yrmencyn: (food)
Not a bad day, overall!  Yesterday I tried to break my foot off while helping with the Actors' Theatre strike.  I slipped on a stair, fell, caught my left toe, and basically super-duper-mega-hyperextended my ankle.  I was totally not ok yesterday, but this morning I was feeling better (if still pretty gimpy), and this evening I'm feeling almost whole (even if my ankle still looks more like a cankle).

I spent about 2.5 hours fixing a friend's computer today... it had Unprotected Computer Syndrome (i.e. lots of random crap), but the straw that broke the camel's back was the Windows Police PRO virus/fake anti-spyware program.  Annoying, but I felt accomplished when I was done (even though it definitely took longer than a professional would have).

J and I went out to the Dublin Farmers' Market this evening to grab some tomatoes and fruit.  There was something weird going on, and there was no market to be found, just a couple producers packing up in not-the-usual-place.  I mourn the lack of tomatoes, but not much.  Why?

Banana Leaf.

You know, the amazing vegetarian South Indian restaurant on Bethel?  Yeah, we went there en route on a whim.  But here was the thing: though they had the usual lassis, chaats, and dosai, their buffet?  Gujarati.  GUJARATI!  I have never eaten western Indian cuisine, and it was absolutely amazing.  They're keeping the Gujarati menu through the 13th, and you should go.  Hell, I should go again.  Banana Leaf.  816 Bethel Rd., in the back-left of the shopping center at the northwest corner of Bethel and Olentangy River Rd.  http://www.bananaleafofcolumbus.com

And I made a fritatta out of the braised pork this midday.  I was pretty pleased at the time, though now it pales in comparison to the dinner :)
Pork frittata with salsa
Frittata of salsa-braised pork, peppers, onions, Blue Jacket Creamery Ludlow cheese.  With salsa amarilla adapted from Lisa Fain's recipe.
yrmencyn: (food)
Been a while since I posted any foodporn, eh?  Here goes. 

A while back, I made some salsa de chile morita -- well, actually I made it with chipotles per the described substitution, but who's counting?  Problem was, I used some heirloom tomatillos that were bred for sweetness.  That's great and all, but it meant that instead of being a nice, bright, acid salsa, I ended up with a salsa that was WAY too sweet to eat on chips (at least for my taste). 

Rather than throw it out, I made some braised pork with it.

recipe, and then a recipe for what to do with it )
yrmencyn: (qc - drunk)
The last week or so has been all about celebration, really: good, but bittersweet.  My parents and grandparents were both in town for Epilog, which was a resounding success.  (And it was great to have Jess and Jeff in attendance -- thanks guys!)  I really love reading, so it was good to be able to do that.  And to be able to get some pictures of Jarod and I in nice clothes -- I'll upload some when I have a chance!

etc. )

Now I just have to get a job!  I have an application in to Arts & Sciences Advising at OSU, and I'll be submitting a couple more to various depts at OSU tomorrow, as well as starting my search for non-OSU positions.  So... keep me in your prayers/thoughts?

And soon, San Diego.  Which reminds me: anybody available for airport runs this Saturday morning and next Sunday (the 21st) morning?  Or some occasional cat-sitting in between (Chewy will be kenneled, but Phoebs will be around)?

Snippets

Mar. 7th, 2009 11:02 pm
yrmencyn: (Default)
Slightly too much alcohol for conversation = WAY too much alcohol for making coherent statements on student papers.

I made roast beef poboys with debris gravy on homemade Louisiana-style French bread for dinner.  The meat was perfect; the bread was actually quite good for a classic french bread, but a little too stiff for NOLA.  Still, delicious.  Pity my camera has gone AWOL.

I'm in a musical.  Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, March 20 and 21, Tix 25-30 for adults depending on section.  http://www.cgmc.com

Lávash Café had a special on okra and tomato stew today.  It was fantabulous.

I'm completely fucking swamped with work.  My current mild inebriation is less than conducive to work.  This is definitely an error in judgment.

Did I mention the vast win of the roast beef?  Seriously.

Also, Thurn's souse is so many kinds of amazing I can't describe, even if the Facebookers seem to think the mere concept is gross.  They are, obviously, wrong.

Also also, the CGMC people are WAY more active on FB than most of my other friends.  A little bit of an adjustment.

Also cubed, if you're waiting for your roast beast to finish, a snack-sandwich of buttered toast, whole-grain mustard, sweet relish, and smoked turkey is divine.

Tidbits

Sep. 30th, 2008 09:49 pm
yrmencyn: (bananas)
Little bits of info.

I've been spending a lot of time away from my computer, which is unusual for me.  But I think it's also good for me.  One side-effect is that, though I'm reading LJ, I'm not posting.  Sorry.

