Editor's Notebook

Making music, meals keeps life interesting

| March 2008

Once again, there is so much to enjoy in this issue of CAPPER'S, it's hard to settle on one idea to write about - although for my money, one can hardly go wrong with music and food.

On Page 18, we have the story of Rupert Otto, who at the tender age of 88 is still practicing and performing his music with a gusto that keeps bringing listeners to his concerts. As a musician, I know the value of music for keeping the mind sharp and relationships vital. If you want to keep those synapses firing and your connections to other people assured, make music and invite other people to be a part of it. I'm convinced that could be one of the paths to world peace, if we could all just quit fussing with each other and focus on creating some harmony.

On Page 24, we offer some delicious-sounding and unusual potato-based recipes. I am a born-again potato lover who has recently rediscovered exactly how flavorful fresh potatoes can be. I ordered cranberry red potatoes, Yukon Gold, Banana Fingerlings and some deep purple varieties from a Maine organic potato farm last year and planted them without much expectation in my Kansas garden. Now, after a modest but satisfying harvest, I'm completely hooked.

Potatoes don't have to be just a base for sauces and cheese when you're lucky enough to have freshly harvested tubers, particularly of the heirloom varieties. Maybe it's the shamrocks on my family tree that make me so enthusiastic about potatoes, but I'm looking forward to trying this month's 'Kootu Curry' recipe as soon as I can.

We didn't set out for this issue to have a compassion theme, but several of our stories fit the bill. Just imagine what a world we'd live in if more of us took our cues from men like Capt. Scott Southworth, the soldier who adopted a young Iraqi boy (Page 16); or the Jefferson City, Mo., volunteers who hand-sew stuffed bears for all the children in treatment in the local hospital (Page 14); or the shoe company CEO who sees to it that his company's wares are recycled for impoverished people on a different continent (Page 15). We all have the potential of that kind of generosity, and these stalwarts show us the way to give it individual expression.

In this issue we offer the last of our fascinating series of essays by Laura Ingalls Wilder - which are as much a window on our nation's history as a way to deepen our understanding of a home-grown American writer (Page 46). We'll start a new fiction story - The Cellar, by D. Susan Rutz - in the April issue of CAPPER'S, which should give our story-loving readers something to anticipate.

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