Thursday, July 23, 2009

Keep It Weird: City of Santa Cruz, CA

I keep going back. Maybe because my leg hairs beg me to or maybe it's the comical vision of a homeless man dressed in all patent leather dancing with a lone fire hydrant or maybe it's the childhood nostalgia of attending Westlake Elementary school and my daily walk to get there through deserted parking lots dotted with baby shoots of Eucalyptus trees and random VW Scooby vans filled with strange noises and smoke all while clutching my fresh pack of Reese's Peanut Butter Cups purchased at the 7-11 for 50 cents flat. Nonetheless the much debated Surf City is one of my most favorite places on planet earth.

I went back Independence Day weekend to see my brother, John (the weather man, Dr. Thunder), and his wife, Crystal (the fire girl). Little Miss home fries Banana Wonder got spoiled galore with craftsmanship baked goodies ala Crystal using up as many pantry items as possible before their big move to Moscow, ID (whaa?). She whipped up these beauties in a pinch with some cake mix using back of the box standard procedures. I watched with my bare eyes as she mixed red tub store bought frosting with powdered sugar + water combo and proceeded to stuff the white fluff into personally engineered piping bags and make Sprinkles Cupcakes look like a complete toolbag.

And then this novel Spanakopita made with whole wheat phyllo (conveniently found at your local Whole Foods), swiss chard from the backyard, feta, and tofu. This version of the Greek dish we ate growing up was masterminded by my uber health conscious brother John.
The phyllo was constructed with minimal amounts of olive oil, although I suspect my mom, a butter empress, to have sent my brother away on a trash emptying mish to spike a few layers with melted butter.

Obnoxious Greek Found. Wha? Really? Waita sec, is that really paint? Yup. Mr. Panos

And the tye dye makes this meatie bastard look ready for a pint of fresh Kombacha tea. Did you think I was kidding? They have it on tap in downtown. Why not just wheeze the juice Encino Man style while you're at it. Foraging for private coves heading north on HWY 1 is a must, just beware of naked middle aged hippie sunbathers, unless you embrace the Shock and Awe.

Or just use seaweed as a dog leash.

California Poppies found in front of Long's Drug.
Let the weirdness continue! And I leave you with my mom's creation designed our last night: ouzo - tomato - kinezo empress. I love me some Santa Cruz!
Santa Cruz, CA

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