Dec. 8th, 2013 | 08:47 am
posted by: mcjulie
When I was eighteen and a college freshman away from home for the first time, I learned that I was supposed to be afraid to walk alone in urban areas after dark. I learned this on the phone with my mother. I was telling her about my experiences settling into college life, and we had an exchange that went something like this:
Mom: You walked across campus? By yourself? At night?
Mom: You weren’t afraid?
Mom: (pause) You could be attacked.
Me: I… guess. In theory.
Mom: Promise me you won’t do it again.
Me: How about I don’t tell you about it anymore, and you can pretend I don’t do it?
(I didn’t mention that I had already walked at night by myself in downtown Bellingham, because I worried she’d blow a gasket.)
Anyway, the news that I was supposed to be wary of such activity came as a complete shock. It had never come up before — as a teenager, I lived in way-out-there suburbs without a car of my own, so there was nowhere I could go alone unless it was walking distance, and there was nothing walking distance except more suburbs, and there was certainly no reason to go there at night.
One of the things I loved most about college was that I could go where I wanted, when I wanted, full stop. I could walk to the store, or the movie theater, or the coffee shop. I could walk to a friend’s house. I could walk to Denny’s. I had, for the first time in my life, freedom, and autonomy. That was adulthood, baby. There was no way I was giving that up. Anyway, my mom was a big worrier about everything, so I figured she was the outlier.
At some point — I must have been home for the summer or the winter holidays — at her urging, I accompanied her to a self-defense class. I don’t remember if this class was specifically for women, or if it was coincidence that all attendees were female. We learned how to use something called a kubotan, which is a little black plastic stick that you can use as a keychain, and as a weapon.( Cut for length...Collapse )
Dec. 7th, 2013 | 10:48 pm
posted by: jinian
There are more dresses and skirts involved when it's not so chilly out, but this is a pretty decent representation of what really goes on.
( Lots of pictures!Collapse )
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Well I am pleased to report I have found something just a few inches off from being the real deal. Plaza Garibaldi in Queen Anne makes sopapillas that are like smaller, slightly more donut-like versions of a real New Mexican/Arizonan sopapilla.
( Photographic proofCollapse )
Dec. 4th, 2013 | 11:48 pm
posted by: jinian
Mushrooms stuffed with balsamic-onion jam and some undetectable Brie.
That ubiquitous rosemary flatbread-stuff that is actually a giant cracker -- these are tasty but they break so unpredictably that I will never comprehend why we don't use the far more efficient cracker format -- spread with a thin layer of cream cheese and a cherry-jalapeno jam.
Fried mozzarella-basil wontons. I cannot speak to the marinara dipping sauce, as that is made of poison, but these were pretty good. They cooled quickly, though; one of the advantages of breading on cheese sticks, or of jalapeno poppers, is that the cheese is more insulated and stays melty better. I don't think there's a materials solution to the tradeoff of keeping it warm vs. napalm-like pockets of molten doom in a freshly fried food, though.
Pumpkin-pie-infused vodka, which we tried to come up with ways to use effectively. Bailey's was lackluster in combination. I suggested spiked vanilla milkshakes, but we didn't wind up trying it.
I made a drink that was mandarin-orange-flavored vodka and cranberry bitters with soda and lime, which my mom said tasted like nothing. "Is that what you like?" It is not my fault you have lost your taste buds to age, lady.
Turkey! I love turkey. And gravy, not particularly remarkable gravy but it doesn't need to be.
Smoked fowl. Cornish game hens? Chickens? I heard them called both, and they were of intermediate size. Pink and yummy. I only had a little, since one person can't have turkey and I didn't like to deprive him.
Mashed potatoes. Dairy-enabled this year due to Wim absence.
Sweet potatoes. Thank goodness no marshmallows. This was both delicious and weird, though: brown sugar and pecan topping, but also bananas mashed in. Unless you tasted after them specifically, you didn't know what that extra flavor was, but the bananas were strong and strange.
