Saturday, November 22, 2008
Sunday, November 09, 2008
1 lb stew beef, cubed
1/4 c. flour
1.5 T olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 carrots, cubed
1 turnip, cubed (if you don't have or don't like turnips, use another potato)
2 potatoes, cubed
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 bay leaf
1/2 t salt
1/2 t sugar
1/2 t lemon juice
1/2 t Worcestershire sauce
1/4 t ground black pepper
1/4 t paprika
2 c. lower salt beef broth
Dredge beef in flour and cook in hot oil until browned on all sides. Put all ingredients in crock pot, cover with foil, then add lid and cook on high for approx. 4 hours. Remove bay leaf before serving. If the stew is not as thick as you like dissolve a tablespoon of cornstarch in a tablespoon of cold water and stir to dissolve. Add to stew and mix well. Let stew cook for another few minutes to thicken. Taste for seasoning and adjust as necessary.
Thursday, November 06, 2008
At some point, we talked about what Major League Baseball could do to fight ALS, and I realized that next July 4 will mark the 70th anniversary of Lou Gehrig's famous farewell speech at Yankee Stadium. Since his retirement, more than 600,000 Americans have shared Gehrig's fate, as medical science has made virtually no progress toward finding a cure. Through the years some players and a few teams have occasionally helped raise funds, but Major League Baseball has never taken comprehensive action against ALS. Defeating ALS will require the same type of determination, dedication and drive that Gehrig and Cal Ripken demonstrated when they set superhuman records for consecutive games played. With this in mind, why not make July 4, 2009, ALS-Lou Gehrig Day? Dedicate this grim anniversary to funding research for a cure; every major- and minor-league stadium might project the video of Gehrig's farewell, and teams, players and fans could contribute to this cause. An event of this magnitude has the potential to raise millions, dwarfing the relatively scant sums that ALS walks, rides and similar small-scale efforts have produced.Today, completely by accident, I found out that Curt Shilling has a blog (http://38pitches.com/) and has raised money for ALS (Total Raised for ALS $135,300 - I think this is the 2008 total) so I'm going to write to him too.
So here is what I am asking everyone to do:
1.) Write a note to the team of your choice (major league, minor league, independent league, little league, I don't care as long as it is baseball) asking them to champion creation of "ALS-Lou Gehrig Day" on or around July 4, 2009 and every year thereafter in ballparks around the country.
2.) Ask the team to commit to raising money for ALS on that day from players, coaches, and fans - recommend that they pass out self-sealing envelopes that fans can fill in with credit card info or include cash and drop in boxes around the stadium or take home and mail (teams are already doing this for things like All-Star voting). They can address the mailers to The ALS Association or baseball can set up their own foundation (but going with one already in place makes the most sense to me and donations are likely tax deductible.)
3.) Ask your family, friends, and co-workers who are baseball fans to do the same.
4.) Leave a comment indicating what team you wrote to and follow up with a comment if you get a response.
I don't know anyone personally who has ALS but it's a crappy disease (yes, I know, all diseases are crappy) that shortens lives. I can't begin to explain how it affects the lives of those who have it but if you want to read about what it is like to have ALS you can click here.
Mr. Goldsmith - I wish you the best and I hope for a cure that comes in time to help you.
Tuesday, November 04, 2008
Sunday, October 26, 2008
Friday, October 10, 2008
From the CT decision:
"Interpreting our state constitutional provisions in accordance with firmly established equal protection principles leads inevitably to the conclusion that gay persons are entitled to marry the otherwise qualified same sex partner of their choice," the ruling said.
"To decide otherwise would require us to apply one set of constitutional principles to gay persons and another to all others. The guarantee of equal protection under the law, and our obligation to uphold that command, forbids us from doing so. In accordance with these state constitutional requirements, same sex couples cannot be denied the freedom to marry."
Unfortunately The Wife and I don't live in a state that permits it but wow it makes me happy to read the CT decision.
Thursday, October 02, 2008
Here’s what I want you to do:
1) Copy this list into your blog or journal, including these instructions.
2) Bold all the items you’ve eaten.
