Monday, April 4, 2011

False Hopes & F'real Chili

 I sort of picked up a long time ago, I don't remember when; not to really hope for much. Not to have to much faith in anything, or anyone. Maybe more specifically not to be disappointed when and if someone let me down.

 At the same time, battling that has always been a thought that people are generally good. I see and appreciate good actions, gestures, emotions and intentions and feel them like they were done to me. In an empathetic way, in a very big way. It aways overcomes me when any of these things happen.

 I once heard, "never doubt that at any moment something extraordinary can happen". It was huge to me. I think because as much as I generally don't hope or dream, I do of course have hopes and dreams. It's just very hard for me to stay constant in them. Almost as if those two trains of thought are battling within me and one wins depending on the situation, person, environment or hormone of the day (or sometimes hour).

 There have been times I have wondered if I needed medication.

 I have taken medication for a very short time that was in the same timeframe as a very hard time in my life. I went off it when the prescription ran out, that was also the same week I moved back home with my daughter from leaving my husband in Philadelphia.

 That was a tough month.

 I couldn't begin to figure out whether it had to do with (a.) Coming off of the medication cold turkey, or (b.) Moving back into my Mothers at the age of 27 and starting from scratch with my 2 and a half year old daughter in tow. Living out of a suitcase and sleeping on a pull out sofa in a basement living room, my daughter being in a pack 'n' play in the spare room and having no clue what I was going to do with my life other then just breath. Or maybe a little of both, (a.) and (b.).

 I came to the conclusion that I was open enough of a person, had friends and family that were also themselves, open with me that until medication came up as a real possibility; I would seek out every means of dealing with the battle on my own.

 To me, people that are always hoping to win the lottery, to make it big,  waiting until (this date), when ____ happens everything will be good; to me those people are postponing their happiness.

 To me, the people that have huge dreams and seek them out and achieve them are to be admired. Because for me, the fear of failing or where to even start is so beyond what I feel is within me. It is actually so much bigger than me that I couldn't even pin point what my dream would be. It's almost as if my mind won't let me place it. Sometimes I feel  like the journey is what would bring me right to it. That is if I ever started the journey.

 There is a part of me that thinks what I have within me is huge. There is another part that thinks it's what every child starts off thinking. Whether that feeling gets cultivated or neglected is dependant on the outcome. Then I wonder if maybe a combination of the latter and that individual person having that light in them no matter what anyone else ever does or says with it.

 There are even some days I think that my losing weight, or moving to a different city with more to offer or just some grand opportunity will present itself and any one of those things will be "the thing", that brings me to the "huge thing".

 Because of the thought about postponing happiness, the other thought of me having something huge within in me gets covered up with the notion that I, myself am postponing my happiness and need to be happy with today. Right now. 

 I heard something last night when watching a show called "Our America", that spoke to me. It was a show on faith healers. It focused on a man and group in North Carolina and showed these crowds coming in. Every one of them stead fast in the thought that there was no other option, they were being healed. No "what if's" or back up plans. There was a man, a paraplegic who was absolutely certain he would walk out of that building.

 Lisa Ling, who was spending time with him and interviewing him asked him, "what if you don't?". His response: "I will."

 By the end of this show I found myself on the edge of my seat as the healer walked up to him. It was as if his faith and hope was strong enough for everyone around him. I could feel it through the screen.  I just thought, "Let this happen for him. Please. He needs it. What will happen to him if this doesn't happen. Please "whoever", let this happen for him."

 He did not walk out of there.

 You know what his response to it was? "not today, I suppose". That's it. He had not lost hope. Not one bit. Just wasn't in the cards today.

 Lisa Ling said something that really made me think. She said, "Maybe it was me that expected to much. Maybe there are no false hopes."

 Maybe there are no false hopes.

 Maybe a hope that when proven wrong, strikes you down and leaves you stricken with negativity and doubt; was never really hope. Maybe you had that negativeness and doubt to begin with so it/he/she was sort of doomed to failure because it's what you expected in the first place. You never really had hope. You had delayed doubt.

 Maybe you can look at someone with all the hope and faith in the world within them for something you see as not scientifically or humanly possible and feel bad because you see someone who is going to get  let  down. It might even make you angry at the person you feel is giving them this "false hope".

 But then they don't get knocked down. Maybe because they're different than you. They're hope is a real hope. An unwavering hope of pure good. Maybe nothing can knock that hope down. Maybe it's what's kept them in this life. Maybe it's what's gotten them through what otherwise would have been insufferable. Maybe no one else was ever responsible for, contributing to, or taking away from this hope.

 So maybe there are no false hopes.

 Maybe any hope...... is hope.

Boiler Maker Tailgate Chili

 Here is the link to the original recipe. Mine has only changed or missing a couple things, but here is the link and then I will put the recipe I used below.

 I have never seen that many reviews on anything on this site. So I had to try it.


2 pounds ground top sirloin

  • 1 pound mild Italian sausage
  • 3 (15 ounce) cans chili beans, drained
  • 2 (28 ounce) cans diced tomatoes with juice
  • 1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 2 sachets beef bouillon
  • 1 bottle of beer
  • 1/4 cup chili powder
  • 1 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons hot pepper sauce (e.g. Tabasco™)
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon white sugar
  • 1 (8 ounce) package shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 1 container sour cream


  1. Heat a large stock pot over medium-high heat. Crumble the ground sirloin and sausage into the hot pan, and cook until evenly browned. Drain off excess grease.
  2. Pour in the chili beans, spicy chili beans, diced tomatoes and tomato paste. Add the onion, celery, green and red bell peppers, bouillon, and beer. Season with chili powder, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, oregano, cumin, hot pepper sauce, basil, salt, pepper, cayenne, paprika, and sugar. Stir to blend, 
  3. then cover and simmer over low heat for 3 hours, stirring occasionally.
  4. After 3 hours, taste, and adjust salt, pepper, and chili powder if necessary. The longer the chili simmers, the better it will taste. Remove from heat and serve, or refrigerate, and serve the next day.
  5. To serve, ladle into bowls, and top with shredded Cheddar cheese and a dollop of sour cream.


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