For the record, she didn’t have any problem with our addition of red peppers, but she know that CERTAIN people in her family will hate it so she abstains.

She boils the chicken and removes it from the pan to let it cool. She then adds the rice and kielbasa to the chicken stock in the pan for really great flavor.

Here’s my brother, the President of Team Dana’s response to the meal:

“Dana out did herself tonight! It was awesome! She cooks the rice in the water she boiled the chicken in and then takes all the meat off the chicken and adds it back in with the kielbasa! Yum. No bones. No peppers, no celery. The WAY IT WAS MEANT TO BE!!!”

I’ve tasted both bogs and they are both delicious. So in the absence of a real contest or judges, I’m declaring a tie. The bottom line is Chicken Bog is like any other recipe – best made just the way YOU like it.

Now the tragedy:

I’ve missed my blog and my Internet friends SO MUCH this week! Just two hours after I expressed my sympathy to another blogger whose computer crashed, my own beloved laptop crashed too! And of course I did not have a backup – of anything.

This even after I have read about countless other crash and burn stories where people lost everything. The worse thing is I had plenty of warning this could happen. Before the scary blue screen took over, my laptop had been working slower and slower.

I could shower (and even shave my legs, and blow dry my hair) faster than I could retrieve my morning email. A few weeks before the tragedy, I bought a pen drive with every intention of backing up my files. And then I got busy and didn’t do it. Foolish me.

Thankfully, my uncle is a computer expert and he was able to retrieve all of my data. Since I couldn’t afford to buy a new laptop, he offered to fix my old one. The short version is, he installed a new hard drive, ordered more memory and ran the start up disc to restore everything back to the day I first bought it.

So far, so good, EXCEPT - when I bought the laptop I paid extra for Microsoft Office 2003 and that disc is no where to be found. Not at my house, not at Dell, not at Microsoft (but very expensive on Ebay). So for now, I have a very old word processing program and no Outlook for my email. All of my saved email files are useless unless I find a copy of that disc or splurge and buy Office 2007.

Having a whole week without my laptop has forced me to analyze my attachment to it. Unnatural? Unhealthy? Maybe, but I sure am glad to have it back. The first few days it was gone, I paced around my house, stopping each time at the empty space where my beloved usually sits with tears in my eyes. (I really wish I was exaggerating here.)

Then I realized it was truly gone and got depressed. I read three books during this phase because reading is always my first response to depression. When my life sucks, I love the opportunity to fall into someone else’s.

Then I got restless again and began to watch TV - an activity I haven't regularly done since I started the blog and realized something had to give timewise.

I found the exact perfect avenue for my mood – “Saving Grace” on TNT. Have you seen this series? I can only say, I must have passed into the anger phase of grief and the episodes I watched allowed me to vicariously live out every naughty impulse I’ve ever had and a whole bunch I’ve never dreamed of.

“Saving Grace” is the story of one very crazy cop, played brilliantly by Holly Hunter. The show is overflowing with an abundance of anger and every dysfunctional behavior you can think of. I LOVE IT.

On the two episodes I watched (from last season), there was crazy wild sex, including a smearing of condiments all over naked bodies (who knew plain old catsup and yellow mustard could be so arousing?), tons of drinking (beers and shots flow freely) and good friends who are always supportive even when you mess up (sign me up for some of them).

Since it’s a cop drama there is also a puzzling murder mystery – and then there’s the resident angel, Earl. Yep, an angel to let you off the hook for watching such smut to begin with. (Warning: Earl is not a Michael Landon kind of angel).

But then even my anger faded and after my walk on the wild side with Grace, I was once again back to missing my peeps and the blogging world. Even though I don’t have email yet, I do have the Internet, and I can’t wait to see what’s been cooking in all of your kitchens while I’ve been away.


Michele said...

So I guess that e-mail that I sent you last week is still sitting in your inbox getting lonely. :)

I'd be lost without my laptop. Thankfully I have as desktop for a backup. It's old and slow, but I'm glad it's there just in case.

I hope that you get everything back in order soon...because we miss you!!

vanillasugarblog said...

Oh Laurie that totally sucks. But you know you are so lucky to have a family friend to come to your rescue. When my computer crashed I had no one, only Dell's 800 number to order a new one. I do backup though, a lot, all because of that one epsiode of Sex & The City--made me learn to back up every other day. Computers, I swear are only meant to last 3-5 years. I swear it's a monopoly.
Sorry you had to go through all that crappy shit honey. Call me if you need me...

Anonymous said...

I am so, so sorry...I know how you feel! Ugh. It is the worst feeling. I'm glad you are back.

Katherine Roberts Aucoin said...

You are so lucky yo be able to retrieve what you did retrieve. I know it's inconvenient and frustrating when you're without your computer.

I hope you get back to Office 03 or better soon!

The Diva on a Diet said...

Oh no, my heart is really going out to you, Laurie! Ugh! I've had two computers crash on me and have yet to really learn my lesson. It just sucks, there's no other word for it, and I'm sorry. :(

On a brighter note, I love the looks of both chicken bogs. Yummy! Don't tell your brother ... but I'm digging the red pepper addition!

Hope you'll be all the way back up and running soonest.

Alicia Foodycat said...

I am so pleased your uncle was able to retrieve your files!

Anonymous said...

Mine died this week too! :(

Anonymous said...

Oh, sorry to hear about your laptop! I know how I am with mine- I'd be lost without it! (As it is, my studio has a TERRIBLE wireless connection... sometimes it doesn't work at all!)

I've never heard of bog, but it certainly looks like something that would be delish, regardless of the variation. Chicken, sausage, rice? Yum!

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