3) Cross out any items that you would never consider eating.
4.) Post a link in comments at www.verygoodtaste.co.uk
The VGT Omnivore’s Hundred:
2. Nettle tea
3. Huevos rancheros
4. Steak tartare
6. Black pudding
7. Cheese fondue
10. Baba ghanoush
13. PB&J sandwich
14. Aloo gobi
15. Hot dog from a street cart
17. Black truffle
18. Fruit wine made from something other than grapes
19. Steamed pork buns
20. Pistachio ice cream
Heirloom tomatoes (those of you who know me, know that I do not eat raw tomatoes in any form, yeech.) 22. Fresh wild berries
23. Foie gras
24. Rice and beans
25. Brawn,or head cheese
Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper
27. Dulce de leche
30. Bagna cauda
31. Wasabi peas
32. Clam chowder in a sourdough bowl
33. Salted lassi
35. Root beer float
37. Clotted cream tea
38. Vodka jelly/Jell-O
41. Curried goat
44. Goat’s milk
45. Malt whisky from a bottle worth £60/$120 or more
47. Chicken tikka masala
49. Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut
50. Sea urchin
51. Prickly pear
55. McDonald’s Big Mac Meal
Dirty gin martini
58. Beer above 8% ABV - BRING IT ON!
60. Carob chips
66. Frogs’ legs
67. Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake
69. Fried plantain
Chitterlings, or andouillette
72. Caviar and blini
73. Louche absinthe
74. Gjetost, or brunost
77. Hostess Fruit Pie
79. Lapsang souchong
81. Tom yum
82. Eggs Benedict
84. Tasting menu at a three-Michelin-star restaurant.
85. Kobe beef
90. Criollo chocolate
92. Soft shell crab
93. Rose harissa
95. Mole poblano
96. Bagel and lox
97. Lobster Thermidor
99. Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee
So I've eaten 55 of these things and there are 7 that I would never willingly/knowingly eat. To replace those I will add 7 less usual things that I have eaten: wild boar, dried salted fish ovaries from Sardinia, heart (BLECH), intestine (BLECH), tripe (also BLECH), a variety of sushi (both raw and rolls) and sashimi, and raw mussels.
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
“Sarah Palin is very likable. There’s nothing wrong with liking her. But this isn’t a zany sitcom where a friendly, plucky Everywoman with dangerous ignorance on foreign policy gets to be vice president. Americans don't deserve someone too scared to do a press conference. Fun for a TV show, but running the country doesn't permit second and third takes when you mess up the scene."This is the most intelligent thing I've read about how to get to people who are reacting viscerally to Sarah Palin. Go read the whole thing.
As to progress towards 5k - the plan for the next month is to workout on Mon/Thurs and walk at least 45 minutes W/Sat. I plan to walk on the treadmill on Wednesdays because I am just not a morning person and by the time I get home and have dinner it is too dark :-( to walk outside now. I can walk outside on weekends and the half-mile circuit at the cemetery is a good place to do it. I saved enough Coke Points to get a $100 Nike.com gift card so I am designing a custom pair of shoes at NikeiD.com. I have wide feet so I have a limited number of styles to choose from but I'm having fun. I think I have to go try on a pair of the style I want to get before I actually buy them on the website.
Sunday, September 14, 2008
Monday, August 18, 2008
Bean: Everything ok?
The Wife: Oh - the squirrel is now in the corner with the kitchen sink.
Bean: I think the squirrel is building a home and an office. or a home and a weekend home.
The Wife: I think probably an office and media room. If it has a bigger TV, I'll move in with him. BRB
The Wife: Big crash from basement - think squirrel is unhappy w/his accomodation. Should I remove the cover to the window, or just wait for Erlich
Bean: Remove cover and cut plastic - maybe he'll leave on his own.
Bean: Bill squirrel's agent for damages.
The Wife: no problem - but how will we know if he's left? Then to pay for the trap?
Bean: Make a small cut - if it gets larger we think he went out through window. Then block off again.
Bean: Squirrel is probably late for work. Stayed in all weekend watching sports and eating cheetos.
