At the back of the hill

Warning: If you stay here long enough you will gain weight! Grazing here strongly suggests that you are either omnivorous, or a glutton. And you might like cheese-doodles.
BTW: I'm presently searching for another person who likes cheese-doodles.
Please form a caseophilic line to the right. Thank you.

Saturday, September 30, 2017

PUERTO RICO: ANGRY RANT FROM PRESIDENT AT BEDMINSTER

Donald Trump arrived at his golf course in New Jersey yesterday evening for another long weekend of chasing balls and writing messages.
Fortunately he had his dependable cell phone with him.
He was hard at work by the crack of dawn.

From Twitter:

The Mayor of San Juan, who was very complimentary only a few days ago, has now been told by the Democrats that you must be nasty to Trump.
4:19 AM - Sep 30, 2017


...Such poor leadership ability by the Mayor of San Juan, and others in Puerto Rico, who are not able to get their workers to help. They....
4:26 AM - Sep 30, 2017


...want everything to be done for them when it should be a community effort. 10,000 Federal workers now on Island doing a fantastic job.
4:29 AM - Sep 30, 2017


The military and first responders, despite no electric, roads, phones etc., have done an amazing job. Puerto Rico was totally destroyed.
4:33 AM - Sep 30, 2017


Fake News CNN and NBC are going out of their way to disparage our great First Responders as a way to "get Trump." Not fair to FR or effort!
4:48 AM - Sep 30, 2017


Playing with your Twitter is not leadership.


By what right is Puerto Rico ours? How can we, a nation that was born in the struggle against foreign tyranny, now still justify our own colonialism?
Do we have any moral claim to administer that territory when for decades we've done such a thoroughly miserable job?


Stubby little fingers, poking.

Kudos.




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PUERTO RICO: GENOCIDE BY STUPIDITY

Several months from now, when everything is added up, the world should hold the Trump Administration and the Republican Party criminally accountable for destroying Puerto Rico.


"I cannot fathom the thought that the greatest nation in the world cannot figure out the logistics for a small island of 100 miles by 35 miles."

---Carmen Yulín Cruz, mayor of San Juan


"This is an island, surrounded by water, big water, ocean water."

---Some orange-coloured dingo


Complicit in this are Jared Kushner, Ivanka Trump, Melania Trump, Mike Pence, Paul Ryan, Mitch McConnell, Jeff Sessions, and pretty much the entire current upper echelon of the Republican Party.

"The loss of life -- it’s always tragic -- but it’s been incredible, the results that we’ve had with respect to loss of life. People can’t believe how successful that has been relatively speaking."


After WWII we found the Axis leaders guilty of crimes against humanity.

At that time, the United States was head of the free world.

Presently we are a corrupt oligarchy.

And Christian.







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Friday, September 29, 2017

THINK OF KEDGEREE

Centuries ago the English discovered a rather pleasant dish, easy to prepare and easy to digest, that Indians in the central-western part of the subcontinent enjoyed. They took the idea back to Blighty, and over time replaced the lentil component with smoked fish, because the two taste so similar and they didn't have lentils in upper-class households.

The modern British version contains smoked haddock, rice, butter, cream, chopped hard boiled egg, minced parsley, and, of course, curry powder. Because it is an Indian dish, and all Indian food needs curry powder.

Sometimes they add raisins too. Which is also Indian.
Oh my heavens yes indeed. Ji.
Jolly.


鹹魚雞粒炒飯
['Haam yü gai naap chaau faan']

The other day I had salt fish and chicken fried rice. Which is just as much like kedgeree as British cooking, and I am surprised that outside of a Cantonese milieu no one has ever even heard of it.

Had it with steaming cup of milk-tea.
Also Cantonese milieu.

In addition to little bits of rehydrated salt fish and chopped chicken, this tasty rice dish also has egg fried in with the rice, along with a touch of ginger, chopped lettuce (better cooked than raw), scallions, chives.
All it needs is little spoonfuls of chili sauce for a taste of heaven.
This is the new breakfast of champions right here.
But much more lovely later.



I think I discovered this dish a few years ago, I can't exactly remember when. It's sort of a tea-restaurant (茶餐廳 'chaa chaan teng') and cheap diner specialty, and often satisfies the single person who doesn't want to spend too much time thinking about such things as porkchops.
Or oysters.

It is very similar to kedgeree. But with changes.
Add ketchup if you feel it needs that.
Or just hot sauce.




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RAMBLING AND IRRATIONAL

All important people say stupid things. Sometimes, like with Donald Rumsfeld, you can sort of parse the statement to make some kind of sense. "We know, there are known knowns; there are things we know we know. We also know there are known unknowns; that is to say, we know there are some things we do not know, but there are also unknown unknowns, the ones we don't know we don't know."
Clearly what he means is "whatever, dude."

In the case of the man that the drop-outs, cynically opportunistic investment bankers, morally bankrupt elements, and true Christians, voted into office last November, that may prove very hard. Seeing as unlike Rumsfeld who laid out his vision of unknown things in statesman-like fashion, Dingus von Drumpf contradicts himself.

"We’re gonna find out. And — and, by the way, when I say you’re gonna find out. You can never really find, you know, there are gonna be — no matter what numbers we come up with, there are gonna be lots of people that did things that we’re not going to find out about. But we will find out because we need a better system where that can’t happen."

---Donald Trump

[Cited in the Daily Intelligencer, January 26, 2017.]


