Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Fogo de Chao



This is the after shot of close to two hours of meaty dining.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Sabering champagne is hard


So it's a good idea to wear protection when you try to do it.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Sith-mas!



That's today, right?

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Thing that could have gone better for my trip:

Plane could have arrived at HNL on time.

No further delays boarding and taking off.

They actually had the food and beverages I wanted to purchase. Condolance bacardi white doesn't cut it.

We could have arrived at ORD for me to make my connection.

The robots could have autorebooked me on a flight that was more than 20 minutes after the one I missed.

Old people would not fear robots.

I wouldn't have been re-rebooked for a flight 24 hours after the one I missed.

I wouldn't have to fly standby.

Flights wouldn't arbitrarily shift from gate F11 to F1.

They wouldn't have to wait for a plane.

Or a crew.

Because the crew's flight had been diverted to Appleton, WI due to ORD being too busy.

The pilot wouldn't go missing for an hour because he was told the flight was cancelled.

We wouldn't need to be de-iced.

Twice.

It wouldn't have taken nearly 24 hours (more than twice the schedule) to get here.
Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

Since vzw sucks, this will never make it through

But here's my plane. It's really super inconvenient for verizon to have shitty intermotrons for my bb on the day I'm travelling. The crazy thing is, I can use my ssh client just fine. It's everything else (web, twitter, aim, google maps, BBm etc.) that won't work.

My hope is that this is just a local thing, and that my internets will work fine when I reach ORD.
Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Seriously, though,

You'd think someone would have spoken up when they were creating the office of "Minister of Fascism," and questioned whether or not it was a good thing they were doing.

James Bond knows his Pokemon

Take that, Xenia Onatop (I hope whoever came up with that name feels bad about it): Charizard always fucking wins.

....


Ok. I finally figured out how to convert an animated gif. Where did my damn video button go on blogger?

Edit: I see, it's only on the "old editor." Whatever.

video

The big red splotch is some artifact from the conversion.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

What are you doing, puppy?



Get out of that cake batter! You're not even an ingredient!

Or a sprinkle!

Friday, December 18, 2009

If the Lord were alive today, what would you give Him this Christmas?


What do you give someone who has everything and more?
He can heal the sick, so don’t give Him an asprin!
He can walk on water: don’t give Him a surfboard!

If the Lord were alive today, what would you give Him this Christmas?
Give Him a twenty dollar gift certificate at Pizza Joe’s!

Merry crust-mas from Pizza Joe’s! Ho ho ho!

What I would have tweeted from Maui, if I had had signal

"I do not know this person, but this is where I am:" [Ok, this one got through.]



Cloudy day in the valley, but up here it's all rainbows.



The dome:



The camera:



The primary:



The mount for the secondary:



I can has authorization!



That dark bit on the horizon is the big island. It turns out it really is big.



All the observatories on Haleakala:


1) There's shit going on out there! 2) This fucker's in the way! 3) Hulk smash! 4) Out of the way, fucker! I've got a party to get to! While sitting!


Thursday, December 17, 2009

Just one



In case it's hard to read, the small print tells you you are purchasing "one penguin."

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Tinkerbell and the Industrial Revolution

Tonight, while flipping through the channels, I got up to get a drink, and returned to find the Tinkerbell movie on the screen. I kept watching, mostly because I somehow assumed I was watching it before I left. Sometimes I'm dumb I guess.

The story is apparently how Tinkerbell singlehandedly pulls the Fairy Kingdom out of the drudgery of manual labor by industrializing the fairy-proletariat.  She does this using a wide selection of "Lost Things," crap from the real world that's washed up in Neverland. She also has help from her fairy friends: Pinky from Pinky and the Brain Fairy (NARF!), Pinky's Fat Friend Fairy, Bitchy Fairy, Mildly Retarded Fairy, and Southern Fairy. There are more, but they're basically Exposition and Background Fairies.

It's actually not too bad, which given the production stories, suggests that John Lasseter actually does have some  magic power that allows him to fix any animation disaster.  However, there do seem to be some serious economic repercussions to Tinkerbell's...um...tinkering.

  • Tinkerbell's industrial revolution is built upon the use of the Lost Things. Unless they invent fairy mines and fairy forges soon, they're going to run out of these mechanical components.  This kind of puts Fairy-topia in a kind of cargo-cult position: they have incredible things, but clearly don't have the technical foundation necessary to develop these things by themselves.
  • Tinkerbell just shrank the time necessary to get ready for spring from a year to a single night. That's a 36400% increase in productivity. Given that I don't recall seeing more than a few dozen fairies at any one time, I think this means that Tink's just put everyone in Fairyland out of work. Why have a bunch of different fairies doing things slowly when one fairy could do all the spring preparations with industry? Based on this totally 100% accurate wikipedia page that kind of productivity increase is roughly the equivalent of taking the 1st century Roman empire, and overnight turning it into the United States, circa 1998. That's definitely not going to create serious social unrest, and the possible reconsideration of whether a strict caste-based absolute monarchy is really the best system.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Everything is a powerlaw. Everything.

