The Hunter/Gather of Surburbia

Are we where we live?

November 17, 2013


I am not a foodie, but I do enjoy food. But since moving to Hermiston in 2011 I have discovered a dearth of local restaurants to spend my whopping teacher's salary on. There is no Italian, no truly good steakhouse, no fish place.
I have yet to try The Bistro at Bellinger's, but those I trust have said it is a good place to eat. The restaurant a block from my apartment is also rumored to have good burgers. But that is it. Jonesing for some fast food, you have the standards Taco Bell, McDonald's, etc. No KFC, if you want some good chicken you have to go to the Midway Tavern, so don't bring the kids.
Hale's was promoted to me as the best place for a burger. The burgers are ok, but the environment is dark, dingy and dirty. They also take no pride in the prep of their food. I got avocado quarters on my burger that I had to cut so I could actually take a bite of my burger. Their salads are huge, but they don't slice onions, peppers, or hard boiled eggs into slices you can put in your mouth. I have a big mouth that seems to expand when I am eating good food, but not enough when eating at Hale's.
Unfortunately, the restaurant had a huge fire a few months and I'm not sure they have reopened. I hope if they have they have changed how they prep their food.
To get good fresh produce I have to drive 25 miles and to another state to Yokes Fresh Market. I love fresh veg and fruit, but here in Hermiston my choices are limited to Safeway, Walmart, and Fiesta Foods. Actually, Fiesta has fairly good produce. Safeway can't be relied on to have a good selection or a selection of fresh produce period. Walmart despite its promotion on Masterchef has the worst produce within 25 miles. I have on more than on occasion rolled the dice and bought produce at Walmart and every time I have had at least part of my purchase turn up moldy or old by the next day.
I am a lover of coffee and love grinding my coffee at the store, but both Safeway and Walmart have gotten rid of their grinders. Have I missed something? So now I have to buy ground coffee. What have I missed has there been some change? Sigh.
I discovered Bob's Burgers and Brews in Kennewick and they have great burgers and a great selection of brew. Olive Garden, Red Lobster, and IHop are also in Kennewick, but not in Hermiston or Pendleton. I have also discovered Prodigal Son in Pendleton, great burgers and some wonderful brew.
As I explore further afield I hope to find some other good places to eat. Prodigal Son is on the list to take my family when they visit.

November 16, 2013

Bullying Hoopla

Read a blog yesterday by Stephanie Metz who basically calls any child who is bullied and feels bad enough to do harm to  themselves a pussy. Ok, she doesn't use that particular word, but she is saying nearly that in a rambling nearly incomprehensible post that begins with her son deciding he shouldn't bring an action figure to show and tell because the drill it held looked like a gun. My own children are older than she is and when they were in school they couldn't bring guns for show and tell either. I didn't have a fit about it, I just made sure they didn't bring them to school. What is the big deal?
I'm still not sure how she got from show and tell to bullying. But bullying is of particular interest to me because I teach at an alternative high school and I have had more than one student sent to me because of bullying. Surprised? Oh, did I mention these students were sent to me because they were the victims of bullying? Schools have a difficult time dealing with bullying, especially when the bully is involved in sports.The victim stops coming to school to avoid the bullying and the athlete goes on to play sports.
We are not raising a population of wimps because we, as parents, come to the defense of our children when they need us to. My children never asked me to intervene preferring, I guess, to battle for themselves. Neither got suspended for fighting, but that is a good point brought up, not by Metz, but by someone responding to her post. The problem with not dealing out consequences to both parties in a fight is that if one gets off because of defending himself against a bully, then just about every fight from there on out will involve someone being bullied whether that is the case or not. So both get suspended, usually if the administration digs down, one less of a suspension than the other if bullying is involved. But the problem remains and bullying happens on a daily basis to some extent in every school.
Grit, tenacity, strength of character all must play a part in our children's education at home and in school. But our children must be able to feel comfortable going to someone for help and if they are witnesses to bullying feel safe in giving help.