Post #51. Dispatch From Florida

Lee Weiner writes:

So, because this has made us a little crazy, I have kept on my desk a scrap of paper where I jotted down the Trump administration's beloved University of Washington's virus model's prediction on April 6th for the number of deaths they thought would occur on April 16th (which they thought would be a near-peak number).

On April 6th they estimated a daily death count ten days later on April 16th of 3,130. The actual count yesterday (forgetting all the messiness that leads to under counts) was 4,591. That's a 46% undercount error in the model.

But I'm sure they've adjusted the hell out of their algorithms and its all much better now.

Last night I had a very nice dinner (anchovy/garlic butter pan seared salmon, then lightly and briefly in the oven to be less than raw but also less than cooked through, along with deeply roasted, slightly charred garlicky broccoli). All done as part of my recovery efforts from a bad couple of days when the virus news and two upcoming yahrzeits that I light candles for because I don't know if anybody else does (Phil and Abbie), combined to bring me down.

Afterwards I started to wonder how long my frozen veggies were going to last - and I realized not long, but shrugged it away, still determined to depend on delivery services getting better soon enough, and if not, still try to avoid the local supermarket (where one of the brave and/or "no-choice-but-to-work" staff in the produce section tested positive the other day). 

And then, this morning, totally unexpected from Misfits Market - "Your order has shipped!" and due to arrive Thursday. If it comes true I will wear a smile for days - and will have one today and tomorrow just in expectation. Not a clue what will arrive (hopefully) but am ready to dive into recipes I haven't even been able to consider since I used the last of my fresh veggies.

And yet, I also realized I needed to shop, so taking all precautions (mask, gloves, triple nose exhalations onto my good witch's constructed and now always worn bohdi bead bracelet) I risked what was an increasingly necessary visit to the Publix supermarket for staples that were definitely running out after being unable for days to snag a Whole Food delivery date.

I made the decision to try early-early, and if I didn't like the looks of things, I'd come back in the  afternoon to catch a quiet time. When I got there, there was a line outside, but everyone was standing six feet or more apart, everybody in masks, a number of people already in gloves, nobody complaining - a store employee was regulating the number of people being let in by the number of people leaving the store through another set of doors. He turned away someone until they put on their mask.

The store was not crowded; everyone tried as best they could to give everybody else as much room as possible, and everything on my list - even the fantasied items like chicken and the aged Swiss cheese that makes even my veggie burgers taste good - was there. I never ever before had such a very full cart and never spent so much in one shopping trip there - but had a smile as I touch-less checked out with a plastic hanging thing between me and the cashier who was also masked.

Apparently, even in Florida (or in my small part of it) people are paying attention

Recipe suggestions for some Misfits Markets veggies? Long slice up a zucchini, add some sliced small tomatoes - use garlic and whatever else you might like in the way of spices and grill them up; boil up angel hair pasta (reserving a bit of the water when done and draining the pasta); mix it all together - adding some of the pasta water, throw some shredded Parmesan over and (for this cook at least) be prepared to be pleasantly surprised. 

And I've discovered - if you have an assortment of stronger spices, you can - given enough time - turn kale into spiced, crunchy kale chips using very low heat in your oven. A final suggestion (especially if you're wondering what to do with the Misfit turnip(s)) - peel the root veggies, cut them into slightly larger than bite size, toss them so they're reasonably coated with olive oil and sea salt, then roast the fuckers at 400 degrees until browned and soft.


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