The Wife: Where did he get the cheetos? I want some!!
Bean: I presume he went shopping on his way home from work.
The Wife: brb - off to remove window cover.
The Wife: ok deed is done.
Bean: What do you think keeps crashing?
The Wife: now, he's napping. The last time it was those wooden shelves, could be anything on the table. Won't know till I'm down there, but don't really want to go down with a loose squirrel.
The Wife: Yes, absolutely.
Bean: Well at least he comes out of the wall occasionally. Even if we do have to trap him. I was beginning to think he had no intention of ever coming out again.
The Wife: Ehrlich just came & set up the trap. The squirrel apparently has been chewing on a wire (under the dining room) - once the squirrel is caught we will need to have the electrician in. Seriously, I think we should consider buying one of those traps then we won't have to pay $200+ each year to catch something. Maybe a Christmas present from your folks! I blocked up the window again because I didn't want him calling his friends & family to join him.
Bean: JC on a raft. I have to go to my meeting.
Bean: I'm back. Any more from our friend in the basement?
The Wife: He's hanging around the fireplace (Emily is watching for it now). Was the JC about what I said, or your meeting?
Bean: The JC was about the squirrel chewing on the wire. He's hanging around the fireplace? He's in the wall over there now?
The Wife: yes. (presumably under the fireplace).
The Wife: I don't know if the passive trap is going to work, but I don't have any better ideas.
Bean: Is there food in it?
The Wife: I think the guy put some sort of squirrel enticement goo in it. I haven't been down there.
Bean: The squirrel has to be getting hungry.
Bean: He hasn't been out in days.
The Wife: He told me where the trap is & that we would hear the squirrel when it was caught (they get very angry) & we should call them whenever it is caught. Or the copper & insulation are filling junk food.
The Wife: Although he has moved away from his "comfort zone."
The Wife: He just jumped over by the kitchen - Emily's still watching the fireplace.
Bean: Emily is slow these days.
The Wife: It seems to be doing laps now.
The Wife: If Emily showed any emotions, she'd be very excited.
Bean: maybe he'll get tired and fall down. Clumsy squirrel.
The Wife: ...and stagger to the trap.
Bean: Yes, exactly.
The Wife: Can squirrels swim?
Bean: I suspect they can, at least for short distances.
UPDATE: It was not a squirrel. It was a GROUNDHOG. Apparently they can climb. Little bastard.
Sunday, August 10, 2008
Pat's Polish Stout
1 can Mr Beer St. Patrick's Irish Stout Beer Mix
1 can Mr Beer Creamy Brown Extract
1.5 oz unsweetened baker's chocolate
1/2 c. brown sugar (packed)
Liquid Stout Yeast
2 gallons spring water
Brew according to the Mocha Cherry Stout recipe on Mr Beer.com (obviously minus the cherries). I plan to let it ferment for 3 weeks then bottle. I'll let it bottle condition for 8 weeks. So it should be ready to drink by Halloween - seems like just the right time for a stout.
Saturday, August 09, 2008
I still need to brew the Chocolate Stout. I think as long as it is ready by Thanksgiving the MIL will forgive me. If I get it in the keg tomorrow we should be ok.
Saturday, July 26, 2008
Friday, July 18, 2008
Sunday, July 13, 2008
The Wife and I made the most of the last 3 days of the vacation. We went to see "Smart People" on Friday at the local art theater (we are members and hadn't used our free passes this year so free movie for us and 2 drinks and a giant tub-o-corn for $5.50.) Yesterday we spent the day with friends, played Wii (first time for me) with their 8- and 11-year-old boys, and ate like kings (homemade empanadas, skirt steak, grilled chicken, and my home-brewed beer). Today we puttered around the yard and I brewed a Cherry Wheat beer. I can bottle it in 3 weeks.
The dog pool was christened today - the dog had a blast. We got her to go into it by throwing one of her toys in and then she discovered that she liked it. She would race around the yard and then hop into the pool on her way past at full speed. It was pretty funny. Now she is pooped and draped over the ottoman.
and the Phillies won and will go into the All-Star break leading the NL East. GO PHILLIES!
