Friday, September 3, 2021

The Power of Thirteen: Secret Subject Swap


Root Beer Float Cookies, a sweet treat in cookie form. These quick and easy cookies have root beer flavor with a hint of vanilla. | recipe developed by | #recipe #cookies


Welcome to a Secret Subject Swap. This month 5 brave bloggers picked a secret subject for someone else and were assigned a secret subject to interpret in their own style. Today we are all simultaneously divulging our topics and submitting our posts. Read through mine and at the bottom you’ll find links to all of today’s other Secret Subject participants.






My subject is: This month I celebrate my 13th anniversary. Tell me about a 13th something you've celebrated.

It was submitted by: Sarah of What TF Sarah. 
I start each Secret Subject Swap challenge post with the same paragraph. As you can see above, I say "Welcome to a Secret Subject Swap. This month . . ." Today I feel like I need an intro do-over. It should start more like this:
Welcome to a Secret Subject Swap, the one where I'm stumped.
I've been running these challenges for years. Lots of years. In fact, this is my 121st Secret Subject Swap and never before have I not been able to answer a prompt seriously, twist it to meet my needs, or use it to write a piece of fiction. This one though, IDK.
I mean, there are some obvious responses, like having celebrated my boys' 13th birthdays. As superstitiously unlucky as 13 is, that birthday, the start of the teenage years, is a milestone, both for the newly minted teenager grasping onto ever increasing independence, and for the naive parent thinking that surviving infancy and toddler-hood was the tough part. I'm sure we had a birthday party and cake, probably a sleep over and some mayhem, but there isn't really any unique story for me to tell you here.

Same goes for our 13th anniversary. Although it not being on Passover that particular year, as it often is, would have been a bonus for our cake loving selves.
The Power of Thirteen | graphic designed by and property of | #MyGraphics #politics

Although I don't have any memorable and interesting 13th celebrations to share, there are some events that have happened on the 13th that are noteworthy. Not only because they seem to have conquered the bad luck reputation of the 13th, but even more so when the 13th's curse is doubled just by landing on a Friday, like it did last month. I'll get back to that.

Starting with, I'd be remiss not to mention that Hubs' birthday is on the 13th. We've celebrated that more than 13 times, the 13th one being no more or less memorable than any other.

And my Baking In A Tornado FB page was created on the 13th of August, two months after I started this blog, and it's been the opposite of bad luck, it's been a joy. The dynamics of that page changes, but there is a core group of readers who stay in touch with me there, share both the page and the blog promotions. Every one of them are now exclusively non-bloggers, which means that they don't do it for any kind of reciprocation. They like to interact with me, support me by reading my page posts and blog posts, looking for nothing in return except for about 10 minutes of enjoyable (I hope) reading a week and a yummy recipe to try. I know they're reading this post now, thank you.

Root Beer Float Cookies, a sweet treat in cookie form. These quick and easy cookies have root beer flavor with a hint of vanilla. | recipe developed by | #recipe #cookies
 Root Beer Float Cookies

Back to my mention of last month's Friday the 13th. It was a bittersweet day, but a meaningful one. It was the proclaimed trump reinstatement day. Well, according to the delusional Q crew, anyway.
The day was bittersweet for a few reasons. First, because leading up to that day we've seen the delusional Q crew grow and thrive. With that growth has come an emboldened attitude, stance, and aggression, building to what feels like a march to a civil war. Or a second, bloodier, coup attempt not only in the Capitol, but in all of our communities. People wearing masks are targeted. Physically. And threatened. All while our voting rights, districts, and oversight are being manipulated. Systematically. State by state. Putinesque.
Part of why they've been successful, and therefor emboldened is that so far we've allowed all these assaults on our way of life to continue unchecked. 

When the twice impeached traitor told public servants to ignore subpoenas, there were no repercussions. When members of congress illegally stormed the secure SCIF, there were no ramifications. When they lied under oath, nothing. Verbally abused testifying Capitol police, refused to wear a mask when hiding from the insurgents, screamed verbal assaults at other members of congress, nothing. Hatch Act violations, Emoluments Clause violations, detouring troups to trump properties . . . Nothing, nothing, nothing. Of course it's getting worse.

I wrote a blog post back in 2012. A tongue in cheek piece of humor about having a cold. Someone who deliberately named him/herself "Liberals Deserve to Die" found that post last month and tried to leave some sick, ignorant comments on it. I was going to post them here, but I see no point in deleting them from comment moderation only to publish them on this blog after all, so I'm providing a link to them in a post I made on my personal FB page, you can go HERE to read it if you want.
If you did read them, you understand that I'm not exaggerating the level of vitriol and danger to those of us with a heart and a brain.
But that day last month, Friday, August 13th came and, of course, there was no coronation or magical reinstatement. There were plenty of really funny memes and tweets about it, but it was hard to laugh. Because despite this day having passed, the delusion remains, the march to autocracy continues to gain strength, and the danger that has trickled down to our communities continues to exacerbate.

