Notes from the Kitchen

San Francisco Celebrates 2012 World Series Winners

In a neighborhood market, a giant flat screen TV played play-off games and then world series games for local shoppers to keep tabs on their hometown team. During a recent shopping trip, the checker invited me to sit down and watch an inning. So I did. She proceeded to explain that she didn’t understand baseball but wanted to.

Down the street, one bar after another was packed wall to wall with people clad in orange and black. And even in a bookstore known for its quiet atmosphere, the pallor was ghostly as the usually packed aisles were empty and the dulcet tones of Johnny Miller called plays overhead.

Don’t get me started about the neighborhood restaurant that rented speakers to boom games against the Reds out onto the sidewalk. I stood there, along with US Postal workers taking their breaks watching the close game and gritting their teeth. We wandered further inside and clung to the back wall with a fray of others not imbibing or eating, just watching the torture unfold. And then, just like that, the Giants won. Strangers exchanged high fives and hollers.

One particular afternoon, happy that two of my favorite clothing colors include burnt orange and black, I yelled into the opening mouths of buses at their bus stops, “Let’s go Giants” to the bus drivers. They would honk the horn, shoot the peace signal or hit the air with a fist bump.

And this, friends, is what made this year’s World Series and play-offs all the more exquisite. The game brought people together under a shared cause and regardless of socioeconomic circumstances or even knowledge of the game (Panda who?), San Francisco rallied behind a team where each player played a role and no one person swept the series.

Whether it was Hunter Pence with his inspirational pre-game talks and homers or Pablo Sandoval scoring multiple runs in a single game, we cheered on our team. Tweets built the enthusiasm coining “MVPosey”, sharing Vogelsong’s story, seeing Zito come alive, Timmy make it happen or touting Romo’s latest strike-outs. And what about Pagan, Scutaro, Theriot, Baby Giraffe or Wolverine? Each player worked hard and kept going until the jubilant end. And former closer, Brian Wilson? While confined to the dugout due to an injury, well, he played piano on the other players’ caps.

Everyone shared this victory. Their teamwork paid off.

Tonight, fireworks, throngs of people and even the absurdity of trash can fires demonstrated the kinetic energy of a city so excited at a team of misfits bringing the magic to the forefront of a series where the underdog prevailed. Together, we are Giant.

And with that, I thought it might be nice to recount recipes inspired by fandom or photos from our last world series win two years ago. So enjoy, preferably with a glass of bubbly.

Inspired by the San Francisco Giants

DESSERT RECIPES- Orange & Black Cookies

Orange & Black Cookies


Dark Rye Grilled Cheese Sandwiches with Rubbed Garlic

World Series Parade 2010

(Or when I devolved into a schoolgirl squealing at seeing former Journey frontman Steve Perry).

Click here for full story and 2010 parade recap.

Bruce Bochy

Pablo Sandoval

tim-lincecum-2010-world-series-paradeTim Lincecum

brian-wilson-2010-world-series-paradeBrian Wilson

And finally, what would that 2010 World Series parade have been without Steve Perry?




One year ago – a blogaversary

crowd waiting

One year ago, things looked a bit different.

After we said I do, we watched the San Francisco Giants clinch the title of World Series champs. Put differently, on a certain honeymoon and in a certain seaside town, there was a bar, multiple visits and bellowing at Phillies play-off games over foamy mugs of Sam Adams’ Oktoberfest. Before there was a Beck in my life, I thought I understood baseball. I even thought of myself as a baseball fan.

One year ago, la vie en route came back to life.

Everyone loves a fresh start. While la vie en route really started in 2006, it made sense last year to finagle it into something that culled my passions for food, poetry, art and travel into one place. It made sense to begin again.

williemays_world series parade

And this brings me back to that band of misfits who made magic.

bruce bochy 2010 world series parade

For a week before the Giants won, I wore orange and black like a badge of honor. It’s a good thing my closet is full of Austin orange and New York black. I baked a batch of Orange & Blacks – my West Coast homage to cakey East Coast Black & Whites.

orange & black cookies

The day of the big celebratory parade I checked out early for lunch and sidled my way into the throngs of people skirting the sidewalk curbs. Two kind women let me inch my way onto the square of street space in front of them. They grumbled as people who have been holding a place for hours might and I took it upon myself to try and make them smile for their courtesy and shrink myself so as not to block their incredible view.

pablo sandoval 2010 world series parade

We waited. We waited some more. Eventually around the corner came vehicles of the big-wigs including Coach Bruce Bochy.

tim lincecum 2010 world series parade

I cheered along with the people around me as the cable cars began slowly climbing forward in the ferreting the Giants players down the street.

brian wilson 2010 world series parade

But before we saw the likes of Pablo Sandoval, the Panda, before we watched Brian Wilson clad in his silver high tops leave the confines of his cable car and before Tim Lincecum casually waved from the enclosed cover of his, I saw someone who made me scream like a schoolgirl.

Out of this crowd anxiously scouring the line of cable cars waiting to parade up the street and out of the quietude of fans waiting to see and wave at their favorite player, I saw a shock of shoulder length black hair and began hearing the wail of electric guitars in my head.

steve perry 2010 world series parade

Steve Perry!!!!”

Steve Perry turned and looked straight at me as people to my left and right looked at me, a pre-teen squealing and hearing backup vocals to bear me up, a woman grown and waving her freak flag high. As he smiled and gave me a thumbs up, I yelled, “Don’t stop believing!!!”

In the throes of World Series mayhem, I left on cloud nine.

If you have read this blog over the past year, you’ve brought some joy to my life. You’ve followed the bitter and the sweet intersecting and maybe tried your hand at a recipe or two. Perhaps you’ve found a poem I’ve posted that speaks to you or been taken for a ride in travels shared. I want to give some joy back to you as you live your life en route.

Three books. Three winners.

In support of my favorite local and independent bookstore, two of the books are already well loved and one is brand new. Represented are food, poetry and art because that’s how I roll en route. So here’s where it gets fun. Leave a comment and pick one: “food, poetry or art” in your response.

Then we play ball.