CHECKING OUR MAIL
la this a great country or what? As long as there’s a box big enough, anything can be ordered by mail. Our new favorite discovery, however, doesn’t come in a very big box art all, it’s only priced like it should. It’s caviar, from the Caviarteria, otherwise known as the caviar center of the U.S.A. From their offices in New York and Beverly Hills (of course), these guys will ship your order, anywhere, overnight. Call them at 1-800-4-CAVIAR.
JUST JAZZ, MAN
listening There’s nothing rarer than jazz on the radio. Real jazz, not the cloying, New Age ear candy some stations call jazz. For the pure-dee stuff, check out KKDA on Sunday afternoons. That’s when local jazz multi-instrumentalist Roger Boykin puts on his disc jockey’s hat and imparts insider’s knowledge during his show, Just Jazz. Boykin plays John Coltrane, Hank Crawford, Charlie Parker, world famous home boy David Newman, and other cognoscenti-approved greats most stations won’t touch. He identifies sidemen, gives an occasional critique on solos, and features interviews with local luminaries such as James Clay and Big Al Dupree. “Jazz” is a nebulous concept, like “art,” and if you’ve ever wondered what it really is, give Roger a listen. -Tim Schuller
Roger Boy kin’s radio program Just Jazz is just that. Tune in Sundays from 3 to 6 p.m. on KKDA-AM 730 and you’ll know what we mean.Poetry Makes a Comeback
TRENDS Poetry got its start making the spoken word memorable, but most of us recall memorizing poetry as simply cruel homework. However, once the specter of sadistic schoolteachers is exorcised, it’s possible to discover why more and more people are making time for rhyme.
It’s easy to stake your claim to any part of the worded world. All it takes to own a parcel of poetry’s vast estate is practice.
Think of poetry as the mantra of the Nineties and schedule a few quiet moments each day to work on your recitation. Refurbish the old chestnut you gagged on in grade school or marry a half-remembered classic to your mind. The meditative qualities of memorization will soon have you hooked. For inspiration, you may want to check out local poets hangouts and tune into the poetry of our own special place and time.
The Live Poet Society (357-8434) meets at the Walnut Hill branch library the third Tuesday of every month, and the Poetry Happy Hour (821-5128) graces third Thursdays at the Lakewood branch library. Shakespeare Books (821-9188) schedules monthly events. Entertainment venues like Over Dave’s Head (748-7111), Club Dada (744-3232), and The Open Stage (520-3334) are also scheduling poetry productions.
-Phyllis Williams and John Trimble
RECIPE Now that we’ve mastered the art of designer vinaigrettes, it’s time to turn our talents elsewhere-jazzing up that age-old additive, olive oil. Most any combo of fresh or dried herbs will produce a fine-tasting oil-the only rule of thumb is to use a high-quality olive oil when pairing the two. And remember to use a bottle that can be tightly sealed-that’s important in the steeping process. Following is one of our favorite recipes,
Perfect poured over hot pasta or used as a dip with warm Italian bread.
Hot Spiced Oil
● 3 strips of orange peel
● 1 long red chili pepper, dried
● 1 whole bay leaf
● 3 whole allspice
● 6 whole black
● Light olive oil
Secure strips of orange peel on a wooden skewer Place chili pepper (use more than one if you want it spicier), bay leaf, whole allspice, and peppercorns in a glass bottle along with the skewer. Fill to the top with olive oil and seal the bottle. Steep at least two weeks before using.
Local raconteur George Toomer says his new book, Before I Forget, Fifties Reflections Through a Jaded Eye. will be in a bookstore near you come February. That’s a young version of George, pictured here, with his childhood friend, the Easter Bunny.
BARBARELLA WORKS OUT
Like every other American female intent on reducing body fat, I’ve followed workout career with awe and a sense of amazement. While the rest of us battle ballooning body parts, Jane just keeps getting better. When it(and great bodies) she has been my ideal, my inspiration-a reason to continue sweating. Until now. After trying out her newonly surmise that something serious has happened to Jane. Call it manic depression, call it Ted Turner, call it whatever you want to, but woman who appeared in the best-selling Jane Fonda’s New Workout, or in the immensely popular Jane Fonda’s Complete Workout.
