I have perfected a homemade anchovy/garlic salad dressing. The recipe is really quite simple. Slowly stir olive oil into a mixture of minced anchovy fillets, microplaned garlic, red pepper flakes, fresh squeezed lemon juice and Kosher salt. The notable ingredient is the anchovy fillets. I selected a can of “flat” anchovies for my first attempt at my friend’s recipe. As I drained the little fish, I noticed bones in my strainer, akin to slivers of glass. These were not the soft bones found in canned salmon. These were choke-at-the-dining-room-table fish bones. And then there was the indescribable aroma of the tiny canned fish. I was convinced the anchovies had spoiled. While sharing my disappointing anchovy experience with friends, I was informed that anchovies could, indeed, have an unpleasant aroma. Between the bones and the smell, these little fish were deemed an unworthy ingredient and thrown into the trash. Even without the anchovies, the lemon/garlic salad dressing was quite tasty. I have now discovered that packed in glass “fillet” anchovies is the better choice for a crowd pleasing salad dressing.
I then turned my attention to improving my flexibility and strength. A few friends have taken serious tumbles – separated/broken collar bones, fractured ribs and scarey ugly bruises – while riding their bikes. I question the wisdom of these over-50 cyclists careening down embankments and maneuvering the obstacle laden subdivision sidewalks. Fortunately, I do not own a bike. I do own a yoga mat and a Smart TV with fitness programs. This past week I moved the coffee table out of the way and unrolled my mat. I sampled one beginner yoga video and quickly realized that my definition of “beginner” was not the same as that of the young svelte instructor. Perhaps a basic “stretch” class would be better suited to my physical condition. The lesson was only 20 minutes. Surely, I could endure a 20-minute stretching session. The instructor, whom I shall call Jane, a young athletic woman, gently guided her viewers through the various upper body stretches, reminding all not to overdo. Over the years I have used personal trainers and have been a member of numerous fitness clubs. While I have a current gym membership, I am not, however, ready to resume attendance during the virus age in Texas. I was familiar with the stretching exercises offered and kept up. Jane then focused on the lower body – quads, hamstrings, glutes – the BIG muscles. I was seated on the floor in an unflattering wishbone position as Jane explained the pigeon pose. I listened and watched. If you have ever folded the tip of a chicken wing under the drumette, you get the idea of the pigeon pose. I felt as if I had been sentenced to yoga hell. The next position Jane presented was the frog. My mind flashbacked to high school biology on frog dissection day. While a less harmful pose for an entry level stretcher, my attempt was laughable from any angle in the room. I finished my stretching session without injury and am determined to stay flexible absent the pigeon and the frog poses. I see a friendly game of softball in my future. Loosen up everyone. I may be calling.