Cold? Try some area award-winning chili


Last week the days were cold, clear and beautiful. As far as I am concerned, all winter could be like that. In a conversation with an old friend in Kansas City, he noted seven days of snow and freezing temperatures made him yearn for “global warming” instead of “climate change.”

Remember that Kin Hubbard warned us, “Don’t knock the weather. If it didn’t change once in a while, nine out of 10 people couldn’t start a conversation.” (Or a newspaper column.)

One way to fight off the cold is to head down to the Wreck Room for a chili dinner. Last week, six of the members submitted their favorite recipe for tasting and rating. BJ is pretty sensitive to really spicy food so she spent some time wandering around with her lips afire. We had to replenish our stash of lip balm to mollify her discomfort.

Theresa Muir was voted best with her “New York Bowl of Red.” Anne-Burrell Smith was in second place with her misnamed “Best Chili in the USA.” I mean, if it was the best, why did it not win? In third place was “Award Winning Chili,” prepared by Kathy Kubesh.

I found all the ones I tasted to be exceptional. All the entries claimed to have no greater than a three on the five-point heat scale.

Shelly Randall was the featured speaker at last week’s Dine and Discover. She spoke on the fascinating history and restoration of the Felicity Ann as the Community Boat Project during the past few years.

In 1952-53, an adventuress by the name of Ann Davison used the boat to become the first woman to sail across the Atlantic. BJ suggested the program to D&D coordinators Milt and Doris Lum. That apparently qualified us to sit at the head table with Shelly, her Port Ludlow resident mother-in-law Gloria, the Lums, and Soozie and Dan Darrow.

There was no lack of delightful and scintillating conversation in that group. In addition, the head table goes through the potluck line first.

The youngest grandson just celebrated birthday No. 6 with some friends at “Math ‘n’ Stuff” in Seattle. The store has an amazing supply of Legos and board games for kids to play. They were there for a couple of hours, enjoying all of the options and picking out products to take home.

Before the party, there was a celebration for him at home, and we gave him a new box of Legos. His kindergarten teacher has a “mystery reader” come in to read to the class once a month. BJ and I took advantage of that and surprised him greatly.

As we continue our journey through the “eating” season, I offer a paraphrased observation from Jules Renard: “The truly free man or woman is one who can decline a dinner invitation without giving an excuse.”

Love a curmudgeon and have a great week!


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