Wednesday, January 25, 2012

gay 90's, funeral potatoes & sundance

beth snow andersen whitaker evans
there are many things to say today, but i will try to limit them to three.

first, and definitely most important, is celebrating my transcendent grandmother, beth snow andersen whitaker evans, who is 90 years old today.


it's hard to know where to begin with her, but i think i'll just tell one little story that's relevant to this blog.  i'll try not to cry while i write it, and you try not to cry when you read it.

when grandma was five, her mother died of sepsis after giving birth to her eigth child in emory, utah.  she was sent to live with relatives in st. george, and the money for her care was kept in a tea cup on top of the ice box.  grandma recalls the lady of the house taking down the tea cup and pursing her lips in displeasure whenever she had to take money from the (what my grandma believed) too small allowance.

when spring came, which is hot in st. george, grandma was still wearing her long woolen stockings.  how she longed for white cotton anklets like the other girls wore to school.  so she asked the lady of the house if she could have some.  the lady replied, "your other mother can buy them for you when you return to emory in the summer." (grandma's father had just remarried.)

so grandma had to keep wearing the long stockings for the duration of the school year.  she reports that when she returned to emory, her greeting to her new step-mother was, "can i have some anklets?"  her step-mother said, "of course."
gramdma beth at the homestead

and it seems that things took a happier turn in this tragic year from that moment on.  but it's clear that grandma has held this incident close, and she makes it her practice to "never say no."  this might mean that when my children ask grandma for a sleepover, she'll say, "why, yes, we will have to work on scheduling that sometime."  and that might mean next friday, or it could mean that grandma is thinking,  in parentheses, that she will hold said sleepover some day after she has been resurrected from the grave and feels up to it again.  either way, her ability to make a child feel loved, accepted, and attended to is legendary.

i love and respect this lady more than i can possibly say.

and p.s.--she used to draw lines up the backs of her fantastic legs during the war when stockings were scarce.

secondly, i went to sundance last night with a friend who had a press pass and therefore invites to the exclusive parties.  i did my darndest to network, hand out cards, talk up my script, etc.  but i'm so gosh darn bad at it.  it felt hideous the whole time.  is there such thing as a person i could hire to be me and pimp my work for me?

me and lorri at bing bar--me trying to act natural
if schmoozing around a bunch of other schmoozers is  what it takes to get your work out there, i'll surely just moulder in my stocking drawer for the rest of my days.

i heard great things about another earth and the turkish film (the first one ever at sundance) can,  and one friend raved about west of memphis.  i'm trying to get in to see the artist is present about marina abramovic tomorrow night, then i'll be seeing five broken cameras on friday.  i have best of fest tickets for a week from monday (free for locals!)

alas, no celeb sightings.

favorite provo restaurant
the ny times featured an article yesterday on mormon cuisine, mentioning my favorite provo restaurant, communal, and the fact that a lot of mormons have retained "basic homemaking skills"  that much of the country has lost.  this is something i love about my culture.  we still have a strong, some might say religious even, pull to the dinner table.

i'm all about that.
here is the "updated funeral potato" recipe from the nyt and an old post on funeral potatoes from my old blog.

legwear:  today it's frigid and i'm wearing grey jeans.  don't forget to enter in our tights giveaway.  we selected some beautiful, warm and pretty fancy tights for some lucky legs out there.

inspiration:  never say no.

looking forward:  to more sundance.


  1. Replies
    1. I agree with the above! I also love how relevant is to the ethos of our blog: tights in tight places. My grandma's mom also died giving birth to her eighth child in rural Utah. The baby died, too. (And then not even a year later, my grandma's dad died in the Spanish flu epidemic.)

      I also have to say, I'm very impressed that you even ATTEMPTED to network, especially in that setting. I would love to hear more about this at some point.

  2. Hi Lara!

    Wow, that article in the NYT is crazy! Funny because i just wrote a piece about cooking in Provo at BYU, and the fact that we were all taught how to cook, etc...check it OUT!

    I love the new blog! Good work, girls! With your mad skillz, you will always be able to get yourself out of a tight place!

    Miss you!


    1. shannon, i love your new project to, and will click over there right now to see the byu story. miss you and your mad skillz, too, and never, ever will forget eating berries avec cream and salmon hash with you and san francisco. xo