"You know what uranium is, right? It’s this thing called nuclear weapons, and other things. Like lots of things are done with uranium. Including some bad things. But nobody talks about that."

---Donald Trump

[Explanation of uranium during a press briefing on February 16, 2017.] 


Incoherence and egocentric bloat are a bad combination.



It would be so nice if Trump, Pence, Ryan, McConnell, and Lindsey Olin Graham spontaneously auto-combusted, OR decided that they had been repulsive enough by now and committed suicide.
That probably won't happen.





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Thursday, September 28, 2017

KETCHUP, MUSTARD, MAYONNAISE, HOT SAUCE, HONEY

One a Facebook page for individuals who are largely from a certain milieu, someone posted the picture below. Now, let me stress "a certain milieu".
It is a milieu that by its nature would not appeal to many people, nor even be understandable to them. So maybe it is not a perfectly accurate reflection of society in general.

Nevertheless. Evenso. And not at all withstanding. If it does validly stand in for all of us, that is a darn good thing.



The responses to the question posed, from numerous people named Esther, Rivky (or Rivkie), Gila, Mendy, Shunamith, Debra (various spellings), plus several names too specific to mention because you might actually know them, was, overwhelmingly, "hell yeah lets eat".

Many of the men wished to point out that there was a cake lurking behind the fried chicken, or that if hot wax dripped on the food it would ruin it.

A huge number people on either side of the mechitza made serious and passionate suggestions regarding condiments.

Only one (!) wondered about kashrus.



So basically: Yes, and a condiment.



There is hope for humanity yet.




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Wednesday, September 27, 2017

REPENTANCE

This post is for asshats. Specifically, the asshats that voted for Trump, and still support him. Christian, Jewish, or just plain vile.

I've updated the 'Trump' clickable label. Hitting it will now bring up all Trump posts, giving you hours of reading displeasure. Which you deserve.
You unspeakable morons voted for that man.




Realize this: he's a monstrous and repulsive subhuman. With short little icky fingers. And you lot are pretty effing bad too.


Especially gun-nut Bob and his pals over in the East Bay, that nasty Polish woman, and the paranoid bitch neurotic Russian. In the spirit of the Aseres Yemei Teshuvah, during which we think back in regret to the ways in which we have not done right by our fellow man, and have wronged or insulted someone, if I haven't given you acid indigestion recently I'm sorry.

I do not want to neglect anyone, but I'd have to still associate with you repellent hosebags to do that. I'm sure you'll understand if I avoid you like the ghastly pestilences that you are. Please consider yourself thoroughly pissed on, over, and at, and we'll call it even.


The people mentioned above are inexplicably Jewish.
And quite possibly insane and diseased.
Chickens should shit on them.


All the Christians who voted for Trump are dumbasses, ab initio, and while one could name names it would be both a Ziziphus arbeit of monumental proportion, and a complete waste of time, because they are stupid, immoral, and utterly beneath consideration.
Not even worth insulting.




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CHINATOWN: FAVOURITE PLACES

An acquaintance asked where I preferred to smoke my pipe when not at work. Was it at home? Surrounded by my books and a shrunken head collection? Or was I an utter pervert, haunting school playgrounds after hours, when the little tykes were few and easily terrified?

How did I cope, with "no smoking" everywhere?

I gravidly informed him that I did so in my basement, while gloating over all the second hand tires I was saving up for the war effort.


But actually it's in several alleyways in Chinatown. Trenton Street, Beckett, Ross Alley, Hang Ah, and Commercial Street. Quiet at most times, cooler during a heatwave, and less windy than down in the financial district.

And far fewer belligerent heffalumps screeching about how that pipe will destroy my health, kill the wales, dolphins, and little children, and is the source of all that is evil in her universe.


ROSS ALLEY BY DAY
Ross Alley between Washington and Jackson Streets



ROSS ALLEY AT NIGHT
Vagabondish, Ross Alley, by Mark Coggins.

The Cantonese people in Chinatown are far more tolerant of smokers than the suburban middle classes in the Financial District or the shopping areas around Union Square, and there is more interesting stuff to eat or drink, without having to master yuppie-menuspeak or going broke
It's nicer, and much less snooty.


There are several places where I like to go for lunch or a tea-time snack, where I am welcome, and I know I will never see the screaming white suburban heffalumps.


荷里活茶餐廳 NEW HOLLYWOOD BAKERY & RESTAURANT
['Ho-lei-wut Chaa Chaan-teng']
652 Pacific Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94133.
Telephone: 415-397-9919

華盛頓茶餐廳 WASHINGTON BAKERY AND RESTAURANT
['Waa-seng-duen Chaa Chaan-teng']
733 Washington Street, San Francisco, CA 94108.
Telephone: 415-397-3232

永興餅家茶餐廳 THE AA BAKERY & CAFÉ
['Wing-hing bing-ka Chaa Chaan-teng']
1068 Stockton Street
San Francisco, CA 94108
(415) 981-0123


Plus of course Yummy Dim Sum and Fast Food, Capital Restaurant, Kam Po, Ma's Dim Sum and Cafe, New Fortune Dim Sum & Cafe, The Boiling Shrimp ...




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A SPECIAL KIND OF STUPID

While cruising the internet yesterday, I found a plaintive cry from a mother in Bastrop, Texas. According to Wikipedia, Bastrop has slightly over 7,000 people in the county of which it is the chief city, five thousand plus in the town itself.

