Ask Luke’s Mother-in-Law: A Key Lime Cheesecake Recipe Every Nerd Can Follow


Martha Boyd is not just Luke’s mother-in-law – she’s also an ex-cop, a landlord, a self-described crazy cat lady, a major Star Trek geek and the widow of a green beret. So go ahead: ask her anything. And we mean anything.

Hello all. Well, as most of you know, LYT and the Mrs. were visiting the desert for the Labor Day Holiday. Yes, he was working most of the time, though he did stop on the computer to clear the table so I could feed him. It is a challenge to feed a food critic (even a fast-food critic). Anyway, I think one of the best things I made this weekend was a key lime cheesecake – it turned out really good. This is a no-bake cheesecake. Start with a graham cracker crust. 2 packs of cream cheese (softened in the microwave), 1/2 can of sweetened condensed milk mix into the soft cheese, add two packs of true lime powder eratoror 2 teaspoons of lime juice. Mix and pour into the crust. Put this back in the refrig or the freezer to re-set the cheese. When you serve, it it is topped with key lime pie filling (I use canned) and whipped cream.

I also made chili with corn chips, burritos with fresh guacamole and clam rolls. It is so great to have someone to cook for.

So now on to the questions.

What’s it like having a ferret? I really thought about getting one but I was scared the amn would take it away.

They are wonderful and funny little guys. It is generally best to get a pair. We had a brother and sister. Especially if you are busy, they can play with each other. They also work well with cats, especially younger cats as the ferrets like rough and tumble play like kitties. Also if you let them run around loose, alway check under the seat cushions before sitting, as they like to hide and we almost sat on them a few times. You will need a rather large cage and a hammock bed that they can hide in. Also be sure to check your state rules for this type of animal. They are pretty well banned in Hawaii, and CA is not real happy with them. Like I said, mine were relocated from the base when housing found them. They are pretty quiet and funny; pretty good house pets.

Who’s your favorite movie villain?

I have a couple. I love the Wicked Witch of the West from The Wizard of Oz and Wicked. Got to love her and the flying monkeys. Also the Evil Queen from Snow White. More contemporay would be the Joker from Batman and Norman Bates from Psycho. There are jusst so many good ones to select from, so it is hard to pick just one. Darth Vader rocks too.

Do you think we will have another sci fi property like Star Trek that has a positive and hopeful vision that isn’t shown naive or just a cover for some kind of corrupt society

I hope so

I recently reread the Hobbit, a book I wasnt sure I would remember much of but once it got to seed cake all the good memories came flooding back

So my question is what work either book film TV show or music do you find yourself coming back to and enjoying over and over again

In books, I love to re-read the Mary Poppins and Paddington book series. In film, Sound of Music, 2001, Planet of the Apes (1st movie). As for TV, I love to watch reruns of Bones (smartly written), Dragnet and Adam 12.

So, what is the most disgusting thing you’ve ever dealt with? This question comes up as I recently used a paperclip to fish hair out of my shower drain. Hair that presumably belonged to a prior resident of my current house given its length. I bent the paperclip initially to clean out the same type of stuff from my sink a week or two ago.

Yep, the hair in the drain thing is pretty gross – next time try Dran-o. It eats the stuff. I really disliked cleaning up files we had stored in the garage when a bobcat ate a rabbit on top of the box – that was fun. Then we had to call the state and try to explain why a box of files was destroyed. We took pictures as proof, as we had an idea they might not buy the bobcat ate my files excuse – you know dog/homework. Sort of the same.

OMG Police Story. I remember one thing about that series (I was pretty young, but my dad loved the show) – David Groh putting peanut butter on some guy’s driver’s license and eating it in front of him during a traffic stop.

I worked with a guy that put ketchup on one and did the same. We had just finished Code 7 (dinner) and still had some of the little packets in the unit. While I was writing the cite, he calmly walked back to the car, grabbed a ketchup, walked back asked me for the license, opened the package and then ate the license. Both the driver’s and my mouths just dropped open. I also worked with a guy that liked to put curses on cars and then tell the driver he had to find a witch doctor to remove it.

Dear Luke’s MIL:
Who was your favorite character on Hill Street Blues? I’m torn between Belker and Jesus (ey yo Frankie!). Which did you prefer, Hill Street or NYPD Blue? I loved ’em both but give the edge to Hill Street, and my dad – whose love of cop drama definitely passed down to me – contends that NYPD Blue was Bochco’s masterstroke.

I’m with you; my fav was Hill Street Blues. I just loved Belker and also Sgt Bates; it was great to see a female Sgt in the generally male-dominated cop shows. I always loved the line at the end of roll call: Let’s be careful out there. I also agree that NYPD Blue was the best that Bochco ever put out for a show. Did you see a new Chips movie may be in the works? Maybe we could get Hill Street too.

Debbie Ha:
How are erasers made?

Well, did you know that the first erasers were made out of bread? It was not until the mid 1700’s that the eraser was made in something other than bread. It took the discovery of rubber (latex). It could be used to rub away pencil marks and in some parts of the world the eraser is still known as a rubber. In the 1800’s the pencil got topped with an eraser. Erasers can be made from natural or synthetic rubber; pigmets are added for different colors, vegetable oil makes soft erasers and pumice to made them abrasive. The rubber is manufactured and sent to to the eraser factory where the pigments, pumice, sulfer, etc are added after the rubber has been pulverized into a powder, everythng is mixed, heated and then formed many times in molds.

Jim Grossnickle-Batterton:
Is it physically possible for the Human Torch to complete the ice bucket challenge? Conversely, is it a challenge for Iceman?

I don’t see why he could not do the challege. For the amount of water and ice that is typically used in the challengge, if he has his full flame going there should be more than enough fire going that just one bucket of ice/water should not be able to put out all of the fire. Flame On

The Iceman could also still do the challenge; after all, he is already cold so the ice would not bother him – but it would not be as much of a challenge as for a regular person.


My, this week’s pictures are by a local artist from Morongo Valley, CA. Janet does wonderfully interesting paintings. She just finished a show that had 365 works, in which she painted one every day. Anyway Frizzy was one of the subjects she painted. I sent her a cute snapshot that LYT took one time at my house with a little hat he put on the cat’s head. I sent it to Janet just because I share my cat pics with friends. She created the little cat in a hat pic. I think he was capture very well. The pic I am including is Mr. Frizzy reviewing his painting I think he was very pleased with the work. I have attached a couple of other works by Janet. She is known on facebook at JEOartist and she can be reached at [email protected] if you see anything you like and would like more info. For use on TR please remember the work is copywrited by the artist.


Thanks so much for reading again this week. I hope you all enjoyed and had a fun read. As always, be good to each other. Huggs.

As always, keep your questions coming, be they foolish, philosophical or anything else! Any questions submitted in comments below will be included in future columns.

Just remember to be polite. She does this for free, and does not suffer rudeness.