Alternate title: How to use Google and Twelve Years of Higher Education to Prove Useless Things.

So this, pointed me to this, which reminded me of a similar experiment that I'd done a year ago.  Khan's fine, but I like LOLcats, so instead of the number of "a"s, I counted "ol"s after the first "l".

Here are the interesting things I noticed from this data.

  1. The current distributions of lols is very similar to the distribution 18 months ago when I first considered the problem.  Other than a few wobbles, this is well described by a N_{ol}^{-3.5} power law.
  2. This distribution suggests that adding two more characters gets boring at a constant factor.
  3. There is a sharp jump in the current distribution at eleven "ol"s.  Beyond this point, the power law has an identical index. This suggests that during the last 18 months, eleven "ol"s became the new cool, but the boredom factor is still the same.
  4. The fall off in the 2008 data occurs at 50 "ol"s, which corresponds to a jump from 99 to 101 characters. I suspect this shows that something somewhere had a limit of 100 characters.  This isn't visible in the new data, because the tail of the eleven-ol cool boost is sufficient to wash out any such drop.
The khan data linked above has a powerlaw index of N_{a}^{-2.5} for the middle section, between the fall off at low N_{a} (probably just typos, and not meme-related), and the drop above 50 (no theories on this one).  Therefore, while adding "a"s, you're less likely to get bored as you are with "ol"s. I don't have a good test meme for larger letter sets, so I can't test that a three letter suffix/infix would drop off as N^{-4.5} or so.

Another interesting test was to look at the quoted phrase "N martini lunch", where the number was written out.

After a quick upswing (I assume while our luncheoneers gain courage from martini's one and two) to the peak at four (a skew point suggesting the proper number of martinis for your lunching), there's a rapid drop with a power law index of -8.  This probably represents the combination of two effects:
  1. The difficulty of drinking that much liquid during a standard lunch.
  2. The unwillingness of people to call something "lunch" when it's clearly devolved into "mid-day binge."

I kind of want gummy bears




  • Fact: gummy bears are delicious.
  • Fact: putting gummy bears in a gummy bear shaped jar makes them twice as delicious.
  • Fact: putting gummy bears in a gummy bear shaped jar in the hotel minibar ensures you will make $6 (+  sales tax and 18% gratuity for the "service attendant")

Sunday, December 13, 2009

I hope she's using good rum


but I'm guessing it's probably just whatever she has around.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Google Chrome

Is kind of halfway between "fucking awesome" and "total fucking shit." I like the fact that it doesn't crash on google-related pages like firefox has taken up as a hobby.  That should kind of be a given. If I'm company X, and I make a product that bursts into flames whenever someone mentions my company, I should probably burn down the factory and kill myself.

The problem is, it kind of ignores everything that's gone before. A specific example is that when I'm typing an address, I want tab to complete that address based on whatever dark necromancy it uses to generate the options.  I'm typing. Theoretically, the mouse is way over there ----->. I don't want to type three characters and then hunt that rodent down to click on the top options. A-S-T- and I should be done. I'm not. Fix that.

Also, clicking on my bookmarks thing makes it look like GC is mugging Firefox to render the menu. You can't be more original?

Another complaint: I tried to move a window, and I clicked poorly, and ended up copying that tab. I'm not sure I lost any tabs, but it was weird and disconcerting.

So:

pros: doesn't go down like a two-dollar hooker
cons: makes you want to shout at it like it's a guy from Germany who clearly doesn't understand what you're saying.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Crap! It's the fuzz!



"No officers, I've never seen those packages before."

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Where can I get one of these?



Because that's brilliant.

You know Olbermann said that with capital letters

So this guy:

is David Wright. I've never heard of him until I caught part of Keith Olbermann's show while flipping through channels.  He works at ABC news, and was part of some story about climate change where he played a clip of the Daily Show that made it look like John Stewart didn't think it was happening.  This made Keith all angry and got him talking about "Journalistic Integrity" and "Somebody Should Be Fired."

Tl;dr: reporter, maybe a dick. I don't know.

In any case, Olbermann missed a far bigger story, which you may be able to detect from that small version of Wright's twitter picture (@abcdavid).  Let's go to the blowup:



He's wearing a wolf t-shirt.