WIKIPEDIA: "The racial makeup of the city is 72.34% White, 17.00% African American, 0.99% Asian, 0.73% Native American, 0.00% Pacific Islander, 7.02% from other races, and 1.91% from two or more races. 17.75% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race."

The person in question is, naturally, white.
As established by her Facebook.

This is what she wrote:

"SOMEONE PLEASE HELP. I've been searching for a daycare for nearly 9 months now and finally found one that had an opening for my 2 year old daughter. I was signing all my paperwork getting ready to put her in for the following week. The lady asked for shot records and I gave her the exemption paperwork and told her I am against vaccinations. I live in Bastrop, Texas. What number can I call to report her for discriminating my daughter?? She HAD a spot until that moment!! Can someone give me some info and some numbers before I lose this spot?!"

End cite.


Bitch, please.

Has anyone called child protective services on you yet? If not, they should. Privileged middle-class twizzle brains like you endanger your own children and other people, and lower the average. You are an unstable liability.
You ooze entitlement and poisonous ignorant sanctimony.

Why on earth are people like you reproducing?

Child abusers like you belong in prison.



By the way, you've lost that spot.




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Tuesday, September 26, 2017

C'MON! I'M PRETTY!

A scene from the show Family Guy which shows exactly what's wrong with American womanhood. Featuring a juvenile in what can only be described as an uncompromising situation.


"ARE YOU OKAY?"

[SOURCE: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JaCrzKeVhHQ.]


You know that television shows are to blame, don't you. It's because of what they see on teevee that so many American woman grow up with impossible standards of beauty, and weird appearance obsessions.


Shampoo, foundation, blush, rouge, mascara, shade, lipstick, gloss, after bath splash, nail polish, tattoos, toner, highlighter, cuticle removers .......


Pretty much batguano crazy and out of it.


Handbags, and shoes.


Terrifying.



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THERE IS AN ADULT MALE GOAT IN THE CASA BLANCA

While president Donald Trump was squabbling with black athletes and siding with the Klan, Puerto Rico slid further into the abyss.

Shortages of food, of fuel, and of drinkable water.
No electricity. Almost no communication.
Hospitals without back-up power.
Monumental destruction.

Infrastructural collapse, agricultural collapse, severe housing degradation, economic activity at a standstill, the sick and elderly without succour ...

It's shaping up to be a massive humanitarian crisis.
Trump tweets. And tweets. And tweets.
But not about Puerto Rico.


Because three and half million Island dwelling what the heck are those folks are they Meskins? Why don't they speak English? Latino freaks who can't be kept out with a wall but perhaps we can just ignore them if they don't come over here, are far less important than slapping down those uppity blacks protesting police violence and racism.


OH WAIT, HE FINALLY MENTIONED PUERTO RICO!

"Texas & Florida are doing great but Puerto Rico, which was already suffering from broken infrastructure & massive debt, is in deep trouble.."

"...It's old electrical grid, which was in terrible shape, was devastated. Much of the Island was destroyed, with billions of dollars...."

"...owed to Wall Street and the banks which, sadly, must be dealt with. Food, water and medical are top priorities - and doing well. #FEMA"

See, if there are too many Puerto Ricans, it will be so much harder to make America white "great" again. Besides, it's not like they're ever going to revolt. We're the very best thing that ever happened to them!

And Puerto Ricans are NOT very fine people.
They speak Spanish.


"El maldito bastardo recalcitrante en la Casa Blanca... "


Everyone knows that one cannot express oneself clearly in that language, it's nowhere near as eloquent as God's own English.

Hijo de la chingada.



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Monday, September 25, 2017

PAUSE FOR SOME PLACE TASTY -- 車仔麵之家

Anton Street, south of HK police headquarters, is a narrow passage with only a few business located there, barely wide enough for vehicular traffic plus parking. But you can get modern coffee, and a bowl of noodles.
Two different small shops, no seating; eat or drink standing up.
There's a Chinese laundry in between.
Also minor frontage.


NOODLES

They are in Wanchai, north side of Hong Kong Island, centrally located.
One imagines that a fellow pipe smoker who works at a bank not far from there might occasionally drop by for a snack, but in all likelihood he isn't familiar with either establishment.

He is probably extremely familiar with the area, though.
It's a bustling and fashionable part of Hong Kong.
Very near everything important.


車仔麵之家
灣仔晏頓街1號 A店
Telephone: 2529 6313
Facsimile: 2520 1305

The English name might read "car child noodle's family", or some such. In which 'car child'(車仔 'che chai') means a little cart such as previously used for a portable food stall. Little cart noodles (車仔麵 'che chai min') are an infinitely variable meal, as specified by the customer, featuring just two constants: noodles, and broth. What is added is up to you entirely.


Many customers choose things such as fish balls, fried pork skin, offal, and a vegetable. There is a list of what-have-yous in English on the wall, you will be pleased to know, but you should understand that the item transcribed as "pig pudding" means gelled hog blood. In case you like such things.
It's kind of similar to dinuguan.

ADDRESS: Anton Street 1, shop A. The nearest cross street is Queen's Road, there is a Seven Eleven facing the alley, and a Marks & Spencer food shop on the corner. There's always a Seven Eleven somewhere nearby, anywhere in Hong Kong, but 'Marks & Spencer' is an anomaly. The staff of both places probably eat at the noodle shop in any case.

