Texas Liberal

All People Matter

Please Have A Nice And Safe Thanksgiving

I hope folks are having a nice and safe Thanksgiving.

I’m writing this post at about 2 PM on Thanksgiving Day.

I’ve already had dinner at a local restaurant.

On the menu was the roast pig you see above.

I guess the pig did not have very much to give thanks for.

Please at least have a day better than the one the pig is having.

November 22, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , | Leave a comment

The Things I Have Done With Time Alone—Time Alone Is Excellent

I’ve got a 47 hour stretch with no work and with nobody else at home.

Here is how I have spent the first six hours of this time alone.

First—I got a can of clam chowder for dinner at Walgreens as I drove home from work.

Below you see the food aisle from where I got the chowder at a local Walgreens. They got everything you need in that aisle so long as you don’t need very much.

I also stopped at Memorial Park here in Houston on the way home and took a 3 mile walk on the jogging trail.

While walking I read Mayflower by Nathaniel Philbrick. I’ve been walking and reading on the Memorial Park trail for 14 years so far and have not bumped into anything yet.

There certainly is wickedness at the core of our national history when you read how we double-dealt the native population at every turn in the 17th century.

I’m reading Mayflower to study up for Thanksgiving.

I’m sure that Thanksgiving is not all about food and then rushing out to buy stuff as soon as your meal is over.

Once home I fell asleep for 2 hours and had a dream that I was walking along the ocean in Corpus Christi, TX, and that I saw a seal.

I suppose I had the dream about Corpus Christi because I was recently looking at some pictures of a trip I took to Corpus in 2008.

Visit Corpus Christi for a good time. All the Texas coast has interesting things to see.

Below is the picture I took four years ago that formed the central image of my dream.

There was once a Caribbean Monk Seal that had a range just south of Texas. But people killed them all. There are no seals in the Gulf of Mexico.

Click here to read about this seal and where it lived before they were all killed.

After waking up from my dreamy nap, I busted open the clam chowder for a fine dinner and have now moved on to writing a blog post.

With six hours down and 41 hours to go, who knows what more will happen with my excellent time alone.

November 20, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

When Should The Thanksgiving Turkey Be Thawed?

pilgrim-sioux falls 068.JPG

Thanksgiving Day is almost here and you need to know how to thaw your turkey.

Thanksgiving Day in 2012 is Thursday, November 22.

You do have the option of a vegetarian Thanksgiving.

Above are some PETA advocates of a veggie Thanksgiving.  They are dressed as PETA Pilgrims.

PETA has meat-free Thanksgiving recipes.

As for myself, I’ll be having turkey—unless I have something else instead because I don’t like turkey very much— and I would like the turkey thawed correctly.

These turkeys below are thawed, but are not quite ready for the table.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has guidelines for thawing a turkey.

Follow these guidelines so you do not poison your family and guests.

If you feel that the government is always lying to you, thaw the turkey your way and take your chances.

From the USDA instructions—

Fresh or Frozen?

Fresh Turkeys

  • Allow 1 pound of turkey per person.
  • Buy your turkey only 1 to 2 days before you plan to cook it.
  • Keep it stored in the refrigerator until you’re ready to cook it. Place it on a tray or in a pan to catch any juices that may leak.
  • Do not buy fresh pre-stuffed turkeys. If not handled properly, any harmful bacteria that may be in the stuffing can multiply very quickly.

Frozen Turkeys

  • Allow 1 pound of turkey per person.
  • Keep frozen until you’re ready to thaw it.
  • Turkeys can be kept frozen in the freezer indefinitely; however, cook within 1 year for best quality.

Do not play around with this stuff. Do not make others sick.

Here is more of what the USDA suggests—

Thawing Your Turkey

There are three ways to thaw your turkey safely — in the refrigerator, in cold water, or in the microwave oven.

In the Refrigerator (40 °F or below)
Allow approximately 24 hours for every 4 to 5 pounds
4 to 12 pounds 1 to 3 days
12 to 16 pounds 3 to 4 days
16 to 20 pounds 4 to 5 days
20 to 24 pounds 5 to 6 days

Keep the turkey in its original wrapper. Place it on a tray or in a pan to catch any juices that may leak. A thawed turkey can remain in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 days. If necessary, a turkey that has been properly thawed in the refrigerator may be refrozen.

