Thursday, July 21, 2011

You've come a long way, baby.

My mom has been a cigarette smoker for as long as I can remember.  When I was a kid, she bought cigarettes by the carton . . . Virginia Slims . . . and kept them in a kitchen cabinet.  Of course, it was understood that we, my sister and I, were not to touch them.

No worries there.  Because, although my sister and I were the poster children for sibling rivalry,  one thing we did agree on is that cigarette smoking was a dirty, nasty, filthy habit.  Neither of us did anything to disguise our disgust with our mother’s smoking and we both constantly lectured her on the dangers of puffing the cancer sticks.

Imagine my shock when I came upon my sister casually sucking on a lung dart like she was some sort of femme fatale in a film noir movie.  Oh yeah . . . I remember my reaction as clear as day . . . “I’m telling, Mom!!”

Her head whipped around, she flung the ciggie to the side and the chase was on.  And, lordie, you bet your sweet bippy I was running for my very life.

If Mom found out that my sister was tokin’ a ‘rette she was toast . . . you didn’t mess with my Mom and you didn’t touch my Mom’s stuff.  That woman could dole out punishment like no one’s business.

So I ran around the house with my sister in hot pursuit.  She must have caught me and beaten me senseless because I have no recollection of the outcome of the chase and I don’t recall her being punished for that little breach of the rules.

As gross as I think smoking is, when I was in my early twenties I thought I would give it a go.  I swiped a ciggy from a girlfriend’s pack and puffed that smokestack all the way down to the filter.  And, I got a wicked good buzz . . . wowzers.  So, I copped two or three more over the course of a week and squirreled them away for when I could smoke them in private.  Yes, in private . . . I didn’t want to look like a hypocrite after all!  My opportunity to smoke those babies came and I sucked them back one after the other . . . boom boom boom . . . oh yeah, my head was floating . . . ah the bliss.  

Uhm . . . yeah, for about five minutes.  And, then all I felt like doing was barf up a lung.  Oh my goodness, I was sick . . . for hours and hours.  I’m pretty sure I was close to death.  I had to suck it up like nothing was wrong because there was no way I was going to tell anyone I was sick and what had caused me to be sick.

I can’t even think about smoking a cigarette without gagging just a little.

Lesson learned?  You betcha!  That’s not to say I’m opposed to enjoying an occasional cigar . . . but that’s not quite the same thing. 


Cher’s Roast Beast Sammy

I shameless adapted my recipe from the Campbell’s Dripping Roast Beef Sandwiches with Melted Provolone sandwich.  Why?  Because I am me and must not conform and I adjusted the recipe based on the ingredients I liked and what I had on hand . . . I’m sure the Campbell’s version is good by the results of mine was nothing short of astounding.  NOM!

  • 4 Tablespoons Butter, Softened
  • 2 Teaspoons Chopped Garlic
  • 1 Can Progresso French Onion Soup
  • 1 Pound Thinly Sliced Pepper Crusted Roast Beef
  • 4 Soft Hoagie Rolls
  • 8 Slices Deli Provolone Cheese
  • 8 Chopped Hot Pickled Pepperoncini

Heat the oven to 400°F.

Mash the garlic with the butter and spread over two hoagie rolls cut in half.  Place in oven until brown.

Top with two slices of cheese each and place in oven until cheese is melted.

Heat the soup and beef in a large skillet over medium-high heat to a boil. Turn down to simmer until ready to use.

Divide the beef evenly among the rolls. Top the beef with the cheese slices and place the sandwiches onto a baking sheet.

Bake until the sandwiches are toasted and the cheese is melted.  Top each sandwich with 1/1 of the chopped peppers.

Spoon the soup mixture onto the sandwiches.  

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