In the interest of fairness, he did do a story about the shirt, pointing out the humorous amazon reviews.  This kind of leaves three options:
  1. He has no concept of sarcasm.
  2. He's some sort of hipster douchebag.
  3. He really, really loves wolves.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

I miss winter



I can't even begin to count the number of times I walked through the snow here.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Charizard will always be cooler than Blastoise.


 I mean, did you see Pokemon movie 3: Secret of Unown (also: Secret of Bad Spelling)? It wasn't Blastoise that flew in out of nowhere to save Ash's moronic ass.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Holy fuck, that burger



I've been following the Burgers on the Edge twitter stream for months now.  Due to me being lazy, I've been meaning to go, but never got around to it. Since I was going to the Safeway it's next to anyway (see previous post for details there), I figured this would be a good chance to visit.  When I took a look at the menu, I knew immediately what I had to try.

The Parisian.

It's the type of thing that looks a lot like the crazy thing they stick on the menu because they don't think anyone's going to get it. Grilled onions? Sure. Caramelized apples? On a burger? That's a bit odd, but why not. Wagyu beef? That's kind of a stretch for just a burger, but probably works. So why is this burger $17?




Probably has something to do with that quarter inch thick slice of foie gras on top. It's been a long time since I've had foie gras, since the place I used to go in Michigan shut down.

Although I can't find any reference to it in the menu, there was also a wonderful wine sauce.  That was a bit heavy, which was really my only complaint. In any case, this was easily one of the best burgers I've ever had, and was totally worth the price.  More things need to have gratuitous foie gras.

To pair with this burger, I decided that it was worth going all out and getting their truffled shoestring fries (with parmesan and parsley).  These didn't really have the truffle taste I remember from other things with truffles, but since I think it's just an application of truffle oil, that's not much of a surprise to me.  These paired perfectly with the burger, since regular fries would probably be overpowered.

I'm going to have to try BotE more in the future. I should try some of the more regular burgers next, since I probably shouldn't be spending $25 everytime I want a burger.

Another day I should have just stayed in bed through

My plan for today involved heading in to the office to sort out some problems so I can make plots tomorrow.  This is somewhat time sensitive, as the plots are for my boss to present at the big panstarrs global team meeting on Tuesday.  I figured I could head in about 3:00, and finish the work up by 6:00, and then head out to grab dinner, and see the meat counter at Safeway that one of my co-workers emailed me about.

Because, see, the only meat counter I've found is at Whole Foods, and that's kind of silly. I want to be able to talk to the meat guy, to peer through the glass case, and select "that filet, no, not that one, back one, and over one to your left."  I'd like to be able to ask the meat counter guy for a specific cut of meat, or for suggestions as to what's good today.  Unfortunately, no one does that anymore, so it's all pre-cut pre-wrapped stuff, with no one around to tell you anything about the stuff you're buying.  We should all mourn the death of the local butchers.

Anyway, when I went down to get in my car, I discovered that it would not start. Nothing. No clicky sounds, no "guh-guh-guh-clunk," nothing.  A check with the multimeter (yes, that was my first thought) showed that the battery had 6.68V. This is clearly not enough to make things go.

Luckily, I have met the guy who parks next to me, so I went to see if he could give me a jump. I have lived in Michigan for too long, and that has caused me to expect everyone to have jumper cables, and for every store in existance to sell them.  Since there is no winter here (Today's low: 65 degrees), none of that is true. A quick trip to Sears to buy cables, we returned to discover that jumping my car results in the "alarm" to sound the horn. Repeatedly.

Google told me that this was not a sign of demons or gremlins, but rather the security feature my owner's manual conveniently forgot.  To stop the horn, I needed to unlock the driver's door. Not start the car with that key, not push any of the buttons on the key, unlock the door. That kills the horn, allowing you to continue your jump-start-ification.  Once the car was on, and running, I discovered that I had left the interior lights on Friday. I'm going to accept 75% responsibility for my car dying, since it would really be convenient if I had interior lights that illuminated when I opened the door, like every other car I've ever seen.

At this point, it was 5:00, and I had a car that ran, but had a dodgy battery.  Since driving around charges, I took a quick trip over H-3 to Kaneohe, and then back.  A quick check at home that the car would start again once I turned it off (it did), and I was able to start my plan of doing work at 6:00.

My original time budget was an hour for each of two tasks, with a buffer hour in case something ran over. This was quite the overestimate, as I was done and gone by 7:00. This allowed me to start my original plan, of heading to eat at Burgers on the Edge, followed by a check of the Safeway meat counter.

After eating, I went to the Safeway (it's only across the parking lot), only to find that the counter closes at 7:00. Oh well. I picked up some stuff for this week, including the bottle of "potato wine" (as Julie calls it) pictured above.