Anton Street extends to Hennesey at the other end, where Johnston Road splits off. There's probably another Seven Eleven near there.

You should want chicken wings, curry fish ball, and seasonal vegetables with your noodles, trust me on this. 雞翅、咖哩魚蛋、時菜。
Choose 粉麵, which are softish medium rice stick.
You can add squid and turnip too.
魷魚、蘿蔔。

Pronunciation: 雞翅 ('gai yik'),咖哩魚蛋 ('gaa lei yü daan'),時菜 ('si choi'),粉麵 ('fan min'),魷魚 ('yau yü'),蘿蔔 ('lo baak').


Open Monday through Saturday from seven in the morning to six at night. Closed Sundays. A meal will cost you slightly over a dollar (U.S.), which is both the market rate for this kind of food and extremely affordable.


Sweet and sour fried gluten, fried tofu cubes, simmered black mushrooms, peculiar bits of pig including cleaned intestinal fortitudes .....
No Spam (午餐肉) as far as I can tell.
Which is rather a pity.




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IT'S VERY LIBERATING!

For the record, I wish to state that combining a miniskirt with a thong is an unwise decision. The result is both startling and disturbing. The size of the revealed continent does not matter, it's the revelation itself that bothers.

When you are old enough to dress yourself, you have a responsibility.

Being a man, there is little danger of me dressing like that.
Most women also understand the paradigm.
But by no means all.


A thong is stunningly Kardashian-ish in tastelessness.


Yoga pants are pretty darn horrid too.



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Sunday, September 24, 2017

DEATH IS IN THE DETAILS

While watching an episode of a crime series from way back when, the term 'barbiturate' roused my curiosity, as well as my imagination. Reason being that barbiturates are so splendidly old-fashioned, both as an addictive substance and as a means of murder or suicide.


"He's lying in the library, we think some one slipped a mickey in his whiskey. Poor old Dingo seems to have died from an overdose of brallobarbital."


Astute observation by the housekeeper establishes that the bottle of Vesparax (three parts secobarbital, one part brallobarbital, one part hydroxyzine) prescribed by Doctor Flynch is missing.
It had been on the bedside table.

Uncle Dingo had chronic convulsive fever ever since he came home from the war -- he had been in the Pacific Theatre -- and along with the stutter, limp, bloodshot eyes, and festering under-arm rot, it was unlikely he'd ever find a wife. It just was simpler to proscribe stuff to keep him quiet.
Much more tolerable sedated and not twitching.
Alone in his corner, muttering.
And picking scabs.

Problem was, the odious crotchet inherited a pile from a distant relative, and while he had no offspring of his own (that we know of), there were several cousins who were in line to inherit some or all of the fortune, depending on what his last will and testament said, and wanted him to croak before some curvy gold digger bit the bullet, plugged her nose, and with a straight face asserted "I do".

So yes, there are suspects. But personally I think he did himself in. He was clearly insane, emotionally frustrated beyond belief, hadn't had a romance since long before his left-testicle got blasted off in that hunting accident, couldn't stand his own embarrassing odours, and the frequent spasms would often cause him to bang into a wall or fall down the stairs.

He once got lost in the parking lot.
"Disoriented".

That's probably why Doctor Flynch gave him the medicine anyway.
He figured that eventually Dingo would be sick of himself.
As everyone else was of being anywhere near him.


Unique plot twist: turns out the housekeeper has NO sense of smell, and also many relatives who also habitually jerked and mumbled.
Plus a collection of ball-gags in the kitchen.
Dear old Dingo was "cool".
Totally.



Don't know how I'm going to factor all that in, as well as mentioning 'naked, bucking like a bronco, and yelling "giddy up"', or my idea that Doctor Flynch used to work at an abattoir before going into medicine.

Nor have I figured out whether the housekeeper is black or white, male or female, addicted to barbiturates or a heroine fiend.

Maybe these aren't important details.




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TRAFFIC SAFETY INNOVATION

Somewhere in this country there are geniuses. Rare people who change the lives of those around them in many wonderful ways.

One seldom meets them, but can appreciate them none-the-less.


I do not know who did this, but it's wonderful.


DIRE WARNING!


Reflectors on a tree.
Near a road.

I applaud him.
Or her.


Undoubtedly it saves countless lives.
That tree might jump out at the unwary driver.
Now he swerves out of the way.



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Saturday, September 23, 2017

WARMLY OOZING GOODNESS

My apartment mate knows how to manipulate me so that I do exactly what she wants. As an illustration: I had replaced the bulb in the kitchen light fixture, using the type mandated by the authorities here in SF. Which may be the same as what the state demands now be used. Super earth friendly macrobiotic all natural gmo-free twisty bulbs, made by spiritual people.
The bulb gave out an industrial light, somewhat clear and cold.
I was fine with it. Not the same, but whatever.
She positively despised it.


She told me she was going to find a better bulb today.

When I got home this evening, there was food and a slice of cake waiting.

I can be bought; my price is roast duck and rice, plus pastry.

That's cheap, I know.


Please understand that I am five foot eight and a half, she is only five five.
I have further reach, better leverage, and longer arms. When I stand on the stepladder, I can grunt and swear and take off the glass cover of the light, whereas she would need two or three extra steps.

We now have a new light in the kitchen.
It glows somewhat warmer.



I'll do almost anything if it's nice roast duck.




