Monday, April 02, 2007

Protecting This Great Land Whether You Want Us To Or Not.

What follows is a transcript of a phone call during the wiretapping of the "person of interest" at 9:30 a.m. DST. The POI was identified by Homeland Security as a possible risk after she was overheard making threats against the American automobile industry. The decision was made to tap her phones in order that we might gather more information with regard to this possible plot against person or persons associated with an undisclosed motor company. The speakers are identified as The Sheep (our POI) and one Dreamy Mechanic of the Car Fixy Place Not Associated With Any Automobile Manufacturer.

Sheepish Annie: Hello?

Dreamy Mechanic: Well, hello there, Sheep! Your truck is ready to go anytime you want to pick it up.

SA: Really? That was fast!

DM: You're gonna laugh...

SA: Under the circumstances, that seems unlikely. But why don't give it a shot?

DM: Well, we ran a diagnostic and it appears that the computer failed to reset itself when we did the last round of repairs. It seems you have to drive it at 45-60 mph for ten minutes steadily before it will do that. Who knew? When you passed that truck this morning, you went out of the range and it shut itself off.

SA: So you are telling me that my truck did not like my driving speed and grounded me???

DM: (chuckling) Pretty much.

SA: Shoot it. Shoot it now. Don't stop to question me. Just shoot it.

DM: (still laughing)

Following this conversation, we lost track of The Sheep briefly, but a review of the computer data taken from the Car Fixy Place indicates that she walked back to the garage in the rain and retrieved it at no cost. Satellites later picked her up southbound on the Maine Turnpike. Since we just got a cool new super spying/decoder ring/audio recorder/pannini maker, we opted to test it out and see if we could retrieve further information. As the POI passed the exit to Kennebunk, operatives noted that the vehicle seemed somewhat unstable and to be losing speed at an alarming rate. Given the location and the proximity to the vacation home of a certain important government-type guy who signs off on our paychecks, we opted to engage long range audio capabilities. Three operatives, two of whom have been in combat situations, fled the room in tears following the exposure to the tirade and abusive language that was heard from the vehicle.

It was determined that everyone in command central would benefit from a nice ice cream sandwich so the situation was put on Stand-By status.

12:00 p.m. DST: another call was recorded between The Sheep and the dealership where she purchased the vehicle. There was a brief flurry of interest given that this was what we were all worried about in the first place, but everyone was feeling a little sleepy after the ice cream sandwiches so it was sort of hard to follow the conversation. There was something about needing to be on a field trip tomorrow with a bunch of kids and a lot of begging.

When the first command shift ended, there was some debate as to whether this was worth the taxpayers' dollars. We then all laughed heartily and agreed to resume surveillance tomorrow. The need to continue our vigilance was confirmed when satellite feeds indicated that The Sheep/POI has changed vehicles. She is currently driving a budget model toy car in what appears to be an effort to elude further monitoring by the fine men and women of Homeland Security. Rest assured, this ploy has not fooled us. We have located her original vehicle at the dealership just outside the service center and will place operatives in the general area to assess the meaning of this development.

Plus, we are all sort of getting a kick out of the expression on The Sheep's face as she drives around in her little toy car. It is a cross between "just bit into a lemon" and "having a stroke." Most amusing...

I'm actually rather glad that Big Brother is on the case. With my luck, I may need a ride at some point. Clearly, Sheep were not meant for speeds over 20 miles per hour. Or full-sized vehicles.

I'm tired of talking about it. Let's have a happy moment, shall we? There were a few requests for the hummus recipe and I'm glad to oblige. This is how I make it so I feel pretty comfortable sharing. Once you have a basic recipe, it is easy enough to tweak it to your liking. I actually posted this recipe a while back, but as my tastes change so does my method. Might as well give the one I'm using in the "here and now."

I am a fan of the roasted red pepper variety so that is what I make. If you don't care for that, you can add whatever floats your boat. Roasted garlic is nice, as are chives. I often wonder how chocolate chips might work out, but haven't had the nerve to try it.

