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July 15, 2008:

THE MINCING TUNA

Bruce Kimmel Photograph bk's notes

Well, dear readers, it is quite late and I’m quite tired and I must quite write these here notes in a hurry because my eyes are blurry. I had anticipated beginning the notes an hour ago but I got a late-night call from the fellows who wrote the musical that will be at NYMF. They asked further advice about many things, and I gave them yays and nays, as well as a few thoughts on what I’d read of their show. So, I’m starting these here notes at the stroke of midnight, which is, of course, when they should be posted. But never fear, I shall write like the wind, which is, I suppose, better than writing like the rain and the snow and the sleet. Before I go any further may I just say that dieting is hard, especially at my age. I’ve now been jogging two miles every day for the past two weeks. I’ve been eating very reasonable meals and pretty much keeping to under 1500 calories a day, and keeping the fat grams at a reasonable number. And yes, it’s clear that I’ve lost a few pounds because my pants fit better and are looser. But what used to take a week now takes three weeks or a month and it’s very frustrating. And there are certain days when you just have to eat more food. So far, that’s only happened once in the two weeks since I got serious, and I think what I ate isn’t going to cause weight gain or if it does, not more than a pound. But, it’s frustrating that the pounds don’t disappear faster, and yet there is nothing much to be done about it. It was the same two years ago when I dropped the twenty-seven pounds – it just took forever, especially at the beginning. End of diet rant. Speaking of diet rant, yesterday was a very busy little day. I got up very early, did some stuff on the computer and then headed over to Grant Geissman’s home recording studio. I comped the vocals on two songs, and then we mixed them right then and there. They sounded very good, and we sent them off via e-mail. That took about two-and-a-half hours, and then I came back home and jogged two miles. Then I ate the rest of my tuna pasta salad, which was most yummilicious. I must say that for such an easy dish to make, the people who’ve had it at my Christmas Eve Do find it completely addictive, as do I. In fact, here’s the recipe – you can spread out this amount of pasta over two days, and the entire cost of the meal, presuming you have some of the ingredients already is under five dollars.

1 pound of large elbow macaroni
Mayonnaise (Best Foods ONLY)
1 can Bumble Bee all-white tuna in water (or any brand you like – but in water)
1 red onion

Boil water and pour in the noodles. When cooked, drain with very cold water. Then put the noodles into some sort of serving thing.

Add the tuna (mince it as you’re taking it from the can), then chop up about a quarter of the red onion into small, thin pieces and put that in with the tuna.

Add salt and pepper and mix it all up. Then add three tablespoons of Best Foods mayonnaise and mix that all up, thoroughly and completely. Put the serving thing in the refrigerator and let it chill for a few hours (I sometimes put it in the freezer to chill it faster). When chilled, take it out when you’re ready to eat and add one more tablespoon of mayonnaise and thoroughly mix it in.

Serve (you may want to add a bit more salt, if that suits you – I know I do).

That’s all there is to it. It’s really quite excellent and very filling, but if you split it over two days, it comes in at about 1000 calories a day. If you don’t love mayonnaise, just use the three tablespoons, but when it’s chilling, the mayo usually gets absorbed, so I always find that adding the extra tablespoon (or half-tablespoon) is a good thing. Mixing it thoroughly is key (I really don’t like mayonnaise all that much, so I REALLY mix it a lot), as is mincing the tuna and dicing the onion in really thin pieces. Mincing The Tuna – that’s the title of my next novel. Or maybe if it’s a mystery it should be called The Curious Case of The Mincing Tuna, a story about a musical theater-loving tuna who is accused of murdering a butch crab. What the HELL am I talking about? I got waylaid by a mincing tuna. Where was I? Oh, yes, I came home and ate my tuna pasta salad. Then I did more stuff, and also listened to CDs, and then it was finally time to go back to Grant’s to do two more songs. We’d already gotten an e-mail from the singer who was thrilled with what he’d heard, so that was nice. I comped the vocals, we mixed the songs and sent them off, and then I headed home.

When I got home, there was some leftover plain pasta in the refrigerator, so I heated a tiny bit of it and put some red sauce on it and it was great. It’s the first night where I feel like maybe I ate too much today, but one has to be allowed to do that every couple of weeks or there’s no way to stay on the diet. In any case, I hope I didn’t gain any weight back.

Last night, I finally finished watching a motion picture on DVD entitled Romulus and Remus, the story of two manly men, brothers, who end up as enemies, but not really. In the US, this film was entitled Duel Of The Titans. It stars Mr. Steve Reeves and Mr. Gordon Scott as the titular titans and they are quite handsome and beefy. I do love these sword and sandal films out of Italy (called peplums there), and I wrote about the experience of seeing Hercules in, I think, Kritzerland. The film was pretty slow going but still enjoyable and I always get a kick out of the dubbing. I wonder if anyone has any concrete information about who dubbed Mr. Reeves. I have an idea who it is, but I’ve been unable to find any information on his dubbers on the Internet. The transfer on this German DVD is anamorphic scope – it’s not a great transfer, with iffy color (although some reels look better than others), but it is the full Eyetalian version rather than the twelve minute shorter American version.

Well, why don’t we all click on the Unseemly Button whilst we all start reading The Curious Case Of The Mincing Tuna.

Today I’m not sure what is happening. The late afternoon meeting that was supposed to happen is now happening on Thursday. So, I may do some writing today, and I also have to finish recording the songs from The Hostage. Other than that, I’ll catch up on other things, do some errands and, of course, jog, and be a good boy, diet-wise.

Tomorrow I have a meeting in the morning or late morning, and a bunch of errands and telephonic calls. Then on Thursday, I have the final work session with Grant, and this late afternoon meeting.

Well, dear readers, I must take the day, I must do the things I do, I must, for example, write, record songs, jog, and eat a reasonably reasonable meal. Today’s topic of discussion: What are your favorite cold pasta dishes – where have you had them, which do you make, and feel free to share your recipes. Let’s have loads of lovely postings, shall we? And now I must get back to that page-turner, The Curious Case Of The Mincing Tuna.

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