You might notice that there's a security cap. I didn't until I got home.  So, protip for people stealing liquor from the Safeway on Kapahulu: they don't seem to set off any actual security system.  Unfortunately, they are four kinds of hell to get open, even if you have piles of tools at your disposal.  Forty minutes, and numerous scratches later, I had this:



 I guess the lesson here is to make sure they take those things off before you leave the store. Also: turn off interior lights on your car.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

I think I hate weekends more than weekdays now

At least during the week, I have something to do and a reason to wake up in the morning.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Holy crap!



A bucket of puppies!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Dear Reader in Iran,


I hope you enjoyed the pictures of my apartment. Seems a bit odd to me that you'd care about that.

Of course, then I read this article, and now I wonder if you aren't part of the super special agents that are going around tracking down critics of the regime. Again, that seems a bit odd, since I'm pretty sure I'm not going to Iran. Like ever. Turns out that people are a bit hesitant to visit a country run by people who are so terrified of their own citizens, that they have to rig elections and imprison critics.

Hellos, Mr. Frog!

Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

It's kind of a habit now


After a month of posting crap everyday, it now feels like I should still. Today was "work from home because whatever I had last night carried over to this morning." By about noon, I was feeling better, and was able to use the day to finish up almost everything outstanding on my current project for work. I need to do a test tomorrow, which should probably only take the morning (assuming there are no added complications).

I'm also quickly becoming sick of turkey. The brining has helped keep it moist and tasty. Seriously, though, it's been almost a week. I'm looking forward to other dinner components.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Pain

I fell asleep on my couch. I have woken up in horrible pain. Part of that is due to the fact that I seem to have slept with on foot bent 90 degrees, and with both arms in some sort of tangled mess that I think it would be best to simply disconnect them and be done with them entirely.

And now my head hurts to match my sore throat. I am increasingly convinced that I've contracted some new sort of death that is likely to make the rest of the week unpleasant to live through.

I guess on the good side, there is no November 31st. That means for the first time ever, I've completed a full month of mamodonkeytoast with blog posts on each day. I don't believe I win any prizes for this, though.

Monday, November 30, 2009

The Greatest Movie of All Time



Will unfortunately never ever be made. :(

How many days does November have again?

I mean, seriously, this stuff can't actually go on forever, right? Isn't novomongopongoperdita only a single month?

Um...I really don't have anything. Except lots of extra thanksgiving leftovers, none of which I really want except for the turkey.  I'll probably have to bag some of that up for the freezer in the next day or so.

Also, I'm missing a glass. It's the twin of the one that I dropped in the kitchen last month. I have no idea where it could be, or how I could have lost a glass, given that it only has four possible positions.

How about this? Some crazy lady beat a peacock to death. WTF?
  1. Who hates peacocks? Aren't they like fancy chickens that everyone likes because they act dumb and look pretty? I guess my argument is that peacocks are like 90% of people on TV.
  2. Can't you come up with a better way to kill one than to beat it with a baseball bat? That's like what you do when Sammy pawns your TV to buy the nose candy. I don't think peacocks run up drug habits large enough to warrant theft.
  3. And who's going to believe that's actually the peacock's TV? No, pawn shops have standards.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

End of vacation

Thxgvg vacation ends today, which means I need to get back on a work sleep schedule so I can make it in to work tomorrow.  Today's largely been a lazy day, where I sat around and watched tv. I did eat more leftovers, and I've come to the conclusion that the stuffing would probably have been better if I had dried out the bread somewhat before adding it.  I think a quick bake of the crumbs would have helped, or crumbled and let sit out for the night.  That's probably where the extra moisture comes from that is making it so soggy.

My sink is still sucky, but it's not quite as slow as it was thursday.  My thought that it would get better as the whatever clogging the pipe broke down seems to be accurate. I'll be glad to run my dishwasher without concern.

I also realized that this break would have been perfect for me to watch all the Star Wars movies. I've been meaning to do that for a long time now, and a four day weekend would have been the best time to do it.  Oh well, I'm sure I'll have another chance. Sometime. Like in the spring, I guess.

Schwarzwald

"Imagination and memory are but one thing, which for diverse considerations have diverse names."

Saturday, November 28, 2009

I have the top google search

for "what are you doing puppy".

Friday, November 27, 2009

Meh

Woke up. Attempted to fix my sink. Failed. Looked at a bunch of food I made yesterday, and have come to the conclusion that I'm not sure I actually want to eat any of it.

It sucks to be two days into a four day weekend, and realize that you don't really do anything anymore except go to work.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thxgvg

Since I guess we don't use vowels anymore.

I didn't think it would be the case, but I spent six hours cooking today.  I had hoped that doing prep work on Tuesday and Wednesday would have saved me time. Nope.  In addition, my sink...erator? The grindy guy in the sink that sucks at grinding stuff. Mine sucks at grinding stuff, and I think I clogged my kitchen sink. So no sink, no dishwasher, no laundry until I get the maintenance guy to come. Blah.

