May you live in interesting times.
On the other hand...
There are already lots of movies about young people boxing in Asia.
Seriously, tho, the whole clamber onto every new bandwagon thing is a large part of why I don't bother watching most of what comes out of Hollywood. The business interests there tend to echo my wee wifey's 7th grade teacher, who told the class "When I said be creative, I didn't mean be original."
U.S. President George W Bush uses the F-word in public.
Tomorrow's high, whenever I get up....
No wonder I haven't gotten a Day by Day mention yet.
One of the benefits of living in the inner city is the grocery shopping. Anything exotic which makes it to the store doesn't sell and winds up getting closed out. I got a dozen tins of King Oscar sardines with pesto for fifty cents each, and three bottles of Woodford Reserve bourbon for half price because it isn't Seven Crown or Crown Royal. At the same time, produce also gets closed out instead of discarded, because some of the customers are frugal enough to pay a bit for it. Last week I spotted nicely ripe bananas for nineteen cents a pound, and this is what my wee wifey did with them. It is rich, dense and moist, yet not heavy.
Best Banana Cake -
2 cups flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter
1 1/2 cups sugar -- divided
2 egg yolks -- beaten
1 cup very ripe banana pulp -- mashed
1/3 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 egg whites
Butter and flour a 9" or 10" tube or Bundt pan. If a 10 inch tube pan is used, double the recipe; a high cake will result.
In a mixing bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
In a separate bowl, cream the butter until soft; gradually add the 1 cup sugar, beating constantly. Continue to beat the mixture until it is light and fluffy.
One at a time, add the egg yolks to the butter mixture, beating well after each addition.
In a separate bowl, combine the banana pulp, sour cream and vanilla.
Gradually combine the wet and dry ingredients, beginning and ending with the dry; beat the batter well after each addition.
Beat the egg whites until soft mounds form; gradually add the 1/2 cup sugar and continue beating until the egg whites are stiff. Fold them into the batter.
Spoon the batter into the prepared pan and bake the banana cake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes, or until a knife inserted at the center comes out clean. Remove the cake from the oven and allow it to cool 10 minutes before inverting the pan.
NOTES : Makes one 9 or 10 inch cake. By the way, if you wind up with a little extra batter, as happened this time, baking it in a Corel coffee mug will distract would-be nibblers until it is time to present the cake. Serve with powdered sugar sprinkled on top, spread with your favorite frosting, or plain with Strawberry Coulis to spoon over the slices.
Strawberry Coulis (Strawberry Sauce)
1 package frozen strawberries in syrup
Defrost frozen strawberries. Dump into blender or food processor & blend on high.
Taste, if you want it sweeter add powdered sugar a bit at a time. I don't use any extra sugar.
Use as a sauce for ice cream, cake, pancakes or as a dipping sauce for sugar or butter cookies.
NOTE: You can make coulis with other fruits: Frozen fruit, dump in blender & add about 1/2 cup powdered sugar (to start). Taste. HOWEVER, blackberries & raspberries require straining of the seeds, blueberries sometimes need to be strained for the skin; peaches & strawberries are the easiest.
A CHOCOLATE CREAM CHEESE FROSTING
1/3 Cup milk
3 Oz. cream cheese
2 1/2 Cups confectioners suga -- sifted
1 Square unsweetened chocolate -- (1 oz.) melted
1 Tsp. vanilla
1 Dash salt
In mixing bowl beat milk and cheese until smooth.
Gradually add your sugar, beat again until smooth.
Stir in your melted chocolate, vanilla and salt, beat until blended.
"Have to admit it's getting better, getting better all the time."
"All animals are equal. Some are more equal than others."
Mike the Librarian reports that his grandfather has passed away after living a long and full life despite having been crippled by polio. The disease, obliterated by vaccination in the 1950s, was also known as infantile paralysis. I myself had a childhood friend whose braced legs were mere supports which he swung about with the aid of crutches, and Mike's grandfather may not have had the benefit of modern physical therapy until after atrophy set in.
Hunter S. Thompson's lawyer reports that a probable cause for his client's suicide was a broken leg which resulted in a limp.
When I first heard about Dan Rather building a news story upon a batch of dubious documents, I have to admit that it crossed my mind that maybe they were planted by Karl Rove. I could certainly believe that he would rub his hands together and chortle with glee over the possible impact.
