Please, don’t pass the squash.

When watching contestants eat strange animal parts or bugs on the cancelled show Fear Factor, it seldom made me flinch. Bear Grylls boiled a mouse in urine and ate it. I nodded my head and said, “I could do that.”

But hand me a plate of acorn squash with its savory steam rising up to fill my nostrils and I gag.

fear factorWhen I was a kid and my taste buds were all fresh and new, a lot of flavors were too strong for my virginal palette. I’m an adult now. My tongue has gotten around. Years of burning out taste buds by accidentally eating hot peppers, or tasting hot soups and stews still bubbling in the pot, has made them less sensitive. About the only foods I won’t eat is something that tastes spoiled….or squash.

Let’s get something straight. I’ll try anything and have even eaten bugs, some inadvertently, but there’s something about stringy mustard-colored squash that makes my face twist. My tiny olfactory internal muscles attempt to pinch my nose shut and I purse my lips in a tight frown. My shoulders tighten up and my stomach screams, “Please. Don’t do it!”

I’ve tried it with brown sugar, with melted butter and disguised in casseroles, but I just can’t.

Give me a plate of zucchini, crooked neck, turnips, or rutabaga and I’ll lick my plate clean. Patty pan sliced up with fresh herbs and fried in olive oil is delish. Autumn is the time of year when I can’t get enough pumpkin. I bake bundt cakes and pie. You see, I love all of acorn squash’s kissin’ cousins.

pumpkin cake

It’s September which means squash season. They are piled high in grocery bins and farmer’s markets. They are offered as a side dish at farm-to-table restaurants. I should keep trying it until I like it, but even I have limits.

acorn and spaghetti squash

For two decades I’ve bought acorn, butternut and spaghetti squash. They sat in a bowl on my countertop throughout the fall season. When Christmas rolled around, I tossed their hard as rock carcasses out in the compost. This year I’ll do the same.

If I had been a contestant on Fear Factor and a plate of slimy squash had been placed in front of me, I would have attempted to swallow the putrid portion. Heat would have rushed to my spastic face while my stomach screamed. Perspiration would have broken out on my upper lip. Not relying on those tiny internal muscles, I would have pinched my nose tight and swallowed enormous gulps to get it over with. Afterward, while wiping sweat from my brow, I would suck big deep breaths to calm my stomach and keep from retching the nasty vegetable.

But I’m badass like that.

Is there a common food you won’t eat? Do you like squash?

Drop and Hop! A new way to gain followers.

DJ KSmash

Ready to gain new followers? The party starts right now. It will be fast and fun. It’s like speed-dating for blog followers!

DROP a link to your blog in my comments and include a pitch that describes what you write about.

Example:

“Susie Lindau’s Wild Ride” is about my wild Colorado adventures. You’ll find photos, humor and what’s it like to be a Wild Rider who has faced a few challenges. “Bring it on, life!” is my mantra. http://susielindau.com

HOP to other blogs and check them out. Like what you see? Subscribe. Want them to know you came from the Drop and Hop Party? Leave a comment on one of their blog posts or come back here and comment on their pitch.

Blast this link out on Twitter and Facebook or whatever flavor social media you prefer. The more that participate, the more followers you will gain.

The freshest bakery has been flown in from France and the tables are laden with buffet-style brunch. The barista can make anything you like. The bar is always open.

Enjoy!

My son, DJ KSmash, is in the house, so don’t forget to dance!

Free download:

Thanks for stopping by the Wild Ride! I hope you’ll follow my blog.

Click to follow my Wild Tweets here – @susielindau and Susie Lindau’s Wild Ride on Facebook. I post photos on Instagram at Susie_Lindau.

Heads UP! Something New for You.

head's up

So you’re a blogger and your stats are down, your regular commenters seem to be on vacation and your steady stream of followers has dried up to a trickle.

Two reasons why:

  1. We’re all busy. There’s a lot of competition out there.
  2. WP Engineers pulled the “You May Like” from alongside the “Blogs I Follow” in the Reader. This is the first crack down on Spam Following. There may be more to come. Lots of scalawags were abusing the system. Have you seen brand new bloggers with over a thousand likes on one post? I have. They “spam follow” thousands to get tons of views and follow-backs.

So how can I help you? Continue reading

Is it safe to go back in the water?

When I read in the newspaper that Jaws would be shown at a local pool, I had to go. The last time I saw it in its entirety was in a Madison, Wisconsin theater in 1975. When a bloated dead guy floated out of a capsized boat’s window, I kicked the seat ahead of me so hard, I bruised my leg. I didn’t want to take a bath for a week.

The idea of allowing people to swim while watching a film that terrified me forty years ago was too much. This was an adventure I didn’t want to miss.

When we arrived, we staked out our turf across the pool from the big screen. The showing was free so I expected a mob. A surfing music band played poolside to get us in the mood.

photo 2 (5)

There were about as many people in the water as out of the water.

Continue reading

Are You Adventurous? Take the Quiz!

According to Wikipedia, adventure is an exciting or unusual experience. It may also be a bold, usually risky undertaking with an uncertain outcome.

DSCN1731

Although I have a reasonable amount of fear which prevents me from doing anything super crazy and life threatening, I get bored doing the same old thing. I tend to seek out new experiences in almost every aspect of my life.

soap tastes yucky

Soap on a rope tastes yucky, but at least I tried it.

When we were children, we approached new experiences with wonder. My family went on Sunday drives to explore Southern Wisconsin. I have memories of hiking, camping, canoeing and making new friends.

Girl Scout Camp

When was the last time you made a fun weekend plan that didn’t include mundane tasks or a trip to Home Depot? Continue reading

Feel Like Summer is Slipping Away?

Once the 4th of July has been celebrated, the lazy days of summer accelerate at warp speed. Soon, our shadows will stretch, the leaves will begin to change and the kids will head back to school.

I’ve learned how to slow down this special time of year while the days are long and warm. Want to know my secret? Make time for yourself and get outside!

These are a few of the hikes I’ve taken in Colorado this summer.

Fitness challenge hikes

Join the Wild Rider Fitness Challenge. Create some memories while exercising your body and I’ll link you up. Take a couple of pictures while walking, running, biking, swimming, cliff diving, or dancing (the very best exercise), and post a picture or two on Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #WRFChallenge. I’ll include it here on the Wild Ride. Continue reading

Introvert or Extrovert? Maybe You’re an Ambivert.

We all know people who are so shy, we have to pry words out of their mouths. The whole room goes quiet when they begin to speak. We call them introverts. Other people can talk to anyone in any social situation. We label them extroverts.

introverts and extroverts

Introverts and extroverts are polar opposites, so how can we be one or the other? My eyes roll with every debate. Introvert or extrovert? GAH! There’s a gap the size of the Grand Canyon between them. It’s the perfect place for another personality type called, ambiverts. I would guess it comes from the Latin word ambi – both and verts – green. Both green? No. That’s probably not right.

In order to understand this new personality type, we need to review what we know about introverts and extroverts.

Introverts are reflective and happier alone with their thoughts. They energize through being by themselves. They stress out in social situations. If they do go out, they are exhausted afterward.

Continue reading