06 July 2009

Morsel Monday: Issue 3

Tokens, Tales, and Troubadours

{{vintage clay poker chips}}

i have hundreds.
they make me happy.

obviously, i'm drawn to the color.
each one seems like a little art hors d'hoeuvre.
delicious to look at.
delightful to hold.

i pick them up everywhere.
the flea market.
thrift stores.
they are my lucky pennies.

somehow, they make me nostalgic.
i know they are worn, scratched, and used.
they are the evidence of games past played.
hopefully laughed over.
i like to think they exchanged hands beneath the busy tongues of laughing men,
swapping stories,
coming together.
. . . friendship.

of course they could have once sat on tables around which there was no laughter.
just anger.
there to be won over as a precursor to property or prostitution . . .
or simply won as a tangible token of pride.

they have traveled places i will most likely never venture,
and have seen things I will most likely never see.
they have endured, perhaps, the palms of hundreds.
i imagine they are quite wise for inanimate objects,
that their stories could rival the tales of talking walls.

they fascinate me.

i have made jewelry from them,
and Christmas ornaments.
(they take to the drill quite nicely.)

i leave them with monetary tips on tables
and slip them in keith's pockets when he has to travel for work.
a reminder of home.
he has traveled the world as well, seeing things I probably never will,
but has somehow found and settled here with me.
he and the chips,
tumbleweeds . . . having now come to a standstill.
filling my world with wonder.
With color.
With laughter.

and so i think i shall return the favor in some small way,
and send these tiny troubadours to you.
a token of thanks,
a wish for good luck and happiness,
a mysterious narrative that
will hopefully inspire you to wonder and daydream.

* * * * *

Dilled Potato Salad with Feta Cheese

2 pounds small red potatoes, unpeeled
1/3 cup red wine vinegar
1/3 cup vegetable oil
3 tablespoons chopped fresh or 1 tablespoon dried dill
1/2 to 1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 large red bell pepper, chopped
1 cucumber, cut in half lengthwise and sliced
1/2 cup sliced green onions
1 (4-ounce) package crumbled feta cheese

Bring potatoes and water to cover to a boil.
Cook 25 to 30 minutes or just until tender; drain and cool. Cut potatoes into quarters.
Whisk together vinegar, oil, dill, salt, and pepper. Pour over warm potatoes.
Stir in chopped bell pepper, cucumber, and green onions; add cheese, and toss to combine.
Cover and chill at least 2 hours.

(I took this recipe from an old Southern Living magazine.
Check out www.southernliving.com/food for other amazing recipes.)


  1. Love your poker chips. I am secretly admitting to not have seen real poker chips and I think they are very pretty.
    And, this potato salad sounds very yummy, and I will make it definitely. I love potato salads.

  2. potato salad is a southern staple!! also, the old clay chips, drilled with a small hole and tied to wine glass stems with a pretty ribbon, make lovely little charms for guests to identify thier glasses . . .

    i might have a poker chip addiction problem . . . (I don't even play poker!)

  3. ; )

    Don't we all have something unique about us?


  4. Lovin' the Monday morsels - I never knew there were so many variations on the poker chips (I've been admiring some in your old posts when they pop up). I'm drawn to anything with a history (Tom and I collect antique toys and advertisements) - oh, and stones now, hopelessly addicted to buying stones. Have a good one! (can't wait to see what you come up with for that enormous piece of bling from over the weekend).

  5. Ha! I'd LOVE some to collect antique toys and have a few old locomotives, but am already running out of room because of all the other stuff I collect. (My husband doesn't understand.) : ) I can't wait to see what I do with that huge quartz either! I was working while too tired last night and melted the setting I had made for it . . . so it's back on the bench in line behind a necklace and two rings, waiting for my skills to catch up to my enthusiasm!!! I'm hoping to have it whipped into something luscious by the end of the week . . .

  6. Horray for morsel-Mondays! The poker chips are delightful and fabulous. There's something so... EARNEST about them. Very nice indeed. (I wonder what they would look like as a piece of jewelry, a sassy poker pendant perhaps..!)

  7. Corinna, hi! I was making jewelry with them for awhile but I think people didn't like the imperfect surfaces, as many of them have little marks or discolorations. Still, I think my skill set is a little better than it was then; maybe I can make something just for fun that people might actually like. If nothing else we can have a virtual critique session! ((Back out to the studio now; I really want at least three new peices listed tomorrow.))

  8. Jess - these are so freaking awesome. I love them!

  9. Cool pokers chips. I've never seen the old poker chips, just the cheap plastic ones.