As soon as I found out what utter bogus incompetent forgeries they were, I rejected the idea. I cannot believe that Karl Rove believed that Dan Rather would be so blinded as to fall for such a joke, rush to get it on the air in time to be utterly debunked before the election, and then leave his neck on the chopping block long enough for the axe, dull as it was, to fall.
Cripes, Suzette has the Word of the Day thingie in her sidebar. My vocabulary is already sufficiently broad, diverse and eclectic, and today's word is nothing special, but the bonus quote is downright important.
Too many parents make life hard for their children by trying, too zealously, to make it easy for them. -Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, poet, dramatist, novelist, and philosopher (1749-1832)
I've added a bunch of links; about half of the reciprocals I've meant to get to. More will be coming. If anyone actually wants to be listed here, just let me know. I have continued the practice of sometimes using non-standards site names; the conceit is that this will lead people to check out something they've been ignoring. I've confirmed that this practice does not confuse the Ecosystem. I've also left the one glaring error which as far as I know has not yet been noticed by anyone.
DHL used to be best known for delivering packages anywhere in the world, and for the bizarre developments regarding H's estate. Now they are entering the U.S. parcel delivery market with the slogan "Yellow is the new brown". Maybe they should have considered what substance the color brown brings to mind.
Is this the reason vampires survive for centuries?
Actually, I don't think so. My understanding is that what they actually drain from their victims is the life force, and that the blood is simply a nutrient. The reason vampires don't like garlic is that it cleanses the blood of soluble fats, making it less beneficial to them.
Seriously, if the research I linked leads to longevity therapy, I believe it will more nearly resemble dialysis rather than transfusion. When I was younger, I earned my living in ways which was very stressful to my muscles. I would get "hurts so good" trigger point massages, and the therapist always urged me to drink plenty of water afterwards to "flush the toxins freed by the massage".
We developed this corn salad from the ears of corn sold by Mexican street vendors, which we first encountered many years ago at Chicago's old Maxwell Street market. It is a season to taste and measure by eye project rather than a precise recipe, and has been consistantly popular at potlucks and family gatherings.
frozen corn - 2 16 oz bags
mayonaise - two dollops - heaping serving spoons
parmesan cheese - sufficient to coat mayoed corn
seasoning - to taste, as described
Leave the bags of corn in the refrigerator to defrost. Dump into a microwave-safe mixing bowl and flash for a couple of minutes, just till warm, and drain off any liquid. Add mayonaise and mix, then add cheese and mix until coated and mayo is absorbed. When my wee wifey makes the salad, she uses a tablespoon of adobo seasoning, plus half a teaspoon of red pepper. The adobo is more salt than aything else, so I just use half a teaspoon of red pepper and half a teaspoon of cumin powder. The salad can be served hot or cold, but the flavor improves with a few hours in the refrigerator for the flavor to meld, so flash it again for a few minutes if serving as a side dish.
Petroleum traders, set upon by Greenpeace activists disappointed that the Kyoto Protocols aren't doing enough to destroy the world economy, responded by beating the oil shale out of the protesters. The most interesting thing about the story is the class struggle aspect of the incident. The news report quotes one of the protesters as saying "They were just Cockney barrow boy spivs." If members of the elite want barrow boys to listen to their point of view, perhaps they should try talking as equals instead of using whistles and foghorns.
Be careful what you ask for.
You Just might get it.
Milwaukee's Journal Communications absorbed the competing Sentinel to produce the publication we call the Jourinal. The paper's editorial board and columnists are not much less left-wing than the local alternative papers, but there are reporters on the staff who get away with flagrant acts of journalism, and the same corporation also owns the more blog-friendly of the two conservative talk radio stations here. It would seem that Tulsa has it far worse than we do.
Growing up in Chicago in the early '60s I was totally unaware of the sport of surfing. When I first heard the song which sounded like "Serpent Safari" I was totally mystified as to why anyone whould organise a snake hunt. My question might have been at least partially answered by this report.
There has been a lot of discussion around Wisconsin about the beer distributor employee who lost his job after a photo of him drinking a competitor's product appeared in a local newspaper. A lot of people think that he was treated unfairly, and that what he does on his own time is none of his employer's business. If he had merely been seen drinking the wrong brand by a coworker who reported him, I would agree. I do not believe that it was the choice of beer which cost him his job, but rather the decision to share his identity with the reporter. Most people are flattered to be depicted in the nightlife column, but his occupation carried with it an obligation to say no thank you, after which journalistic ethics would have given the paper an obligation not to depict a man who made his living moving pallets of Miller products endorsing (as management viewed it) Bud Light.
