Summer is close to ending, and autumn will soon be here, a wondrous season of change. Among those movements are the leaving behind of summer activities and the return of the academic school year. The first day of the semester at both schools where I teach, Lehigh University and Muhlenberg College, has arrived. I had a busy summer and taught summer classes, so this is not following on a long break, but I always am excited at the start of a new collegiate year.
I often write, in this blog, about writing, and that is my other passion, but teaching is still my main field, my main vocation, and my driving force in life. I love to teach, and this semester I have a wide variety of courses; among them are the following: First Year Composition, Renaissance Imagination, Gothic and Horror, and Modern American Fiction. These courses reflect some, but certainly not all, of my areas of study and interest.
I always feel blessed that I am able to incorporate my love of reading into a field in which I lead discussions about this material. In fact, I am extraordinarily lucky, because I love my work, and I know there are far too many people who do not have this good fortune.
I also love that I have a wide range of students in my classes. I teach both traditional-age students and non-traditional adult students. As someone who was an adult student myself, a story for another post, I embrace having adults in my classes.
So, onward with the semester!
“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”
“Education is the kindling of a flame, not the filling of a vessel.”
“Education is education. We should learn everything and then choose which path to follow. Education is neither Eastern nor Western, it is human.”
Roosevelt Franklin, the protagonist of my horror novel Maledicus: Investigative Paranormal Society Book I, in many ways is a sophisticated man. He has expensive tastes in British tailored suits, fine cigars, and the best single malt Scotch whisky. He is not, however, a food snob. His beloved wife, Sarah, was an excellent cook and often prepared elegant meals for Roosevelt. Sarah died a few years before the beginning of the book, and Roosevelt honors her memory by not attempting to make those meals for himself. Now, he prefers simpler fare, even if it is not always the healthiest.
(Photo by Liz French)
One of his favorite meals now is panfried veggies and cheeseburgers.
Roosevelt emphasizes that, if possible, to use cast iron pans for the frying.
One pound ground beef, preferably 80/20 mixture.
Cheese–American, cheddar, or Swiss.
Two to three large red potatoes.
One large sweet onion.
One bell pepper.
*Clean and cut potatoes and carrots into irregular small pieces.
*Briefly steam the carrots and potatoes to soften them.
*Dice the bell pepper, tomato, and onion.
*Preheat two cast iron skillets to medium.
*Lightly coat one with olive oil or vegetable oil (this pan is for the veggies.)
*As pans are heating, mix the groundbeef with an egg and Worcestershire sauce. Season mixture with pepper and sea salt.
*Form into patties, as large or small as desired.
*Place patties into heated pan. Allow to sear on both sides.
*Add all veggies into other hot skillet.
*Season with pepper, sea salt, paprika, and dill.
*After about 5 minutes, reduce heat. Turn veggies ever 5 minutes or so to prevent burning. Add more oil if needed.
*If needed, reduce heat for hamburgers. Depending on their size and the preference for level of being cooked, it could take anywhere from 10-15 minutes to cook, so keep a careful eye on them.
*When close to being finished, add cheese and cover, so the cheese melts completely.
*Serve either on a plate or hamburger rolls. Add whatever condiments are desired.
(Photo by Liz French)
I am deeply honored to have been featured in this interview.
“You may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one. I hope someday you’ll join us. And the world will live as one.”
“Hold fast to dreams,
For if dreams die
Life is a broken-winged bird,
That cannot fly.”