Vlorbik's Diner

son of owen's cooking show

Archive for the ‘60s’ Category

before & during: lots of rubbermaid tupperware

Posted by vlorbik on November 24, 2014

Photo on 11-24-14 at 3.29 PM

Photo on 11-24-14 at 3.37 PM

everyone knows it’s windy.

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Posted in 60s, DAADD | 1 Comment »

along came a cider who sat down beside her

Posted by vlorbik on November 4, 2014

Photo on 10-28-14 at 3.46 AM

“poetry reading” day at church last week. betty started off with th’ goddamn _highwayman_. (it’s long as hell.) after that, much better. quiet john stole the show. but i was also pretty good. fifty-cent tip.

Posted in 60s, DAADD, Verse | Leave a Comment »

zagreb just like i pictured it

Posted by vlorbik on May 19, 2014

Photo on 2014-05-19 at 08.55

Photo on 2014-05-19 at 08.51

for more images of st.~mark’s
there’s always goog’l. anything else you see here,
i’d rather have the hard copies. lucky me.

Posted in 60s, DAADD, Photo | Leave a Comment »

sve to ide u Bjeli Zagreb grad

Posted by vlorbik on May 1, 2014

Photo on 2014-05-01 at 10.41

Photo on 2014-05-01 at 10.42

later today, deo volente, there’ll be salad.
here are some preps. the peppers were partly
cleaned when i found ’em so i’ve already dug
in (starting out the new bottle of thousand
island in the process); the rest is fresh
out of the refrigerator. no, wait. the ev-
idence is clear: i also tore off a cabbage
leaf and a (romaine heart) lettuce leaf that
were clearly not worthy to be served (in the
context of such an abundance of fresher stuff).
and here’s a better shot of the toaster i en-
dorsed somewhere upthread (and the rest of its
unsolicited product testimonial: this “waring”
model has two dimmer-switch “darkness” settings
for its four slice-holes… and the settings
*work* [unlike those on toasters that seem to
think they know better than i do what i want
and’ll spit some toast i’m trying to darken
right back up at me as if *i* ought to know
better… it’s maddening i tell you maddening
… these don’t do that: if i drop newly-toast-
ed slices back down into their hot slice-holes
for more toasting without readjusting the rheo-
stat, more toasting is what they darn well get
and if they’re burnt that’ll’ve been what i
ordered up so it’ll serve me right… like back
in the pre-digital age when the equipment served
the lifeforms]. bringing forth two freshly-
-toasted sandwiches simultaneously [with some
previously-prepared *side dish*, ideally…
today, you guessed, it, a salad most likely…]
is one of my best kitchen tricks [so far; i’m
slowly learning more]).

here for may first is billy bragg and
which side are you on?.

What all goes white v Zagreb?

Posted in 60s, 80s, DAADD, Labor | 1 Comment »

two guys named ray, long ago. also potatoes.

Posted by vlorbik on February 13, 2013

ray bunnage was my best friend for most of the 60’s:
from our late single-digit years up to our early teens.
the bunnages weren’t as well-off financially as we thomases
(his dad was a methodist preacher & mine an english prof);
probably this does much to account for the fact that ray
was generally *much more practical* than i was (he began
earning his own money by the then-usual paper routes and
lawn-mowing jobs quite a bit before i did, for example).

we ran around together everywhere and hung out quite a bit
at each other’s houses… sleepovers and all the usual
kid stuff. but it occurs to me now that we *never*…
or almost never… spent much time in *my* familiy’s kitchen
but we spent *many*many hours cooking… and of course eating…
in *his*.

and i’ll’ve forgotten most of it. but i remember the
already-old-fashioned stand-up mixer we’d use for cakes
(from a premix box). and, get this, a hand-cranked
*ice-cream* maker (i’ll’ve only participated in making
it maybe one or two times… they made pretty big batches
and there was always a grownup involved; it was something
of an event… and the like-no-other batches lasted weeks).
another thing that comes up in my memory quite often:
cooking burgers out. ray liked to knead an enormous amount
of “seasoning salt” into the burger patties… enough that
they were almost falling apart… before grilling ’em.
and i copied his style as i did in most culinary matters.