My Chacos broke at MiRF -- the footbed of the left sandal split almost all the way through -- and I just got a brand spanking new pair in the mail yesterday, 100% free.  They really do mean it about that lifetime warranty.  And hey, even though my color of strap has been discontinued, they must have had some lying around, because the straps are obviously new, but still in my color.  Yay!  I am free of the tyranny of socks (for another couple of weeks, at least, before it gets cold).

Meg, Brian, and I did end up going to the shrimp festival, which was hilariously tiny.  But we had a lot of fun finding it, eating fish and shrimp, listening to over-earnest Christian rock from a little stage, petting a sturgeon, hand-picking shrimp out of the world's largest cooler, and also picking up some frozen trout fillets, which were quite reasonable.  Oh, and smoked salmon spread for them (how was it, anyway?).  And then a couple days later we had a shrimp-beheading party (they freeze better without their heads).  Never fear: the heads are separate in the freezer, and will become stock.

I seem to have developed a huge crush on one of the farmers/boothies (unclear) at the farmers' market.  And while he does ping my gaydar, I'm honestly not sure if that's because I'm actually getting that reading, or because I want to get that reading.  Oh, wish fulfillment.  Hilarious.

Speaking of said guy, he sold me something like 30# of roma tomato seconds for 15$ two weeks ago.  I made a batch of crushed tomatoes so large that it wouldn't fit in my stockpot, and I had to clean out a Rubbermaid tub to use as a container first for quartered tomatoes and then for the strained product.  I now have 13 qt. of crushed tomatoes in the chest freezer.  Ridiculous.

Fall is officially here.  Amanda and I went on a spree Saturday night and used a pie pumpkin to make both pumpkin pie and pumpkin bread, then used a defrosted pack of ground venison (thanks, Ike) and a butternut squash to make a butternut and venison rice bake.  And some toasted pumpkin seeds.  And pie crust cookies.  It was a bit much :)

The quarter started.  I'm doing well.  More on that later.

Other things, too, I'm sure.
yrmencyn: (food)
Oh. My. God.  I didn't even know that there were shrimp farms in Ohio, though I'm not surprised now that I think about it.  Freshwater Farms of Ohio is having its annual Fish & Shrimp Festival tomorrow and Sunday to coincide with the shrimp harvest.  I want to go and buy fresh shrimp, the better to freeze them and eat them all year.  Who's with me?

I want to be clear: I'm dead serious.  It's in Urbana, only a little more than an hour away.  Now that you can get ice again, I'll just fill up the magical ice chest of cold-holding +5 and we can take back all the shrimp in the world.  And fresh trout.  And you can buy a T-shirt.  And it's free admission to the festival.  Who's coming?
yrmencyn: (food)
Watching Bridget Jones' Diary with [livejournal.com profile] talyr.

Bridget: ...my most successful relationship will be with a bottle of wine.
Mike and Tal:  *clink glasses*

Mike, eating a tasty goat gouda and drinking aforementioned wine: I'm afraid I'm going to eat this whole half-pound of cheese.
Tal: *shrugs agreement*
Mike: More cheese?
Tal: Yes, please!
yrmencyn: (Default)
Silver lining?  No one is allowed to judge me on amount or kind of food I eat.  I need sustenance!  I'm eating for two!  (Me + alien organism trying to consume my body.)  So if I feel like eating leftover rice mixed with leftover spaghetti sauce, which constitutes my third large meal of the day, even though I usually only eat twice a day?  Oh, and I slept for, like three hours this afternoon and I'm about to sleep again?  Whatever, I'm sick.  It's like being pregnant, only without, you know, the promise of new life.
yrmencyn: (bananas)
Well.  Jeez.  It's been almost a week since I wrote anything here, has it?  Oy.  Let's see.  I spent a lot of time in the last week watching the Democratic National Convention, which was mostly boring with brief interruption of stirring/exciting (I actually haven't yet watched Obama's speech; it's DVR'd).  I don't know if I'll be watching the RNC.  On the one hand I kind of want to, just to know what's going on (and to see if/how Hurricane Gustav affects their discourse), but on the other hand I think I might try to rip my eyes out and puncture my eardrums.  It's not that the Democrats don't say ridiculous, out-of-context, entirely unfair things about the Republicans, it's just that, uh, I tend to agree more with Democratic rhetoric.  On the third hand, I really do want to see this out-of-nowhere woman that McCain has chosen as his VP.

Anyway.  I didn't see the Obama speech because I went with some members of the New Things Club to Cocktails at the Conservatory.  The Franklin Park Conservatory has started this new thing where they open up the rooftop gardens on Thursday nights.  Wine, beer, cocktails, hors d'oeuvres.  Drinks are pretty reasonable, and there's no cover.  All in all it was a nice change of pace to stand around in the cool evening, watching as the sun set and "Light Raiment" (James Turrell's changing-colors light installation in the Conservatory's glass roofs) powered on.  They're going to keep doing these events through the end of October; I suspect I might end up back there.

