This morning I'm suffering from a serious case of creative constipation, and so I'll just pass on a few things for your enlightenment, edification, and amusement. And to fill up the space.
Mergers are a big thing nowadays as companies in trouble try to join up with other companies in trouble to produce new, larger companies in trouble. I thought this editorial cartoon about the proposed merger of Chrysler and GM was pretty accurate:
One of my co-workers, taking pity on me for my serious lack of understanding of economics and high finance, recently provided me with this handy glossary which explains some of the terms commonly used in reporting on the current economic crisis. You, too, may find it useful...
CEO - Chief Embezzlement Officer.
CFO - Corporate Fraud Officer.
BULL MARKET - A random market movement causing an investor to mistake himself for a financial genius.
BEAR MARKET - A 6-18 month period when the kids get no allowance, the wife gets no jewelry, and the husband gets no love.
VALUE INVESTING - The art of buying low and selling lower.
P/E RATIO - The percentage of investors wetting their pants as the market keeps crashing.
BROKER - What your financial advisor makes you.
STANDARD & POOR - Your life in a nutshell.
STOCK ANALYST - Idiot who just downgraded your stock.
STOCK SPLIT - When your ex-wife and her lawyer split your assets equally between themselves.
FINANCIAL PLANNER - A guy whose phone has been disconnected.
MARKET CORRECTION - A downward trend beginning the day after you buy stocks.
CASH FLOW - The movement your money makes as it disappears down the toilet.
YAHOO - What you yell after selling your junk stock to some poor sucker for $240 per share.
WINDOWS - What you jump out of when you're the sucker who bought someone's junk stock at $240 per share.
INSTITUTIONAL INVESTOR - Former investor who's now locked up in a nuthouse.
PROFIT - An archaic word no longer in use.
Now that autumn is here, it's the season for squash, which is one of my favorite vegetables, and apple cider, which is one of my favorite drinks. Squash is delicious, versatile, and not especially expensive (especially if you can buy it at a farmers' market); apple cider is great either cold or hot with cinnamon and other spices. Last night I made this wonderful soup which uses both squash and apple cider. It's a little bit of work, but it's really worth it.
Butternut Squash Soup with Cider Cream
5 tbsps butter
2½ lbs butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into ½-inch pieces (about 6 cups)
2 cups chopped leeks (white & pale green parts only)
½ cup chopped peeled carrot
½ cup chopped celery
2 small Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and chopped
1½ tsps dried thyme
½ tsp dried sage leaves, crumbled
5 cups chicken broth
1½ cups apple cider
2/3 cup sour cream
½ cup whipping cream
Chopped fresh chives
1. Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add squash, leeks, carrot, and celery; sauté until slightly softened, about 15 minutes. Mix in apples, thyme, and sage. Add broth and 1 cup cider and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until apples are tender, stirring occasionally, about 30 minutes. Cool slightly.
2. Working in batches, puree the soup in a blender. Return soup to pan. Boil remaining ½ cup cider in a small, heavy saucepan until reduced to ¼ cup, about 5 minutes. Cool. Place sour cream in a small bowl and whisk in the reduced cider.
3. Bring the soup to a simmer. Mix in the whipping cream. Ladle the soup into bowls, drizzle with the cider cream, and garnish with chives. Serves 10, and they'll worship you.
That's all for now. Tomorrow I hope to be more awake and creative. Pigs may fly, too. But I'll do my best.
Have a good day. More thoughts tomorrow.