Semi-feverish rambling Armitage picspam about soup and romance. More or less. This title isn’t very good.
So I have a bunch of stuff regarding Armitage half written, but this is not going to be the day when anything beautiful coheres. Also I wrote a lot of email today.
Now there’s some coherent beauty. Richard Armitage in Strike Back 1.6. I had sort of forgotten about these eyes until Jane asked for a cap with the green scarf in her interview. Oh, oh, oh. Source: RichardArmitageNet.com
Yes, I am really sick. And I didn’t have a chance to make The Soup. You know, The Soup that some people’s mothers made for them when they were sick. My mother is not very sweetly motherly (think: Mrs. Thornton), but her motherliness still extended to making The Soup.
This dish is not complicated; it’s one of the easiest things in the world to make; and it always turns out right, which makes it rewarding: Saute a little onion and celery and parsnip or celery root if you have it in butter, take a whole chicken (cleaned) and put it in the pot, add a bay leaf and a bunch of black peppercorns, peeled whole garlic clove optional (my mom didn’t), cover everything with water, salt, and then cook until the chicken falls off the bones. Cool, pick the carcass clean (this step is the main reason people don’t make it more often, I am convinced, but it’s not that difficult, just a little slippery), sieve all the inedible stuff out of the broth and discard, put the meat back in. Skim off some of the fat, but not all of it, because a little chicken fat is good for an invalid. My mom always cooked the carrots (cut in largish diagonalish coins) *after* the soup was done because we didn’t like mushy carrots. Add freshly ground black pepper to taste. If you’re not satisfied with the intensity of the broth you can cheat by adding a bouillon cube, although you shouldn’t do this for invalids, as bouillon is mostly salt, and invalids don’t need to be retaining water. If you need a carbohydrate (most invalids don’t, and are better served by lighter fare), you can toast a piece of sourdough bread and put it in the bowl before you ladle the soup on top of it. Or you could cook rice or noodles in the broth. Or make dumplings. Or matzah balls. Though even a single matzah ball will knock an invalid flat like a hurricane. But if you *do* make matzah balls, use some of the chicken fat you skimmed off the broth instead of vegetable oil. Trust, me, you’ll never go back …
The doctor I saw this morning did not look like this. He may have been more competent. Richard Armitage in Doctors. Source: RichardArmitageNet.com
I digress. I still have a 101° fever. After four days, sigh. Says the doctor, whom I finally sought out today: “you are really sick.” I had noticed that, even in my feverish state. Supposedly, this is the upswing.
You know: That Soup. My best friend in college, who unfortunately grew up without a mother, still remembers the times when I made it for her. The physicist, when we broke up, asked me for the recipe — stating explicitly that the one thing he really wanted to take away from our relationship was the soup. Ex-SO was rather more skeptical; I don’t think homemade chicken soup plays the emotional role in German culture it does in the U.S. That Soup. The one I didn’t make on Monday because I didn’t think I was really That Sick.
That was a mistake.
Mr. Thornton (Richard Armitage) and Higgins (Brendan Coyle) eat some stew together in episode 4 of North & South, and it’s really very good. Still not That Soup, though. Source: RichardArmitageNet.com
When I know I’m getting really sick I have this whole prophylactic routine I follow. I’m sure it’s primarily of psychological value. I make The Soup. I make my bed. I turn the heat up really high and close the windows and the curtains. I eat as much soup as I can and brew a big thermos of gunpowder tea. I put on all the clothes I can stand, crawl under all the covers I can tolerate, drink as much gunpowder as I can, and when I am not drinking tea, I suck aggressively on sugarless throat lozenges. All the lights are turned off in the room, which must be as dark and as silent as possible. I lie in bed and if I can’t sleep, I doze. No reading, tv watching, music listening, or, if possible, thinking allowed. If I am sick enough to be doing this, I’m usually not well enough to be thinking, anyway. And: childhood lesson: If you are trying to get better, you must be really concentrating on the problem. For as long as you can stand it. Which is usually no more than about eight hours, unless I’m sleeping. Childhood lesson the second: lying abed is a morally questionable activity. Which is probably why I love it so much.
I should have done that on Monday, but didn’t because I wasn’t feeling That Sick. Tuesday was a disaster — twelve-hour teaching day that I barely got through and only pursued to its close because canceling an evening class is missing a whole week. As a consequence of which I was forced to do the ritual, finally, on Wednesday, when I was That Sick, and again yesterday (forced to cancel classes), and again today, except I no longer had the stamina to make The Soup. I was forced to conduct the whole ritual with phở gà (Viet chicken soup with noodles), and it just isn’t quite the same. Don’t get me wrong, it was good — and that poor delivery guy who’s come to my apartment now four or five times with the phở gà is getting really concerned about me. His English isn’t that great, but today he patted me on the shoulder when he gave me the bag with the phở gà in it.
There’s some weird missing logical transition here that I can’t figure out just now. I’ll just leave it out. I do have a fever.
Something I’d love to be doing in bed. Porter (Richard Armitage) kisses Danni (Shelly Conn) while they are cramming for his mission as a ballistic weapons profiteer in Strike Back 1.5. Source: RichardArmitageNet.com
Anyway, when I am sick my libido goes to h***. Which is fine because the “concentrate on getting better” ritual is not supposed to be an opportunity for unfettered indulgence in sexual fantasy, which is more or less my go to activity when I’m lying on my back, in bed, or when I’m lying on my side, in bed, or when I’m lying on my stomach, in bed. This may be why lying in bed was considered morally questionable. This may be why I love it so much. Anyway, any other day I’d just fantasize myself into some liplock with Porter, but I’m not supposed to be fantasizing about kissing or anything else when I’m sick. Clear the throat, clear the sinuses, clear the mind — clear the illness.
But I’ve said before that I think Armitagemania is affecting my fantasies, and the last few days I’ve just been trapped in the thought of lying in Porter’s arms, while sick, with him stroking me. This is not me. I’m not cuddly. My best friend from college (referenced above) has said a few times that she’s worried about me — having never indulged in romantic or sweet fantasy before, I seem to her to be taking dangerous steps. What happens when the fantasy is over? she’s asked more than once when I’ve discussed Armitagemania with her. What happens when there’s no romantic hero waiting for you?
It’s one of those questions I can’t really answer, although I’ve started to wonder if one important reason that romance in the traditional sense (I don’t mean sex, or love — I’ve had both of those things) has never happened to me is that I have had no expectation that it would. I’ve been preoccupied with other things. I can’t be bothered now to think of the bad things that might happen later, though, and as with most things I think I’ll deal with the consequence when it materializes.
Meanwhile I just want to be in bed with John Porter petting me and telling me the fever will be over soon. With my head on his shoulder and my arm over his stomach. It doesn’t even matter to me that it doesn’t seem like Porter’s the kind of guy to play motherly nursemaid. I just don’t care.
Excuse me while I go back there.