Monday, October 19, 2009

I'm Your Huckleberry

That's What We Will End Up With, After, Of Course, The Usual Long, Strange, Trip

Jesse put out a call to those of us who are supposed to be writing and posting here. We need new posts to increase traffic, to help raise some money for Maggie's recovery. I am a subscriber to her cause, I also kicked in some extra. I encourage you all to please do the same. Every little bit helps right now.

It made me feel inadequate and ashamed. I've been very slack, no, fuck that, I've been wrapped up in my own shit and more than neglectful. For that, I apologize.

I've partly been hellish busy. I've spent since the middle of September on tour. No, I won't post about that. I intend to work beyond this tour and there are folks that would hesitate to hire me if they thought that I'd be writing about what goes on.

I also hit a rough patch in August. Things were actually going great. I was getting ready to tour with somebody I not only make beautiful music with, it's somebody I adore as a person.

To sweeten the whole deal I got a call from the folks at Line6 who said "Dude, we're coming out with a new, hotter model of Variax, we'd like to send you one to try out and tell us what you think."

Even with all that good stuff happening, even with many of my money problems easing, I was in a funk. Nothing could hold my attention, or my interest. One of the things folks in music industry really admire about me is my intensity and my deep preparation. I found myself having to fight for the will and the energy to practice.

That's when I know that it isn't events or situations around me in play. It's depression. I got my ass in to see the doctor and with his help I've been able to claw my way back into a mood that is more closely tied with the events around me.

My girlfriend of long standing and I have known each other for the length of my sobriety. AA is where we met. We had known each other for a while before we ever datried dating or anything like that. One of the first "dates" we had was to go see the movie "Tombstone."

There's a great line in that movie where Val Kilmer, playing Doc Holliday, answers a challenge for a gunfight by saying "I'm your huckleberry."

Since then, all April and I have had to do to reduce ourselves to giggles and trigger the gag reflex in our friends is say that to each other.


April: Honeyman, would you like to fix me dinner?

Me: I'm your huckleberry.

(cue giggles and gagging)

This pie could be made with huckleberries, but since they are widely available I've substituted blueberries.

Ingredients (for two pies)

Pie filling:

6 lbs blueberries

1 1/3 cup white sugar

grated lemon peel and juice from one lemon

2/3 cup all purpose flour

**2 tablespoons cornstarch, if needed**

crust for two pie shells

Cinnamon crumb topping:

1 cup packed light brown sugar

2 cups flour

2 tablespoons cinnamon

1 half cup softened unsalted butter

Vanilla Extract (to taste)

In a big bowl, put all the filling ingredients.

Mix gently but completely. Allow to stand and macerate for at least two hours. There will be a lot of juice coming out of the berries. If it is too thin, and looks too liquid, pull out a cup of the liquid and mix in the cornstarch. This will allow your filling to set up nicely during the baking.

Roll out and line two big (9") pie pans with bottom crust. I usually roll this a bit thicker than I normally would for a different pie, that's to accomodate the juicy berries and stand up well to the filling.

Put all the topping ingredients in another bowl and squish up by hand. You can add in more butter or more flour and brown sugar as needed. You want a soft topping that will crumble easily into chunks about the size of peas.

Fill the shells with blueberry goop. Sprinkle the topping over that.

Place in a cold oven, making sure to have baking sheets under the pies to catch any drippings.

Set temperature at 375°, bake for 50 minutes.

Cool, and serve. This is great with ice cream, whipped cream, or plain.

For a thoroughly decadent and downright sinfull breakfast, heat a slice of pie in a bowl, douse with cold milk, 1/2 & 1/2, or give in to the indulgence completely and hit it with cream.

We wrap our tour up this weekend. I promise to write more. Really.

One of the highlights of this gig was that I played and epic practical joke on my dear friend and employer. I will write that one out.

Get Better Soon Maggie!