Daily Prompt: Critcism – why bother

Feldbrunnen to Langendorf 08.02 (9)

At the moment we are overwhelmed with posters on the local roads showing candidates of various political parties for our Kanton in Switzerland. Local elections are approaching for members of parliament. Everyone seems to know everyone in my Kanton/State, so it should not be such a problem. I do not bother, although I know I sbould. Criticise? Of course I have my likes and dislikes, but my late mother-in-law always said they do what they want to do one way or the other, although even she had her preferences.  I do not criticise, or praise. We are bombarded with political discussions on the TV, even on Facebook in my little contact area, everyone is the best and wants only the  best for their part of the world. They are all convinced that their way is the right way.

Of course when the voting is finished, everyone goes back to sleep. Do other countries in the world know that we are now confronted with critical judgement in our part of the world – of course not, why should they, some places do not even know that the Kanton of Solothurn exists.

We all have facebook if we really feel disappointed and betrayed. You can register your criticism there daily. Of course there is the choice to eliminate everything you do not want to see, but that is not my way. I like to keep an open mind. I am capable of deciding myself what is genuine and what is not.  I do not block various other opinions of important matters affecting world affairs, I let them all in. I do not partake in political discussions, just might make a like now and again as I really do not want to be certified as one of those that actually agree.

What really amazes me is the source of the dynamic reports of what is happening. There are quotes from various news sources that I have never heard of. There is no point in mentioning any partiular one. If it is the Washington Post or the New York times, even the Daily Telegraph, OK, they know what they are saying – national newspapers, but it is the little reports with silly news names that are so unserious. I am basically British-Swiss, so what happens in other countries, is none of my business. No, it is, if it affects world peace and world politics.

And now I will criticse the last apple tart that Mr. Swiss made. It was good as ever, but somehow the pepper mill got in the way and the tart definitely has a sharp taste. However I believe today it is even fashion to produce chilli flavoured chocolate, so perhaps he was in an inventive mood. No. 1 son also agreed, there was definitely a touch of black pepper somewhere.

Feldbrunnen to Langendorf 08.02 (2)

Daily Prompt: Critcism – why bother

Daily Prompt: Sad but True

Tell us about the harshest, most difficult to hear — but accurate — criticism you’e ever gotten. Does it still apply?

Photographers, artists, poets: show us HARSH.

If I was asked perhaps forty years ago I would probably have written a record blog in length, accusing the world of not understanding my talent, being ignorant of my gifts but today, I do not even hear criticism, and am also in the lucky position to be surrounded by comments which are more in the constructive line of things.

Of course there are some people, some places, where criticism is the daily bread. At work it is a pastime, not even a hobby. What would a chief be when he would not criticise? He would be a failure. He is under the impression he has to keep his staff on their toes, grovelling for favours and living in fright that they might do something wrong. Luckily I am gifted with a thick skin, often a duck’s back. You know the one where comments just run down like water. I always felt so sorry for the workmates I knew who seemed to spend their lives apologising and felt they had to justify every action and comment they made, before they were asked.

Somehow a comment remained that a colleague once said in the office. She was new and was learning the routine and was one of the competent workers. My chef was OK, I had no problem with him. If you made him a coffee in the morning and let him read the newspaper in peace, he was a fantastic bloke. He was god’s gift to women (he thought), but I always treasured his way to leave me alone with the work. Now and again he would ask a question, but with my natural talent for avoiding negative situations, I would tell him I am looking into it and that seemed to suffice.

Then one day this fairly new person in the office asked “What does he have for a function?”. I stifled my laugh, but thought about it. She had hit the nail on the head. In future I did not hear the negative criticisms, questions, or even try to think how this human ballast looked when it stood under the shower, those words spoke volumes. I survived him in the office to cut it short. I had an early retirement because I was probably considered eventually as the living dead, and I was costing too much. The company was suffering under the economy.

Tomato-chorizo-spring onion sauce with spaghetti

Does anyone ever dare to criticise my cooking? Sometimes. Who am I to judge if the criticism is warranted or not. I remember the famous words of my mother, when I was a victim of her daily cooking.

“I pity your old man when you get married, he will be living on fish fingers.”

To explain “old man”: it is an endearing cockney term for husband and fish fingers were the revolution in fish cookery. Most children at that time did not know that a fish had fins and swum. They grew up with the impression that they were born into the world shaped as fingers, coated with bread crumbs and fried. I was lucky, before this glorious invention I had seen and eaten real fish.

However, my mother found this a brilliant invention and at least once a week this formed part of my diet. Was it to be doubted that “my old man” would eat this in his marital bliss. Of course now and again I serve this delicious revolutionary meal, but I also branch out into other directions. I do not actually hear criticism from my cooking victims, I just notice when the aromat is added to the food, more salt and perhaps some other saline spice. The mention of it being hospital food I ignore. My taste buds still work perfectly but as you grow older it might be that some people need more salt in their food (notice, no names mentioned).

The dish in the photo (which I photographed as an unforgettable memory) is an own composition. I quite like hot and some time ago discovered a Spanish sausage known as chorizo, nice an spicy flavoured with a good portion of paprika chile I think. So I developed this idea and cooked it in a tomato sauce with spring onions. I found this fitted perfectly with Italian pasta, preferably penne. This is the proof that “my old man” is not just fed with food, but with events, with creations and he has survived. Thus this dish is known as Chrorizo al penne di mama Angloswiss. I think I will cook fish fingers on Friday for lunch with chips as a change.

Daily Prompt: Sad but True

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