There was a whole debacle with post-cocktail noshing, wherein only half of us ended up at Tip Top, but that did lead to a magnificent moment wherein David knocked over a large water glass, and we all watched, immobile, as a good pint of water sluiced across the table and into Lauren's lap.  Because really, what is there to do except accept your watery fate?

I spent Friday with [livejournal.com profile] moomoogal87, who was up from Louisiana visiting a grad program here at OSU.  We did lots of driving around and talking, doing our best to reconnect.  It's so much more convenient to have personal conversations at a coffee shop than in whispers at the end of the hall, trying not to wake up the [young] Session A campers or be overhead by the [teenage] Session B campers.  We also spent some time hacking away at half-frozen ham, andouille, and vegetables the better to make a nice big pot of red beans and rice, which I'm pleased to say was mostly consumed by about 6 people (of course, there were still probably 5 cups of beans left -- a pound of beans makes a BIG pot).

On Saturday I sat around in Mac's ignoring OSU's ritual slaughter of Youngstown State before retiring to Jess and Jen's for a viewing of Divorzio all'italiana an Italian film from the 60s that was... eh?  It was ok?  It had its moments.  The baroness was extremely annoying (and yes, she was supposed to be, but good GOD).

Finally, yesterday I went to Kevin's brother's wedding in Dayton.  It was really good to see John and Erin again -- their wedding was simple and sweet (it reminded me a lot of rosepurr/thunderstd's and purple_phys/tbec's), and I was glad to be able to celebrate their love along with their friends and family.  Erin made me promise to stay in touch, and I hope I manage to.

And now here it is Labor Day, and I need to do laundry.  Unfortunately my washer's been broken for a couple weeks now, so I guess it's time to schlepp my clothes across the alley to Elisa and Francis' place.  They're out of town, but I need to water their plant anyway.  Might as well abuse my laundry access at the same time :)

------------------

On a more serious note, I'm worried about all of you down in Louisiana.  I'm glad to see that Gustav has decreased in strength, but it's still a good-sized storm, and it's coming in at a totally bizarre angle.  At least it trended a little more west; at one point the projected path showed the distinct possibility that the eye could go right through New Orleans and manage to clip both BTR and Lafayette (like I said, bizarre angle).  So, I guess, be safe?  It's a little late to be getting to higher ground (and hell, there's a good chance you won't see this until after the storm's gone through, if at all), but I hope you're all well.  You're in my thoughts and prayers.
yrmencyn: (food)
I swear my days are slipping away from me.  I'm sitting here trying to figure out what I've done in the last couple of days, and I feel as if I'm missing chunks of time.  Course, I may have slept late for a while, so there's that.  I do know that I went out for drinks with a number of creative writers on Thursday night, and by drinks I mean 'a drink,' since (a) it was 10% ABV (b) it was $8 (c) I'm old.  The Piraat beer at Surly Girl is tasty, though, I'll say.  And it was really good to see those folks, since many of them I haven't seen since June.

And then Friday morning disappears into the mists.  But on Friday afternoon, I headed down to Thurn's Specialty Meats.  Y'all, I've been meaning to head down to Thurn's for a long damn time.  And it's well past time I did so, since I bought 2.5 pounds of the most beautiful andouille sausage, and it was only $12.40.  Love it.  I'll be telling you about it.  I already used some in a breakfast thing, and it was delicious.  Red beans and rice, here I come.

Anyway, Friday night was a going away party for Nick and Tania, two of my friends from way back when I lived with Kyle sophomore year.  They're headed off to New York, and I feel a little bad.  I fell out of touch with that whole group of people, and right as I'm getting back in touch a couple are leaving!  But hey, at least I made it there.  It was an elaborate ruse: fake reservations at the Columbus Fish Market, flimsy excuse to go drop things off at the party location, etc.  They were very surprised :)  And hey -- potluck! 

More rambling and food photos follow )

---------

On a totally unrelated note, I am officially a HUGE Valentina Hasan fan.  I say this without sarcasm.  She's got moxie.
yrmencyn: (qc - drunk)
Well, the rest of the vacation went well.  Despite the fact that I definitely left Nacogdoches a whole hour late due to a sudden inability to do travel math (there was, to be fair, a branching decision tree that I accidentally clambered out onto the wrong branch of), I wasn't overly late to dinner with the CBC folk.  It was good to see people, to drink margaritas, to eat grilled oyster tacos (I know!), to play Phase 10.  Well, maybe except for the Phase 10.  I think that game would be better as, like, Phase 8, but that's neither here nor there.

