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Archive for the category “Time”

the flavor of my reflection

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAUnavoidably, time passes, things change, and the end of a year often brings up reflections on the differences between then (whenever that was) and now. I recently came across this post written in July 2009 for a previous blog and was taken aback by just how much things have changed since I wrote it.

rocking my world with nam sod

I found when I awoke on the dirty floor of our garage, with blood coming out of my nose and Zak frantically shaking me . . . that I had a sudden craving for nam sod. —Barbara Fisher, in her food blog, Tigers & Strawberries

Too funny! I was already thinking about nam sod when I came across this line, and it made me laugh out loud. Nam sod—a Thai salad made with ground pork, ginger, red onion, lemon or lime juice, the obligatory fish sauce, cilantro, and chili peppers, garnished with peanuts and served on lettuce leaves—is definitely one of the seven food wonders of my world. It has that combination of cilantro and ginger that transports me to another dimension, at least as prepared by Orchid Thai restaurant in San Anselmo, California. Some recipes call for mint in addition to, or (horror!) in place of the cilantro. Orchid Thai eschews the mint; I’m fine with that.

I got to share an order of nam sod when I visited the Bay Area last month, and my traveling companion, who’d never tasted it before, unfortunately found it nearly as delicious as I do. I would have been willing to consume her portion had she not found it to her liking. Still, half an order of nam sod is better than no nam sod at all. When I lived in the Bay Area, I’d go to Orchid Thai on my birthday to have this dish. Nam sod would be what I’d want as a last meal, although hopefully no one will be asking me to make that choice any time soon.

The name sort of sounds like something you’d shout while raising your fist—or a sword—into the air: Nam sod! Right? Which is exactly how I feel every time the waiter sets a plate of it down in front of me. Nam sod!

Well, I became vegetarian over three years ago, so it’s been quite a while since I’ve tasted nam sod. Yes, the idea of it still kind of makes my mouth water, but no, I wouldn’t eat it even if a beautifully garnished serving were placed in front of me.

In February of this year, I was diagnosed with a couple of heart conditions. The meds I’m on as a result require some dietary restrictions. I’m not, for example, supposed to have any cilantro or ginger. I attempt to be reasonable, but I can’t say I’m 100% compliant.

Even worse, Orchid Thai is no longer in business. On the one hand, that does make it a little easier to come to terms with never having nam sod again, since theirs was the best. On the other hand, they served other dishes that I would really like to taste again. There were definitely more delicious meals to be enjoyed there.

Finally, the traveling companion of this story—my friend, Patricia—passed away last week. We had many good times together after the hiking trip that took us from Albuquerque to the Bay Area and to dinner at Orchid Thai. And as it happens there’s a restaurant in Albuquerque named Thai Orchid that we frequented numerous times. But it wasn’t quite the same. Patricia and I definitely had more adventures left in us, more trips to take, more meals to enjoy.

In the spirit of the original post, here’s to good food, good hiking, and good friends. Nam sod, Patricia. Nam sod!

time, time, time, see what’s become of me


Atomicclock (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Lately, I’ve had more things to do than time in which to do them, i.e., I feel as though I don’t have enough time. I know–and you know–that time is not a commodity, much as we often treat it as one. But it’s difficult to stop thinking of it that way. When a friend commented in a blog post that there was no way to create a savings account for time, I immediately perked up. Wouldn’t that be great? I want one of those!

When I met the
Grandfather of
Time, he said
it was no use

Even after all
these years he
still had too
much to do.

Running Behind (Brian Andreas)

That doesn’t give me much hope that my relationship with time, and the lack thereof, is likely to change anytime soon.

what is time, anyway? it’s:

  • a nonspatial cotinuum in which events occur in apparently irreversible succession from the past through the present to the future;
  • an interval separating two points on this continuum, measured essentially by selecting a regularly recurring event, such as the sunrise, and counting the number of its occurrences during the interval; duration;
  • a number, as of years, days, or minutes, representing such an interval;
  • a similar number representing a specific point, such as the present, as reckoned from an arbitrary past point on this continuum;
  • a suitable opportune moment or season;
  • an interval marked by similar events, conditions, or phenomena; especially a span of years; era;
  • one’s heyday;
  • a moment or period designated, as by custom, for a given activity; harvest time;
  • an occasion;
  • an appointed or fated moment, especially of death;
  • one of several instances;
  • a prison sentence;
  • the period spent working;
  • the rate of speed of a measured activity;
  • the characteristic beat of musical rhythm.

what does time do? it:

  • passes
  • expires
  • cycles
  • drags
  • hangs heavy
  • flies
  • flows
  • never arrives
  • marks changes
  • stands still
  • places limits
  • ages us
  • saddens us
  • gladdens us
  • gives us hope
  • preoccupies us
  • enslaves us
  • provides us with information
  • is money?

what do we do with time? we:

  • have time
  • have no time
  • save time
  • spend time
  • long for past times
  • want more time
  • look forward to future time
  • waste time
  • savor time
  • hoard time
  • pass time
  • lose time
  • lose track of time
  • fear time
  • serve (“do”) time
  • make time
  • take time
  • keep time
  • keep track of time
  • while away time
  • seize the moment/day
  • manage time
  • take time off
  • use time wisely

but does time even exist?

We have sophisticated machines, like atomic clocks, to measure time. But measuring “time” doesn’t prove its physical existence. Clocks are rhythmic things. We use the rhythms of some events (like the ticking of clocks) to time other events (like the rotation of the earth). This isn’t time, but rather, a comparison of events. We called these manmade devices “clocks.”

But these are just events, not to be confused with time. Indeed, one could measure time by measuring the melting of ice on a hot day. We might even devise a plan to meet for tea at two ice-cube melts or 50 top-spins, which ever “time piece” you each happen to have on hand. Clocks just have springs and things. People get sidestepped into believing time exists as a physical entity because we’ve invented clocks.

From a biocentric point of view, time is the inner process that animates consciousness and experience. The existence of clocks, which ostensibly measure “time,” doesn’t in any way prove time itself exists.

–Robert Lanza, M.D., Psychology Today

Well, whether time exists or not, we experience it; we live as if it is not only real, but often a cruel taskmaster. It might be more effective to try to make friends with time instead of fighting with it all the time.

I’ve already “spent” nearly two ice-cube melts on this post, but before I end, here’s a song about time from a long time ago:

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