eruthros: Ivanova from B5 saying "boom boom boom boom" to Londo -- angry icon!! (B5 - Ivanova boom)
... my rage for Verizon knows no bounds. It is CAPSLOCK RAGE, in point of fact.

Query: aren't we supposed to be afraid of communism because it makes everything inefficient? And people don't get services? Or potatoes? Or something?

Because, well, I ain't seeing the benefits of capitalism at the moment. I WILL GO CAPSLOCK HARRY ON VERIZON'S COLLECTIVE ASSES.
eruthros: Delenn from Babylon 5 with a startled expression and the text "omg!" (Default)
*sighs* Man, utilities suck. Apparently Verizon was supposed to tell me, when I signed up for phone service, to be at the apartment on the day that they were going to switch the phone on. And yet they did not. (Also, they came by the day after they told me that they were going to switch the phone on, so I wouldn't have been here anyway.)

So I got a phone call after they left the apartment telling me to reschedule, because they needed to get into my apartment, and I was all "reschedule what? with who?" and the person didn't leave a return phone number and they aren't there on weekends and I finally talked to someone, and he was nice and efficient and voluntarily offered to waive $55 worth of bill for the trouble. The only problem? There aren't any scheduled openings until Friday afternoon. I can't take this slow, low-signal-strength, constantly-disconnecting, stolen wifi until Friday. I will go mad, I tell you. Mad!
eruthros: closeup on apples, text "fruit porn" (fruit porn - apples)
We have a lot of vegetables from our CSA, so it's easy to just make some sort of stir-fry, and that's what we were going to do last night. Tofu, napa cabbage, sweet soy sauce and tamari and toasted sesame oil.

Except, as [ profile] m_shell is cutting cabbage, I turn to her and say, "Hey, we keep not making curry, and you've been wanting curry. We have coconut milk." So she pauses, because cabbage would go into a curry last, and says, "Yes, I want curry, but I don't want to wait for brown rice." So I try to think of things that are faster than brown rice, and I say, "We have couscous, I think. How about that?"

Poking through the cabinet of dry goods results in a consensus on whole grain bulgur wheat. (Partly because I can't find the couscous.) So I start bringing the bulgur to a boil while [ profile] m_shell puts the cabbage to the side and starts chopping onions.

Current state of dinner: yellow coconut milk curry on unflavored bulgur.

I'm sauteing the onions and telling [ profile] m_shell about a particular essay on lotus-eaters that made me want to write speculative fiction, create dust-swept stone cities on alien planets, all because the descriptions of Djerba and of food in said essay were so lush. In fact, I say, even the included recipe for masfouf (sweet date and nut couscous) was richly written. So I fetch the book out of my bag and, still stirring, read the recipe aloud: essence of orange blossom; pillows of couscous strained through the hand until soft and billowing; almonds heated gently, until they are warm and fragrant; faint dustings of cinnamon. And [ profile] m_shell says: you're right, that's an incredibly sensual recipe. And then: Why don't we put some cinnamon in the bulgur?

So I put cinnamon in the bulgur.

And I'm sauteing onions and potatoes (we have a lot of potatoes, and anyway I like potatoes in curry, even with rice) and pondering other vegetables. "Do you want to put anything else in?" I ask. "What else would we add?" [ profile] m_shell asks. "Well, let's see... we have beets, and carrots, and eggplant, and ..." I don't finish the list, because [ profile] m_shell says, "Beets? Beets in curry?" And I say, "I was just listing off vegetables from the CSA. I don't know. Maybe?" And when I turn around [ profile] m_shell is washing beets.

Current state of dinner: cinnamon bulgur and a curry that is now more peach than yellow; it's picking up pink from the beets and beet greens.