I eventually headed out to BR, did not die on the Basin Bridge (Mike vs. the Atchafalaya Basin Bridge, still undefeated!), and ended up going out for a pitcher of Abita and a big basket of chips and queso with Erin at Zippy's.  Not that it started out that way -- Mellow Mushroom and Chelsea's both proved unreliable for various reasons -- but it was really a good place to end up.  Quiet, chill, well-lit, housemade chips.  Abita pitchers.  Need I say more?

At this point my memory goes off the rails a bit.  I know I did something with the girls involving Highland Coffees, but I suspect we mostly just hung out?  I do know that I had dinner with [livejournal.com profile] groovy2382 at Parrain's, which was predictably wonderful.  I'll have to make some boudin with one of the magical things that came back from the trip with me (all in good time, Eager Beavers), because otherwise I'll have to wait until at least December for boudin balls.  And I should really learn to deal with fish more, because that barbequed black drum (my favorite thing on the menu) is just too good.  And of course it was good to talk with A, see how she's doing, play with her cat.  And then home for more Olympics!

Sunday was yet more hangouts, first with Mandi and Erin at Hello Sushi on Highland for the obligatory sushi gorge, then at the old house with the now-married Shane and Rebecca.  I KNOW.  Madness.  I've really got to be in better touch with them (and with everybody) -- I miss our long conversations around the big dining room table.

And then Monday I got up reasonably early to drive to New Orleans the better to come back home.  Ah, right: funny thing happened.  I needed coffee something fierce, and I was forced to drive through a Starbucks (because there wasn't any way I was going to drive away from my destination, in rush-hour traffic, to go to Highland Coffees, no matter how much I love them).  I've learned from past adventures in road tripping that the proper way to get a caféau lait at Starbucks is, apparently, to order a Misto.  Which... what the fuck, but hélas.  Anyway, I pulled up and placed my order, and when I got the drink the girl in the window said, "Where are you from?"  I told her I was from Ohio at the moment, and she said "I thought so!  I'm from up north, and we say Misto up there, but they say café au lait down here!"  *facepalm*

Anyway, obviously made it home alright, despite delays in DFW.  And I brought things back!
Stuff from down South
6# Camellia red beans
2# Nacogdoches honey
96 family-size Luzianne tea bags
1 antique meat grinder, purchased by my parents at an antique shop for $8
(I just realized I forgot to bring home Café du Monde coffee.  Bollocks.)

---------------------

On a totally different note, I actually had a good experience at Student Health today.  I've been meaning to schedule an appt with a local glaucoma specialist, since I'm far overdue for my yearly checkup, so I did that.  But for insurance purposes, I have to have a referral from primary, so I scheduled an appt with the Optometry segment of the Student Health Center today.  Yeah, only, it turns out that they have to do a full workup in order to issue a referral, but insurance will only pay for one of those a year, and I had one back in December.  Luckily, it turns out that the attending that did my exam back in December was the attending in the SHC today, and she remembered me!  So she had the file faxed over from the other facility, called in a referral to the specialist after a quick chart consult and pressure check, and then billed the visit as a standard office visit so I wouldn't have to pay out the wazoo.  Yay!
yrmencyn: (Default)
I made the tastiest salad today!  But I never would have made it if I hadn't been cleaning out the fridge.  And yet it worked out wonderfully!

Cleaning-out-the-refrigerator salad

Sorrel, cilantro, grated carrot, and cheddar cheese curds; tossed with chioggia beets, leftover brisket, and garlic slices sauteed in bacon fat; topped with a couple fried eggs.  It really rocked -- the bacon fat and egg yolk tamed the sourness of the sorrel and made it PERFECT.

Also, I told the DVR to start recording Coupling on BBC America, and I'm watching an ep.  It's my favorite!  "Jane and the Truth Snake" is one of the best episodes in the entire run.

Ugh.  So much to do today.
yrmencyn: (food)
Well, it's been mostly a good two days.  Yesterday, my actual birthday, Elisa and Francis took me out to lunch at Spagio, where I had never been for brunch.  I decided to try their omelet of the day, which was salmon and mixed veggies, with a greens salad and some really fine fried potatoes.  I greatly enjoyed it, but was even more impressed with Fran's brunch calzone, a behemoth with Black Forest ham, eggs, gruyère (I think it was gruyère), and probably some other stuff as well, all in a beautifully puffed dough shell.  And even if she wasn't a huge fan, Elisa's crab and avocado salad looked lovely, and tasted fine to me!