Sorry Sarah, not something to celebrate like your 13th anniversary, but a day that symbolizes the strengthening, viable assault on our freedom at this moment in time. Yes, we sidestepped the "reinstatement," but it was never about that anyway, it was about further coalescing the Q crew. It has become a day in our history that's rife with dire warnings and flaming red flags that we cannot (continue to) dismiss. And a day that shines a spotlight on our conundrum: do we continue to meet lies, delusion, aggression, and treason without a united, proactive, strategic resistance?  

Or will this particular 13th become the turning point that the future of a once civilized society needs it to be?

Secret Subject Swap, a multi-blogger writing challenge | developed and run by | #MyGraphicsHere are links to all the sites now featuring Secret Subject Swap posts. Sit back, grab a cup, and check them all out. See you there:

Wandering Web Designer


What TF Sarah  

Part-time Working Hockey Mom 

Baking In A Tornado signature | | #MyGraphics

 Root Beer Float Cookies   

Printable Recipe

Ingredients (makes about 3 1/2 dz):
1 stick butter, softened
1 stick margarine, softened
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 TBSP root beer
2 eggs
2 1/4 cups flour
3 oz box root beer instant pudding mix
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
4 squares (2 oz each) vanilla bark
*Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cover baking sheets with parchment paper. Coarsely chop the vanilla bark.
*Cream the butter, margarine, brown sugar, and root beer. Once incorporated, beat in the eggs.
*Carefully at first, beat in the flour, pudding mix, baking soda, and salt. Last, mix in the vanilla bark.
*Drop onto the baking sheets by scant tablespoons. Bake for 10 - 12 minutes. Allow to set on the baking sheets for 2 minutes before removing.


  1. My husband is going to Looove these cookies! Julie/aka Carol Cassara

  2. Love the energy of the 13. I once dated a man whose birthday was on the 13th... it didn't go so well... but I won't blame 13 for it! :)

  3. Root beer pudding mix? I have to find the store where you shop, either that or I'm quite non observant (probably the latter)because...well, I have never heard of that pudding flavor, haven't had a root beer float in so long and I love root beer as a soda. To have it in cookies! Also: Isn't it strange how certain numbers have power for certain people? And even stranger how that evil troll, after all those comments, praised your recipes. ?????? Mind blowing. Friday the 13th may have passed but not the danger, which increases daily. Alana

    1. The root beer pudding mix is by Sonic (the drive in restaurants) and I've found it in a few stores.
      And that evil troll, I'm not sure whether he/she was actually praising the recipes or making fun of me. Tone of voice is so hard to interpret when the message is in writing.

  4. People are so awful. I finally had a melt down last night with everything that is going on. Between Twitter and CNN I felt like I was having a nervous breakdown. I just don't know where to go with all of this anger. How are we ever going to teach our children consequences when it's proven over and over that there isn't any.

    1. Not only are consequences going to be harder to teach, but how do you explain that some of our youth's parents are actually a dangerous health risk. This is such a difficult time to parent, I'm glad my boys are older.

  5. I can't seem to wrap my head around the utter stupidity that is growing more and more rampant by the day. I'm glad my parents have moved through the veil and beyond all this idiocy. They would be shocked speechless by the enmasse embrace of "lies, delusion, aggression, and treason" that is becoming so blatant. Much as I am!

    1. I can't believe it either, and it's no so far past words, it's become dangerous.

  6. As I was reading your prompt, I used my fingers to count the years you (and I) have been blogging. Not at 13 years yet, but getting closer. Speaking of closer, Colin turns 13 years old in two weeks time. How did this happen?
    Fortunately, reporting about a certain former president has considerably slowed down in Europe. If it weren't for the memes, I wouldn't even have heard about the fairy tale of the reinstatement day. Does he not know when enough is enough?

    1. It's shocking to think that Colin was just a baby when we first "met." Happy birthday to him, and just so you know, I'm wishing you luck (and patience) through the teenage years. Buy plenty of hair dye!

  7. The cookies look nice but I have no idea what root beer tastes like.

    1. You've never had a root beer float? You need to fix that.

  8. I had no idea you could get root beer flavored pudding; it isn't stocked at any of the stores I shop at. I wonder if you could use vanilla pudding and root beer extract?

  9. I stumped you...that's pretty magical.
    Yes, last month showed just how ridiculous the Orange Cult really is. I'll be happy when all of this is just a bad memory, but the sad thing is this will be documented and taught in history classes.

    1. I actually think it's a good thing that this will be documented and taught in history classes. The bad thing is that there will be those who will deny it.

  10. Whether i agree with a particular president or not, hate, meanness, war, violence, and hostile take-overs have no place here. If you want your person in office, get that person fairly and properly elected. If i say more, i am afraid i will jsut rant.

  11. Yes, I too know someone who thought there would be a magical reinstatement and because she's my sister, I left the argument to a minimum. Things are strange. Hope you have a good week.

    1. Sounds like a difficult situation, when it involves your sister. Glad you're able to keep the political talk to a minimum.


Warning: Comment at your own risk. I have Comment Moderation, meaning I approve all comments before they show up here. So go ahead, I'm not scared!