In Cold Water
Allow approximately 30 minutes per pound
4 to 12 pounds 2 to 6 hours
12 to 16 pounds 6 to 8 hours
16 to 20 pounds 8 to 10 hours
20 to 24 pounds 10 to 12 hours

Wrap your turkey securely, making sure the water is not able to leak through the wrapping. Submerge your wrapped turkey in cold tap water. Change the water every 30 minutes. Cook the turkey immediately after it is thawed. Do not refreeze.

In the Microwave Oven

  • Check your owner’s manual for the size turkey that will fit in your microwave oven, the minutes per pound, and power level to use for thawing.
  • Remove all outside wrapping.
  • Place on a microwave-safe dish to catch any juices that may leak.
  • Cook your turkey immediately. Do not refreeze or refrigerate your turkey after thawing in the microwave oven.

November 13, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | 1 Comment

Thanksgiving

It is a great Thanksgiving Day on the sunny shores of the Gulf of Mexico in Galveston, Texas.

I hope you and yours are having a nice and safe Thanksgiving.

November 24, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , | Leave a comment

Almost Time To Occupy Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving Day is almost here.

Lieutenant John Pike is out and pepper spraying at the Norman Rockwell Thanksgiving family dinner.

Nothing is more wholesome and American than Occupy Wall Street fighting for the 99%, and the free use of our First Amendment freedoms.

I hope everybody has some great Thanksgiving plans.

Please drive safely and let’s all be kind to one another.

November 23, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

Claims Of A First Thanksgiving In Texas—Texas Progressive Alliance Round-Up

Here is the most recent Texas Progressive Alliance round-up. The TPA is a confederation of the best political bloggers in Texas.  TPA members are citizen-bloggers working for a better Texas.

Every Texan and every American has the ability to attend a public meeting, attend or organize a protest, write or call an elected official, talk to friends and family, start a blog, donate money, write a letter to the editor, volunteer for candidates and causes, engage in acts of civil disobedience, and to run for public office.

With the round-up this week are a few facts about Thanksgiving in Texas. While we associate the first Thanksgiving with Plymouth, Massachusetts, there are some who assert that the first Thanksgiving in what  would be later become the United States  took place in El Paso in 1598.

From The Texas Almanac

“El Paso residents now claim the first Thanksgiving in North America. The modern event, first observed in April 1989, commemorates a day of thanksgiving celebrated by Spanish explorer Juan de Oñate and his expedition on April 30, 1598.”

The upshot is that this Juan de Onate and his expedition of discovery in what is now northern Mexico and the El Paso area endured the standard trials of Indian attacks, heat, and thirst, until it came upon the Rio Grande River where all the people and all the animals could finally have some water to drink and some food to eat.

(Above–A book about Juan de Onate. It seems he is relatively well-known in some circles. I’d not heard of him before.)  

A celebration of thanksgiving was ordered—

“A member of the expedition wrote of the original celebration, “We built a great bonfire and roasted the meat and fish, and then all sat down to a repast the like of which we had never enjoyed before….”

If you read the Texas Almanac article who will also learn of a claim of celebration of Thanksgiving in the future Texas that dates back to 1541.

I would imagine that feasts or celebrations of thanksgiving have taken place in one way or another for a very long time and in a number of places.

Please have a good and safe Thanksgiving holiday. Treat other people well.

Here is the round-up—

Off the Kuff took a tour of Houston elections from the 1990s to see how they compared to more modern matchups.Following Rick Perry’s latest gaffes, Letters From Texas explains why the governor has become such a hopeless band nerd that the crazy girl who can’t get a prom date pities him.Darth Politico commemorates Veterans Day with a discussion about the history of red tape and veterans benefits. Emphasis on ‘red’.

WCNews at Eye On Williamson points out that Republicans in Texas are boxed in. They know know taxes must be raised to run our state’s government, but can’t bring themselves to say it, much less do it: Texas GOP’s cowardice.

On the same night Houston Mayor Annise Parker celebrated barely being re-elected, a few blocks away the HPD arrested seven Occupy Houstonians for refusing to move a tarp which the police called a tent. PDiddie at Brains and Eggs doesn’t think that’s a great way to start a second term … unless she plans on again representing the 1%, that is. Continue reading

November 20, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

How To Thaw Your Turkey—PETA Pilgrims Say Have A Veggie Thanksgiving

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(Blogger’s Note–Time for the thaw a turkey post. It’s updated a bit, but is for the most part a rerun . Thawing a turkey does not change very much over the years. ) 

Thanksgiving Day is almost here and you need to know how to thaw your turkey.

Thanksgiving Day in 2011 is Thursday, November 24.

You do have the option of a vegetarian Thanksgiving.

The folks at PETA would like you to consider a veggie Thanksgiving.