The rest of the day I mostly sat around and sorted papers, some of which dated back to 2002 (most of those got chunked).  I was amazed to find that I two novels in the paper box, texts from a Women's Francophone Lit class I had taken where the texts were out-of-print or hard to find, so the prof just xeroxed the ENTIRE NOVEL.  I'm kind of excited, because -- I'll admit -- I don't think I ever read them, so it was like "oh!  books!"  And then I took a quick walk with Ali, and hung out with the family when they both wandered by errantly :)

Today, you'd THINK would have been a downhill move, since the A/C in Denney was dead and it was a Sauna Party in the DMP.  But when I got home, such lovely surprises!  There was a package from Kevin, returning the rice cooker and sending me some gifties.  In addition, there was a letter from my auto loan company.  Now, this was a little worrying, since last I checked I had paid that loan in full last month.  But I opened it up, and there was the title to my Jetta!  So only 2.25 years after my parents paid off the loan on my Corolla and I subsequently totaled it, I own my car outright again!  And although a little part of me was just worried that I might be tempting fate to say that, I don't think it's too dangerous: I drive but rarely, and I have a not-entirely-irrational dislike of left turns now.  So yes, I'm totally an adult or something, with my paid-off car and my rice cooker :)

And I made tasty tasty dinner tonight.  Curried mushrooms and eggplant -- it's so rich and thick and almost meaty.  Really more of a wintry dish, though; I'll have to remember it for when it gets colder.  Ooh, and then later Meg, Amanda, and I had ice cream, and A gave me a probe thermometer -- she knows me too well :)

Oh, and I made 7 quarts of vegetable stock today.  Like you do.  And watermelon sorbet.  And watermelon agua fresca, because JESUS CHRIST WATERMELONS ARE HUGE.

Also, last thing: Giant Eagle, my lucky grocery, is a den of fail.  I went to buy more corn syrup (I realized halfway through the sorbet that I didn't have enough, and didn't want the flavor distraction a honey sub would add), and well -- it was bad.  First off, I can't find anything, because the thing's been under renovation for months, and it's entirely possible it will be until well past the end of the year.  Second, even after I found the appropriate sections, they've mysteriously stopped carrying the things I like.  I'm REALLY brand-loyal with my hot sauces, and they didn't have them.  Now, not having Valencia hot sauce is... understandable, albeit sad, since it's really delicious.  But to not have Louisiana brand hot sauce, that's just annoying.  I wanted to buy the big-ass bottle, which shplorts out perfectly when you shake it.  And yes, there is Tabasco, but I really prefer La. brand; Tabasco tastes unbalanced to me (too much vinegar, not enough pepper).  AND -- and and and -- they only had the stupid small bottles of Tabasco.  Not to mention that the Hispanic section, usually my source for non-kidney red beans, had only pintos, blacks, and garbanzos.  All fine legumes, but what about my red beans?

Suffice it to say, I'll be making sure to make room in my suitcase for bags and bags of Camellia red beans, boxes and boxes of Luzianne family size ice tea bags, and maybe a couple bottles of hot sauce.

(Oh yeah, I'm headed down to La/Tx on Monday.  Did I mention?)
yrmencyn: (Default)
I made really tasty dinner tonight.  I was feeling all Korean-y, thanks to stopping by Cafe Amelea for some really fantastic potstickers, so I decided I'd go in that direction.  Let's ignore the fact that what I actually made was some weird pan-Asian thing, K?  And that kale isn't an Asian green as such.  But whatever.  Tofu, kale, wax beans, and tomatoes in a chili paste and fish sauce spiked veggie broth, all over millet.  It was really quite tasty, and there's just enough for tomorrow's lunch.

The scanners at work are possessed by the devil -- whenever we try to scan gray-scale they auto-switch to b&w.  And we can't figure out how to make them stop, except by switching to a different driver/software combo.  Yes, this may have to do with the fact that the damn things have been over-installed [i.e. re-installed without an uninstall] at least 3 times, badly.  I'd fix it if I could, but I don't have the necessary privileges.  Plus I'd need a young priest and an old priest.

Sorry, y'all, I don't really know how to talk here.  I've been keeping a lot of stuff -- events, feelings -- inside, and it's like I don't know where to start.  But I'm trying.  I'm really trying to reach back out into my online world.  So I'm on AIM much more, and Facebook chat -- feel free to say hi if you see me around.
yrmencyn: (food)
I had a productive day.  And by 'productive,' I actually mean 'enjoyable,' which isn't really the same at all.  I really did think about doing work, I did.  And then I decided to say fuck it, which I think may have even been the right choice.  Too late now if it wasn't.

