It’s time to write down your thoughts

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By Joe Drozda and Bob Bley

Last year, we talked about this same subject and heard back from tailgaters that what we said made good sense. We urged you to put your thoughts to paper,  because we all have a problem.

The problem is that we all have a tendency to repeat our mistakes. But why do we do this? Researchers at MIT’s Picower Institute for Learning think that brain cells in animals only learn from the experiences of doing something right and not when they fail. Earl K. Miller, Picower professor of neuroscience, said, “We have shown that brain cells keep track of whether recent behaviors were successful or not.” Furthermore, he explained that when a behavior was successful, cells became more finely tuned to what the animal was learning. “After a failure, there was little or no change in the brain – nor was there any improvement in behavior.”

As humans, we can collect our thoughts, but we’ll forget things the longer we procrastinate about writing them down. So now is the time to think back on the 2016 season. What were the successes and what were the failures? Be honest and ask yourself, “What internal promises have I made to myself this season?” Here’s a small check list:

  • Have I made do with failing equipment parts that need to be replaced? These are things you repaired almost weekly with duct tape, etc.
  • What equipment that you have needs replaced?
  • What new items of equipment do you need for next year? Remember tailgating/camping equipment goes on sale this time of year.
  • What recipes were successful this year and which were not?
  • What was the worst tailgating experience this season and what was the best? Why?
  • Discuss the above items with your spouse and fellow tailgaters.

Here is a nice winter bar to keep you thinking and feeling happy. We tweaked this recipe just before the end of this season to make it even better!

Improved cinnamon bars a good bar for winter. (Submitted photo)

Improved cinnamon bars a good bar for winter. (Submitted photo)

Improved cinnamon bars

Ingredients:

2 cups flour

1 cup buttermilk

1-1/4 cups granulated sugar

1 tsp. vanilla

1/4 cup brown sugar

1 egg

1/2 cup soft margarine

1 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. cinnamon

3/4 tsp. salt

Frosting:

1 cup powdered sugar

3 tbsp. milk

1/4 tsp. almond extract

1/4 stick butter

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 350.

Combine flour, granulated and brown sugars and margarine; mix on low heat until crumbly. Press two cups of this mixture into a 9 x 13 baking dish sprayed with buttery cooking spray. To the rest of the mixture add the soda, cinnamon, salt, vanilla, buttermilk and egg. Mix well and pour over pressed/packed portion, already in dish. Bake 20-25 minutes at 350, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean; then cool for at least one hour.

For frosting, mix butter, milk, powdered sugar and almond extract. You can double this frosting recipe to make these bars even sweeter.

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