anyhow, i suppose i’m bringing this up now as evidence
that even in childhood i enjoyed at least glimpses
of the cooking-is-fun-and-easy vibe… but mostly
down the street.

at home with just the family? not so much.
i can barely remember “helping” my mother
in the kitchen (by getting in the way and
licking the batter off the beaters and such).
my *clearest* memory of suchlike matters is
proudly peeling and mashing potatoes for
thanksgiving day. i must’ve done this
for a few years in a row. i seem to have
been influenced in this choice-of-specialty
by the comics: “sad sack” would sometimes
be shown peeling potatoes as a punishment
(“K.P.” stood for “kitchen patrol” or
“kitchen police” or somesuch thing, but
to me it was “keep peeling” [probably i got
this deliberate-misreading from my sister])
and for some reason i got a kick out of
identifying with this character.

but for the most part, i picked up pretty early
on the “housewifery is a trap for the less-fortunate”
vibe loud and clear from both parents (and the
culture at large… n^th wave feminism and
“do your own thing” and whatnot) and wanted
nothing to do with *anything* as “useful” as
cooking. once you let it be known that you’re
*good* at that stuff, they’ll keep making you
*do* it over and over. what’s next, *cleaning*?
**************************************************
then a bunch of years passed. ray moved away.
i got another best friend, chris mc-garry.
then mc-garry moved away. a year-and-change
later, he set up an interview for me at the
hotel he was working at and i got my first
full-time job and moved out of my dad’s place.
another year passed. and chris moved back
to bloomington. and the hotel fired me
and i got a bunch of temp jobs.
**************************************************
ray young was my employer first… but then,
and in pretty short order, my room-mate and
bachelor-life mentor. ray ran a carpet-cleaning
business and first hired me… i answered a want-ad…
as a phone solicitor (approximately the world’s worst
job). i was no good at getting him leads so he decided
to take me out on the jobs instead and hired somebody
else to work the phone.

business dried up in thousand oaks, so ray decided
to move back to vegas and set up there for a while.
he’d done this dosie-doh before and knew a few people
there. anyhow, he invited me to come along.
which is how we became room-mates.

back to the cooking show. one of the first things
we did on moving in was go get several pounds of
hamburger. which he showed me how to patty up
and shove in the freezer. the idea was to always
have *something* on hand. if the patty stack
started getting low, why then, we’d go and get
some more meat.

but ray wasn’t *much* into cooking. and eating out
in vegas was *cheap*. hell, drinks were “free” if
you were gambling. fifty-cent buffet breakfasts
were common and we sampled quite a few.

so, besides the burgers, i can only remember one
cooking tip from living with ray young: fried potatoes.
the classic recipe: cut ’em up, fry ’em in fat, salt
to taste, serve. we had this several times to soak
up the beer we’d drink lots of almost every night.
it was great.

and now i do ’em all the time.
a couple months ago, i even made madeline
a breakfast of “fried potatoes three ways”.
french-fry cut, disks (the way ray showed me),
and hash-browns. fried in butter, oil,
and pigfat in some order (i forget).
i myself had “fried potatoes four ways”
that morning since i’d peeled at least one
potato (and won’t serve the peels unless
done right with onions & cheese).

i still love mashing ’em too.
here’s something you probably haven’t tried:
put in some cream cheese (and a little less
butter). yum.

okay. starving. time for some hash-browns!