At the ripe, early hour of noon I picked up [livejournal.com profile] talyr so we could go get lunch at the Pita Hut Grille, which... well, let's do this in LOLcat: OM NOM NOM.  It was so delicious.  Also Tal and I proved, once again, that we are the same person, as we not only ordered the exact same item (lamb kabob pita combo), but also snagged the same drink from the somewhat limited drink cooler (Snapple Iced Tea).  It was a stunning example of brain-share.  The pitas were VERY good, although I think I'll have to get the shawarma next time, since I do love me a column of rotisserie meat.  The really surprising thing was the texture of the meat -- I had been expecting chunks of lamb, but instead got patties of ground lamb (like a kofta kabob).  Not a bad thing, just unexpected.  I will be back.  Probably a lot.  I'll have to make myself walk or bike, otherwise I'll (1) singlehandedly treble our gasoline demand in this city; (2) become morbidly obese.  Seriously.  I could eat it every damn day.  Twice.  Vegetarians, I hear their falafel is stellar -- I'll have to try it.

So after our lovely meal, we scooted off down Morse Rd.  I know, why in the hell would anyone willingly drive down Morse Rd.?  Well, if you want to go from the Graceland area to Gahanna, it makes sense of a sort, especially if you're headed to this year's BIA Parade of Homes.  Fancy homes?  Check.  Excellent designs, both layout and decoration?  Check.  By the same token, a good amount of truly heedous designs, both in layout and decoration?  Check.  (Seriously, some of the things the builders had done... maybe I just have different tastes, but there was some godawful stuff in there that the fucking Pottery Barn would be ashamed to carry. 
Ooh, speaking of Pottery Barn.  In one of the homes, there was this little... computer nook?  Off the kitchen?  I don't really get it, but whatever.  The relevant thing to note here is that there was a massive clothespin, intended as some sort of wall-mounted note-hanger, just lying on the desk.  Like, 6x3x2.  Big.  My first thought, thanks to my horrible brokenness?  Nipple clamp.  Yep.

Anyway, Tal says that it was smaller this year, but that really suited me.  I did enjoy looking at all the fancy homes that I won't be living in (no seriously -- and I discovered a weird love of finished basements), but I was kind of getting a headache by the end, and I don't think I could have managed to wander through another seven homes.

But despite my headache, we persevered in our plan.  Our great cherry plan.  I mean, the Parade is only about eight miles from the Lynd Fruit Farm, and I had gotten an email from them yesterday, informing me that there were U-Pick cherries to be had, for only $1.50 a pound.  By the time we got there at about 3:30, the trees had been pretty damned picked over, but we still managed to get 3.2 lbs. of cherries.  [And in fact it wasn't just my perception -- the farm had planned to have U-Pick tomorrow, but they sent out an email canceling, due to the pickers who fell upon the orchard like locusts.]  By this point we were both tired and sweaty.  I dropped Tal off so she could meet a friend for dinner (at, hee, Pita Hut -- told you it was good), and headed home.

I intended to take a shower and then do something useful, I really did.  But then I remembered this delicious-sounding pizza place that opened recently in the Short North (bonoTOGO).  So I foolishly called [livejournal.com profile] comixologist and invited her along.  Foolishly not b/c I don't enjoy Comix's company -- I do -- but because it's bloody ComFest this weekend, so everywhere within ballistic strike distance of Goodale Park is a massive clusterfuck.

Needless to say, I spent probably fifteen minutes just getting down High St. from Com's, and I did not have my pizza.  Maybe tomorrow.

But by this point we were starving.  And Com works at a movie theatre, and can get people into movies free.  And the Lennox Center has chain restaurants far from the madding crowds.  So we had dinner at Champps, which... well, you know, I've only ever had a plate of cheese fries from a Champps, so I wasn't expecting much.  But I have to say I was pleasantly surprised.  It's no fine dining, but my Shrimp Po' Boy salad (just don't think too hard about it) was fresh and satisfying, and they had Leinenkugel's Sunset Wheat on special for $3 for a... Jesus, it had to have been at least a 20 oz. pour, probably more.  So that was acceptable.

And then we saw Wanted, which I intend to write more about later when it's not almost 3am.  In short, it had some violence gratuity issues, but it was pretty.  And I'd eat James McAvoy with a spoon, but that's neither here nor there.

And now I've been futzing around on the intertubes for, like, 3 hours.  Which is healthy.  Gnight!
yrmencyn: (armadillo)
I totally did.  In my defense, when I woke up my back hurt a lot (it's still achy), and the thought of sitting in a desk chair to grade or revise was pretty upsetting. But you know what I did do? 

Lots of things.

I went to the farmers' market and got asparagus, tomatoes, and snow peas.  I also got some fresh cheddar curds from Blue Jacket Dairy, which are SO much better than the ones I got last time from a different producer (sorry, other producer: yours were softer and sweeter than I like).  Sadly, they were out of their Gretna Grilling Cheese, which is basically halloumi (God I love halloumi).  Must make it to the market earlier next week.  I missed out on many delicious things, like whole wheat flour and sorrel :(  But hey, cheese curds!  And I'll survive without wheat flour for this long.

