Ok, I told Rita I would write something about her yesterday and now it’s today. But better late than never.
Mostly yesterday I tried to find a photo of her from High School, because a photo is worth a thousand words. Ok, maybe a couple of hundred.
But I couldn’t find a photo so I’ll have to use some words, unlike Rita, who now seems extraordinarily fond of FB stickers. Especially the kind that move.
Rita wasn’t in theater and like anyone who wasn’t, my memories of them are a little vague. I do remember she was big and by that I mean larger than life.
She had, and still has a great smile and I remember her being more mature-looking than the rest of us. She kinda reminded me of Sophia Loren and I sorta pegged her at 25, while the rest of us were about 14-15. She had big blondish-reddish hair and a big laugh. She seemed a little exotic. And the word that keeps coming to mind is fast. There were a couple of girls in the class ahead of mine that also seemed that way, but I never really paid much attention to anyone who wasn’t in theater, so I could be wrong about all of them. But I don’t think so.
I’ve learned a lot about Rita through FB in the past years. Perhaps more than was necessary. She claims to be an extraordinary cook of all ethnic cuisines, due to some kind of weird relationships with the ethnicity involved. As illustrated in the Great Meatball Debate on FB, December 2016:
Hey missy! My Italian Meatballs were trained by only the very best right out of Sicily! I defy you to tell my mother in law her Meatballs suck! Since she absolutely swears I improved upon their texture and flavor!
December 7, 2016 at 5:54am
(If I know anything about Sicilian Mothers, and I do because I have one, they lie to your face and laugh behind your back.)
If you doubt my Italian culinary talents…you should ask Francesca & Paul Nixon! Try my baked ziti! Homemade sauces, etc! I have many witnesses!
December 7, 2016 at 5:40am
(I’m pretty sure Francesca is Polish and Paul is Irish, so I don’t know what qualifies them to judge Italian cooking, even if she changed her name from Fran to Francesca, but oh well.)
I make the VERY BEST STUFFED CABBAGE & without the Cabbage stinking up the place! A very special restaurateurs trick! And my mother in law is Sicilian! And I was only common law married to her son! Thank G-d for that! She rolled her eyes at him for bring a f*cking male puttana, more than anything besides smacking him repeatedly for hitting me! But my Meatballs were not from a recipe written down. And still isn’t! She’d curse me if I ever did that! I’d already been cursed with her son! I didn’t need anymore help in the cursing department! Her recipe & that of her ex druggie daughter in law were two differing styles which I simply took more flavour from one, added more pork from the other which btw…I freshly ground myself! And a few other switches from each one, to arrive at something even Mario Battali would have praised & raised up the Italian flag for…then given my ex, the Italian Salute and we would have shared a whole lot of Chianti until we were all very happily schnockered! And you really should try my latke recipe. And my Meatballs, Stuffed Cabbage, CHILI con CARNE, etc., etc., etc. My Asian cuisine is spot in as I inherited a whole Chinese Restaurants knowledge database from my friend…may she RIP. She was the owner of a highly successful Chines Restaurant. Again! I have witnesses! You’d also like my special baked/broiled salmon. I’d better go change my Depends now…grab my hearing aid & my spectacles just fell off my nose again! Gosh dang it!
December 7, 2016 at 7:09am
(This whole response just confused me and I’m sure also Mario Batali, if he happened to read it, which, since we’re not FB friends, I’m sure he didn’t.)
I just gotta say if your common-law-mother-in-law was really a Sicilian, you’d be dead and buried somewhere in New Jersey & we wouldn’t be having this conversation. And bragging about Corned Beef & Cabbage just proves it.
December 7, 2016 at 7:13am
And that was the end of the discussion, almost.
I have a friend who has several successful French restaurants but my Coq Au Vin is always inedible. Especially if I try to make it in a crockpot. So I really don’t understand how being in close proximity to someone who can cook a particular ethnic food, can give you the expertise to cook that food.
But that’s Rita. She still seems as big and as larger-than-life as she ever did. And funny. She’s very, very funny. I’m a little sad I didn’t get to know her better in High School, but happy that I’ve found her friendship now.
I’m 100% Italiano!
Non posso credere a tutti che hai appena detto a Robin, sono isterica che ride! Lmfao! Puttanesca! Puttana!
Vedo che non mettete latte nel tuo polpette che faccio con la mia e ho imparato da una signora molto di italiano antico della porta accanto a me! Buona notte Susie ti amo!
(I have Google Translate on my computer, too, Rita.)
December 6, 2016 at 10:18pm
Oh yeah! And I’m Swedish too! Want me to speak in Swedish?😜
December 6, 2016 at 10:22pm
I guess math wasn’t Rita’s best subject, but you always need friends who make you laugh, and if Rita wants to be all ethnicities at different times, that’s ok with me. The world needs more big, larger-than-life, funny and colorful people like Rita.