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GWYNETH PALTROW, AS 'DEHUMANLY' AS SHE CAN BE

There are times when you think someone can't possibly get any weirder. For instance, the elderly man in Marin who rolls around on the grass outside during warm weather moaning about the state of the universe and accusing someone of "psychically" stealing his credit card, or the repulsive Irish immigrant saying that Donald Trump is as good a Christian as it gets.
"No", you think, "that's it; there's nothing more looped".
Their loopy goes all the way up to eleven now.
Gratiutous Spinal Tap reference.
It's appropriate.


"Where should I really be? Where is the great bar with organic wine? Where do I get a bikini wax in Paris?"


Gwyneth Paltrow, internet marketeer and one-time mediocre performance person, sells crystals. Among many other useless things.

Quote from Goop.com:

"Also known as the Goddess Stone, chrysocolla is associated with the fourth (heart) and fifth (throat) chakras. It aids women in embracing their divine feminine power through strong communication, self-expression, empowerment, and education. While it stimulates the mind, calming effects allow truth and inner wisdom to surface and be heard. It emphasizes the power that our words and actions have on those around us, and encourages compassion and strengthening of character. It brings forth prosperity and eagle-eye discernment in business by enhancing analytical and intuitive abilities. As it is the stone of goddesses, high priestesses, and medicine women everywhere, those who resonate with chrysocolla will feel its ancient energies and connection with indigenous wisdom traditions."

"It’s time to put that goddess voice to work, and help raise our collective vibration by showing some love. "

End quote.

[SOURCE: http://goop.com/the-8-essential-crystals/. AUTHOR: Colleen McCann]


Spend a few moments drinking in that craziness.


There's also this:

"Every medical tradition from Western to Chinese to Ayurveda has a unique method for clearing the body of parasites. My treatment is based on knowledge of the Essenes, a community that lived outside of Jerusalem during biblical times. In those days, when a healer learned of a worm infestation, they would put the patient in a tub of milk until the worms would come out to drink—parasites love milk! In fact, many people who think they’re allergic to milk actually have a parasite in their system."

[SOURCE: http://goop.com/you-probably-have-a-parasite-heres-what-to-do-about-it/. AUTHOR: Linda Lancaster]

Honestly, I cannot make this crap up. But I don't have to. Somebody beat me to it, and took all the heavy lifting out of crap-up making.
This up-crapping also goes all the way to eleven.
How much more crappy could this be?
None. None more crappy.

[Another Spinal Tap reference.]




From Wikipedia:
"Goop, and by extension Paltrow, has drawn criticism by showcasing expensive products, and promoting medically and scientifically impossible treatments, some of which could be harmful. The controversies have included vaginal steaming, the use of jade eggs, and "Body Vibes", wearable stickers that were claimed to "rebalance the energy frequency in our bodies" and which Goop falsely claimed were made of a NASA-developed material."
End cite.

Gwyneth Paltrow should soak her jade yoni egg in goatsmilk.
Her customers may vaginally steam their heads.
Cheese in a tin, for all of them.
Up-crap themselves.
Goddesses.



AFTERTHOUGHT

BTW: I'm thinking of giving everyone yoni eggs for Christmas.
Not jade ones, but inexpensive ceramic knock-offs.
Pre-soaked and sage-smoked.
Magic.




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Friday, September 22, 2017

A VERBAL TUSSLE BETWEEN MADMEN

Honestly, what can one say about this year's General Assembly at the United Nations? Other than to praise the signature haircuts of the two star-performers as unique and instantly recognizable? If you saw either man on the street you would immediately know who they were. You might panic.
Your wisest move would be to run away screaming.



Source article: BBC - schoolyard bullies.


Christ on a crutch, those are some f*cked-up coifs!

In a week during which, in the real world, disaster ruined the lives of millions in Mexico and the Caribbean, the war in Syria reached a crucial phase, and Turkey slid further into an abyss of Erdoganic insanity, the blustery rhetoric of these two demented heifers made the headlines.

If at this point you would far rather live in an alternative reality, none could blame you. And one might suggest that you lovingly dwell on the image below, and imagine how much different the world could have been.



Credit and copyright: Shaweesh.


This remarkable photo appeared in a school textbook. Which, upon reflection, presents a gilded past far better than it actually was.


Diplomatic statements

"The mentally deranged US dotard will be tamed, the rocket man will be tested like never before. This situation is complicated and sensitive, all relevant parties are provoking each other, there is an escalation of tensions."

------"the sounds of barking dogs"


In part King Faisal is also responsible, as by co-signing the UN charter he unknowingly became complicit in the forum of feeble minds that the United Nations has for many years provided.

Alas, both King Faisal and the venerable Jedi master pictured above are no longer with us. Both were wise, strong, and calm.


The modern world has few such.




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Thursday, September 21, 2017

GARBAGE NOODLES

This blogperson is anxiously waiting for his garbage noodles to cool down so that he can eat. Seriously, that's what they're called: 垃圾麵 ('laap-saap min'; garbage noodle). Texture and taste quickly slapdashed together with inventivity and flair, and a scant regard for proper procedure and nutrition.
In this case, curried peppers, and bacon in lieu of Spam.

The problem with Spam is that once you open the can, you are committed; there is an entire can of Spam that must be eaten in a limited time.
Even if my apartment mate helps out, this would be hard.
We don't handle that kind of pressure well.
Spam requires thought.


垃圾麵


I don't know about you, but I intend to enjoy my dinner. Afterwards I shall go to the karaoke bar nearby to listen to what can only be called the garbage noodles of musical performance.