And then I made tasty scrambled eggs with veggies, including some chives that, it turns out, are growing in the corner of the garden -- who knew?  We watched Delicatessen with lunch... it's an odd movie, it really is.

Tonight was very relaxing and wonderful.  It's the kind of night I wish I had more often (this is really no one's fault but my own).  First Kevin and I went out for dinner at the Olde Mohawk, in the German Village.  I had a bratwurst sandwich that just about made my cold stone heart melt with joy.  Bratwurst, sauerkraut, onions, swiss cheese, and an absurdly large schmear of Grey Poupon, all on a soft hoagie roll.  I haven't had that delirious combination since I was in Quebec in the summer of 2003 -- no one else I cook for regularly has my insatiable love of sauerkraut.  And then, just when I was standing at the Pearly Gates of Food Heaven, we upped the ante and picked up a couple of iced teas and a smorgasbord of tea cookies and macarons to-go at Pistacia Vera.

Why to-go?  Because we went to see Macbeth in Schiller Park, that's why.  Believe it or not, I've spent five summers in Columbus, and it's only now at the beginning of my sixth that I've finally made it to Shakespeare in the Park.  Why haven't I gone earlier?!  So wonderful.  It's totally free, the acting's not bad, and hey -- Macbeth.  It's no Lear, but it does have the "tomorrow" soliloquy, and some fabulous witchery.  I was, I should note, woefully underdressed.  Not in terms of formality level -- you sit on grass in a park, people -- but in terms of warmth.  It was in the high 50s by the time the play was over, and I was wearing shorts and a t-shirt.  Thank God we brought two blankets.  I think by the time the next show is up (Tartuffe!) it'll be warmer at night, but if I should happen to go back during this run, I'm totally brewing up some chai or Somali tea and bringing it in the pump pot.

And then in and among these things I made seitan, shredded it, and simmered it in a spicy sauce.  And made bread dough.  All this, of course, is prep for our final poetry workshop, a potluck dinner tomorrow.

And that was my totally unproductive yet also productive day.  And I feel good about it, so there.
yrmencyn: (armadillo)
You know what sucks?  Being a moron.  As in, you're making "Beer-glazed black beans" from Mark Bittman's recipe in How to Cook Everything Vegetarian, and you don't keep canned black beans on hand.  But that's ok, because you have a pressure cooker; that really speeds up the process.  So you do the hour-long quick soak (even with a pressure cooker you can't escape that), and then you load up the cooker to cook the beans for twenty minutes.  And then you're standing at the counter fixing some hot tea because it frickin' cold outside what the hell, the weather?, and suddenly the pressure cooker starts to vomit water out the side, which is a little appalling.  But you squeeze the two halves of the handle together, because sometimes you have to do that briefly to complete the seal.  And it certainly does stop belching water onto the stove, but then it starts to toss water out through the weight, which can't be a good thing.  And then you kill heat cause, hey, whoa buddy, and you grab the tongs to remove the weight and drop pressure quick before the thing explodes, and the cooker continues intermittently pissing bean water into the air for a minute or so.  Which is fun.

And why?  Because beans foam, and you have to include some oil in the pot to inhibit that action, otherwise -- you guessed it -- the cooker will belch water, act weird, and possibly explode* if a bean skin gets caught in the valve stem.  And you didn't include any oil, because you're a dolt.

But the beans turn out well in the end.

*Well, actually, release one of the many redundant pressure valves in a modern pressure cooker.  It's quite safe.  But that's beside the point.
yrmencyn: (qc - drunk)
I feel very accomplished right now.  I took pretty much the whole day off on Sunday, because it was ABSOLUTELY GORGEOUS outside for the first time this season.  And then I slept pretty badly that night, so I had to come home and nap after teaching on Monday (thank God my afternoon classes were canceled that day [professor -- same one for both -- was out of town]), else I fall asleep at my desk.  And then, as naps so often do, even when necessary, the nap pretty much made me worthless for the rest of the day.  I made a delicious risi e fagioli soup with swiss chard, which I *am* proud of, but that was about it.

So I realized last night that I had about three days worth of work, and about a day to do it in.  I started in on it this morning, and the longer I worked the more I realized how incredibly fucked I was.  I mean really, royally screwed, as in neither prepared to teach nor learn tomorrow.  I was supposed to rehearse with Minstrelry tonight, but I sent them an apologetic email and put my head back down and worked more.

And here it is, a quarter after midnight, and I'm about to go to sleep.  I have graded papers, I have written a short-short story, I have written up commentary on a classmate's manuscript for baby fic, I have revised and expanded my lesson plans for tomorrow, and I have attended a planning meeting for the end of the year (yeah, I would have skipped that one, too, except I didn't realize until about 10 minutes before we started how slammed I was, and I was already sitting there doing work while other early-comers chatted around me).  I still have 12 poems I need to comment on before the undergrad workshop I'm sitting in on this quarter, but that's not until 5:30 tomorrow -- I've got three hours of freeish time sprinkled throughout the day tomorrow, and I should be able to squeeze that all in.