Anyway, food:

  • Turkey, duh. Alton Brown's "Romancing the Bird" recipe, but the original one, where we make a cool-ass triangular foil turkey bra to keep the cooking even.
  • Mashed potatoes. I tried to use Giada diLaurentis's recipe, where you bake the potatoes after mashing and mixing with pancetta and cheese. It's a bit dry, probably since I tend to make my mashed potatoes dry-ish.
  • Green Bean Casserole. This one I made with my own cream of mushroom soup, but I wasn't convinced I liked that soup when I made it. It carries over the "hrm...I'm not sure I like this" to the casserole.
  • Stuffing. These were still too moist, and the flavors didn't blend as much as I'd hoped.
  • Stuffed mushrooms: I just blitzed the stems, some shallot and garlic, and more of the pancetta, and crammed it in the biggest shrooms I had. Bake bake bake, and they worked pretty well. I might pre-cook the stuffing next time I try these.
  • Gravy. I now fully understand how gravy production works, and it is so painfully obvious, I wonder why I ever bothered with added stock and crap like that. Pull turkey, transfer to resting dish, pour liquids into gravy separator, let separate, dump broth to bowl, add fat to pan, add flour to make roux, when thick, reincorporate broth. It needed nothing, and I think if I had just made turkey, this gravy, and some bread, I would have been perfectly happy with my meal.
  • Bread. So, this is where things started falling apart today.  I was originally going to make sage bread, but didn't feel like getting up this morning when I needed to to make the dough. I justified this by claiming I'd make popovers. But popovers require a muffin tin, and my only one was being used to make stuffin' muffins. My fallback was to just rip off a piece of the Hawaiian bread I had in the fridge. Good enough, and lazy.
I'm not super happy with the sides this year, which is kind of unfortunate, since I spent most of the time working on those. I still have an apple pie, which I plan on having with a bit of sharp cheddar in a few hours, when I start feeling less like I'm about to explode. 

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

I still have 22 minutes

until missing today's Namapokepuppynom time limit, that is.

This evening has been another prep day. I have the turkey in the brine, and an apple pie fighting my under temperature oven.

Time to do a quick check...

Turkey is doing just fine.  My new cooler still has almost original size ice cubes, after two and a half hours.  That's a good sign that it'll be brined successfully.

The pie is still not quite done, even after an extra ten minutes.  I'm going to give it another five, and call it done.  The top crust is firm, it just isn't as toasted as I like.  Oh well. It still smells tasty.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

See?

Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

I'm not kidding

Animated kittens talking about immigration.

Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

Finally something astronomy related

I just looked out my lanai, and saw that Orion was nearly impossible to see.  The reason for this, is that it is so high in the sky, it's mostly blocked by the ceiling.  This is weird, because I know that just a few days ago, @BadAstronomer pointed out how he could just barely see Orion peaking over the horizon.

I think I've just always been around +40 degrees latitude, so suddenly being 20 degrees south of that is weird.  I don't think that this really translates into that much more of the sky (20%? Did I do that math correctly in my head?). Still, since it's mostly by the horizon, it's not that noticeable, I don't think.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Crap, almost forgot

Um...don't really have much. Here's a list of when I'm going to make things:
  • Tuesday night: stuffing and green bean casserole
  • Wednesday night: turkey brine and apple pie
  • Thursday morning: sage bread, roast turkey
  • Thursday early afternoonish: mashed potatoes
  • Thursday post turkey roasting: gravy.
That reminds me, I need to find some wine, and track down a roasting pan. I also should clean my fridge out a bit so I have space to stick things. My turkey is currently defrosting slowly in one of my veggie drawers. It fit, and it's something I can simply wash out afterwards. Plus, I didn't need to shuffle any shelves around. This does mean that my pile of mushrooms (5 types, probably nearing two pounds or so) is sitting outside of a veggie drawer on the shelf. Oh well, they'll get over it.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Pokemon Movie livetweets

Just because.