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YANDELAVASA GRLDENWI STRAVENKA ON YOUR PLATE

Here in the SF and Marin area, the weather today will be quite bearable. Not so in the Caribbean, which got pummeled by Maria, the third major hurricane to hit this season. And in Hong Kong the temperature will be low nineties. San Francisco, you understand from this, is a little warmer than Amsterdam or Paris, much more temperate than anywhere in the Caribbean, and cooler than Hong Kong.

It is an ideal place to be.

Yesterday I could have been in Sham Tseng (深井) during lunch. Roast goose, rice, and a chilled milk tea. Surrounded by tourists. But it was on Grant Avenue, rather than Castle Peak Road (青山公路).

On my way out I told two middle aged tourists looking in that the roast meats were excellent.


燒鵝飯
['siu ngo faan']

One of these days I'll have to get something else there. The problem is that everytime I go, the prospect of roast goose drew me in, and I order before scoping out the specials on the wall. The black bean sauce stirfried clams (豆豉炒蜆 'dau si chaau hin') would have been splendid with a bowl of rice, and they also have field chicken (田雞 'tin kai', edible frog).
But for one person alone a rice plate special is very easy.

If I went with someone it would be different.

Preventing that happening is that so many people today are strongly food intolerant. Irritable bowelists, gluten phobes, plus vegetarians, vegans, culinary bigots, or very, very white AND all of the above.
You just can't eat with those people.

我真唔明白點解佢哋係噉樣嘅。



KVETCHY WHINING ABOUT PEOPLE!

They aren't Dutch or Cantonese, there's an irrational fearfulness there.

Although in the modern age even those people are becoming nuts and avoiding good things to eat, from all reports. But perhaps not quite yet slurping down kale shakes and turmeric water.

Nor do I think I've seen many younger people there on their own. They only come with their parents. See, no popcorn shrimp, no Jappo ramen specials, no exotic frogurt, no chicken wings in sweet sauce.
And no big boba balls for their ice bevs!
It is so very unhip!


San Francisco is a very pedestrian city.
In all likelihood gustatorily defective.
There's vegan crap and mojitos.







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Wednesday, September 20, 2017

MONGOLIAN BEEF, HOT!

Searching on the net for Chinese food near my apartment found me a whole bunch of dishes that are highly praised, which I present here in no particular order, other than as an opportunistic cut and paste.
They are all from the same restaurant.
Which I never knew about.
Nice reviews!


"Genuine Chinese deep fried saucy goodness"


It's a bit repetitive, but that shows something.
Stream of consciousness spoken word art.

Peking ravioli, Crab Rangoon, chow mein, General Tso's Chicken, Mongolian beef, Orange chicken, Chicken chow mein, Spicy eggplant, Hot and sour soup, Szechuan Beef, Singapore Rice Curry Noodles, Chicken Corn Soup, Sesame Chicken, Mixed vegetables with tofu, Egg rolls, Chow mein, Spicy eggplant.

Szechuan shrimp, Chicken and string beans, Sweet and sour chicken, Crab cheese puff, Curry Chicken, Wor Won Ton soup, Bbq pork steamed dumplings, Mongolian Beef, Green beans and shrimp, Chicken with broccoli, General Tsou's chicken, Hong Kong noodles, Mu shu, Sesame chicken, Shanghai dumplings, Pork sui mai, Chicken corn soup, Chow mein, Singapore Rice Noodles.

Chive Dumplings, Fried wontons, Hot and sour soup, Prawns and string beans, Scrambled egg with prawns, Chicken chow mein, Shrimp fried rice, Orange chicken, Vegetable fried rice, Meatless Sesame Chicken, Brown Rice, Chow fun, Kung pao chicken.

Pot stickers, General Tso's chicken, Pot stickers, Egg rolls, Cashew chicken, Sizzling rice soup, Chicken with broccoli, Hunan Wor Noodle Soup, Chow mein, Szechuan Beef, General Tso's Chicken, Mongolian Beef, Walnut prawns, Sweet and sour pork, Ginger beef, General Tso tofu, Orange chicken, Beef broccoli.

Mongol beef, Mango chicken, Pork fried rice, Sesame chicken, Hot and sour soup, Lemon chicken, Spicy eggplant, Hunan fish, Hot and sour soup, Hunan Wor Won Ton Soup, Seafood Soup, Chow mein, Mongolian beef.



Years ago 'Uncle', who was old and lived by himself in Chinatown, would every night go over to the hamburger joint for a few beers, and doze in his chair. Occasionally he would wake up and make conversation.
One of his opening lines was "Mongolian beef, hot!"
It had been a new experience for him.
Old school Canto American.
He was startled.
Hot!


It almost never happens that I go to Chinese restaurants with other people, and after reading several of their reviews that is probably a rather good thing. While I like seeing a Chinese family prosper selling food to entitled yuppies and folks with ridiculous expectations, I shall probably not eat there.

"Perfect moist breast meat no weird stuff"

There are some dishes above that I have never tried.
I am just not that adventurous.


"Spicy eggplant" might be 魚香茄子 ('yü-heung ke ji', fish flavour eggplant), and "Shanghai dumplings" are probably 小籠包 ('siu lung bao').

