Hacked and Settling for Cauliflower

September 20, 2010

Some DoucheWhore hacked into my site this past weekend. Sarah, the brains behind my whole new WordPress operation, was MIA, running like Forrest and–apparently, if you can count on her Tweets–peeing in the forest as well. She was busy having a life (I know, how dare she?). I was lost in my own proverbial woods; computers and html and all that technical stuff makes me hyperventilate.

My hubs tried to help, but it was pretty apparent after a few hours that the battle was going to end: Spambot: 1,000,000. Team T: 0.0…Shit.

It’s weird how anxious I felt. And violated. And enraged. I kept wandering around the house, muttering, “Why doesn’t this happen to someone who is a dick?” You know,  to someone who doesn’t give to Unicef or adopt from the Humane Society or never carries spare Band-Aids?

Foul words *might* have been uttered over a matter of days (under the breath– I don’t think any virgin ears burst into flames).

“DoucheWhore” might have been my mantra for the weekend.

Strangely, as I was reduced to a puddle of rage and profanity,  a random memory of my sister bubbled up to the surface. Unlike a lot of sister memories, this one made me laugh, because it illuminates, in delicious detail, how differently we’re wired.

I was in middle school, rockin’ the shoulder-pad and glittery lip-glossed look, sitting at the kitchen table. I probably was doing homework of some kind; I always did homework at the kitchen table, talking to Mama as she cooked.

My sister breezed in, taut-muscled in her cheerleading skirt, and announced, “Someone wrote ‘Cindy H________ is a slut’ on the girl’s bathroom wall.”

I was horrified. “Ohmigawd! Seriously? Do you have any idea who did it?”

My mother looked over her shoulder briefly, went back to stirring sauce and said calmly, “It will blow over. Ignore it, dear.”

My sister rolled her eyes and looked at both of us as if we’d lost our minds. “No, don’t you get it?” she said, hands on hips. “I’ve made it. I’m on the bathroom wall.”

I just stared.

Speaking slowly, as if I were impaired, she continued, “POP-u-lar girls get on the bathroom wall.” And with that, she smiled, twirled on one heel and left the room.

Mama and I glanced quickly at one another and didn’t say a word.

I guess she had a point; I mean, why waste good wall space on dorks and losers? I’d never really thought about it before. Usually bathroom scrawlers were angry or jealous and took their wrath out via Sharpie.

My sister had been strategically plotting her ascent to popularity since sophomore year, when she didn’t make the cheerleading squad. She was, at first, crushed by the blow and howled in her room. A few days later,  she got wicked pissed.

My sister is not a person to piss off. She’s ruthless. Weeks after the cheerleading snub, I came across a list on her desk. At the top, she’d written: How To Get Popular. In bullet points, she outlined her plan for World Domination. People to befriend, people to distance herself from, parties to get invited to, boys to charm, clubs to join.

The girl had a strat-e-gy. She spent all year meticulously working her way down that list, and in the end, she won. Her junior year, she made the squad. She had all the “right” friends and a boyfriend to boot. But for some reason, she hadn’t really known she’d won until she saw her name and a choice epithet scrawled on a privy door.

I had to give props to my sister. It took a certain breed to see Victory in being called a slut. I knew I didn’t have that kind of mettle. I also knew that I’d never make the bathroom wall; I had “small potatoes” written all over me.

Which suited me just fine, thank you very much.

I wish I’d had my sister’s ability to make lemonade out of the particular lemons that landed in my lap this weekend.

As I was poor-me-ing myself to death on Facebook this weekend, a sweet friend said something to the effect of, “You just need to stay unpopular. Nobody bothers with you then.”

I’d love to think that I got spammed because I’m popular. But alas, I have Google Analytics and I know that I’m a really small fish in this pond. Numbers don’t lie (another reason I hate them). Actually, I’m fine with my numbers and I love my little blog, but I’m pretty clueless why I got hacked.

I guess I got hacked because there are DoucheWhores in the world. And who knows, maybe I did something stupid and caused this myself–I don’t know jack about computers. I also didn’t know jack about how to fix whatever broke my dang, almost spanking-new, shiny happy website.

I was wicked depressed all weekend, and when I’m depressed, I want carbs. Big, steaming bowls of carbs. Preferably with butter or cheese. All I wanted to do was crawl into bed with a bowl of mashed potatoes and forget this whole business.

Alas, carbs don’t lovva my ass. I was depressed enough; I didn’t need to be hacked and large. So in my addled state, I settled for Mashed Cauliflower and Cheese. I’d seen this recipe last week on the Food Network, and I thought it looked interesting. I’m not really a cauliflower lover, but watching Gina Neely inhale and swoon over her bowl of mashed cruciferous veg, I was almost convinced that it would substitute my beloved potato.

I ate a big bowl of Settling For Cauliflower (it’s pretty good, actually, although I’ll whizz all of the chunks out next time) and whined a little more and then got up off my pathetic duff and called GoDaddy. Luckily, they were able to fix me, clean things up, and sell me a convenient little tool that will hopefully prevent any further DoucheWhoring. Because I just don’t have the constitution for this kind of dramz.

Mashed Cauliflower and Cheese
adapted from Pat and Gina Neely
serves 4 to 6, or one hacked, depressed blogger

1 large head cauliflower, finely chopped (about 2 pounds)
1 cup chicken stock
2 tablespoons roasted garlic*
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup evaporated 2% milk
1 cup shredded reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese (Cabot or Cracker Barrel brand ONLY; otherwise, use full-fat)…I used white cheddar
1/4 cup reduced-fat sour cream
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives or parsley

Add the cauliflower to a medium-sized saucepan along with the chicken stock. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat and cook until tender, about 10 to 15 minutes. Add the roasted garlic and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Stir in the milk and puree with an immersion blender until smooth (you may need a little extra milk, depending on how creamy you want your mixture). Mix in the cheese and taste for seasoning. Stir in sour cream and top with parsley/chives.

* To roast garlic, drizzle 5 or so cloves of garlic (don’t bother peeling it) with a little olive oil. Wrap in aluminum foil and bake at 350 for about 25 minutes. Cool; pop garlic out of the skin and mash with a fork.

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