Tuesday, February 28, 2012


Tonight I invented a pasta sauce. It was mostly red wine and all of the vaguely Italian spices I inherited from my friend who moved away the same weekend I moved here. That would be the last weekend of July, 2011. Which partially explains why, when I say "all" of the spices, I don't just mean "some of each" of the spices.

Goodbye, ancient paprika, oregano, basil, and nutmeg! You seem to have done more to texture my sauce than to flavor it, but at least you have given me an excuse to go back to Penzey's and spend basically all of my food budget there.

The next phase of my use-all-the-old-spices game will be Mexican food. I'm imagining something black bean-ish, with vast quantities of epazote, cumin, and coriander. And cocoa. That should use up everything except the dill...

Monday, February 27, 2012

They'll none of them be missed

In my current occupation, I am required to be a recipient on several email lists. As far as I can currently recall, I am on a departmental graduate student list, a departmental dissertators list, two lists from other departments I am not in, the Society for American Music list, the LAGLC donor list, the Vote for Equality volunteer list, at least half a dozen different UAW 2865 lists, Change.org, MoveOn.org, the list for my family summercamp, my fraternity alumni list, and the list of people who get invited to my friend's place for dinner on Wednesdays. Some of these are lists that don't permit list-wide discussions (LAGLC, VFE, Change, Move On), and are basically fine. Some others have only excellent discussions about food. Okay, that's only one list.

I think I will attempt, once I have finished with school, to find a job that does not require me to be on any lists. I have decided that I will only be accessible by email on an individual basis unless I am contractually required to be on a list. Plus the summercamp and fraternity lists, which I subscribe to by choice and which rarely receive emails at all.

The rest of them are gone as soon as I am reasonably able to be shed of them. You want to have a formal discussion with me? Email me directly. You want to have a formal discussion with me and some other people? Email me directly and I'll schedule an in-person meeting or a Skype call. You want to have a pissing contest and force me to watch? Invite me to attend in person and I will gladly piss on you.

Alternative plan: all email list discussions must be about Dungeons and Dragons, Star Trek, or musicals. If I have to be on a list, I will derail every single thread with an email about one or all of these acceptable topics.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

I made a meme

So this meme that I accidentally invented over on Google+ a while ago has probably run its course in being adopted by about three people in comments over there, but after I stumbled into it, I never actually did it myself, so here goes.

When I type the letter "a" into my Firefox address bar, I am prompted to go to Apple.com.
B: Google Books
C: hulu.com/the-colbert-report (It starts with h, but c figures prominently in the title.)
D: Google Docs
E: facebook.com/FansofMuMo (Okay, this one confuses me. The event takes place at Eleven, so I guess that's it?)
F: Facebook
G: Gmail
H: hulu.com/the-daily-show-with-john-stewart
I: IMDB (For a long time this took me directly to the IMDB page for Maude, but I guess I've diversified my browsing lately.)
J: youtube.com/watch?v=TJjAVPQ-MTQ ("The Man That Got Away - Judy Garland - A Star Is Born - Multiple Takes." The J would be for Judy, I assume.)
K: katehphoto.com/Weddings/Stephanie-and-Lindsay/19017695_rLtSGK#!i=1505755840&k=dTqnCtQ (photos of a wedding I performed!)
L: LA Times
M: mail.ucla.edu
N: nifty.org (Shut up. I read dumb erotic stories, okay? They're better than the LA Times, so judge me for that one instead.)
O: hulu.com/the-daily-show-with-john-stewart (A repeat; I guess I don't go to sites that start with o.)
P: Google Plus
Q: google.com/reader/view/#stream/user%2F14401738787100415633%2Flabel%2FQueer (my Google Reader "Queer" folder)
R: Google Reader
S: superherofan.blogspot.com (Pictures of cute guys in scifi/fantasy/horror shows!)
T: Twitter
U: UAW2865.org
V: VintageEnoteca.com
W: wizards.com/dnd/tools.aspx (Dungeons and Dragons online tools. For the tabletop gaming nerd who also is a computer nerd. This one was the thing that started the meme, when I pointed out that having this not prompt me to go to Wikipedia was a nerd achievement.)
X: XTube (my boyfriend is 3,000 miles away, okay?)
Y: YouTube
Z: youtube.com/watch?v=dtJSLZnKCv0 ("Liza Minnelli - Ring Them Bells." I love that Firefox knows that it's from Liza with a Z!)