Roasted Red Pepper Hummus

1/2 a red pepper, roasted, peeled and seeded*
The juice of 1/2 lemon
1 can chick peas (garbanzo beans) drained and rinsed.
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons tahini paste (you can find this in the natural foods section with the peanut butter)
2 tablespoons water
1 clove garlic (more if you aren't planning a rendezvous with your dreamy mechanic)
pinch of cumin
salt and pepper to taste.

Combine all ingredients and blend using a food processor or blender until creamy. Add more water or oil as needed to reach desired consistency.

Break out the crackers, flatbread, pretzels or other dipping-type foods and enjoy.

*I roast the pepper by baking it in the oven until the skin is blistered and slightly blackened. I let it cool slightly then remove the skin. The sugars will have concentrated and it will have a nice, sweet taste to it. Some people use the broiler but I am afraid of my broiler so that won't work. If you have a gas oven or access to open flame, I hear this works quite nicely, too. But, I've never tried that. Sheep don't do well with fire...

Of course, you can adjust any of this to suit your own taste. My teaching assistant makes his with turmeric and says it is divine. Well, he doesn't actually say, "divine" but I'm pretty sure that is what he means. He eats it every day, so it has to be pretty good. However you make it, it is really quite simple and you will have half of the lemon and pepper left over for the next batch.

And now I must go indulge in some of my own hummus stash. It has been, shall we say, a "challenging' day.



--Deb said...

Is it wrong that I'm laughing at your misfortune??

trek said...

I was amused until you mentioned chick peas. My mother tried to get me to eat them as part of linguine with white sauce (a.k.a. olive oil/garlic/chick peas).

I'd rather eat library paste.

Anonymous said...

I'm telling you, that mechanic should just ask you out instead of rigging the truck so you'll have to keep coming back! At this rate he's going to quickly become the nightmare mechanic instead of the dreamy mechanic. At least they gave you a toy car to use this time :-)

brenda said...

It is NO FUN being stuck on the side of the Maine Turnpike on a cold, rainy day (I know because it's happened to me before). Sorry you had such a crappy day.

Mel said...

My first thought was, "Oh Good Lord, tell me they didn't actually hear HM talking. That would really have put them on high alert."

I love the roasted red peppers, but they don't agree with David and have been essentially banned. Oh well.

Sheila said...

Unbelievable! Enough said.
The homemade hummus sounds so good....we eat the store-bought stuff. Thanks for the recipe.

catsmum said...

Oh-kay then!
No witty retorts springing to mind today so just "Hi... I cruised by as usual. Hope tomorrow's better '
oh yeah ... hurry up and ask that mechanic out before we have to do some sort of intervention on you.

Mia said...

Maybe you should just invite Mr. McDreamy over for some hummus? Just sayin *grin*

I bought all the stuff to make the hummus yesterday, but no tahini. Who knew? I'm on a mission to find it today though...

Hang in there Sheepie.

laurie in maine said...

Laughing...(sorry, though)...and yeah. Licking school glue off my fingers rather than your mixing bowl!

Anonymous said...

Do they have an equally handsome mechanic at the dealership? While you're there check out the salesmen. You may need to find a cute one if things aren't going so well with the mechanic.

SheepsPyjamas said...

Too funny -- I wish I had your sense of humor when things went wrong in my life...
Oh, and thanks for the hummus recipe -- we'll be adventuring past storebought now as well...

Cursing Mama said...

Wouldn't you think a dealership would come up with a better loaner car - I have never in my life driven a loaner & thought about upgrading from my bucket-o-bolts. Proves how dense they are.

Hope the field trip is less exciting.

B. said...

I think it was rather "convenient" your car broke down. Or perhaps it was more "convenient" that Dreamy didn't let you in on that little driving secret to reset the computer. Hmmm...girl, you gots ta put your "milkshake" in gear and get him out on a date!!! :D

knitseashore said...

It *must* be the full moon over Maine. You have had quite a week! I hope your spring break gets here soon, or we're going to find the sheep on a rampage...

I hope the others are right and this is just a ploy by Dreamy Mechanic to ask you out! Men are strange sometimes. :)

Cursing Mama said...

annie -
I saw this the other day and thought immediately of you - (and Crazy Aunt Purl)

Thank goodness this perp has been caught - I would fear for your safety ;)