  • Who else is excited about the new Pokemon movie? (Yes, I know, no one. It's just me. Whatever, I don't care.)  [about 6 hours ago from web]
  • Hmm...someone should have blended their CG with the hand drawn a bit better.  [about 5 hours ago from API]
  • Also, I've seen all the previous movies in this storyline, and it still only makes like 40% sense to me.  [about 5 hours ago from web] 
  • The cosmology of Poke-world is bizarre, yet still easily diagrammed with steampunk quality models.  [about 5 hours ago from API]
  • "Hey, Pikachu! Use thundershock on that god-like pokemon that created the universe!"  [about 5 hours ago from UberTwitter]
  • Time travelling in Pokemon leads to conversations 74x funnier than in regular time travelling stories.  [about 5 hours ago from API]
  • I like how we get the myth at the start of the movie, and then travel back in time, and hear it firsthand from Poke-Moses.  [about 5 hours ago from API]
  • Facepalm. For someone who can read the hearts of Pokemon, you can't tell a bad guy when he's lying right to your stupid face.  [about 4 hours ago from API]
  • That's the second time she's been duped, and I think the third for Arceus. I never realized that time travel is a prank multiplier.  [about 4 hours ago from API]
  • I'm pretty sure that just once Ash would like to end the movie without having to escape a collapsing castle. Oh wait, he's friends with god.  [about 4 hours ago from web] 
  • It's a bit dumb that they fixed the time paradox by making Arceus watch the movie in his head (like in Spaceballs). Still, Pokemon movie.     [about 4 hours ago   from web]

Things I did today

  • Woke up.
  • Watched Pokemon Movie #12: Team Twerp Meets God and Travels Through Time.
  • Made this blog post.

Pika-pi!

You can be sure that when Pikachu says this, he's talking to Ash.

His Japanese name is "Satoshi," which, when translated to Pikachu-ese, is obviously "Pika-pi!"

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Stealing Julie's Idea

  • Stuffed mushrooms (shallots, garlic, and pancetta)
  • Sage bread (from my baking book)
  • Green bean casserole (I'll need to work out the cream sauce, as I'm doing it from scratch)
  • Mashed potatoes (stealing ideas from Giada DiLaurentis's version, by mashing, adding pancetta and parmesan, then baking)
  • Stuffing (I've established my sausages, and lots of shrooms and things)
  • Turkey (AB's brining/roasting method. I also bought a giant cooler for the brine, which probably wasn't the best idea for my small apartment, but it was the same price as tiny ones)
  • Apple pie (since I'm not really a pumpkin pie fan, and it doesn't make sense to make two pies for just me)
I still need to buy a bit more (I want portabellas and pumpernickel for the stuffing, and I need a nice extra sharp cheddar to pair with the pie. Also, I have no wine, so probably a Côtes du Rhône, maybe something to go with dessert), but I think I have the majority of what I need.

Unfortunately, while buying my pile of produce, I had the worst checkout guy in the world.  When you can't identify anything ("what kind of mushrooms are these?" "is this a potato?" "are these granny smith?") and need the girl bagging things to tell you that that slip of paper is a "coupon" and that it "needs to be scanned to work," maybe you should go back to stocking shelves.

Ohs Noes!


Friday, November 20, 2009

Labels!

I finally figured out how to make the labels show up by randomly editing the blog template.  Then, I spent a bit to go back and retroactively tag things.

This commercial makes almost no sense

The youtube info says it's posted by "PringlesAsia" from Singapore. It does get the frustration of having every door broken in Silent Hill down pretty well.  Unfortunately, Pringles make very few appearances in the games.

The random spatula is kind of funny, too.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Fuck you, pizza



Right there on the bottom. It just buckled, and now my oven has cheese burned on the bottom. :(

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Oh, how about this:

Not much today

I don't really have anything today. Normal boring day of writing code.

I did finally get around to resetting the timestamps here to HST from EST. I got tired of having to backdate things after I posted them so they'd show up on the day I wanted.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Hey!


That's my cellphone background!

(So the sad thing is, I had to take this picture with my old cellphone camera, because my regular camera is somewhat broketastic, and needs batteries I don't have. Surprisingly, my old cellphone had 2/3 power bars despite sitting in a box since February. Also, I guess cell phone cameras like to autofocus on the reflections, because of the four I took, this one was the best. Oh well.)

Monday, November 16, 2009

Sausage fest! Day 2!


Second set of sausages, the ones I picked up at Safeway today. The rest is the same as yesterday, although my pancakes were a bit stale. Still, not too bad, especially with the delicious real syrup. I thought up the shotglass idea last night, when I wanted some syrup, but without all the hassle of putting it on something.


As for the sausages, today's set were:

  • Jimmy Dean Sage Sausage. Not bad, although it was a bit overly sweet. I didn't really get the sage flavor, but this would probably be a decent choice for the stuffing.
  • Portugese...um...Hawaiian... Yeah, no idea. It's this sausage that's made here in Hawaii, but is labeled as "Portugese." Wikipedia tells me that it's probably "Linguiça." Anyway, it's almost exactly what I was looking for. It has a hint of spice, and all the garlicky goodness I was hoping for.
I'm thinking that for the actual stuffing, I'll do a mix, probably two parts Portugese to one part JD sage. I think another modification I'll make to the recipe I've used in the past is to convert the mushrooms into a duxelle instead of just adding them in fresh. This should hopefully cut down on the extra liquid in the stuffing.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Sausage Fest!

