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  • Writer's pictureMiriam Green

It's a Small World After All

Asian Eggplant_edited.jpg

Imagine how small the world is when you can’t even remember what you did an hour ago.

News is irrelevant. Other countries don’t exist. Your city is defined by the few short blocks you walk in an endless loop of discovery.

When I’m with Mom, my world shrinks, too.

“I wish I could remember. I can’t remember anything.” Mom is aware of her limitations; and helpless to change them.

“I hate when that happens,” I say, echoing Billy Crystal’s line.

Mom might not get the reference, but she knows I’m making fun of her. She laughs.

It’s a good thing we love to laugh. If life weren’t so much fun, dealing with Alzheimer’s would be devastatingly depressing.

We stop by the beauty parlor to make an appointment for a pedicure. When she talks to her handsome French hairdresser, she breaks into song.

I feel pretty

I feel pretty

I feel pretty and witty and gay....

Mom once told me that when she was on a date in her 20s, she was so happy, she swung around a lamppost and started singing in the middle of the street. Just like in the movies. The boy never called her again.

Now, that’s all we do. We live in the now. Any excuse for a song.

We're a couple of swells We live at the best hotels But we prefer the country far away from the city smells We're a couple of sports The pride of the tennis courts In June, July and August we look cute when we're dressed in shorts The Vanderbilts have asked us up for tea We don't know how to get there, no siree We would drive up the Avenue, but we haven't got the price We would skate up the Avenue, but there isn't any ice We would ride on a bicycle, but we haven't got a bike So we'll walk up the Avenue Yes, we'll walk up the Avenue And to walk up the Avenue's what we like.

As an added incentive to be here now, try this Asian ratatouille-type dish. It will jump-start your taste buds. Or, as my grandmother might say, it’ll give you a good kick in the tuchus. That’s Yiddish for buttocks.

Spicy Asian Eggplant

This is not a sweet dish. You can tone it down by using less red pepper flakes. Or, if you want to make it sweet, add a little sugar. Start with a teaspoon, and go from there.

1 medium eggplant peeled and cubed

2 small zucchini chopped

1 red pepper chopped

1 onion chopped

1 Tbsp sesame oil

1 Tbsp canola oil

3 cloves garlic minced

1 tsp red pepper flakes

2 Tbsp soy sauce

2 Tbsp rice vinegar

¼ cup water

½ Tbsp sugar (optional)

2-3 tsp sesame seeds


Sauté minced garlic and onion in oil until onions become translucent. Add eggplant and stir to coat in oil. Cook for 5 minutes. Add soy sauce, vinegar and water, and remaining vegetables. Stir and bring to a boil. Add red pepper flakes and sesame seeds, then simmer on a low flame for about 20 minutes or until all vegetables are cooked through.

Thanks, Robert and Sarah for letting me use your wireless to load this blog.

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