Of course, after you've added beets to your yellow curry, there's nothing stopping you from further flights of fancy, so we throw in several tablespoons of cinnamon when we add the coconut milk and tofu. But the flavor still needs more depth, so we add some powdered cumin, to bring out the sweetness. And of course, at this point, it needs extra tamari sauce. And we have to remember to put the cabbage in at the end; after all, it's already chopped. And then, because we're still thinking of the masfouf recipe, [ profile] m_shell says, "What about raisins?" (We don't have dates.) And she pulls out the almonds without asking.

We assemble the curry, if it's still a curry, in bowls: a layer of heavily cinnamoned bulgur and a ladleful of pink-peach curry, topped with a handful of raisins and chopped almonds. The potatoes have soaked up so much color that they look like yams, but the color from the turmeric penetrates further, so when I cut a steaming chunk of potato in half with my fork, it is a deep pink-orange on the outside, lined with a thin edge of bright turmeric yellow and finally the pale yellow of the potato itself.

Result: a sweet and spicy curry. Spicy-bitter cabbage, sweet raisins, richy, crunchy almonds, tofu, and potatoes. And beets, it turns out, meld with curry quite well.

As we're eating dinner, I turn to [ profile] m_shell and say, "You know what would make this better? Next time? Dried apricots in the bulgur."
eruthros: Delenn from Babylon 5 with a startled expression and the text "omg!" (BtVS Tara avatar avatar)
So I was sitting on the sofa, post-brunch, pondering the state of the universe, when suddenly I heard fluttering and thumping. Rather like the sound of an injured bird, in fact, so I headed over to the window to see if a bird had thumped it and landed on the outside part of the air conditioner.

No. In fact, it was a just-out-of-babyhood sparrow between the two windows. Problem: this window is basically decorative; we've never opened the window because, well, huge air conditioning unit and landlord painted inside window shut to, one presumes, prevent us from accidentally dropping said AC on anyone. Problem two: even if we managed to open the inside window (no sure thing), the bird probably would not fly toward us. Problem three: if it did, then we would just have a freaked out bird in the apartment. But the bird was sitting on the AC between the windows, and trying to fly up to get out, when the only space to get outside was actually on either side of the AC below said bird. Recalling the experience of our summer apartment-sitter, I tried getting high up to scare the bird down rather than up. Eventually, this or something else worked (thank heavens, because I was just about to attempt to open the window) and the bird flew free. Free!

WTF, sparrow.
eruthros: Pirates of the Caribbean: a boat in harbor is a safe boat / but that's not what boats are for (PotC - boat in harbor)
... oh my god, I think we're really going to buy this used Prius.

Eeeep. And: eeep.
eruthros: Ivanova from B5 saying "boom boom boom boom" to Londo -- angry icon!! (B5 - Ivanova boom)
I can have all the excitement I need right here at home.

We just baked a lemon cake that was possessed by Satan.

No, really. There's no other explanation. It's a perfectly normal recipe, nothing out of line -- only three eggs and a teaspoon and a half of baking soda, and nothing weird. And yet! We put it in the oven, set the timer and... it volcanoed up and over the sides of the pan in great and vast quantities, splashing down over the electric heating element (yes, we have a very bad oven). And suddenly we could smell smoke. (Should have been a Clue.) And then when I opened the oven to poke a skewer in and see if it was done, I let more oxygen in and... boom! nearly lost my eyebrows. Then there was smoke! (Oh boy, was there smoke!) And there was opening of windows and turning on of fans and leaping around with a towel by a smoke detector and attempting to put out the very exciting fire.

Despite all this ruckus, the half of the lemon cake over the fire turned out exactly perfect. The other half is a wee bit underdone.

This really caps up an exciting Friday evening, as we looked at the many uses of lichens over dinner. (What? It's interesting!) Fascinatingly, lichens removed from the belly of a caribou and then combined with mashed fish eggs seem to be a delicacy in some cultures. I think you have to grow up eating it. Also some of them are used to make beer in the place of hops, reputedly "incredibly intoxicating" or "very bitter." And folks in the Soviet Union during WWII made molases-like things out of others, as the other standard sources were being used by the government.