Just about everyone is posting something mushy for Valentine's Day. Here's a little poem which I composed for my wee wifey, the girl with the curl in the middle of her forehead:
Roses are rosey,
Violets are violet.
I will keep loving
You for a wiolyet.
Actually, the most effective way to cheat on a drug test is to actually abstain. In Sizemore's case it is probably better for him that he got caught, but pre-employment screenings create a situation where an occasional user is more likely to indulge after, rather than before, landing a new job.
There is a certain blogger who is well known for his resemblance to the relationship between a fictional mineral and an adjective. I decided long ago that the adjective by itself in fact describes him. A call has gone out for a coordinated mocking of him, and I am delighted to join in.
I checked out his blog a couple of times back when there was a belief going around that he was intelligent, but I kept encountering the bizarre notion that there is no liberal media bias and crossed him off my list. I've run into him recently in various comment threads lately, and one of his assertions really gets to me. He loves to generalize about how "We are not safer." It is certainly possible to debate whether giving those who wish to martyr themselves in attacks against Americans the opportunity to do so far from our shores somehow endangers us here at home, but even if it somehow does, I am still safer. I just got a brake job done on my car.
By the way, has anyone ever determined whether the kryptonite in question is green, red, or one of the rarer varieties?
That's what Emrack and Hunter are on, the roadagain. Right now they are on their way to central Florida, and they will probably pass thru Texas before heading back north I may have more tales of my son, but these will be the last images of the canine for at least a couple of months.
I don't recall where the comment thread was in which someone mentioned the book Class by Paul Fussell, but I found the book to be well worth reading. The book is still wonderfully amusing, but much has changed since it was published in 1983. The association of "Nerd" with "Prole" has faded, and his "Category X" of people who have stepped away from the class status ladder has expanded and even begun to stratify.
One item in the book, however, I found particularly timely. As an appendix, there is a fictional advice column for people who wish to present themselves as upper class.
Dear Sir: What about the class aspects of standing on the sidewalk in a large cityy and eating a hot dog or similar viand bought from a street peddler presiding over one of those little carts? Puzzled
Dear puzzled: Only people very expensively dressed or terribly good-looking can do this without impairing their status. Middle-class people demean themselves further by doing this sort of thing, but uppers can confirm their high status by it, like appearing at an afternoon ball game in a costlysuit, suggesting that you're doing the occasion honor. You also, in both activities, get high class-credit for your upper-class magnanimity in appearing to be democratic.
John Kerry failed consistantly and spectacularly at this, yet never stopped trying.
We are but pawns...
Nope, correction, make that prawns.
As we muddle along with our move, books are a major part of what is getting shuffled about. This morning, walking past a stack of them, my eye was caught by an old pulp paperback, The Mean Streets, by Thomas B. Dewey. Altho the blurb identifies it as "the story of a town terrorized by a juvenile gang" my first thought was as to how to calculate the arithmetic mean of a group of streets.
2 cups wine vinegar (red or white)
1 pound berries (cranberries, blueberries, strawberry or raspberries)
1 bunch herbs - your choice (optional), cut up or chopped
Put the vinegar into a medium, nonreactive saucepan and warm over low heat just until it begins to give off vapor (do not bring to a boil). Stir in cranberries, blueberries, raspberries or strawberries and cook for 1 minute.
Pour the mixture into a 1 quart mason jar and allow to cool to room temperature, about 10-15 minutes. Add the herbs at this point if you wish. Store the jar out of direct sunlight and away from heat for about a week, shake it every now and then while the mixture steeps. The vinegar will absorb most of the pigment from the fruit.
Strain the contents through a fine sieve into a 4-cup glass measuring cup. Mash the fruit with a potato masher before straining it. Discard the fruit residue and rinse the sieve. Rinse the Mason jar and return the strained vinegar to the jar. Dampen a flat-bottom coffee filter and fit it into the sieve. Rinse the measuring cup, place the sieve on top, and pour in the vinegar a bit at a time, allowing it to drip into the measuring cup. Transfer the vinegar to flasks, bottles, or cruets. The vinegar should be ready to use immediately, with a shelf life of at least 1 year.