Above are some PETA advocates. They are dressed as PETA Pilgrims.

VegCooking. com has meat-free Thanksgiving recipes.

As for myself, I’ll be having turkey–unless I have something else instead— and I would like the turkey thawed correctly.

These turkeys below are thawed, but are not quite ready for the table.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has guidelines for thawing a turkey.

Follow these guidelines so you do not poison your family and guests.

If you feel that the government is always lying to you, thaw the turkey your way and take your chances.

From the USDA instructions—

Fresh or Frozen?

Fresh Turkeys

  • Allow 1 pound of turkey per person.
  • Buy your turkey only 1 to 2 days before you plan to cook it.
  • Keep it stored in the refrigerator until you’re ready to cook it. Place it on a tray or in a pan to catch any juices that may leak.
  • Do not buy fresh pre-stuffed turkeys. If not handled properly, any harmful bacteria that may be in the stuffing can multiply very quickly.

Frozen Turkeys

  • Allow 1 pound of turkey per person.
  • Keep frozen until you’re ready to thaw it.
  • Turkeys can be kept frozen in the freezer indefinitely; however, cook within 1 year for best quality.

Do not play around with this stuff. Do not make others sick.

Here is more of what the USDA suggests—

Thawing Your Turkey

There are three ways to thaw your turkey safely — in the refrigerator, in cold water, or in the microwave oven. Continue reading

November 14, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | 1 Comment

Trouble For Republicans DeLay And Eversole Are Fine Holiday Gifts

The conviction of former U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay of Sugarland, Texas right before Thanksgiving Day last month was a wonderful Thanksgiving offering.

(Above–Bountiful Thanksgiving table. Photo by Ms. Jones.)

Tuesday’s indictment of Republican Harris County Commissioner Jerry Eversole for bribery and income tax charges is indeed a Christmas gift.

Mr. Eversole has pleaded not guilty.

Above–Christmas gifts. Photo by Sigismund von Dobshcutz.)

I’m sorry to say that Mr. Eversole is my Harris County Commissioner.

I’m sure the Tea Party—If it even exists anymore—will be focusing their energies on Mr. Eversole real soon.

Let’s hope that after this gift of an indictment is unwrapped we will find that it contains a conviction.

(Above–Unwrapped presents on Christmas Day. Photo by Steve.)

I’m not glad that Mr. DeLay and Mr. Eversole are in hot water simply because they are Republicans.  I don’t think all Republicans are crooks.

What I’m glad about is that wrongdoing by powerful people can be called to account, and that members of a party that calls Democrats Communists and traitors can be brought to justice.

Who are the Republicans serving with Republican County Judge Executive Ed Emmett on our Harris County Commissioner’s Court?

We have the indicted Jerry Eversole.

And then we have incoming Commissioner Jack Morman who will replace the unelected Sylvia Garcia. I say “unelected” because Ms. Garcia would still be serving if enough Hispanics in Harris County had bothered to vote, and if the Harris County Democratic Party and the Texas Democratic Party made serious efforts to encourage Hispanic voting.

These Democrats don’t want to make serious efforts because then they would actually have to address the concerns of this voting group, and because Hispanic elected officials in low-turnout one-party constituencies might face a primary challenge or might have to really talk about serious issues.

As for Mr. Morman, he still has not updated his campaign web page to even address the fact that he won the election. Also, there is nothing at all on his web page that suggests at all what his views are on issues before the county.

Click the link above and read it for yourself.

Here is what Houston TV station KHOU reported on Election Night about Mr. Morman—

“Even GOP leaders Tuesday night could not place where they might have seen Morman on the campaign trail or at pre-election events. He was nowhere to be found on Tuesday night at the GOP party.”

Mr. Morman will be representing something like 750,000 people, and nobody has any idea of his positions impacting the county and he can’t even thank voters for putting him in office.

What a crew of Republican alleged criminals and blank slates at our Harris County Commissioner’s Court.

(Top Houston bloggers Charles Kuffner and John Coby have also written about Mr. Eversole’s indictment.)

December 22, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

I’m Thankful For The Fact We Are Going Drive Safely Over Thanksgiving

File:Richard Nixon, turkey pardon.jpg

With Thanksgiving almost here, it is a good time to reflect on the reasons we are thankful.

(Above–Picture mostly unrelated to subject matter of this blog post.)

One reason I’m thankful this holiday is that we are not going to drive like a moron or drive drunk over Thanksgiving.

Okay?

Have a good Thanksgiving.