We sure do have fun of a Friday night, no?
eruthros: X-Files: Mulder in glasses, text "sexier in glasses" (XF - Mulder sexier in glasses)
Geese that attacked me: one. Fortunately, he/she was distracted by a bicyclist a moment later and waddled off after him, all "how dare you enter my territory at speed!" Thank heavens for geese with the short-term memory of goldfish. (He/she did not quite bite the bicyclist's leg, but from his reaction you'd think he/she did.)

Creepy older men who hit on me: two. One of the "gee, you're sure pretty!" variety, which almost makes you want to say "aww shucks" in response. But instead you say kthxbye. And the other of the "heh, heh, want to go to a club with me? we could dance" variety, which makes you want to say "you're an asshole, aren't you?" But instead you say "no thanks bye."

Miles walked: about seven? Here to downtown, via many errandy places and also Kelly drive.

Miles walked with blisters: about four? Just reward, really. I was just thinking "hey, I've skipped the almost mandatory blisters you get with any new pair of tevas." Ha! I have blisters of doom. In weird places. Not the normal new-tevas blister places. *inspects feet warily*

Number of blisters: four. Two per foot. Ball of the foot and side of the pinky toe. Owwwwww. Blisters the size of the moon. Possibly larger than the moon. (Also, randomly: is pinky toe a regionalism? Or is it more common than I think?)

Errands completed: six. Bus tokens, cash, rolls of quarters, shopping for self at Trader Joe's, shopping for an event of [ profile] m_shell's tomorrow at Trader Joes (and I only went four dollars over the student government group's budget for the number of rsvps. Despite buying many moderately healthful snack things.), and a rushed trip to Whole Foods to pick up a gallon of cider, because, see, we bought a gallon this weekend that didn't get bagged for us.

Miles walked with a gallon of juice, two liters of fizzy water, a half gallon of milk, a half gallon of chicken broth, two pounds of hummus, two pounds of baby carrots, and many other heavy foods in my backpack: only one. But it felt like a lot.

Bags the checker filled with my stuff: four.

Bags I filled with my stuff: two, and one of them my backpack.

Buses taken: zero. I was going to walk downtown and bus back, but then [ profile] m_shell came to pick me up instead, yay! Because I was very very blistery by that point and really not looking forward to standing up on the bus.

Kinds of cheese eaten for dinner: only one. But it was a goat cheese on organic whole-wheat sourdough. With a nice organic Braeburn, very crisp. And cocoa almonds. Because I challenge anyone to make it through Trader Joe's without buying unnecessary snack foods. Mmmmm, cocoa almonds. Mmmm, chocolate covered espresso beans. Mmmmm.
eruthros: Delenn from Babylon 5 with a startled expression and the text "omg!" (Default)
I had one of those mornings that makes you feel vaguely as though you should buy a lottery ticket on the way home.

I seem to have turned off the loud alarm in my sleep, see, and so I woke up thirty-five minutes late. (Admittedly, this probably only means I got up twenty-some minutes late, as I'm horrible at getting out of bed in the morning.) And I was panicked and worried I'd miss my bus and generally going "ahhh."

And yet somehow... it worked out. I got out of the house on time and even managed to have breakfast, shower, wash my hair, and find clothes that match (one of the above usually gets skipped if I'm running late). I even had time to check the weather online, skim my friends page, and read [ profile] copperbadge's new short. Score!

Then I got to the bus stop right on time, only to have the driver on a different bus route stick his head out the door and inform us that all the buses that came down the expressway were delayed 10-15 minutes. Score! See, I was half-asleep and only had two dollars, and that's enough for lunch, but Philadelphia is much less of a cashless economy than SC or the Bay Area, so I don't feel comfortable without at least a little cash. So I had time to dart to the ATM, get some cash, and stop at the cafe for a blended mocha to wake me up AND combat the heat. And also I sorta forgot to drink anything with breakfast. And I darted back to the bus stop ... and only had to wait a minute for my bus. Score!