YIELD: 2 cups
CRANBERRIES: Cook the cranberries (a 12 oz bag is fine) in about 1/4 cup of water until the cranberries start to pop. Mix with the vinegar.
My wee wifey's personal favorite combinations:
blueberry-basil with red wine vinegar(an absolutely gorgeous deep claret color) cranberry-tarragon with red wine vinegar
raspberry with white wine vinegar (a beautiful red color)
strawberry-cilantro with red or white wine vinegar (not as intense a color as the raspberry if using white wine vinegar).
Use as you would just about any vinegar in a recipe.
1 cup fruit vinegar, 1 cup olive oil 1 TBSP crushed Italian herbs/seasoning.
It is OK to use frozen fruit , just don't use the ones which have sugar added.
Fancy stoppered bottles and cruets are commonly available at thrift stores. See any homebrewing text or website for advice on how to clean them before use.
I just took a look at the lovely bottle of rasberry vinegar on our kitchen table, and noticed that it has gained in clarity by virtue of a bit of precipitate at the bottom. I therefore recommend that if you are making this for gifting or entertaining that you filter it into a storage jar and let stand a week before transferring into the fancy container, and filter again at that time.
I have just finished reading By Order Of The President, the latest pageturner from W.E.B. Griffin. It has everything a Butterworth fan could hope for. Venal and incompetent people at the CIA, the FBI, and the State Department. A bunch of warriors with strong emotional ties to one another, one of whom travels in a privately owned Lear jet. Humor and combat, casual sex (off-camera) and romance, a convoluted plot hinging partly on coincidence and freebies which keeps you on the edge of your seat till the last few pages, where it dribbles off to a happy ending.
Best of all, it is the start of a brand new series. No back story details for a new reader to miss, and no continuity lapses to irritate the devoted follower. What ever happened to Charlie's aunt?
I'm having a difficult time parsing the adjective in the title to this post. Would it not be more correct to speak of wolveresque embarassment?
It seems that it is not only the gambling interests who are able to buy influence from Wisconsin's Govorner Doyle. Maybe these folks should have to do what the real estate developers who donated to my former Alderman's campaign fund around the time of a zoning decision did - testify in Federal court that the money was not extorted from them.
All the Nuge that's fit to print.
I've succeeded in raising eyebrows with Uncle Ted's help in the past. A business I was dealing with was running a promotion in support of the Make-A_Wish Foundation, and I attempted to get them to treat the Hunt of a Lifetime as equivalent. I did not get a favorable response, which reminds me, I need to go support the National Take a Kid Hunting Foundation tomorrow.
Triticale says, the person who blogs as the Manalo, triticale thinks she is an American girl with a bachelors degree in English Lit, working now on a Masters in Marketing, but the schtick, it is very amusing.
As for myself, I'd rather see them send the Mission Impossible team, or maybe just have John McClane happen to be stuck in the building.
The recent report of aircraft companies seeking oppresive royalties from model manufacturers has been getting some attention in the blogosphere. Railroad modelers are facing similar issues, but with some twists of interest to anyone who cares about Intellectual Property issues.
The Chessie System has product value worth protecting in the sleeping kitten trademark, and hobbyists understand this. At one point their lawyers got the notion that in order to protect a trademark you had to charge per usage of it, and they went after the producers of model railroad decals and collectables. The first time this happened they backed down, but now they corporation is again talking of making it more expensive to model the Chessie and its predecessors than to model other railroads.
The Union Pacific is taking things farther. Along with royalties set about right to take the profit out of producing UP model products, they are claiming extraordinary IP rights. Upon completion of production of any model of Union Pacific rolling stock, locomotives or structure, they insist that the tooling revert to the corporation. This could have repercussions if used as a precedent in other fields of endeavor.
These railroads are being foolish. Altho, lucky for them, model railroaders are not political enough to rise up and organise a boycott, it is wondrously easy not to model the Union Pacific. Aside from the many competitors who see no need to resort to such measures, there is also a glorious tradition known as freelancing. One of the first truly great model railroads was the Gorre and Daphetid and I can expect as much acceptence and nearly as many contest points for models of Phoenix - Durango rolling stock as for those with known prototypes. There is also a trend toward starting over in a new scale and/or gauge; there may well be a disproportionate number of HO scale UP models cut up by people switching to On30.