I like quite a number of the American Cantonese restaurant favourites, and often try new stuff. But I am a bit leery of restaurants that cater to mostly white folks, because there are no specials written in Chinese on the wall, no large happy families chowing down on steamed fish, no fatty pork belly, too much kung pao this and that, General Tso whatevers, tofu, and a focus on Orange chicken, Brown rice, and Crab cheese puffs.
Plus special vegetarian potstickers.


I did have "Crab cheese puffs" once.

There's probably a vegan version.



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Tuesday, September 19, 2017

WELL-BEHAVED, BATHED, AND NO TATTOOS

This happens all the time: one friend goes eating with another friend, and then a photo of one of them looking happy with food is posted on Facebook.
Guys, stop doing that. It's pissing off your Aspy and not-sufficiently-socialized acquaintances!

From the moment I walked through the door of the dim sum place for a late lunch till when I lit up my pipe outside, NO pictures were snapped.
Also, as you might guess, I ate alone.

That's hardly yam cha.


At the computer company I organized regular trips into Palo Alto for meals, as well as three farewell lunches for departing colleagues. For a number of years I got bunches of people to a coffee shop near a regular manifestation we all took part in, think of it as inclusionary and team building or whatever, and bought everybody stimulating beverages.
Thank you all for coming.

There are many people I know and with whom I associate.

I am by inclination a social eater.

Or I was.


一盅兩件
['yat jung leung kin']

Dim sum should have a bunch of people around the table, so that a variety of snacky things can be enjoyed along with conversation and lots of tea.

One bowl of tea and two things from the steam-table (一盅兩件) is, when you think about it, a rather piss-poor excuse for a dim sum lunch.

There was no conversation. I had plenty of time to think, and the afternoon was marked by extraordinary peace and quiet.


'grumble grumble grumble'


Bright spots: making snarky remarks on a Yeshivish discussion page, two pipe-fulls of splendid flake tobacco, the severely stark beauty of empty alleyways, little girls playing with their dogs in a park under their mothers' watchful eyes, middle-aged tourist couples holding hands, parrots loudly quarrelling in the trees down at Sue Bierman Park, and watching crows taking in the last warm rays perched on a row of traffic lights.
Crows, it turns out, really like each other's company.
And are calmy affectionate.



PS.: New rule - all funerals must include free coffee.
Otherwise no one will even show up.



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TAKING NOTES FOR THE INVASION FLEET

A friend who never reads this blog unless I force him to went to his second baseball game ever yesterday. This is only remarkable because I have been to one more than he has. All three of the baseball games I attended were company events, the choice being either spend some time getting to know your coworkers and their weird habits, or stay at the office the rest of the day and work. I am a team player.

There was still a smoking area at the ball park then. It was an isolated balcony, a sundrenched Siberia overlooking an industrial wasteland.
Fortunately one of my coworkers had brought sunblocker.


The office had cleaner bathrooms and less beer. I cannot remember the games, and I don't drink beer.


That is to say, I don't drink beer unless I am out with the bookseller once a week and we're digesting politics, contemporary society, modern culture, drunks playing in traffic at the nearby intersection, existenzangst, and ein allumfassender abscheu an zügelloses pot-raucherei und rap-musik.

Plus, in his case, a hamburger.


After one beer, and keenly inspecting the art in the alley, we head over to a dive bar for whisky, where one of the screens shows what's on television and another has videos suitable to the lyrics of whatever song is being misguidedly sung. Howled. Or drunkenly moaned and wailed.

He watches the teevee, irrespective of whether it is the game or the elderly Buddhist abbot with magnificent eyebrows discoursing unintelligibly in Chinese about dharma, and I watch the karaoke screen hoping that somebody will sing something that Teresa Teng sang years ago.

We listen to the yowling and loud dice games, and continue conversing.
It's a tradition of ours that developed over the years.
Keenly relished, yet lamentable.

I rather enjoy horrible performance art, he is strangely obsessed with baseball (and elderly Buddhists), and the Cantonese patrons largely ignore whoever is singing, except if they are white and acting in an eccentric or shocking manner which it will be great fun to watch.


My friend and I are impartial observers.
We're not from this planet.





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Monday, September 18, 2017

VENTILATION IS REQUIRED

What with being an anti-social old blister, my e-mail inbox seldom receives bugger all. Most of the time. Excluding stuff which isn't quite spam, but is impersonal. Two notable exceptions in recent weeks have both been from pipe-smokers with whom I have a lot more in common than just pipes. One of them is a Dutch American, one of them a Talmudic European linguist. It is quite likely that all three of us would get along famously if, perchance, we were in the same room, whether or not smoking was permitted.

It would indeed be miraculous were that to happen, because one of us is in New England, one of us is in the German speaking part of the world, and one of us is here.

The whisky would likely be Scotch, the tea sub-continental.

And the walls would have to be book covered.

Either that or there would laptops.

So we could find stuff.

Citations, data.

Sources.


Quite likely such a meeting would drive our significant others (if and where applicable) and nearests and dearests (also where applicable) up the wall. Which, necessarily, means they would climb up the bookshelves and sit at the top, hissing and spitting.

I relish that mental picture.



Today little white nipple man visited my place of work again. I am blessed. If that is the right word. On the other hand, a gentleman from Shanghai was also in town, and we had quite a discussion about traditional characters versus simplified forms, as well as seal script variations.