So I'm tired, and I'm stressed, but I also feel proud of myself for managing to keep my nose to the grindstone* all afternoon -- I'm generally not good at that kind of sustained effort.  And in the end I managed to dig myself out of my hole, so go me.

---

*I nearly said 'nose to the wheel', which seems to be a conflation of 'to keep one's nose to the grindstone' and 'to keep one's shoulder to the wheel'.  I think I sort of prefer the neologism to either standard saying, but oh well.
yrmencyn: (food)
No really, I am.  First, let me just disclaim: I have in no way committed any crimes against my country.  I even voted in the presidential primary, which is (sadly) Advanced Citizenship.  But I have committed sins of apostasy, or blasphemy, or whatever.  It's hard to classify when it's not religious.

OK, so, first off?  I bought a product that I have often derided.  That product?  Decaffeinated coffee. See, I started making my coffee in a tasty, tasty way: in a little moka pot, a nice dark roast freshly ground with cardamom and coriander.  Pour into a mug with about a quarter cup of warmed, sweetened milk, lightly frothed.  Nummy.  Anyway, I want to drink it... pretty much all day.  Problem is, I'm apparently getting old.  Either that, or I actually have finally kicked my bad caffeine habit.  Anyway, practically speaking?  I can't drink my delicious strong coffee after about 3pm, or I don't sleep.  So I broke down and bought some decaf Colombian French roast beans.  Go ahead and judge me.  I judge myself.

etc )
yrmencyn: (food)
I'm reading Sarah Vowell's The Partly Cloudy Patriot right now, and one of the essays is an open letter to Bill Clinton, regarding her advice for his (then as-yet-unbuilt) presidential library.  But that's not important.  What *is* important is that she quotes three lines of poetry that I consider to be some of the best ever written, from Walt Whitman's "Song of Myself."  (Specifically, they're from Section 51 of the 1891-92 edition, or just, uh, 'near the end' of the 1855 edition):
Do I contradict myself?
Very well then I contradict myself,
(I am large, I contain multitudes.)
Amazing.

-------------------

I had a really good evening.  Kevin and I were both getting mopey and blah, sitting around the house.  So we figured, well, we have stuff to do, but by God we don't have to do it here.  To the coffee shop!  Unfortunately, there was an unusually large crowd there, perhaps thanks to Mozart's having an open house thing that crowded out some of the folks who usually study there.  Fortunately, we ran into Elizabeth and Amy, two great folks in the MFA program, *and* we managed to poach their neighbors' table when they left.  Score!  So we sat around and gossiped with them for an hour or so, which was really great.  I usually see both in them in the context of much larger, louder gatherings, so it was a welcome change of pace to just sip coffee and chat.

We went pretty much directly from Cup O' Joe to [livejournal.com profile] gothicsquish's opening at MadLab downtown.  There was also good fun to be had there.  All the pieces were interesting, and Squish has an absolutely gorgeous piece there that she hasn't posted online -- it's well worth the trip!  Also, cocktails sausages and do-it-yourself bruschette (ok, not really bruschette, since the bread wasn't toasted, but still delicious).  It was nice to get out and see work in an interesting space, and to get to chat with her and [livejournal.com profile] lucki_dog.  Kevin and I had been considering going to Tip Top for dinner, since it's right around the corner, basically, and we invited Squish, Lucki, and their friends J and M along.

I hadn't ever been to Tip Top before, but I'd heard good things about it.  As I understand it, it's run by the same folks who run Betty's and Surly Girl, both of which I consider to be broadly-appealing crowd pleasers, and Tip Top was no exception to the trend.  Not one but two of our party got a grilled goat cheese salad, which I nearly ordered.  I would have regretted not getting it, too -- it looked and smelled divine -- if my pot roast hadn't been so delicious and tender.  And the Ohio nachos (i.e. made with thick, crunchy kettle chips) and country fried steak looked pretty great, too, as did the corn chowder and the baskets of sweet potato fries.

And then to make it really fun, we ran into a former glee clubber of Lucki's and my acquaintance.  Apparently L runs into him strangely frequently, but I haven't seen him since... what... Europe trip of '02?  That can't be right, but it's what my brain says.  Anyway, it's weird, because I was just thinking about him the other day.  So yes, that was cool.  Hopefully the obligatory exchange of cell phone numbers means we might actually catch back up.

So yes, I would say it was a good night.  Old friends, new friends, medium-aged friends, good food, good art, good talk.  We win at socializing.

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yrmencyn

December 2009

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