The biggest reason that the Union Pacific is foolish for being so anal about trademark and IP is that altho their business is booming right now they are in competition with other railroads and with other forms of transportation. There are demographic reasons why antagonizing model railroaders and railfans is likely to be detrimental to the marketing of transportation service. Adverse publicity could cost more in core revenue that might me gained in fringe royalties.
If you ever wondered where the yellow went (I never believed the picture, in MAD magazine, of a display case containing it all) you may find this new theory interesting.
I was checking out various livebloggers of the SOTU, and that means checking out their other posts. I thereby happened upon a link which in turn led me to a source for fresh links from across the web!
Funny thing, tho. I've had the octopus linked in my OTHER STUFF list for about a year, along with other odd links, no promise of freshness, from across the web. There is also the possibillity of running into the unexpected among my blog links.
Surely other people call the pudding by that name. After all, there was a pasta restaurant in Chicago called Busghetti, and I know a sawed-off jarhead who shakes a tower by way of bathing. Anyway, as in the ice cream recipe a while back, the pudding adds both flavor and reliable consistancy.
1 4-serving-size pkg. cook-and-serve butterscotch pudding mix
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup evaporated milk
1 Tbsp. butter
1 1/2 cups toasted pecan halves (see below)
Line cookie sheet with waxed paper; set aside.
In 2-quart saucepan, combine pudding mix, granulated sugar, brown sugar, evaporated milk, and butter. Cook and stir over medium heat until mixture boils (about 12 minutes). Clip a candy thermometer to side of pan. Reduce heat to medium-low; continue boiling at a moderate, steady rate, stirring frequently, until thermometer registers 234F, soft-ball (fast pitch) stage (8 to 10 minutes). Remove saucepan from heat. Remove candy thermometer. Stir in pecans. Beat with a wooden spoon until candy just begins to thicken but is still glossy (about 3 minutes). Working quickly, drop by teaspoonfuls onto prepared cookie sheet. (If candy sets up too much, add a few drops of hot water and stir until smooth again.) Let stand until firm. Makes about 30 pieces.
You can get toasted pecans from the fancy nut shops, but they are easy to do and you can save a tad. It's pretty much just coat them with melted butter and set on a cookie sheet in a 350F oven. A quarter stick should do for a cup and a half of nuts. Some people add seasonings to the butter. The hot sauce and whatsthishere sauce are great for munchie nuts, but out of place here. A quarter teaspoon of cake spice stirred into the butter would work far better here. Once she nuts start to brown, turn off the oven, but leave the nuts in till it cools down.
While on the subject of recipes, I need some help formulating a mixed drink which I have in mind. What else besides blended American Whiskey and Mango nectar would go into a Foxtrot?
From Varifrank - a great idea for a poster:
The government of Saudi Arabia can demonstrate its leadership in the region by expanding the role of its people in determining their future. And the great and proud nation of Egypt, which showed the way toward peace in the Middle East, can now show the way toward democracy in the Middle East.
This is the equivalent of the Babe Ruth “called shot”
Soon I will send to Congress a proposal to fund special training for defense counsel in capital cases, because people on trial for their lives must have competent lawyers by their side.
Very unusual place to draw a line in the sand; much closer to the other side's stated position than they are usually drawn. I anticipate some interesting debate when this one hits.
The update here may explain why Amritas is so taken with my style of word play.
Light my fire.
Hugging trees isn't really the best way to protect them. More trees have been lost to fire in the U.S. in the last few years than were "lost" to logging in the forests which burned, and it is the density and continuity of the forests which enables the fires to spread so far.
As for the next post down, I encountered that information decades ago in a cheap paperback guy guide. The secret is in riding the line between subliminal and undetectable.
In my younger days, I thought that anthropoid robots were cool, to the point of believing the comic book notion that one could conquer the world with an army of them. It took me a while after figuring out that I didn't really want to conquer the world to figure out that the human form is far from optimal as a design for a robot.
Les Jones has taken my notion that a dedicated dishwashing machine makes more sense than having a multifunction robot one step farther, by suggesting that any machine that can be given a task and left to complete it is indeed a robot.
There are other responsibilities one can take on, aside from hosting a National Specialty, which could lead one to understand why I paraphrase the veteran's cliche. If there is one thing I learned in the Girl Scouts, it is never volunteer for anything.