If anybody wants to divulge their browser alphabet in the comments, feel free! Mine change somewhat regularly, so I may eventually post an update, if for no other reason than to send folks to an awesome new site I've discovered in the meantime.

I have to say, I'm a bit creeped out that ten of the twenty-six are owned by Google. As is this site.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Life offline

Hi, the internet. Sorry I haven't written in a while. I kind of fell off of all of my healthy routines for the last two weeks. Turns out that writing on you is part of my healthy routine. Who knew?

As of this morning, healthy routines are back! I had a lovely, rejuvenating weekend in Boston with my boyfriend, caught up with some wonderful old friends, saw my dad and my sister, met some new friends, and got a new hat. Thanks for the hat, boyfriend! I also ate way too much delicious food. Bostonian vegetarians, I recommend Veggie Galaxy! Space-themed fifties-ish diner that is all vegetarian and has lots of vegan options! As the Mysterious X put it when I sent her photos, "in the actual 1950s, the only people eating vegetarian food would have been COMMUNISTS."

Technically, I should be recommending it to Cantabridgian vegetarians, but I figure Bostonian ones can cross the river.

I also took the boyfriend to Harvest for late birthday/slightly less late Valentine's Day dinner. It may win life in the "side dishes that most exceeded expectations" category. Damn good roasted root vegetables over farro risotto and also smoked Gouda mac and cheese.

As part of my get-life-back-on-track weekend, I ignored almost all of the emails I got for three days. That was even better than the food—and you know how much I love to eat. Getting back into the electronic swing of things isn't fun, but it's necessary in my various jobs. However, I have decided something about listservs, Twitter, blogs, Facebook, Google+, LiveJournal, and any other constant information drip service I subscribe to but have forgotten. For the foreseeable future, if I am disconnected from my drip for any period of time, I am going to pretty much skip that dose and just pick up where it left off and assume the intervening flow is expendable.

This is a fairly uncontroversial position, common to almost everybody I know, but it's hard for me. I suffer from what my friend Sally (real name; too tired for nicknames) taught me is called FMS: Fear of Missing Something. FMS means that I want to make sure nobody told a really funny joke while I wasn't listening, or came out of the closet as I blinked, or got a job when I was in Boston. FMS means I want to get up earlier and stay up later than everyone else in the world, just so they can't do something awesome without me. FMS means the Internet is highly addictive to me; there is always, always, someone doing Something that, if I'm not careful, I might Miss.

(Relatedly, FMS is why I love New York.)

For now, I'm going to feed the hedgehog and go to bed. You all can get by without me for the rest of the night. I'll see you when I see you, and hopefully it won't be another two weeks before I come back to the blog. If it is, look for me in the real world, trying to move slowly and just pay attention to the small portion of Something that is happening here. And in DC. And in NY. And in SF. And. And. And...

Monday, February 6, 2012

Cake or death?

I made a cake this weekend that was so large it has already fed a party of six, a party of four, and a party of two and is still nearly 50% of it's initial size. I have eaten five slices of it myself, as part of each of the parties listed, and I feel ill. The usual battle between tongue and stomach was joined on Saturday night and, as usual, tongue won and caused me to eat more than stomach wanted.

One result of too much cake is a total void of energy. So little energy that even though I found out a day ago that Eddie Izzard is doing two shows at the Largo at the Coronet this week, I didn't buy tickets. I just felt too tired to stay up late enough for Izzard on a week night. And too tired to go to the gym this morning. And too tired to wash the cake dishes. And too tired to revise dissertation chapter.

Tonight I will muster up enough energy to grade a few student assignments. Tomorrow I will not eat any more cake. Then I will have enough vitality to go to yoga, revise and expand the chapter, do laundry, and cook a real (non-sugar-based) meal. Accomplishing those tasks will make tomorrow officially a Good Day.

For those who are curious, the cake in question was the Grand Marnier Chocolate Mousse Cake from the Frog Commissary Cookbook, and it is worth the ridiculous amount of effort, time, money, and egg it takes. If you are attempting it and wants tips on how not to make the genoise, I am happy to help you learn from my mistakes!