Posted in 60s, 70s, DAADD, Taters | Leave a Comment »

a petri-disch community

Posted by vlorbik on April 4, 2010

florida school reform in WaPo.

now with bloglike pop-up commentation from users:
deschooling society (dot-digress.it).

my life in schools.

primary first.
i was… more than most people even…
the subject of an *educational experiment*:
at university elementary school in the sixties
many of us even as kids spoke of ourselves
as “guinea pigs” for indiana university,
its ed school in particular. there were
great big ungainly boxes like a filing cabinet
on wheels that ran remote controls for
closed-circuit-TV cameras following us
through our lessons. for example.
and we were tested tested tested
you’d better believe… the “iowa test
of basic skills” seems to have come up
pretty often (anyhow the name sticks).
but remember it was the sixties:
we were also getting “the new math”,
a from-the-ground-up approach based
on *set theory*. this approach allegedly
flopped nationwide because its teachers
didn’t understand its principles.
ours sure did and it was far the clearest
thing in school or life then or now
as far as i’ve been able to determine.
there was plenty of (what’s now called)
“discovery learning” going on too:
it was the very *age* of “do your own thing”
and our teachers had breathed in its spirit
at a rich source. (iu bloomington, as we
will see, was my very *garden of eden*,
the paradise i’ve been exiled from
[for my knowledge of good and evil]).

so there was a lot of best-of-both-worlds
and i was right at home. in fact, i was
pretty much at home *anywhere* in those days
and i knew it: my family did two years
(“kindergarten” and “4th grade” for me)
abroad with *lots* of travel time
in croatia and the rest of what was then
known as “yugoslavia”… slovenia, serbia,
bosnia, and so on… plus poland, czechoslovakia
(another name change for the present-day),
austria, and on and on. *we* were together
and it felt it would just naturally always
be so. we five: dad, mom, elder sister
hannah, me, younger brother nathan.

sixth grade was pivotal. i’ll have mentioned
it already in this very blog i think; anyway
i hereby promise to return to this subject.

Posted in 60s, Bloomington, Labor, Lies, Links, Me Me Me | 2 Comments »

the man went to earth and looked again

Posted by vlorbik on December 31, 2009

madeline made bread.

there’s nothing in the world
like fresh bread. mmm-mm!
i was barely in the kitchen at all
for the whole process but from
time to time various thoughts
about fresh bread drifted around
through my considering-apparatus.
dominant among them dorothy stewart’s
brown county loaves. dorothy was
a dear friend to our whole family.
she made much the most homemade
bread strictly-so-called that *i*’ve
ever had and boy it was good.
when i was little i wanted plain
old grocery store air bread but
i got over that. probably around
the time i found out i liked pizza.

anyhow when the loaves are cooled off
i bring one into the TV room along
with knives and butter. but first
of course… never mind the butter…
i break off a nice crusty piece
and have at. boom. i’m back just
like that in zagreb across from
the school where there was a little
shop where usually i’d get a
lollipopish thingie costing, like,
a couple dinars or something…
about a tenth of cent US at that
time… but would sometimes splurge
on a small loaf… or big roll…
tasting *just like this*
wonderful stuff right here.
and i’ve got impressions in here
of both buildings and the street
that separated ’em and the gravel
of the school courtyard and the night
jasna got knocked out cold on the gravel
somehow (and took quite a while to come around)
and of other more playground-like goings-on
in sight of that store (though nothing
much of its *inside* at all). mainly, though?
the taste of bread. just like back in zagreb.
gee it’s good.

now this is the strange part:
it wasn’t until *after* i’d started
drafting a blog post (still in
my considering-apparatus you
understand) that i thought
of proust. imagine that.

Posted in 60s, Books, DAADD, Old-school Friends, Rambles | Leave a Comment »

bucky’s christmas caper

Posted by vlorbik on December 25, 2009

wally wood art for the season. stan freberg too.

Posted in 60s, Comics | 2 Comments »

Posted by vlorbik on November 25, 2009

Local Bookstores, Social Hubs, and Mutualization (via JohnDCook in tw’r).

cartoonist captured on video.

dangle on airborne. those are some cool-lookin pill boxen. i was just at a drugstore. i recognized the style as his right away. evidently they’re pretty popular; there’s a store-brand knockoff.

samjshah’s genesis. any math teacher here not having read this: go at once.

in these times on fred hampton.

Posted in 60s, Books, Comics, Warz | 2 Comments »