Well I can't ignore work email any longer - time to face the music.
Tuesday, July 08, 2008
Today we set up the pool for the dog. Yes, we bought a pool for the dog. We don't want her to go into our pond because it makes her smell horrible (much worse than basic wet dog) so we got her a little wading pool. She doesn't quite know what to make of it - she almost sat down in it but then decided to hop out instead. We hope that tomorrow when the water is a little warmer she'll like it better.
We have coined a new term - F.U.P. It means "fuck you paw." Emily Dickinson Kitty has a little foot shake she does sometimes and it totally looks like the cat version of the finger. We dubbed it the "fuck you paw" but The Wife wants to refer to it as a "F.U.P." so we can use it in public. Now she wants to further clarify it and use the C-F.U.P. or D-F.U.P. to identify which pet is flipping us off.
Friday, June 20, 2008
Today The Wife and I had our cat, Sylvia, euthanized. It's a long, complicated story but suffice to say that we tried everything we could and everything various vets recommended and it was probably past time. Sylvia was generally a quiet cat (unless she was hungry) and even though there is another cat (her sister, Emily Dickinson) and a dog in the house, tonight we feel her absence. There is an unusual stillness in the house. I was outside a few minutes ago and saw the first firefly of the season. Both of these things, seemingly unrelated and small, have convinced me of what I have long belived. Animals have souls. Sylvia's is gone from our house and our lives. I do think pets go to heaven and I like to think that Sylvia has found my grandmother and has settled in with her.
I'm sorry, Syl. I wish there had been another option. I'll miss you greeting me every morning outside the bedroom door and lining up in your spot for your share of the lunch meat when I make my lunch. I'll think of you every time I eat rice pudding. You were a good cat.
Monday, June 09, 2008
Me: Well I think that's up to MaMa K because she will have to dry you off after you've been laying in your pool.
Poochie: MaMa K said it was o.k. because I was eyeing the wading part of the pond & at least in a pool I won't smell quite so icky.
Me: This is true. What size pool would you like?
Poochie: I dpon
Poochie: oops. darn paws.
Poochie: I don't know. I was thinking of a plastic one that I could lay in (like a library lion) and maybe MaMa K could cool off by putting her feet in. Mayby CVS or K-mart has one?
Poochie: Oh & the sides can't be too high, because I need to be able to watch those darn birdies.
Poochie: So, more long than deep.
Me: maybe I can go shopping tomorrow after work.
Sunday, June 08, 2008
Wednesday, June 04, 2008
Friday, May 30, 2008
Saturday, May 24, 2008
Thursday, May 22, 2008
Dear Unsuspecting person:
I am sorry that you noticed the media storage cabinet at the curb and stopped to pick it up. I'm sure you thought "Hey, look. That's a perfectly good media cabinet that would look really nice in my insert room here." I know in US society today people throw away lots of really useful things just because they don't need them anymore. However, that was not the case with that media cabinet. That particular media cabinet is abosolutely soaked in cat pee. I hope you don't have a cat, or a dog that doesn't like cats, or a crawling child, or a functioning olfactory system. You see, a very strange yet very lucky cat lives in the house that recently housed the media storage cabinet. Said cat routinely ignores the litter box for no apparent reason and yet has lived lo these almost 12 years in a selection of homes with carpet and humans with funtioning olfactory systems. The same humans who carried the media storage cabinet to the curb last evening. We had the carpets cleaned yet again and because we now have all of our music loaded on our Ipods our CDs don't need a home in our dining room. We were going to donate the media storage cabinet to a charitable organization that is scheduled to come to our house next week for a pick up. However, when we realized the media cabinet was pee soaked we decided that we should just throw it out. Again, I am sorry that you thought it would look good in your house. I hope you realized it smells before taking it into your house and left if on the nearest curb like the guys in the VW commercial from a few years ago.