This Jane has squeezed herself and her new breast implants into a black lace thong-leotard with matching tights, accented with black-leather (I’m not kidding) workout boots. She’s also traded her workout studio for a rooftop, complete with flashing strobe lights and a bevy of backup aerobicizers that look like Solid Gold dancers dressed as the Village People. Imagine a musical version of Barbarella, and you get the picture. But, if you think that’s weird, just wait. There’s more. There’s the routine. Suffice it to say that you have to be a) a choreographer, b) a Cowboy cheerleader, or c) you guessed it, a Solid Gold dancer, to be able to follow this video. Jane, this is not exercise. This is a mid-life crisis.
THE ENCYCLOPEDIA OF BAD TASTE
Reading this book reminded me of my mother-not that she has bad taste or anything. Quite the opposite. It’s just that I was raised in a world neatly divided into the two separate and distinct categories of good taste and, you guessed it, bad taste. Because of my early training I think I have a pretty good grip on what constitutes bad taste, but if I’m ever unsure, I need only pick up the phone and call home. Works every time. At the voice my posture improves. There are quite a few things that The Encyclopedia of Bad Taste ($29.99 at a bookstore near you) and my mother agree on, like long, fake fingernails, Las Vegas, and Elvis Presley memorabilia, but boy did they miss the boat by not Including a few other items, which mom and I know are perennial examples of bad taste. From the top: white shoes, public displays of affection, tuxedos in any color other than black, cheap hose, men who wear jewelry, Ultrasuede, dark lashes, accepting gifts from men, chewing gum, toothpicks, sweating, someone stop me, I could go on forever.
Anyway; reading The Encyclopedia of Bad Taste is like driving too fast or flirting with Frenchmen in black turtlenecks- you know you shouldn’t, but you just can’t help it. There’s something oddly appealing (in a perverse kind of way) which is why this book Is popping up on coffee tables everywhere. Well, almost everywhere.
A Visit With Jane Roberts Wood
PEOPLE Dallas novelist Jane Roberts Wood says that being a woman cramps her style. Male writers go out “drinking in the bars and it’s considered part of their job. It’s hard for female writers to get to do that, but I think it would be good for my writing,” she says.
Fans of her novel, The Train to Estelline, don’t think her writing could be improved. It is a mannerly and delicate interlacing of rural Texas personages and dotty dowagers who can chirp and expand for hours over the divine ordainments of a muffin or a quilt. One Baptist lady wrote to say she keeps it “alongside her Bible.”
Her fans will be happy to hear that her new novel, A Place Called Sweet Shrub, is out now and is the second in her planned trilogy of events in the life of our sidesaddle ingenue, Miss Lucinda Richards, formerly of Estelline, Texas.
Wood, a teacher at Brookhaven College, just returned from the University of Tennessee where she was a visiting author. Dell, her publisher, will expect her to make the bookstore publicity circuit before long.
But, oh my! Miss Jane was seenrecently knocking back brews at an OakCliff bar in the company of a tough-looking old cloudburst with a cauliflowernose and a grizzled muzzle. But, thenI’m not talking. -Tom Dodge
Wheat Grass Fever
REMEDIES Out ill the trendsetting Pacific Northwest, fitness freaks are not smoking grass-they’re drinking it: The hot health kick in Seattle and Portland is wheat grass juice, a potent greenish-black potion produced from sprouted wheat and tossed back daily by devotees who line up for a morning shot of the natural upper to jump-start their day.
And it’s trickling this way-at Whole Foods Market, where wheat grass is set out in flats in the produce section, regular customers have long, scissored swatches of the tender shoots for salads, mostly; but store staffers report growing numbers of requests for the juice from patrons who have heard or read about its positive tonic qualities. Besides being a complete source of protein, adherents claim one ounce of wheat grass juice contains more nutrients than two pounds of vegetables, is a dynamic cell rejuvenator and cell-cleansing detoxifier, and is effective in diet control.
How does the emerald elixir taste? Like essence of new-mown meadow is as close as we can come-a grassy, sweet, knock-your-socks-off jolt most people prefer to dilute or mix with other juices. The catch is, it can’t be kept-the strong stuff oxidizes so rapidly it must be consumed moments after it’s extracted. Which may be one reason Whole Foods produce attendants make it only on request, in an industrial-strength machine kept in the store’s back room. What you get is a plastic cuplet filled with exactly one ounce. What you do is toss it off on the spot, and wait to see if you feel the claimed electric kick. We didn’t, but someone must-despite the lack of promotion, Dallas shot-seekers are going through two flats of Whole Foods* fresh-grown wheat grass a day at 99 cents a pop, a store staffer says. Whole Foods Market, 2218 Greenville. -Hetty Cook