The bus driver told me that that his was probably the last bus to come on the route for the next two hours -- a gauge broke in the Queen Lane Reservoir, and a tremendously wet mudslide was now blocking all but one lane of traffic on the Expressway. (They still haven't cleaned it up --it's so wet it's making life very hard for them.) He'd just barely made it out of the gridlock, so he was a mere 10 minutes late, and the buses behind him would probably be delayed an hour. So I was damn glad I made it onto that bus despite waking up so late. Score!

And then I got off the bus right next to a pair of really mellow bushbunnies chomping on the grass underneath a bush. Absolutely adorable, of course, since bushbunnies are barely a handspan across, with really active ears. Bushbunnies make any day better. *g*

And just as I got to the office, I remembered that my boss AND my boss's boss are in Europe for a conference ... for the rest of the week and next week. Score!

So all in all, I'm in remarkably good mood for a day that started with thirty seconds of total panic. Everything just seemed to work out. Aren't days like that wonderful?
eruthros: Norrington and Governor Swann from PotC, captioned "courtly man-love" (PotC - Norrington Swann courtly man-love)
Really, I'm impossibly codependent. I'm sitting here going "yes, yes, yes, but when will it be back?"

That's right, my laptop is In The Shop. Metaphorically speaking, of course, as it's more likely In Transit or On An Airplane or Dropped in a Vat of Boiling Acid Never To See Human Hands Again or something similar. I have crucial data backed up, of course, but still... laptop! Laptop not here! Laptop gone! And someone else is going to touch it! Clearly this is a horror that cannot be accepted.

Sadly, I must put up with it, as the connection of the AC adapter to the laptop itself was what is politely referred to as "loose." Meaning "sometimes I could maybe get power if I wiggled the plug and then held it right. there." And the battery only held a charge for 15 minutes. Between the two ... well. It was getting very frustrating. And I am a reasonable person. Really. So I took my laptop out of its safe case and gave it to some weird kid who wasn't even sure how to plug it in. And now it's gone.


And at work today, similar computer stuff going on. I have a terminal, see, not a real computer, so I can connect to a "desktop" via citrix or to accounting software via telnet. And I got in this morning to find that -- surprise suprise! -- neither connection was working. Helpdesk stories )

Oh, yes, computers are the wave of the future, whoo boy. I can see them improving my work ethic e'en as we speak.


At least my very productive work day left me enough time to bookmark one of my favorite quotes from Small Gods, one that really says something about PTerry to me.Pratchetty goodness )

Actually, Small Gods is the first first Pratchett I ever read. Loaned to me by [ profile] copperbadge. In return, I believe, for my copy of The League of Frightened Men, the second Nero Wolfe book, which I feel obligated to point out I never got back. *clears throat* A-hem.

And, okay, so there were like ten DW books before it, but SG came out in 1992. I was eleven. I think I'm doing pretty good in that I'd read every DW book before they were all published in the States. (Thanks for the loans, [ profile] copperbadge; really, it's okay, you can keep the Rex Stout.) I feel comfortable in my fannishness. *g*


In other Random News, that being all I'm doing today, Robert Heinlein's widow donated his personal library, including letters and manuscripts, to UCSC. And also funded a position to do research and organizing. How's that for weird?


Mar. 15th, 2004 08:32 am
eruthros: Delenn from Babylon 5 with a startled expression and the text "omg!" (BtVS cheeseman nonsense)
So I've finished everything I have to do today at work. No-one can come up with anything more for me to do.

It's 8:30. I got in at 8:00, had a bagel for breakfast, and read my friends page before starting work.

The mind boggles. Why do they need a temp again?


eruthros: Delenn from Babylon 5 with a startled expression and the text "omg!" (Default)

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