Friday, May 09, 2008
Thursday, May 08, 2008
Saturday, April 26, 2008
Friday, April 18, 2008
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
Friday, April 11, 2008
We’ll we’ve nearly made it through the first 4 seasons of the L word on DVD by watching 2-3 episodes a night. The house is in complete chaos because I get home, we have dinner (sometimes while watching an episode), and then we watch as many episodes as we can fit in before bed time. I haven’t even watched a Phillies game yet and the season is 2 weeks old! We should finish season 4 tonight and then be able to start on season 5 (which I have seen all of, but which didn’t make complete sense because I had no idea of the back story) on “On Demand.” I must say, with the exception of some fabulous sex between Tasha and Alice, season 4 has been a rather long dry spell. Season 5 is MUCH better in that respect. I’m glad it’s the weekend.
Thursday, April 10, 2008
This has been quite an interesting week so far.
1.) On Monday, The Wife was flicking a spider into the toilet and simultaneously flushing when she dropped the
2.) On Tuesday, the L word obsession continued and we were going to watch episodes on disc 2, Season 4. We discovered that disc 1, Season 4 was packaged in the sleeve for disc 2 giving us two copies of disc 1 and zero copies of disc 2. This crisis necessitated a call and then a trip to Blockbuster in order for our L word fix. We are both completely enamored of Tina as executive. Wow, she’s hot.
3.) Mad props to Amazon.com. They are shipping us a new set of the L word because, in their words, we received a defective product. They gave us a return authorization label so we just have to package up the old set and return it to them on their nickel.
4.) Also on Tuesday, I was bitching and moaning at work about something and turned to one of my colleagues (in fact, I am the guy’s boss). I said, “blah, blah, blah, God hates me.” He said, “of course God hates you, you’re a lesbian.” I about fell over from laughing at him and my other co-worker who immediately started screaming for HR (the representative of which was blessedly out of the office that day and who sits in the office next to where this statement was uttered.) I assure you, I was not offended by this statement in the least and, in fact, found it very funny (and quite ballsy to say to one’s boss regardless of how good a relationship you have.)
5.) There have been other amusing things that happened this week but I cannot remember them now. I’m sure I’ll remember as soon as I post this.
Tuesday, April 01, 2008
Monday, March 31, 2008
I bought my fig from Stark Brothers (http://www.starkbros.com/access?action=product&productID=0608&collection=0). It looked like a stick when I planted it but I have to keep cutting it back now. If you have an unheated garage or porch you can roll the container in there for the winter. I just wrap mine. I'm going to unwrap it next weekend and see how it looks. Feel free to leave questions in comments and I'll be happy to share my experiences, although they are limited.
Sunday, March 30, 2008
Monday, March 24, 2008
Saturday, March 22, 2008
Thursday, March 20, 2008
Saturday, March 08, 2008
Sunday, March 02, 2008
and everyone who tried it said they liked the home-brewed beer. They seemed surprised that it was tasty.
Monday, February 25, 2008
Saturday, February 23, 2008
Sunday, February 10, 2008
Wednesday, February 06, 2008
Tuesday, February 05, 2008
Sunday, February 03, 2008
We then met a friend (whom we haven't seen since our wedding...in 2001) for drinks and dinner at Becco. The food at Becco was just great. I had "polentina con speck", followed by a ceasar salad (The Wife did say mine was better), and their "sinfonia di pasta." The sinfonia di pasta is a trio of chef-selected pastas that are served table-side and for which refills are available. Last night's selections were mezze rigatoni with pesto and green beans, spicy tomato with fried shrimp over spaghetti (one made without shrimp was available which was good as our dining companion is allergic to shellfish), and mushroom ravioli in a light cream sauce. It was amazing. For NYC the price was surprisingly affordable especially given that we each had a 3-course meal and 2 of 3 had drinks. With tax and tip it was about $45 a person.
Saturday, January 26, 2008
Sunday, January 13, 2008
Tuesday, January 01, 2008
I don't think 2008 will be any less busy than 2007 but I hope to have some more time for my hobbies of cheese making, bread baking, and beer brewing (we'll see how this one works out) and more time to work in the garden. Maybe this will be the year we get edible figs. Hopefully the conditions will be good for the apple trees too.