Brussels-sprout faceoff. Two people in my family like these things, and they've recently taken to trying to outdo each other in making them edible. I don't hate them, but I like almost any other vegetable better, so it was kind of impressive that I enjoyed both of the treatments pretty well. One was a breadcrumb and parmesan thing, and the one I liked better used balsamic vinegar and cranberries to almost entirely kill the sulfur flavor.
Some people eat dressing or stuffing. I do not, though we had both.
Cranberry sauce, topic of the great cousin schism. Although we're all on the same page about jellied vs. whole berry -- obviously jellied is correct -- we have an ongoing theatrical fight about scooping vs. slicing to serve. I am pretty sure I started it one year when someone had presliced the whole can, I mean, what was that bullshit?
(Interlude to visit my dad, who was collapsed in bed feeling terrible. He said he would eat a small plate of food if we got him one, so I made sure Mom took it to him later.)
Little cheesecakes with caramel and bits of candy bar on top. I was a fool to eat one without a plate under it, as the crusts were fucking crumbly. Some candy bars were Snickers and some were Twix. It was hard to argue with these.
Boozy Chai Pumpkin Pie, made from the very pumpkin that had infused the aforementioned vodka. No flavor accrued from the vodka, as one would expect, but the chai spice was excellent. Dense filling wasn't even really custard any more, too solid. Dark caramelized crust.
Ridiculous pumpkin tart that my mom had been talking about for a month. This was out of control. Springform pan, regular-tasting pie crust but it might have been supposed to have bourbon in, fairly standard filling, thick layer of salted caramel on top of the filling (!), candied pumpkin seeds on top of the caramel (!!). She didn't make the bourbon whipped cream, but there was already too much going on, so that was okay. Delicious but bewildering.
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Dec. 2nd, 2013 | 12:44 pm
posted by: thatsassylassie in seattle
Nov. 27th, 2013 | 11:07 pm
posted by: jinian
There was a faux chestnut in the pizza place harvest display, all silly green-plastic spines. Wim and I were both delighted.
1. Felt better about going to family Thanksgiving. (Failing actually interacting better, I have the new 3DS Zelda game.)
2. Painted fabric looking good for baby square of doom.
3. Thai noodles and Leverage with Wim making us both feel better.
4. Email with rushthatspeaks and very important Lucien cat.
1. Moderately intelligent cloning scheme generated by me!
2. Finished painting some very pretty coral, set the dye, and (this is critical) decided not to screw up my fingers and brain trying to finish the whole thing tonight.
3. Played Rock Band with my new drum pedal, which I had to buy on eBay since somehow the Goodwill only has the main drum-kit parts. Fun! Hilarious to observe myself failing to control my own foot!
This entry was originally posted at http://jinian.dreamwidth.org/608851.html. Respond wherever you like.
Nov. 27th, 2013 | 06:36 pm
posted by: cithra
With luck when I'm done I can pay my way across the Styx.
Nov. 27th, 2013 | 10:00 am
posted by: the_sky_anus in seattle
In short, I'm about to bite down on the proverbial leather belt, grunt and holler, blow out my O-ring, and smother you all with whiteness from my bowels.
I mean. Maybe. If I feel like it.
More than likely, I'll just dribble on you and make it unpleasantly damp and chilly. Expect high-30s to mid-40s and glorious wetness.
Nov. 25th, 2013 | 10:33 pm
posted by: jinian
But. I did work things usefully and sensibly. I got tickets to Night Vale Live. I made a list of errands that needed doing (yes, on the back of the Allie Brosh flyer) and did them. I fortunately ran into M-pig and dragged her with for latter errands, which meant trying on dresses together, which is fun.
After getting extremely crashy and coming home, I ate food, some of which was healthy. And I made progress on the baby square of doom. So I am awesome, just afflicted with mood and head badness. (This does not make me feel a lot better right now, but it is true.)
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