Don’t kill yourself or kill others because you are an aggressive driver or a drunk driver.

Here is a link to road conditions in Texas from the Texas Department of Transportation.

November 23, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | 2 Comments

I’m Thankful For Black People

Thanksgiving is almost here. This being so, it is time to reflect upon the things for which we are thankful.

One of the many things I am thankful for is black people.

So few black people are in the so-called Tea Party. Look at the pictures of Tea Party groups–You’ll see hardly black folks at all.

This is a good call by our nation’s black people.

I just finished a book called The Warmth of Other Suns. This book, written by Isabel Wilkerson, details the migration of black people from the south to the north in the 20th century.

Black people wanted out of the south because , as far as I can tell, the way blacks were treated in the Jim Crow south was little better than how Jews were treated in the Germany of the 1930’s.

Below is a picture I took in Houston yesterday. While I don’t know for 100% that the people who painted this fence were black, I do know that I took this picture in a black part of town.

Instead of going on about Muslims, immigrants and the government, the folks who painted this fence were looking  towards a better future.

To proceed in this way in these hard times ,and given the history of black folks in America ,takes character.

November 23, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

I’m Thankful For Immigrants

With Thanksgiving almost here, it is a good time to reflect upon the things for which we are thankful.

One thing I am thankful for are immigrants to the United States of America.

I’m mindful of the many issues involved with immigration to our nation.

Yet in the end, these folks are going to come to America one way or another as long as this remains a nation where you can tart over and make something of yourself.

I wager that when the immigrants stop coming that will be a sign that we are in deep decline.

My call is to be welcoming and to be open to people who want to come here and have a more decent life.

I don’t care from where  in the world immigrants to the United States are arriving. I welcome them all.

(Below–Immigrants arriving at Ellis Island in 1902.)

November 23, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | Leave a comment

You Need Not Spend Thanksgiving With Family—All People Matter

Thanksgiving is coming up. It’s a day we are supposed to spend with family, eating a large meal, and watching football. If that’s what you do, good for you. You’ll get no argument here. (Despite my dislike of football and the concussionsand long-term disability suffered by football players.)

However, for many, Thanksgiving is a different holiday than the popular image of the day.

Some spend the day with friends instead of family. Some are alone.

Maybe you don’t like your family or maybe your schedule and/or  budget does not allow travel to where your family lives. Maybe you’re alone at this point in life.

Whatever Thanksgiving is for you, it’s your choice or your circumstance. Many popular notions and conceptions are as unrealistic as the menu above. How many people are serving pumpkin bread in the shape of a pumpkin? Or mashed turnips?

Each year my wife goes to see her family in Chicago for Thanksgiving. For scheduling reasons, I’m unable to go with her to Chicago or to my parents home in Cincinnati. Most years I’m fortunate enough to get an offer from a co-worker here in Houston for Thanksgiving dinner. I politely decline.

Instead, I drive down to Galveston and have a day at the ocean. I eat at some seafood house. It’s always packed and I’m always the only person there alone. I survive just fine. People are too busy stuffing themselves to notice I’m alone.

One year I did not go to Galveston. Instead, I went to the House Of Pies on Kirby Drive in Houston. I had just purchased all three volumes of Robert Remini’s life of Andrew Jackson. I had a lot of reading to do. I sat in that restaurant for maybe three hours reading about President Jackson. It was a wonderful day.

In the House Of Pies that day were gay couples and folks of all types. There were all sorts of people in, I’d wager, all sorts of personal situations.

All good relationships between people have value.

All people have value.

Whatever Thanksgiving brings your way, make the best of it. Life is not like what is shown on TV commercials and TV shows. Life is what it is. You have great value.

Have a very good Thanksgiving.

November 11, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

When Shall I Thaw My Thanksgiving Turkey?

Thanksgiving Day is almost here and you need to know when to thaw your turkey.

Though you do have the option of a vegetarian Thanksgiving.

The folks at PETA would like you to consider a veggie Thanksgiving.

VegCooking. com has meat-free Thanksgiving recipes.

As for me. I’ll be having turkey and I’d like the turkey to thawed correctly.

These turkeys below are thawed, but they seem not quite ready for the table.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has some guidelines for thawing a turkey.

Follow these guidelines so you do not poison your family and guests.

From the USDA instructions—

Fresh or Frozen?

Fresh Turkeys

  • Allow 1 pound of turkey per person.
  • Buy your turkey only 1 to 2 days before you plan to cook it.
  • Keep it stored in the refrigerator until you’re ready to cook it. Place it on a tray or in a pan to catch any juices that may leak.
  • Do not buy fresh pre-stuffed turkeys. If not handled properly, any harmful bacteria that may be in the stuffing can multiply very quickly.

