Today in My History

2000: Baring My Sole
Flotsam, Jetsam, Detritus and Stuff
On My Way to Nowhere
She Who Must Be Obeyed
Wouldn't You Know...?
24:   Season
2009:  Oi, Pedro!  
2010:  Ten from my Bucket List
2011:  Team Laura
2012: If It's Tuesday...
2013: Absent Friends
2014: Never Too Late
2015: Sunday Stealing

2016:  Sweat of our Brow
2017: The First One is the Hardest
2018  I Guess She Can Die Now
2019: Saturday 9

Theater Reviews
Updated 3/10

Books Read in 2020
 Updated 3/30
"An Echo in the Bone"

Personal Home Page

My family

Books Read in 2020
Books Read in 2019
Books Read in 2018

Books Read in 2017
Books Read in 2016
Books Read in 2015
Books Read in 2014
Books Read in 2013

Books Read in 2012
Books Read in 2011
Books Read in 2010

Cast (updated 7/16)

(you know how to fix it)

Some Background Links:
The Philosophy of Juice & Crackers
The story of Delicate Pooh
The story of the Piñata Group
Pumpkin pies
Who IS this Gilbert person anyway?

mail to Walt / mail to Bev  


20 July 2020

It must have been fun to be Huell Howser, who died in 2013 at 67. 

Howser was best known as the host of California's Gold, 18 seasons (443 episodes) which focused on people, places and things unique to California.  I believe most of his shows are available on YouTube.  I recently watched the hour that was dedicated to See's candy.

Originally from Tennessee, he moved to California in 1981 and fell in love with the state.  He had an enthusiasm for everything California.  His obituary talked about the magic of Howser’s style: a folksy, self-deprecating manner that sharply contrasted with the typically polished-but-distant demeanor of most TV reporters. He approached even the most innocuous sites with a sense of wonder and discovery, which made him a frequent target of parody but also made him one of the area’s best-liked TV figures. His earnest but humorous style – aided by the still audible Tennessee accent – let him get away with things no one else could.

"I want our stories to reveal the wonders of the human spirit and the richness of life in California, including its history, people, culture and natural wonders." he is quoted as saying.

I took a look at the Howser archive to get a sense of the diversity of the subjects he covered.  A few of the more oddball are:  a belly dancing festival, warthogs, a soda pop store, ukelele strummers, the blind and dyslexic library, the site of the first hot dog on a stick stand, ice skaters Frick and Frack, a chicharrones facility, climbing Half Dome, etc., etc., etc.  He found everything in the state interesting.

Last night we learned about pig ears.  When Howser's bartender at Musso & Frank restaurant in Hollywood told him how much he liked to eat pig ears as a child….Huell dove right in and learned a lot more than he expected about different cultures and this culinary treat.

He started the show in a pet store, where pig ears are sold as a treat for dogs.

Then he went to a place where he learned about picked pigs ears, 11 lbs each packed in jars with carrots, chilis and onions. 

Then he went to an Hispanic restaurant where he tasted ears cooked the way his bartender remembered,

The ear (boiled "for a long time" first), dipped in flour, then an egg mix, and then fried.

After he decided that he liked the fried pig ear (and got others in the restaurant to try it), he then went to an Asian restaurant where the ears are braised and then layered in a machine and finally cut in slices...

the sheets of pig ears are pulled apart and tossed into a bowl with a spicy Sichuan marinade, mixed, chilled and served. The shredded pig ears have a broad bouquet of flavors like the licorice notes from the anise and the saltiness of the soy, but the heat from these chilled ears sit somewhere below a blast from a can of pepper spray and well above a plate of hot wings.

By the end of the hour I'd learned more about pig ears than I ever knew and it makes me look at pigs in a whole new way.

And Huell Howser was absolutely fascinated by it all.



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