A De-horning Device

My little first of the month errands started early today, and by the time the hour of ten rolled around, I found myself a little lacking in something to keep me busied until the meeting our group of Realtors was having at 11:30 a.m., which consisted of a long over-due “in person” meeting, as well as with a luncheon sponsored by First Citizens Bank, and then followed by a benefit auction.

While I was digging in a cardboard box yesterday, I discovered a large stove-top coffee percolator. Oh how the memories of visits to my great-aunt’s country home came rushing back when I got a good look at it. I was actually beginning to smell her coffee cooking.

Truth be told, she was so old-fashioned even for her time, to where she continued to use her wood-burning kitchen cookstove. Remembering how good her coffee tasted, I decided to spend a little time searching for the method of cooking coffee the old-fashioned way. To my surprise, there were a number of articles written about them, and even step-by-step instructions on how to make it. The only thing I didn’t know about it, was the cooking time, which ranges between seven and ten minutes once you see it beginning to show the water percolating in the glass dome. I also didn’t realize, which made sense, the fact that the darker the coffee appears in the dome, the stronger the taste will be, but there was a caution about cooking it too long because it would taste bitter.

The one I have, has a maximum 14 cups which is quite large, but a person can do a half pot, or even a quarter. I’m sure that percolator was purchased for a large family’s use, or possibly used whenever there were family gatherings, as 14 cups of coffee is quite a bit for maybe two or even three people. When winter arrives, I’ll have to give it a try on a cold morning, just to see if it tastes anything like my great aunt’s. A number of those articles about the stove-top method mentioned it being the best tasting to be had. They also mentioned something about making sure you have fresh ground coffee, or grind your own before sending it to the stove.

Still on the subject of stove-top coffee, I also remember having had such coffee that was made with a freshly cracked egg placed in the basket of ground coffee. I once asked my mother why they did that, and her answer was that they did it whenever they’d have company because it helped to make the coffee taste better. I know I’ve had it with a raw egg in basket, but I can’t remember if it tasted noticeably better. I may have give that a try as well. I can even remember some placing a little salt in the ground coffee before cooking it. So if you have even the slightest curiosity about the taste of stove-top coffee, look for the fashion of one like mine which I have pictured above.

Isn’t it interesting when finding ourselves reaching back for those tried and true methods which have been nearly forgotten? There’ve been times when working with young buyers when mentioning something about some of those old ways of doing things, and them thinking I was a transplant from another century. Some years ago, I’d go to a few auctions, and when seeing some of those old farm tools, many of the young ones wouldn’t have a clue what they were. One of the most memorable, was when I found myself explaining what looked like a long wire cutter, actually being a de-horning device. Can you imagine the pain those young cattle had when having their heads placed in stanchions and getting their horns clipped off. I’m sure we all can think of a few devilish people we’d like to use such a tool on, and as chance would have it, I personally know someone who has one.

My meeting today lasted about two hours, and during that time, I had a nice lunch, listened to speakers, and watched all the donated items being auctioned off. The two pieces I donated, were well received, and ended up bringing more than I thought they would, but I just have to remember, most aren’t used to seeing quality and beauty in the same package, and especially when nearly everything we see in stores, has been copies thousands of times over by the factories in China. I’m of the belief, all the more people will be insisting on having items made in the USA, out of natural materials. Why settle for glued sawdust when you can have real wood, along with real glass instead of plastic? The list goes on.

Since today’s meeting is an annual affair, I’ll have to work at finding a few more things in need of a new home that’ll sell well. I’m sure between now and then, I’ll have a box readied.

I ended up purchasing several gift certificates which I’ll be gifting in the near future, and one of them will certainly be given to a person who went out of his way to do something on a real estate transaction I have in the works. What I found admirable, was his not even complaining about doing it.

Another little chore I had today, was to do a walk-thru on a newly vacated rental belonging to one of my clients. I distinctly remember how presentable it was when they moved into it, and today’s “good look”, was a reminder of how thoughtless and lazy tenants have grown. They didn’t even bother to sweep the floors, let alone clean the stove and refrigerator. I reported my findings back to the owner, so we’ll see if they get any or none of their deposit back. As I’ve said many times, I don’t just blame the young, but even more-so the parents of those adult children. That should be another returning to the old ways where children are given daily duties they have to complete, and that would be that.

Tonight’s One-liner is: A true friend never gets in your way unless you happen to be going down.

Joe Chodur

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