Frozen Turkeys

  • Allow 1 pound of turkey per person.
  • Keep frozen until you’re ready to thaw it.
  • Turkeys can be kept frozen in the freezer indefinitely; however, cook within 1 year for best quality.

Do not play around with this stuff. Do not make others sick.

Here is more of what the USDA suggests—

Thawing Your Turkey

There are three ways to thaw your turkey safely — in the refrigerator, in cold water, or in the microwave oven.

In the Refrigerator (40 °F or below)
Allow approximately 24 hours for every 4 to 5 pounds
4 to 12 pounds 1 to 3 days
12 to 16 pounds 3 to 4 days
16 to 20 pounds 4 to 5 days
20 to 24 pounds 5 to 6 days

Keep the turkey in its original wrapper. Place it on a tray or in a pan to catch any juices that may leak. A thawed turkey can remain in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 days. If necessary, a turkey that has been properly thawed in the refrigerator may be refrozen.

In Cold Water
Allow approximately 30 minutes per pound
4 to 12 pounds 2 to 6 hours
12 to 16 pounds 6 to 8 hours
16 to 20 pounds 8 to 10 hours
20 to 24 pounds 10 to 12 hours

Wrap your turkey securely, making sure the water is not able to leak through the wrapping. Submerge your wrapped turkey in cold tap water. Change the water every 30 minutes. Cook the turkey immediately after it is thawed. Do not refreeze.

In the Microwave Oven

  • Check your owner’s manual for the size turkey that will fit in your microwave oven, the minutes per pound, and power level to use for thawing.
  • Remove all outside wrapping.
  • Place on a microwave-safe dish to catch any juices that may leak.
  • Cook your turkey immediately. Do not refreeze or refrigerate your turkey after thawing in the microwave oven.

November 11, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , | Leave a comment

Sultry Woman With Turkey–Women In Colonial New England

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Above you see a sultry Pilgrim holding a Thanksgiving Turkey.

She’s going to have that turkey beheaded and served up for dinner.

What was the role of women in Colonial Massachusetts and Colonial New England?

From American Colonies—The Settling Of North America by Alan Taylor—

“It took a family to cope with the diverse and constant demands of building and maintaining a farm in New England. English culture expected all adults to marry and divided their labors into male and female responsibilities. Men conducted the heaviest work, including clearing, constructing, tending the livestock, harvesting the hay, and cultivating the grain crops. Women maintained the home and its nearby garden, cared for the numerous children, made clothing and soap, and prepared and preserved foods, including butter, eggs and cheese. But when a husband was away or incapacitated, the wife also had to assume his labors, taking the role of  ” deputy husband” until he returned or recovered….The New English understood marriage as both romantic and economic. Husband and wife were supposed to be both temperamentally and financially compatible…As in the mother country, New English men monopolized legal authority, landownership and political rights….In all this, New England simply replicated the gender hierarchy of the mother country. More noteworthy are the modest ways in which the Puritan faith provided a bit more authority, protection, and respect for women in New England than they enjoyed in the Chesapeake or the old England. … Above all, Puritanism preached the  importance of love and mutual respect as the foundations of Christian marriage.”

American Colonies is a great book.

Take the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday to learn more about our colonial origins.

A great source to learn this history is the blog History of American Women.

November 11, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | 2 Comments

Thanksgiving Photo Essay

Have a great Thanksgiving!

What is George W. Bush doing up there?

Are you not thankful he is gone?

This is a nice Thanksgiving scene.

The title at the bottom of the picture says–“Home To Thanksgiving.”

Is your life like this scene?

Don’t worry—Life was not really like that for the people in the drawing.

I wonder how many hours of work it took the woman in the drawing to prepare the Thanksgiving dinner.

Big shopping day ahead the day after Thanksgiving?

Scramble for those discounts before we all discount each other out of work as the rich get richer.

The first Thanksgiving, painting by Jean Louis Gerome Ferris

Here we have another image of Thanksgiving that does not ring so true.

People know it is not true.

We can’t forget what has been done in the past, though we should also be mindful of advances in human rights and human dignity in our history.

It is good that we can know the past and still seek to move ahead.

At least if you are not a Native American.

There are all types of pilgrims in the world.

People are looking to understand the world and to find the best way to live.

Please have a good Thanksgiving.

Use the day both to relax and to give some thought to life.

November 25, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , | 4 Comments

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