No, the good type.

I decided that I would make "breakfast," if for no other reason, than so I can taste a variety of sausages to decide which one would work best in a stuffing. To round out the meal, I made hash browns (or home fries, whichever name you want to give them) and pancakes (blueberry, as seen by the rogue berries on my fork). I think this is the first time I've made pancakes in like three years.

As for the sausages, things weren't as good. First, Whole Foods only sells links. This means that there's a required "de-linking" phase of preparation to turn them into proper sausage patties (the one true form for sausage). The other issue was that they only had three types of sausage. To ensure something good, I also bought some of their applewood bacon, and fried up a slice of that. The bacon won the sausage battle, if that says anything. The other contenders:
  • Andouille. This was my winner last year, as it has a good sausage-y flavor, without lots of added issues. Unfortunately, WF andouille has red pepper flakes. I was looking for a smokey/garlic-y flavor, and this comes along with sharp unwanted pepper flavors.
  • Italian. Again, I only had three choices. This one was right out the moment I tasted it. Fennel. Nope, sorry, that's not at all the flavor profile I want in my stuffing.
  • Hot Italian. Pretty much the worst of both worlds. Pepper flakes and fennel. Ick.
So, I'm still left without a sausage decision. The only thing to do now is to hunt down sausages at other grocery stores, and see what they have. Since no one believes in meat counters anymore, that probably means I need to buy pre-wrapped pound packages. Stupid industrialized food production removing the care and wisdom of a local butcher. :(

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Contractual Obligation Post

I guess I'm not really obligated at all, not even by some sort of legal documentation, but I couldn't think up a title. Given that I really didn't do much today, that's not much of a surprise.

Tomorrow, though; Tomorrow I'm going to do this Sunday breakfast thing again. My freezer door was open slightly for most of a day last week, so I had to throw out a lot of stuff that I had in there. That includes my waffles, as the box was disturbingly soggy. Therefore, since I've been getting lots of grief from someone about buying things I could just as easily make, I decided that I would make pancakes. This will also give me a chance to use up my blueberries.

This will also give me a chance to taste a variety of sausages I bought tonight at Whole Foods. My plan is to taste them all, and decide which will be best in the stuffing I'm making for Thanksgiving. I also picked up some nice looking thick bacon, so I'll probably fry that up too. I'm going to try to have pictures for tomorrow's post.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

RelaxBear

While I'm waiting for my work computer to stop sucking and start responding to actual input, I thought I'd get a jump on today's blaggification.

I saw this car yesterday at Ala Moana. I think that more things need to have Relax Bear on them. He is a bear who wears a bear suit.
Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Vacation Over

Just dropped my parents off at the airport, so I guess my vacation is over. It didn't really seem like much of a vacation, given that I got up on average earlier than I would have had it just been another week. I think this weekend will require substantial laziness.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Thanksgiving

I realized today that I should start sitting down to think about a Thanksgiving menu. It's going to only be me, I think, so I have a decent degree of freedom. Unfortunately, that also means that I need to make everything myself. I'm probably going to go with a lazy traditional thing

  • Turkey: most likely the AB brine version, as it's super delicious
  • Stuffing: maybe I'll try some of the various sausages we have here, and see which one would work best.
  • Green Bean Casserole: the cheesy version
  • Mashed Potatoes: I kind of want to do something fancier than just adding roasted garlic, but I'm not sure what
  • Rolls of some sort
  • Punch and Pie
Probably doesn't hurt to start thinking about recipes now, so I can do some test runs.

Iolani Palace

Is the only royal palace on US soil. It was also the first major executive residence with electricity.

It is also moderately hard to find parking for. :(

Monday, November 9, 2009

Monday

Work day, since it was telecon day. Two hour telecon right after the hour-long group meeting.

Guh.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Turtle Bay Resort

Visited this with the parents as part of the North Shore Tour (the North Shore is crap if you don't surf). It's kind of like a safe, family-friendly, boring version of what a vacation hotel should be. I hate Waikiki, but that's because I hate people. It totally offers a far better atmosphere of drunken excess and commercialism that I believe people prefer in their vacation experience.

Tl;dr: Turtle Bay is like the Republican version of Hawaii.

In any case, we were only there for lunch, and lunch is something I'm generally willing to do anywhere, with anyone.