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THE POTATO EATERS

Pursuant yesterday morning's mention of a "Dutch Culinary Celebration" in Bangkok (see here), it struck me that there are two items which would be perfect for introducing timorous Thais to the wonders of the Netherlandish table. Besides raw herring, smoked eel, split pea soup with smoked ham hock, zure zult, and buttered raisin bread, of course.
Especially because a plethora of deep-fried snacky foods and baked sweet goods could frighten the poor creatures, and Dutch-Indonesian inventions which were never made in Asia when the Dutch were still a colonial power might prove too familiar yet too strange.

These two items are familiar to every Dutchman, and easy to like.
Even many American tourists enjoy these dishes.
And they're a fickle bunch.


HUZAREN SALADE (HUSSAR SALAD)
A potato salad with fine chopped gherkins and meat.
Sometimes it's shocking pink.

One large apple.
Two or three hard-boiled eggs, peeled.
Two or three large gherkins.
One pound of potatoes.
Half a pound of cooked meat (pork, veal, or chicken).
Five TBS mayonnaise.
One TBS vinegar.
Salt and pepper.
Optional: cooked beets.

Peel and chunk the potatoes, cook for about ten minutes till soft. Drain and let cool. Peel, seed, and chop the apple, chop the gherkins. Dice the meat sort of small. Mix everything, then cut up the hard-boiled eggs and add. Adjust the taste with salt and pepper.
Dust with a little paprika.
Garnish with parsley.

Cover with plastic wrap and chill for an hour at least.

Traditionally some Martini onions are chopped up and included, often cooked beets are added for a disturbing colour.

Serve with toast.


HETE BLIKSEM (HOT LIGHTENING)
Potatoes mashed with cooked apples and stewed brisket (klapstuk).

Two pounds of potatoes.
One pound plus of tangy apples.
Three or four large onions.
One pound beef brisket.
Two cups of red wine for cooking.
One cup of good stock, ditto.
Salt and pepper.
A bay leaf or two.
Nutmeg.
Butter or olive oil.

Simmer the brisket in a pan with the wine, stock, bay leaf, and a pinch of nutmeg till good and done, which will be slightly over an hour and a half. Let it cool, then slice it into thick pieces. Reserve the pan juices for jus.
Peel and cook the potatoes.
Peel, seed, and chop the apples, chop the onion also, and cook these with optionally a dash of vinegar or a squeeze of lemon if the apples are too sweet. When the potatoes and apples are done, drain them and coarsely mash together, with a little butter or olive oil, salt and pepper. Sour cream or crème fraiche can be added, as well as a pinch of sugar to adjust the flavour.
And bacon drippings if you have that.

In some parts of the country they use dried apples, and almost any meat can be served with the mash, most especially stewed fatty pork, slices of cooked spek, or smoked farm sausage.
Bacon. Bacon is good.

Pears can be substituted for some of the apples.

In Brabant this accompanies blood sausage.



All Dutch dishes benefit from a dash of Louisiana hot sauce by the way, and having both sambal and good mustard on the table is splendid.
Avoid American mustard, it's nasty.




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Sunday, September 17, 2017

GAME DAY, OH BOY!

The game started at twenty five minutes post one, Pacific Time. By quarter past there were fifteen cigar smokers clustered in front of the television, their little beady eyes all bright and their cheeks glowing.
Oh, the enthusiasm!

I have no clue which team won.
In fact, I don't even know who played.

Those of us not interested in balls and spandex botties sampled some fine products. Specifically HH MacBaren's Latakia Flake, Rattray's Stirling Flake (identical to Peterson's Irish Flake), and GLP Union Square.

The cigar smokers did not notice us behind them.

They would have pooed if they did.





At one point, glancing at the yowling savages in the armchairs, I mistook a pizza commercial on the telly for a car commercial.

I am slightly deaf.


Thankyewjayzis.




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THE CONDIMENT OF CHOICE IS MAYONNAISE

There is a five-day Dutch food festival in Bangkok going on. Dutch food, in Bangkok. Even if you know zilch about Dutch food, you realize that the contrast could almost not be greater.
Years ago, one of the most common search-terms that brought readers here was "frikandel", which can be described as a staff of finely ground meat with a hefty admixture of binders and flavourings (especially nutmeg, traditional in many meat preparations) rolled in beaten egg white and finely powdered rusk crumbs, deepfried till brown.
Which the Dutch used to eat as is or with hot white mustard, but now often served with a plurality of sauces, on a bun, chopped onions added.
You can still get it plain at FeBo.
Tourists in exotic tropical locales were desperate.
As further research made plain.

The Indonesian 'perkedel', though derived from the Dutch model, does not resemble it in the slightest, being a potato crocquette that goes well with sambal and peanut sauce.


Five days. Dutch food. Bangkok.

The news article describing this bizarre event (in Dutch) can be found in De Telegraaf : Andijviestamppot in Bangkok.

The cuisine being offered is more or less typically Dutch.
But never-the-less carefully selected and presented.


Here are real Dutch food pictures:



From: Wikiwand -- Frikandel.


Surinamese chilies (Adjuma and Madame Jeannette), now grown locally.


Girl Eating Oysters, from the Mauritshuis, by Jan Steen


"Je kan de week natuurlijk ook beginnen met een metertje kapsalon" from the FB page of Kwalitaria Bischopshoeve in Breda.


Kaashuis Tromp, in Amsterdam. Their photo.


Goed stuff. Not exactly what the Thais will be introduced to by master chef (Albert Kooi) at the Westin Grande in Bangkok.
None of this will be served.


I will confess that I am giggling at this concept.




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