My choice was the "slider trio." Yes, sliders are totally played out, and yes, it's clear that the chef in charge of the restaurant (Ola @ Turtle Bay Resort) hasn't gotten that message yet. Still, given that I'm unlikely to visit more than once (maybe twice. If I was up on the NS again, it's probably the best place to do lunch), I figured it was the best way to sample the selection. The sliders are (color from menu):

  1. "Kalua Pork: Oven Roasted and Smoked with a Guava Barbeque Sauce and Grilled Maui Onions." Other than my own pulled pork, this may be the best fucking pork sandwich I've ever had. This is delicious, and definitely something I'd recommend.
  2. "North Shore Burger with Herb Cream Cheese (made from North Shore Cattle Company All-Natural Beef)." I would have liked to get the "Onions & Mushrooms" the standard version of this gets, but instead I got a slice of (probably) plum tomato (based on the size). I prefer cheese on my burgers, but this didn't need it. The flavor of the meat was remarkable. The tomato was ripe and fresh, and the herb cream cheese offered a nice counterpoint. The meat was a touch small for the bun (probably an ounce or so, pre-cooked, which works to be about a 1-inch diameter by 0.25 inch patty after cooking), which is another reason that "sliders" are terrible ideas to begin with. Why can't we just make cuts off of larger sandwiches (A: because that'd be prohibitively expensive for the restaurant)?
  3. "Soft Shell Crap with Wasabi Soy Aioli." Um. Oh. Ok. Slight review change. I thought this had the lemongrass herb oil, but that was the grilled baby octopus entree I was thinking of having. Well, in any case, the problems with this one were:
  • The crab was clearly over fried. As we've heard a thousand times from Alton Brown, Julia Child, The Pope: frying doesn't make something greasy, as long as the water in the thing you're frying is being extracted. Only after the water is gone is it replaced with the oil from the fryer. This crab was dry and greasy. That kind of ruins the fun of eating something that looks exactly like it did when it was running around.
  • There was nothing to fix this in the sauce. "Wasabi Soy Aioli" apparently means "Pile of bean sprouts and something that has so little flavor you think it's the lemongrass herb oil." I'm fine with the bean sprouts. It adds some texture that helps the sandwich. The sauce, however, is basically a failure. My initial thought was that a lemon/basil aioli would fix this. Both offer a sharp flavor that could fix some significant overcooking of the crab itself. A wasabi/soy aioli that actually had flavor could do so as well. The spice and saltiness would easily do the same thing. Again: the sauce failed the sandwich, making me glad that I had two other very tasty things to enjoy.
Fries were there as well (duh, USA), which had a nice coating of kosher salt, making them a bit saltier than most fries, but salty in a more flavorful way.

I guess my conclusion is: TBR: Ola does most things well, but maybe you should just try that grilled baby octopus if you get a chance, because "Crab Luau Cream"? How can that not be delicious?

PS: This was supposed to post tomorrow, blogger believes that tomorrow is today (proof against: no flying cars), I don't care, because it solves the problem of coming up with stuff tomorrow.

Vacation checklist haiku

Pearl Harbor was first.
Arizona: Boat ride out.
Missouri: Repairs.

Di-a-mond Head next,
Stairs do not make hiking fun.
Stupid Day-star sucks.

Dole Pineapple Farm
(Plantation did not fit there):
Creative history!

North Shore has beaches;
Far too much traffic/bother:
Not worth the effort.

My worst nemesis:
Waikiki, oh Waikiki.
Tsunami come soon.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Apparently scheduling is wonky

I'M POSTING FROM TEH FUTURE!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

This panda


loves recess.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

This is Hello Kitty's


and she will shoot you in the back of your head if you don't come back with all the money. She didn't bring this from Columbia for you to fuck up.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Things that were wrong with that commercial

  1. She is holding a ukulele. It is never played, nor is it in the background music. If Chekhov had a gun, he would shoot the writer.
  2. Her song has unwieldy octave jumps. I think they auto-tuned her to make it work.
  3. There were digital snowflakes in the background. WTF? This is Hawaii.
  4. The only way to get a copy of this new song is in the Christmas Pack of Hawaiian Host chocolates. That's a bizarrely specific marketing strategy.
  5. Her closing statement that we should all support her is accompanied by some sort of weird head movements that don't so much say "pop music star" as "porn star."

Edit

Ok, blogger doesn't like animated gifs. Give me a moment...ok, no clue how to convert an animated gif to something reasonable. Here's how it goes down:

squirrel A walks up to the stuffed toy, and steals a peanut. He sits there on camera and eats it.

squirrel B flies into shot from the right, totally fucking up the stuffed toy's shit. He totally doesn't trust this stuffed impostor.

I'll try again later, once I've sorted out how to make it work.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Nablomopo?


Crap, we're doing magabogoblogomogonamamamramalamadingdonapo again this month, aren't we.

Fuck.

Um...

Here's a picture of a squirrel going absolutely batshit crazy over a stuffed animal. (It's late, and I didn't really do anything today. I had breakfast, it was tasty, I didn't take pictures.)

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Um...what?

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